Banks and financial institutions have more complex and diverse requirements for video surveillance technology than most other organisations. From corporate buildings, to branch offices, data centres, ATMs and cash depots. Several European Banks benefit from using Mirasys Video Management Software (VMS), which provides high privacy protection and robust technology.

Networking the video management system of the bank’s branch offices provides users a single logical system that can be used from any site or from an external service provider's service centre. Hence, VMS services are produced in the most cost-effective way whether it be locally, centrally or outsourced.The unique, non-fragmenting storage file system provided by Mirasys protects against hard disk failure

The Mirasys VMS checks the system performance in real time and helps to prevent system failure. Enhanced multi-disk recording minimises data loss and maximises recording continuity. The unique, non-fragmenting storage file system protects against hard disk failure.

Benefits to financial sector

Perimeter and motion detection monitors sensitive and restricted areas, such us bank vaults or safety deposit boxes, and alerts personnel only if an important event occurs, saving time and operational costs. People counting and other data reporting enables reduction of business inefficiencies and enhances customer service.

Advanced alarm management tools enable the creation of specific alarm lists based on the motion, sound or text data triggers; reducing the number of false alarms. Dwell time and stopping detects people loitering at the ATM. Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) alerts on potential threats and suspicious vehicle movement and reports on car parking utilisation.Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) alerts on potential threats and suspicious vehicle movement and reports on car parking utilisation

Recorded video watermarking guarantees the integrity and authenticity of recorded and exported video data for court evidence. User authentication and setting specific user rights ensures control of system access and protects sensitive data.

Also, product features such as audit trail and versatile material management and search functionality support, e.g., the new EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requirements. The purpose of the audit trail events is both to show what the user has done, and also to track other (programmatic) changes that change the user interface.

Key to data security is operational policies for:

  • account security (e.g., personal user accounts, instead of shared accounts, rename default administration accounts, etc.);
  • password security (don't leave systems with default passwords, don't permit too short passwords, use passphrases instead, etc.), and;
  • software and device firmware updating.

Mirasys recommends that systems are kept up to date with the latest software versions. In a networked, multi-server or multi-site environment, all Mirasys VMS servers and client applications can be centrally upgraded from the Mirasys management server.

It is also recommended to protect wide area network links with VPN (Virtual Private Networking), or other secured, connections
Manage easily various event sources in multiple locations with the flexible Mirasys Smart Event Management platform

How to protect your surveillance online

For deployments, Mirasys recommends that surveillance cameras are installed, when possible, in a private camera network, where the direct camera communications take place only inside the camera network to VMS servers, and is separate from the client access (“viewing”) network (and from the public Internet, in particular).

This also prevents the camera streaming and signalling from being forwarded inadvertently to any external systems not part of the VMS solution. In addition, camera access from outside the private network is thus not possible. It is also recommended to protect wide area network links with VPN (Virtual Private Networking), or other secured, connections.Integrated systems such as access control, intruder detection and fire alarm systems serve as sensors for the video management system

For server-to-server and client-to-server signalling, the data communication is in Mirasys VMS both compressed and encrypted by default for sensitive data (such as usernames and passwords and other details).

Integration and Internet of Things in VMS

With larger video management solutions, the integration of different systems is valuable because it allows automated functionalities that eliminate human errors and delays. Integrated systems such as access control, intruder detection and fire alarm systems serve as sensors for the video management system.

IoT (Internet of Things) is increasingly applied in the video management. The sensors continuously provide information and, if necessary, based on this information, the predefined decision chains automatically open a video connection to the event place without any delay or error. The resulting snapshot may be one image or a set of several images that supports decision making in a problem situation.

All the information is also stored for later processing. The event picture is routed either automatically or manually for people and organisations needing the information. Also, related Standard Operating Procedures can be automatically opened.Mirasys VMS is the answer to the scalability and performance needs of new camera technologies from any manufacturer

Mirasys VMS is quick and easy to install, and especially effective in networked, IP-based CCTV systems and their operational and management needs, such as centralised management and upgrading/updating of servers, drivers and client applications without requiring on-site travel to remote locations. User profiles are easy to create and change. Servers can be pre-installed and pre-configured before delivering to the deployment location.

Easy-to-use user interface

The Mirasys VMS user interface can be adapted to individual and specific needs and preferences and provides more visual space for videos without sacrificing any functionality. A HTML5 (Hypertext Markup Language, Version 5) based user interface in Version 8.4 offers easy access to the Mirasys system from anywhere; PCs, tablets or smartphones.

