Smiths Detection, a globally renowned threat detection and security technology solutions company, has announced that it has developed the capability to detect synthetic cannabinoids, commonly known as Spice or K2, with its IONSCAN 600 trace detection solution. Detecting synthetic cannabinoids This development comes following an extensive R&D process and testing trials with major correctional institutions around the world and expands the IONSCAN 600 existing detection library of explosives...
Gunshot Detection Systems market report introduces basic information including definition, application, industry chain structure, industry overview, classification, policy analysis, and news analysis. Insightful predictions for the Gunshot Detection Systems Market for the coming few years have also been included in the report. Gunshot Detection Systems report The report provides a detailed analysis of global market size, segmentation market growth, regional and country-level market size, marke...
Radio Physics announce winning the security category in Prosegur’s “COME IN”, open innovation programme. From amongst the more than 190 start-ups from 33 different countries, the winning companies will receive support from the different units at Prosegur, one of Spain's top security multinational, to develop and implement their projects worldwide. Radio Physics, a renowned provider of stand-off concealed threat detection, is pleased to announce winning the security category of...
Smiths Detection announces its newest X-ray inspection system, HI-SCAN 5030C, that addresses a critical gap in commercial security screening solutions with its optimal size, durability and mobility. Combined with a HiTraX 3 electronic platform for superior image quality, the HI-SCAN 5030C is specifically designed to enhance security screening operations from courthouses to corporate campuses. Its compact size and lightweight construction enable it to fit seamlessly into checkpoints and mailroom...
Johnson Controls will showcase solutions and thought leadership critical to safe building reopening during the virtual Global Security Exchange Plus (GSX+) conference. From Sept. 21 to Sept. 25, 2020, Johnson Controls experts will demonstrate and discuss the latest security innovations that have become integral to intelligent security during the COVID-19 crisis and beyond. Attendees can interact with Johnson Controls leaders during keynote event sessions, technology demos and a thought leader i...
SMART SHOOTER, a designer, developer, and manufacturer of innovative fire control systems that significantly increase the accuracy and lethality of small arms, announces that it has successfully completed another step in testing the SMASH Hopper in different configurations. SMASH Hopper, SMART SHOOTER's Light Remote-Controlled Weapon Station (LRCWS), was mounted on Plasan Re’em’s Armoured Toyota Hilux and successfully shot and hit several moving ground and air targets from more than...
Patriot One Technologies Inc. (‘Patriot One’), developer of the PATSCANTM multi-sensor threat detection platform, is pleased to announce the appointment of Karen Hersh as its new Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Corporate Secretary, effective immediately. In this role, Ms. Hersh will be responsible for overseeing all financial aspects of Patriot One Technologies Inc., while supporting the Board of Directors on strategic matters relating to the commercial deployment of the company’s PATSCAN platform, corporate development initiatives and capital markets. Mike Barnsley, the current CFO of the company due to retire, will support her transition into the new role, prior to retiring. Supporting PATSCAN platform deployment Karen Hersh brings with her a great deal of expertise in financial management of both public and private companies" “We’re excited to welcome Karen Hersh to Patriot One Technologies, as she brings with her a great deal of expertise in financial management of both public and private companies,” shared Martin Cronin, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Patriot One Technologies, Inc. Martin adds, “Karen’s hands-on CFO experience in financial planning and reporting, corporate governance, business development and operations for start-up and growth stage technology companies makes her the right choice for this key C-Suite position.” Strategic planning, mergers and acquisitions expert He further stated, “She has a demonstrated and proven track record for leading cross-functional teams to achieve business objectives and value creation, which is critical as we continue to execute on our vision and capitalise on the market opportunity before us.” Ms. Karen Hersh joins Patriot One Technologies, Inc. with over 20 years of experience across a broad spectrum of finance activities, including financial reporting, strategic planning and corporate finance, including mergers and acquisitions (M&A). Cyber security technologies veteran She has also held several senior leadership roles in the past, most recently as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for a global private equity company that is focused on cyber security technologies, where she was responsible for mergers and acquisitions, financial reporting, and portfolio management. Prior to this role, Ms. Hersh held the positions of Chief Financial Officer at VIQ Solutions Inc. and Vice President of Corporate Finance & Investment Banking at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC). Ms. Hersh holds a Bachelor of Commerce from McGill University and is a Canadian Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA). Global deployment of life-saving technologies I am eager to assist the company in bringing its vision to life and creating a world safer from acts of violence on our global citizens" “I’m very excited about the opportunity to work with this passionate team in moving its life-saving technology towards global deployments and success,” said Karen Hersh, adding “When first approached about this role, I was immediately impressed with the approach Patriot One Technologies Inc. is taking with its multi-sensor platform, as being both unique and highly important to protecting our communities.” She concludes by saying, “I am eager to assist the company in bringing its vision to life and creating a world safer from acts of violence on our global citizens.” Moving towards full scale operations Mike Barnsley, Patriot Technologies’ current CFO, has been looking towards retirement, and feels this is the right time as the company moves from start-up to full scale operations with the PATSCAN platform in commercial deployment. Mr. Barnsley will ensure a smooth transition of duties to Ms. Hersh prior to his departure and will serve in an advisory role to the Company. “Today, we say goodbye to Mike, who has been a great influence for me, the board and our management team in steering Patriot One on this first leg of our journey from inception to productisation,” expressed Peter van der Gracht, Chairman of the Board at Patriot One Technologies Inc. Peter adds, “We wish him well in his retirement, but know he will be watching us closely, as he’s been an instrumental part of the company and will want to see success of the PATSCAN platform in saving lives and a way of life in all our communities.”
STANLEY Security, a global integrator of comprehensive security solutions and an electronic security company, has announced its investment in Evolv Technology, the globally renowned company in artificial intelligence (AI)-based touchless security screening. This investment, backed by STANLEY Ventures, the venture capital arm of Stanley Black & Decker, forms a strategic partnership between the two companies. Evolv Express Evolv Express, the company’s touchless security screening system, makes it possible for venues of all kinds to keep visitors safe from concealed weapons, pandemic health threats and intruders. Powered by the Evolv Cortex AI software platform, the system uses proprietary sensors and AI to differentiate weapons from personal items in real-time. Evolv Express keeps high-volume entrances flowing, by reliably detecting guns and other weapons, as people walk through naturally, without emptying their pockets, bags, backpacks or other belongings. The system can screen more than 3,600 people per hour, which is 10 times faster than metal detectors. Touchless security screening solutions Evolv’s innovative, touchless security screening solutions are an integral part of the security industry’s future" "We're committed to helping organisations create safer, healthier environments for their employees, customers, students and partners, and our investment in Evolv Technology helps us deliver on that commitment,” said STANLEY Security, Global President, Matthew (Matt) Kushner. He adds, “Evolv’s innovative, touchless security screening solutions are an integral part of the security industry’s future. When paired with data analytics and expertise from STANLEY Security, these solutions will deliver even more value to organisations as they adjust operations and enhance security measures to reopen and stay open safely.” Powerful additions to security programs Evolv Technology’s systems are powerful additions to security programs at K-12 schools, higher education institutions, hospitals, sports venues, office and federal buildings, outdoor recreation venues and more. To date, the systems have been used to screen more than 50 million individuals at venues and facilities across the globe. “We’re proud to partner with STANLEY Security and Stanley Black & Decker to add even more capabilities to our technology and deliver superior value to our customers,” said Evolv Technology’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Peter George. Strategic partnership He adds, “This strategic partnership leverages the resources, capabilities, industry expertise and market presence of both companies. The breadth of STANLEY Security’s solutions portfolio and reach of its global installed base, coupled with Evolv’s modern technology and commitment to transforming the security screening space, makes for a powerful partnership.”
