Campus security systems
Security is among the defining topics at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2019 this week in Las Vegas. More than 4,500 exhibiting companies are participating, including some 1,200 startups, highlighting the next wave of innovation in consumer electronics – and security. Twenty-four product categories at CES feature solutions to transform how consumers live, work and play. Technologies being highlighted include 5G connectivity, artificial intelligence (AI), augmented and virtual reality...
Maxxess will be at Intersec 2019 showcasing its latest advances in corporate risk reduction, improved people management and smarter hospitality access solutions - including new releases in its popular eFusion and Ambit solutions. The latest version of the VisitorPoint module within the eFusion security management platform will be showcased, offering a host of new streamlined functions for efficient people and visitor management. Harnessing current advances in cloud computing and mobile communic...
Campus environments experience many challenges when it comes to securing their students and faculty. As traditional CCTV solutions were no longer able to meet the needs for long hour storage with high quality images, authorities started looking for an advanced surveillance solution. Surveon provides campus solutions with complete product lines, enabling a campus to provide students and faculty a safe learning environment. To provide evidence for investigation of crime, the data retention of rec...
Whether you need to protect a single facility or an entire campus of commercial buildings, the UL listed XR Series Access/Burglary/Fire control panels by Digital Monitoring Products (DMP) are up to the task. With its recent XR Series Version 182 update, this can-do panel now offers even more features and functionality. XR Series control panel Now customers using the XR Series control panel have increased speed, reliability, and greater distance in controlling Z-Wave Plus devices using their Vi...
Governments and corporations face crisis events every day. An active shooter terrorises a campus. A cyber extortionist holds a city for ransom. A hurricane washes away a key manufacturing facility. Not all critical events rise to the level of these catastrophic emergencies, but a late or inadequate response to even a minor incident can put people, operations and reputations at risk. Effective response plan In 2015, for example, the City of Boston experienced several record-breaking snowstorms...
Rhombus Systems, an enterprise video security startup, is redefining video security for businesses around the world with their AI-powered security camera – the Rhombus R1. This next-generation security camera has the ability to learn and alert users to an unidentified person, making threat detection faster than ever before. Rhombus’s video security system continuously analyses video to help organisations better secure their physical spaces. Today the company announced a $3 million se...
Code Blue Corporation is proud to return this September as sponsor for National Campus Safety Awareness Month (NCSAM). During NCSAM, Clery Center will partner with colleges, universities and other organisations to provide professional development opportunities that address the background of certain campus safety areas and strategies for talking about those areas with campus community members. “Code Blue heavily values the safety and security of each and every student on college campuses around the nation,” Code Blue Director of Distribution Katie Petre said. “We strongly support the mission of Clery Center and are more than happy to help sponsor this awareness initiative.” Promoting campus safety through education NCSAM was unanimously approved by Congress in 2008 to encourage a public conversation on important topics in violence prevention at our nation’s colleges and universities. In 2017, more than 1,300 people from nearly 1,000 organisations participated in NCSAM’s free webinar series, with access to additional tools and resources. Clery Center is a national non-profit organisation focused on promoting college and university campus safety Clery Center is a national non-profit organisation focused on promoting college and university campus safety through education, awareness, policy, and prevention initiatives. Free of cost training “This year’s NCSAM campaign — What’s Your Message? — helps institutions reflect and improve upon the many ways they communicate critical safety messages and provides new strategies for reaching their campus communities,” Clery Center Interim Executive Director Abigail Boyer said. “NCSAM launches a year-long conversation about how campuses can best support their students and employees and we’re thrilled to again partner with Code Blue to provide training and resources at no cost during the month of September.”
Vicon Industries, Inc., designer and manufacturer of video surveillance and access control software, hardware and components, announced the launch of Valerus 18.2, the latest version of its popular thin-client VMS solution built upon true open standards. New to this release are features that include: automated NVR failover, enhanced configuration options that include an enhanced rules engine that can respond to external events, tighter controls for system access authorisations and network-wide log collection and reporting. It also offers support for Valerus SmartAnalytics, a soon-to-be-released, tightly integrated video analytics solution that offers real-time event detection, video search and business intelligence applications. Valerus’ new NVR failover option allows administrators to create ‘failover clusters’ within the network, in which one or more NVRs are identified as dedicated failover units to support primary NVRs. Failover NVRs automatically take over for primary NVRs within their cluster, maintaining all camera and system settings until the original NVR is restored to operation. Playback of recorded video remains seamless, eliminating the need for operators to know exactly when failover occurred. Valerus automatically retrieves video from the NVR on which it resides. Valerus SmartAnalytics for event detection Valerus SmartAnalytics can analyse video from multiple sources in parallel and allows for complex detection scenarios that link detection rules from different cameras The addition of Valerus SmartAnalytics as an option for users of Valerus 18.2 brings powerful, integrated analytics capabilities to the VMS platform. The Valerus SmartAnalytics engine applies detection rules based on sophisticated AI algorithms to provide live action alerts, post-event search and business intelligence trend analysis. Valerus SmartAnalytics can analyse video from multiple sources in parallel and allows for complex detection scenarios that link detection rules from different cameras. Unlimited combinations of analytics detection rules can be applied to each camera. Events and search tools appear within the Valerus interface, providing a simplified experience for system operators. Both NVR failover and Valerus SmartAnalytics support are offered through a new ‘enterprise’ level Valerus licensing tier. The Valerus SmartAnalytics modules will be available to customers running Valerus Enterprise, version 18.2, beginning in early fall, 2018. Customers currently running Valerus Pro or Core level software can easily upgrade to Enterprise without the need for camera relicensing or hardware replacement. Improving security staff’s situational awareness In keeping with the Valerus commitment to delivering ‘advanced simplicity’, Valerus 18.2 offers a simplified but more powerful system configuration user interface. Administrators can now use the Valerus rules engine to create multi-step automated actions in response to events generated by external systems. Administrators must now actively provide each user with access to Valerus resources by assigning him or her to one or more ‘roles’ – Admin, Operator, Supervisor and/or Investigator For example, an integrated LPR system’s identification of a black listed vehicle can prompt Valerus to immediately call up relevant cameras and send a text alert to specified operators, improving security staff’s situational awareness and ability to respond quickly. The configuration interface now simplifies load balancing, making it easier to move cameras between NVRs, and provides additional navigation buttons for jumping between the device and resource screens. Enhanced security through authorisation system Valerus 18.2 offers enhanced security through an updated authorisation system. Administrators must now actively provide each user with access to Valerus resources by assigning him or her to one or more ‘roles’ – Admin, Operator, Supervisor and/or Investigator. Assigned roles determine which resources are available to each user upon logging in. For support and maintenance teams, a single request can now provide system-wide software logs from all devices, making it easier to troubleshoot. “Vicon’s Valerus VMS platform has proven to be hugely popular in enterprise applications, from citywide and statewide surveillance systems, to healthcare and education campuses, to the largest Cathedral in the world. We anticipate that the features we are introducing with Valeurs 18.2 will do much to further that trend,” said Bret McGowan, Senior V.P. of Sales and Marketing.
