The general public doesn’t give much thought to the important role of security officers in creating and promoting safer environments. The low-profile work of security officers is vital to protecting people, places and property. During the pandemic, newer aspects to that role have emerged. Security personnel have been called on to perform diverse tasks such as managing queues at the supermarket, safeguarding testing centres and hospitals, ensuring food deliveries, and supporting police pa...
There are a number of factors that may be contributing to security officers having one of the highest death rates of any occupation, according to a new report commissioned by Corps Security from Perpetuity Research and Consultancy International. The Office for National Statistics published data in May which revealed that security officers have one of the highest death rates from COVID-19 - 45.7 deaths per 100,000 people. The seven issues the research points are as below: Low-paid jobs, proximi...
The early stages of the reopening of the British economy are underway following the Government’s announcement in mid-May that some people could return to work if they were unable to work from home. Workers in manufacturing and construction are among the first to return to the workplace, with other industries on standby. Should the data from the easing of the lockdown allow it, other businesses are gearing up to reopen at the start of July. Security has a pivotal role to play in mitigating...
The legalised marijuana industry is the fastest-growing industry in the U.S. If the trend towards legalisation spreads to all 50 states, marijuana could become larger than the organic food industry. According to data by Ameri Research Inc., the global legal cannabis market was valued at US$ 14.3 billion in 2016 and is forecast to grow US$ 63.5 billion by 2024. The rising demand of marijuana for recreational use and medical use is a key factor driving the growth. Highly regulated cannabis marke...
OM Security has achieved a host of benefits having consolidated its employee scheduling, patrol monitoring and mobile workforce management software requirements into a single system. Since the adoption of SmartTask, the company has gained increased visibility and control over 200 security officers, significantly freeing up management time, reducing operating costs and enhancing service delivery The cloud-based solution has also enabled OM Security to launch a new 24/7 control room, further expa...
Mitie Security, one of UK’s renowned technology-led security business, has become one amongst the first business in the sector to successfully pilot virtual accredited training modules. Mitie is working in partnership with the Security Industry Authority (SIA) and Highfield Qualifications, the licence awarding body, to provide online access to the training course which is required to become a licensed security guard. Previously, candidates were required to attend on-site courses. However,...
To limit the spread of COVID-19, many governments, municipalities and enterprises world-wide are introducing new health and safety measures to ensure that all entrants to public buildings are screened for above average temperatures. In response to these new measures, Pangea, a global supplier of digital identity and security solutions is announcing the integration of thermal imaging technology as part of its biometric access control and incident management solution. The thermal imaging technology implemented by Pangea, was first introduced during the SARS outbreak in Asia in 2002 and enables security personnel to scan a continuous flow of people entering a public space or building. Thermal Imaging Access Control technology is faster and more suitable for the movement of masses of people as it does not require people to stop and queue in line while their temperature is taken. Thermal imaging technology Biometric and Thermal imaging technology initiatives have been implemented as part of South Korea’s response to COVID-19, helping the country to ‘flatten the curve.’ South Korean government ministries have been working together using a ‘Coronvirus Data Hub’ to provide accurate data about those infected by COVID-19, which has helped manage the spread and reduce new incidences of COVID-19. South Korea’s experience shows that “diagnostic capacity at scale is key to epidemic control,” says Raina MacIntyre, an emerging infectious disease scholar at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. Automated thermal imaging technology This technology offers a non-intrusive, non-contact solution for controlling the spread of viral infections “Our Geriatric Hospital serves residents with a high risk of contracting COVID-19,” said Deborah Goldberg, Head Nurse, Beit Hadar Geriatric Medical Centre. “The installation of the Pangea Bio-Thermal Imaging Access Control solution gives us and our residents another solution for protection against the virus in these troublesome times.” For Pangea, a company with over 25 years’ experience in the deployment of complex large-scale digital identity and security projects, the integration of automated thermal imaging technology is an obvious next step. This technology offers a non-intrusive, non-contact solution for controlling the spread of viral infections in large-scale public spaces including office buildings, shopping malls, educational campuses, sports arenas and cultural centres. Security infrastructure solution For the enterprise organisation, Pangea can integrate these digital heat sensors with other corporate digital security mechanisms such as biometric face recognition to create a more robust security infrastructure for corporate facilities. “The outbreak of COVID-19 has changed the world and is expected to have a significant impact on our daily lives, today and in the future,” says Rafi Kaminer, CEO and Founder of Pangea. “We think government and enterprise organisations need to take on a new “social role and responsibility” to keep people safe from potential COVID-19 individuals who may infect others." "In Israel, only Pangea has the expertise and technology to help public and private sector organisations roll out an automated bio-thermal imaging solution as part of our broader safety and security infrastructure solution for any type of facility, at any scale, anywhere in the world.”
