Download PDF version Contact company

Normally when we talk about trends and the future, we are actually thinking more about the present. The reason we are keen on understanding trends is because we want to know how they will affect our current business and how we should act now to avoid being outdated.”

Significant changes have shaped the security industry during the last decade, and more exciting innovations should be expected in the 2020s. Emerging technologies and applications, such as multi-dimensional perception, UHD, low light imaging, artificial intelligence, and cloud technology, open new possibilities for the security industry. At the same time, millions of cameras and other security devices are being connected into networks, making the security industry a very important part of the future IoT world.

Hikvision shares their thoughts on a few key trends that will affect the security industry in 2020, and probably even longer into the future.

Multi-dimensional perception

Video cameras integrated with centimetre and millimetre wave radars are becoming popular in object detection

For security cameras, image capturing simulates the sense of sight, extending the power of people’s “eyes.” But what if security cameras could use other kinds of “senses,” like “hearing,” “smelling,” or even detections that are beyond visual range, to identify and respond to incidents? For example, video cameras integrated with centimetre and millimetre wave radars are becoming popular in object detection. With deep integration of radar and video, a multi-dimensional camera extends perception beyond visual range to improve the detection of objects and movement tracking, up to a distance of 100 meters and in any weather.

Another approach is the integrated automobile horn-detection camera. Equipped with sonar arrays, this camera can precisely detect and locate the source of a vehicle’s horn, while identifying the vehicle and generating photos and videos of the event as evidence. This ability can help reduce noise pollution on roadways and in communities with rules against the unnecessary use of horns.

More “senses,” like smoke detection, heat detection, or even pressure detection, can be embedded in cameras to precisely monitor and report events or incidents. The multi-dimensional perception trend will powerfully shape security systems and endow them with more capabilities to create safety in the near future.

Multi-intelligence cameras

The computing power of security cameras has been enhanced greatly with the increased performance of AI chips

Artificial intelligence applications have been slowly emerging in the security industry for many years already, but most AI-powered security cameras can only run a single algorithm because of the limitation of computing power, which means they can incorporate only one intelligent function at a time, counting people or counting cars, for example.

Now, the computing power of security cameras has been enhanced greatly with the increased performance of AI chips. Multi-intelligence technology will be the trend for the next generation of AI-empowered cameras as several intelligent tasks will be accomplished by one camera. Vehicle intersections can be used as an example. In many cities one can see ten or more cameras installed at intersections to detect traffic flow, to identify violations, to detect vehicle types and license plate numbers, protect sidewalks, and so on.

But now, with multi-intelligence cameras, two or three cameras will be enough for an intersection. Since fewer cameras will be equipped for one application scenario, the cost of equipment, installation and maintenance and management will all be reduced. Moreover, scenario-defined cameras will become common as manufacturers can insert different algorithms into security cameras according to specific application scenarios, allowing customers to choose customised functions for their needs.

Proactive and comprehensive security systems

Proactive video analysis enables deployment of valuable comprehensive security systems

Merely reactive CCTV systems will no longer meet the demands of security operations teams as they are often looking for new opportunities to enhance their operational efficiency. Many customers are now asking for proactive and comprehensive security systems that combine CCTV monitoring, alarm systems, access control, and even fire protection.

With the development of AI technology, monitoring processes of CCTV systems are becoming more automated by analysing live and recorded video to detect, classify and track predefined objects. These processes can be especially effective in proactively identifying events as they happen and extracting information instantly from recorded video.

Meanwhile, proactive and intelligent video analysis enables deployment of valuable comprehensive security systems and improves the return on investment for integration of CCTV and non-CCTV systems. For example, now, when a camera detects an incident, a linkage will trigger the alarm system automatically, telling security personnel to check the surveillance camera live feed. Conversely, when alarm, access control or fire protection systems report an incident, the CCTV system will be activated to verify what actually happened. Digital transformation to increase productivity is a business imperative for most organizations nowadays, and proactive and comprehensive security systems will be the direction for security operations to increase their efficiency and value.

Ultra-high definition

UHD is benefiting from improvements in transmission and encoding technologies

People want to see more and see with more clarity; thus pursuing ever higher image resolution has been a key driving force in the development of security industry technology. After the HD era, the Ultra High Definition (UHD) era will be the natural next step. UHD used to mean “expensive cost”, but now UHD is benefiting from improvements in transmission and encoding technologies. It is becoming more and more cost-effective for large-scale use in the security industry, from entry levels to the top.