Milipol Qatar 2020, the Middle East’s international event for Homeland Security and Civil Defence which returns to Doha this October, will feature a powerful three-day seminar program in which decision makers and security experts will outline major strategies for a safer post-COVID 19 world amongst other main foresights. The program will run alongside the 13th Milipol Qatar at the Doha International Exhibition and Convention Centre from October 26-28. Biometrics, Cybersecurity And Contactless Technology In the cast of the Mega Events Security session, this will have particular relevance to Qatar" The two-hour seminars will open on the afternoon of Monday, October 26 with a session devoted to ‘Security by Design: Cybersecurity and new technology including biometrics and contactless technology.’ The morning of Tuesday, October 27 will be dedicated to ‘Mega Events Security’ while the afternoon session will focus on ‘Crisis Management and Health Security - Post-COVID feedback.’ The program rounds out on Wednesday, October 28th with a session on ‘Firefighting Emergency and Security Systems.’ Lessons from COVID-19 pandemic The seminars have been curated so that the Homeland Security and Civil Defense industries can together plan strategies" “The seminars have been curated so that the Homeland Security and Civil Defence industries can together plan strategies for a safer world in light of the lessons learnt from the COVID -19 pandemic. Much of the program’s outcomes will most probably impact very closely these sectors worldwide,” explained Préfet Yann Jounot, CEO of Civipol – the technical implementer of the French ministry of the Interior – and President of Milipol events. “As this will be the first major industry event of its type to be held following the pandemic’s outbreak, we anticipate some probing debate and recommendations for innovative processes and procedures to tackle future global emergencies.” “In the cast of the Mega Events Security session, this will have particular relevance to Qatar as it heads further down the road to the hosting of the 2022 FIFA World Cup and the much vaunted possibility of next year hosting a FIFA Pan Arab tournament.” Exhibitors include Fire and protection infrastructure The exhibitor line-up includes names from Homeland Security and Civil Defense sectors Milipol Qatar has attracted a strong exhibitor turnout from organisations across Scandinavia, Europe, the UK, USA, Eastern Mediterranean, Middle East and Far East. The exhibitor line-up includes names from Homeland Security and Civil Defence sectors which span a wide breadth of equipment, systems, product, and consultancy offerings. Confirmed exhibitors include: fire and protection infrastructure support product and engineering systems suppliers; services and safety training consultants; manufacturers of access control, authentication and cyber-security systems; risk assessment and crisis management advisors; fibres and fabric suppliers; producers of measurement and analysis, mobility and optronic solutions; communications and transmission systems as well as weapons and ammunition suppliers. Online registrations open Milipol Qatar 2020 is expected to welcome over 200 exhibitors and close to 8,000 visitors The industry-only event, which is under the patronage of His Highness the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani, is organised by Qatar’s Ministry of Interior in partnership with Paris-based international event organiser Comexposium, acting on behalf of the GIE Milipol headed by Civipol, the technical implementer of the French ministry of the Interior. Moreover, the French minister of the Interior is a guest of honour of the event. Milipol Qatar 2020 is expected to welcome over 200 exhibitors and close to 8,000 visitors. The event’s online registration platform for both exhibitors, and industry professional visitors, who enter free-of-charge, is now open.
Videotec is expanding its range of explosion-proof products with the new MBA communication box, which has been designed for optimal installation of Maximus, IP or analogue cameras in potentially explosive environments. Much more than a simple junction box, this communication box provides low voltage local power and allows a fast Ethernet connection, thanks to the integrated Ethernet switch that has three RJ45 ports and an SFP port for fibre optic connection. The type of SFP module can be chosen according to the installation requirements. The internal spaces are designed to make access to cables easier and to increase user-friendliness when it comes to connection procedures. The internal circuitry also allows a bypass of analogue video signals, and all inputs/outputs available across MAXIMUS Videotec products. Epoxy-powder protective coating MBA has been designed to integrate and work exclusively with the MAXIMUS range of Videotec products, and so that it can connect a PTZ camera to the associated washing kit (or two fixed cameras to their washing kits). MBA is made of marine-grade aluminium that has an epoxy-powder protective coating. This means that the unit can operate in corrosive areas, such as industrial or marine environments. MBA is the complete and competitive solution for professional installation of the Videotec MAXIMUS range of explosion-proof products.
SMART SHOOTER, a designer, developer, and manufacturer of innovative fire control systems that significantly increase the accuracy and lethality of small arms, is honoured to announce that the company has been selected by the U.S. Army and endorsed by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) as one of a handful of approved Counter-small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (C-sUAS) solution providers. The designation of SMART SHOOTER as one of only three DoD-approved dismounted/ handheld systems by the Army – the DoD’s Executive Agent for the C-UAS mission area – follows an extended Army-led assessment of more than three dozen competing C-UAS systems. Multi-layer defence solution The Army notes that this assessment identified current systems for future investment based on criteria such as effectiveness, usability, sustainment, and integration. SMART SHOOTER's SMASH family of Fire Control solutions – capable of leveraging targeting data from a wide range of EO, RF and radar sensors – can be integrated onto any assault rifle, as well as combined with other C-UAS systems, to provide an effective multi-layer defence solution suitable for the modern battlefield. SMASH enables the creation of a micro-tactical network between deployed SMASH units Bringing precision-missile targeting algorithms and advanced electro-optical processing capabilities into standard infantry, SMASH enables the creation of a micro-tactical network between deployed SMASH units, allowing the entire platoon to be smart, precise, and connected. With a unique ‘One Shot – One Hit’ capability, SMART SHOOTER's Fire Control technology allows the operator to quickly and effectively neutralise any ground or airborne, manned or unmanned threat through automatic detection, tracking, and effective engagement. Gathering critical tactical intelligence Michal Mor, SMART SHOOTER CEO noted: "In recent years, drones and UAS have become a persistent threat over the battlefield, enabling opposing forces to gather critical tactical intelligence and even make direct attacks. The SMASH family of Fire Control Solutions offers precise, swift, and simple hard-kill elimination of this threat. We are thrilled that the DoD has down-selected and designated SMART SHOOTER's exclusive technology for C-UAS application across the U.S.” “Armed Forces, and see it as validation of the operational value that our solutions provide. The selection is a result of SMART SHOOTER's ongoing work with the Countering Terrorism Tactical Support Office (CTTSO), during which our technology was integrated with radar solutions to provide the warfighter with an unrivalled detection and hit system."