A half-day Secure Schools Roundtable was held on Capitol Hill as part of the Security Industry Association (SIA) GovSummit 2018. Legislators, academics, emergency services experts and more discussed the need for enhanced school security in the wake of tragedies in schools across the United States, including the February 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Student Jake Glacer, a survivor of the Parkland shooting, and his father, Noel Glacer, discussed Jake’s experiences on the day of the shooting and the school’s lack of a standard operating procedure for dealing with an active shooter incident. “We used to live in the Parkland bubble, and now we live under the Parkland cloud,” said Noel. Jake and Noel emphasised the need for better school security solutions, training and drills School security solutions Jake and Noel emphasised the need for better school security solutions, training and drills and encouraged people interested in contributing to Parkland’s school security to visit sosparkland.org. “I’m trying to take a bad situation and do good out of it,” said Jake. “If I could save one life by talking about this, it’s worth it.” Reps. Rick Larsen (D-Wash.) and Susan Brooks (R-Ind.) – co-chairs of the Congressional School Safety Caucus – also spoke at the roundtable, highlighting the importance of legislation like the STOP School Violence Act and efforts like research on the causes of gun violence to address this important issue. “Kids should be worried about learning, not whether their schools will be the next to fall victim to tragedy,” said Larsen. Secure Schools Roundtable: Opening Remarks Speakers: Tim Eckersley, Senior Vice President and President of the Americas, Allegion Rick Larsen (D-Wash.), Co-Chair, Congressional School Safety Caucus Susan Brooks (R-Ind.), Co-Chair, Congressional School Safety Caucus Quotes: “Kids not only need tools to learn – they need an environment that allows them to thrive. If kids are worried about the safety in their schools and surviving in school, there’s no way they can succeed.” – Tim Eckersley “It’s our moral obligation as an industry to address this issue.” – Tim Eckersley “While no one law can stop school violence, the STOP School Violence Act has steps Congress can take to save lives and make schools safer.” – Rick Larsen The session highlighted standards and best practices for school security, including research conducted by the Police FoundatBest practices for school security Secure Schools Roundtable: Development of Standards and Best Practices for School Security Speakers: Erroll Southers, Professor of the Practice of Governance, University of Southern California Ben Gorban, Policy Analyst, Police Foundation John Montes, Emergency Services Specialist, National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Mark Williams, Steering Committee Director, Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS) School facility security standards Summary: This session highlighted standards and best practices for school security, including research conducted by the Police Foundation on state school facility security standards, requirements and guidelines, the NFPA 3000 standard for active shooter incidents and PASS’ work to help schools implement effective school security technologies. Quotes: “I never thought we’d reach a time where I’d be called to respond to school shooting incidents because they exceed homegrown terrorism.” – Dr. Erroll Southers “It shouldn’t take an incident – but when it does, policies like tax reform go out the window and school safety becomes #1. We shouldn’t wait until an incident occurs.” – Ben Gorban “[The impact of a school shooting] doesn’t end when it stops being reported on CNN – it goes on forever.” – John Montes
The upgraded Rave Guardian app now integrates with Rave Alert and allows college communities to easily connect through a custom mobile app. Rave Mobile Safety (Rave), a trusted partner for safety software protecting millions of individuals, revealed updates to its Rave Guardian platform to better equip students and staff to communicate vital campus updates. Rave Guardian, a safety app available for students to stay connected with campus safety officials, faculty and other students, now integrates into Rave Alert, allowing higher education institutions access to both offerings in a single platform. Rave Guardian has been updated to better reach and engage students on mobile devices since they find email and phone calls to be outdated. Students aren't interested in Facebook and Twitter; rather they prefer closed messaging apps like Snapchat and WhatsApp. In fact, Generation Z students are three times more likely to open a chat message through a push notification. However, in a recent survey of higher education institutions, Rave found only 38% of respondents offer a mobile safety app for their campus communities. The lack of institution-backed app adoption on campus shows the opportunity for colleges to implement innovative technology, like Rave Guardian, to better connect with students. Integrated geo-targeting notifications The new Rave Guardian platform ensures that all tools, from two-way texting features to content directories with information such as specific safety procedures, are united in a single application. Unlike any other communications application available, Rave Guardian provides geo-targeting notifications so campus safety officials can target certain areas of campus with specific alerts. Those alerts are even available when students and faculty may not have cell signals. The app also allows for students to share a live stream of their location with campus safety if they feel they're in a dangerous situation. "Since adopting Rave technology, the ability to quickly and accurately share information has made all three of our campuses safer," said Charles S. DiSalvo, Emergency Manager at Monroe Community College in Rochester, N.Y. "We have seen a 22% increase in the use of Rave Guardian, so it's become integral to how we communicate public safety information." With a push of a button, students can either directly connect to 9-1-1 or campus safety in an emergency Rave Guardian campus communication app With one app to access campus communication tools, resources and key contacts, colleges don't have to rely on outdated communication methods to interact and engage with students. Additional benefits and features in the new version of Rave Guardian include: One platform: In two steps, anyone in your campus community is instantly authenticated and can register. Students can update their Rave Alert profiles and always keep their contact information up-to-date. Content portal: Emergency procedures, shuttle schedules and other key resources can be shared with the campus community in a configurable content library to help them stay safe and informed. Call directory: Enable students and staff to easily find assistance and resources through a call directory of important numbers that can be updated and added to in real time. Routable chats: Two-way communications can now be routed to different departments to ensure they're only seen by the appropriate officials. In addition, departments can enable custom auto-responses when their offices are closed. Push notifications: Alongside SMS text and email capabilities, push notifications allow schools to provide messages to students and staff even without cell service and capture more attention. App customisation: Schools can customise Rave Guardian's interface and features in real time to create a user experience that will drive more interaction with their community. Emergency call button: With a push of a button, students can either directly connect to 9-1-1 or campus safety in an emergency. Even when they dial 9-1-1 from the app, the school is notified through the incident management console. "The update to the Rave Guardian platform offers our university and college customers with essential tools to promote safety across their campuses," said Todd Piett, CEO of Rave Mobile Safety. "These latest features will drive greater adoption by students and will promote more participation with campus safety."
Robotic Assistance Devices, Inc. (RAD), an innovator in the delivery of artificial intelligence-based solutions that empower organisations to gain new insight, announced it has released its latest version of the Security Control and Observation Tower (SCOT): Wally, a wall-mounted security solution that harnesses the power of AI to enhance an organisation's situational awareness, communication abilities and control. SCOT Wally provides organisations with 110 degrees of visibility and takes full advantage of the RAD Software Suite, which is a collection of integrated software applications hosted in Microsoft’s Azure Cloud services that allows immediate and mobile access to alerts and controls generated by SCOT. Scaled security applications Priced at two-thirds less than the original SCOT tower, SCOT Wally can be used in lobbies, parking structures, corporate campuses or exterior areas. “SCOT Wally builds on the success of our original SCOT solution, providing a wall-mounted version for organisations looking to scale their security teams in a way that is good for the bottom line,” said Steve Reinharz, President and CEO, RAD. “This unique security solution can be paired with other original SCOT deployments or be used on its own.” Long-range human detection analytics SCOT solutions, including SCOT Wally, are equipped with AI-centric technology that powers human detection analytics, featuring long-range detection at low false-alarm rates. SCOT Wally will be demonstrated for the first time at the upcoming BOMA 2018 International Conference and Expo for the commercial real estate market, June 23-26, in San Antonio, Texas, alongside its partners at Allied Universal (Booth #704).