With greater bandwidth and lower latency transmission technology, the smooth transmission of UHD images is becoming possible, and widespread adoption of 4K and 8K resolution cameras will meet real opportunities.

Furthermore, continuously optimised encoding technology, which is vastly decreasing the bitrate of video, is another stimulus for UHD applications in the security industry. As the bitrate of recorded footage is greatly reduced, bandwidth and storage costs are reduced as well.

Visibility, any time and any condition

Low light imaging technologies have become more and more popular in the security industry

Most security incidents happen at night, but images and footage from conventional security cameras may easily lose colours and critical details in ultra-low light environments. Low light imaging technologies have become more and more popular in the security industry, enhancing the visibility of objects for identifying details at any time and in any condition.

Another important innovation is thermal imaging, which can detect the heat information of any object with a temperature above absolute zero. Taking advantage of heat zone imaging, thermal imaging technology allows cameras to “see” in low-visibility conditions, such as fog, smog, rain, and snow, even at night. And thermal cameras have huge potentials in various applications, like perimeter defence, fire detection and temperature measurement.

Moving to the cloud

As mentioned at the beginning, more security devices, including cameras, are being connected over the Internet, making them parts of the IoT world. Thus, “moving to the cloud” has been a focus for the security industry, especially for video surveillance operations. Why are people enthusiastic about the cloud? It’s because cloud services can bring vast benefits in efficiency, flexibility, cost-effectiveness, and security.

Among security operations, video surveillance as a Service (VSaaS) has been a major trend in the security industry as it is an ideal choice for small and medium-sized businesses to move their video-based security systems to the cloud. It is a technology to host the hardware and software of security operations in the cloud, so that users can access their IP cameras and IoT devices and check video footage or alarm linkage from anywhere. Since no on-site server installation and system configuration is needed, it is often more convenient than traditional video surveillance solutions. On the cloud, users can distribute costs over a contract term and pay for exactly and only the services that are used.

With VSaaS, system integrators are able to provide services for their clients using the cloud

For enterprises running chain stores, demands on VSaaS are increasing greatly. Moving video surveillance services to the cloud, these businesses can quickly and economically centralize their security operations and remotely check the status of their stores. To greet the “moving to the cloud” trend, security system integrators are also taking hold of VSaaS as it is a good chance to strengthen their business models. With VSaaS, system integrators are able to provide services for their clients using the cloud, such as system checks and remote maintenance, and consistently scale their business with efficiency.

Higher demands on cybersecurity

With millions of security devices being connected in IoT, security systems are evolving from single and isolated to open and connected. People are getting more and more concerned about the security of their data and privacy, and accordingly have set higher demands for the security industry on cybersecurity.

To help minimise the risk of security breaches, a multi-layered approach, including network, application, and device layering, that addresses a full range of cybersecurity threats concurrently will be demanded and expected by security organisations and IT departments. Security manufacturers, will also have to cover the security of their products throughout the whole lifecycle.

5G, big data affect the industry

Just as 2020 is the beginning of a new decade, we expect to see a new decade of innovation in technologies and applications. Along with the prominent security industry trends mentioned above, other trends such as 5G, big data, smart enterprise operations, and stricter data protection regulations like EU’s GDPR, might also greatly affect the industry in the 2020s.

Share with LinkedIn Share with Twitter Share with Facebook Share with Facebook
Download PDF version Download PDF version

In case you missed it

Wire-free, mobile first and data rich? The future of access control is within almost anyone’s reach
Wire-free, mobile first and data rich? The future of access control is within almost anyone’s reach

