Hotels, leisure & entertainment security applications
The Abu Dhabi Global Market Square (ADGMS), located on Al Maryah Island, in the United Arab Emirate’s capital, Abu Dhabi, is a high-profile, architecturally compelling business and hospitality hub. Many of the most globally prestigious companies inhabit the buildings, in the award-winning financial centre. Abu Dhabi Global Market Square ADGMS also hosts frequent international dignitaries and large-scale public events, including the Abu Dhabi national New Year’s fireworks display. A...
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...
Reiknistofa Bankanna (RB) is a provider of mission-critical IT systems for Icelandic financial institutions, responsible for the country’s central clearance and settlement system and several multi-tenant core banking solutions. It also operates an e-invoicing and e-payment system for corporates and consumers. It is jointly owned by the three main Icelandic banks, two saving banks, the Icelandic Savings Bank Association, and the three main payment card processors in Iceland. RB’s cli...
The UK Government is consulting on plans to introduce a new law requiring operators of public spaces to consider the risk of a terrorist attack and take proportionate and reasonable measures to prepare for and protect the public from such an attack. Under the proposals outlined in the consultation document, those responsible for a publicly accessible location will have a ‘protect duty.’ The protect duty would apply to certain publicly accessible locations, widely defined as ‘a...
The Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari di Imola is a legendary place for every motoring enthusiast. Since 1953, the Emiliano-Romagnolo circuit is the beating heart of a land historically tied to speed and scene of epic sporting achievements and beyond. “A small Nürburgring, with same technical and spectacular resources and an ideal track length,” says Drake Enzo Ferrari, Founder of the iconic racing team and automotive company and to whom the autodrome was named after...
Traditional monitoring systems often face a myriad of challenges: excessive usage of white light just to capture colour images; ubiquitous background noise; complicated alarm accessories; and lack of integration with third-party alarm systems, just to name a few. In response to these issues, Dahua Technology, a world-leading video-centric smart IoT solution and service provider, has launched its upgraded Three-in-One Camera series – the TiOC 2.0. Aside from its Active Deterrence function,...
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.
JumpCloud announced JumpCloud Protect™, a one-touch multi-factor authentication (MFA) solution that makes it easy for IT admins to deploy and enforce MFA without adversely impacting end users. Available for iOS and Android devices, JumpCloud Protect enables simple and efficient “touch to verify” functionality for employees when accessing corporate IT resources authenticated by the JumpCloud Directory Platform. Mobile MFA app JumpCloud Protect is a fully featured mobile MFA app that allows employees authenticating into protected apps and resources to verify themselves directly from their corporate-issued or BYOD mobile device. JumpCloud Protect: Installs on both iOS and Android devices Simple “one-touch” accept or deny functionality to verify identity when accessing IT resources Alternate Time-based One-time Password (TOTP) token-generation capabilities for any JumpCloud authenticated resources or users’ personal online accounts requiring second-factor verification. Simplest verification solution “Our IT team is challenged with several requirements. Making employees happy and productive, reducing the total cost of equipping them with the right IT tools, and ensuring we are keeping the company secure while people are remote is our new normal,” said Randy Tanenhaus, IT Manager at ClassPass. “I like JumpCloud’s direction. JumpCloud Protect means we can give our employees the simplest verification solution on the market. Without disrupting their work, we really know it’s them. Further, I have been able to think about other critical priorities versus evaluating, buying, and integrating a 2FA solution into our identity strategy.” Identity and security in one place JumpCloud Protect will reduce the cost of maintaining a separate MFA solution “At Employee Zero, we’ve been implementing JumpCloud solutions for our clients for the past six years,” said James Martin, director at Employee Zero, an IT consultancy and managed service provider. “In that time, we have seen so many exciting advancements in features and value-adds to the platform. JumpCloud Protect is a major leap forward in keeping identity and security in one easy-to-manage place for both the end-user and for us as IT support. JumpCloud Protect will reduce the cost of maintaining a separate MFA solution for our clients whilst making things more streamlined.” JumpCloud Protect benefits In addition to its extensive feature set, JumpCloud Protect provides several benefits for customers of JumpCloud at any package level, and the employees and IT and security teams that manage access and security controls at these companies: Secure all endpoints: JumpCloud Protect will extend beyond the JumpCloud user portal and cloud applications, to also protect on-premise applications, Mac, Windows, and