Following a reported 50 per cent surge in construction crime rates since the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown, the industry is being urged to tighten security measures to defend sites from opportunistic criminals. Increase in security incidents The Construction Equipment Association (CEA) announced the significant increase in raids on vehicles and sites and theft of plant equipment and tools, which is in stark contrast to overall crime rates, which dropped by up to 40 per cent in March . Even before the COVID-19 crisis, construction site theft was an ongoing problem that blighted the industry, costing an estimated £800 million per year. In a survey carried out by the Chartered Institute of Building, 92% of respondents confirmed they had been affected by theft, with 21% reporting weekly site robberies. Since the pandemic and the initial uncertainty around government guidelines and whether construction should remain open, a spate of sites have entered shutdown, often leaving valuable assets in place. Effective site security Simon Oakley, Operations Director at Biosite Systems, comments, “Establishing effective site security is critical at all times but with the recent increase in incidents of construction-related crime, it is clear that opportunistic criminals are targeting sites in shutdown”. The Biosite CCTV solutions in operation link back to a dedicated control room to offer 24/7 surveillance and protection" He adds, “The construction industry has needed to respond rapidly to advice led by government and industry bodies to ensure sites are safe for operatives, which has meant in many cases sites have been scaled back or entered shutdown much quicker than they would normally be, leaving valuable plant equipment that is a temptation to thieves”. Manned guarding, CCTV and mobile patrols Simon further stated, “It is essential that these assets are removed when possible or protected with adequate security measures, such as manned guarding, mobile patrol units or CCTV, to establish control over the situation and to ensure essential police resources are not being diverted during the COVID-19 relief effort.” Biosite Systems operates a nationwide support network of specially trained and Security Industry Association (SIA) licensed guards, managed by an SIA approved contractor for the construction industry. The Biosite CCTV solutions in operation link back to a dedicated control room to offer 24/7 surveillance and protection.
With recently introduced social distancing measures, Key Workers essential to the running of public and other services across the UK including the NHS and critical infrastructure, have been categorised by Government. The intent is to ensure health and safety for the public at large during the pandemic and efforts to control COVID-19. NSI’s view is clear: approved companies working in security and fire safety deliver every day essential services ranging from a wide variety of guarding services, to fire detection and intruder alarm systems, CCTV systems and the 24/7 remote monitoring of these systems in purpose built and secure Alarm Receiving Centers (ARCs). Alarm response centers Approved companies working in these specialisms go to great lengths to ensure the integrity of their service. It is NSI’s belief that essential staff in their businesses are Key Workers, providing critical maintenance and emergency call-outs to ensure effective security and safety cover. They understand exactly how to balance utilisation of Key Worker status with the demands of social distancing, and so support public safety and the emergency services. NSI considers Key Worker status is appropriate for specialist employees of companies approved by NSI and SSAIB" With regard to the Guarding sector Ian Todd, Chief Executive of the Security Industry Authority on 26 March expressed the view: “roles essential to supporting law and order, with the potential to reduce demand on policing, also meet the critical worker definition. This would include, amongst other areas, the guarding of empty or closed commercial, retail or office premises; the monitoring of similar through CCTV or other remote means; and the provision of alarm response centers including mobile units.” Maintain security and fire systems Richard Jenkins, Chief Executive, NSI comments: “NSI considers Key Worker status is wholly appropriate for specialist employees of companies approved by NSI and SSAIB, many of whom work directly or indirectly in collaboration with Police Forces and Fire and Rescue Services to maintain security and fire systems within public infrastructure, as well as a multitude of commercial and private property throughout the UK.