The 2020s will be a wireless decade in access control, says Russell Wagstaff from ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions EMEA. He examines the trends data, and looks beyond mobile keys to brand new security roles for the smartphone. The benefits of wire-free electronic access control are well rehearsed. They are also more relevant than ever. A wireless solution gives facility managers deeper, more flexible control over who should have access, where and when, because installing, operating and integrating them is easier and less expensive than wiring more doors. Battery powered locks Many procurement teams are now aware of these cost advantages, but perhaps not their scale. Research for an ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions (AAOS) benchmarking exercise found installation stage to be the largest contributor to cost reduction. Comparing a typical installation of battery-powered Aperio locks versus wired locks at the same scale, the research projected an 80% saving in installers’ labour costs for customers who go cable-free. Battery powered locks all consume much less energy than traditional wired locks Operating costs are also lower for wireless: Battery powered locks all consume much less energy than traditional wired locks, which normally work via magnets connected permanently to electricity. Wireless locks only ‘wake up’ when presented with a credential for which they must make an access decision. AAOS estimated a 70% saving in energy use over a comparable lock’s lifetime. Find out more about wireless access control at ASSA ABLOY's upcoming 29th June webinar Deploying wireless locks In short, every time a business chooses a wireless lock rather than a wired door, they benefit from both installation and operating cost savings. A recent report from IFSEC Global, AAOS and Omdia reveals the extent to which the advantages of wireless are cutting through. Responses to a large survey of security professionals — end-users, installers, integrators and consultants serving large corporations and small- to medium-sized organisations in education, healthcare, industrial, commercial, infrastructure, retail, banking and other sectors — suggest almost four locations in ten (38%) have now deployed wireless locks as a part or the whole of their access solution. The corresponding data point from AAOS’s 2014 Report was 23%. Electronic access control Electronic access control is less dependent than ever on cabling Without doubt, electronic access control is less dependent than ever on cabling: Even after a year when many investments have been deferred or curtailed, the data reveals fast-growing adoption of wireless locks, technologies and systems. Is mobile access control — based on digital credentials or ‘virtual keys’ stored on a smartphone — an ideal security technology for this wire-free future? In fact, the same report finds mobile access is growing fast right now. Among those surveyed, 26% of end-users already offer mobile compatibility; 39% plan to roll out mobile access within two years. Before the mid-2020s, around two-thirds of access systems will employ the smartphone in some way. The smartphone is also convenient for gathering system insights Driving rapid adoption What is driving such rapid adoption? The convenience benefits for everyday users are obvious — witness the mobile boom in banking and payments, travel or event ticketing, transport, food delivery and countless more areas of modern life. Access control is a natural fit. If you have your phone, you are already carrying your keys: What could be easier? IBM forecasts that 1.87 billion people globally will be mobile workers by 2022 Less often discussed are the ways mobile management makes life easier for facility and security managers, too. Among those polled for the new Wireless Access Control Report, almost half (47%) agreed that ‘Mobile was more flexible than physical credentials, and 36% believe that mobile credentials make it easier to upgrade employee access rights at any time.’ IBM forecasts that 1.87 billion people globally will be mobile workers by 2022. Workers in every impacted sector require solutions which can get the job done from anywhere: Access management via smartphone offers this. Site management device The smartphone is also convenient for gathering system insights. For example, one new reporting and analytics tool for CLIQ key-based access control systems uses an app to collect, visualise and evaluate access data. Security system data could contribute to business success. The app’s clear, visual layout helps managers to instantly spot relevant trends, anomalies or patterns. It’s simple to export, to share insights across the business. Reinvented for learning — not just as a ‘key’ or site management device — the phone will help businesses make smarter, data-informed decisions. The smartphone will also play a major role in security — and everything else — for an exciting new generation of smart buildings. These buildings will derive their intelligence from interoperability. Over 90% of the report’s survey respondents highlighted the importance of integration across building functions including access control, CCTV, alarm and visitor management systems. Genuinely seamless integration They offer greater peace of mind than proprietary solutions which ‘lock you in’ for the long term Yet in practice, stumbling blocks remain on the road to deeper, genuinely seamless integration. More than a quarter of those polled felt held back by a lack of solutions developed to open standards. ‘Open standards are key for the momentum behind the shift towards system integration,’ notes the Report. As well as being more flexible, open solutions are better futureproofed. Shared standards ensure investments can be made today with confidence that hardware and firmware may be built on seamlessly in the future. They offer greater peace of mind than proprietary solutions which ‘lock you in’ for the long term. Open solutions and mobile management are critical to achieving the goals which end-users in every vertical are chasing: scalability, flexibility, sustainability, cost-efficiency and convenience.

What are the latest trends in perimeter security technology?
What are the latest trends in perimeter security technology?

Perimeter security is the first line of defence against intruders entering a business or premises. Traditionally associated with low-tech options such as fencing, the field of perimeter security has expanded in recent years and now encompasses a range of high-tech options. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the latest trends in perimeter security technology?