Linux desktops, VPN and wireless networks, and servers. Reduce IT cost: JumpCloud Protect is included with all packages at no extra cost. This includes any customers of the JumpCloud Free package. Vendor consolidation: Admins will no longer have to manage third-party MFA or authenticator apps and save on their associated licensing and integration costs. JumpCloud Protect is natively combined with the JumpCloud Directory Platform. Integrated with JumpCloud’s Conditional Access “step-up” authentication policies: For customers of JumpCloud’s Platform Plus package, JumpCloud Protect adds an extra layer of security by providing an integrated MFA solution with the package’s Conditional Access Policies, triggering verification of an identity based upon a variety of parameters, such as device trust, location, network trust, and application-specific step-up challenges. Ease of use: Standard MFA methods are often viewed as cumbersome for end-users such as the insertion of six-digit token numbers into authentication fields or combined with passwords. JumpCloud Protect provides a one-touch authentication method to provide employee convenience when challenged with verifying their identity. Easy-to-use solution “Most organisations struggle to find the balance of appropriate security levels and convenience for employees. Security and IT teams are looking for solutions that eliminate friction, without incurring additional costs in integration time, effort, and vendor management,” said Greg Keller, CTO at JumpCloud. “JumpCloud Protect gives IT and security teams a path to protection without irritating users or overcomplicating their infrastructure. Mobile push MFA is an easy-to-understand and easy-to-use solution for employees and simplifies IT and SecOps who can rely upon the same vendor they use for their identity and device management solutions with tightly integrated MFA solutions.” Domainless enterprise For IT admins with limited resources, the JumpCloud Directory Platform puts simple user management JumpCloud is redefining the directory to enable the domainless enterprise, where admins can secure every user and device from the cloud, without any legacy on-premise infrastructure or networking required. The announcement of JumpCloud Protect follows the recent Zero-Touch Enrollment release, which streamlines device and onboarding for organisations. Secure, and cost-effective user management The company just won the 2021 Cutting Edge in SMB Cybersecurity Global InfoSec award, was named one of America’s Best Startup Employers 2021 by Forbes, and named a finalist for the EdTech Awards in the Networking, Information Technology (IT), Connectivity, or Access Solution category. G2 acknowledged JumpCloud across several categories for Best Software of 2021, and nearly 700 IT admins have rated JumpCloud as a market leader in Cloud Directory Service Software, Privileged Access Management, Identity and Access Management (IAM), Single Sign-On (SSO) Software, User Provisioning, and Governance Tools. For IT admins with limited resources, the JumpCloud Directory Platform puts simple, secure, and cost-effective user management within reach by consolidating identity across any and all IT resources without the complexity of other enterprise solutions. Availability JumpCloud Protect is currently in an early access evaluation period with select customers and will launch in late Q2.
ComplyAdvantage, a data technology company transforming financial crime detection announced a new early-stage anti-money laundering (AML) program aimed at growth-focused startups called ComplyLaunch™. The program provides qualified startups with free access to the company’s award-winning AML and Know Your Customer (KYC) tools and resources needed to uncover and reduce the threat of money-laundering activities so they can onboard new customers with lower risk and greater trust. AML training and education In addition, ComplyAdvantage has partnered with the global financial crime compliance consultancy FINTRAIL to provide AML education and ongoing training for program participants. FINTRAIL is a recognised authority on financial crime prevention in financial technology (FinTech) and the application of regulatory technology (RegTech), working with industry-leading clients across the globe to transform, build, scale, and assure AFC compliance frameworks that are relevant for digital products. Why ComplyLaunch, why now? The impetus for ComplyLaunch was to prepare startups to take on money laundering The impetus for the program was to prepare startups to take on one of the biggest challenges their businesses will face, which is money laundering. If transacting startups want to maximise their competitive advantage with new or expanded services, then they need intelligent AML and risk management data solutions to prevent the unintended consequences of unknowingly onboarding criminal entities. Free access to AML As a serial entrepreneur, ComplyAdvantage founder and CEO Charles Delingpole has experienced first-hand the many challenges that startup teams face and that the early-stage prevention of money-laundering shouldn’t be one of them. As such, Delingpole believes that providing free access to ComplyAdvantage’s AML tools will allow more fintech startups to reach success faster by reducing the business exposure due to unforeseen financial crimes. “At ComplyAdvantage, we