Allied Universal, globally renowned security and facility services company in North America, is proud to celebrate Women’s History Month, which commemorates and encourages the study, observance and celebration of the vital role of women in American history. Security is one of the fastest-growing professional careers worldwide. Today, more and more security companies are employing women. “Allied Universal celebrates the hard-working women who work for us each and every day at all career levels within the organisation,” said Steve Jones, CEO, Allied Universal. “We employ many women in a wide variety of positions including security professionals, administrative and executive positions.” Honouring women security professionals While security is not traditionally a sector that most women consider to build their careers, the landscape has shifted dramatically. It has been an evolution, rather than a revolution, that has attracted the diverse population of employees who now serve as our country’s security professionals. “Every day, thousands of female security professionals put on their uniforms and ensure the safety and security of countless workplaces, schools, shopping malls, and communities,” says Caress Kennedy, Northeast Region President for Allied Universal. The Committee of 200 (C200) It is important to recognise these women for their distinguished service" She is also associated with many industry associations, including The Committee of 200 (C200) - a prestigious network of top-level women entrepreneurs and corporate innovators, New York Staffing Association, NYPD Law Enforcement Explorers, NYC Workforce Investment Board and serves on St. John's University Homeland Security Academic Program Advisory Board. Caress adds, “It is important to recognise these women for their distinguished service.” Elizabeth Core, a military veteran and Shift Advisor for Allied Universal, decided to join a security company due to the opportunity to share her military knowledge with her team such as discipline, respect and honesty. For most of her 26-year career in the military, Core was stationed at Joint Base Andrews in Washington, DC. The security industry is ever-changing and combines the evolution of technology and physical security, coupled with the opportunity for continual learning and growth. Empowering working women “We are able to not only positively impact our clients, but also our world at large,” said Liz Thomas, Vice President of Sales, Northwest Region, Allied Universal. She adds, “Having the opportunity to work at Allied Universal, who serves so many different vertical markets, has opened the door to connect with diverse groups of people and create incredible relationships and long-term friendships with customers and employees, which is the greatest benefit of all.”
Aiphone, the international manufacturer of intercom and security communication products, introduced its IXG Series IP-based video intercom, a comprehensive solution providing multi-tenant and mixed-use building managers with reliable network communication and entry security along with the convenience of a tenant mobile app. The IXG Series integrates multiple security layers to meet property managers’ needs for a single facility or an entire portfolio of mixed-use properties. The cloud-based IXG Series Mobile App enables tenants to screen visitors and unlock entries using their smartphones from virtually anywhere in the world. The app may be used with or without an individual interior station. Building managers may select to have tenants screen visitors or have all entry requests go directly to a guard station before being transferred to the appropriate suite or apartment. Elevator control adaptor The IXG Series further enhances security with an available elevator control adaptor to ensure visitors access only the floor on which the tenant works or resides. All entrance, tenant and guard stations include touchscreen displays “The IXG Series combines all the feature-rich benefits of an IP-based intercom with the versatility of a multi-tenant solution,” said Brad Kamcheff, Aiphone marketing manager. “With its virtually unlimited station capacity, the IXG Series provides configurations to meet the specific needs of mixed-use property managers and their tenants.” Benefits of IXG Series video intercom All entrance, tenant and guard stations include touchscreen displays and enable onboard event recording with a microSD card. Other features and benefits of the IXG Series video intercom include: Illuminated touchscreen entrance panel for interface and video display Available later in 2020, a physical video guard station Video conferencing between guard stations Confidence that the system is functioning as intended with scheduled or manual health checks of all stations, components and network connections Ease of installation. All stations are Power over Ethernet using standard structured cable (Cat-5/Cat-6) Compatible with future IX Series The IXG Series may be combined with Aiphone’s IX Series 2 peer-to-peer video intercom system with its many door, master and sub stations, adapters and modular emergency towers and wall boxes, to create broader, more powerful solutions for large and enterprise-level applications. The IXG Series is compatible with legacy and future IX Series and IX Series 2 products. Throughout 2020, Aiphone will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in North America by thanking customers, dealers, integrators and employees for providing the opportunity to develop and improve better security and communication solutions.