University campus buildings and student accommodation facilities are complex infrastructures and, with so many security requirements, it can be difficult to keep on top of them and the challenges they impose. Andrew Shaw, architectural consultant for Allegion UK, discusses how to ensure the security and safety of the students of today and tomorrow. Many UK universities treat safety and security as a feature hard-wired into their systems, as young adults and their parents are citing safety when it comes to important factors when choosing a university. It’s listed in prospectuses and on university websites to ensure that current and prospective students, staff and parents alike have a clear idea of the safety and security procedures in place. Security teams must consider high-traffic areas, access for all, student turnover, fire safety measures, security of people and belongings Eliminating the possibility of crimes Student accommodation and campus facilities can pose many security challenges, and with the high turnover of students, keeping track of access is important. This not only allows the responsible persons to keep everything running smoothly and safely, it also helps to eliminate the possibility of certain crimes. Security teams must consider high-traffic areas, access for all, student turnover, fire safety measures, security of people and belongings, as well as efficient and smooth people movement. Choosing the right doors and door hardware Every October, universities must ensure that everything – from individual student data records to premises refurbishment and site safety – is in place to welcome new and returning students, staff and visitors. This means that throughout the academic year as well as over the summer and other holidays, universities have a constant obligation to keep safety and security standards high. It’s important to give the appropriate thought to which doors and door hardware are suitable to specific requirements, to maximise security and, in-turn, student safety and wellbeing In student accommodation, for instance, students may be living there for approximately eight months of the academic year. They’ll then vacate the premises, which are readied for the next intake of students. Student accommodation has also been previously criticised for poor design, especially when it comes to fire safety and general security. With that in mind, it’s important to give the appropriate thought to which doors and door hardware are suitable to specific requirements, to maximise security and, in-turn, student safety and wellbeing. In campus facilities, too, the buildings must cater to the ebb and flow of those entering and exiting premises. Therefore, doors and door hardware must facilitate access and egress, particularly in high-traffic areas. Combining mechanical locks with electronic access control When it comes to university accommodation, without a key handover strategy in place, how can universities be sure their students have adequate access? For example, some access control systems allow tracking of who accesses and exits a premise. They also easily issue and retract credentials, allowing someone access as easily as it can be taken away. Conversely, traditional mechanical locks can be beneficial both as a stand-alone solution and as a combination with electronic access control. Ultimately, all design aspects of a particular building must be considered before arriving at a product choice. The variety of choice available means universities can opt for hardware that suits their needs, even when faced with budgeting pressures. Every university campus has both exterior and interior sections, so implementing an adequate lockdown plan must include both of these layers Implementing effective lockdown strategy The Complete University Guide states that an estimated one-third of the UK’s student body becomes a victim of crime (mainly theft and burglary). When you also consider the vast number of new students moving away from home to university, it’s easy to understand how their lack of knowledge about a certain area may make them susceptible to victimisation. One focus for optimising security in university facilities and accommodation is to put in place an effective lockdown strategy. Every university campus has both exterior and interior sections, so implementing an adequate lockdown plan must include both of these layers. On top of this, it can be easy to make the mistake of carrying out dangerous or ineffective methods without recognising them as so. For example, using tape, magnets or other barricades on a door could not only invite security risks but is also a breach of fire safety regulations. Doors and door hardware that facilitate maximum egress can help to improve evacuation and prevent unnecessary stagnation of movement Fire safety protocols A sufficient evacuation plan as well as high-quality doors and door hardware can help to keep students and staff safe. In the event of a fire, students and staff must be clear on what is expected of them to ensure a smooth and effective evacuation. Doors and door hardware that facilitate maximum egress can help to improve evacuation and prevent unnecessary stagnation of movement. Specifically, hold-open devices are linked up to the fire alarm so that in the event of a fire, the doors release immediately and then return to a closed position. Similarly, exit devices (such as panic bars or emergency exit devices) open without keys and are easily accessible, to allow a functional exit if needed. Selecting the right solution for university security When it comes to university security, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. The age of the buildings, credential platform and protocols, budget and long-term security strategy must be considered. A lack of product knowledge, older buildings and too much choice can all lead to a reluctance to upgrade old systems or even the wrong selection of products. With effective lockdowns and locking systems being of high importance, it’s important to recognise the industry fallacies and steer clear from the risks posed by ‘value engineering’. Wherever you are on the continuum, there are solutions fit for your specific requirements.
Schools today are charged to provide an environment that is both safe and conducive to learning, which can be difficult considering the range of security incidents and challenges they face, including bullying, fights, graffiti, theft and more. In addition to working within often tight budgetary constraints, a main challenge is to provide the highest level of security in an aesthetically pleasing way that doesn’t make students feel as if they are in prison. While these two needs may seem mutually exclusive to some degree, that doesn’t have to be the case. School security can be achieved without building 20-foot walls or putting barbed wire around the perimeter. The key to balancing the security and learning environment can be found in the four pillars of a good school security strategy, namely people, practices, technology and physical environment. A mobile app or text notification system could be used to alert students and staff of potential problems Situational awareness One of the most effective measures to take is to educate staff and even students to learn to be aware about their surroundings and adopt the 'If you see something, say something' mentality. In an emergency, time is of the essence, so the speed of response becomes critical. Educating staff and students to recognise potential problems and report them is a good first step. Augmenting this with mobile apps and/or texting capabilities, for example, that allow someone to send a photo to school security or law enforcement for quick assessment and evaluation, can speed response even more. A mobile app or text notification system could also be used to alert students and staff of potential problems and provide instructions on what steps to take in order to remain safe. By providing real-time situational awareness about potential responses, these types of technologies can reduce the number of armed guards or resource officers needed to patrol a school or campus, which also makes students more comfortable and able to learn in a non-prison-like environment. Security best practices Every school should establish a set of security policies and procedures and ensure that staff and students understand what to do if they suspect a problem or if an incident should unfold at the school. However, too often, schools may not know where to start when seeking out best practices. And once these policies are in place, there may be confusion about how to audit them to ensure people are properly educated. The NFPA has begun work on a school security standard that would address a range of issues schools face on a daily basis A number of organisations are available to aid with this process, such as the Partner Alliance for School Safety a group founded in cooperation with SIA (Security Industry Association), which provides resources and tools to help schools and security professionals evaluate and establish the best security protection for their buildings. These guidelines and best practices are designed to help schools spend their often limited funds on the right security solutions. Safe and Sound Schools provides downloadable school security toolkits, and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has recently released the NFPA 3000 Active shooter response guidelines and has begun work on a school security standard that would address a range of issues schools face on a daily basis. The key takeaway is that the information is out there, and the organisations mentioned above are excellent resources for helping schools create safe, secure and learning-conducive environments. Technology in school security The second thing that needs to be considered is how technology can be brought to bear to contribute to school security. Video surveillance with video analytics can be deployed to monitor areas at certain times of day. For example, once school starts, there shouldn’t be a lot of activity in the parking lot or in particular areas around the school. For these situations, intelligent cameras with video analytics can be used to detect activity in those areas of interest to alert school security that something may need their attention. This might be a vehicle entering a lot or driving against the normal traffic flow, which may simply be a parent arriving to pick their child up early, or it could be something worth following up on. Radar detection is ideal for perimeters, where a device can be set up unobtrusively to alert when someone enters a particular area In any case, this is something that should be brought to the attention of someone who can quickly assess the