believe that free early access to AML tools and education on setting up a compliance program is a benefit to our entire fintech ecosystem,” said Charles Delingpole, founder, and CEO of ComplyAdvantage. Maintaining fintech integrity “By democratising access to best-in-class financial crime prevention tools, we are allowing fintech startups to not only match but exceed the compliance program standards of the largest, most regulated banks. ComplyLaunch is a very important program designed to maintain the integrity of Fintech insurgents by reducing the growing threat of financial crimes.” Startup collaborations The first startups to join ComplyLaunch include trustshare, a company that’s revolutionising escrow payments, and Juno a company that delivers comprehensive solutions to integrate multi-channel payment services with ERPs and e-Commerce platforms. “Because we’re focused on simplifying bank payments between friends, family, customers, and businesses it made complete sense for our team to join the ComplyLaunch program,” said Pete Bailey, founder, and CPO of Juno. “Partnering with ComplyAdvantage to implement their gold-standard AML detection solution means that we can onboard customers with greater confidence.” Criteria for applications Those early-stage fintech startups with no institutional funding are invited to apply for the program. To apply, applicants must meet the following criteria: Less than $1M in annual revenue Pre-seed - Seed stage A company website or web profile Less than 10 years old “We’re excited to join as a launch partner for ComplyLaunch and to provide program members with access to our world-class AML training”, said James Nurse, Managing Director of FINTRAIL EMEA. “There are future fintech unicorns waiting to grow and early money-laundering and risk prevention resources will only help them to reach their success, faster.” Helping emerging start-ups As a sign of growing community interest, the ComplyLaunch program will be promoted with the support of world-class organisations including the leading talent investor Entrepreneur First and Seccl an innovative technology platform providing outsourced custody for financial services firms looking to safeguard their clients' assets. "There has never been a greater time to start a fintech company and we've seen more and more of the world's most ambitious people wanting to startup in this space,” said Jonny Clifford, of Entrepreneur First. “With the growing complexity of financial service interdependencies, ComplyLaunch is a great idea at the perfect time to help these emerging, disruptive fintech startups to scale more easily and more confidently.” Early access to AML And finally, Max Rimple a Principal at Index Ventures and a lead investor in ComplyAdvantage also shared his thoughts on the program launch, "with the staggering amount of investment capital going into fintech and related financial services, it's important that startups have early access to intelligent AML and risk management tools so they can grow with integrity and confidence." ComplyLaunch is a starting point for fintech founders to safeguard their businesses from the risks of financial crimes "The ComplyLaunch program is a great starting point for fintech founders to safeguard their businesses from the risks of financial crimes. It's also good for their investors who appreciate that early compliance practices help to set the stage for future success." Risk Management ComplyAdvantage offers a true hyperscale financial risk insight and AML data solution that leverages machine learning and natural language processing to help regulated organisations manage their risk obligations and prevent financial crime. The company’s proprietary database is derived from millions of data points that provide dynamic, real-time insights across sanctions, watchlists, politically exposed persons, and negative news. This reduces dependence on manual review processes and legacy databases by up to 80% and improves how companies screen and monitor clients and transactions.
A security solutions developer, designer, and provider, Videcon, has launched their new Concept Pro ColourSmart camera range, providing clear full colour imagery 24 hours a day. The complete CCTV range combines Videcon’s Deep Learning technology and powerful software, to allow footage to always remain in colour with clear and crisp imagery, day, or night. ColourSmart Features The ColourSmart cameras have a larger lens and image sensor which allows them to let in as much light as possible, software that provides a crisp and clear image, and warm white light which will activate if there isn’t sufficient ambient lighting to keep the image in colour. Each camera is also equipped with Videcon’s innovative Deep Learning technology, which means that sensors focus only on events that matter and it can distinguish people and vehicles from other moving objects. Camera system for everyone Videcon Managing Director, Matt Rushall said, “We’re so excited to be launching our new Concept Pro ColourSmart range and we hope this is the start of our customers seeing their security in an entirely new way.” “Our team have been hard at work ensuring the cameras have the best colour imagery possible, along with our Deep Learning software and its compatibility with other security systems to make it a security system that’s for everyone at all times.”