Video surveillance camera features are consistently improving. Image quality can be exceptionally good compared to what it used to be only a few years ago. The newest cameras also require much less network bandwidth due to more effective encoding formats, such as H.265/HEVC (from 40% up to 60% of bandwidth and storage space savings, depending on the footage and device without any loss of quality, or increased quality at the same level with the H.264/AVC encoding) that many IP camera manufacturers have started to support.

Individual servers can handle more simultaneously connected cameras than before, and the entire system has no actual upper limit. Mirasys VMS is the answer to the scalability and performance needs of new camera technologies from any manufacturer, and the Mirasys based video management system can be designed freely using the best equipment for the customer-specific requirements and can support also all future needs.

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How artificial intelligence (AI) is changing video surveillance today
How artificial intelligence (AI) is changing video surveillance today

There’s a lot of excitement around artificial intelligence (AI) today – and rightly so. AI is shifting the modern landscape of security and surveillance and dramatically changing the way users interact with their security systems. But with all the talk of AI’s potential, you might be wondering: what problems does AI help solve today? The need for AI The fact is, today there are too many cameras and too much recorded video for security operators to keep pace with. On top of that, people have short attention spans. AI is a technology that doesn’t get bored and can analyse more video data than humans ever possibly could.AI is a technology that doesn’t get bored and can analyse more video data than humans ever possibly could It is designed to bring the most important events and insight to users’ attention, freeing them to do what they do best: make critical decisions. There are two areas where AI can have a significant impact on video surveillance today: search and focus of attention. Faster search Imagine using the internet today without a search engine. You would have to search through one webpage at a time, combing through all its contents, line-by-line, to hopefully find what you’re looking for. That is what most video surveillance search is like today: security operators scan hours of video from one camera at a time in the hope that they’ll find the critical event they need to investigate further. That’s where artificial intelligence comes in. The ability of AI to reduce hours of work to mere minutes is especially significant when we think about the gradual decline in human attention spans With AI, companies such as Avigilon are developing technologies that are designed to make video search as easy as searching the internet. Tools like Avigilon Appearance Search™ technology – a sophisticated deep learning AI video search engine – help operators quickly locate a specific person or vehicle of interest across all cameras within a site. When a security operator is provided with physical descriptions of a person involved in an event, this technology allows them to initiate a search by simply selecting certain descriptors, such as gender or clothing colour. During critical investigations, such as in the case of a missing or suspicious person, this technology is particularly helpful as it can use those descriptions to search for a person and, within seconds, find them across an entire site. Focused attention           The ability of AI to reduce hours of work to mere minutes is especially significant when we think about the gradual decline in human attention spans. Consider all the information a person is presented with on a given day. They don’t necessarily pay attention to everything because most of that information is irrelevant. Instead, they prioritise what is and is not important, often focusing only on information or events that are surprising or unusual. Security operators scan hours of video from one camera at a time in the hope that they’ll find the critical event they need to investigate further Now, consider how much information a security operator who watches tens, if not hundreds or thousands of surveillance cameras, is presented with daily. After just twenty minutes, their attention span significantly decreases, meaning most of that video is never watched and critical information may go undetected. By taking over the task of "watching" security video, AI technology can help focus operators’ attention on events that may need further investigation. As AI technology evolves, the rich metadata captured in surveillance video will add even more relevance to what operators are seeing For instance, technology like Avigilon™ Unusual Motion (UMD) uses AI to continuously learn what typical activity in a scene looks like and then detect and flag unusual events, adding a new level of automation to surveillance. This helps save time during an investigation by allowing operators to quickly search through large amounts of recorded video faster, automatically focusing their attention on the atypical events that may need further investigation, enabling them to more effectively answer the critical questions of who, what, where and when. As AI technology evolves, the rich metadata captured in surveillance video – like clothing colour, age or gender – will add even more relevance to what operators are seeing. This means that in addition to detecting unusual activities based on motion, this technology has the potential to guide operators’ attention to other “unusual” data that will help them more accurately verify and respond to a security event. The key to advanced security When integrated throughout a security system, AI technology has the potential to dramatically change security operations There’s no denying it, the role of AI in security today is transformative. AI-powered video management software is helping to reduce the amount of time spent on surveillance, making security operators more efficient and effective at their jobs. By removing the need to constantly watch video screens and automating the “detection” function of surveillance, AI technology allows operators to focus on what they do best: verifying and acting on critical events. This not only expedites forensic investigations but enables real-time event response, as well. When integrated throughout a security system, AI technology has the potential to dramatically change security operations. Just as high-definition imaging has become a quintessential feature of today’s surveillance cameras, the tremendous value of AI technology has positioned it as a core component of security systems today, and in the future.

