The sensor solutions provider, HENSOLDT supports the association Lachen helfen e.V., a private initiative of German soldiers to help children in war and crisis areas. HENSOLDT’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Thomas Muller handed over a symbolic cheque for a donation of 8,000 Euros to the Chairman of Lachen helfen e.V., Lieutenant Colonel (ret.) Roderich Thien. Since 2018, HENSOLDT has been a supporting member of Lachen helfen e.V. with an annual donation of 10,000 Euros. Under the patronage of the German Defence Minister, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, soldiers and police officers provide humanitarian aid in the country of deployment. Wherever German soldiers and police officers are deployed, Lachen Helfen e.V. supports children in need. HENSOLDT sponsorship membership Lachen helfen e.V. focuses on the construction of schools, orphanages and hospitals in the area of operation “As a pioneer of technologies and innovations in the field of defence and security electronics, we see it as our duty to support our troops in the areas of deployment,” said Thomas Muller, adding “Through our sponsoring membership with Lachen helfen e.V., we create better future prospects for children in need in crisis areas.” Lachen helfen e.V. focuses on the construction of schools, orphanages and hospitals in the respective area of operation. Planning, implementation and completion are closely accompanied by German soldiers and police officers. Fast, flexible and un-bureaucratic aid Currently, the focus is on Mali, South Sudan, Somalia, Afghanistan and the Balkans. In Afghanistan, for example, a school could be reopened in Kabul in 2020 that had been destroyed by bombings in 2017, with the support of Lachen helfen e.V. Soldiers and police officers determine the projects and the need for aid on site themselves, in close coordination with the Operations Command. In this way, fast, flexible and un-bureaucratic aid can be ensured in cooperation with the soldiers, in the area of operations. Goal of pioneering technologies and human potential HENSOLDT takes its responsibility, as part of civil society and a sustainable company, very seriously. The company has set itself the goal of pioneering technologies and human potential that promote the protection of all species worldwide. At the same time, the company’s activities serve the higher purpose of securing the freedom and future of the planet, the nature and everyone’s lives. Social commitment is one of HENSOLDT's core ethical priorities.
CARRIDA Technologies, a globally renowned provider of ALPR software solutions, has appointed Pedro Bento as Chief Sales Officer (CSO) to lead the International Sales and Business Development. The company also launched a new website to showcase its state-ofthe-art ALPR software engine and solutions, as well as ALPR Edge Devices. CARRIDA ALPR engine Special to CARRIDA Technologies is the unmatched CARRIDA ALPR engine that can be flexibly deployed as OEM library, web-GUI solution for easy startup and configuration of edge devices, or with the CARRIDA App for any Android device. On top of that, the company offers validated platforms and matching components that enable easy, quick, and cost-effective development of individual ALPR applications. Pedro Bento joined CARRIDA as Chief Sales Officer (CSO). In his new role, he will lead the international sales and business development of the ALPR software provider and strengthen its growth in applications, such as access control, fleet management and parking, safety and law enforcement, as well as traffic management, smart city and tolling projects. In-depth experience in the Mobility Industry CARRIDA offers the most advanced ALPR software with latest technologies, such as AI and Deep Learning" Pedro Bento has in-depth experience in the Mobility Industry and has held several Management level positions previously, e.g. in Verra Mobility as Vice President Europe, A-to-Be (part of Brisa Group) as Chief Sales Officer and Q-Free as Vice President for Europe and Latin America. Pedro Bento stated on his appointment, “CARRIDA offers the most advanced ALPR software with latest technologies, such as AI and Deep Learning. A lot of applications ranging from traffic management to smart cities can benefit from our solutions. I’m looking forward to supporting many projects to get the most out of the CARRIDA offerings and to take the lead in their markets with our developments.” New website for solutions portfolio Along with Pedro Bento’s introduction, CARRIDA Technologies also launched its new website. It shows the extensive CARRIDA software solutions portfolio, ranging from a powerful OEM library for ALPR and make/model recognition, to CARRIDA Edge, a web-GUI solution for easy startup and configuration of edge devices, and the CARRIDA App for Android devices. Beyond software, it also shows the CARRIDA validated platforms and components that enable developers to setup their own ALPR devices faster and easier as ever before.
Global MSC Security has announced that the new Commissioner for the Retention and Use of Biometric Material and Surveillance Camera, Professor Fraser Sampson, will address delegates at the Global MSC Security Conference and Exhibition 2021. He will be joined by speakers, including Philip Ingram MBE and Professor Martin Innes, to discuss the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the surveillance industry. The conference takes place on Tuesday 19th October 2021, at The Bristol Hotel, in Bristol, United Kingdom. Use of AI in the surveillance industry Professor Martin Innes is currently serving as the Director of Crime and Security Research Institute, at Cardiff University and also as Director of the Universities Police Science Institute. He will present the session, ‘The technology of facial recognition and the ethics which underpin it’, at the Global MSC Security Conference and Exhibition 2021. Professor Innes from Cardiff University commented, “Facial recognition technologies have emerged as a particularly controversial technology among the growing armoury of digital policing tools. Supporters point to clear benefits in helping police identify wanted suspects. Opponents worry about the step change in surveillance capacity and capability such technologies portend.” Facial recognition biometrics in policing Philip Ingram will consider how video analytics, such as facial recognition technology could aid an investigation Informed by data from the world’s first independent evaluation of how facial recognition biometrics can be used to support street policing, Professor Innes will explore how the technology is being deployed by police and what results they can and cannot deliver. Philip Ingram MBE from Grey Hare Media and a former Colonel with the British Military Intelligence will discuss the challenges of seizing large quantities of surveillance camera footage, during a major incident (such as the Salisbury Novichok poisoning case). Philip Ingram will consider how video analytics, such as facial recognition technology could aid an investigation. Counter terrorism threat update Louise Stapleton, Counter Terrorism Security Advisor at Avon & Somerset Police will provide ‘A counter terrorism threat update’, concentrating on the current threat faced in the United Kingdom from terrorism, threat actors, methodologies, and hostile reconnaissance. The presentation will include an overview of the ‘See, Check and Notify’ workshop, developed by the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure. Providing a perspective from inside the control room will be Chris Harrison, the CCTV Manager at North Somerset Council. He will share his CCTV system upgrade journey from concept to completion, including justifying the works financially and efficiency. Global MSC Security Conference and Exhibition 2021 Derek Maltby, Managing Director of Global MSC Security, said “We are honoured to have such a high calibre of speaker presenting at The Global MSC Security Conference and Exhibition this year. AI can be polarising, misunderstood and sensationalised. This event will separate fact from fiction, to understand where we are today, what is possible and what checks and balances need to be in place, for it to be used ethically and effectively.” The Global MSC Security Conference and Exhibition is slated to take place from October 18 to October 19, 2021, at The Bristol Hotel, located in Bristol City Centre, United Kingdom.