BIRD Aerosystems, the developer of Airborne Missile Protection Systems (AMPS) and Airborne Surveillance, Information, and Observation (ASIO) solutions, has completed the delivery of its AMPS system, including the AeroShield POD and MACS sensor, to a VIP customer in Africa. The system will protect the presidential Boeing 737 aircraft during its international flights around the world. Uniquely designed to protect VIP Aircraft, BIRD’s AMPS is already in operational use by several different customers in Africa, protecting of Head of State aircraft and helicopters. AeroShield POD is an all-in-one integrated solution that supports the installation of BIRD’s Airborne Missile Protection Systems (AMPS) on VIP wide-body aircraft. Integrating the AMPS system which includes Missile Launch Detection Sensors (MILDS), Missile Approach Confirmation Sensor (MACS), Flare Dispensers and an inertial measurement unit (IMU), BIRD’s AeroShield POD is easily installed, provides Optimum platform protection with minimal interference to the aircraft, and can be easily transferred between different aircraft. Confirmation of suspected incoming missile threats The AeroShield POD that has been delivered under the current contract includes BIRD’s patented Missile Approach Confirmation Sensor (MACS) sensor, which performs a unique confirmation of suspected incoming missile threats detected by the main electro-optical passive sensors, and practically eliminates any False Alarms. Upon receiving a pre-alarm warning from the electro-optical sensors, MACS slews to the direction of the incoming threat and verifies the threat’s validity. Concurrently, MACS also collects relevant information on the target (velocity and distance) and calculates its time-to-impact, enabling the effective countermeasure response to the incoming missile. MACS ensures that only real missiles will be declared by the system and reacted upon. Ronen Factor, Co-Chief Executive Officer and Founder at BIRD Aerosystems: "We are thrilled to complete another successful delivery of BIRD's AMPS to a customer in Africa. This delivery, which was completed as planned despite the ongoing international Coronavirus crisis, follows previous deliveries and installations of BIRD's AMPS and AeroShield POD on different military and civilian aircraft around the world. Small and lightweight, BIRD's AeroShield POD is ideal for wide-body aircrafts such as the B737, and provides optimum platform protection against MANPADS with minimal interference to the aircraft. Integrating BIRD's MACS sensor, the system ensures zero false alarms".
According to the reports of not-for-profit organisation Gun Violence Archive, the year 2018 has seen 323 mass shooting incidents as of November 28 in the United States. This number is 346 for the year 2017 and 382 for 2016 (more statistics are available here), with “mass shooting” defined as cases where four or more people are shot or killed in the same time period and location. While definitions of mass shooting vary with organisations in the US, the count of over 300 incidents per year, or about once per day on average, is simply alarming. It raises public safety concerns, ignites debates and protests, which in turn lead to public unrest and potentially more violence, and increases costs for governments from the regional to federal level. Most importantly, the loss of lives demands not only improvement in post-incident handling and investigation, but also new prevention technologies. Gunshot detection solutions AI weapon detection offers a more efficient alternative to prevent active shooting There are several gunshot detection solutions in the security market, commonly used by law enforcement agencies to detect and locate gun fires. These systems function based on acoustic recordings and analyses and often in combination with signals detected by sensors of the optical flash and shockwave when a gun is fired. However, gunshot detection by nature dictates that the law enforcement can only react to a shooting incident that has occurred. With fast action, law enforcement can prevent the incident from escalating, but lives that are lost cannot be recovered. With the development of artificial intelligence in object recognition, AI weapon detection offers a more efficient alternative to prevent active shooting: AI can visually detect guns based on their shapes before they are fired. The AI is trained to recognise firearms in different shapes, sizes, colours, and at different angles in videos, so that the AI weapon detector can be deployed with existing cameras systems, analyse the video feeds, and instantly notify security staff when a gun is spotted. Comparison of the advantages for law enforcement and public security agencies Legacy gunshot detection using sensors AI weapon detection Reactive measure: detect after guns have been fired Proactive measure: detect before guns are fired Time to action: within 1 second Time to action: within 1 second Unable to provide visual data about shooter(s) Can provide data about shooter(s) based on the camera recording: clothing, luggage (backpack, handbag, etc.), facial features, vehicle Unable to track the location of the shooter(s) before and after shooting because of the lack of sound Can track the shooter(s) using AI Person & Vehicle Tracking, AI Face Recognition, and AI License Plate Recognition False detection caused by similar sound such as fireworks and cars backfiring Minimal to no false detection, as AI can distinguish different types of handguns and rifles from normal objects (umbrella, cellphone, etc.) Require physical deployment of gunshot detection sensors Can be used with existing camera systems, do not require special hardware Complicated to deploy, require highly trained professional Easy to deploy as an add-on to existing video surveillance system - Can integrate with gun-shot detection to create a “double knock” audio and video active shooter alert system Gun-shot detection advantages In addition to advantages for law enforcement and public security agencies, this type of visual-based pre-incident detector has three-fold advantages for the public: Save lives by spotting the shooter before the shooting event. Minimise the chaos entailing an incident: panic and chaos caused by a shooting incident often adds to injury, as people run, fall, trample on others… With an AI weapon detector, when a gun is spotted, the system sends an alert to security staff, who can quickly control the situation in an organised manner and apprehend the intending shooter. Can be added as a SaaS (Security as a Service) component to small business and home surveillance systems, e.g., intrusion detection alerts (home invasion incidents with firearms number over 2500 per year nationwide). For a complete active shooter detection system, video-based AI detector can operate in conjunction with gunshot detectors for enhanced security. Traditional X-ray based weapon detection or metal detection entrance systems are complicated and expensive; with AI video technology, active shooter detection system can be cost-effective, and after all, what price tag can one put on a life? Written by Paul Sun and Mai Truong, IronYun
It amazes me how in a few short years security systems have gone from simple, dumb cameras witnessing events to intelligent eyes, ears, speech and touch solutions that boost situational awareness far beyond human capabilities. It seems the only senses missing from the equation now are smell and taste. And who knows, someone might be working on those in a lab somewhere right now. But what’s really fascinating to me is how the Internet of Things (IoT) has opened a world of possibilities for transforming security technology into something new yet again. With IoT we’re able to push and pull nuggets of intelligence from sources we never considered before: environmental sensors, pressure plates, door lock timers and much more. It’s helped us break through the constraining mindset that security systems are strictly single-purpose. With interconnectivity at the core, we’re starting to imagine myriad ways to apply these tools to challenges outside the realm of security. Here are just a few examples. Flood management assistance Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate remotely As recent hurricanes and floods have shown, water damage can be devastating to a community. That’s why some municipalities are using their city surveillance cameras in conjunction with water sensor to proactively address the problem. Water sensors collect data from multiple sources such as rain gutters, sewer systems and pump stations, in order to monitor fluctuations in water levels and water quality. If an alert triggers, having a network camera in proximity to visually verify the situation helps responders determine the best course of action. For instance, if multiple water detection sensors trigger alerts simultaneously or sequentially over a large area it’s probably due to natural runoff from recent rainfall. But without eyes on the scene, how can you be sure? Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate and identify the cause of a trigger remotely. It might be a fire hydrant spewing water, a water main break or even a chemical spill. With video streaming live to the command center, staff can remotely inspect the area, determine the cause of the trigger and decide whether remediation is required, thus avoiding the expense of dispatching an investigative crew to a non-event. Some municipalities are using their city surveillance cameras in conjunction with water sensor to proactively address the problem Environmental control assistance Data centers house the lifeblood of a business so it’s no wonder why companies work hard to protect them. We’re all familiar with the integration of network cameras with access control systems to visually verify who is actually using the credentials. Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate and identify the cause of a trigger remotely But there’s another aspect to protecting data centers and that’s environment control. Data centers need to maintain optimum humidity and temperature for the racks of electronics. When environmental sensors in the facility detect out-of-norm ranges technicians can remotely command a network camera to zoom in on the gauges and help them determine whether remediation might be necessary. Coupling network cameras with other sensors in the data center can provide visual confirmation of other conditions as well. For instance, every time a data rack door-open-close sensor detects an event it can trigger the camera to pan to the location and stream video to security. Some data centers employ weight sensors at the doorway to weigh personnel and equipment as they enter the room and when they exit to ensure no additional hardware is being taken out of the facility or left inside without permission. Any discrepancy would trigger the camera to zoom in for a close-up of the individual’s face and send a visual alert and ID information to security. Roadway management and parking assistance Network cameras have long played a part in city-wide traffic management. Adding video analytics and integration with network sensors, makes those cameras that much smarter and versatile. They can detect cars driving in bike lanes or driving in the wrong direction and capture license plates of offenders. Their ability to detect anomalous traffic flow patterns can be integrated with car counting sensors, networked electronic road signs and traffic light systems to automatically redirect vehicles to alternate routes. They make great, intelligent parking lot attendants, too. Working in conjunction with weight sensors network cameras can count vehicles coming into and leaving a lot or garage and verify when the facility has reached capacity. License plate recognition and video analytics can be used to ascertain that a vehicle entering a reserved parking space doesn’t match the credentials and vehicle attributes in the database. With the addition of noise sensors and audio analytics, network cameras can improve roadway and parking facility safety by detecting and identifying specific sounds – breaking glass, car alarms, gun shots, and aggressive speech – and triggering a visual alert to first responders. Network cameras can improve roadway and parking facility safety by detecting and identifying specific sounds and triggering a visual alert to first responders Shopper experience assistance In the early days of online shopping, e-tailers designed their sites to replicate the in-store customer experience. In an ironic turn of events, today brick-and-mortar stores are trying to mirror the online shopping experience. To do so, they’re turning their security systems into adjunct sales assistance. With network video and audio system automation they can recognise and acknowledge loyal customers with personal greetings. Retailers are applying people counting video analytics to checkout activity to create rules-based consistency in customer service With heatmapping analytics they can measure how much time a customer spends in a specific department or observe how they walk through the aisles of the store. They can track shopping behaviors such as items looked at that made it into the cart or didn’t, or whether a customer actually checked out or left the merchandise behind. By capturing these shopping patterns and trends retailers can shape a more positive, more profitable customer shopping experience. For instance, integrating video analytics with point of sale systems and RFID sensors on merchandise tags can result in timely alerts to sales associates to recommend additional merchandise. This is a case of emulating how e-tailers let the customer know that other customers who bought X often also purchased items Y and Z. Or to avoid disappointing customers due to stock outages, retailers are linking weight sensors and video analytics to make sure their shelves are well-stocked and if not, quickly alert associates to what items need to be restocked. Capturing business intelligence Retailers are also using video cameras to monitor checkout queues and trigger automated announcements over the public-address system, closed system such as smartphones or other wireless communications devices that checkers are needed rather wait for a person to call for backup. IoT laid the groundwork for network security solutions to seamlessly integrate with other IP-based technologies, sensors and programs They’re applying people counting video analytics to checkout activity to create rules-based consistency in customer service. While retailers will always use their surveillance camera for loss prevention, they’re finding that integrating traditional technology in new ways can yield even bigger returns. Linking network video surveillance, video analytics, network communications system and sensors with point-of-sale systems and customer loyalty databases, retailers are capturing the business intelligence they need to get back in the game and make brick-and-mortar a greater overall experience than online shopping. A natural cross-over technology This trend towards integration has forever changed how organisations view their investment in security technology. The intelligence and versatility of a tool that can see, verify and analyse what’s happening in real-time is spurring users to tap its cross-over potential for a host of other tasks that could benefit from more astute situational awareness – everything from manufacturing and equipment maintenance to logistics, inventory control and beyond. IoT laid the groundwork for network security solutions to seamlessly integrate with other IP-based technologies, sensors and programs. How we capitalise on that connection is only limited by our imagination.
Audio is often overlooked in the security and video surveillance industry. There are some intercom installations where audio plays a key role, but it’s not typically thought about when it comes to security and event management. Audio takes a back seat in many security systems because audio captured from a surveillance camera can have a different impact on the privacy of those being monitored. Audio surveillance is therefore subject to strict laws that vary from state to state. Many states require a clearly posted sign indicating audio recording is taking place in an area before a person enters. Analytic information derived from audio can be a useful tool and when implemented correctly, removes any concerns over privacy or legal compliance. Audio analytics on the edge overcomes legal challenges as it never passes audio outside of the camera Focused responses to events Audio analytics processed in the camera, has been a niche and specialised area for many installers and end users. This could be due to state laws governing audio recording, however, audio analytics on the edge overcomes legal challenges as it never passes audio outside of the camera Processing audio analytics in-camera provides excellent privacy since audio data is analysed internally with a set of algorithms that only compare and assess the audio content. Processing audio analytics on the edge also reduces latency compared with any system that needs to send the raw audio to an on-premises or cloud server for analysis. Audio analytics can quickly pinpoint zones that security staff should focus on, which can dramatically shorten response times to incidents. Audio-derived data also provides a secondary layer of verification that an event is taking place which can help prioritise responses from police and emergency personnel. Having a SoC allows a manufacturer to reserve space for specialised features, and for audio analytics, a database of reference sounds is needed for comparison Microphones and algorithms Many IP-based cameras have small microphones embedded in the housing while some have a jack for connecting external microphones to the camera. Microphones on indoor cameras work well since the housing allows for a small hole to permit sound waves to reach the microphone. Outdoor cameras that are IP66 certified against water and dust ingress will typically have less sensitivity since the microphone is not exposed. In cases like these, an outdoor microphone, strategically placed, can significantly improve outdoor analytic accuracy. There are several companies that make excellent directional microphones for outdoor use, some of which can also combat wind noise. Any high-quality external microphone should easily outperform a camera’s internal microphone in terms of analytic accuracy, so it is worth considering in areas where audio information gathering is deemed most important. In-built audio-video analytics Surveillance cameras with a dedicated SoC (System on Chip) have become available in recent years with in-built video and audio analytics that can detect and classify audio events and send alerts to staff and emergency for sounds such as gunshots, screams, glass breaks and explosions. Having a SoC allows a manufacturer to reserve space for specialised features. For audio analytics, a database of reference sounds is needed for comparison. The camera extracts the characteristics of the audio source collected using the camera's internal or externally connected microphone and calculates its likelihood based on the pre-defined database. If a match is found for a known sound, e.g., gunshot, explosion, glass break, or scream, an event is triggered, and the message is passed to the VMS. If a match is found for a known sound, e.g., gunshot, explosion, glass break, or scream, an event is triggered, and the message is passed to the VMS Configuring a camera for audio analytics Audio detectionThe first job of a well-configured camera or camera/mic pair is to detect sounds of interest while rejecting ancillary sounds and noise below a preset threshold. Each camera must be custom configured for its particular environment to detect audio levels which exceed a user-defined level. Since audio levels are typically greater in abnormal situations, any audio levels exceeding the baseline set levels are detected as being a potential security event. Operators can be notified of any abnormal situations via event signals allowing the operator to take suitable measures. Finding a baseline of background noise and setting an appropriate threshold level is the first step. Installers should be able to enable or disable the noise reduction function and view the results to validate the optimum configuration during setup Noise reductionA simple threshold level may not be adequate enough to reduce false alarms depending on the environment where a camera or microphone is installed. Noise reduction is a feature on cameras that can reduce background noise greater than 55dB-65dB for increased detection accuracy. Installers should be able to enable or disable the noise reduction function and view the results to validate the optimum configuration during setup. With noise reduction enabled, the system analyses the attenuated audio source. As such, the audio source classification performance may be hindered or generate errors, so it is important to use noise reduction technology sparingly. Audio source classificationIt’s important to supply the analytic algorithm with a good audio level and a high signal-to-noise ratio to reduce the chance of generating false alarms under normal circumstances. Installers should experiment with ideal placement for both video as well as audio. While a ceiling corner might seem an ideal location for a camera, it might also cause background audio noise to be artificially amplified. Many cameras provide a graph which visualises audio source levels to allow for the intuitive checking of noise cancellation and detection levels. Analytics take privacy concerns out of the equation and allow installers and end users to use camera audio responsibly Messages and eventsIt’s important to choose a VMS that has correctly integrated the camera’s API (application programming interface) in order to receive comprehensive audio analytic events that include the classification ID (explosion, glass break, gunshot, scream). A standard VMS that only supports generic alarms, may not be able to resolve all of the information. More advanced VMS solutions can identify different messages from the camera. Well configured audio analytics can deliver critical information about a security event, accelerating response times and providing timely details beyond video-only surveillance. Analytics take privacy concerns out of the equation and allow installers and end users to use camera audio responsibly. Hanwha Techwin's audio source classification technology, available in its X Series cameras, features three customisable settings for category, noise cancellation and detection level for optimum performance in a variety of installation environments.