Dahua Technology, with its award winning deep learning algorithms, proudly releases WizMind – a portfolio of solutions composed of project-oriented products including IPC, NVR, PTZ, XVR, thermal and software platforms, delivering precise, reliable and comprehensive AI solutions to verticals including government, retail, energy, finance and transportation. WizMind's human-orientated solutions Powered by AI and deep learning algorithms, WizMind provides comprehensive human-oriented solutions including facial recognition, privacy protection, human video metadata, people counting and stereo analysis, enabling rapid and precise reaction. In addition, it provides more precise and effective AI search to locate targets, generating various human data for business analysis. According to IHS, the total market value of professional video surveillance equipment will grow to $27.2 million by 2023 To protect portrait data, WizMind provides outstanding privacy protection. Based on deep learning algorithms, WizMind supports real-time mosaic masking of the human face or body detected in the monitoring area, which is needed in courtroom scenarios and may be valuable to retailers which can optimise their business through intelligent analysis of customer flow, recorded without violating privacy or GDPR. WizMind based on vehicles WizMind boasts multiple vehicle-based AI solutions, such as ANPR and vehicle metadata, illegal parking which provide more attributes of vehicles for easy control, quick search and business analysis. It is widely used in urban areas, residential community entrances, parking lots and toll stations. By extracting and comparing plate numbers with databases, ANPR helps managers of parking lots and city roads improve vehicle management efficiency with functions like Blacklist Alarm and VIP Recognition. ANPR also supports vehicle tracking, which helps police efficiently locate vehicles according to the crosschecking result. ANPR is able to recognise plate numbers in over 58 countries. WizMind with thermal technology WizMind combines deep learning algorithms with thermal imaging technology to help users achieve ultra-long-distance monitoring in harsh environments, non-contact temperature monitoring and early fire prevention. The Dahua WizMind series is compatible with mainstream third party technology partners With an accuracy of 0.3 degrees Celcius and a speed that monitors three people per second, Dahua’s High Accuracy Body Temperature Monitoring Solution has been widely and successfully applied within transportation hubs, financial institutions, commercial complexes, schools and other places all over the world, joining the global efforts in pandemic prevention and control. WizMind Ecosystem Initiating openness and collaboration, the Dahua WizMind series is compatible with mainstream third party technology partners, such as Milestone, AxxonSoft, ISS and others. Furthermore, WizMind Ecosystem provides the DHOP and sufficient API for our technology partners, enabling them to combine real AI joint solutions to our common customers, and a series of marketing activities will be engaged with our ecosystem partners. Dahua WizMind, a high-end AI series, aims to serve demanding scenarios in many vertical industries. With the mission of “enabling a safer society and smarter living”, Dahua Technology will continue to focus on “innovation, quality and service” to serve its partners and customers around the world.
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. The last few years were very productive for the company. The latest generation of the autonomous models, which outperform in efficiency, dozens of security cameras, were 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 centres, 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 past year has elevated consumer awareness about personal safety, from COVID-19 issues to social unrest, making safety top-of-mind and the need for personal safety solutions, even more prevalent. In addition, consumers spent more time at home, as schools closed, events were canceled and remote work increased. This prompted two major shifts that, in my opinion, most significantly opened the need for and raised the popularity of mobile safety solutions. Demand for grocery and food delivery apps surged Rise in use of app-based delivery services During the past 18 months, the use of app-based delivery services has skyrocketed During the past 18 months, the use of app-based delivery services has skyrocketed. With more use comes more interactions among strangers in homes and businesses, and while the majority of these moments are completely safe and convenient, incidents are happening, ranging from uncomfortable situations to physical assaults. And, with more delivery drivers on the road, there are going to be more accidents among gig-economy workers. Based on recent estimates, food and grocery delivery are expected to remain popular, even as we get back to normal life. High popularity of mobile security apps and wearables With more work shifting from stationary locations to working on-the-go, mobile security apps or wearables can be a lifeline in all sorts of situations. It’s important for these mobile safety products to be comprehensive, dynamic and designed to address the full range of people’s safety and security needs, from providing simple human reassurance to dispatching emergency help. Domestic violence cases increased According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, due to COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, domestic violence rose as a result of many victims being stuck at home with their abusers, while sheltering in place and working from home. Mobile safety apps, such as ADT’s SoSecure U.S. Attorneys General and other state-elected officials have endorsed mobile safety apps, like SoSecure by ADT These situations necessitate the need for discreet ways for victims to call for help. U.S. Attorneys General and other state-elected officials have endorsed mobile safety apps, like SoSecure by ADT, as a tool to help victims of domestic abuse, safely call for help, without alerting their abuser. Over the past year, the mobile safety app market has seen tremendous innovation, including more user-friendly ways to make SOS calls. Today, within a single app, a person can summon help hands-free, by saying a secret phrase, by text or by swiping a button. Extension of mobile safety into wearable devices And, users can connect with people trained to help in unsettling situations over video, which can be an effective deterrent and provide video evidence. We’ve also seen the extension of mobile safety into wearable devices, in order to make these devices more discreet and usable. There will always be some safety risks in our lives. However, the good news is there’s no need to live in a constant state of fear. The easiest, most direct way to be prepared and ready to ‘fight back’ is by having a personal safety tool in your pocket, a mobile safety app that is there, when you need it most.
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.”