SMARTSHOOTER, a globally renowned designer, developer, and manufacturer of innovative fire control systems that significantly increase the accuracy and lethality of small arms, will present its SMASH 2000 Plus Fire Control System and SMASH Hopper Light Remote-Controlled Weapon Station (LRCWS) at the DEFEA exhibition in Athens, Greece. Ideal for defence, HLS, maritime patrol, border control, strategic infrastructure protection, and counter-UAS missions, SMASH is a combat-proven Fire Control solution that ensures each round finds its target. SMASH technology SMARTSHOOTER's SMASH technology enhances mission effectiveness through the ability to accurately engage and eliminate ground, aerial, static, or moving targets, during both day and night operations, at land and sea. It is a cost-effective solution that can be integrated onto any type of assault rifle, in order to increase force lethality, while keeping friendly forces safe and reducing collateral damage. SMASH 2000 Plus fire control solution SMASH 2000 Plus includes the SMASH fire control solution's full feature set, with an additional advanced Counter-UAS mode that provides accurate Hard Kill capability against drones or any static or moving ground targets. Designed to give soldiers and law enforcement professionals a decisive tactical edge in almost every operational scenario, SMASH 2000 Plus is suitable for defence and armed forces, HLS, border security, strategic facilities protection, police, and paramilitary uses. SMASH Hopper LRCWS SMASH Hopper is a modular and rapidly deployable Light Remote-Controlled Weapon Station SMASH Hopper is a modular and rapidly deployable Light Remote-Controlled Weapon Station (LRCWS) that provides ‘One Shot – One Hit’ capability, while controlled by an operator from a safe distance. Weighing approximately 15 kg, SMASH Hopper is ideal for deployment on various lightweight manned and unmanned vehicles and platforms, with a wide range of applications. Offering day and night capability with automatic scanning and target detection, SMASH Hopper is ideal for multiple mission scenarios, including force protection, border security, anti-drone missions, remote ambush, and other low-profile operations, in complex urban environments. Advanced electro-optical processing capabilities Michal Mor, SMARTSHOOTER’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), said “Bringing precision-missile targeting algorithms and advanced electro-optical processing capabilities into standard infantry, Smart Shooter's SMASH technology is a cost-effective solution for defence, border control, strategic infrastructure protection and counter-UAS uses, at land and sea.” Michal Mor adds, “The SMASH solutions are fielded and in operational use by friendly forces around the world, including the IDF and the US Special Forces, and more than 10 other countries are currently in different stages of evaluating the technology.”
The UK government recently announced a doubling of the Safer Streets Fund to £45 million, as it seeks to reassure the public that safety is a top priority, as the night-time economy makes a return. More than just surveillance While this funding increase is much needed, it’s vital that the government and local councils use the money strategically, or risk missing out on a great opportunity to deliver real change and enhance safety across the United Kingdom. One of the main strategies cited by the government is to increase the current vast number of CCTV cameras installed across the country, despite the fact that the UK is already one of the most surveilled nations in the world. Investing in video analytics London alone has around 700,000 cameras, but to effectively monitor them all would be an incredibly inefficient use of manpower and require a huge number of staff. Therefore, I believe the clearest and most cost-effective way for this project to succeed in its overall mission, is by investing in smarter technology, such as video analytics. Incorporating video analytics into existing infrastructure is the clear solution This technology offers a more efficient use of resources, faster response times and enables more informed, time-critical decision making, when reacting to unfolding events in real time. Incorporating video analytics into existing infrastructure is the clear solution, as the technology enables legacy assets, such as analogue CCTV cameras, to become more than just after the fact evidence gathering tools and instead be used to help enhance real-time responses to unfolding incidents. Artificial intelligence-enabled solutions Artificial intelligence-enabled solutions are trained using vast datasets of images and video footage, in order to better understand people, objects and vehicles that are captured on film, and they continue ‘learning’ and improving, while in use. The system’s algorithms analyse and prioritise input from video data to decide which inputs are of value, automatically classifying the footage and notifying security personnel accordingly. This reduces response times by notifying CCTV operators of an incident, as it happens, meaning law enforcement and security personnel can react faster and intervene in an ongoing situation. Edge technology and real-time video streaming A key consideration should be choosing a technology that can operate at the edge and deliver real-time video streaming, even at the lowest bandwidths, so it isn’t limited to use in areas with good connectivity, which would exclude most remote areas. Quality really does matter and technology that can operate over low bandwidths is crucial for allowing operators to zoom in on areas of interest, such as a car number plate or face, and retrieve full-resolution images that can make a real difference in ongoing investigations. Analytics-based security approach Introducing an analytics-based security approach would also help curtail the rising cost of tackling crime Introducing an analytics-based security approach would also help curtail the rising cost of tackling crime. Research conducted by the UK’s Labour Party recently found that the annual cost of crime reached a staggering £100 billion. While statistics show that crime rates in general have been fairly stable over recent years, experts point to the increase in specific types of violent crime, such as knife crime which rose by over 20% during 2020. Implementing smart analytics-based technology Implementing smart analytics-based technology would help maintain staffing costs, as the system can identify incidents without an operator’s input, as well as reducing the cost of managing crime, as more incidents will be intervened in before they escalate too far. This dramatically reduces the burden on staff and allows a single surveillance operator to monitor many more cameras. On the other hand, this level of automation also reduces false alarm fatigue and operator overload, which can quickly sap efficiencies and reduce operator alertness, if left unchecked. Data driven problem-solving approach to crime prevention Procurement officials should avoid the common mistake of simply doubling down and throwing more staff and security assets at the problem to bring results. Instead, they should take a more data driven problem-solving approach to crime prevention by leveraging technologies that can enhance response and preserve their existing investments in cameras. The smart use of real-time video analytics could make the difference by preventing dangerous situations from escalating into serious incidents.
