Education security applications
ASSA ABLOY’s Code Handle door entry solution is a simple solution for keeping private rooms very private, in order to allow access only to those who require it and authorised personnel. Code Handle door entry solution The PIN code setting of the Code Handle access control solution allows users to keep control of who has access, particularly important when they want to keep items away from children. In primary schools, Code Handle protects each and every room that staff and security don&...
Dahua Technology, a globally renowned video-centric smart IoT solutions and service provider, will hold its 2nd online Dahua Technology Partner Day, from October 13 - 14, 2021, with the theme - ‘Building a digital future’. Dahua Technology Partner Day Adhering to its strategy of open cooperation, Dahua Technology is committed to creating a win-win ecosystem, with major technology partners around the world. This year, Dahua Technology will join hands with its 22 global partners, in...
Schools present unique challenges for security and access control. But what about a school that is also a heritage site of exceptional value? The Colegio Diocesano Santo Domingo in Orihuela, Spain, is more than just a school. Its historic buildings date to the 1500s, a heritage site as well as a place of learning — with a museum that requires the protection of the same access system. The college buildings are a Resource of Cultural Interest and on Spain’s heritage registry: They mus...
Doncaster Culture and Leisure Trust (DCLT), The Dome, required a new solution that would protect several areas, including one of the largest gym’s in Doncaster, The Fitness Village. Vanderbilt ACT365 system DCLT had a specific brief for this project that specified enhancing the staff and customer experience, while simultaneously providing access control solutions to restricted areas from the general public, members, and staff alike. Oliver Law Security (OLS) Ltd. did not hesitate to rec...
An important heritage site which played a key role in protecting the UK during World War II is itself being made safe and secure with the installation of a comprehensive and fully integrated security system, including more than 75 Dahua HD CCTV cameras. Battle of Britain Bunker The Battle of Britain Bunker is an underground operations room in Uxbridge, formerly used by No. 11 Group Fighter Command during the Second World War, most notably in the Battle of Britain and on D-Day. The operations...
Monitoring campuses to protect students, parents, and staff means balancing proactive measures with effective response to incidents. Ava Unified Security (previously Vaion) helps one identify unwanted events like vandalism, intrusion, loitering, parking violations, or people involved in suspicious acts so that one can focus on what truly matters: delivering positive academic experiences. Anomaly detection in real-time Powered by Spotlight™, the dynamic video view with instant notificatio...
Scenario: One needs to install a camera in the lobby of a building to capture the entrance area. Problem: The area has a lot of windows which overexposes the image, making it difficult to capture the people coming in and out of the premises. Solution: A security camera with a good Wide Dynamic Range (WDR). What WDR does? Dynamic range refers to the ratio between the largest and smallest measurable quantities of something. In the case of video surveillance, the dynamic range measures the ratio between the lightest and darkest elements of the image. WDR technology is great for high contrast scenes, balancing the brightness and shaded areas simultaneously so an image neither appears blown out or too dark. IHS defines WDR at 60 dB or greater, though it’s not uncommon to see WDR cameras with capabilities of 120 dB or more Decibels (dB) are the value with which dynamic range is measured. IHS defines WDR at 60 dB or greater, though it’s not uncommon to see WDR cameras with capabilities of 120 dB or more. However, keep in mind that each manufacturer has its own method of determining a camera’s dB. Therefore, when comparing product datasheets, it is possible that a camera with a lower ratio outperforms a competitor with a higher dB ratio. How WDR works? Security cameras with WDR technology (e.g. Dahua HDCVI 6.0 PLUS) are using either Digital WDR (DWDR) or True WDR. True WDR uses image sensors and a Digital Signal Processor (DSP) to provide even illumination to all areas of an image. A True WDR-enabled video surveillance camera has sensors that take two scans of each video frame. The first, at low speed (to capture more light), shows the image in normal light conditions. The second scan is taken at high speed to capture less light overall and get an image with strong light in the background. The DSP combines the two scans to form a single, balanced, well-illuminated image. DWDR uses algorithms instead of sensors to digitally brighten too-dark areas and dim too-bright areas. DWDR relies on the DSP chip instead of the image sensor to provide WDR. It adjusts each individual pixel of the image and calculates exposure accordingly. This technique has some limitations: the intense manipulation of pixels leads to the overall image being grainier. On the other hand, DWDR doesn’t need costly image sensors, so DWDR can be a more economical option when WDR is a necessity. When one doesn’t have WDR? Backlight Compensation (BLC) brightens the image so one can see darker details better There are two options for improving the exposure of an image without using WDR. In a high-contrast scene with heavy, broad, backlighting, the camera will adjust to the average illumination, which will darken the image. If no WDR is available, Backlight Compensation (BLC) brightens the image so one can see darker details better. BLC is a legacy technique that uses DSPs to increase the level of exposure for the entire image. Rather than balancing brightness on overexposed and underexposed areas of an image like WDR does, it brightens the entire image. Highlight Compensation (HLC) is a technology where image sensors detect strong light within the image and reduce exposure on those areas to enhance the overall image quality. In a dimly lit scene with bright lighting caused by hot spots (e.g. headlights, street lights), the overall image may become too dark. If no WDR is available, use HLC. The camera automatically suppresses bright light sources, allowing proper exposure of adjacent areas. Conclusion Regardless of the dB value specified, image results will vary depending on the complexity and amount of movement in a scene. To determine the best camera for an application, it is always best to test that it meets the needs and expectations of the customer.
A time attendance system can help to keep a close eye on an employee’s working hours, prevent time theft by accurately tracking and recording employees’ time and attendance. A biometric time attendance system allows employees to clock in quickly and easier compare to the standard system and eliminate “buddy punching” in advance to the traditional time card system. A complete biometric time attendance system includes both hardware and software. Include the electronic divide that scans an employee’s fingerprint or iris and software that stores all the data about time and shifts. Hardware and software can be purchased separately, but it’s best to find a vendor that provides both of them as a complete package. Price of the biometric software Small companies can purchase a basic system that includes hardware and software for about $1,000 to $1,500 Biometric time and attendance systems aren’t as expensive as one might think. Small companies can purchase a basic system that includes hardware and software for about $1,000 to $1,500. Some companies' solution, which works for companies with up to 50 employees, retails for $995 to $1,300. The price includes one fingerprint scanner and software that tracks arrivals and departures, calculates hours for payroll, and tracks vacation time and sick days. Large corporations with many hundreds or thousands of employees should expect to spend at least $10,000 on a biometric time and attendance system. For a complex system serving thousands of employees and multiple locations, the cost could rise as high as $100,000. In addition to a basic software and hardware package, one may need to purchase additional features, services, or accessories. Additional biometric scanners begin at about $1,000 to $1,300 each. Training begins at about $300 to $500 for smaller businesses and can run thousands for larger companies. Accessories like scanner covers, which protect the equipment when it is not in use, begin at about $30 to $50 each. CrossChex Cloud CrossChex Cloud's features include face recognition attendance, temperature, and mask identification Because there are so many options, it helps to talk to vendors about the products they provide. Some will charge an upfront fee for a set number of traditional software licenses; others will charge a monthly fee for web-hosted software. Although the market and advanced technology decrease the price of time and attendance system, some small companies or workshops still can’t afford extra spend besides salaries. Anviz introduces a new solution for those business owners - CrossChex Cloud. One can set up a new account and get only one hardware connected to be a lifetime free subscriber of CrossChex Cloud. Start at $500 only, one can get hardware that is suitable for CrossChex Cloud with advanced features includes: face recognition attendance, temperature, and mask identification, and get records of almost everything one wants to take control of.