Founded in 2010, Avolon is the third-largest aircraft leasing company in the world with 824 aircraft and 145 customers in 62 countries. Its new global headquarters in Dublin is comprised of 6,967 sq m (75,000 sq ft) of secure office space across six floors that houses its IT, catering, legal, and communications departments. Need for a centralised monitoring solution Avolon’s new premises in the upmarket Ballsbridge area of Dublin provided an opportunity for the company to rethink its approach to building security. Avolon was looking for an innovative, flexible solution that could be personalised to individuals, easily accessed, and managed remotely. Additional requirements included: the need to provide different levels of security clearance in different areas of the building, the ability to manage individual security clearances, the facilitation of access outside of the usual workday, and secure parking lot access for employees and visitors. As a global company, Avolon wanted a solution that could be deployed worldwide to provide a consistent experience for its employees, regardless of their location. HID’s flexible access control solution Powered by Seos® technology, the solution uses BLE and iCLASS® readers to create a secure access control solution Avolon partnered with systems integrator Summit Security Systems Ltd and deployed HID Mobile Access at its Dublin headquarters. Powered by Seos® technology, the solution uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and iCLASS® readers to create a secure, convenient, and flexible access control solution for its headquarters. The building’s security system enables credentials on smartphones via an app rather than on physical access cards and uses iCLASS SE® mobile-enabled readers installed at points of access. Key benefits of a mobile access system include: Employees are less likely to forget smartphones, which they always carry than an access badge Security clearances are more efficient and easily changed because security status is provisioned to an app A cloud-based central control system provides security administrators with easy oversight, access to a complete set of metrics, and the ability to manage a network of premises around the globe Employing various access control measures Avolon has implemented a range of different solutions for different parts of its premises that can vary by time of day. For example, elevators utilise access control measures to ease the flow of people within the building during work hours, while assuring that after-hours access is more controlled. Employees simply twist their iOS or Android™ phones when they approach the parking readers to gain entry The ease-of-use and security also extend to the parking lot, which benefits from HID’s “Twist and Goes” feature. Employees simply twist their iOS or Android™ phones when they approach the parking readers to gain entry. Avolon encourages its employees to cycle to work and has extended mobile access to a secure employee bike parking area that links directly into the shower and changing facilities. Advantages of mobile access solution The HID Mobile Access Solution provides many advantages over the previous card-based system including after-hours access (vital to a 24/7 business like Avolon), ready access to secure rooms, and easy management of security clearances. With HID Mobile Access, fine-grained security access for a global network of offices is controlled centrally through a cloud-based portal. Access levels can be set on an individual basis so they are very flexible and can be modified as needed. “Using a mobile phone is much more convenient than access cards. People forget their access cards, but their mobile phone is with them all the time,” said Allan Dawson, facilities project manager at Avolon. “It’s much more efficient. For example, we now have much lower instances of people leaving the perimeter and having to ask for re-entry because they’ve left their pass in the office.” Worldwide installation of physical access solution In the future, Avolon anticipates expanding its new physical access solution across its global campuses. “As well as deploying in our Dublin head office we have also deployed in our New York, Florida, and Hong Kong offices,” said Dawson. “The benefit of using a global platform means our people can travel between offices with their security status intact and ready to go for each location.”
The Spitalfields Estate in East London uses Genetec Security Centre to modernise CCTV security and build a platform for future service innovation. Business challenge The Spitalfields Estate is a 1.9m ft2, mixed-use development in East London managed by CBRE. It includes corporate offices, retail and residential units, public spaces, and a market independent of its famous neighbour, the Old Spitalfields market. The estate has 16,000 tenants and runs several cultural and entertainment events to foster a local community environment. Recently visitor numbers have increased from 165,000 to between 400,000 and 500,000 a week. Effective security management and caring for tenants and visitors is a key part of the estate’s job. The existing CCTV system was an old analogue application on a PC connected to a network of outdated cameras. Although functional, the system was difficult and costly to maintain. Image quality and storage capabilities were poor. But it could not support some of the future services and applications that the estate wanted to deliver. The Spitalfields Estate is a showcase site and the CCTV system did not fit with its image of a modern, efficient location. Addressing CCTV system challenges The aim was a dedicated CCTV system capable of supporting modern equipment for deploying new services in future The estate planned to upgrade the cameras and cabling but soon realised the whole system needed replacing. The aim was a dedicated CCTV system capable of supporting modern equipment and a springboard for deploying new services and capabilities in the future. After a detailed tendering process, the estate decided to work with Genetec and its business partner, Custom Intelligent Security. According to Justin Morgan, from CIS Security and Head of Security at The Spitalfields Estate, “The presentation and sales process by Genetec and Custom was very impressive. There was no hard sell and it felt like a breath of fresh air. All the top CCTV suppliers offer high-quality solutions, but it was a feeling of reassurance that we got from the Genetec team." "The solution suited our needs because it offered the support, training, information, and knowledge sharing to make the system professional and easy to use.” Security Centre modernises security The