While the application of facial recognition within both public and private spheres continues to draw criticism from those who see it as a threat to civil rights, this technology has become extremely commonplace in the lives of iPhone users. It is so prevalent, in fact, that by 2024 it is predicted that 90% of smartphones will use biometric facial recognition hardware. CCTV surveillance cameras Similarly, CCTV is a well-established security measure that many of us are familiar with, whether through spotting images displayed on screens in shops, hotels and offices, or noticing cameras on the side of buildings. It is therefore necessary we ask the question of why, when facial recognition is integrated with security surveillance technology, does it become such a source of contention? It is not uncommon for concerns to be voiced against innovation. History has taught us that it is human nature to fear the unknown, especially if it seems that it may change life as we know it. Yet technology is an ever-changing, progressive part of the 21st century and it is important we start to shift the narrative away from privacy threats, to the force for good that LFR (Live Facial Recognition) represents. Live Facial Recognition (LFR) We understand the arguments from those that fear the ethics of AI and the data collection within facial recognition Across recent weeks, we have seen pleas from UK organisations to allow better police access to facial recognition technology in order to fight crime. In the US, there are reports that LAPD is the latest police force to be properly regulating its use of facial recognition to aid criminal investigations, which is certainly a step in the right direction. While it is understandable that society fears technology that they do not yet understand, this lack of knowledge is exactly why the narrative needs to shift. We understand the arguments from those that fear the ethics of AI and the data collection within facial recognition, we respect these anxieties. However, it is time to level the playing field of the facial recognition debate and communicate the plethora of benefits it offers society. Facial recognition technology - A force for good Facial recognition technology has already reached such a level of maturity and sophistication that there are huge opportunities for it to be leveraged as a force for good in real-world scenarios. As well as making society safer and more secure, I would go as far to say that LFR is able to save lives. One usage that could have a dramatic effect on reducing stress in people with mental conditions is the ability for facial recognition to identify those with Alzheimer’s. If an older individual is seemingly confused, lost or distressed, cameras could alert local medical centres or police stations of their identity, condition and where they need to go (a home address or a next of kin contact). Granted, this usage would be one that does incorporate a fair bit of personal data, although this information would only be gathered with consent from each individual. Vulnerable people could volunteer their personal data to local watchlists in order to ensure their safety when out in society, as well as to allow quicker resolutions of typically stressful situations. Tracking and finding missing persons Another possibility for real world positives to be drawn from facial recognition is to leverage the technology to help track or find missing persons, a lost child for instance. The most advanced forms of LFR in the market are now able to recognise individuals even if up to 50% of their face is covered and from challenging or oblique angles. Therefore, there is a significant opportunity not only to return people home safely, more quickly, but also reduce police hours spent on analysing CCTV footage. Rapid scanning of images Facial recognition technology can rapidly scan images for a potential match Facial recognition technology can rapidly scan images for a potential match, as a more reliable and less time-consuming option than the human alternative. Freed-up officers could also then work more proactively on the ground, patrolling their local areas and increasing community safety and security twofold. It is important to understand that these facial recognition solutions should not be applied to every criminal case, and the technology must be used responsibly. However, these opportunities to use LFR as force for good are undeniable. Debunking the myths One of the central concerns around LFR is the breach of privacy that is associated with ‘watchlists’. There is a common misconception, however, that the data of every individual that passes a camera is processed and then stored. The reality is that watch lists are compiled with focus on known criminals, while the general public can continue life as normal. The very best facial recognition will effectively view a stream of blurred faces, until it detects one that it has been programmed to recognise. For example, an individual that has previously shoplifted from a local supermarket may have their biometric data stored, so when they return to that location the employees are alerted to a risk of further crimes being committed. Considering that the cost of crime prevention to retailers in recent years has been around £1 billion, which therefore impacts consumer prices and employee wages, security measures to tackle this issue are very much in the public interest. Most importantly, the average citizen has no need to fear being ‘followed’ by LFR cameras. If data is stored, it is for a maximum of 0.6 seconds before being deleted. Privacy Privacy is ingrained in facial recognition solutions, yet it seems the debate often ignores this side of the story Privacy is ingrained in facial recognition solutions, yet it seems the debate often ignores this side of the story. It is essential we spend more time and effort communicating exactly why watchlists are made, who they are made for and how they are being used, if we want to de-bunk myths and change the narrative. As science and technology professionals, heading up this exciting innovation, we must put transparency and accountability at the centre of what we do. Tony Porter, former Surveillance Camera Commissioner and current CPO at Corsight AI, has previously worked on developing processes that audit and review watch lists. Such restrictions are imperative in order for AI and LFR to be used legally, as well as ethically and responsibly. Biometrics, mask detection and contactless payments Nevertheless, the risks do not outweigh the benefits. Facial recognition should and can be used for good in so many more ways than listed above, including biometric, contactless payments, detecting whether an individual is wearing a facemask and is therefore, safe to enter a building, identifying a domestic abuse perpetrator returning to the scene of a crime and alerting police. There are even opportunities for good that we have not thought of yet. It is therefore not only a waste not to use this technology where we can, prioritising making society a safer place, it is immoral to stand by and let crimes continue while we have effective, reliable mitigation solutions.