Key topics and challenges affecting the security systems and guarding sectors were addressed at this year’s NSI-sponsored Thought Leadership Summit, held at the Royal Lancaster London. Delegates from across the industry engaged with a lively, informative and thought provoking programme, organised by the Outstanding Security Performance Awards (OSPAs). A cross-section of security industry end users, service providers, sector organisations and regulatory bodies attended the third annual UK OSPAs Thought Leadership Summit, where an international line-up of speakers provided a variety of valuable insights. They included Inspector Angel Martinez Sendino from the Central Private Security Unit with Madrid Police, who described the pioneering strategy it has adopted to tackle false alarms and the resulting reductions achieved. Real Living Wage Inspector Sendino’s presentation was followed by a panel discussion about the Madrid experience and the lessons that might translate into the UK to beneficial effect. This round-table debate, involving David Mair from the Security Systems Unit at the Metropolitan Police, Ken Meanwell from Secured by Design, David Wilkinson from the BSIA, plus NSI’s Richard Jenkins, was chaired by Professor Martin Gill and prompted informed delegate feedback during a Q&A session. Meanwhile, the merits and implications of paying the Real Living Wage in the security sector were summarised by Sebastian Bachelier from the Living Wage Foundation. He explained how the voluntary Real Living Wage (as distinct from the statutory Minimum Wage for under-25s and the National Living Wage for over-25s) offers benefits to workers and employers alike, in addition to tangible economic contributions when implemented. Underrepresentation of women The SIA welcomed NSI’s forthcoming Code of Practice for the provision of labour in the security and events sector The Summit moved on to hear from Ian Todd, Chief Executive of the Security Industry Authority. His address covered areas including the Approved Contractor Scheme and concerns surrounding the role of labour providers operating outside the ACS’ remit. This involves issues including rogue labour, inadequate screening, poor training and illegal low pay, along with the SIA’s role as a regulator in managing these concerns. The SIA welcomed NSI’s forthcoming Code of Practice (NCP 119) for the provision of labour in the security and events sector. Douglas Barnett from AXA Insurance then provided an insurer’s insight into its experience of guarding contractor practices, drivers behind the race to the bottom and future opportunities. Concluding the event, Charlotte Howell from Perpetuity Research summarised some of the main findings from a recent survey of experiences from women working in physical security and key areas for future industry development, including the significant current underrepresentation of women in the security sector. Help propel the security sector “This Thought Leadership Summit is the first to have been sponsored by NSI and our involvement with this prestigious event was prompted by our drive for continual improvement amongst security providers,” comments NSI Chief Executive Richard Jenkins. “We welcome fresh perspectives that provoke constructive debate about how the industry could develop. The Thought Leadership Summit proved a driving force in moving the debate onwards in a positive and engaging way and covering a range of challenging topics. Recognising new technology, working practices and shared standards can help propel the security sector and raise its profile with buyers, people joining the industry, and in the wider community.”
Public spaces in cities and suburbs are important places for community development and promoting outdoor recreation. These areas may include main streets, parks, promenades, band shells and fields. Such locations are often utilised by public event planners for community activities, including summer festivals, wintertime ice skating rink installations, music concerts and art fairs. As the year drew to a close, holiday and Christmas markets as well as major New Year’s Eve events, presented cities with constant public event security needs. The public nature of these events increases risks of incidents with high-speed vehicles that put attendees in danger. Fortunately, there are three ways for public space managers to prevent casualty-causing collisions and further promote the use of local public areas. Developing an effective action plan When strategising how to react to an alert, think about what time of the year and time of day the event is occurring It is important to have a plan developed before an incident or accident occurs. Warning systems, utilising doppler radar and digital loop technologies, alert guards to abnormal vehicle velocity changes in the surrounding area. Managers of public areas should organise a meeting with public safety authorities and local agencies to discuss what must immediately occur when a high-speed vehicle is approaching a public event. When strategising how to react to an alert, think about what time of the year and time of day the event is occurring. Having such a reaction plan in place combines technology and strategic planning to ensure everyone is on the same page to effectively target a threat and promote overall event safety. Securing public areas Ideally, there will be no need to implement a well-conceived action plan. After all, taking preventive measures to secure public areas where events take place is important to keep people safe from accidental vehicle collisions and intentional attacks. Protect attendees by clearly separating pedestrian and vehicle locations using security devices such as – Barricades Portable barriers Bollards Install guard booths Avoid the risk of vandalism and theft, making sure people are safe when walking back to the cars at night by keeping parking areas illuminated with flood lights. Install guard booths with employees who monitor activity in the parking area and who are prepared to react if an alert is triggered. Furthermore, prevent accidental collisions by clearly marking the parking area with informative warning signs and using barricades to direct traffic. These three tips can be used by public area managers to promote security at the next community event. Additionally, the technologies used to secure an event can also be used as infrastructure for year-round security. Installing gates that shut when the public space is closed or using aesthetically pleasing bollards are steps any public area manager can take to promote community safety.