During the Parkland, Florida, school shooting in 2018, the shooter was caught on a security camera pulling his rifle out of a duffle bag in the staircase 15 seconds before discharging the first round. However, the School Resource Officer didn’t enter the building because he wasn’t confident about the situation, and the Coral Springs Police Department had no idea what the shooter even looked like until 7 minutes and 30 seconds after the first round was fired. If the video system had included technology to recognise the gun threat in real time, alerts could have been sent to the security team. An announcement could have been made right away for all students and faculty in Building 12 to barricade their doors, and law enforcement could have responded a lot faster to a real-time feed of timely and accurate information. Automatically recognising gun threats Actuate offers such a technology, which the company says enables existing security cameras to automatically recognise gun threats and notify security in real-time. The technology is centred around a convolutional neural network (CNN) that aims to replicate how a human brain would process information. This neural network is trained to recognise what hands holding a firearm look like from hundreds of thousands of images in a proprietary data set. The technology is centred around a CNN that aims to replicate how a human brain would process information Over time, the system is able to mathematically calculate what a gun threat in a security camera feed looks like with a high degree of accuracy (well over 99% detection accuracy within the first 5 seconds), according to Actuate. “Active shooter situations are often marred by chaos and confusion,” says Sonny Tai, Chief Executive Officer of Actuate. “People are in fight-or-flight response and prioritise immediate survival instead of reaching for their phones and calling 911. When the 911 calls are made, callers often provide delayed, conflicting, and inaccurate information, inhibiting law enforcement’s ability to respond.” Enhances law enforcement response Tai says Actuate helps to clear up that chaos and confusion. He says: “It provides visual intelligence of the location of the shooter, what they look like, what direction they’re heading, and what they’re armed with. This real-time information enhances law enforcement response and enables building occupants to make critical decisions that maximise survivability." AI methods including deep learning enable high levels of accuracy in detecting weapons in real-time camera footage Tai is a Marine Corps veteran and a social entrepreneur who co-founded Actuate with the mission of addressing America’s gun violence epidemic. The start of the company stems from Tai’s upbringing in South Africa, where gun violence rates are some of the highest in the world. Growing up, several of his family friends were personally impacted, resulting in a lifelong passion for the issue of gun violence. In early 2018, Tai interviewed dozens of law enforcement leaders across the country and found that their biggest challenge in gun violence response was the lack of timely and accurate information. Actuate mitigates that challenge and enables both first responders and security staff to respond more rapidly, he says. More than 99% accuracy in detecting weapons Actuate's solution is completely AI-based, says Ben Ziomek, Chief Product Officer. AI methods including deep learning enable high levels of accuracy in detecting weapons in real-time camera footage. “Legacy, non-AI based solutions generally rely on older methods like motion detection, which is not reliable in differentiating between objects such as phones and firearms,” says Ziomek. “Our AI solution lets us achieve more than 99% accuracy in detecting weapons with an exceptionally low false-positive rate.” Ziomek runs engineering, data science, and operations for Actuate. Before joining the firm, he led teams of AI engineers and data scientists at Microsoft, leveraging AI to identify high-potential startups globally. Actuate is a software-only solution that plugs into existing security camera hardware and software, including video management systems (VMS). Existing capabilities of a customer’s VMS does initial, basic analysis and then routes the remaining video to Actuate’s processing units for AI analysis. Alerts can then be sent back however a customer wants, including through a VMS. Actuate can also feed information into a PSIM or command-and-control system if requested by a customer. Equipping customers with AI tools As an early-stage company, Actuate is pursuing customers through multiple routes, including directly to end-users and via security integrators, distributors, and dealers. They are currently deployed at diverse customer sites including schools, office buildings, industrial facilities, and public buildings, says Ziomek. Our current focus for the company is to get our technology into the hands of as many customers as possible “Our current focus for the company is to get our technology into the hands of as many customers as possible,” says Ziomek. “We are working closely with customers across segments and industries to equip them with the tools they need to make their spaces safer. We’re currently working on educating the market on our offerings, as this technology is very new to many security organisations.” There are no privacy or compliance concerns because Actuate stores no customer data until a weapon is detected, and even then the data is not cross-indexed with any sensitive information, says Ziomek.
