One of the lightest, brightest and most cheerful shopping centres in the county, High Chelmer Shopping Centre welcomes over 10 million shoppers per annum to its 80 shops and stores counted electronically by infra-red beams strategically located at each of the three mall entrances, and provides a convenient, modern under-cover shopping experience close to the town's car parks.

As part of a refurbishment programme, the centre owners decided to upgrade the on-site security equipment in the service and office areas and undertook an evaluation and tender process to identify the best technology and a preferred supplier to carry out the installation.

The existing security system on the doors in these areas had been in place for some time and was in need of modernisation. They principally consisted of keyed mechanical mortise locks that were now suffering from age related wear and tear. Although there had been no specific key control issues necessitating the unwanted inconvenience and cost replacing locks and cutting new keys, the centre management knew there was a high probability this could happen. This, together with the changing security situation, need for greater vigilance and the call for more control over staff and visitor access rights, meant an upgrade was urgently required.

To replace the locks a modern integrated access control solution was needed enabling the centre management team to centrally manage access rights in all the pre-arranged areas, creating a more efficient and secure system for access to all authorised doors.

The solution

Electronic security service and installation specialists Leigh Visual, with offices in London and Bristol, were identified as the preferred provider and they met with centre management and the owners LaSalle Investment Management to discuss how current security arrangements worked, what was required of the new system, installation timelines and budgets.

Following an in-depth evaluation of the centre and access traffic within the designated areas to be controlled, Leigh Visual recommended equipment from SALTO Systems as its state-of-the-art electronic locks and complimentary SVN (SALTO Virtual Network) technology offered the best solution to the shopping centre's requirements. The system fitted consists of Mifare controlled XS4 escutcheons for access control, with WRM 9000 IP 46 compliant 13.56Mhz RFID Contactless Smart Card wall readers and CU50EN on-line controllers.

Sales Director at Leigh Visual, Ken Bickers, comments: “Doors in a shopping centre are typically spread over too great an area to justify a fully hard wired access control system so a versatile standalone system with a mix of mostly off-line doors, together with a few key on-line doors, is usually the preferred option. This is because not only are there huge cost savings but given budgets in the present difficult retailing environment, they can also be gradually added to the system as time and funding allows.”

SALTO Area Sales Manager, Rex Palmer, says: “Having had a mechanical key based system in place for so long, we wanted to ensure that we future proofed High Chelmer’s access upgrade. The best way to achieve this was to introduce a networked multifunction card system that would enable them to enjoy the benefits of electronic access control now but have the in-built versatility to simultaneously operate as their ID badge, time and attendance and cashless vending card if required in the future.

"The XS4 system was the perfect solution as it is smart, secure and innovative. It supports up to 64,000 users and is designed for use in wire free stand-alone situations in a wide range of environments"

As Ken says, the XS4 system was the perfect solution as it is smart, secure and innovative. It supports up to 64,000 users and is designed for use in wire free stand-alone situations in a wide range of environments. The system can be easily retro-fitted to almost any existing door, with versions available for use with European, Scandinavian or American ANSI modular mortise locks, enabling them to be turned into fully featured access control doors without compromising comfort, convenience, security or control.

It also allows High Chelmer to benefit from the many advantages of the SALTO Virtual Network (SVN), enabling access profiles to be changed rapidly and locks and key cards to be updated, restricted or deleted remotely, adding real value to the access management of the shopping centre.”

The benefits

Whilst the primary purpose of the refurbishment programme was to upgrade the facilities of the shopping centre used by the public, back of house and operational areas have been given equal consideration. For its security needs, High Chelmer’s requirement was to have a reliable, state-of-the-art electronic access control system that would eliminate any instances of unauthorised door access. Installing hardware and software from SALTO Systems has achieved this.

Mick McDonagh, Centre Manager for High Chelmer Shopping Centre, says: “Our mission is to maintain our position as the retail heart of the town centre. To achieve this we continually need to adapt to changing regional, national and indeed global retail trends. As part of this change we now have a cost-effective and user-friendly security solution that gives me more control over the movement of my staff. It is flexible and expandable to meet our future needs, and the fact that it was easy to install and no hard wiring was required was also a real boon.”

Download PDF version Download PDF version

In case you missed it

How soon will access control cards become extinct and why?
How soon will access control cards become extinct and why?

Since the advent of the physical security industry, access control has been synonymous with physical cards, whether 125 kHz ‘prox’ cards or the newer smart card alternatives. However, other credentials have also come on the scene, including biometrics and even smart phones. Some of these choices have distinct cost and security advantages over physical cards. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How soon will the access control card become extinct and why? 