When the University of Arizona (UA) was chosen as a COVID-19 vaccine point of dispensing (POD), they wanted to put in place a distribution process to get the vaccines out to as many people as possible as quickly and efficiently as possible. To do this, they turned to Genetec Inc., a technology provider of unified security, public safety, operations, and business intelligence solutions, and Route1 Inc., a data-centric systems integrator. ALPR technology “We had already heard about how ALPR (Automatic License Plate Recognition) could be used for tolls and monitoring traffic flow, and we were eager to see if the ALPR cameras could help us automatically track vehicles entering and exiting our POD,” said Jim Sayre, Director of Operations – Parking and Transportation Services at the University of Arizona. Cloud-based service solutions To build a solution that would not only offer valuable insights about their POD operations but would also be affordable and easy to set up, UA chose to implement the Genetec AutoVu™ Managed Services (AMS) solution with four ALPR cameras installed throughout the POD. This was paired up with the Genetec Traffic Sense™ Travel Times module within Security Center for added insight and functionality. Since the entire solution is hosted in the cloud, the university can use the software for as long as the POD remains open Having mounted the poles and set up the cameras beforehand, the actual setup was completed in under two hours on opening day. Because the entire Genetec solution is hosted in the cloud, the university can use the software for as long as the POD remains open without draining budgets. Reliable data management Using AutoVu, the UA operations team can see exactly how long it’s taking vehicles to get through the POD and for people to get vaccinated, and then identify what they can do to get them through faster. All ALPR data is sent back to Security Center, where the Travel Times module automatically analyses data and delivers insights the UA team can act on. This helps them immediately identify if there are random delays or potential issues that need to be further investigated. The solution complies with HIPAA As a healthcare-related operation, UA made sure the Genetec solution complies with all Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requirements. According to Sayre, “The cameras don't know who the driver is, or the people in the vehicle. And we’ve made it clear that we're not running this against a motor vehicle database or anything like that, so we’re ensuring privacy.” Due to the Genetec solution, the UA team discovered early on that various team leaders had different processes for appointment check-ins. When UA standardised those processes, they could consistently get vehicles through the POD faster and maximise the number of vaccinations. Adaptability The team also noticed that on certain days of the week, cars were taking longer to get through certain points in the POD. After an initial inquiry, they realised those days often had mostly new volunteers who were still learning the ropes. The UA team was then able to adapt the volunteer schedule to ensure experienced personnel was always onsite to assist newbies and keep the throughput of vehicles high. Easy to deploy modules “This AutoVu™ and Traffic Sense™ Travel Times module within Security Center built by Genetec and Route1 has helped us make the vaccination process more efficient and was so easy to deploy. We’ve been able to increase the number of vehicles through the POD in the same amount of time, and consequently, we've given out more vaccinations. And that’s what this is all about— helping our community get vaccinated against COVID-19,” concluded Sayre. Resourceful security systems “We never cease to be impressed by our customers’ ingenuity, resilience, and resourcefulness,” said Stephan Kaiser, AutoVu™ General Manager at Genetec, Inc. “The University of Arizona is another shining example of how our customers are using their security systems as strategic tools to fight against the pandemic and go beyond traditional applications to deliver more value.”
Organisations around the world sent an unprecedented number of people home during 2020 to work and attend school remotely, many of them with Chromebook laptops whose shipments more than doubled year over year. HID Global, identity solutions company, is helping organisations bring these people and their Chromebooks back to a hybrid work and classroom environment using its HID HydrantID Account Certificate Manager (ACM) digital certificate management offering. Seamless connections According to the market research firm Canalys, “Chromebooks set record shipment volumes, reaching 11.2 million units in Q4 2020, a remarkable 287% increase over Q4 2019, bringing the full-year 2020 total to 30.6 million units.” HID HydrantID ACM and its new Chromebook Certificate Enrollment Extension (CEE) feature enable organisations to issue and manage the digital certificates for bringing these devices back to physical work and study settings, ensuring they can connect to networks seamlessly and securely without passwords. Easy, cloud-based approach “The traditional walled-fortress IT security posture isn’t feasible as we transition to hybrid remote and in-person work and study environments using a growing variety of computing devices and operating systems,” said By Mrugesh Chandarana, Senior Product Manager, Commercial CA and PKI Services with HID Global, Identity and Access Management. “The huge influx of Chromebooks is here to stay and HID HydrantID ACM with its CEE feature is the first solution to provide an easy, cloud-based approach to digital certificate management that enables these devices to authenticate to enterprise networks in a passwordless, Zero Trust network access environment.” Digital certificate lifecycle management The solution offers automated digital certificate lifecycle management with tracking, installation, and renewal HID HydrantID ACM with the CEE feature offers automated digital certificate lifecycle management with tracking, installation, and renewal. It enables users of any Chromebook to make or model to be securely up and running on the network by simply plugging in their devices and seamlessly deploying certificates for passwordless authentication without any user intervention. Early adopters of the HID HydrantID CEE solution for Chromebooks include a large financial institution with a sizable remote workforce, as well as high schools and colleges where Chromebook usage grew substantially during the 2020/2021 academic year. Passwordless authentication The CEE feature is especially valuable for users as it allows them to have passwordless authentication while seamlessly navigating between remote connectivity and direct connection to the in-office network. For organisations that do not have an internal Microsoft Active Directory Certificate Services (ADCS) infrastructure, the CEE allows them to implement a seamless experience for their users while freeing up Help and\or Service Desk resources. By implementing the CEE using HID HydrantID Managed PKI-as-a-Service, organisations eliminate operational complexity and dramatically reduce costs related to operating and deploying an organisational private PKI.
Understanding access control technology has surpassed its core application as a security tool and is helping protect individuals from infection, Anviz announced the release of a strategic addition to its product line, Go Touchless - FaceDeep 5 and FaceDeep 5 IRT. Safely return to work and school during the post pandemic period leaves people with a question -with what health and safety precautions. Deep learning algorithm The dual camera for live face detection and mask, temperature alert are the key features of Anviz touchless series Anviz has introduced the AI-based face recognition terminal with mask and temperature alerts, equipped with a dual-core based Linux CPU and the latest BioNANO deep learning algorithm that enables it to recognise a face with accuracy and greater speed. According to Mr. Felix Fu, Product Manager at Anviz Global, the dual camera for live face detection and mask, temperature alert are the key features of Anviz touchless series that will make students and employees follow rules to wear masks during this period. Access control management Furthermore, combined with the latest Time Attendance and Access Control Management software- CrossChex, Anviz offers the total solutions to enforce rules that require masks and normal body temperature to access entry. With easy installation and multiple authentication options, the device can be used at public buildings, government facilities, educational institutions, hospitals, professional service firms and retails. As global demand for hygiene safety and protection is increasing, Anviz FaceDeep Series provides the best solution to reduce the worries of returning to office and school during the post-pandemic age.
Chung-Ang University, one of the universities in Korea, announced that they would test-run the "untact face recognition device combined with body temperature detection system" at the test of the regular evaluation of TOPCIT (Test Of Practice in IT) on the 20th. Trial at TOPCIT Test TOPCIT is a test that evaluates actual competency required by software (SW) industrial sites and is being used in various ways, such as granting additional points when selecting human resources from public institutions, financial institutions, and large companies. Measuring Body temperature is possible in conjunction with thermal imaging cameras The Da Vinci SW Education Centre of Chung-Ang University plans to install the UBio-X Pro2, which measures body temperature, by recognising the faces of students entering and leaving the test site to prevent COVID-19 infection and safety of applicants. Candidates apply for non-face-to-face visits in advance and certify their entry on the same day. Deep learning algorithms for large crowds The face recognition system uses deep learning algorithms to authenticate a large number of people in a short time as it can be certified through various angles and up to 2 metres away. Measuring body temperature is possible in conjunction with thermal imaging cameras and access can be restricted when abnormal body temperature is detected. "It is an opportunity to pre-emptively prepare for the post-corona era through the application of various untact systems," said Yoon Kyung-Hyun, director of the SW Educational department. "It is more meaningful since two students from the software department at Chung-Ang University are participating in the team in charge of the UNIONCOMMUNITY, which developed the face recognition system, through the industry-academic cooperation in the SW-centred university project."
How AI and humans can work together is a longstanding debate. As society progresses technologically, there’s always the worry of robots taking over jobs. Self-checkout tills, automated factory machines, and video analytics are all improving efficiency and productivity, but they can still work in tandem with humans, and in most cases, they need to. Video analytics in particular is one impressively intelligent piece of technology that security guards can utilise. How can video analytics help with certain security scenarios? Video analytics tools Before video analytics or even CCTV in general, if a child went missing in a shopping centre, we could only rely on humans. Take a crowded Saturday shopping centre, a complex one with a multitude of shops and eateries, you’d have to alert the security personnel, rely on a tannoy and search party, and hope for a lockdown to find a lost or kidnapped child. With video analytics, how would this scenario play out? It’s pretty mind-blowing. As soon as security is alerted, they can work with the video analytics tools to instruct it precisely With the same scenario, you now have the help of many different cameras, but then there’s the task of searching through all the CCTV resources and footage. That’s where complex search functions come in. As soon as security is alerted, they can work with the video analytics tools to instruct it precisely on what footage to narrow down, and there’s a lot of filters and functions to use. Expected movement direction For instance, they can tick a ‘human’ field, so the AI can track and filter out vehicles, objects etc., and then they can input height, clothing colours, time the child went missing, and last known location. There’s a complex event to check too, under ‘child kidnap’. For a more accurate search, security guards can then add in a searching criterion by drawing the child’s expected movement direction using a visual query function. A unique function like this enables visual criteria-based searches rather than text-based ones. The tech will then narrow down to the images/videos showing the criteria they’ve inputted, showing the object/child that matches the data and filter input. Detecting facial data There are illegal demonstrations and troublesome interferences that police have to deal with A white-list face recognition function is then used to track the child’s route which means the AI can detect facial data that has not been previously saved in the database, allowing it to track the route of a target entity, all in real time. Then, security guards can confirm the child’s route and current location. All up-to-date info can then be transferred to an onsite guard’s mobile phone for them to confirm the missing child’s movement route, face, and current location, helping to find them as quickly as possible. Often, there are illegal demonstrations and troublesome interferences that police have to deal with. Video analytics and surveillance can not only capture these, but they can be used to predict when they may happen, providing a more efficient process in dealing with these types of situations and gathering resources. Event processing functions Picture a public square with a number of entries into the main area, and at each entry point or path, there is CCTV. Those in the control room can set two events for each camera: a grouping event and a path-passing event. These are pretty self-explanatory. A grouping event covers images of seeing people gathering in close proximity and a path-passing event will show when people are passing through or entering. The video analytics tool can look out for large gatherings and increased footfall to alert security By setting these two events, the video analytics tool can look out for large gatherings and increased footfall to alert security or whoever is monitoring to be cautious of protests, demonstrations or any commotion. Using complex event processing functions, over-detection of alarms can also be prevented, especially if there’s a busy day with many passing through. Reducing false alarms By combining the two events, that filters down the triggers for alarms for better accuracy to predict certain situations, like a demonstration. The AI can also be set to only trigger an alarm when the two events are happening simultaneously on all the cameras of each entry to reduce false alarms. There are so many situations and events that video analytics can be programmed to monitor. You can tick fields to monitor any objects that have appeared, disappeared, or been abandoned. You can also check events like path-passing to monitor traffic, as well as loitering, fighting, grouping, a sudden scene change, smoke, flames, falling, unsafe crossing, traffic jams and car accidents etc. Preventing unsafe situations Complex events can include violations of one-way systems, blacklist-detected vehicles Complex events can include violations of one-way systems, blacklist-detected vehicles, person and vehicle tracking, child kidnaps, waste collection, over-speed vehicles, and demonstration detections. The use of video analytics expands our capabilities tremendously, working in real time to detect and help predict security-related situations. Together with security agents, guards and operatives, AI in CCTV means resources can be better prepared, and that the likelihood of preventing unsafe situations can be greatly improved. It’s a winning team, as AI won’t always get it right but it’s there to be the advanced eyes we need to help keep businesses, premises and areas safer.