Urban populations are expanding rapidly around the globe, with an expected growth of 1.56 billion by 2040. As the number of people living and working in cities continues to grow, the ability to keep everyone safe is an increasing challenge. However, technology companies are developing products and solutions with these futuristic cities in mind, as the reality is closer than you may think. Solutions that can help to watch over public places and share data insights with city workers and officials are increasingly enabling smart cities to improve the experience and safety of the people who reside there. Rising scope of 5G, AI, IoT and the Cloud The main foundations that underpin smart cities are 5G, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and the Internet of Things (IoT) and the Cloud. Each is equally important, and together, these technologies enable city officials to gather and analyse more detailed insights than ever before. For public safety in particular, having IoT and cloud systems in place will be one of the biggest factors to improving the quality of life for citizens. Smart cities have come a long way in the last few decades, but to truly make a smart city safe, real-time situational awareness and cross-agency collaboration are key areas which must be developed as a priority. Innovative surveillance cameras with integrated IoT Public places need to be safe, whether that is an open park, shopping centre, or the main roads through towns Public places need to be safe, whether that is an open park, shopping centre, or the main roads through towns. From dangerous drivers to terrorist attacks, petty crime on the streets to high profile bank robberies, innovative surveillance cameras with integrated IoT and cloud technologies can go some way to helping respond quickly to, and in some cases even prevent, the most serious incidents. Many existing safety systems in cities rely on aging and in some places legacy technology, such as video surveillance cameras. Many of these also use on-premises systems rather than utilising the benefits of the cloud. Smart programming to deliver greater insights These issues, though not creating a major problem today, do make it more challenging for governments and councils to update their security. Changing every camera in a city is a huge undertaking, but in turn, doing so would enable all cameras to be connected to the cloud, and provide more detailed information which can be analysed by smart programming to deliver greater insights. The physical technologies that are currently present in most urban areas lack the intelligent connectivity, interoperability and integration interfaces that smart cities need. Adopting digital technologies isn’t a luxury, but a necessity. Smart surveillance systems It enables teams to gather data from multiple sources throughout the city in real-time, and be alerted to incidents as soon as they occur. Increased connectivity and collaboration ensures that all teams that need to be aware of a situation are informed instantly. For example, a smart surveillance system can identify when a road accident has occurred. It can not only alert the nearest ambulance to attend the scene, but also the local police force to dispatch officers. An advanced system that can implement road diversions could also close roads around the incident immediately and divert traffic to other routes, keeping everyone moving and avoiding a build-up of vehicles. This is just one example: without digital systems, analysing patterns of vehicle movements to address congestion issues could be compromised, as would the ability to build real-time crime maps and deploy data analytics which make predictive policing and more effective crowd management possible. Cloud-based technologies Cloud-based technologies provide the interoperability, scalability and automation Cloud-based technologies provide the interoperability, scalability and automation that is needed to overcome the limitations of traditional security systems. Using these, smart cities can develop a fully open systems architecture that delivers interoperation with both local and other remote open systems. The intelligence of cloud systems can not only continue to allow for greater insights as technology develops over time, but it can do so with minimal additional infrastructure investment. Smart surveillance in the real world Mexico City has a population of almost 9 million people, but if you include the whole metropolitan area, this number rises sharply to over 21 million in total, making it one of the largest cities on the planet. Seven years ago, the city first introduced its Safe City initiative, and ever since has been developing newer and smarter ways to keep its citizens safe. In particular, its cloud-based security initiative is making a huge impact. Over the past three years, Mexico City has installed 58,000 new video surveillance cameras throughout the city, in public spaces and on transport, all of which are connected to the City’s C5 (Command, Control, Computers, Communications and Citizen Contact) facility. Smart Cities operations The solution enables officers as well as the general public to upload videos via a mobile app to share information quickly, fixed, body-worn and vehicle cameras can also be integrated to provide exceptional insight into the city’s operations. The cloud-based platform can easily be upgraded to include the latest technology innovations such as licence plate reading, behavioural analysis software, video analytics and facial recognition software, which will all continue to bring down crime rates and boost response times to incidents. The right cloud approach Making the shift to cloud-based systems enables smart cities to eliminate dependence on fibre-optic connectivity and take advantage of a variety of Internet and wireless connectivity options that can significantly reduce application and communication infrastructure costs. Smart cities need to be effective in years to come, not just in the present day, or else officials have missed one of the key aspects of a truly smart city. System designers must build technology foundations now that can be easily adapted in the future to support new infrastructure as it becomes available. Open system architecture An open system architecture will also be vital for smart cities to enhance their operations For example, this could include opting for a true cloud application that can support cloud-managed local devices and automate their management. An open system architecture will also be vital for smart cities to enhance their operations and deliver additional value-add services to citizens as greater capabilities become possible in the years to come. The advances today in cloud and IoT technologies are rapid, and city officials and authorities have more options now to develop their smart cities than ever before and crucially, to use these innovations to improve public safety. New safety features Though implementing these cloud-based systems now requires investment, as new safety features are designed, there will be lower costs and challenges associated with introducing these because the basic infrastructure will already exist. Whether that’s gunshot detection or enabling the sharing of video infrastructure and data across multiple agencies in real time, smart video surveillance on cloud-based systems can bring a wealth of the new opportunities.
