Articles by Peter Evans
For decades, the nature of global safety has been evolving. From physical security threats like large-scale terrorist attacks and lone actor stabbings to chemical threats such as the Salisbury poisonings and even microbiological threats such as COVID-19, new challenges are constantly arising and the threat landscape we operate in today is constantly changing. Compounding the complexity of the security issues is the complexity and nature of attacks. With the economic downturn, there is the traditional rise in theft, violence and other crimes. Compound this with unmanned businesses and work-at-home staff, and there is a perfect storm for a rise in security threats. Artificial intelligence (AI) and specifically the branch of AI known as machine learning (ML), was already causing widespread disruption in many industries, including the security industry. AI has been a driving force to replace labour-based business models with integrated data and actionable intelligence that is context-aware. It has become apparent that AI will play a big part in the ongoing fight against both pandemics such as COVID-19, as well as other threats that we may face in the future. With all of this in mind, 2021 is poised to be a big year for AI growth. While AI is going to continue to impact our lives in dozens of ways, from smart sensors to face mask compliance detection, the following reflects a few top trends and challenges that I have my eye on for 2021 as we close out this year. The rise of smart city investments One such example is the increasing development of smart cities and how AI can be leveraged to build safe communities. To date, we’ve seen an increase in the number of smart city programmes around the globe; cities that are beginning to deploy innovative technologies for the management and ease of life services. Compounding the complexity of the security issues is the complexity and nature of attacks Typical development of a city includes standard infrastructure - roads, schools, power, water, transportation. Now, internet, data and AI capabilities are part of the standard infrastructure requirements for all new developments. AI promises to deliver increased efficiencies with the infrastructure that will accommodate growing populations while reducing our impact on the environment, resources, and communities. Global cities now account for more than half of the world’s population, and the United Nations projects the number to balloon to 68% by mid-century. Owing to both demographic shifts and overall population growth, that means that around 2.5 billion people could be added to urban areas by the middle of the century, predicts the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA). With an increase in population has come an increase in global spending on smart city initiatives to drive down the impact of growing urban concentration. Global spending on smart city initiatives is expected to total nearly $124 billion this year, an increase of 18.9% over 2019, according to IDC's Worldwide Semiannual Smart Cities Spending Guide, while Singapore, Tokyo, London and New York as the big spenders - expected to spend more than $1 billion in 2020. Using AI-driven technology to create safer public and private spaces Today, security solutions driven by AI are being developed and can be covertly deployed across a range of physical environments to protect the population in a more efficient, and accurate manner. As we look ahead to the future of public safety, it’s clear that new AI technology can dramatically improve the effectiveness of today’s physical security space. One such deployment is the use of video object recognition/computer vision software that can be integrated into existing video monitoring security (VMS) systems. These enhanced VMS systems can be deployed both inside and outside of buildings to identify risks and flag threats, such weapons, aggressive behaviours, theft, and safety compliance. This helps to minimise the impact of a breach by an early alert to onsite security in real-time to the location and nature of the potential threat, allowing them to intervene before a loss occurs. These same AI-enabled video solutions can similarly be used to provide advanced business operations in retail, logistics, and manufacturing organisations. Multi-sensor security solutions Also, targeted magnetic and radar sensor technologies, concealed in everyday objects like planter boxes or inside walls, can now scan individuals and bags entering a building for concealed threat objects. Using AI/machine learning, these two sensor solutions combined can identify metal content on the body and bag and match the item to a catalogue of threat items, such as guns, rifles, knives and bombs. Security solutions driven by AI are being developed and can be covertly deployed across a range of physical environments Without this advanced multi-sensor solution, it becomes nearly impossible to discover a weapon on a person's body before it appears in an assailant’s hands. This multi-sensor solution allows for touchless, unobtrusive access to a building, but allows for immediate notification to onsite security when a concealed threat is detected. The hidden technology thus empowers security staff to intercept threats before they evolve into a wider scale attack, while also maintaining the privacy and civil liberties of the public, unless, of course, they are carrying a concealed weapon or pose a physical threat. With the advent of sophisticated surveillance and technological innovation, a level of caution must be exerted. Despite the ongoing global debate, there remains little regulation about the use of AI technologies in today’s physical security space. One thing is certain; it must be deployed in the right place, at the right time, with the right privacy and civil liberty protection objectives. People don’t want to be protected by omnipresent, obstructive and overbearing security systems that infringe on their privacy and civil liberties. They want a proper balance between security and their current way of life, one that must be fused together. Technology and tracing COVID-19 Machine learning-based technologies are playing a substantial role in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Traditionally, the key purpose of surveillance systems has been to detect and deter threats, including the detection of visible and hidden weapons and abnormal behaviour. While this, of course, remains a primary focus, today we