Recent cyber-attacks have disabled and even shut down physical assets. Robust foundational security and training staff, able to recognise an attack can help mitigate the threat, as ABB’s Rob Putman explains. Edge devices and data analytics As cyber security specialists, we must navigate an ever-changing threat landscape, one that is made even more complex by the increased interconnectivity between Operational Technology (OT) and Information Technology (IT), as companies look to leverage edge devices and data analytics, as well as remote connectivity, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. As the threat surface evolves, the industry must guard against attacks on key physical infrastructure, carried out by a range of malicious actors, including nation states and criminals intent on blackmail. The chemicals sector, a high-value target for cyber-criminals Cyber-criminals view the chemicals sector, as a high-value target, because of the potential cost In 2017, not long after a ransomware attack that targeted Maersk, the world’s largest shipping firm, made the news around the world. Another cyber-attack, this time targeting physical industrial assets, generated fewer headlines, and yet could have resulted in both real, as well as financial, damage. Cyber-criminals view the chemicals sector, as a high-value target, because of the potential cost, both financial and reputational, to the operator, should production be interrupted or stopped entirely. Cyber security vulnerabilities put physical assets at risk The attack in question, a ‘Triton’ custom malware attack on a petro-chemical facility in Saudi Arabia, targeted a safety system, taking over system controllers. Bugs in the code triggered an emergency shutdown, but could have led to the release of toxic and explosive gases. It was a vivid reminder of how cyber security vulnerabilities are increasingly putting companies’ key physical assets at risk. Two more-recent high-profile incidents illustrate my point. In February, a Florida water treatment plant was hacked. The malicious actor remotely accessed the system for three to five minutes, during which time they opened various functions on the screen, including one that controls the amount of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) in the water. The hacker changed the NaOH from about 100 parts per million to 11,100 parts per million, which could have resulted in a mass poisoning event. Colonial Pipeline cyber-attack incident Then, in May, the Colonial Pipeline system that originates in Houston, Texas and carries gasoline, and jet fuel, suffered a ransomware attack. Using a VPN, hackers targeted back-office IT systems, forcing Colonial to shut down IT hosts and network infrastructure, severing communication with those OT systems that are responsible for communicating ‘transactional data’ associated with fuel delivery. In this instance, a single compromised password disrupted Colonial’s ability to invoice its customers. This dependency on OT data stopped pipeline and business operations, and the company was elected to pay the hackers an initial ransom of US$ 4.4 million, in order to restore operations. The Colonial attack was multi-dimensional, in that it not only impacted Colonial’s business, but also the wider US economy and national security, since the pipeline transports nearly half of the east coast's fuel supplies. Outdated IT system elevates physical risk The increased interconnectivity between IT and OT can also create vulnerabilit Attacks such as these prove that, armed with little more than a laptop, an email account and access to the dark web, determined hackers can cause disproportionate damage to physical infrastructure. As mentioned at the outset, the increased interconnectivity between IT and OT can also create vulnerability. Producers often want to know: Is it risky to connect a production asset or their operational environment to the Cloud? My answer is, if you do so without having done any risk audits around people, processes and technology, or without enhancing and maintaining that environment, then yes, that is risky. For example, we often observe that the life cycle of a production asset far outlasts the IT systems that are used to run it. Take a cement kiln. Several generations of plant operators may have come and gone, but that asset may still run, using legacy software, such as Windows XP and why not? Need to replace aging distributed control systems Well, that’s fine, if you are not concerned about having that asset compromised, and all that entails. A ‘flat’ IT network, an aging distributed control system, and machines with legacy versions of Microsoft Windows, all these elements, which are still commonplace in many industries, make it much easier for attackers to find and infiltrate a company, without needing sophisticated tools. The age-old mantra of not interfering with a piece of equipment or software that appears to be working, often applies to the individual assets. For example that cement kiln that are still controlled by the same Windows XP-based control software. However, if we’re honest, things have changed quite a bit, not because something was broken, but because innovation came in. That same kiln control system is most likely connected to other systems, than when first commissioned and that opens it to exposure to threats that it was never designed for. The human element There is a misconception that IoT-connected devices can open companies to risk There is a misconception that IoT-connected devices can open companies to risk, but many recent, high-profile cyber-attacks have been conducted from a laptop, by hacking someone’s VPN, or are a simple phishing/malware attack. In all these cases, the human element is partly to blame. Take the Florida attack. The compromised computer at the water treatment facility was reportedly running an outdated Windows 7 operating system and staff all used the same password, in order to gain remote access via the Teamviewer app, which the hacker was then able to use. Physical and human assets, key to robust cyber security Discussion on the best way to mitigate the threat is often framed solely around specific technical solutions and ignores the fact that robust foundational cyber security is really driven by two very different, but equally important, types of capital: physical assets (e.g. production machinery), and human assets. The truth is that smart digital software and industry-renowned cyber security applications, while critical, are in many cases, only as good as the weakest human link in the chain. Industry would, therefore, do well to ask itself the following question: Do we have a security problem, or a complacency problem? At this juncture, it is important to point out that the majority of companies that ABB works with, are at least aware of the threat posed by cyber attackers, and the potential impact of an attack, on their revenues, reputation and bottom line. User error and human-generated exposures Making sure staff are aware of the threat and training them to respond properly, if they are targeted, is vital However, user error and human-generated exposures are where most of these attacks occur. Those human failures are mostly not due to malicious intent from employees, but to the lack of training of the employees on secure behavior. Making sure staff are aware of the threat and training them to respond properly, if they are targeted, is vital. However, there are also age demographics at play here. Much of the operations employee base is heading towards retirement and often, there is no plan or ability to backfill these people. Need to invest in new digital and automated technologies If you think you don't have enough people now, in order to stay on top of basic care and feeding of the OT environment, with regards to security, what is that going to be like in 20 years? For this reason, there must be a major industry reset, when it comes to its workforce. Companies must invest in new digital and automated technologies, not only to ensure that they stay ahead of the curve and mitigate risk, but also to attract the next generation of digitally literate talent. Robust cyber security is built on solid foundations When we talk about foundational cyber security, we mean fundamentals, such as patching, malware protection, high-fidelity system backups, an up-to-date anti-virus system, and other options, such as application allow-listing and asset inventory. These basic controls can help companies understand their system setup and the potential threats, identify vulnerabilities, and assess their risk exposure. The Pareto principle states that around 80% of consequences come from 20% of the causes. In the context of cyber security, that means 80% of exposure to risk comes from 20% of the lack of security. If companies do the foundational things right, they can manage out a significant amount of this risk. Importance of maintaining and upgrading security controls However, having basic security controls, such as anti-virus software in place, is just the first step on that journey. Equally important is having someone within the organisation, with the requisite skill set, or the extra labour bandwidth, to operate, maintain and update those security controls, as they evolve. Educating, training and recruiting existing employees, and the next generation of talent, along with forging partnerships with trusted technology providers, will ensure that industry can leverage the latest digital technologies, in order to drive business value, and secure physical assets against cyber-attacks.