Secure access control is helping to shape the post-pandemic world
Secure access control is helping to shape the post-pandemic world

With the continued rolling back of COVID restrictions in the UK, there is a palpable sense of relief. A mixture of mass vaccinations, widespread testing, and track and tracing of the infection is helping to enable a healthy bounce back for businesses – with secure access control taking an important role in facilitating this. However, rather than just being a reaction to the wake of the pandemic, there is every sign that the economy, and consequently the security sector as well, are both rebuilding and reshaping for the long-term new normal. Prioritising Safety Already deemed an essential service even during the first wave of the pandemic, the security industry has of course taken a vital role in protecting people and property throughout the crisis. Now that venues in the UK are starting to reopen again, our services are key to occupancy management and ensuring that disease transmission is limited as far as possible. Access control is also key in reassuring people that their safety is a priority. Making the upgrade It’s all been about choosing the most suitable components and technology that already existed with a few “tweaks”  Businesses and organisations have a duty of care to their employees and the safety of visitors – so controlling access, employing lateral flow testing, and deploying suitable Track & Trace mechanisms are all key components. I think those outside our industry are surprised to learn that most of the technology being deployed and used hasn’t just magically developed since COVID appeared – it’s all been about choosing the most suitable components and technology that already existed albeit with a few development “tweaks” or adjustments for the situation at hand. This includes using or installing facial recognition readers rather than using fingerprint or contact tokens, it is swapping to automatic request to exit sensors instead of buttons; it is using powered secure doors rather than having people all grab the same handle. Using mobile credentials is also a key technology choice – why not use the highly secure, easy to manage, cost-effective, and of course contact-free benefits of this approach? Touchless solutions We have seen a clear shift in organisations looking to protect their staff and visitors. For instance, we have a big utility customer in Southeast Asia that has just replaced close to 200 sites using fingerprint readers with an additional facial recognition capability. We have also seen a big rise in demand for touchless request to exit sensors and Bluetooth Low Energy Readers for use with smartphone authentication. Working together Integration of security systems is of course nothing new, but in the post-pandemic or endemic age, it has perhaps never been more important. Installations need to be simple, straightforward, and rapid to help maintain safe distancing but also to ensure systems can be deployed as soon as they are needed. The world is changing and developing rapidly and there is simply no place for systems that don’t work with others or cause the end-user considerable cost and inconvenience to upgrade. This flexible delivery of security solutions perfectly matches the evolving and increasing demands of the market. It’s clear that end-users want systems that work well and can easily integrate with their existing systems – not only security but all the other business components which work in unison with each other over a shared network. Great opportunities ahead The recent work-from-home trend is also clearly changing the way organisations and businesses interact with the built environment. Lots of companies are downsizing, offices are being split up, there is lots of revitalisation and reuse of existing office space – all of which creates considerable opportunities for security providers. UK inflation more than doubled in April 2021 with unemployment figures dropping and the Pound rising in value There are also, in the UK at least, clear signs that the construction industry is rapidly growing again -with a forecast of 8% rebound and growth this year. UK inflation more than doubled in April 2021 with unemployment figures dropping and the Pound rising in value – all positive signs for UK-based security providers. Undoubtedly the highly successful UK vaccination rollout has helped considerably, but there are signs that the Eurozone looks set to improve considerably over the next few months as well. Using integrated access control Undoubtedly the pandemic has made security markets around the world more aware of the benefits of integrated access control in managing the needs of the new normal COVID endemic environment. For example, as a business, we have always had keen interest from the UK healthcare sector, but over the last 12 months, we have seen a big growth in previously modest international markets including Morocco, Kuwait, Bahrain, Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Thailand – all of which are very keen to adopt improved access control solutions. Learning the lessons Nobody would deny the last year or so has been unprecedentedly tough on everyone, as a society we have had to make huge changes and sacrifices. Governments, organisations, and businesses all need to be better prepared in the future, to understand the things that went wrong and those that were successful. However, there is a world beyond the immediate pandemic and its effects. Flexible working practices and the changes these will have to the way we live and work will undoubtedly present great opportunities for the security sector in helping the world evolve. The pandemic has been a wake-up call for many organisations with regards to their duty of care to employees – particularly when it comes to mental health and providing a sensible work/life balance. Where we work and the safety of these facilities has received far more scrutiny than before. Flexible security systems Integrated security solutions have a vital role to play in not only protecting the safety of people during the post-lockdown return to work but also in the evolution of the built environment and move towards smart cities - which inevitably will now need to consider greater flexibility in securing home working spaces rather than just traditional places of work. Importantly, powerful access control and integrated security systems need to be flexible to the uncertainties ahead. The COVID pandemic has shown that nothing can be considered certain, except the need for greater flexibility and resilience in the way we operate our professional and personal interactions.