IP cameras - Expert commentary

Securing your business while working remotely
Securing your business while working remotely

It's a very common purchase for people to seek a smart security camera to remotely link them to their home whilst at work. Now the emphasis has shifted, with a lot more people working from home, business owners should consider a surveillance device to deter would-be thieves, protecting valuable equipment crucial for businesses to operate successfully. A robust security camera setup can aid existing security staff, and give business owners peace of mind out of hours.    According to a recent report, police forces are having to carry out extra night patrols in empty city and town centres, as burglars target shops, pubs and other commercial premises during the pandemic. During these unprecedented times, investing in a video security system can save you and your business money – and in more than one way. In addition to preventing loss of property from inside, surveillance cameras also prevent acts of theft and vandalism by outside individuals However, technology, improved mobile connectivity, apps, and cloud technologies has changed the security market and made it easy for anyone to set up a surveillance ecosystem with easy installation and constant round the clock, cloud monitoring. Plus, you can access footage from anywhere in the world via devices and apps – just in case you have to skip the country! The best cameras for SMBs Most good cameras have the much same functionality: excellent video and audio capabilities, remote access and programming, motion and sound detection, and the ability to capture still or video images and audio and save the data to the Cloud. But the burning question is, when you're trying to find a need in a haystack, what will work best for a small to medium sized business? A robust security camera setup can aid existing security staff, and give business owners peace of mind out of hours Now you can buy cameras that come packed with features such as integrated night vision, 1080p resolution, microSD card slot for local recording, two-way audio functionality as well as the latest latest 128bit encryption. They also have wide-angle lenses allowing users to see more of their office with a single camera, and some come with free, intelligent AI-Based motion detection. The AI gives users more choices on what is captured by the camera and when they should be alerted. Users can specify what types of motion they would like to detect, such as an intruder as opposed to a dog, an object crossing a defined boundary or into a specific area. They can also define multiple zones, alerting them immediately when movement is detected in particular areas. Easy installation is crucial These security cameras should also be easy enough to install and use that you don't need to fork out for expensive expert installation, and many can work with existing CCTV and CCTV DVR systems you may already have set-up. Many of the business security cameras are Wi-Fi enabled and come with their own apps, so you can view footage on your smartphone or tablet, no matter where you are in the world. It means you don't need to pay for a security team to watch the footage at all times (though if you can afford it, that won't hurt), and you can store your videos locally with an NVR on a HD, in the cloud with mydlink or do both with a hybrid NVR/cloud recorder. The apps use Rich Notifications which send a push notification with snapshot to the mobile device the moment activity is detected. Users can react immediately without the need to log into the app by accessing the camera’s live view or calling one of two pre-assigned contacts with a single tap. Any motion-triggered recordings can be saved in the cloud, or locally on a microSD card. Indoor, Outdoor or both? Indoor cameras can be smaller, more lightweight and are usually less intrusive than bulkier outdoor cameras The primary distinction between indoor and outdoor security cameras is the types of external factors each camera has to be able to withstand. While both types of cameras usually come in similar styles and with comparable features, outdoor cameras need to be able to contend with all types of weather and varying light conditions. Outdoor cameras are also more vulnerable to being tampered with, so they are typically made of more durable materials, like metal, and may be heavier or even housed in a casing in order to discourage easy removal. Indoor cameras can be smaller, more lightweight and are usually less intrusive than bulkier outdoor cameras. Both indoor and outdoor cameras utilise features like infrared, allowing for clear pictures in low light conditions and easy transitions when there is a sudden change in light-changing automatically from colour images in bright light to black and white when it gets darker. When doing your research, features to look out for include: Wide angle lens for optimum room view or full view of the front of your property Full HD 1080p at 30fps   ONVIF compatible - Open Network Video Interface Forum - The forum aims to standardize how IP products within the video surveillance industry communicate with each other. Night vision - look at length of the night vision - 5m is about right Your options will depend on your budget and specific needs, but the above features are a great start when you come to buy.

Edge computing, AI and thermal imaging – the future of smart security
Edge computing, AI and thermal imaging – the future of smart security