situation and determine what, if any, response is needed. Because the goal in a potentially dangerous situation is speed response times. The faster you’re able to detect something using technology, the faster you’re able to respond. Therefore, being able to identify something happening in a parking lot and alert school resource officers could provide 30 seconds or a minute head start for response, which can get the school into a lockdown situation and get first responders on site more quickly.Facial recognition systems and providing access through smartphones could help create a more welcoming and secure environment for students, staff and parents After-hour monitoring solutions Monitoring buildings and facilities after hours presents a different set of challenges. For sporting events, the National Center for Spectator Sports and Security (NCS4) at the University of Southern Mississippi provides best practice guidance for sporting facilities and events not only just for universities but even including those at high schools. It’s been shown that using lighting at night can deter crime. However, it can be expensive to keep a building and grounds illuminated all night, every night. To mitigate these concerns and potential costs, there are video cameras available with extreme low-light capability that allows them to see in near-dark or in some cases complete darkness. This allows a school to save money by turning lights off while achieving a level of surveillance performance similar to daytime deployments. Radar detection Another technology for effective school security, both during and after school hours, is radar detection. This is ideal for perimeters, where a device can be set up unobtrusively to alert when someone enters a particular area. Radar can be deployed with a single PTZ camera, which can track whatever has been detected to provide real-time situational awareness for a school resource officer or law enforcement to investigate to determine the potential threat, if any, related to the perimeter breach.Following the four pillars of school security can ease the process while improving the effectiveness and efficiency of securing educational facilities More often than not, schools are faced with issues that are not necessarily the worst-case scenario everyone fears, such as how to identify parents and others who are authorised to pick a child up from school early. In this instance, facial recognition systems and providing access through smartphones could help create a more welcoming and secure environment for students, staff and parents. Lighting and landscaping In addition to technology, one of the things that can contribute to a safer school environment is environmental design. CPTED provides four basic principles, one of which is natural surveillance, which follows a 'see and be seen' philosophy. In other words, when people know they can be seen, they are less likely to commit a crime. The main points in this general principle are lighting and landscaping. For example, a school doesn’t want to block potentially vulnerable areas with landscaping, so the height and thickness of any potential landscaping elements should be carefully considered. In general, openness and visibility should be the guiding factors. Securing physical environment Another aspect of the physical environment is maintenance. If a window gets broken but isn’t fixed right away, that tends to invite vandalism. These are just two of the guidelines CPTED offers for creating a more secure environment that doesn’t feel like a prison. In general, finding the right mix between maintaining security and providing a welcoming, aesthetically pleasing and learning-conducive environment can seem like a difficult – if not impossible – task. Following the four pillars of school security can ease the process while improving the effectiveness and efficiency of securing educational facilities.
Over the course of the past few months, I have discussed a myriad of topics, from Big Data, the Internet of Things and emerging video surveillance-use cases, to analytics, storage complexities and IT technologies like virtualisation and hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI). All of these trends have a significant effect on the security market, and in April they were highlighted in spades at ISC West. It’s great to talk about these trends but it’s far better to see how they are being leveraged in real-world applications. That’s really where we can all see the true value of new solutions and concepts. We’re lucky enough to work with some leading organisations that want others to benefit from their experience and I’m happy to have the opportunity to share two of these applications with you. Protecting educational facilities UCF has adopted advancements in technology, particularly video surveillance solutions, to help ensure stronger security on campus Educational institutions face an increasingly complex risk environment. Recent high-profile incidents emphasise these risks and magnify the vulnerabilities that educational facilities face. These incidents have led to more public demand for improved security solutions across campuses. The primary mission of these organisations is to deliver quality education to students, and they face the challenge of balancing between a highly secure facility and one that supports open interaction. The University of Central Florida is no different. This organisation, one of the largest universities in the country, has adopted advancements in technology, particularly video surveillance solutions, to help ensure stronger security on campus. Active shooter incidents In March 2013, UCF faced an active shooter situation in which a former student planned to pull the fire alarm in a residence hall and then attack his classmates as the building was evacuated. However, the shooter’s gun jammed, and as officers were closing in on the gunman, he took his own life. During the university’s response to the incident, accessibility to critical video data was a major issue. Educational institutions face an increasingly complex risk environment UCF had cameras in the area where the incident took place, but first responders had no way of viewing the footage without being at the physical location of the video recorder. At the time, UCF had a wide variety of standalone systems in place, including non-integrated video surveillance, access control and intrusion systems. As a result, there was no way to centralise video management, viewing and analysis. Upgrading from analogue systems Altogether, its security system consisted of older analogue platforms that were reaching end of life, 58 standalone servers, 12,000 access points and a wide variety of DVRs — all being managed in a siloed manner. UCF needed a solution that would allow officials to centralise system management, store video data more effectively and reliably, and enable the security team to deliver situational awareness to responders when needed. Security leaders sought a way to further modernise its security, surveillance, access control and IT infrastructure The university deployed an HCI solution, one that is optimised for demanding, data-intensive workloads like video surveillance. Using standard off-the-shelf server hardware, the system aggregates the storage and compute resources from multiple servers into a single unified pool that all cameras can access, which maximises performance and storage capacity utilisation. The platform also hosts the university’s video management solution, which serves as a centralised source to manage video and effectively protect its security data. Because of the growing demand for video across UCF's campuses — for both safety and business purposes — the HCI solution’s ability to eliminate the opportunity for data loss and easily scale were key components in its selection. Protecting air travel and airports In 2012, Charleston International Airport embarked on an ambitious upgrade project dubbed the Terminal Redevelopment and Improvement Program. The $200 million initiative was designed to modernise and expand the facility to meet increased passenger demand. While the aesthetics and amenities of the airport were under construction, security leaders sought a way to further modernise its security, surveillance, access control and IT infrastructure. The IT and security teams needed to address the challenges of their existing standalone server environment, which included siloed systems, management complexity and high administrative and equipment costs. Charleston International Airport embarked on an ambitious upgrade project dubbed the Terminal Redevelopment and Improvement Program Considering the high value of the airport’s video, security and IT data, it required a solution that could deliver reliable data protection, system resiliency and fault tolerance. The airport is required to store video for 30 days, but it seeks to expand its retention time to 60 days. Therefore, technology that can scale simply was key in the selection process. Storage system updates It also required a storage platform that could manage the demanding and write-intensive nature of its nearly 250 IP surveillance cameras — a challenging task for traditional video recorders. The airport deployed HCI appliances to better manage captured video data and expand its archive capability for video surveillance. Users rely on video to validate whether something did or did not happen - and this is essential in airports HCI surveillance solutions are designed to provide industry-leading resiliency. Even if multiple hardware failures occur, including an entire appliance, video management servers will remain online and recording, and any previously recorded video will continue to be protected and accessible. Reducing expenses and costs The solution also reduced total cost of operations by consolidating servers, storage and client workstations into one enterprise-class solution that is easily managed from a single user interface, without the need for specialised IT skills. These use cases demonstrate the value emerging technologies bring to these types of modern environments. And they show that solutions like HCI are no longer simply much-talked about technology trends. Video, IT and security data is critical to organisations of all types and they need to ensure their investment in capturing this data is protected. From a security standpoint, users rely on video to validate whether something did or did not happen. If that video data isn’t protected, they lose a very valuable investigative tool. That isn’t an option in today’s complex environment. That’s is why it is paramount to understand how new technologies can help expand current capabilities and evolve security operations. This can’t be left to chance.