Security’s intersection with consumer electronics is on view at CES 2020, the world’s largest technology event, Jan. 7-10 in Las Vegas. The giant show features more than 170,000 attendees, 4,500 exhibitors and 1,100 industry thought-leaders featured on the CES stage. A range of technologies will be on display, from artificial intelligence (AI) to 5G, vehicle technology to AR/VR (augmented and virtual reality), robotics to home automation. Security plays a prominent role, too.The impact of this event for the smart home could be about delivering home analytics and enhancing privacy" Smart home market on the forefront The smart home market is a major focus. “For the smart home market at CES this year, we expect to see numerous announcements regarding home awareness,” says Blake Kozak, Senior Principal Analyst at IHS Markit. “This will include brands offering up additional analytics for consumer security cameras with a focus on edge-based solutions.” “The impact of this [event] for the smart home could be about delivering home analytics and enhancing privacy through cloudless architectures and new electronic door lock approaches,” he adds. An example of cloud analytics is the Resideo Home app, introduced in December, which will make whole-home monitoring possible for four critical networks of the home – water, air, energy and security. Resideo promises a “simplified and integrated smart home experience.” Video is also prominent at the show. “For cameras, we can expect to see more cameras focused on the outdoor space and possibly new form factors for video doorbells,” says Kozak. Familiar security industry brands exhibiting at CES 2020 include ADT, Ring, August Home and Yale (both part of ASSA ABLOY), Bosch and Alarm.com. Focus on Cybersecurity In 2020, companies will continue to focus on solutions for protecting consumer data" Cybersecurity is an aspect of many of the devices on display at CES. “Device security and data privacy play a key role in the adoption of connected devices,” says Elizabeth Parks, President, Parks Associates. “Consumer security concerns for smart home products will continue to be a barrier to adoption in the U.S. and Europe, and these concerns can actually intensify with device adoption-71% of U.S. smart home households are concerned about cybersecurity. In 2020, companies will continue to focus on solutions for protecting consumer data. One big area of interest is protection on the network router, providing whole home solutions, which are very appealing to consumers.” “At CES we will see the traditional players introducing new DIY (do-it-yourself) products, as well as new players announcing new product features, services, and partnerships,” Parks adds. Smart access control Smart locks will be among the security products at CES 2020. For example, PassiveBolt, a lock company, will show the Shepherd Lock, a touch-enabled smart lock with enhanced security through sensors and AI. The add-on lock converts existing locksets into touch-activated devices. Another lock manufacturer is Kwikset, whose door locks and door hardware include Wi-Fi-enabled smart locks, Bluetooth-enabled smart locks, keyless and keyway-less locks and connected home technology. Video doorbells, including industry-innovator Ring, have been a hit in the consumer market. At CES, Ring will expand the mission to make neighbourhoods safer by creating a “Ring of Security” around homes and communities with a suite of home security products and services. The “Neighbors by Ring” app enables affordable, complete, proactive home and neighbourhood security. Homeguard offers a range of affordable CCTV solutions for home and small business DIY CCTV demonstrations DIY security systems are another market. Homeguard is a leading DIY consumer brand offering a range of affordable CCTV solutions for home and small business, including wired and wireless CCTV kits, smart cameras, home alarm systems and wire-free HD CCTV kits. Swann Communications is also at the forefront of surveillance and monitoring with new products developments including wire-free HD cameras and doorbells, professional CCTV video surveillance systems, and 1080p full HD systems with “True Detect” heat and motion sensing. AVTECH, and subsidiary YesGo Tech, will demonstrate a compact Wi-Fi home security set, a series of special cameras with face recognition, thermal detection and license plate recognition, customised central management software and a university ID tag that is compatible with access control, OEM and ODM opportunities. Security and automation solutions D-Link’s home networking, security and automation solutions will help consumers connect, view, share, entertain, work and play. SECO-LARM, manufacturer of a Room Occupancy Monitor that shows whether a room is in use, has a line of keypads and proximity readers with built-in Bluetooth for convenient access. Another smart home security solutions provider, Climax Technology, integrates wireless security, home automation, energy management, home emergency monitoring and live visual monitoring. Personal safety mobile application Manufacturers are positioning outdoor cameras as deterrents to theft before a burglary happens" WaryMe designs and develops a personal safety mobile application to improve a user’s security in public places, schools, transports and companies by addressing major risks such as terrorism attacks, intrusion, fire and even industrial accidents. An all-in-one mobile application integrates alerting, crisis management and mass notification features. “Market players are looking to expand beyond established smart home devices like smart thermostats and networked cameras to products like smart water leak detectors, smart pet feeders, and smart air purifiers,” says Elizabeth Parks. “Manufacturers are positioning outdoor cameras as deterrents to theft before a burglary happens. This trend is part of a broader security marketing effort to extend the perimeter of home security beyond traditional home access points.” “Familiarity with smart home devices lags behind familiarity with smart entertainment products; it even lags that of smart speakers, which are quite new in the market,” adds Parks. “In 2020, we will see players working to advance the visibility and marketing around device integration, and specifically focus on use case scenarios around safety, security, and convenience, which have always been the primary drivers of adoption of these types of products.”