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
From satellite imagery to street views to indoor mapping, technology has disrupted our past world. This has left us dependent upon new ways to visualise large spaces. This new world has brought many benefits and risks. But what does that mean for the security professional or facility manager today and what technologies can be used to secure buildings and improve facility operations? A brief history of 3D technology Starting May 5, 2007 (inception 2001), Google rolled out Google Street View to augment Google Maps and Google Earth; documenting some of the most remote places on earth using a mix of sensors (Lidar/GSP/Radar/Imagery). The mission to map the world moved indoors May 2011 with Google Business Photos mapping indoor spaces with low cost 360° cameras under the Trusted Photographer program. In the earlier days, 3D scanning required a high level of specialisation, expensive hardware and unavailable computing power With the growth of 3D laser scanning from 2007 onwards, the professional world embraced scanning as effective method to create digitised building information modelling (BIM), growing fast since 2007. BIM from scanning brought tremendous control, time and cost savings through the design and construction process, where As-Built documentation offered an incredible way to manage large existing facilities while reducing costly site visits. In the earlier days, 3D scanning required a high level of specialisation, expensive hardware, unavailable computing power and knowledge of architectural software. Innovation during the past 8 year, have driven ease of use and lower pricing to encourage market adoption. Major investments in UAVs in 2014 and the commercial emergence of 360° photography began a new wave of adoption. While 3D scanners still range from $20K – $100K USD, UAVs can be purchased for under $1K USD and 360° cameras for as low as $100. UAVs and 360° cameras also offer a way to document large spaces in a fraction of the time of terrestrial laser scanners with very little technical knowledge. Access to building plans, satellite imagery, Google Street View, indoor virtual tours and aerial drone reconnaissance prove effective tools to bad actors The result over the past 10+ years of technology advancement has been a faster, lower cost, more accessible way to create virtual spaces. However, the technology advances carry a major risk of misuse by bad actors at the same time. What was once reserved to military personal is now available publicly. Access to building plans, satellite imagery, Google Street View, indoor virtual tours and aerial drone reconnaissance prove effective tools to bad actors. Al Qaeda terror threats using Google Maps, 2007 UK troops hit by terrorists in Basra, 2008 Mumbai India attacks, 2016 Pakistan Pathankot airbase attacks, ISIS attacks in Syria using UAVs, well-planned US school shootings and high casualty attacks show evidence that bad actors frequently leverage these mapping technologies to plan their attacks. The weaponization of UAVs is of particular concern to the Department of Homeland Security: "We continue to face one of the most challenging threat environments since 9/11, as foreign terrorist organisations exploit the internet to inspire, enable or direct individuals already here in the homeland to commit terrorist acts." Example comparison of reality capture on the left of BIM on the right. A $250 USD 360° camera was used for the capture in VisualPlan.net software What does this mean for the security or facility manager today? An often overlooked, but critical vulnerability to security and facility managers is relying on inaccurate drawing. Most facilities managers today work with outdated 2D plan diagrams or old blueprints which are difficult to update and share.Critical vulnerability to security and facility managers is relying on inaccurate drawing Renovations, design changes and office layout changes leave facility managers with the wrong information, and even worse is that the wrong information is shared with outside consultants who plan major projects around outdated or wrong plans. This leads to costly mistakes and increased timelines on facility projects. Example benefits of BIM There could be evidence of a suspect water value leak which using BIM could be located and then identified in the model without physical inspection; listing a part number, model, size