estate deployed a new CCTV system based on the unified IP security platform, Genetec Security Centre. It is hosted on an all-in-one Genetec Streamvault 300 Series server. Analogue feeds from the existing camera network are converted into digital data and sent to Security Centre for staff to monitor and manipulate. Genetec Clearance is a digital evidence management solution. It improves GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) compliance by using intelligent identity-redaction features and removing the need to share image data via hard media. If there is a subject access request, staff use clearance to select relevant images, annotate, mask individuals not involved, and create a link to share the material. Data is deleted automatically after 31 days. The next phase of the solution will be a cable network survey and rolling out new cameras when old ones reach the end of life and cannot be repaired cost-effectively. Protecting existing investments and controlling future spend CCTV system delivers clear, clean images even from old cameras, and is easy to manage and use “To go from old, hard-to-use equipment to a professional, modern, and fit-for-purpose solution is a huge improvement for security management at The Spitalfields Estate. It’s an investment in technology and operations, but it’s also an investment in the team, the tenants, and the whole estate,” explained Morgan. The Spitalfields Estate now has a CCTV system that ensures the safety and security of visitors and staff professionally and efficiently. It delivers clear, clean images even from old cameras, and is easy to manage and use. Significantly, it enhances the estate’s brand reputation for providing modern, professional services backed up by an excellent delivery service from Custom. “The global security manager from one of our biggest business tenants came to see the new CCTV system and was very impressed. It proves that we are running a highly professional operation using the latest technology,” said Morgan. Morgan describes the change as going “from level 1 to level 10 without touching level 5”. Despite the major transformation, the solution has been designed and managed in phases so the estate can protect existing investment and control future spending. Scalable, modern, and efficient CCTV system One main objective was a system that could be developed to meet future needs and support more services and capabilities such as using analytics to improve security management. For example, Morgan and his team plan to use Security Centre to set up automatic detection alerts when someone enters a sensitive area, when large groups form, or suspect objects are left unattended. The estate and the new CCTV system are used as a training centre for CIS Security staff from other locations This will help to make security operations more efficient and means the staff won’t have to monitor every camera feed. The estate is also looking at how to integrate its existing, but standalone entrance access system with Security Center. “These are the kind of scalable and operational enhancements that the modern and efficient Genetec system is delivering to The Spitalfields Estate,” said Morgan. Security training The estate and the new CCTV system are used as a training centre for CIS Security staff from other locations. The site has several different security environments such as private buildings and public spaces to test skills. The Genetec system is also easy for students to set up and use. “To go from old, hard-to-use equipment to a professional, modern, and fit-for-purpose solution is a huge improvement for security management at The Spitalfields Estate. It’s an investment in technology and operations, but it’s also an investment in the team, the tenants, and the whole estate.”
The Palmetto Plaza Shopping Mall, an iconic shopping center located in Cali, Colombia, opened its doors in 2004 thanks to the support of a group of entrepreneurs from the region who dreamed of a place where local residents and tourists can find a wide range of commercial services and entertainment offerings. Need for a video surveillance solution To ensure a safe environment in the shopping center, mall officials sought a comprehensive video surveillance solution that can monitor the areas in and around the mall, including its square, corridors, parking lots, and the surrounding roads. Dahua Technology, in cooperation with its partner in Colombia - Fortox Security Group - a security consultant with a nationwide presence, jointly designed an AI-enabled Smart Retail Solution that replaced the shopping mall’s old CCTV analog system. Addressing the challenges The migration project from the analog CCTV to a networked system began with the design and implementation of structured cabling – using both fiber optics and copper – until the right and suitable CCTV solution is determined. The Palmetto Plaza Shopping Mall entrusted Fortox as its security consultant tasked to search for a technology that can facilitate the important steps toward the optimization and operation of the mall in the service of the city. Dahua’s AI-based portfolio Dahua offers AI applications within its portfolio, which allowed to transcend to a system dedicated to security & control " "When conducting the evaluation of the solutions offered in the market, we decided to work with Dahua because the company offers artificial intelligence applications within its portfolio, which allowed us to transcend from a system dedicated solely to security and control, to a system which will also contribute to other areas of the shopping center, integrating the Smart Retail solution into the circuit, and offering BI statistics to the mall for further analysis.” “In addition, we integrated the temperature monitoring solution and visualisation control into the system using a Dahua video wall,” explains Mr. Efren Mauricio Matabanchoy Romo, Project Engineer at Fortox Security Group. IP, dome, and PTZ cameras Dahua Technology provided 111 pcs of high-resolution IP cameras, panoramic cameras, dome cameras, and pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras with 30x optical zoom capability for the project. The Dahua cameras were installed in strategic locations to provide comprehensive security for employees and customers. The video feed, which is transmitted to the central monitoring stations inside the mall through a private network, can assist the security personnel in identifying emergencies, vandalism, and other situations where a quick response from the security team is necessary. Real-time monitoring solution The video surveillance system was designed to capture high-quality HD images, combined with advanced