The UK Government has been working to reduce the risks associated with illegal drone use since a high-profile incident at UK’s Gatwick Airport in December 2018, when a drone sighting triggered a three-day shutdown of the UK’s second busiest airport, disrupting the travel plans of 140,000 people and affecting 1,000 flights. To address growing security threats by drones, the UK Government has released its ‘Counter-Unmanned Aircraft Strategy’. ‘Counter-Unmanned Aircraft Strategy’ This strategy sets out our approach to countering the threat the malicious or negligent use of drones can bring" “This strategy sets out our approach to countering the threat the malicious or negligent use of drones can bring,” says Brandon Lewis, the U.K. Minister of State for Security. “It will provide the security the public and drone users require to continue to enjoy the benefits of leisure and commercial drone use and facilitate the growth of the drone industry.” “Given the challenge posed by rapid advances in drone technology and the potential threat, the strategy will provide overarching direction to our efforts,” says Lewis. The strategy focuses on ‘small drones’, those weighing less than 20 kg (44 pounds). Countering malicious use of aerial drones The UK Counter-Unmanned Aircraft Strategy centres on mitigating the highest-harm domestic risks resulting from malicious use of aerial drones. They are: Facilitating terrorist attacks, such as modifying commercially-available drones to conduct reconnaissance or attacks. Facilitating crime, especially in prisons, where drones are currently used to deliver contraband. Disrupting critical national infrastructure, such as airports, where a malicious incursion using a drone can have serious safety, security and economic consequences. Potential use by hostile state actors. Maximising benefits of drone technology The initiative will also look to build strong relationships with industry to ensure high security standards Over the next three years, the strategy will seek to reduce the risks posed by the highest-harm use of drones while maximising the benefits of drone technology. It will develop a comprehensive understanding of evolving risks and take a “full spectrum” approach to deter, detect and disrupt the misuse of drones. The initiative will also look to build strong relationships with industry to ensure high security standards. Further, promoting access to counter-drone capabilities and effective legislation, training and guidance will empower the police and other operational responders. Tactical response to drone-based threats Because technology is rapidly evolving, the response needs to keep pace, according to the strategy document. Lewis adds, “We will therefore work to understand how drone-based threats might evolve in the future, both at the tactical and strategic levels.” The strategy will be to build an end-to-end approach to tackling the highest-harm criminal use of drones. It will also work to make it easier to identify malicious drone use against a backdrop of increased legitimate use. Legal drone operators will be required to register with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and to pass an online competency test before flying a drone. Retailers who follow a specific set of safety guidelines when selling drones will be designated ‘DroneSafe’. Unmanned traffic management system The government is working toward future implementation of an unmanned traffic management (UTM) system, which provides a means of preventing collisions between unmanned aircraft and other manned or unmanned aircraft. The current strategy includes early planning for the system. An Industry Action Group will ensure a continuing relationship with the drone industry and help to improve existing counter-drone measures and identify new opportunities, such as use of ‘Geo-Fencing’ to restrict drones from flying in certain areas. Regulating commercial and domestic drones The UK Department of Transport is responsible for safe and lawful use of drones within the UK airspace The strategy will seek to communicate the UK’s security requirements to the counter-drone industry and to encourage a thriving sector that is aware of, and responsive to, the needs of government. Regulating drones is the responsibility of two UK government departments. The UK Department of Transport is responsible for safe and lawful use of drones within the UK airspace, while the Home Office has overall responsibility for domestic counter-drone activity. Fast-evolving drone and counter-drone technology Also, the Center for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) has been involved in reducing the vulnerability of sensitive sites, including airports. New performance measures will track the strategy’s success. Due to the fast-evolving nature of drone and counter-drone technology, the intent is to review and, if necessary, refresh the strategy in three years.
As the deal/no deal prospects of Brexit are tossed in a whirlwind of UK and EU politics, the uncertainty of the back-and-forth has broadly impacted general economic trends, and by extension, the physical security market. The new deadline for a Brexit agreement is October 31, already postponed six months from the scheduled April 12 departure date. Numbers show that Britain’s GDP shrank in the second quarter, possibly reflecting fewer exports because of Brexit uncertainty. And beyond the current indecision lies the long-term impact of a possible change in trading status between the United Kingdom and continental Europe. Other issues include capital flow and labor mobility. Brexit uncertainty leading to security concerns Loss of shared information with the EU will make the UK less safe “Companies … are unclear about their future,” comments Martin Warren of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. “Companies are making decisions now about jobs, supply chains, headquarters and asset locations, incurring significant, and possibly unnecessary, cost and upheaval.” Warren fears the destructive effects of a ‘no deal’ outcome and hopes politicians will break the deadlock and restore business confidence. Security implications of Brexit extend beyond economics. Loss of shared information with the EU will make the UK less safe. Extradition across EU borders will be more difficult, and exchange of data such as fingerprints and vehicle registrations is at risk. The Irish border after Brexit is of particular concern to security professionals. Countering threat of international terrorism Robert Hall of London First and Alison Wakefield of Security Institute say the security impact of departing the EU will be long lasting and profound. “In security terms, the UK will still have to contend with international terrorism, transnational crime and the global movement of people, all challenges that require wide scale cooperation.” They add that leaving the EU will require “a significant investment in people, resources and databases to cope with the anticipated volumes of traffic through ports, airports and tunnels.” Analyst company IHS Markit earlier commented about the impact on the security industry of Brexit’s drag on the UK economy, “Access control, intruder and fire alarm markets typically track construction rates closely and are forecast to be affected most. However, a large cut to infrastructure spending would be just as damaging to the video surveillance market.” UK security companies prefer ‘soft exit’ from EU If a ‘soft exit’ trade deal is not negotiated, the UK would have to revert to WTO trade rules If a ‘soft exit’ trade deal is not negotiated, the UK would have to revert to World Trade Organisation (WTO) trade rules, which means tariffs on trade between the UK and the EU, says IHS Markit. There are five British-based access-control and intruder-alarm vendors supplying the European market in significant quantity – each with revenue exceeding $10 million. IHS Markit estimates these companies combined account for less than 10 percent of total European, Middle-Eastern and African (EMEA) market revenues for both industries. Uncertain future of UK security marketplace Asset protection specialist VPS Security Services has warned that the ongoing Brexit saga will likely lead to a rise in vacant commercial and residential properties as developers and investors are more reluctant to move forward with their UK real estate strategies. Seemingly endless machinations and shifting proposals are making the eventual outcome of Brexit very much a guessing game. Uncertainty translates into a volatile and changing outlook, and the eventual impact on the broader economy is an open question. As a reflection of that economy, the security marketplace will inevitably feel the economic impact, too, not to mention the new security challenges likely to ensue.