are seeing how surveillance systems defend against new invisible threats, as well as rapidly automate the process of contact-tracing to capture and contain a virus before it spreads. Again, the ability to track and trace through parsing algorithms that can manage through enormous amounts of data provides a highly scalable and rapid response mechanism to control the spread of threats. AI has demonstrated potential for identifying those displaying symptoms of infectious diseases, without requiring physical human contact Although the threat may not be visible, it is just as destructive. By incorporating AI into existing technologies, government, healthcare and security professionals can monitor public spaces and environments through the combined use of digital and thermal video surveillance cameras and video management systems); just one of the solutions being explored. AI has demonstrated potential for identifying those displaying symptoms of infectious diseases, without requiring physical human contact. By Using AI-powered video analytic software, businesses can monitor face masks, social distancing and large gathering compliance and also detect elevated body temperature. Critically, technology must be capable of both identifying and tracking the virus but also be unobtrusive. An unobtrusive system that is adaptable enough to be deployed across a range of environments where the public gathers in enclosed spaces is necessary to be effective. Security in 2021 Technology has proven itself to be a valuable ally in times of crisis. For smart cities, the use of innovative AI/machine learning technologies will help optimise security solutions in areas that are brimming with potential. As we look ahead to the future of security in a world that is impacted by such a wide range of threats, from physical to chemical to microbiological, it’s clear that new technologies, specifically AI can dramatically improve the effectiveness of security systems and help us to better defend against a wide spectrum of threats. Technology has a huge role to play in making our communities safe in 2021 and beyond, but for security systems to be effective, they must not be oppressive or obstructive. This will ensure they have the full support of the public - the key to success.
Patriot One Technologies Inc. announced enhancements to its Video Recognition Software (VRS) for identifying weapons and other threats in crowds. Patriot One’s VRS is an advanced artificial intelligence (AI)-based video analytics solution that provides unprecedented accuracy in detecting threats and enabling businesses, schools, and other organisations to protect employees, students, customers, and assets. Businesses can also use their capabilities to gain valuable intelligence on customer traffic flow and behaviour to optimise operations. Accurate detection With the ability to accurately detect weapons and disturbances up to 150 feet away, Patriot One’s VRS dramatically improves security and efficiency for organisations that host crowds or the general public, including retail stores, schools, casinos, entertainment venues, and more. Real-time alerts VRS automatically validates alerts through multiple camera sources and a combination of AI analytic engines" “False positives are a huge problem with other AI-based video analysis systems, which is why their alerts need to be reviewed and validated by humans before any action can be taken. This squanders critical minutes in the incident detection and response cycle,” said Peter Evans, CEO of Patriot One. “VRS automatically validates alerts through multiple camera sources and a combination of AI analytic engines, so security staff can be correctly notified and briefed in real-time before a weapons incident or other type of disturbance arises.” Competitive compatibility Unlike competitive offerings on the market, Patriot One’s VRS is compatible with any IP-based video surveillance system, eliminating the need for customers to “rip and replace” existing video infrastructure in order to obtain the benefits of AI-enabled video analytics. “Patriot One’s VRS is highly effective at detecting weapons very early in the incident cycle, long before a perpetrator reaches a building, which dramatically increases the likelihood of being able to respond to threats before they impact employees and customers,” said Peter Giunchini, vice president, New York Security Solutions, Inc. “These advanced insights enable our customers to secure their locations and protect their stakeholders in a cost-efficient way since they don’t have to install brand new hardware to take advantage of VRS.” Key features High fidelity object recognition The system accurately detects guns while automatically distinguishing them from umbrellas, phones, or other innocuous items. Its accuracy enables the system to notify security personnel at the earliest possible point in the incident cycle, so they can de-escalate potentially violent situations quickly. People counting VRS Counting provides valuable intelligence both for crowd management and business operations, with information such as: Overall crowd size, which allows venue operators and other businesses to comply with fire and COVID-19 occupancy restrictions, as well as make smarter staffing decisions. Foot traffic in certain areas, which can be used for a variety of purposes including security staff deployment, retail merchandising business intelligence, and optimisation. Line formation and traffic management, which enables businesses to take action for a wide variety of applications, ranging from improving the customer experience at concession stands to optimising distribution center operations. Additionally, understanding customer flows at different times of day can inform staffing and operations. Detecting anomalous concentrations of people, which could indicate emerging incidents such as fights, medical emergencies, or other disturbances. A touchless threat detection system “Patriot One’s VRS gives business owners a pre-emptive technology solution that can prevent gun and other violence in the places where people gather, while also providing health and safety information that helps with compliance and operations,” Evans continued. “When coupled with Patriot One’s Multi-Sensor Gateway (MSG) touchless threat detection system for points of entry, VRS provides unparalleled security and operational intelligence across the entire physical footprint: outside, at the point of entry, and inside the building.”