technologies to support embedded intelligence functions, such as sending an alert to the monitoring center when it detects abandoned or missing objects, unauthorised entry into a prohibited area, as well as facial recognition and other defined activities. The cameras support multi-streaming that allows images to be recorded and monitored with real-time high resolution The cameras also support multi-streaming that allows images to be recorded and monitored with real-time high resolution so that operators can have a clear and well-defined view of both live and recorded footage. IP video surveillance system Dahua Technology and its dedicated engineering team carried out the construction of this design by utilising its high-quality hardware and software products, with a great focus on solving the pain points of the shopping center and generating an added value to its visitors and internal customers. Mr. Chao Wu, General Manager of Dahua Technology Colombia, said, "As a result of excellent teamwork, we were able to implement more than an IP video surveillance system. We designed a solution with the latest technology and artificial intelligence unique in the city of Cali, which allows the Palmetto Plaza to provide greater security to its visitors and trade merchants.” 24/7 monitoring features In terms of security, through the Dahua equipment installed by Fortox, the Palmetto Plaza is now able to perform 24/7 monitoring and intelligent data analysis. "Likewise, through the Dahua Smart Retail Solution unique in the city of Cali, we generate added value to the merchants who have placed their trust in Palmetto Plaza. Smart Retail is not only a solution that guarantees maximum security for customers in the shopping centre.” “It is also a revolutionary new tool for Big Data statistics that is suitable for the mall´s management, allowing them to make efficient and correct decisions depending on the situation”, Mr. Wu added. Security management The Dahua Smart Retail Solution has significantly improved the security management of the Palmetto Plaza Shopping Mall. By increasing the resolution of the cameras, the visual records of the CCTV system are now optimised and strengthened. By increasing the resolution of the cameras, the visual records of the CCTV system are optimised & strengthened The updated network system provides video recordings with HD resolution, allowing operators to better control and manage the entire system. It also offers artificial intelligence analytics such as face recognition focused on security, business intelligence focused on real-time statistics of the number of shoppers in the mall, and monitoring of behavior within its facilities. CCTV network system In addition to its video surveillance products, Dahua Technology also contributed to the system migration project of the Palmetto Plaza, transforming its analog CCTV system to a CCTV network system with higher resolution cameras, 360-degree views, and artificial intelligence analytics. Dahua Technology also provided complete technical support and commercial services that include training operators and managing configuration settings. “We had devices that already completed their useful life. These devices did not meet our security needs due to their low resolution and constant failures,” says Mr. Juan Diego Guzman, Security Director of Palmetto Plaza Shopping Mall. Surveillance capability For Sandra M. Navas P, General Manager of the Palmetto Plaza Shopping Mall, this technology has generated more confidence among visitors and merchants. "The beginning of this system implementation has put us at the forefront of Colombian retail in terms of video surveillance capability, and has also allowed us to achieve a level of satisfaction in terms of security higher than 92%." Furthermore, this system has allowed Fortox as a security company to integrate into a single technology the requirements requested by the client, successfully delivering the required services needed in the shopping centre.
It can be a challenge to find an ideal electronic lock for every opening, and then to manage them all within a single, integrated solution. All too often, security procurement involves difficult compromises: A system that works perfectly for one door or department leaves another where the same solution doesn’t quite meet its needs. Range of access control solutions A newly built commercial premises in Banská Bystrica, Slovakia, power-tool manufacturer Makita stocks and distributes batteries, and runs wholesale supply logistics. They searched for a single, intuitive system to control every access point — now and in the future. Yet, as at many other sensitive commercial sites, not every door or opening is the same. Makita needed an access control solution with a comprehensive range of devices — to secure escape doors, entrances, interior doors, and more. “The diversity of access control devices available for the Incedo™ system was a decisive factor,” says Makita’s Richard Cimerman. Device management from a single system Makita Slovakia has a totally flexible, futureproof Incedo access solution designed to grow with their business ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions’ Incedo platform connects security software and hardware within a single, seamless ecosystem. The range of Incedo-enabled devices and award-winning door hardware convinced Makita — for this site and for future premises and refurbishments around Slovakia. The new Banská Bystrica facility has an Incedo system controlling access through main entrances, fire doors, and emergency exit doors, as well as interior doors fitted with Aperio® wireless electronic escutcheons. User-friendly Incedo Business software manages and monitors everything together from a single control panel. It filters and restricts employee and visitor access to specific areas of the plant. Secure key credentials The modular, platform-based Incedo solution incorporates wired and wireless door locking devices from across the ASSA ABLOY range; card, token and secure mobile key credentials that can be used interchangeably; and a growing range of third-party security solutions. Should Makita upgrade to Incedo Plus management in the future, their own system could manage CCTV and alarms alongside access and door entry. When security demands change at Makita Banská Bystrica, their Incedo system can adapt. With Incedo software, Makita can switch between local and Cloud managed solutions whenever they choose. System size is scalable up or down, anytime and on-demand, as security needs or space usage change. Makita Slovakia has a totally flexible, futureproof Incedo access solution designed to grow with their business.