and manufacture. Identification of vulnerabilities can dramatically help during a building emergency. First Responders rely on facilities managers to keep them updated on building plans and they must have immediate access to important building information in the event of a critical incident. Exits and entrances, suppression equipment, access control, ventilation systems, gas and explosives, hazmat, water systems, survival equipment and many other details must be at their fingertips. In an emergency situation this can be a matter of life or death. Example benefit of reality capture First Responders rely on facilities managers to keep them updated on building plans A simple 360° walk-through can help first responders with incident preparedness if shared by the facility manager. Police, fire and EMS can visually walk the building, locating all critical features they will need knowledge of in an emergency without ever visiting the building. You don’t require construction accuracy for this type of visual sharing. This is a solution and service we offer as a company today. Reality capture is rapidly becoming the benchmark for facility documentation and the basis from which a security plan can be built. Given the appropriate software, plans can be easily updated and shared. They can be used for design and implementation of equipment, training of personnel and virtual audits of systems or security assessments by outside professionals. Our brains process visual information thousands of times faster than text. Not only that, we are much more likely to remember it once we do see it. Reality capture can help reduce the need for physical inspections, walk-throughs and vendor site-visits but more importantly, it provides a way to visually communicate far more effectively and accurately than before. But be careful with this information. You must prevent critical information falling into the hands of bad actors. You must watch out for bad actors attempting to use reality capture as a threat, especially photo/video/drones or digital information and plans that are posted publicly. Have a security protocol to prevent and confront individuals taking photos or video on property or flying suspect drones near your facility and report to the authorities. Require authorisation before capturing building information and understand what the information will be used for and by who.There are a number of technologies to combat nefarious use of UAVs today Nefarious use of UAVs There are a number of technologies to combat nefarious use of UAVs today, such as radio frequency blockers and jammers, drone guns to down UAVs, detection or monitoring systems. Other biometrics technologies like facial recognition are being employed to counter the risk from UAVs by targeting the potential operators. UAVs are being used to spy and monitor for corporate espionage and stealing intellectual property. They are also used for monitoring security patrols for the purpose of burglary. UAVs have been used for transport and delivery of dangerous goods, delivering weapons and contraband and have the ability to be weaponised to carry a payload.Investigating reality capture to help with accurate planning and visualisation of facilities is well worth the time The Federal Aviation Administration has prevented UAV flights over large event stadiums, prisons and coast guard bases based on the risks they could potentially pose, but waivers do exist. Be aware that it is illegal today to use most of these technologies and downing a UAV, if you are not Department of Justice or Homeland Security, could carry hefty penalties. Facility managers must have a way to survey and monitor their buildings for threats and report suspicious UAV behaviours immediately to authorities. At the same time, it’s critical to identify various potential risks to your wider team to ensure awareness and reporting is handled effectively. Having a procedure on how identify and report is important. Investigating reality capture to help with accurate planning and visualisation of facilities is well worth the time. It can help better secure your facilities while increasing efficiencies of building operations. Reality capture can also help collaboration with first responders and outside professionals without ever having to step a foot in the door. But secure your data and have a plan for bad actors who will try to use the same technologies for nefarious goals.