When asked about what the market should be thinking about in 2018, I am left offering an answer that serves as an urgent call to action: prepare yourself for change! The security industry is soon likely to see a dramatic shift from the traditional segmentation of commercial and residential security. Smart phones, mobile technologies, cloud computing, and having everything provided ‘as a service’ in peoples’ lives means users of buildings have a new set of expectations. In many ways, the coming crosspollination of residential and commercial security offerings means we will have a better idea of best practices. The convenience of residential spaces will combine with the robust security of commercial facilities, for example. But this also means a higher level of demand will be placed on security integrators, facility managers and owners. Operations groups may need to change drastically to offer new technologies. Security as a service is likely to become more common. And new technologies are emerging that will facilitate this change and require new skillsets and expertise. So, what the market should be thinking about right now is: how do we all, collectively, keep up? More critical is finding ways to offer or utilise new technologies and total solutions that make operations easier Ensuring security preparedness As it stands now, in terms of physical security for doors and openings, we are currently in a world where we can secure almost anything. Be it hospital, school, file cabinet, server rack, grain silo or barn that is off the electrical grid, we have a solution for that. So being hyper-aware of your industry, its offerings, and how the products work together is important, as it means every location that needs security can have security. But perhaps more critical is finding ways to offer or utilise new technologies and total solutions that make operations easier, moving security components deeper into a building, facility or campus, and building and leveraging on partnerships where everyone is invested in the other’s success. Here are a few suggestions for addressing these issues. Training in new security solutions Perhaps the biggest change in the near term will be emerging technologies that will alter how we currently use security solutions. Be it cloud-based security, intelligent keys, new types of credentials, or simply a better software for management, the need to be well-versed on these offerings is key. To this end, it is important to not only know what offerings exist in the security world, but also be well-trained on them. Seek out a manufacturer that is willing to offer training and education on products, strategies and solutions. While it is important to secure server rooms at the point of entry, it might also make sense to provide a cabinet lock with audit capabilities on the rack or cabinet itself Identifying an end goal Further, approach the integration and implementation of these technologies with a collaborative mindset. For dealers and integrators this means utilising new technologies to better secure a facility for a client. As a building owner or manager, it means making tenant and occupant life better while streamlining your own operations. The ultimate goal of any new technology is to meet customer needs in the very best possible way. And that goal should trickle down from manufacturer to integrator to the facility manager and ultimately the end user. Don’t just implement technology for the sake of doing so. Do it with purpose by identifying an end goal and utilising these amazing solutions to achieve that. Identifying an end goal also means seeking out the core requirements a building has to provide users with the expected level of security and service. This is obviously dependent on the building, and it doesn’t always mean physically moving into a building, but rather looking at ways to move further into the operations of a business. Securing access to buildings Government facilities are undergoing a transition to security requirements dictated by the FICAM programme For some businesses, keeping server racks or file cabinets secure can be critical. And while it is important to secure these rooms at the point of entry, it might also make sense to provide a cabinet lock with audit capabilities on the rack or cabinet itself. New opportunities also fall into this category. Government facilities are currently undergoing a transition to security requirements dictated by the Federal Government’s Identity, Credential, and Access Management (FICAM) programme. FICAM sets standards for implementation of secure access to all government facilities and mandates the use of FIPS 201 Personal Identity Verification (PIV) for federal employees and contractors. This means that PIV enabled access points will be required on the perimeters, interiors and other openings. Finding ways to retrofit these affordably, efficiently and effectively means offering more secure openings on what is likely to be a tight budget. This can also apply to offsite facilities. Earlier I mentioned barns and grain silos – locations that are often left off electrical grids but can come with the need for auditing capabilities – and a solution exists for that. So, while a corporate headquarters might be under robust lock and key, it is always good to ask about other locations that could use a simple security upgrade. Personal Identity Verification-enabled access points will be required on the perimeters, interiors and other openings Establishing security partnerships Again, the best way to achieve readiness with this approach is to be aware of the market and its offerings, and to engage in collaborative partnerships. Collaborative partnerships are critical for everyone who is tasked with protecting the people and places that matter most. Manufacturers rely on the integrators and building supervisors to understand the new and developing needs in the industry. Integrators then must rely on manufacturers to provide these solutions, offer education and training, and be in constant contact about the newest technologies available. Collaborative partnerships are critical for everyone who is tasked with protecting the people and places that matter mostAnd building owners or managers must both be aware of their tenant and end user needs and demands – be it for new technologies or even seeking out sustainability solutions. In turn, they need to know they can rely on a collaborative approach from an integrator and manufacturer who is invested in their success. Industry collaboration for a secure future Again, the biggest thing we must all need to consider now is how to prepare for the future. Treading water is simply not enough in the security market anymore. New technologies and performance expectations are forcing us to consider ways to better serve our clients – whether we are a manufacturer, integrator or in charge of facilities. And the best way to do this is together. We are all invested in the success of one another, and in the people who use the places we strive to keep safe. By seeking out, developing, and cultivating these partnerships in collaboration and innovation, we are able to help one another prepare for the future that is becoming more complex, intriguing and exciting every day.
Qognify’s security management systems compile information from a variety of sensors to provide situational awareness, and now they can leverage the benefit of a different kind of sensor, what the company calls the “human sensor.” Employees see and hear a lot of information during their work day, and some of it has an impact on security. Now that information can become part of an integrated security system, reported by trusted employees through a smart phone app. Qognify’s Extend adds new capabilities to the company’s existing Situator physical security information management (PSIM) and VisionHub video management; it’s a new element in Qognify’s interconnected product portfolio. Using smartphones to report incidents The Extend Mobile Solutions Suite enables systems to leverage the “human sensor” by equipping employees (or students in a campus environment) with an easy-to-use app on their smart phones. If a user sees or hears something, they can initiate an “incident” through the smart phone app’s “See It Send It” function. The app can also provide protection for a student or employee with a GuardMe function that enables a security operations centre to hear an employee, see their location and monitor their progress from Point A to Point B, reporting any distress situations along the way. The system also provides mass notification capabilities (using smart phones) without the installation of any software or hardware. “The best sensor is the human sensor,” says Dharmesh V. Patel, Qognify’s global business initiatives vice president. “At an airport, you may have 20,000 employees, and they each know if something is awry because they work there all day long.” A reported incident might not even be a security issue; it could be something as simple as a slippery floor. Live Video Broadcasting Qognify Extend, which is the company’s rebranding of a system “powered by CloudScann,” captures the data from human sensors and allows it to be brought into the Qognify platform. Because smart phones are equipped with high-resolution megapixel cameras, Extend also enables the addition of 20,000 video cameras (and audio), all tied into a command centre. The app can also provide protection for students or employees with the GuardMe function “It would take years and millions of dollars to [add that many cameras] any other way,” says Patel. “And the information is coming from your employees, which is a trusted source. Actionable information becomes part of the workflow.” In case of an emergency, a smart phone can be used to stream live video to a command centre, a capability called Live Video Broadcasting, even as a control room operator dispatches an officer to help. Qognify visual intelligence desktop application Information from Extend mobile apps reports to the Qognify Visual Intelligence Command Center (VICC), a cloud-based desktop application that collects and aggregates information and presents it on a map to enable control room operators to have complete situational awareness. The live, global system compiles data from open source systems anywhere in the world. If you type in New York City, for example, the interface takes you to a live map that shows where live cameras are viewing the Lincoln Tunnel. Various “levels” of information provide real-time routing and traffic, weather information, etc. In addition to information from mobile apps, the system can bring in views from any public source cameras, including tapping into cameras mounted on drones hovering over the scene of an emergency. Fast response to incidents Finding information on any incident using VICC is like conducting a Google search. The system can also find the locations of people (employees or students) based on their smart phone signals. Availability of real-time video from a trusted source in an emergency helps to shift the mission of a video system from reactive after the fact to a real-time response, says Patel. And the cameras providing the video are not mounted on the ceiling but are closer to the action (held by a person on the scene). Because smart phones provide location data, the command centre knows the location of an incident and can trigger a response. “I know where it is, I can say ‘who’s my closest responder?’” says Patel. “We can see this whole situation in the command centre – not just visualise it but dispatch a response.”