iDENT LLC and Limitless Integrations LLC have announced the launch of the patent pending iDENT MODS (Mobile Onsite Detection System) that will include Patriot One Technologies Inc.’s (Patriot One) PATSCAN Multi-Sensor Threat Detection Platform with specific modules for the early detection of weapons and potential-health related threats, such as COVID-19 and other pathogenic viruses. iDENT MODS unit The iDENT MODS (Mobile Onsite Detection System) unit has been designed to be used in key public gathering locations, such as stadiums, arenas, entertainment venues, and other secure facilities. Leaders from the entertainment, professional sports, and events industries have expressed great interest in the iDENT MODS units, and its inclusion of the PATSCAN platform, to ensure a safe and secure environment for their patrons. iDENT MODS (Mobile Onsite Detection System) unit has been designed to be used in key public gathering locations The solution will be showcased over the next several months, with the intent to restore trust and confidence to their customers and allow staff and talent to return to work and play. Health safety solution The iDENT MODS unit was specifically designed in response to key entertainment and professional sports clients who were looking for an all-inclusive physical threat and health safety solution that could be used to re-open their venues safely and securely. The goal was to minimise time and inconvenience for all event goers, and venue staff at onsite security checkpoints, while providing enhanced safety and security at the venue. Touchless and frictionless security screening “These iDENT MODS offer event promoters and venue operators a touchless and frictionless security screening process for up to 1800 people per lane per hour,” explained Albert Reynolds, iDENT LLC’s Chief Operations Officer (COO) and Co-Founder. Albert adds, “Our two (2) or six (6) lane units offer great options for front of house or back of house screening to ensure customer, staff and talent safety and security as they attend their favorite programs.” Incorporating AI-powered PATSCAN platform The PATSCAN solutions leverage advanced AI capabilities, correlating data from multiple sensing devices By incorporating the PATSCAN platform’s innovative AI-powered threat detection solutions, visitors to event or sports venue can be quickly screened for visible and concealed threats at the outer perimeter of facilities’ plazas, so as to ensure that when they enter the secure area, all are ensured a great and safe experience. The PATSCAN solutions leverage advanced AI capabilities, correlating data from multiple sensing devices, in near-real time, allowing for very high accuracy, and a pre-emptive approach to minimising or eliminating risk. Enhanced threat detection By looking for, and identifying risks first, and then identifying individuals, the solution also protects all attendee’s privacy and civil liberties. If a threat is detected, whether associated with weapons, or health risks, onsite security will be immediately notified, and the individual will be flagged for additional screening before gaining access to the stadium or arena. “Opening up event venues is critical to our communities from both an economic and social perspective,” expressed Peter Evans, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Patriot One Technologies Inc. Mobile onsite detection units Peter adds, “Incorporating our PATSCAN platform threat detection solutions into these mobile onsite detection units not only provides entertainment, hospitality and retail businesses the opportunity to return to work, but it also provides event goers the confidence that they will be safe and secure as they return to their favorite entertainment and sporting events.” The iDENT MODS are constructed from mobile shipping containers The iDENT MODS are constructed from mobile shipping containers, which can be transported from one venue to another, and be quickly deployed. Event attendees, along with the onsite venue staff and talent, simply walk through a mobile checkpoint in 4 simple steps, without the need to empty their pockets of keys, cellphones, wallets, money, loose change or other personal items. These 4 steps include: Step 1: As an event attendee approaches the iDENT MODS unit, the PATSCAN VRS Weapon & Facial Mask video detection solutions identify potential visible threats in real-time. Step 2: As the attendee passes through the unit, the PATSCAN MSG multi-sensor gateway instantly scans for concealed weapons, such as larger knives, guns, sharp objects and rifles. Step 3: As the concealed weapon scan is taking place, the PATSCAN VRS-T solution scans for elevated body temperature, which may indicate a viral threat or extreme motive. Step 4: As the event attendee prepares to leave the iDENT MODS unit, they swipe their event ticket across the contactless ticketing system. Saffire Tix and block chain-based Health Passport from GetChkd Inc. have combined their technologies to create a portable contactless ticketing solution, which can be linked to an at home or on-site point of care test. Venues could require a negative COVID-19 test, health screening questionnaire, proof of identity and a temperature scan before an event goer and staff can attend and enter a stadium or an arena. Threat Detected? If at any time during this 4-step screening process a threat should be detected, then onsite security are notified in real-time, and can move the individual to a secondary screening area for further investigation, prior to providing event access. As highlighted earlier, the unveiling of the iDENT MODS unit will take place over the next few months with iDENT LLC, Patriot One Technologies and senior executives from the entertainment, events and sports facilities. Each potential client will see the working of the iDENT MODS unit and discuss their specific use cases and facility needs to meet their security and screening requirement.