School shootings, especially in the United States, present an ongoing tragedy and a challenge to the security industry. We like to think we have solutions that can help, if not “solve”, the problem: but how effective are they at the end of the day? The sad answer – even after dozens of school shootings and even in the wrenching aftermath of the latest one – is that we don’t know. There is a gaping lack of knowledge and research when it comes to measuring the effectiveness of preventative measures as they relate to school shootings. A 2016 study by the Rand Corp. points to the problem: Lack of data and research on what works and what doesn’t. “Despite growth in the school safety-technology sector, rigorous research about the effectiveness of these technologies is virtually non-existent,” according to Rand (as reported in Education Week). “The field is in desperate need of more evidence on what works, and schools want this information presented to them in vetted, digestible ways to help them with procurement.” Role of early detection Early detection of weapons in the school environment can minimise the impact of school violence Early detection of weapons – and their users – in the school environment can minimise the impact of school violence. For example, ZeroEyes is an intelligent video analytics platform, powered by artificial intelligence (AI), to detect weapons and recognise faces in real time. The company’s goal is to provide school administrators and decision-makers with a simple, intuitive situational awareness platform that gives first responders a tactical advantage. Data capture form to appear here! An emerging tool in campus security is audio analytics: Aggression and gunshot detection are some of the best security tools in the campus security market when it comes to detection, intervention and deterrence. 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. 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. Emergency response technology CLASS [Crisis Lockdown Alert Status System] by Sielox is an incident and crisis management solution Emergency response in also important, and technology can play a role. For example, physical security company Sielox has adapted the idea of using a colour scheme to characterise an emergency situation into its electronic security system. CLASS [Crisis Lockdown Alert Status System] by Sielox is an incident and crisis management solution that uses a variety of colours to designate the emergency conditions in various parts of a school building – red to alert to a crisis condition and green to designate "safe/secure". Colours are displayed on a schematic of the building, and new colours have been added, too, such as yellow for “unaccounted individual", orange for “disturbance” and blue to designate a medical emergency. CLASS offers five different alert levels and eight different colours that are configurable to denote a wide variety of emergency or non-emergency situations (such as maintenance or homeroom check-in status). Emergency response in also important, and technology can play a role Non-lethal methods to suppress active shooters in schools are also emerging. For example, one remotely deployed threat suppression system drenches a perpetrator with a repulsive water-based solution, thus impairing their ability to enact violence. The solution irritates eyes, throat, lungs and skin, but does not cause permanent injury. Cleanup is easy using water and detergent. The solution is manually deployed in predetermined zones, which limits the affected areas in a building. Touch-screen control enables rapid deployment, which can also be integrated with Threat Alert buttons and/or gunshot detection. ShotSpotter gunfire tracking Gun violence is also an issue in the neighborhoods where schools are located Beyond the schools themselves, gun violence is an issue in the neighborhoods where schools are located. ShotSpotter, Inc. released data tracking gunfire in and around public K-12 school communities within ShotSpotter coverage areas during 2017. The data revealed more than 4,800 gunfire incidents occurred during school hours within a one-half mile radius of public K-12 schools and within the coverage area. There are 2,320 public K-12 schools and over 1,079,700 students within ShotSpotter coverage areas in 77 cities in the United States. The ShotSpotter study tracked and analysed data on the number of gunfire incidents that occurred at or near those schools across the time period from 7 a.m. – 5 p.m. local time, Monday – Friday, including summer and holidays. On a positive note, awareness of high-profile school violence has prompted action. Schools and universities are most certainly safer than ever before. High-profile incidents, especially active shooters tragedies, have increased collective security awareness. Heightened awareness leads to safer practices, improved emergency preparedness and security technology innovations. Collaborative efforts that involve stakeholder groups, such as administrators, responders and students, are the key to a safer learning environment. Investing in technology advances in 1) access control (e.g. electronic access, visitor management) and 2) communications (e.g. duress capabilities, mass notification) is the most effective way to protect people.