The COVID-19 pandemic is only accelerating the expansion of Automation, Robotics, Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI), and changing how people live their daily lives. This expansion leads the way with technologies that are developed to solve problems, improve operations, streamline processes and assist people, to focus on learning new skills, creativity, and imagination. Transformation of the physical security industry One of the latest industries to be permanently transformed is physical security. The era of utilising security cameras is slowly changing into more advanced and more efficient technological applications - security robotic solutions. SMP Robotics is a California-based company, which is a pioneer in developing robotic technologies, powered by AI, to assist, improve and deliver on new expectations in today’s world. One of their services is smart surveillance systems. This represents a proactive approach to security. The company, SMP Robotics’ Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Leo Ryzhenko, stated “Autonomous robotic technologies will become a driving force in future security solutions.” Robotics and AI in autonomous security solutions The robots can patrol 24/7, counteracting intrusion and communicating via voice message with guards The company uses robotics and AI technology to implement autonomous security solutions, which reduce liability and overhead, as well as improving the quality of services. Robotic guards are capable of patrolling all types of facilities, in both urban and rural contexts. The robots can patrol 24/7, counteracting intrusion and communicating via voice message with guards. The inspection robots, deployed by SMP Robotics, are easily integrated with many existing security technologies, armed with obstacle avoidance and anti-collision measures, automatically recharge, and can recognise faces up to 50 metres. As the world grows increasingly complex, technology like this is essential to ensure safety for all. AI-enabled autonomous video monitoring ground vehicles The advancements in technological breakthroughs of SMP Robotics position the company and its AI-powered, autonomous video monitoring ground vehicles, to be the most adaptable to any industry, cost-effective for clients’ business needs, in providing various types of services from public safety, crime prevention, to asset protection and physical security. SMP Robotics continues to implement new innovative solutions and groundbreaking technologies in its latest generation of autonomous models. Currently, many were already deployed or in a process to be delivered to a number of key clients, in various industries throughout the globe, from oil & gas, nuclear power plants to data centers, healthcare facilities, and amusement parks. Smart security robots Tal Turner, the Vice President (VP) of Business Development and Partnerships, SMP Robotics, said “We provide autonomous, artificial intelligence, all-weather, all-surface, smart security robots that are turnkey and operate independently on their own, using real-time obstacle avoidance, face recognition, and other cutting-edge technological advancements.” According to Coherent Market Insights, the Robots as a Service (RaaS) market direction will grow by 15.9% by 2028 and reach the threshold of 41.3 billion dollars. SMP Robotics stands at the forefront of the security robotic revolution, making an impactful change to make the world a safer place.
The trend of video customers moving to the cloud has reached a tipping point. At the same time, artificial intelligence (AI) is being adopted on a massive scale. Combining the two trends adds a higher level of value than either component individually. Merging the power of AI and the cloud is a driving force behind cloud surveillance company Eagle Eye Networks’ acquisition of Uncanny Vision, an AI and video analytics company headquartered in Bangalore, India. Expensive AI resources Cloud systems empower customers to leverage AI without having to install and program complicated and expensive hardware, in effect stripping away the barriers to entry that customers face when seeking to embrace AI. The cloud also enables customers to share expensive AI resources. One of the key components is ease of deployment – click, click and turn on the AI for any camera" Simplicity of implementation is crucial to the combined value proposition of Eagle Eye Networks and Uncanny Vision. “One of the key components is ease of deployment – click, click and turn on the AI for any camera (in a cloud system),” says Dean Drako, Eagle Eye Networks CEO. There is also a benefit of having AI systems networked, enabling 25 banks to perform facial recognition of customers from a single cloud-based system, he adds. A transition is also under way in the perception of AI. Video surveillance applications While previously it was seen as an add-on to surveillance systems, now it is seen as a very desirable feature on any system. “Centralised management of the cloud benefits the AI database,” says Drako. “In a project built around licence plate recognition (LPR), for example, all the data goes up to the cloud into a single database, and the customer can get a mobile view of everything going on across the world. You can’t do that without the cloud. And AI for LPR is more accurate.” Uncanny Vision’s targeted focus on AI for video surveillance applications was one factor that attracted Eagle Eye Networks to make the acquisition, says Drako. In contrast, some other companies have embraced broader applications of video AI. Uncanny Vision also has more customers using their system in real-world applications than competitors. Finally, the acquisition will help to expand Eagle Eye Networks’ presence in the LPR market, where Uncanny Vision is especially strong. Improving business operations The 60 employees at Uncanny Vision are mostly engineers and programmers Uncanny Vision’s deep learning algorithms enable recognition, identification, and prediction, improving business operations, customer service, and site safety. Applications include smart parking, retail, smart cities, ATM monitoring, worker safety and perimeter security. The 60 employees at Uncanny Vision are mostly engineers and programmers. “These guys understand how to translate AI algorithms to run very efficiently on various types of hardware,” says Drako. “They optimise how they get the code to run so we can implement in the cloud cost-effectively. They do it at a modest cost to make it more accessible. They understand how to deploy software for high performance on low-cost hardware.” For Uncanny Vision, the new ownership provides more reach. “We have a huge channel and a huge brand,” says Drako. “They are strong technical guys who need a sales and solution channel.” Video analytics solutions Even in light of the acquisition, Eagle Eye Networks will continue to provide a selection of third-party AI and video analytics solutions to customers. Use of AI and video analytics is specific to the application and business needs of each customer. Use of AI and video analytics is specific to the application and business needs of each customer In addition to AI functionality, systems need a ‘business logic’ component that drives how that capability is integrated into a system. System needs vary widely by vertical market, and many third-party vendors are focused on a specific vertical and how AI can benefit that market. Recurring monthly revenue “Third parties can provide analytics and the business logic, which is different for a factory, an office building or for a drive-thru restaurant,” says Drako. “The market is looking for many solutions, and one company couldn’t own a majority of them.” To ensure flexibility, Eagle Eye Networks will accommodate third party solutions, deploy their own analytics, or leverage analytics embedded in cameras. For Eagle Eye Networks’ dealer and integrator customers, the expansion into AI presents a new opportunity for recurring monthly revenue (RMR) and provides greater value to customers. Drako says the impact of the acquisition will be global as AI applications grow in popularity worldwide.
Video is an enormous wellspring of unstructured data in the enterprise environment. Finding new ways to use video data requires easy access for analysis. Gone are the days when video was recorded just to be played back later. New computer capabilities can analyse video to provide business intelligence and trends, all of which requires that a lot of unstructured data be captured, stored and kept immediately accessible. It's a driving force for companies specialising in video storage such as Quantum, which is focused on storing and managing unstructured data, including video, photos, music and sound. Managing various analytics “Unstructured data is driving the massive growth in storage today, and video surveillance fits right in there,” says Jamie Lerner, CEO and President, Quantum. As data multiplies in business, matters of storing and accessing the data take on a larger profile. Especially challenging is meeting the need to store and access expanding amounts of unstructured data, such as video. Video is also part of a changing end-to-end architecture in the enterpriseWhereas 10 years ago, video surveillance was all about recording and playback, now the emphasis is much more on an end-to-end approach. In addition to capturing and playing back video, systems have to manage various analytics, archival and data retention aspects as well as recording. Video is also part of a changing end-to-end architecture in the enterprise, including hybrid, cloud and on-premise storage. Video surveillance industry Historically, structured data, such as financial information, was stored to allow future analytics. The same trend extends to unstructured data, such as video analytics. Quantum has expanded its video storage capabilities with acquisition this year of the video surveillance business of Pivot3, provider of a hyperconverged system that provides recording, analysis and seamlessly archives data on a converged platform that is less expensive and easier to manage. In acquiring Pivot3, Quantum is refocusing the smaller company on the video surveillance industry. “We are now focused 100% on surveillance and having the highest quality while being very cost-effective,” says Lerner. “The industry is ready for an IT-forward solution that is totally focused on surveillance. You can’t make a platform all things to all people.” Traditional security customers There is overlap in large stadiums and theme parks, where Lerner sees even more opportunity to expand Pivot3 will also help to expand Quantum’s customer base. The larger company has a history of serving customers in entertainment, movies, television and sports production. The addition of Pivot3’s 500 new customers in large surveillance, transportation and critical infrastructure markets will expand the mix. There is overlap in large stadiums and theme parks, where Lerner sees even more opportunity to expand. Pivot3 also helps to bridge the gap between traditional security customers and the information technology (IT) department. “Pivot3 has a reputation as simple to use,” says Lerner. “My belief is that physical security can run separately [from IT] until you reach a certain size, then IT has to be involved. Pivot3 gives IT people in the security space a product that is well formed and fits into an IT strategy. They are not undertaking a piece of equipment that will be a burden.” Physical security presence Customers expect their infrastructure vendors to provide systems that allow them to “Set it and forget it,” says Lerner. It’s one of the big advantages of cloud computing and also central to Quantum’s approach with their traditional products. “At the end of the day, you want to run a hospital, for example, so you want your systems to be easy to use,” says Lerner. The Pivot3 acquisition will also allow Quantum to expand their physical security presence more broadly and globally. Previously, the geographic reach of Pivot3 was limited by the high cost of placing personnel in diverse locations. Under Quantum, which has been serving global companies for 40 years, the problem disappears. “Quantum has global support on all continents and in more countries,” says Lerner. “It’s a higher level of support, given size and legacy of our organisation.”