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 must not be damaged. Wire-free electronic locks were the obvious answer. A wireless solution SMARTair® wireless locking devices now control access through 300 doors around the school. Electronic escutcheons, knob cylinders, and wall readers (including lifts) are connected to intuitive SMARTair software by a network of 38 HUBs. The school chose SMARTair Wireless Online management for their new keyless access system. This powerful management option enables real-time control of access to and around the site, even if the school’s data network is down. Automated emails inform security staff of any incidents, keeping students, teachers, equipment, and precious heritage safe. Real-time key management “The main benefit is the ease of real-time key management — from any place and at any time — via the wireless online management system,” says the school’s IT Manager, Francisco Fernández Soriano. “This increases security for children and for staff because no unauthorised people can enter the school.” In addition to the main entrances and classrooms, access to private spaces is constantly monitored “In addition to the main entrances and classrooms, access to private spaces such as lifts, offices, staff rooms, the church, the museum, the library, and the IT room is constantly monitored.” Scalable modular system Installation of the school’s SMARTair system required minimal work. Some doors date to the 16th century, so major alterations were not possible. “The system was installed without a hitch and also without any disruption to classes,” he adds. Because SMARTair is a modular system, scalability is built in. They can extend or fine-tune their access system when they choose. Indeed, the school’s “SMARTair Phase II” is already under discussion.
Marriott International Inc. is a hospitality company and the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Centre is a Marriott property in the world. Located in Nashville, Tennessee, Gaylord Opryland offers visitors the chance to experience Music City under a single roof. The resort has a hotel with over 3000 suites and rooms and a smaller adjacent hotel with more than 300. Risk assessment Ryman Hospitality, the organisation that owns Gaylord Brand Hotels, decided to embark on a risk assessment of their properties in 2017. The third-party assessors discovered that CCTV systems were lacking in all of the hotels, including at the Gaylord Opryland Resort. According to Greg Pezzo, Gaylord Opryland Resort and Attractions’ Safety and Security Director, “The system consisted of old operating systems and cameras that didn’t all work. The security team could not get consistent playback from all of their cameras, and they were not able to store data for more than a few weeks at a time.” As a result of the risk assessment, ownership decided to invest in a complete upgrade of all its hotels and chose the Gaylord Opryland as its test case. Their strategy was to use Opryland as the model and then upgrade their other five Gaylord hotels following its success. Installation of multidirectional cameras Working with integrator Herring Technology, Ryman Hospitality designed a solution that features a new video management system (VMS) from Milestone Systems and 400 state-of-the-art cameras from Hanwha Techwin. The Resort purchased a variety of Hanwha cameras, including 145 XND-6010 full HD cameras with video analytics, 182 Q series indoor and outdoor dome cameras with IR, and more than 20 PNM 7000 and 9000 multi-directional cameras. Deciding where to place their cameras was a relatively simple process. Pezzo explains, “We added cameras where we had high volume, where we had experienced problems in the past, and where we didn’t previously have cameras at all.” They also looked at their own data relating to theft and other incidents to help determine camera location. High-quality imaging camera The surveillance system and the cameras are helping to protect the resort against liability from potential lawsuits According to Pezzo, one of the main functions of their upgraded system is protecting the resort against false claims. He states, “From a claims perspective, this surveillance system and, specifically, these cameras are helping to protect us against liability from potential lawsuits.” He explains, “Our older security camera images are grainy or black and white, which means we could not get the level of detail we needed. But, with Hanwha cameras, we are able to capture high-quality images in real-time that show us, for example, how a guest fell: whether there was an obstruction, water on the floor, an indentation, or whether the guest simply tripped.” The ability to protect the organisation against potential lawsuits equates to significant ROI for the Resort. Easy to keep track of movement As a result of the upgrade, security is easily able to track persons of interest clearly as they move throughout the resort. Says Pezzo, “With 3000 rooms and a million square feet of property, the ability to see an individual this clearly as they move through our spaces is incredible. In the past, we would lose people in uncovered sections. They would just disappear. But that doesn’t happen anymore.” For the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center, the upgrade had an immediate impact. According to Pezzo, “On the first day after installing the new cameras, someone attempted a false claim, but we were easily able to prove that it was not our fault.” For 2021, the Resort plans to invest in more new cameras every few months as the budget becomes available.
Round table discussion
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.
Facial recognition is a mature technology that continues to change and evolve. New innovations such as artificial intelligence (AI) are expanding facial recognition capabilities, even as privacy concerns, though often misguided, undermine wider acceptance in the market. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the new developments in facial recognition?
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