According to the reports of not-for-profit organisation Gun Violence Archive, the year 2018 saw 323 mass shooting incidents as of November. This number is 346 for the year 2017 and 382 for 2016, with ‘mass shooting’ defined as cases where four or more people are shot or killed in the same time period and location. A variety of gunfire detection solutions and other technology approaches seek to address the problem. ShotSpotter SiteSecure and ShotSpotter SecureCampus provide critical outdoor infrastructure protection against active shooter attacks. SiteSecure delivers critical information such as the number of shots fired, a detailed map of the airport or transportation facility, with the shooting location clearly identified. SiteSecure also provides law enforcement and transportation facility management with real-time information that can be useful to identify and address false alarms and reduce mass panic. Gunfire detection and precise shooter location ShotSpotter SecureCampus is a gunfire detection system designed to provide outdoor coverage at university and school campuses. Designed for college campuses and K-12 schools, SST SecureCampus provides gunfire detection, precise location, and number of shooters to first responders and school personnel, enabling faster response to an incident. Designed for college campuses and K-12 schools, ShotSpotter SecureCampus provides gunfire detection Data capture form to appear here! Gunshot detection can offer tremendous benefits in mitigating active shooting incidents occurring in a public facility or commercial environment. Data shows that active shooter attacks often begin outside a building and then progress indoors. Thus, the first line of defence for security professionals lies outside a facility, in a zone of protection surrounding it or comprising the entire outdoor area of a larger facility of many buildings. Audio solutions for perimeter security Video cameras are effective surveillance tools in the event of a shooting incident, but they are not able to capture everything. Deploying audio solutions can automatically flag incidents not caught on camera, as well as alert central station guards of what surveillance zones need to be closely monitored. Audio analytics solutions for aggression and gunshot detection are some of the best security tools in the security market when it comes to detection, intervention and deterrence. They are the next generation of monitoring; equipping security teams with critical information and enhancing perimeter security. End users can identify high-risk situations in real-time and prevent acts of physical aggression before they happen Aggression detectors are capable of accurately recognising duress in a person’s voice. The software automatically and objectively detects the presence of rising human aggression, anger or fear, and subsequently warns staff by a visual alert or alarm trigger. As a result, end users can identify high-risk situations in real-time and prevent acts of physical aggression before they happen. Artificial intelligence to detect weapons A gunshot detector recognises firearm discharge from various firearms in different settings. Within seconds of a gunshot, the software accurately classifies and triggers an immediate notification through a designated VMS. Security staff can then verify the alert, effectively reducing the reaction time of first responders. With the development of artificial intelligence (AI) in object recognition, AI weapons detection offers an efficient alternative to gunshot detection to prevent active shooting: AI can visually detect guns based on their shapes before they are fired. The AI is trained to recognise firearms in different shapes, sizes, colours, and at different angles in videos, so that the AI weapon detector can be deployed with existing camera systems, analyse the video feeds, and instantly notify security staff when a gun is spotted. Audio analytics, processed inside a video camera, are another approach that can quickly pinpoint zones that security staff should focus on, which can dramatically shorten response times to incidents. Audio-derived data also provides a secondary layer of verification that an event is taking place which can help prioritise responses from police and emergency personnel. Detecting audio levels and alerting operators The first job of a well-configured camera or camera/mic pair is to detect sounds of interest while rejecting ancillary sounds and noise below a preset threshold. Each camera must be custom-configured for its particular environment to detect audio levels which exceed a user-defined level. Since audio levels are typically greater in abnormal situations, any audio levels exceeding the baseline set levels are detected as being a potential security event. Operators can be notified of abnormal situations via event signals allowing the operator to take suitable measures Operators can be notified of any abnormal situations via event signals allowing the operator to take suitable measures. Finding a baseline of background noise and setting an appropriate threshold level is the first step. Well configured audio analytics can deliver critical information about a security event, accelerating response times and providing timely details beyond video-only surveillance. Analytics take privacy concerns out of the equation and allow installers and end users to use camera audio responsibly. Hanwha Techwin's audio source classification technology, available in its X Series cameras, features three customisable settings for category, noise cancellation and detection level for optimum performance in a variety of installation environments.
Gunshot detectors use digital microphones installed on (or in) buildings or along streets that listen for evidence of gunshots, provide near instantaneous notification, triangulate the location of shooters and direction of a shot, detect the type of gun and ultimately aid in catching fleeing suspects and solving crimes. Gunshot detection is just one technology playing a role in the larger trend by city agencies to improve core city services. Cities are turning to what are referred to as ‘smart city’ solutions – new, innovative technologies that improve and maintain a high quality of life and ‘liveability’ for citizens. Several cities in the United States have implemented gunshot detection systems. Identifying and deterring gun violence ShotSpotter, a provider of gunshot detection solutions that help law enforcement officials and security personnel identify, locate and deter gun violence, announced that seven new cities have deployed ShotSpotter technology in their communities. Gunshot detection systems can shorten the response time in an active shooter situation The new cities include Cincinnati, OH; Jacksonville, FL; Louisville, KY; Newburgh, NY; Pittsfield, MA; Syracuse, NY and St. Louis County, MO – joining the more than 90 jurisdictions that rely on ShotSpotter to ensure a fast, accurate response to gunfire incidents. Three existing ShotSpotter cities, New York City, Chicago and Birmingham have also recently expanded their coverage areas. Gunshot detection systems can shorten the response time in an active shooter situation. Early detection should be a primary aim, second only to prevention. Security professionals must be part of both of these areas, working in partnership with relevant administrators, local government, law enforcement, first responders and the community to help prevent and better respond to gun violence. Gunshot localisation solution In addition, active shooter events – large or small – are almost always sudden and unexpected, which places a burden on security personnel to manage these risks without creating a prison-like environment. A gunshot localisation solution can turn a video camera system into a real-time safety system in the event of an active shooter A gunshot localisation solution can turn a video camera system into a real-time safety system in the event of an active shooter. Called ShotPoint, the system is completely automated. Working with a video management system (VMS), it can enable a video image of an active shooter to be provided in seconds based on the location of a gunshot. ShotPoint is a network of sensors which can be mounted on walls, ceilings, streetlight poles or other indoor or outdoor locations. Using a ‘sensor mesh approach’, ShotPoint reliably detects and localises the source of gunfire; ranging from small handguns to high caliber rifles. The system can cover large indoor or outdoor areas such as schools, office buildings, retail centres, campuses, and parks. Accurately provides gunshot location Each sensor has an array of four acoustic channels (microphones) that can locate the source of a gunshot sound, the time of arrival and the time distance of arrival. ‘Hearing’ shots from several vantage points (using multiple sensors) enables the system to take into account the angle and time of the sound, which vary in different environments, thus accurately providing the location of the gunshot. A ‘fusion processor’ box (at the edge) listens to the various sensor nodes and computes the location of the gunshot, relative to a floorplan and/or based on global positioning system (GPS) location. In an outdoor location, additional information may also be inferred, such as the trajectory of the gunshot and/or the calibre of the firearm.
ZeroEyes, the only AI-based platform focused solely on weapons detection, has been selected by the Kenosha Unified School District (KUSD) of Wisconsin to help improve security on its campuses. ZeroEyes proprietary solution ZeroEyes’ proprietary solution will identify visible guns if present and send alerts to school administrators and security personnel within three to five seconds, helping to stop violent threats before they occur. KUSD is the third-largest school district in Wisconsin, with over 21,000 students and 4,200 employees in 23 elementary schools, five middle schools, five high schools and five charter schools. Integration with IP security cameras ZeroEyes currently integrates with KUSD’s IP security cameras to help detect visible weapons and serve as a proactive measure to prevent any violent threats on campus. When ZeroEyes positively detects a weapon, the platform sends a notification to school administrators, school resource officers and local 911 dispatch, ensuring the school can enact security protocols and give first responders real-time information to help prevent active shooting tragedies and save lives. Enhancing staff and students’ security “It’s a grim reality that active shootings happen in schools across the country, and we’ve needed to understand and implement the solutions that can keep our students, staff and visitors safe,” said Kevin Christoun, Maintenance, Environmental and Safety Manager at KUSD. Kevin adds, “At KUSD, we have a multi-layered security approach that includes the most effective and innovative technologies and resources, and ZeroEyes’ platform clearly supports our strategy.” Weapons detection solution ZeroEyes proprietary and comprehensive datasets focus exclusively on weapons detection Founded by a group of former Navy SEALs and military veterans, ZeroEyes proprietary and comprehensive datasets focus exclusively on weapons detection, to actively monitor and detect for visible weapons. ZeroEyes also trains and collaborates with customers and local first responders to conduct extensive pilots before its solution is fully implemented. In the future, KUSD plans to roll out additional installations to remaining schools in the district. Effectively countering active shooting incidents “ZeroEyes was founded upon the realisation that a proactive solution was needed to help keep people safe, with real-time information to adequately address violent threats and prevent mass shooting tragedies,” said Dustin Brooks, Vice President of Education at ZeroEyes. Dustin adds, “KUSD focuses on providing a safe and productive learning environment to its students and faculty, and we’re honoured to provide a 24/7 solution that supports their goals.”