A new generation of video cameras is poised to boost capabilities dramatically at the edge of the IP network, including more powerful artificial intelligence (AI) and higher resolutions, and paving the way for new applications that would have previously been too expensive or complex. Technologies at the heart of the coming new generation of video cameras are Ambarella’s newest systems on chips (SoCs). Ambarella’s CV5S and CV52S product families are bringing a new level of on-camera AI performance and integration to multi-imager and single-imager IP cameras. Both of these SoCs are manufactured in the ‘5 nm’ manufacturing process, bringing performance improvements and power savings, compared to the previous generation of SoCs manufactured at ‘10nm’. CV5S and CV52S AI-powered SoCs The CV5S, designed for multi-imager cameras, is able to process, encode and perform advanced AI on up to four imagers at 4Kp30 resolution, simultaneously and at less than 5 watts. This enables multi-headed camera designs with up to four 4K imagers looking at different portions of a scene, as well as very high-resolution, single-imager cameras of up to 32 MP resolution and beyond. The CV52S, designed for single-imager cameras with very powerful onboard AI, is the next-generation of the company’s successful CV22S mainstream 4K camera AI chip. This new SoC family quadruples the AI processing performance, while keeping the same low power consumption of less than 3 watts for 4Kp60 encoding with advanced AI processing. Faster and ubiquitous AI capabilities Ambarella’s newest AI vision SoCs for security, the CV5S and CV52S, are competitive solutions" “Security system designers desire higher resolutions, increasing channel counts, and ever faster and more ubiquitous AI capabilities,” explains John Lorenz, Senior Technology and Market Analyst, Computing, at Yole Développement (Yole), a French market research firm. John Lorenz adds, “Ambarella’s newest AI vision SoCs for security, the CV5S and CV52S, are competitive solutions for meeting the growing demands of the security IC (integrated circuit) sector, which our latest report forecasts to exceed US$ 4 billion by 2025, with two-thirds of that being chips with AI capabilities.” Edge AI vision processors Ambarella’s new CV5S and CV52S edge AI vision processors enable new classes of cameras that would not have been possible in the past, with a single SoC architecture. For example, implementing a 4x 4K multi-imager with AI would have traditionally required at least two SoCs (at least one for encoding and one for AI), and the overall power consumption would have made those designs bulky and prohibitively expensive. By reducing the number of required SoCs, the CV5S enables advanced camera designs such as AI-enabled 4x 4K imagers at price points much lower than would have previously been possible. “What we are usually trying to do with our SoCs is to keep the price points similar to the previous generations, given that camera retail prices tend to be fairly fixed,” said Jerome Gigot, Ambarella's Senior Director of Marketing. 4K multi-imager cameras “However, higher-end 4K multi-imager cameras tend to retail for thousands of dollars, and so even though there will be a small premium on the SoC for the 2X improvement in performance, this will not make a significant impact to the final MSRP of the camera,” adds Jerome Gigot. In addition, the overall system cost might go down, Gigot notes, compared to what could be built today because there is no longer a need for external chips to perform AI, or extra components for power dissipation. The new chips will be available in the second half of 2021, and it typically takes about 12 to 18 months for Ambarella’s customers (camera manufacturers) to produce final cameras. Therefore, the first cameras, based on these new SoCs, should hit the market sometime in the second half of 2022. Reference boards for camera manufacturers The software on these new SoCs is an evolution of our unified Linux SDK" As with Ambarella’s previous generations of edge AI vision SoCs for security, the company will make available reference boards to camera manufacturers soon, allowing them to develop their cameras based on the new CV5S and CV52S SoC families. “The software on these new SoCs is an evolution of our unified Linux SDK that is already available on our previous generations SoCs, which makes the transition easy for our customers,” said Jerome Gigot. Better crime detection Detecting criminals in a crowd, using face recognition and/or licence plate recognition, has been a daunting challenge for security, and one the new chips will help to address. “Actually, these applications are one of the main reasons why Ambarella is introducing these two new SoC families,” said Jerome Gigot. Typically, resolutions of 4K and higher have been a smaller portion of the security market, given that they came at a premium price tag for the high-end optics, image sensor and SoC. Also, the cost and extra bandwidth of storing and streaming 4K video were not always worth it for the benefit of just viewing video at higher resolution. 4K AI processing on-camera The advent of on-camera AI at 4K changes the paradigm. By enabling 4K AI processing on-camera, smaller objects at longer distances can now be detected and analysed without having to go to a server, and with much higher detail and accuracy compared to what can be done on a 2 MP or 5 MP cameras. This means that fewer false alarms will be generated, and each camera will now be able to cover a longer distance and wider area, offering more meaningful insights without necessarily having to stream and store that 4K video to a back-end server. “This is valuable, for example, for traffic cameras mounted on top of high poles, which need to be able to see very far out and identify cars and licence plates that are hundreds of meters away,” said Jerome Gigot. The advent of on-camera AI at 4K changes the paradigm Enhanced video analytics and wider coverage “Ambarella’s new CV5S and CV52S SoCs truly allow the industry to take advantage of higher resolution on-camera for better analytics and wider coverage, but without all the costs typically incurred by having to stream high-quality 4K video out 24/7 to a remote server for offline analytics,” said Jerome Gigot. He adds, “So, next-generation cameras will now be able to identify more criminals, faces and licence plates, at longer distances, for an overall lower cost and with faster response times by doing it all locally on-camera.” Deployment in retail applications Retail environments can be some of the toughest, as the cameras may be looking at hundreds of people at once Retail applications are another big selling point. Retail environments can be some of the toughest, as the cameras may be looking at hundreds of people at once (e.g., in a mall), to provide not only security features, but also other business analytics, such as foot traffic and occupancy maps that can be used later to improve product placement. The higher resolution and higher AI performance, enabled by the new Ambarella SoCs, provide a leap forward in addressing those scenarios. In a store setup, a ceiling-mounted camera with four 4K imagers can simultaneously look at the cashier line on one side of the store, sending alerts when a line is getting too long and a new cashier needs to be deployed, while at the same time looking at the entrance on the other side of the store, to count the people coming in and out. This leaves two additional 4K imagers for monitoring specific product aisles and generating real-time business analytics. Use in cashier-less stores Another retail application is a cashier-less store. Here, a CV5S or CV52S-based camera mounted on the ceiling will have enough resolution and AI performance to track goods, while the customer grabs them and puts them in their cart, as well as to automatically track which customer is purchasing which item. In a warehouse scenario, items and boxes moving across the floor could also be followed locally, on a single ceiling-mounted camera that covers a wide area of the warehouse. Additionally, these items and boxes could be tracked across the different imagers in a multi-headed camera setup, without the video having to be sent to a server to perform the tracking. Updating on-camera AI networks Another feature of Ambarella’s SoCs is that their on-camera AI networks can be updated on-the-fly, without having to stop the video recording and without losing any video frames. So, for example in the case of a search for a missing vehicle, the characteristics of that missing vehicle (make, model, colour, licence plate) can be sent to a cluster of cameras in the general area, where the vehicle is thought to be missing, and all those cameras can be automatically updated to run a live search on that specific vehicle. If any of the cameras gets a match, a remote operator can be notified and receive a picture, or even a live video feed of the scene. Efficient traffic management With the CV52S edge AI vision SoC, those decisions can be made locally at each intersection by the camera itself Relating to traffic congestion, most big cities have thousands of intersections that they need to monitor and manage. Trying to do this from one central location is costly and difficult, as there is so much video data to process and analyse, in order to make those traffic decisions (to control the traffic lights, reverse lanes, etc.). With the CV52S edge AI vision SoC, those decisions can be made locally at each intersection by the camera itself. The camera would then take actions autonomously (for example, adjust traffic-light timing) and only report a status update to the main traffic control centre. So now, instead of having one central location trying to manage 1,000 intersections, a city can have 1,000 smart AI cameras, each managing its own location and providing updates and metadata to a central server. Superior privacy Privacy is always a concern with video. In this case, doing AI on-camera is inherently more private than streaming the video to a server for analysis. Less data transmission means fewer points of entry for a hacker trying to access the video. On Ambarella’s CV5S and CV52S SoCs, the video can be analysed locally and then discarded, with just a signature or metadata of the face being used to find a match. No actual video needs to be stored or transmitted, which ensures total privacy. In addition, the chips contain a very secure hardware cyber security block, including OTP memory, Arm TrustZones, DRAM scrambling and I/O virtualisation. This makes it very difficult for a hacker to replace the firmware on the camera, providing another level of security and privacy at the system level. Privacy Masking Another privacy feature is the concept of privacy masking. This feature enables portions of the video (say a door or a window) to be blocked out, before being encoded in the video stream. The blocked portions of the scene are not present in the recorded video, thus providing a privacy option for cameras that are facing private areas. “With on-camera AI, each device becomes its own smart endpoint, and can be reconfigured at will to serve the specific physical security needs of its installation,” said Jerome Gigot, adding “The possibilities are endless, and our mission as an SoC maker is really to provide a powerful and easy-to-use platform, complete with computer-vision tools, that enable our customers and their partners to easily deploy their own AI software on-camera.” Physical security in parking lots With a CV5S or CV52S AI-enabled camera, the camera will be able to cover a much wider portion of the parking lot One example is physical security in a parking lot. A camera today might be used to just record part of the parking lot, so that an operator can go back and look at the video if a car were broken into or some other incident occurred. With a CV5S or CV52S AI-enabled camera, first of all, the camera will be able to cover a much wider portion of the parking lot. Additionally, it will be able to detect the licence plates of all the cars going in and out, to automatically bill the owners. If there is a special event, the camera can be reprogrammed to identify VIP vehicles and automatically redirect them to the VIP portion of the lot, while reporting to the entrance station or sign how many parking spots are available. It can even tell the cars approaching the lot where to go. Advantages of using edge AI vision SoCs Jerome Gigot said, “The possibilities are endless and they span across many verticals. The market is primed to embrace these new capabilities. Recent advances in edge AI vision SoCs have brought about a period of change in the physical security space. Companies that would have, historically, only provided security cameras, are now getting into adjacent verticals such as smart retail, smart cities and smart buildings.” He adds, “These changes are providing a great opportunity for all the camera makers and software providers to really differentiate themselves by providing full systems that offer a new level of insights and efficiencies to, not only the physical security manager, but now also the store owner and the building manager.” He adds, “All of these new applications are extremely healthy for the industry, as they are growing the available market for cameras, while also increasing their value and the economies of scale they can provide. Ambarella is looking forward to seeing all the innovative products that our customers will build with this new generation of SoCs.”