Digital Barriers, a globally renowned provider of edge-intelligent surveillance and security technologies, reveals its collaboration with the Future Farms Cymru project, run by North Wales Police. Real-time surveillance solutions Digital Barriers has equipped a farm in North Wales with its real-time surveillance solutions, to demonstrate the role that sophisticated technologies can play in cutting the cost of rural crime, estimated by the National Farmers Union to have reached 54 million pounds in 2019. Rural areas and farmland can be inherently difficult environments to secure. However, Digital Barriers’ scalable and flexible solutions are designed to work in demanding conditions, such as remote and vulnerable locations. AI-based edge analytics Digital Barriers’ video streaming capability and AI-based edge analytics can provide reliable and secure monitoring Proven and trusted within the military and defence domain, Digital Barriers’ state-of-the-art video streaming capability and AI-based edge analytics can provide reliable and secure monitoring, thereby protecting people, places and assets. The first technology being showcased as part of Future Farms Cymru project is a live streaming body worn camera for the enhanced protection of lone workers. If an incident occurs, the wearer can press the urgent assistance button, which transmits video and a live GPS location back to a designated monitoring centre, providing immediate response. EdgeVis Shield The second is EdgeVis Shield, a combination of easy-to-deploy ground sensors that can be used to secure vast perimeters, including farmland containing high value assets. The autonomous system automatically detects when irregular behaviour occurs around a perimeter, sending alerts and live video, if a trespasser or vehicle approaches. PC Dewi Evans of the North Wales Police Rural Crime Team commented on the announcement, “In recent years, we are increasingly seeing rural communities and businesses being targeted by criminals. Therefore, it is vital that rural businesses employ the right security methods to protect their assets. Criminals need to know that the farm they’re targeting could be equipped with this cutting-edge technology and they will be almost certainly caught.” Countering rise in rural crime Neil Hendry, Vice President EMEA at Digital Barriers, said, “I am happy that our technology is being used on the front line in the fight against rural crime. The COVID-19 pandemic has adversely affected businesses of all shapes and sizes, with farmers struggling to protect themselves against criminal activity.” Neil Hendry adds, “Future Farms Cymru is an important initiative, and we are delighted to be able help shape and support the future food and farming policy, with our robust video surveillance technology.”
ClanTect and ePm have signed a partnership agreement for the sale and servicing of ClanTect’s next generation Motion Detection systems (also referred to as ‘heartbeat’ detection systems) for the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Detecting humans in vehicles ClanTect’s systems are used to detect the hidden presence of people inside vehicles and are deployed within a wide range of organisations in the Border Security, Prisons and Critical Infrastructure markets. Customers include globally renowned organisations, such as the UK Border Force and Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency and Her Majesty’s Prison Service in the United Kingdom. Tens of thousands of clandestine operatives and fugitives are detected by ClanTect each year, with hundreds of lives being saved. Ultra-sensitive sensors Its ultra-sensitive sensors can detect even the faintest of movements, from anywhere within a vehicle ClanTect’s systems are based on sound and vibration technology. Its ultra-sensitive sensors can detect even the faintest of movements, from anywhere within a vehicle. The system is extremely fast (approx. 60 seconds for a vehicle search), it is very easy to use, the search process is fully automated, and, unlike X-Ray and some other technologies, it is completely safe for both the operator and for the stowaway. ClanTect’s system is extremely accurate. It utilises a unique ‘blocking’ capability, which eliminates any nearby surrounding noise from outside of the vehicle. Compact 2nd generation systems With the launch of their 2nd generation systems, ClanTect provides smaller and more compact devices, which are now fully wireless, thereby making them easy to deploy in ad-hoc outdoor roadside locations, even in windy weather conditions. Professor Steve Daley, Managing Director of ClanTect commented, “Our systems can enable the UAE authorities to meet some of today’s most pressing security challenges, such as human trafficking, the protection of critical infrastructure and the security of custodial facilities.” Protection of critical infrastructure Steve Daley adds, “We have also ensured that our systems have been thoroughly tested to meet the challenging environmental conditions faced in the UAE.” Hadi R Omer, Director of Sales & Marketing (Systems & Solutions) at ePm said, “Here at ePm, we have been serving the needs of government and commercial customers since the 1980’s, including the Ministry of Interior, Abu Dhabi Police, Dubai Police, UAE Armed Forces, Dubai Customs, and ADNOC. We feel that ClanTect’s technology perfectly complements our existing portfolio of security products and offers tremendous operational capabilities for public and private sector organisations across the UAE.”