Smart security is advancing rapidly. As AI and 4K rise in adoption on smart video cameras, these higher video resolutions are driving the demand for more data to be stored on-camera. AI and smart video promise to extract greater insights from security video. Complex, extensive camera networks will already require a large amount of data storage, particularly if this is 24/7 monitoring from smart video-enabled devices. With 4K-compliant cameras projected to make up over 24% of all network cameras shipped by 2023 – there is a fast-growing desire for reliable storage on-board security cameras. The question for businesses is: do they look to break up their existing smart video network, by separating and compartmentalising cameras to handle data requirements, or do they increase its storage capabilities? As some people begin to venture out and return to work following initial COVID-19 measures, we are also seeing demand for thermal imaging technology increase. New technology like this combined with more of these always-on systems being rolled out, means organisations will need to carefully consider their smart video strategy. Newer edge computing will play an important role in capturing, collecting, and analysing data and there are some key trends you can expect to see as a result of this evolution. There are many more types of cameras being used today, such as body cameras, dashboard cameras, and new Internet of Things (IoT) devices and sensors. Video data is so rich nowadays, you can analyse it and deduce a lot of valuable information in real-time, instead of post-event. Edge computing and smart security As public cloud adoption grew, companies and organisations saw the platform as a centralised location for big data. However, recently there’s been opposition to that trend. Instead we are now seeing data processed at the edge, rather than in the cloud. There is one main reason for this change in preference: latency. Newer edge computing will play an important role in capturing, collecting, and analysing data Latency is an important consideration when trying to carry out real-time pattern recognition. It’s very difficult for cameras to process data – 4K surveillance video recorded 24/7 – if it has to go back to a centralised data centre hundreds of miles away. This data analysis needs to happen quickly in order to be timely and applicable to dynamic situations, such as public safety. By storing relevant data at the edge, AI inferencing can happen much faster. Doing so can lead to safer communities, more effective operations, and smarter infrastructure. UHD and storage AI-enabled applications and capabilities, such as pattern recognition, depend on high-definition resolutions such as 4K – also known as Ultra High Definition (UHD). This detailed data has a major impact on storage – both the capacity and speeds at which it needs to be written, and the network. Compared to HD, 4K video has much higher storage requirements and we even have 8K on the horizon. As we know, 4K video has four times the number of pixels as HD video. In addition, 4K compliant video supports 8, 10, and 12 bits per channel that translate to 24-, 30- or 36-bit colour depth per pixel. A similar pattern holds for HD — more colour using 24 bits or less colour using 10 or 12 bits in colour depth per pixel. Altogether, there is up to a 5.7x increase in bits generated by 4K vs. 1080 pixel video. Larger video files place new demands on data infrastructure for both video production and surveillance. Which means investing in data infrastructure becomes a key consideration when looking into smart security. Always-on connectivity Whether designing solutions that have limited connectivity or ultra-fast 5G capabilities, most smart security solutions need to operate 24/7, regardless of their environment. Yet, on occasion, the underlying hardware and software systems fail. In the event of this, it is important to establish a failover process to ensure continued operation or restore data after a failure, including everything from traffic control to sensors to camera feeds and more. Consider the example of a hospital with dozens or even over a hundred cameras connected to a centralised recorder via IP. If the Ethernet goes down, no video can be captured. Such an event could pose a serious threat to the safety and security of hospital patients and staff. For this reason, microSD cards are used in cameras to enable continuous recording. Software tools – powered by AI – can then “patch” missing data streams with the content captured on the card to ensure the video stream can be viewed chronologically with no content gaps. Thermal imaging Health and safety is the number one priority for all organisations as people return to work and public spaces. Some organisations are deploying thermal imaging to help screen individuals for symptoms as they return. Organisations that operate with warehouses, depots and assembly lines will traditionally have large amounts of cameras located outside of the entrance. With thermal imaging smart video in place, these cameras can now serve a dual purpose as a screening device. The thermal imaging technology is capable of detecting elevated body temperatures, with 10-25 workers being scanned in one shot, from one camera – making it an efficient and accurate process. This way, staff can use the information to help identify people who may need further screening, testing, and/or isolation before returning to work. There are many more types of cameras being used today, such as body cameras, dashboard cameras, and new Internet of Things (IoT) devices While this may not increase data storage requirements, it can change your retention policies and practices. Smart security today is about utilising AI and edge computing, to deliver an always-on, high-resolution video provision that can help keep people safe 24/7. These trends increase the demands and importance of monitoring, which means requirements of the supporting data infrastructure improve to match that, including the ability to proactively manage the infrastructure to help ensure reliable operation. Companies need to make sure they have considered all the storage and policy challenges as part of their smart security strategy for the future.  

The increased role of video surveillance technology in our changing environment
The increased role of video surveillance technology in our changing environment

Today’s environment has evolved into something that according to some may seem unexplainable. But in the context of video surveillance, this is something that we understand. Allow me to shed some light and understanding in terms of security and why it truly is a necessity. Security is not a luxury, it is a necessity. An essential practice now peaking the interests of all businesses small and large. A video surveillance system is a cost effective option that does not require monitoring fees. As business slows, temporarily shuts down or closes, an increase in vacant properties is inevitable. This pandemic will continue to put severe pressure on many businesses around the country. With so many considered non-essential, it is really sad to see how many must shutter their doors and lay off employees. Keeping an eye out for suspicious activity using a commercial grade surveillance system that supports advanced analytics, may end up saving your potential customers thousands of dollars down the road. Demand for video surveillance and security products We can certainly draw on the conclusion that security is a “need” more so than a “want”. Times like this just further cement that thought process. In today’s economic spiral, people aren’t actively looking for lighting controls or home theaters. What they look for is a way to keep their loved ones safe, protect their homes, businesses and property. In my opinion, you will see video surveillance and security product sales skyrocket in the coming months and years. It has been reported that response times for first responders may be impacted as a result of COVID-19, leaving those with bad intent more time to ransack a property knowing that law enforcement may be slow to respond. Criminals will always take advantage of the situation. All we can do as a community is use common sense, stay vigilant and watch out for one another. For some of us that may mean mitigating risks with technology. Affordable video monitoring solutions Having a solution that can quickly and securely share video footage may be the difference between identifying a perpetrator and becoming a victim. Ella, a video search platform developed by IC Realtime, makes every second of video instantly searchable and shareable, either with the authorities or your neighborhood social apps. Plus it is compatible with any RTSP streaming device. To wrap this up, it’s not about pointing out the obvious, it’s really about bringing awareness as to how technologies can be implemented to provide peace of mind without breaking the bank. Video surveillance technology is a way to do that and provide added security for you, your family and your business.