Another week, another school shooting. Or so it seems recently with all the incidents in the U.S. news media. Just this week there was another one in Troutdale, Ore. In fact, the organisation Everytown for Gun Safety says there have been roughly 74 school shootings since the well-remembered tragedy in Newtown, Conn., about 18 months ago. Counting just the weeks school has been in session since then, the number is more than a shooting a week. The organization lists the shootings on their web site (everytown.org/article/schoolshootings/) The list includes incidents when a firearm was discharged inside a school building or on school or campus grounds, as documented in publicly reported news accounts. This includes assaults, homicides, suicides, and accidental shootings. Because the list is based on news reports, the organisation contends the number is likely an undercount. In scanning down the list, I notice several incidents near my office in Atlanta. I can barely recall hearing about them in the local media, let alone any national news coverage. Sadly, it’s like we have grown so used to hearing these stories that we are losing the ability to be shocked by them. How sad it that? Meanwhile, the ongoing likelihood of school violence is directing much of the security activities at our educational facilities, and many school children are haunted by the fear of a possible incident when they should be more concerned with less scary and more age-appropriate problems. We can all be proud of the role our industry plays in curbing school violence just as we continue to help our education customers keep the issue top of mind. The shock value may be declining, but our commitment to prevention and rapid response get more important with every passing week, the numbers climbing like an urgent drumbeat.
The University of Birmingham educates over 30,000 students, with more than 6,000 doors providing access to student accommodation. Gallagher’s integrated access control solution is responsible for providing operational continuity and creating a safe and secure environment for students. Access management system The University recently completed its new state-of-the-art student accommodation development, Chamberlain, which consists of a 19-storey tower and three low-rise blocks. An essential requirement was an integrated access control system, reducing the need for keys. Timothy Owen, General Manager of Student Accommodation at the University says, “We wanted to move away from using keys as students are prone to losing them and trying to manage thousands of locks and associated keys was a constant administration and financial drain.” We need to maintain control over access to our buildings, while ensuring a duty of care to our residents and staff" In order to minimise the complexity of managing a new system, the University required a solution that integrated with, or was an extension of, their existing campus access control and accommodation management systems. “We need to maintain control over access to our buildings, while ensuring a duty of care to our residents and staff so that they can go about their business as required,” says Timothy. “Fundamentally, we needed a system that gives both us and our resident’s confidence in the security of the accommodation.” Adaptable access solutions A large and complex estate with buildings of different construction and age, the University needed a solution that was flexible enough to accommodate their unique requirements. Gallagher Command Centre, together with the Aperio® wireless locking technology by ASSA ABLOY Access Control, was selected as the University’s preferred choice, meeting their security needs in a cost-effective way while still delivering to the overall specification. Timothy says, “The completion of our new state of the art Chamberlain development was extremely close to the date of the first student arrival, so the team had to be dedicated and work flexibly to ensure it was ready in time – which it was.” Improved student experience The Gallagher Command Centre integration allows for the access key and student ID to be combined in to one card, offering a number of benefits to both students and staff. The student ID and accommodation key is encoded on to one card, so it can be posted out in advance and access to the room automatically granted" Previously the accommodation arrival process required students to arrive at the University with their contracts and queue up so that a member of staff could sign them in manually and hand them the keys to their accommodation. From there students could head to their room. “Arrivals is always a busy time but with the help of the Gallagher solution we’ve not only improved the student experience but also the administration process,” says Timothy. “Now the student ID and accommodation key is encoded on to one card, so it can be posted out in advance and access to the room automatically granted via the accommodation management system. Students no longer need to queue for keys, can get to their rooms instantly, and spend more time enjoying their arrival experience.” Monitoring access cards The simple act of swiping an access card automatically checks the student in and a report can be generated to show who has arrived and who hasn’t, allowing staff to follow up accordingly. If the room is no longer required it can be quickly and easily re-allocated to another student, resulting in improved occupancy rates. Using Gallagher Command Centre together with the University’s accommodation management system allows staff to check on the well-being of students by monitoring the use of their access card. The University also houses students under the age of 18, and one of the safeguarding requirements is that the University can monitor their whereabouts on a daily basis. Timothy adds, “This can be difficult to achieve with many students to track, but Gallagher Command Centre can easily confirm the time and location of our resident’s last door access, providing peace of mind that students who may be uncontactable are in fact on site.” Replacing keys with a combined access and student ID card has reduced our operational costs" Creating business value University staff are also seeing positive improvements since the installation of the new system – particularly at the start of the year. The arrivals process is now less congested and more relaxed. The team have far fewer issues than with physical keys, enabling them to spend more time on the overall student experience. Since the installation of the first 800 bedrooms at Chamberlain, the University has already extended the system by a further 900 at Mason, with plans in place for an additional 1500 bedrooms this summer. Enduring partnerships “Replacing keys with a combined access and student ID card has reduced our operational costs as we now have far fewer keys to purchase and store,” explains Timothy. “The student experience has improved, and staff are now free to deal with urgent matters and offer a more personal service. We can easily create reports to help us audit access and have generally provided a much more modern and secure place to live and work.” “The University has worked with 2020 Vision Systems for some time on CCTV and access control systems, so when they won the tender to provide and install the Gallagher and Aperio® systems we had every confidence that they would be able to deliver. The completion of our new state of the art Chamberlain development was extremely close to the date of the first student occupation and so the team had to be dedicated and work flexibly to ensure it was ready in time – which it was.”
Princeton Identity Inc., provider of the fastest, simplest and most secure biometric security systems on the market, announced that Alabama’s Auburn University has updated and expanded the biometric identity system it uses to secure areas within its athletic facilities. Princeton Identity’s new IDS software and Access200 iris readers allow student athletes, coaches and other affiliated team members enrolled in the system to unlock the doors to team locker rooms by glancing at small reader panels mounted outside each entrance. As athletes and coaches rarely carry personal items with them onto the field, the Princeton Identity system eliminates the need for access control cards, fobs, or PIN codes, which can be difficult to manually enter when carrying equipment. It also increases security. Biometric credentials make it impossible for students to share cards or codes with others, while the system’s convenience factor reduces the desire for students to leave doors propped open for easier access. Integration with OnGuard access control system The new IDS software is browser based, providing greater flexibility to school administrators responsible for enrolling students and managing the systemThe new IDS software is browser based, providing greater flexibility to school administrators responsible for enrolling students and managing the system. The system’s Access200e enrolment camera is a stand-alone unit that can be plugged into any network jack without need for special software or drivers, allowing enrolment to occur from any web-enabled device, including tablets and laptops. Permissions are handled through an integration with the University’s Lenel OnGuard access control system. When students leave a team or graduate, their permissions are turned off. However, as iris signatures remain stable over time, if students or staff return to the program – even years later – there is no need for re-enrolment. Their permissions are simply reactivated. System configuration, management and monitoring of the IDS system is handled through a web-based dashboard that provides Auburn’s IT staff with access to all devices, which are spread across multiple buildings on campus. Faster processing and superior software interface The new platform offers faster processing, a superior software interface, more features and greater flexibilityThe installation of new Princeton Identity hardware and software are an upgrade to the University’s legacy Princeton Identity system, which was installed in 2011. Since that time, the system has required almost no maintenance. The new platform offers faster processing, a superior software interface, more features and greater flexibility. Older readers will still be supported, allowing the University to preserve the value of earlier investments. Jeff Steele, Associate Director of Facilities and Operations, says “Reaction to the PI system has been overwhelmingly positive. When we give campus tours to prospective students and their parents, the moms and dads are most impressed with it – especially if they are parents of a female student-athlete. They can see that it’s a much stronger system than key or card access.” Jeff Kohler, Business Development Director at Princeton Identity, says “We are honoured to have Auburn University as a long-term partner and customer. Their adoption of Princeton Identity’s technology demonstrates a team committed to offering both security and convenience to its student-athletes and staff members.”