Addressing the Internet Of Things (IoT) and challenges in device design using a comprehensive approach
Addressing the Internet Of Things (IoT) and challenges in device design using a comprehensive approach

As the number of connected devices increases worldwide, the ways that they are being used, designed, and tested have also expanded. The rise of connected devices is demanding engineers to harness the power of the internet of things, which is expected to hit 28 billion by 2025. A comprehensive approach to device design is needed more than ever to address the challenges that this rapid growth will bring. Why engineers should be using IoT technology in product design The demand for devices designed to use the Internet of Things (IoT) technology is increasing as more industries are finding expanded ways to put them into use. Industries such as healthcare, automobiles, and agriculture are becoming more dependent on cloud capabilities and are therefore in need of new devices able to connect to it. Due to this rise in demand, an increasing amount of devices are delivering a multitude of benefits both to consumers and companies. However, this new wave of products has led to a growing list of challenges for engineers as they are forced to address IoT tech in regards to connectivity, regulations, longevity, and security. Ways to use IoT in the development process Engineers are facing these new challenges along with the normal pressure of deadlines and test considerations. By approaching all of these issues from a comprehensive point-of-view, the solutions become clearer and new device capabilities can be born. Let’s look at the challenges individually as well as possible solutions for them. Improving connectivity IoT enables data to be transferred between infrastructure, the cloud, and devices, making the process smooth  Because IoT is based around connection, it’s no surprise that the primary challenge for engineers to overcome is the improvement of connectivity between devices. IoT enables data to be transferred between infrastructure, the cloud, and devices, so making this process as smooth as possible is crucial. The main challenges involved with connectivity have to do with development and product testing while meeting industry standards and best practices. Additionally, many companies lack the necessary equipment and technology to develop new IoT devices, which makes it difficult to create scalable prototypes and test new products. Suggested solutions To address the issue of not having the expertise and necessary tools for testing, we suggest outsourcing the prototyping and evaluation process instead of attempting to tackle this in-house. By doing this, you’re able to free up resources that would otherwise be needed for expensive equipment and qualified staff. Helping comply with regulations When working with devices that are connected across the world, there is a complex web of regulations and conformance standards that can lead to challenges for engineers. The necessity of complying with these regulations while also pushing to meet deadlines can be burdensome and lead to an increase in production time and expenses. Failure to comply with global and regional laws, as well as system and carrier requirements, can lead to fines and costly setbacks. This type of failure can destroy a company’s reputation on top of causing financial losses, often leading to the loss of business. Suggested solutions By testing the IoT device design and components early, engineers can address any pre-compliance issues that may arise. During the early stages of development, we suggest using scalable and automated test systems readily available in the marketplace. Improved communication with other devices New challenges arise as new devices hit the market and existing technologies are redesigned to offer a better experience In the rapidly growing number of connected devices, new challenges will arise as new devices hit the market and existing technologies are redesigned to offer a better user experience. This rapid growth in devices will lead to congested networks leading to the necessity of devices being able to function in the midst of increased traffic and interference. Failure to do this will lead to delayed responses which could prove to be fatal. Suggested solutions The best solution for this issue is found in the evaluation process and supporting test methods that the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) published in the American National Standard for Evaluation of Wireless Coexistence (ANSI). This process addresses the interconnectivity issues present in radio frequency environments. The outlined process involves defining the environment and evaluating the wireless performance of the equipment through thorough testing. An in-depth version can be found in its entirety online. Increasing the longevity of devices IoT devices are being used in vital industries such as healthcare and automotive so battery life and power consumption are two challenges that engineers must take seriously. A failure in this area could potentially lead to loss of life or safety concerns on the road. As new firmware and software are being designed to address these factors, engineers must be implementing them into IoT devices with the ability to be continually updated. Suggested solutions Longevity should be addressed in all aspects of the design process and tested thoroughly using a wide range of currents. By doing this, an engineer can simulate consumer applications to best predict performance. Security Security and privacy are concerns with any technology, but with the use of IoT in medical devices, it’s paramount Security has been a controversial issue for IoT since its inception. Security and privacy are concerns with any technology, but with the widespread use of IoT in medical devices, smart home appliances, and access control and surveillance, it’s paramount. For example, medical devices may store information about health parameters, medications, and prescriber information. In some cases, these devices may be controlled by an app, such as a smart pacemaker, to prevent heart arrhythmias. Naturally, a security issue in these devices could be devastating. Another example of dangerous security concern is with surveillance cameras and access control, such as for home or business security systems. These intelligent door locking systems contain locks, lock access controllers, and associated devices that communicate with each other. Suspicious activities are flagged with alerts and notifications, but if a hacker gains access, it can lead to real-world, physical danger. Security design points Here are some key points for security design: Physical security: IoT devices may be in external, isolated locations that are vulnerable to attack from not only hackers but by human contact. Embedding security protection on every IoT device is expensive, but it’s important for general security and data safety. Security of data exchange: Data protection is also important because data gets transmitted from IoT devices to the gateway, then onto the cloud. With surveillance and access control information or sensitive medical information, and encryption is vital to protecting data from a breach. Cloud storage security: Similar to data exchange, the information stored in medical devices, surveillance and access control systems, and some smart appliances with payment features, must be protected. This includes encryption and device authentication through access control, which can police what resources can be accessed and used. Update: Security vulnerabilities will always occur, so the key to addressing them is having a plan to address errors and release patches. Customers should also have options to secure devices quickly and effectively. Suggested solutions Engineers can include security and protection into IoT devices with early and perpetual testing throughout the design process. Most security breaches occur at endpoints or during updates, giving engineers a starting point for how to address them. Creating more secure devices Ensuring the security of connected devices should be of supreme importance for engineers as these devices are vulnerable to security breaches. The ultimate security of devices goes beyond the scope of engineering as the network and enterprise levels must also be secure to protect against potential threats. However, engineers play a role in this protection as well and should consider device security in the design process. Suggested solutions On a device level, engineers can help protect IoT devices from vulnerabilities by implementing early testing and continuing it throughout the design process. Most security transgressions occur at endpoints so this continual testing can, and should, create barriers to breaches. Regulations and compliance For IoT engineers, the complex web of regulations and compliance standards present new challenges Regulations and compliance surrounding data and technology are nothing new, but for IoT engineers, the complex web of regulations and compliance standards present new challenges. Engineers are already addressing obstacles in security and connectivity, all while meeting deadlines, and working around regulations adds time and expense to the process. Unfortunately, a failure to comply with global, regional, or local laws can lead to setbacks and fines. In addition to time lost in production and possible fines, the damage to a company’s reputation can lead to even more losses. Suggested solutions Compliance should be considered early and often in the design process. In the early stages of development, the IoT device or components can be tested to address and compliance issues. If possible, use a scalable and automated test system. The comprehensive solution As we stare at an uncertain future full of possibilities, it’s clear to see that new challenges will continue to be presented as technology evolves and new innovative devices are designed by engineers. By addressing these issues early and often, solutions can be implemented and problems prevented before they even have a chance to occur thanks to sound engineering and solid design.