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Secutech highlights mobile app at the Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center in Taiwan
Secutech highlights mobile app at the Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center in Taiwan

The 16th edition of the show is expected to house more than 560 exibitors under one roof Organised by Messe Frankfurt New Era Business Media Ltd, Secutech 2013 will be held from 24 – 26 April at the Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center in Taiwan. The 16th edition of the show is expected to house more than 560 exhibitors under one roof. The security industry players from around the globe will display the latest products of surveillance, access control, parking equipment, integrated security solutions and more. The Secutech mobile app is now operational. It highlights features such as pre-registration, exhibitor news, show updates and transportation. Mr Parson Lee, Managing Director of the organiser, is delighted with the new move. “Smart phones are now commonly used, and it is essential that the information of Secutech becomes easily reached. With the app, I believe the show participants can know the updates about the show efficiently.” One of the biggest pavilions for access control in Asia. Secutech 2013 will present one of the biggest pavilions for access control in Asia. The pavilion is expected to include around 100 suppliers in 1,200 sqm exhibiting area. The portfolio will include access control products for parking, gates, and smart home equipment such as video door phone and control panels. Shenzhen is a manufacturing base for security products in China. Top 50 manufacturers from the region are invited to form the first Shenzhen pavilion in Secutech 2013. In addition, many internationally well-known brands will participate at the 2013 show. The brands include Dahua, Dali and Hikvision from China; Mobotix from Germany; Sparsh from India; Tamron from Japan; HDPRO and Micro Digital from Korea Dynacolor, Everfocus and Vivotek from Taiwan as well as Infinova from US. In order to promote themselves, some brands offer cameras, transmission and access control systems or other featured products to visitors. Trade visitors who pre-register early on the show website or through Secutech mobile app will have a chance to win a product. One of the highlights of Secutech will be the HD SDI demonstration, a unique arrangement to allow visitors to understand the performance of various products. New to this year’s show will be a demonstration area which simulates as a bank. The special setting showcases the quality of cameras more effectively. Exhibitors will also have an opportunity to introduce the products and interact with visitors.

Secutech 2011 announces dedicated pavilion for High Definition (HD) / Digital Surveillance products
Secutech 2011 announces dedicated pavilion for High Definition (HD) / Digital Surveillance products

Secutech Asia 2011 takes place from 20-22 April in TaiwanTo meet an increasing demand for surveillance equipment, Secutech, Asia's leading safety and security fair will feature a new pavilion for HD/Digital Surveillance products at its 2011 show to be held from 20-22 April 2011 at the Nangang Taipei World Trade Centre, Taiwan. The show is organised by Messe Frankfurt New Era Business Media Ltd., a leading integrated media company dedicated to the security industry, organising Secutech trade fairs as well as publishing 12 A&S magazines and operating several websites.Mr Parson Lee, Managing Director, Messe Frankfurt New Era Business Media Ltd. said: "High definition video can yield up to six times more pixels per second than analogue cameras and as a result, it has become one of the fastest growing product segments in the surveillance equipment market. To meet this increasing market, Secutech is setting up the world's first new HD/Digital Surveillance pavilion with 500 booths."This new pavilion is expected to attract 140 exhibitors and industry heavyweights such as ABUS, Dahua, Dali, Everfocus, GKB, HDPro, Hisharp, Hunt, KT&C, Moswell, Pinetron, RapidOS, Tamron, TBT, Videotec and Wonwoo have already signed for the show. Products and services in the new pavilion will range from HD cameras, speed dome cameras, DVR to NVR to video content analysis. Special fringe programme caters to booming HD marketA number of forums and seminars will be organised during the show for the industry players to explore the latest HD trends and practical applications. The HD Surveillance Forum is one of several Global Digital Surveillance Forum (GDSF Asia) events where the world's leading HD surveillance providers will share their insights into key issues such as standards, transmission requirements and new applications. This will be of particular interest to system integrators, IT installers, communications and end users.The Composec HD Surveillance Seminar is especially designed for R&D and project managers. It will feature the most updated technology for WDR sensors, video analytics at edge, real-time compression and other control IC chips, which are widely used in large-scale transportation. In addition, it will cover the topics of storage, display and other interface upgrades and the change to an IP-based system. For further information about Secutech, please visit the event website or contact Ms Veronica Chen at +886 (2) 2659 9080 ext 777 or email her.Secutech is part of Messe Frankfurt's global network of security trade fairs. Messe Frankfurt also organises five other leading security trade fairs: Intersec in Dubai, Secutech Thailand, Secutech Vietnam, Seguriexpo Buenos Aires and Intersec Buenos Aires. For more information, please visit the Intersec website.

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