BIRD Aerosystems, the globally renowned developer of Airborne Missile Protection Systems (AMPS) and Airborne Surveillance, Information, and Observation (ASIO) solutions, has been awarded a new contract by the Czech Republic Air Force. Under the contract, BIRD Aerosystems will provide additional AMPS-MV systems with the patented MACS (Missile Approach Confirmation Sensor) for the Czech Air Force’s Mi-17 fleet. This project is a part of the overall modernisation plan of the Czech Mi-17 transport helicopter fleet. AMPS-MV systems with patented MACS BIRD’s AMPS are already operational on the Czech Air Force Mi-17 helicopters and have been successfully deployed in different conflict zones, including Afghanistan. This contract comes after BIRD Aerosystems having conducted an overall upgrade to the Czech’s existing AMPS systems earlier this year, which provided enhanced functionality to the MILDS UV detection sensors and the MCDU Mission computers. As part of the current contract BIRD Aerosystems will provide the Czech Air Force its AMPS systems with the MACS sensor, which ensures that no false alarms will be detected and the system will react only to validated real threats. Ronen Factor, the Co-Chief Executive Officer and Founder of BIRD Aerosystems, said “We appreciate the confidence placed in our AMPS solution by the Czech Air Force, who decided to purchase additional systems for its Mi-17 fleet. Equipped with BIRD’s AMPS-MV solution with the MACS sensor, they can rest assured knowing that their aircraft and crew are safe, even when flying in automatic mode in the most complicated conflict zones.” Airborne Missile Protection System The AMPS system is known to automatically detect, verify, and foil missile attacks BIRD Aerosystems’ Airborne Missile Protection System (AMPS) provides the most enhanced protection for military and civilian aircraft against all known Surface to Air Missiles (SAM), including MANPADS, laser beam rider threats, and radar-guided missiles. The AMPS system is known to automatically detect, verify, and foil missile attacks through the effective use of counter-measure decoys (flares and chaff) that jam the missile’s IR (Infrared) seeker and protect the aircraft. MACS (Missile Approach Confirmation Sensor) MACS (Missile Approach Confirmation Sensor) is an advanced semi-active confirmation radar, which significantly reduces the false alarm rate of the overall missile warning system. Queued by a suspected threat, MACS points towards it and performs a doppler-based interrogation to confirm the existence of a valid threat. By doing so, MACS provides the most effective filtering of all known natural and human-made types of false alarms that are typically detected by electro-optical sensors, and ensures that only real missiles will be declared by the system and reacted upon. Fully operational, BIRD’s AMPS-MV with the MACS sensor is provided as a turn-key solution that includes design, installation, integration, certification and support, and is certified by major aircraft manufacturers.
The city of Arnhem has chosen Nedap to regulate vehicle flows and to provide a seamless vehicle access experience in its city centre. Due to the increase in the number of vehicles in the city centre, it was a challenge for Arnhem to ensure that the traffic flow runs smoothly and safely, to keep the historic and tourist centre accessible and livable. Vehicle identification solutions With the implementation of Nedap’s vehicle identification solutions, authorised vehicles and drivers can access the city in a safe and seamless way. The combination with Nedap’s MOOV City Access software ensures that vehicle access in the city centre easily can be regulated. The city of Arnhem wants to regulate vehicle access to the centre and ensure only authorised vehicles can enter The city of Arnhem is located in the east of the Netherlands. Because of the historical centre, cultural sights and a wide range of entertainment facilities, it is also an attractive city for tourists. To ensure that the city centre remains traffic and pedestrian friendly, the city of Arnhem wants to regulate vehicle access to the centre and ensure only authorised vehicles can enter. MOOV City Access platform By limiting traffic flows, the narrow streets in the historic centre of Arnhem turned into an attractive and safe public place for pedestrians and cyclists, creating a livable city. The city of Arnhem has chosen Nedap for its MOOV City Access platform combined with its advanced solutions for automatic vehicle identification, based on long-range RFID (Radiofrequency Identification) and ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Recognition) technology. Authorised vehicle access in specific zones The solution is supplied and installed by Nedap’s partner - ST&D. Nedap’s MOOV City Access platform is implemented to control vehicle access in specific zones. With this, Arnhem ensures that only authorised vehicles can enter these zones and only if they have permission to do so. With the implementation of RFID readers and ANPR cameras, vehicles can be identified from a long distance, ensuring automated and safe vehicle throughput. Nedap’s long-range RFID solution, TRANSIT will be used to ensure that local residents, emergency vehicles, licenced taxis and municipal services have easy access to the city centre, without compromising on safety. TRANSIT long-range RFID solution Authorised vehicles equipped with a RFID tag will have fast access at vehicle entrances TRANSIT is a proven technology that enables highly secure identification and tracking of vehicles and drivers, up to a distance of 10 metres. Authorised vehicles equipped with a RFID tag will have fast access at vehicle entrances, without the need to stop. The all-in-one licence plate camera, ANPR Lumo will grant access to vehicles based on their license plate number. Licence plate recognition is a perfect solution for specific user groups or situations, in which vehicles require access temporarily or incidentally to the city centre. For example, retail delivery trucks can be given access at pre-defined locations, assigned days and time zones, regulating vehicle access to the city by reason. Digitisation of city access “By choosing and implementing Nedap’s MOOV City Access platform in combination with Nedap’s licence plate recognition solution, we have taken a major step in the further digitisation of our city access in Arnhem,” said Hans ten Barge, Chain Director Parking at the Municipality of Arnhem. Nedap Identification Systems is a specialist in Automatic Vehicle Identification and Vehicle Access Control solutions, for over the past decades. Nedap has developed a unique portfolio of proven long-range RFID and ANPR solutions that enable seamless third-party system integration. Vehicles and drivers are identified automatically, securing a free-flow yet highly secure vehicle access experience. MOOV City Access is Nedap’s vehicle access control solution, specifically designed for regulating vehicle flows in inner cities. MOOV’s hardware and software are compatible with Nedap’s RFID readers and ANPR cameras. This complete solution ensures a livable and safe city.
Round table discussion
Many of us take critical infrastructure for granted in our everyday lives. We turn on a tap, flip a switch, push a button, and water, light, and heat are all readily available. But it is important to remember that computerised systems manage critical infrastructure facilities, making them vulnerable to cyber-attacks. The recent ransomware attack on the Colonial Pipeline is an example of the new types of threats. In addition, any number of physical attacks is also possibilities. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the security challenges of protecting critical infrastructure?
The new year is several weeks old, so it is safe to say that many of our New Year resolutions have fallen by the wayside. Despite the limited success of our personal resolutions, the new year is a great time to take stock, look ahead, and plan to make 2020 the best year yet. Thinking about our industry as a whole, we asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What should be the security industry’s “New Year’s resolution?”
Public spaces provide soft targets and are often the sites of terrorist or active shooter attacks. Public spaces, by definition, require easy accessibility and unrestricted movement. Given that openness, what security technologies can provide real results? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How is technology innovation impacting the security of public spaces?