Everbridge provides the critical event management platform to help organisations manage the full lifecycle of a crisis
Everbridge provides the critical event management platform to help organisations manage the full lifecycle of a crisis

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 ‘any place to which the public or any section of the public has access, on payment or otherwise, as of right or by virtue of express or implied permission.’ Publicly accessible locations Publicly accessible locations include a wide variety of everyday locations such as: Sports stadiums, festivals and music venues, hotels, public houses, clubs, bars, casinos, high streets, retail stores, shopping centres, markets, schools, universities, medical centres, hospitals, places of worship, government offices, job centres, transport hubs, parks, beaches, public squares, other open spaces. This list is by no means exhaustive, but it does demonstrate the diverse nature of publicly accessible locations. To manage these challenges, some organisations are relying on guarding and manual solutions or processes Organisations responsible for publicly accessible locations have many challenges they need to overcome while at the same time ensuring that safety and security is visible, yet non-intrusive. To manage these challenges, some organisations are relying on guarding and manual solutions or processes, whereas other organisations have invested heavily in diverse security technologies: CCTV, access control, intruder alarms, fire detection, intercoms and more. Managing public safety Effectively managing public safety and security is difficult and can be costly. Potential liabilities are something to seriously consider, based on forthcoming regulation and prevailing public expectations. When a critical event unfolds public reactions can be difficult to safely manage, however this is now a must do. Public space operators need to get the right information to the right people at the right time to protect all people, including every single member of the public. Their work with public and private sector clients around the world has enabled them to understand ‘protecting the public’ challenges and offer solutions that meet the specific requirements. Public space operators and organisations must keep track of all emerging threats and assess the potential impacts of when, not if, they will experience a critical event. Unpredictable threat environment Security executives have the challenge of protecting people, facilities and assets With an increasingly complex and unpredictable threat environment, it has never been more imperative to act faster. With more complete intelligence, organisations can increase their speed and decisiveness to assess risks and prevent those risks from harming people or disrupting operations. Leisure and entertainment is a prominent UK industry, that is also one of the most vulnerable to safety and security threats. Security executives have the challenge of protecting people, facilities and assets, while also maintaining friendly and welcoming services to visitors. Public venues and retailers must provide non-intrusive client safety and security. For the would-be criminal, safety and security provision should be a visible deterrent. Balancing these needs is where Everbridge can help organisations. Everbridge provides the critical event management platform to help organisations manage the full lifecycle of a crisis. Facilitating device activation Their platform correlates events from disparate safety and security systems into a common operating picture to focus people’s attention on what really matters. The platform provides users with actionable alerts, next step actions, and automated reporting to better manage risks, ensure compliance with operating procedures and support the business continuity. Automated workflows ensure rapid, consistent responses, reducing the risk of human error Automated workflows ensure rapid, consistent responses, reducing the risk of human error. It also facilitates device activation to ensure they are always in operational control and protecting the people. Dynamic reports and dashboards provide real-time actionable insights for the operations teams and senior executives. Benefits include: Real-time situational awareness. Reduces risk. Accelerates response times. Avoids technology lock-ins. Prevents information overload. Keeps stakeholders informed. With Everbridge, the organisation can deliver the public protect duty. Now and in the future.