Hanwha Techwin America, a global supplier of IP and analogue video surveillance solutions, has announced that Army and Navy Academy, a college preparatory military boarding school in California, has upgraded its security infrastructure with Hanwha security cameras. Located on a 23-acre beach-front property, the Army and Navy Academy is home to more than 300 students and employs more than 140 faculty and staff members. Two-fold surveillance upgrade According to Jeffrey Gibson, a system with analytics to keep a close watch on the campus could act as a force multiplier With a commitment to continuously adapt and improve, the Academy developed a strategic plan that focused on supporting the long-term success of their cadets. When the school began building and renovating facilities, they included an upgrade to their technology and physical security system. With a two-fold approach, the school first needed to replace their existing, out-of-date analogue camera system. Second, they needed a system that could keep up with current technology. According to Jeffrey Gibson, Assistant Commandant, Operations, Safety, and Security at the Academy, a system with analytics to keep a close watch on the campus could act as a force multiplier. Hanwha security cameras with Wisenet WAVE deployed After an extensive vetting process, the school deployed a video surveillance solution comprised of Hanwha cameras integrated with Wisenet WAVE, a highly customisable and reliable IP-based video management system (VMS). Integrating the Hanwha security cameras using the Wisenet WAVE IP-based VMS made it possible to create a video surveillance solution that was exclusively tailored to the campus’ specific needs. The Academy was able to quickly train security personnel as required, considering the WAVE video management system (VMS) is extremely intuitive and easy to use. Multi-sensor, multi-directional PTZ cameras installed The Army and Navy Academy now has a total of 141 cameras, including PNM-9081VQ multi-sensor, multi-directional cameras for covering wide areas, which allows them to use fewer cameras while seeing more. They have also installed PNM-9320VQP multi-sensor, multi-directional PTZ cameras for zooming in and for covering long distances. Additionally, to be able to effectively monitor between buildings and cover their coastline, the Academy chose PNM-9020V multi-sensor 180° cameras. In-camera and VMS analytics features By taking advantage of the in-camera and VMS analytics available in their new system, the security teams at the Academy can now monitor internal and external areas with high precision and efficiency. The primary cameras installed focus on higher priority, greater risk areas, while the VMS analytics keeps track of the rest of the areas in the campus. Perimeter protection with line crossing analytics With the surveillance system upgrade, most of the campus perimeter is now protected using line crossing analytics As a result of the surveillance system upgrade, most of the campus perimeter is now protected using line crossing analytics. With Hanwha cameras installed above the fence, the system sends an alert to the Security Operations Centre (SOC), if it detects something crossing the fence in either direction. Once the system pulls up the camera feeds, operators can see if it’s a false alarm and then decide whether or not to dispatch a security team or call local police. Enhanced students, faculty and staff safety The security team has developed a strategy for inside the fence as well that allows them to focus on specific areas that have higher traffic at specific times of the day. The in-camera analytics looks at the low-traffic areas. If the camera detects movement, the Security Operations Centre is alerted and can then determine whether or not to send personnel. Because the new Hanwha security system provides both coverage and analytics, the Army and Navy Academy’s security team is able to focus on what matters most, the safety of students, faculty and staff.
Hanwha Techwin America, a global supplier of IP and analogue video surveillance solutions, announced that Anaheim Union High School District (AUHSD), one of the largest school districts in California, has strengthened its security infrastructure with a district-wide solution that includes 1,250 Hanwha Techwin Q series cameras across 20 different locations. Anaheim Union High School District Located just outside of Los Angeles, AUHSD is a public-school district serving portions of the Orange County cities of Anaheim, Buena Park, Cypress, La Palma and Stanton and has an estimated 2,900 employees in 20 different facilities. In total, it serves approximately 29,000 students from grades 7 to 12. Despite its size and expanse, the district was lacking a robust security camera system that could allow administrators to monitor or document incidents on campus. “Other than a few sites with some DVR-based systems, we did not have any security cameras,” explained Erik Greenwood, Chief Technology Officer for AUHSD. IP security cameras installed AUHSD decided to strengthen its security infrastructure with a district-wide solution Additionally, as the district continued to grow, so did the seriousness of some of its security issues. After several security incidents and school shootings at other campuses across the U.S., the district faced mounting concerns from the community. AUHSD decided to strengthen its security infrastructure with a district-wide solution that would include IP security cameras at its centre. AUHSD officials collaborated with school principals, administrative staff, and local police departments to identify key areas where cameras should be placed, such as gathering points for students and the buildings’ main entrances and exits, as well as what specifications the system should have to produce viable footage for law enforcement. Wisenet Q series 4MP cameras The district brought on CA-based integrator, HCI Systems Inc., which recommended Hanwha Techwin’s QNV-7080R 4MP Network IR Vandal-Resistant Cameras. The Wisenet Q series 4MP cameras enable high-resolution monitoring with clear images, and the innovative hallway view feature maximises the area of surveillance in narrow locations, such as school corridors. In addition, these Q series cameras are equipped with IR function, enabling clear, sharp images in dimly lit environments and during the night. Robust set of technical specifications According to Greenwood, the Hanwha cameras were chosen as the key part of the system for several reasons. He said, “We had a very robust set of technical specifications in our RFP, and the image quality, frame rate and light specifications of the Hanwha cameras matched our requirements.” In addition to their rich feature set, the Hanwha camera configuration presented a streamlined solution. Greenwood further stated, “We didn't have a large quantity of different camera models which meant we didn’t need to keep stock of all sorts of lenses and other accessories. The committee liked that approach from a troubleshooting and ongoing maintenance standpoint.” Vandal resistance The vandal-resistant features of the Hanwha cameras were also a big factor in their decision process The vandal-resistant features of the Hanwha cameras were also a big factor in their decision process since the camera domes can easily be cleaned or swapped without having to replace the entire camera. The Hanwha cameras were installed throughout the district in entrances, exits, exterior restroom doors, staff work areas and in general meeting areas. They are helping the district keep eyes on campus vandalism, graffiti, any other potential threats and, in some cases, even monitoring certain personnel issues, such as inappropriate use of school equipment. Campus surveillance When an incident is reported, administrators can quickly access and review the security footage to see what happened. In all, Greenwood said, “It's been a great project that involved everyone and the new cameras have some great qualities.” Now that the installation is complete, AUHSD is taking a closer look to see where there may still be some blind spots and exploring where they might benefit from potential expansion.