Bird Aerosystems, the developer of Airborne Missile Protection Systems (AMPS) and Airborne Surveillance, Information, and Observation (ASIO) solutions, has won a new contract in Central Europe. Under the contract, Bird Aerosystems will upgrade and improve the AMPS systems which were previously provided to the Czech Air Force. Bird’s AMPS are installed on the Czech Air Force Mi-17 helicopters and successfully and operationally deployed in different dangerous and complicated conflict zones, including Afghanistan. The overall program includes an upgrade to the MILDS UV detection sensors and the MCDU Mission computers provided by Bird Aerosystems as well as provision for future installation of Bird’s MACS (Missile Approach Confirmation Sensor). Air Force protection “We see this as a sign of proof for the operational value that Bird’s AMPS bring to the customer and are honoured that the Czech Air Force chose to conduct an upgrade to the systems it is using for several years, in order to align with the latest developments and ensure optimal protection for its soldiers and personnel. Bird’s AMPS were deployed in various missions, including missions in Afghanistan – where the Czech Air Force was operating as part of the NATO forces,” said Ronen Factor, Co-Chief Executive Officer and Founder at Bird Aerosystems. He added: “We believe that this overall improvement will allow the Czech Air force to keep focusing on important operational missions while knowing that their force is protected.” Protection for military and civilian aircraft Bird Aerosystems’ Airborne Missile Protection System (AMPS) provides 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. AMPS automatically detect, verify, and foil SAM attacks through the effective use of countermeasure decoys (Flares and Chaff) or DIRCM that jam the missile’s IR seeker and protects the aircraft. AMPS is provided as a turn-key solution that includes installation design, installation, integration, certification, and support, and is certified by aircraft manufacturers.
Intelligent LiDAR sensor technology from OPTEX, a globally renowned sensor manufacturer, is helping to protect the Belfast Call Centre premises and employees of a Fortune 500 company. Redscan laser sensor The Redscan laser sensor, which was installed by ZEST Fire & Security, a fire and security systems specialist, was required by the company to increase security in private areas of the facility only accessible to authorised personnel. This area, however, is only separated from the rest of the office space by partition walls which leave a gap between the wall and ceiling. OPTEX LiDAR creates a ‘virtual’ detection area that cannot be seen by the naked eye and that can be easily adjusted to the site requirement using the configuration software. In this instance, the REDSCAN RLS-2020S creates a virtual wall between the top of the partition wall and the ceiling of the building, and monitors movement or objects being thrown from one side to the other. OPTEX LiDAR technology OPTEX LiDARs work by analysing the speed, size and distance of the objects detected OPTEX LiDARs work by analysing the speed, size and distance of the objects detected, meaning they track the objects within the detection area and understand the ratio size/distance of the object. This provides the ability to accurately detect a specific size of object either at a distance or close up. In the event of any movement being detected, a security alarm is raised, and alerts are immediately sent to the 24-hour on-site security team. Masaya Kida, Managing Director of OPTEX EMEA, says “OPTEX’s LiDAR technology delivers the greatest accuracy of detection. We are constantly working to improve our technology to provide the highest quality sensing solutions.” REDSCAN RLS-2020 series Masaya adds, “Thanks to the high sensitivity and high-speed detection of the Redscan LiDAR sensor, it is able to detect a thrown object as small as a USB stick. The exact point of detection can also be mapped and associated with the cameras monitoring this area.” Justin Doherty, Director at Zest Fire & Security, said, “OPTEX provided us with great support and service throughout. The client was very pleased with the speed and simplicity of the installation, and is very happy with the performance of this new solution.” REDSCAN RLS-2020 series provides 95° detection and either 20x20m or 30m radius detection range and PoE connectivity.
Patriot One, developer of the PATSCAN Multi-Sensor Covert Threat Detection platform, is pleased to announce a collaboration partnership with Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC), part of Major League Soccer (MLS), to pilot its PATSCAN platform at Banc of California Stadium. Threat and intrusion detection “We are excited to announce this PATSCAN pilot deployment project with another U.S. major sport franchise,” said Martin Cronin, Patriot One CEO and president, adding “In the New Year, our installation team will begin work with the Los Angeles Football Club and Banc of California Stadium on this important game safety initiative. MLS fans will enjoy an added layer of security while attending their favorite team’s home games in Southern California”. Martin further said, “Our vision is to not only to create a world safe from acts of violence, but also to help save a way of life people have come to expect in their normal everyday lives, and that includes participating in professional sports and entertainment activities with their fellow fans.” PATSCAN Multi-Sensor covert threat detection The PATSCAN Multi-Sensor Covert Threat Detection platform will ship in January 2020 to the security team at LAFC The PATSCAN Multi-Sensor Covert Threat Detection platform will ship in January 2020 to the security team at Los Angeles Football Club, where they will be joined by Banc of California Stadium security and Patriot One implementation engineers to begin the integration and pilot deployment project. Specific location of the Platform’s deployment will not be disclosed. “Customer safety is our number one priority at Banc of California Stadium,” said LAFC Vice President of Information Technology Christian Lau. “We are excited to work with Patriot One to give customers an extra layer of security while attending events at our world-class venue in the heart of Los Angeles.” Stadium security Following the initial pilot deployment of the PATSCAN platform with LAFC at an undisclosed location within Banc of California Stadium, Patriot One will work with the team and stadium management to broaden deployment throughout the complex.
The sensor solutions provider HENSOLDT has delivered the 300th equipment set for the MUltifunctional Self-protection System (MUSS) of the German Army’s new ‘Puma’ infantry fighting vehicle. Thus, deliveries currently amount to 1,500 devices, comprising 1.200 sensor heads and 300 central units. HENSOLDT is under contract to deliver in total 342 MUSS equipment sets by 2020 to primes Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall. Apart from that, HENSOLDT’s Optronics subsidiary provides the ‘Puma’ programme with weapons optronics systems, periscopes and driver sighting systems. Enhanced possibilities for protecting armoured vehicles Electronic protection systems like MUSS are opening up enhanced possibilities for protecting armoured vehicles from attacksMUSS was the Active Protection System (APS) selected for the UK DSTL MEDUSA Programme which was delivered by QinetiQ in the UK and Australia. The MUSS was successfully integrated onto the British Army Challenger 2 MBT by BAEs and the capability extensively trialed by serving British Army personnel during the Op User Trials. “Electronic protection systems like MUSS are opening up enhanced possibilities for protecting armoured vehicles from attacks, as is already the case for aircraft or helicopters,” said Thomas Müller, CEO HENSOLDT. “Compared to conventional solutions, we are able to increase the protection level considerably without adding weight or risking collateral damage around the vehicle.” MUSS drastically reduces the likelihood of a hit by antitank guided missiles or laser-guided ammunition and is the only operational soft-kill active protection system for ground vehicles worldwide. It achieves a level of protection which is not possible for the same total weight with passive armour while avoiding collateral damage. Detects approaching missiles and laser beams The warning sensors detect approaching missiles and laser beams aimed at the vehicleEach MUSS system consists of four warning sensors, a central unit, an infrared jammer head, jammer electronics and a smoke grenade launcher. The warning sensors detect approaching missiles and laser beams aimed at the vehicle. The central unit activates an infrared jammer, which interferes with missiles’ guidance systems, and/or initiates the use of pyrotechnic countermeasures. An active protection system like MUSS defeats threats before they strike a vehicle, by sensing them and providing a ‘soft’ response based on jamming or obscuration of the guidance mechanism with no risk of collateral damages. Moreover, MUSS is a discrete solution, which has no significant influence on the vehicle radiation as it features only passive sensors and an infrared Jammer with short activation time, not detectable either in visible or in thermal image spectrum. Expert for decades in self-protection sensors and systems, HENSOLDT delivers major components for the electronic self-defence systems of platforms in the air, sea and land domain.