Texas A&M University-San Antonio (A&M-SA) has become the first university in the world to deploy an Indoor Positioning Solution across its entire campus for the purpose of providing the safest possible environment. The SafeZone indoor positioning solution, provided by CriticalArc, provides the campus police with an unprecedented three-dimensional view of multi-story buildings. For example, instead of receiving an alert about ‘an incident somewhere in the student union building’, they get pinpoint specifics, such as ‘it’s on the fourth floor, west wing, outside room 410’. "With indoor positioning and SafeZone, we're able to provide a faster response time, whether it's a medical emergency or an active shooter,” says Roger Stearns, A&M-SA’s assistant chief of Police, featured in this video. The entire police department benefits from advanced features such as heat mapping and incident playback to optimise performance" Safer environment for students The university’s Chief of Police Ron Davidson wanted to innovate with this full-coverage system because the campus was expanding, including a newly completed residence hall, which meant having students around the clock for the first time in A&M-SA’s history. He was committed to ensuring a safer environment for students, staff and visitors. In addition, Chief Davidson was in search of a common operating view that would provide the Emergency Operations Center and all officers on patrol a real-time location of all available officers and volunteers, as well as showing the location of all incidents ̶ essential for coordinating first responders and the Campus Community Emergency Response Team (CCERT). Heat mapping and incident playback “SafeZone is essential technology to position your organisation on the cutting edge of campus law enforcement. The real-time common operating view both enhances officer safety and acts a force multiplier. Plus, the entire police department benefits from advanced features such as heat mapping and incident playback to optimise performance,” Davidson said. Texas A&M-San Antonio has adopted the indoor positioning solution as a standard and will deploy it in all future buildings on campus. The solution is fully supported by the University’s Information Technology department and has been assessed for additional applications to enhance the student experience including wayfinding and research by academics in the newly completed Science and Technology building. Easy to maintain wireless installation The process to get the SafeZone indoor positioning solution deployed is a simple one, as it’s a wireless installation and easy to maintain"SafeZone was easy to deliver with no disruption to the campus. It was deployed in a matter of weeks during the summer break. “The process to get the SafeZone indoor positioning solution deployed is a simple one, as it’s a wireless installation and easy to maintain,” added Stearns. Organisations can install wireless, wearable duress alarms able to pinpoint anyone anywhere on campus as an alternative to fixed, expensive, wired panic alarms. Among other capabilities, SafeZone allows users to get the most rapid help simply by activating an alert, using an app or a wearable duress alarm. As soon as the alert is triggered, the location and details of the user are streamed to the monitoring team, allowing officers to coordinate a smarter, more targeted response. By enabling responders to visualise the precise location of an incident, anywhere on campus, SafeZone is much more powerful than traditional, fixed panic alarms and blue light telephones, which are more expensive to install and less accurate in operation. SafeZone public safety solution Glenn Farrant, Chief Executive Officer, CriticalArc, notes; “I’m delighted by the close partnership between A&M-SA and CriticalArc resulting in this ground-breaking implementation of the SafeZone public safety solution. Chief Davidson and his team are at the forefront of using this technology and we are pleased to be helping them improve the quality of life, and the learning experience, for everyone on their campus.” The SafeZone indoor positioning solution is commercially available worldwide for a range of university, hospital, enterprise and finance applications and is being deployed in more than 80 countries worldwide.
A two-year programme to transform security at Heriot-Watt University campuses around the world, facilitated by CriticalArc’s SafeZone technology, has been recognised with one of the UK’s top security industry awards. The innovative partnership between Heriot-Watt and CriticalArc has been named as ‘Security Project of the Year’ in the 2018 Security & Fire Excellence Awards run in association with IFSEC International and Firex International. The award, sponsored by the British Security Industry Association, is highly competitive and a major accolade for the winners. Improving service response Two years ago, Les Allan, Heriot-Watt’s Director of Safety and Security Services and his team at the university embarked on a strategy to transform all aspects of their operations. They wanted to modernise their service across five campuses, in the UK, Dubai, and Malaysia to provide much greater care for students and staff. A key factor in the team’s success has been the way it uses CriticalArc’s SafeZone technology across all five international campuses It was an ambitious undertaking, but it has already delivered impressive results, measurably improving service response times by over fifty percent, upgrading security department capabilities and skills and raising the job status and remuneration for officers involved. A key factor in the team’s success has been the way it uses CriticalArc’s SafeZone technology across all five international campuses, making Heriot-Watt the first university department to take this global approach. Real-time incident management SafeZone technology has transformed the way officers interact with students and staff wherever they are - on campus or and when travelling off-site – so they can provide assistance in case of emergencies or other incidents. Les Allan’s team has already responded to serious medical emergencies using the system and now they have the tools to manage a full range of live-incident risks. “SafeZone lets my team communicate quickly with individuals and groups,” explains Les Allan, Heriot-Watt, Director of Safety and Security Services. “Using it they can receive alerts and pinpoint the location of anyone needing assistance. They can deploy officers more quickly and keep track of ongoing situations as they develop. It’s really letting them do things they couldn’t have dreamed of before.” Better support for students & staff The Heriot-Watt team is also using new technology to support staff and students on campus while travelling and during fieldwork. They can ‘geo-fence’ additional areas as required. Between 1 August 2017 and 31 July 2018, a total of 5398 security incidents were attended at the Edinburgh Campus The result has been a significant improvement in engagement between the security department – now restyled as Safeguarding Services – students and staff. Between 1 August 2017 and 31 July 2018, a total of 5398 security incidents were attended at the Edinburgh Campus (the first to adopt SafeZone); 3542 of these incidents (66%) involved assisting or interacting with students (rising from 33% in 2013). Efficient, responsive and capable services The results have been impressive but Les Allan, who is currently also serving as Chair of the Association of University Chief Security Officers (AUCSO) in Scotland, says his ambition is to go much further. “We are delighted at our incredible success at the Security and Fire Excellence Awards as winners of the Security Project of the Year category. This joint award for Heriot-Watt University and our friends at CritcalArc is a testimony to the power of working in partnership for mutual benefit and delivery of excellence with a world-leading solution. We are committed to continuing development and enhancement of our partnership with CriticalArc.” Darren Chalmers-Stevens, CriticalArc, Managing Director, EMEA and APAC, noted: “I’m delighted that the forward-looking partnership between Heriot-Watt University and CriticalArc has been so clearly successful. This major award is further proof of how we work closely with all our customers and are leading the way in providing better protection and enabling more efficient, responsive and capable services.”