Places of leisure, where one spends one’s downtime, are public by design. Unlike a bank vault or power plant, they actively invite visitors. One can’t just lock them down and hope no one turns up. Equally, to ensure user and property safety, access must not be a free for all. Managing risk - separating authorised from unauthorised people and locations - is part of every site manager’s daily routine. Intelligent locking makes this workload a whole lot easier. Intelligent keys combine the powerful features of electronic access control with the convenience and familiarity of mechanical keys. In hugely diverse leisure settings across Europe, they already help managers do more with less. Everyone treasures their leisure. The right access solution can help one do it safely without putting a burden on those responsible for one’s security. We treasure our leisure. The right access solution can help us do it safely without putting a burden on those responsible for our security. Controlling access to outdoor sites and visitor attractions Obviously, for many leisure attractions, wired electronic security is not an option. Locations may be remote - far beyond the reach of mains electricity. Assets themselves may be outside. Thankfully, cabling is not essential for effective intelligent access control. Robust, battery-powered locking, backed by intuitive admin software one can access from anywhere, matches or exceeds the functionality of traditional wired access control. Padlocks built to withstand climate extremes integrate within one’s system exactly like standard interior locks. Intelligent electronic key systems are also budget friendly. Making the switch from mechanical security is not an all-or-nothing decision. The best intelligent key systems let one roll out gradually, as needs evolve and budgets allow. For example, the Llyn Brenig Reservoir and Visitor Centre in Wales attracts tens of thousands of tourists every year. Both mechanical and electromechanical locking protect a site which houses critical infrastructure and watersports facilities - with disparate security needs. Here electromechanical locking brings long-term cost savings to site owners Welsh Water, because locks no longer need to be changed when keys are lost. Permissions are simply deleted from the system software. In 2015, Twycross Zoo launched a £55 million, two-decade development plan. High on the agenda was a new intelligent key solution to replace a mechanical master-key system which was labour-intensive to administer. The new system’s flexibility has put zoo security managers in full control of their site. Only staff with the necessary authority and training can access animal enclosures. Carrying one programmable key able to open doors, windows and padlocks makes the security team’s rounds easier It’s simple for system administrators to issue time-defined user keys. These can permit vets or zookeepers access to enclosures for a specific time period outside regular hours - for example, in an emergency. When the period expires, the key no longer works and site integrity is automatically restored. Access control in the museum sector When Edvard Munch’s painting “The Scream” was stolen from an Oslo museum in 1994, thieves left a note which read: “Thanks for the poor security”. Securing museums - open spaces with priceless contents - presents one of security’s biggest challenges. Around 50,000 artworks are stolen every year, according to some estimates. Adding further complexity, many museums are located within historic properties. The building itself may be integral to the attraction - and come with strict heritage protections. Any new locking installation must make minimal mess. For this reason, wireless is increasingly the preferred choice. Wireless access systems based on robust, key-operated locking, rather than cards and other keyless credentials, combine a familiar technology (the metal key) with the intelligence to keep staff and collections safe. Carrying one programmable key able to open doors, cabinets, windows and padlocks makes the security team’s rounds easier. It also minimises the number of keys in circulation - with obvious security benefits. Companion software makes key tracking straightforward: one always knows who exactly is carrying credentials, can refine or amend those permissions quickly and order a full audit trail on demand. And these locks are discreet enough to maintain the property’s appearance. Museum access control in action London’s Design Museum needed access control designed to protect high-value assets and exhibits. Devices here protect a contemporary site with three galleries, a restaurant/café and an events space, with 100 permanent staff and hundreds (sometimes thousands) of daily visitors. The building has multiple door sizes and must meet British Standards compliance. Installation was easy and wire-free, because encrypted electronics inside CLIQ locks are powered by the standard batteries Electromechanical locks now control access through 56 doors, forming part of a security ecosystem which incorporates traditional mechanical locks, too. Using intuitive management software, security managers ensure every staff member accesses only the right areas. Contractors are issued with temporary programmable keys, which saves time formerly wasted escorting them around the building. The system the Design Museum chose - CLIQ® from ASSA ABLOY - also enables integration with third-party cloud-based solutions, for control via a single, central management interface. The delicate balance between protecting a precious building and guarding its contents sets a major challenge. Security and access control must be “subtle, but ever present,” according to one former moderator of the Museum Security Network. Invasive installation, showy or inappropriately designed devices and components cannot be considered. This was the checklist facing France’s Musée Maurice Denis: the museum is inside a listed 17th-century monument, so they turned to CLIQ access control technology for a solution. Drawing on extensive experience in the heritage sector, ASSA ABLOY delivered security without disrupting the building aesthetic. Installation was easy and wire-free, because encrypted electronics inside CLIQ locks are powered by the standard batteries inside every programmable key. No further power supply is needed at the door. Around 70 robust, hard-wearing cylinders and padlocks now secure doors and windows inside and outside the main building; waterproof padlocks protect CCTV camera housing on the exterior. Every employee receives access to relevant areas via a single CLIQ key, which administrators program with only the appropriate permissions. Insurance compliance is another major concern in the heritage sector. Indeed, insurers for 17th-century warship Vasa demand Sweden’s highest level of locking: Class 3. Yet the Vasamuseet’s access system must also allow 1.2 million annual visitors to move around freely, while keeping exhibits safe. To upgrade an existing mechanical system, around 700 interior door cylinders were equipped with CLIQ Remote electromechanical technology. Museum staff used to carry heavy chains with ten or more keys. Now facility managers can amend the access rights of everyone’s single CLIQ key at any time, even remotely, using the CLIQ Web Manager. It’s easy to issue contractors such as carpenters with access rights scheduled to end automatically as soon as their work is complete. Security for shopping and indoor leisure sites The electronics inside CLIQ locks are powered by the standard battery inside every key, not mains electricity According to one study completed two decades ago, one spends 87% of one’s time indoors. The number is probably higher now - and includes a huge chunk of one’s leisure time. Large retail multiplexes like Festival Place in the UK are a popular destination. Here over 170 shops, a cinema, sports centre and restaurants have an ever-changing roster of permanent staff, cleaners and out-of-hours contractors. Every person requires secure entry on demand. The public also needs open access for 18 hours every day. Yet a single lost mechanical key could become a security problem for all users and tenants. Installing 100 CLIQ electromechanical cylinders drastically cut the burden of mechanical key management. Now, cleaners and maintenance workers carry an intelligent key which unlocks specific doors for a pre-defined time period. Using simple online admin software, site managers can immediately de-authorise and reissue a lost key or amend any key’s permissions. Generating a comprehensive audit trail - who accessed which lock, and when - takes a couple of mouse clicks. CLIQ also cuts Festival Place operational costs. The electronics inside CLIQ locks are powered by the standard battery inside every key, not mains electricity. Installation was wireless, a huge saving on potentially expensive electrical work. At Festival Place and wherever one gathers to enjoy leisure - indoors or outside - CLIQ enables easy access control for all openings with just a simple, single, programmable key. To learn how you can put CLIQ® intelligent key technology to work in agile, flexible, secure public services, download a free introductory guide at https://campaigns.assaabloyopeningsolutions.eu/eCLIQ
Resilience and efficiency have become watchwords for the public institutions, before, during and after the ongoing health crisis. In delivering services fit for the modern world, these institutions need more than just innovation and accountability. They require flexibility and agility, too, including in how they approach security. The lock and key have enjoyed public trust for a long time. Keys were used in Ancient Egypt and Assyria, and warrant a mention in the Christian Old Testament. As a technology the key is familiar and proven, user-friendly and dependable. It can also be inflexible and time-consuming to manage. The security challenges of delivering public services do not stand still, but standard mechanical keys cannot move with oneself. Filtering access intelligently and dynamically has become part of security’s job description. Yet there is no need to dispose of the key altogether. One can adapt it, rather than throw it out. Intelligent, programmable keys combine the powerful features of electronic access control with the convenience of a mechanical key. They are keys, familiar and user-friendly… but evolved. When the key has a brain, one can do more with less. These efficiencies are critical in a world where demands on the public institutions are at levels not seen in generations. Cut workload and solve the problem of lost keys One [lost] key cost from €3,000 to €4,000 for changing cylinders and replacing the keys" Lost keys present mechanical security with its most intractable problem. When a key goes missing, time and budget are expended to remedy the situation. Extensive rekeying and reissuing to relevant keyholders are complex and expensive. Programmable keys, however, solve the problem quickly. The French town of Villiers-le-Bel, north of Paris, faced these familiar key management challenges. Each person in their Municipal Technical Centre carried approximately 40 physical keys. If one was lost or stolen, all compromised cylinders had to be changed. To prevent unauthorised access, all the keys had to be replaced, too, at great expense. Key duplication costs were mounting. “One [lost] key cost from €3,000 to €4,000 for changing cylinders and replacing the keys,” explains Fabrice Girard, Territorial Technician at the town’s Municipal Technical Centre. To fix this expensive lost key problem, Villiers-le-Bel city administrators chose to combine trusted mechanical security with new electromechanical key-operated locking, all managed within the same flexible, wireless access control system. Now lost or stolen electronic keys are cancelled instantly using secure cloud software which works inside a standard browser, no software installation required. Administrators can program access rights for any key, padlock or cylinder. They filtre access to specific sites and doors according to the precise requirements of every municipal employee. Keep residents safe in their homes In Aalborg, Denmark, around 3,000 citizens in home care have programmable locking cylinders installed at their front door. This replaces a cumbersome mechanical master-key system. Aalborg’s installation was tailored to meet the needs of this vulnerable group of city residents. Certified technicians simply replaced each old cylinder with a programmable cylinder If a home care resident loses their key, its access rights can be deleted from the system without the need for a lock replacement — keeping the keyholder’s home safe and saving the city time and money on rekeying. Managing