8 tips for visiting a large security trade show
8 tips for visiting a large security trade show

Security trade fairs can be daunting for attendees. At big shows like IFSEC International and Security Essen, there can be hundreds of physical security manufacturers and dealers vying for your attention. Stands are sometimes spread out across multiple halls, often accompanied by a baffling floor plan. As the scope of physical security expands from video surveillance and access control to include smart building integrations, cyber security and the Internet of Things (IoT), there is an increasing amount of information to take in from education sessions and panels. Here, SourceSecurity.com presents eight hints and tips for visitors to make the most out of trade shows: 1. Outline your objectives. As the famous saying goes, “Failing to plan is planning to fail!” Before you plan anything else, ensure you know what you need to achieve at the show. By clearly noting your objectives, you will be able to divide your time at the show appropriately, and carefully choose who you speak to. If there is a particular project your organisation is working on, search out the products and solutions that address your security challenges. If you are a security professional aiming to keep up with the latest trends and technologies, then networking sessions and seminars may be more appropriate. 2. Bring a standard list of questions Prepare a list of specific questions that will tell you if a product, solution or potential partner will help you meet your objectives. By asking the same questions to each exhibitor you speak to, you will be able to take notes and compare their offerings side by side at the end of the day. This also means you won’t get bogged down in details that are irrelevant to your goals. Most trade fair websites provide the option to filter exhibitors by their product category  3. Do your homework Once you know your objectives, you can start to research who is exhibiting and decide who you want to talk to. Lists of exhibitors can be daunting, and don’t always show you which manufacturers meet your needs. Luckily, most trade fair websites provide the option to filter exhibitors by their product category. Many exhibitions also offer a downloadable floor plan, grouping exhibitors by product category or by relevant vertical market.  It may be easier to download the floor plan to your phone/tablet or even print it out, if you don’t want to carry around a weighty map or show-guide. 4. Make a schedule Once you have shortlisted the companies you need to see, you can make a schedule that reflects your priorities. Even if you are not booking fixed meetings, a schedule will allow you to effectively manage your time, ensuring you make time for the exhibitors you can’t afford to miss. If the trade show spans several days, aim to have your most important conversations early on day one. 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Be sure to plan your attendance in advance so you can schedule the rest of your day accordingly. 6. Keep a record Armed with your objectives and list of questions, you will want to make a note of exhibitors’ responses to help you come to an informed decision. If you’re relying on an electronic device such as a smartphone or tablet to take notes, you may like to consider bringing a back-up notepad and pen, so you can continue to take notes if your battery fails. Your record does not have to be confined to written bullet points. Photos and videos are great tools remind you what you saw at the show, and they may pick up details that you weren’t able to describe in your notes. Most mobile devices can take photos – and images don’t need to be high quality if they’re just to refresh your memory. 7. Network – but don’t let small talk rule the day It may be tempting to take advantage of this time away from the office to talk about anything but business! While small talk can be helpful for building strong professional relationships, remember to keep your list of questions at hand so you can always bring conversations back to your key objectives. Keeping these goals in mind will also help you avoid being swayed by any unhelpful marketing-speak. It may seem obvious, but don’t forget to exchange business cards with everyone you speak to, or even take the opportunity to connect via LinkedIn. Even if something doesn’t seem relevant now, these contacts may be useful in future. Have a dedicated section in your bag or briefcase for business cards to avoid rummaging around. With your most important conversations planned carefully, there should be time left to explore the show more freely 8. Schedule time for wandering With your most important conversations planned carefully, there should be time left to explore the show more freely. Allowing dedicated time to wander will give you a welcome break from more pressing conversations, and may throw up a welcome surprise in the form of a smaller company or new technology you weren’t aware of.  Security trade fair checklist: Photo Identification: As well as your event pass, some events require photo identification for entry. Notebook & pen: By writing as you go, you will be able to compare notes at the end of the day. Mobile device: Photos and videos are great tools to remind you what you saw at the show, and may pick up details you missed in your notes. Paper schedule & floor plan: In case batteries or network service fail. Business cards: Have a dedicated pouch or pocket for these to avoid rummaging at the bottom of a bag. Comfortable shoes: If you’re spending a whole day at an event, and plan on visiting multiple booths, comfortable shoes are a must!

What are the obstacles to adoption of mobile credentials for access control?
What are the obstacles to adoption of mobile credentials for access control?

Using a smart phone as an access control credential is an idea whose time has come – or has it? The flexible uses of smart phones are transforming our lives in multiple ways, and the devices are replacing everything from our alarm clocks to our wallets to our televisions. However, the transformation from using a card to using a mobile credential for access control is far from a no-brainer for many organisations, which obstacles to a fast or easy transition. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: When will mobile credentials dominate access control, and what are the obstacles to greater adoption?