Students of all ages in state schools are entitled to a safe learning environment. If students don't feel safe, they are not able to stay focused during classroom lessons and activities. That’s why Narre Warren South. P-12 College has upgraded its security with the installation of a sophisticated SALTO access control and ID pass system. Located south east of Melbourne, Australia, Narre Warren South P-12 College is a unique school on one campus with two sub schools, Primary, (Prep to Year 6) and Secondary, (Years 7 to 12). It follows the P-12 Curriculum which is designed to provide diversity and pathway opportunities, ensuring students maximise opportunities that exist after school and ensure people achieve their learning goals in a fun and supportive learning environment. Mechanical key system The College previously used a mechanical key system for its security needs Home to over 2000 students and 200 staff, cultural diversity is a feature of the College with at least 50 ethnic groups being represented speaking 68 languages. A third of the College’s student population come from families where the language background is other than English. The College previously used a mechanical key system for its security needs; however this was increasingly complicated to manage as keys multiplied, and it was difficult to guard against key duplication and copying. Another negative was the cost of re-keying and replacing locks to maintain security if keys were lost or not handed back. Security arrangements The College also had a number of challenges when it came to managing and limiting traffic flow through the staff car parks, both inside and outside school hours. To alleviate such problems, the College decided to look into upgrading its security arrangements and called in local security specialists Eclipse Security Systems. Director Greg Flood takes up the story. “We met with Brett Dyer, (the College’s Property and Maintenance Manager), and explained how SALTO solutions are in use around the world in educational environments including universities, university housing, schools, research institutes, academies, kindergartens and more where they provide security, access control and campus management.” Cost-effective package Brett liked the fact that SALTO could offer a solution that was education proven" “Replacing keys with smart access control would give the school much more control over its security. For instance installing smart online wireless locks on main entrance doors would enable the school to incorporate these doors into its lock down procedure. At busy student drop off and pick up times in the morning and afternoon, the school gates could be automated to improve traffic flow and ease congestion.” “And since Narre Warren South P-12 like almost all state schools hire out their sports, meeting facilities etc to third party groups outside of school hours, the new access control solution would make it much easier to manage access for such short term visitors. Brett liked the fact that SALTO could offer a solution that was education proven and offered a secure, flexible way to have all the above benefits and more in a versatile, cost-effective package that was future proof and gave a great return on the schools investment dollars.” Scheduled automatic locking Most external doors have a mix of offline and online SALTO XS4 escutcheons" “The removal of the old system and the upgrade to smart locks was smooth and straightforward, and we’ve now retro-fitted in excess of 100 doors and automated a number of perimeter gates. Most external doors, plus the addition of a number of internal office doors across all the blocks, have a mix of offline and online SALTO XS4 escutcheons, as well as control units and wall readers.” “The most important thing for us is to ensure that we are doing everything we can to safeguard our children. Our new access control system furthers this goal” says Brett Dyer. “We went with Greg’s recommendation of SALTO for its functionality and value for money. We particularly like how easy it is to use and program, especially the issue and management of contactless smartcards for external user groups." "The scheduled automatic locking and unlocking of external doors and gates is a huge time saver, and so far we’re pleased with the product and the capabilities it now gives us.”
Ask a student, or pretty much anyone, what they think about “access control” and you’ll get a shrug. Conversely, all of us are enthusiastic about security and convenience. Students across Europe are discovering SMARTair wireless access control gives them both. Adding SMARTair access control to a door involves just replacing a standard cylinder or escutcheon with a digital, smartphone- or smart-card–operated electronic lock. It’s hassle-free to make the switch to SMARTair. And with a system design focused on user experience, SMARTair takes some of the everyday pain out of student life. Wherever you fit SMARTair, it’s easy to configure access cards to enable payments in the canteen or at vending machines; for changing room locker locks; and for the photocopier or library loans. You can’t do that with a metal key. MIFARE RFID cards At Madrid’s prestigious Colegio Universitario de Estudios Financieros (CUNEF) students now open doors with smart MIFARE RFID cards instead of keys At Madrid’s prestigious Colegio Universitario de Estudios Financieros (CUNEF) students now open doors with smart MIFARE RFID cards instead of keys. CUNEF fitted escutcheons to monitor and ease access to different areas of the university for 1,600 students, without the need for expensive wired door locks. If a student loses their card, there’s no threat to campus security. A manager issues a new credential which automatically cancels the lost card — much faster than changing a lock. When Mezzino took ownership of Rialto Court — apartments for students attending Durham University and Teesside University — they replaced a mechanical master key system with SMARTair. From the company’s point of view, the high annual tenant turnover and a need for scheduled cleaning and summer shutdown were becoming difficult to manage with physical keys. Students also reaped the benefits of their new, user-friendly access system. They have the confidence no previous resident of their flat has copied a physical key. At Funway Academic Resort in Madrid, student rooms are also locked with SMARTair escutcheons. Energy-saving wall devices inside rooms regulate electricity use, and students each have their own safe locked with a SMARTair cabinet lock. The Funway gym, study rooms, games rooms, swimming pool and changing rooms, spa and staff areas are also locked with SMARTair escutcheons — and open with the same smart-card. SMARTair Openow solution The recent launch of the SMARTair Openow solution puts credentials on a mobile phoneThere’s more to come from SMARTair. The recent launch of the SMARTair Openow solution puts credentials on a mobile phone. With SMARTair and the Openow app, students can open their rooms and authorised doors with a smartphone. If you have your phone, you’re already carrying your keys. Student services or facilities managers issue virtual keys over-the-air — and can revoke them whenever they choose — so there’s no need for a key-card handover meeting, at the beginning or end of term. A time-limited virtual key arrives ahead of the first day and automatically expires when it’s time to vacate your halls. Mobile credentials Mobile credentials will be a big hit. Student life goes on inside the handset, as much as IRL (“In Real Life”, for the uninitiated). Last year’s Deloitte Mobile Consumer Survey found a fifth of 18- to 24-year-olds even check their phone for messages in the middle of the night*. From a security standpoint, phone-based credentials have another advantage. Checking our phones is “habitual”, “unconscious” and “repetitive”, according to one study**. We know very quickly if it is missing. How soon would you notice a missing plastic card, especially if you were enjoying yourself on a night out? Biometric security Plus, a virtual key on every student’s smartphone potentially provides an extra layer of biometric protection for every controlled university door Plus, a virtual key on every student’s smartphone potentially provides an extra layer of biometric protection for every controlled university door. Fingerprint, and even face and iris, scanners are commonplace on smartphones. ”Generation Z students were raised as digital natives,” says Felix Moran, SMARTair Product Manager at ASSA ABLOY. ”They expect convenience as a standard feature, not a mechanical solution used in Ancient Egypt. In Europe’s increasingly international, marketized higher education ecosystem, attracting these tech-savvy students is critical, as is keeping them satisfied with the campus experience.” SMARTair TS1000 software The complete SMARTair solution includes wireless escutcheons, cylinders, wall readers, locker locks and more; the intuitive SMARTair TS1000 software; and the enhanced new Openow app functionality. It works out the box and is easy to install — and even easier to operate.