Aalborg’s system is straightforward. Lock installation was quick and easy: certified technicians simply replaced each old cylinder with a programmable cylinder — with no wiring and no major alterations to the door. Aalborg’s fire brigade quickly took over the maintenance process. Brigade staff now grant or revoke access, and tailor permissions for different users or locations according to defined needs. In Skellefteå, Sweden, electromechanical locking has given local firefighters faster, safer access to any building. To speed up emergency response times and improve firefighter safety, the local service fitted houses with secure façade key cabinets.More rapid response means a better chance to prevent a fire spreading Property keys are stored inside the cabinets, so authorised firefighters get rapid building access if there is a fire. When the emergency call comes, firefighters update their individual, programmable key at the station or while on the move, using a remote key updater kept in the fire engine. There’s no longer any need for fire stations to hold multiple sets of keys or for off-site firefighters to divert to the station to collect the right key. More rapid response means a better chance to prevent a fire spreading. Safety is improved for everyone, Skellefteå residents at home and firefighters at work. Clear workflow bottlenecks in public housing With crime against empty properties on the rise, public authorities in the English city of Rotherham aimed to minimise the time a council house stands vacant. However, workers from multiple departments require access to prepare a property for a new tenant. Passing keys securely between all relevant staff members was a major cause of delay. Security managers issue the precise permissions which every staff member needs At Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council (RMBC), intelligent key technology helped streamline these workflows, upgrading security and saving money at the same time. RMBC identified physical key handover as a major bottleneck in their workflow. They needed a solution to speed up the process. Now, each relevant RMBC staff member is issued with their own programmable key. Using simple online software, security managers issue the precise permissions which every staff member needs. The access rights of any key can be amended or revoked at any time. Physical handover of mechanical keys, and the time and money spent coordinating this process, has been eliminated. Preserve the fabric of historic buildings, and the design integrity of new spaces Building type can make a big difference to the access control one chooses. Public spaces inside protected heritage buildings often cannot opt for card- and reader-based access control. Here, wireless electronic cylinders which simply replace existing mechanical locks solve the problem, preserving doors which may be centuries old. Intelligent key security is hardly noticeable for the library’s many visitors The issue of aesthetics also affects modern public spaces, albeit differently. In Stuttgart, innovative design was a key element of the city’s new library building. Door security should be discreet and not disrupt the vision of Korean architect, Eun Young Yi. This was the first public building in Stuttgart’s Europaviertel, a unique creation with a double façade with glass bricks, a brightly lit atrium four storeys high, and public entrances on all four sides. Almost as soon as it opened, the building was declared an architectural icon — “instantly one of the world’s most beautiful libraries.” Intelligent key security is hardly noticeable for the library’s many visitors, yet critical for protecting Stuttgart’s precious public heritage Save time and money managing keys for a mobile workforce Many public services involve managing and directing a mobile or contractor workforce. Mileage expense mounts up when workers must return to base to collect keys or update their access rights. With a Bluetooth-powered solution, everyone carries their own programmable key Mobile workers use more fuel and increase a carbon footprint. One makes a business more sustainable quickly if one reduces the mileage one travels. Reducing miles while maintaining security is not easy, if one relies on mechanical keys to secure remote or dispersed sites. Bluetooth-enabled intelligent keys eliminate the need for workers to return to headquarters to collect or return a mechanical key. With a Bluetooth-powered solution, everyone carries their own programmable key and keeps its access rights up to date on the move, simply by making an encrypted connection to a secure smartphone app — meaning fewer miles driven and less money wasted on unnecessary fuel. One technology powers all the solutions All the installations referenced above — and many, many more across the full spectrum of public services — run on the same technology: CLIQ® from ASSA ABLOY. CLIQ combines electronic and mechanical security in a range of wireless cylinder applications, including a full range of mechatronic and electronic cylinders and padlocks. CLIQ locks are installed without wires: every cylinder’s power is supplied by a battery inside the CLIQ key. These keys are physically identical and programmable by a system administrator using a desktop updater; by keyholders with a portable programmer; or in the case of CLIQ Connect Bluetooth-enabled keys, via an encrypted connection to a secure smartphone app, minimising both wasted journeys and unnecessary social contact between workers and office staff. Intuitive software makes it simple to manage access rights, enable and disable keys and customise access schedules, on site or on the go. To learn how you can put CLIQ® intelligent key technology to work in agile, flexible, secure public services, download a free introductory guide at https://campaigns.assaabloyopeningsolutions.eu/eCLIQ
Established by the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, ADA University is a state higher education institution engaged in the delivery of undergraduate and graduate degree programs in addition to research advancement. The university started the construction of a new teaching building in 2017. Its multimedia classroom required 40 square meters of LED screens to provide students with advanced and modern teaching equipment. Spread spectrum VFE technology 42 m2 PHSA1.6-MH indoor fine pixel LED screens from Dahua Technology were seamlessly spliced and installed at the multimedia classroom of ADA University. The solution features single control chip with only one IC. The product adopts spread spectrum VFE technology to achieve higher refresh rate, while its wide colour range provides excellent high restoration and color uniformity. It can also achieve high contrast, low failure rate and low light reduction. The brightness of the LED screens can be adjusted within 50-800 nits without losing grey levels With wide current regulation technology, the brightness of the LED screens can be adjusted within 50-800 nits without losing grey levels, which is applicable in different environments. A centralised power supply was also deployed to lower power consumption. In addition to providing the devices, staff from Dahua Delivery Department were also responsible for on-site installation, offering operation and after-sales training to both distributor and staff of ADA University. First LED screen project The customer was very satisfied with the successful delivery of the project. The students of ADA University can now enjoy vivid and colorful videos and images through the LED screen, bringing a pleasant viewing experience for teachers and students. As the first LED screen project in Azerbaijan, Dahua Technology’s complete solution and excellent service from pre-sales to after-sales greatly impressed the customer, and they expressed their desire to choose Dahua Technology in their other similar projects in the future. “Dahua Technology has a professional technical team, which provides us with high-quality service. We are very satisfied with Dahua Technology’s products. The professional training provided to us is very helpful for our operation and maintenance. We believe that we will continue to cooperate with Dahua Technology in the future,” said Alekberov Mukhdar, Electrical Engineer of ADA University.
Around 7,000 people pass through the Luminy faculty’s suburban campus every day. As part of a major project to modernise two buildings, university managers sought a retrofit-ready access control solution to upgrade security. Aperio locks University administrators selected Aperio locks to secure doors in the new buildings. With Aperio, facilities, the staff can deal with lost keys more efficiently. The laborious process of changing locks and reissuing keys — part of the daily workload with mechanical locking — vanishes. Luminy campus is equipped with 372 Aperio Electronic Cylinders & 42 Aperio Electronic Handles with built-in RFID readers The Luminy campus is now equipped with 372 Aperio electronic cylinders & 42 Aperio electronic handles with built-in RFID readers. Locks are integrated seamlessly, wirelessly and online with Luminy’s ARD access control system. One key goal was to deter theft, which was becoming a problem in teaching areas — especially those with computers. “Since we installed Aperio, we have not had a break-in,” says Cédric Lopez, Maintenance Manager at Luminy. Campus security and incident management In addition to theft deterrence, Aperio met broad, stringent criteria for the security upgrade. Staff and students carry individual access smart-cards. Doors and credentials are easily programmed and reprogrammed to accommodate everyone’s changing access needs. Luminy’s security team has complete control over access permissions and campus traffic — in real time. Because their new Aperio devices are integrated online, the staff can see a ‘live’ overview of the campus and respond proactively to incidents. Aperio is trusted to protect the most sensitive areas of the campus. “We have critical premises, including for the storage of chemicals, some with radioactive properties,” adds Lopez. Seamless integration with university’s scheduling system Aperio locks are built on an open platform for easy integration with the university’s scheduling system Aperio locks are built on an open platform, so they are flexible enough to integrate with the university’s room scheduling system. “Teachers are able to reserve their rooms. Students no longer have to wait for the teacher’s arrival, because they have access to the right rooms in defined time slots,” says Cédric Lopez. The credential students already carry automatically opens classroom doors, if they have pre-authorised access rights. For the facilities team, the ARD interface displays scheduling for all relevant rooms in real time. Aperio wireless technology Luminy site managers have already scheduled further real-time access control upgrades built around award-winning Aperio wireless technology. As Luminy staff discovered, the benefits of Aperio extend beyond just enhanced campus safety and student security. The Aperio for Universities Solution Guide explains how you can upgrade and streamline security at your campus. Learn more about Aperio® at https://campaigns.assaabloyopeningsolutions.eu/aperio-university
Round table discussion
Keeping prisoners safely housed is among the biggest challenges the security industry faces. Correctional applications of security technology are often more extreme and require a specialised mix of technologies. We asked our Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the video security and surveillance needs in prisons, and how well do technologies meet those needs? Are there any ethical qualms about selling to prisons?
A new generation of security professional is waiting in the wings. They will be faced with unprecedented challenges, as they seek to transform the security marketplace to the ‘next level’. Technology changes ensure the market will be very different 10 years from now and the fresh labour pool will need to be able to meet the host of new challenges. We asked our Expert Panel Roundtable: What exciting career opportunities in the security industry await the next generation?
Assembling security solutions has long been considered the role of the integrator, whose role is to pick and choose the best technology tools and then to assemble the complete system. However, more manufacturers are offering pre-integrated end-to-end solutions that include multiple elements from the same manufacturer, designed to work seamlessly together. At the end of the day, end users want to know: Whose role is it to provide security ‘solutions’ – the manufacturer or the integrator? We asked our Expert Panel Roundtable.
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