There is a saying that ‘Everything is Bigger in Texas’, and the Dallas, Texas police department is no exception. The city of Dallas is ranked in the top 10 cities in the U.S. in terms of population, at 1.2 million people. The Dallas Police Department is the ninth largest municipal police force in the U.S., based on 3,012 sworn officers. It is led by Chief of Police, U. Reneé Hall. The department is located in the Jack Evans Police Headquarters building, which was built in 2003. It is 358,000 square feet, has six floors, is spread over a three-acre site, has a separate 1,200 car parking garage and a two-acre, open parking lot for additional visitor parking. Prior to 2003, the department was housed in the circa 1914 former City Hall Building. Preventing terrorist attack and hazards Police officials worked with a Police Design Consultant to help design the building to resist terrorist attacksThe Jack Evans Police Headquarters building was under construction when 9/11 terrorists flew airplanes into the World Trade Buildings in New York. That event was preceded by the Oklahoma City Murrah Federal Building bombing in April 1995. Therefore, security was a concern in its design. Police officials worked with a Police Design Consultant – McClaren, Wilson, and Lawrie Architects of Phoenix – to help design the building to resist a terrorist attack and isolate potential hazards. The building also needed to control visitor traffic and access. On an average month, there are 5,000 public visitors to the Jack Evans building. In addition, shots fired at police buildings nationally are not uncommon, says Paul M. Schuster, Senior Corporal/Facilities Management for the Dallas Police Department. Ready to anticipate dangerous crimes “For the most part they are random, single shot drive-by shootings. Often, the officers are unaware that the building has been shot at, until they find a bullet hole in the brick or glass. Increasingly, police tend to be a symbol of government and some citizens see that as a visible target to lash out at. Police officers are trained to expect the routine types of calls, such as domestic violence, traffic accidents, and other crimes. Yet they must be flexible to anticipate the non-routine that can be dangerous and change in a heartbeat.” On June 13, 2015, after midnight, a 35-year-old male placed a duffle bag with a remote-controlled bomb to detonate later between cars in the parking lot of the headquarters building. The suspect then began shooting continuously at the lobby windows. Officers responded to the scene, a vehicle chase began, and the incident ended outside the city. Luckily officers in the lobby took cover and were not injured. Conducting building security assessment The assessment included testing various construction materials for bullet resistance to various types of weaponsFollowing that incident, the Dallas Police Department conducted a security assessment of the building and also at seven patrol stations throughout the city. The assessment included testing various construction materials for bullet resistance to various types of weapons. Gensler Architects and Guidepost Solutions, LLC developed the solutions and plans. “Yesterday we were concerned about handguns, today we are worried about rifles, and the idea of terrorism is always present with outright attack or bombs,” Schuster notes. “The police officers and police staff only want a place that is safe and where they can do their good work.” Funding of $1.3 million was approved to upgrade the lobbies of the seven patrol stations to withstand rifle rounds, and $1.9 million to improve headquarters lobby security, and to upgrade an aging security system. Turner Construction Company and Convergint Technologies, LLC conducted the renovations and security technology integration. Challenges in upgrading lobby security Visitors were allowed free entry into the lobby and were only screened in an open area to the side if going to other floorsThe headquarters’ lobby was initially designed as a two-storey glass-walled structure, with an information desk and public records service windows. Visitors were allowed free entry into the lobby and were only screened in an open area to the side if going to other floors. “The challenge in upgrading lobby security was the two-storey lobby entrance glass. The glass was not bullet rated, due to budget constraints. Changing the front of the building to support ballistic rifle-rated glass would have caused extensive time, exposed the inside of the lobby to weather, and would not have solved all of the security issues,” Schuster says. “In addition, there were concerns about keeping an ‘open’ and friendly service concept in mind and ensuring that the lobby would not resemble a ‘fortress’,” Schuster notes. Bullet-rated glass and bullet resistant wall The solution was to keep the existing exterior unchanged and focus on adding a layer of security once a person enters the lobby. Visitors now enter the headquarters and immediately proceed to a side room where security screening is conducted. Once inside the screening room, the visitor has belongings x-rayed, and they walk through a metal detector A new secondary wall with bullet-rated glass and solid bullet resistant wall materials was constructed inside the lobby to channel visitors to the room. Once inside the screening room, which also has bullet resistant walls, the visitor has belongings x-rayed, and they walk through a metal detector. In the event that anyone was to produce a gun and begin shooting, the incident could be contained inside that room. Tourlock 180+90 security revolving door Once a visitor has been cleared, they proceed into the main lobby via a Boon Edam Tourlock 180+90 security revolving door. This automatic, four-wing door is the most advanced, security revolving door in the Boon Edam product range that offers maximum throughput, allowing users to enter and leave the building simultaneously. In the event that a large number of persons try to force their way into the facility, the Tourlock 180+90 will determine that more than one person is trying to enter and will reject the person and lock out any others from entering. Once a visitor is ready to leave the lobby and exit the building, they pass through another Boon Edam Tourlock 180+90 that leads to a vestibule with exterior swinging doors. In the event that someone tries to go back into the lobby from the front vestibule area, without going through the security screening room, the Tourlock security revolving door will reject their entry. Preventing tailgating and piggybacking The Boon Edam security revolving doors accurately prevent both tailgating and piggybackingThe Jack Evans Headquarters security upgrades for the lobby improved security and still kept the best aspects of the lobby design, including the antique police car, and the overhead police helicopter. The Boon Edam security revolving doors accurately prevent both tailgating and piggybacking, and provide the department with maximum security while controlling traffic flow. “While it would be great to have a building totally open to the public and then add security as needed, such is not the world we live in anymore,” Schuster adds. Future security plans include exterior site security upgrades to the patrol stations and the headquarters to include security fencing with card access controls for fleet and employee vehicles at each of the sites.
Round table discussion
The new school year is a good time to reflect on the role of security in protecting our schools. From video to access control to some newer technologies, our Expert Panel Roundtable found plenty to talk about when we asked this week’s question: How does security technology make our schools safer?
A big trade show, such as the upcoming ISC West, has a lot to offer for attendees. How, can attendees maximise the value they get out of ISC West? For advice, we go to our Expert Panel Roundtable, all seasoned veterans of many big trade shows. Specifically, we asked the panel: How can attendees get the most out of a big trade show like ISC West?