As a security service provider with a rich history in manguarding, Allied Universal is launching a new technology platform to increase productivity and accountability of security officers and to transform guard service operations from an ‘observe and report’ mission to a ‘detect and respond’ function. Mark Mullison, Allied Universal’s Chief Information Officer (CIO), says the new Heliaus platform also uses artificial intelligence (AI) to analyse data, predict outcomes, and prescribe optimum responses. The platform includes a smart phone app that guides security officers to ensure post orders are followed and provides a ‘virtual’ coach or supervisor to guide security officers throughout the day. “The walls between technology and people need to come down in the future,” says Mullison. “We need an ecosystem in which people and technology can cooperate well and respond to threats and drive outcomes.” Real-time situational awareness Technology plays an increasing role in security and safety, but it will never replace humans"Heliaus is a step in that direction. It has two components – the mobile app used by security officers; and a cloud-based portal, like a command and control centre that compiles information from the app and other inputs and performs AI analysis of data. Heliaus is an add-on for Allied Universal customers and is offered for a per-device subscription fee of $199 per month. A customer company’s managers can also access the portal for data visualisation tools and real-time situational awareness, or to input data such as ‘approving’ an incident report or action. “Technology plays an increasing role in security and safety, but it will never replace humans,” says Mullison. “It will augment and enhance the workflow and make people more effective.” “We are focussing on delivering better outcomes for safety and security,” he adds. “The impacts are as broad and diverse as the clients we serve.” Customisation of forms enables the system to collect and use any information that was previously collected on paper. Monitoring and Response Center (MaRC) A system is effective only to the extent that it is used, and Allied Universal has engineered the user experience to make the mobile app easy – almost fun – to use, says Mullison. Elements of ‘gamification’ drive greater user adoption. “It is designed to support the work [security officers] do and make information collection a by-product of people doing their jobs.” The system brings together rich data, AI, location-aware workflow automation, and friendly user experience design Effective AI depends on data, and Heliaus pulls data from Allied Universal’s Monitoring and Response Center (MaRC), where a cloud server integrates the company’s managed security services, including access control, video surveillance and video analytics. It also incorporates current weather information and forecasts, and information specific to the industry segment. Additional data is generated as officers enter data through the mobile app. The system brings together rich data, AI, location-aware workflow automation, and friendly user experience design. It provides insight into the drivers of risk, makes recommendations about how to reduce incidents, and, through dynamic workflow automation, ensures that those recommendations are implemented. Location awareness is a combination of the global positioning system (GPS), Bluetooth beacons, and near-field communication (NFC) tags. Improves the accuracy of responses AI understands the data and applies reasoning capabilities to predict an outcome and prescribe a response“Information is organised to facilitate AI analysis. If you have the right knowledge representation then problem-solving is easy,” says Mullison, echoing a common principle of artificial intelligence. AI works to analyse data and make predictions and recommendations to guide responses by security personnel. AI understands the data and applies reasoning capabilities to predict an outcome and prescribe a response. The AI system also learns and improves the accuracy of responses with more data and over time. Responses come much faster than older ‘trial and error’ models of analysis. Another element of Heliaus is a ‘robust workflow engine’ that ensures recommendations are carried out, either by a security professional on site or by the client. Mullison says implementation of the system can result in a 20% reduction of security and safety incidents. Multiple applications of Heliaus Heliaus is already being used by some Allied Universal customers. For example, a major Hollywood production studio is using it to identify and address workplace hazards such as stray electrical cords, dripping water hoses, etc., across a 50-acre area. In the logistics sector, Heliaus is being used to facilitate checking delivery vehicles in and out of a truckyard A manufacturer created a custom compliance application using the platform to track more than 140 unique incident types, such as monitoring elevated temperature in a truck trailer or drivers without proper identification. In the logistics sector, Heliaus is being used to facilitate checking delivery vehicles in and out of a truckyard. The flexibility of the platform can enable expansion to incorporate other technologies in the future, too. For example, sources of data for the system could include robots, drones or various Internet of Things (IoT) sensors; or workflow engines could be used to dispatch a robot or drone to handle a situation (rather than a human).
School shootings continue, as does a search for answers. What solutions are there to prevent school shootings and/or to improve the response (and thus minimise the death toll)? In the physical security industry, we like to think we have solutions that can help, if not “solve”, the problem, but realistically speaking, how effective are they at the end of the day? We like to think we have solutions that can help, if not “solve”, the problem: but how effective are they at the end of the day? The sad answer – even after dozens of school shootings and even in the wrenching aftermath of the latest one – is that we don’t know. There is a gaping lack of knowledge and research when it comes to measuring the effectiveness of preventative measures as they relate to school shootings. Scarce resources on preventative measures The dearth of knowledge on the subject leaves schools at risk of spending scarce resources on measures that don’t have any real impact, or worse, that have a negative effect on education environments. The natural impulse following a school shooting is to do something – anything – to prevent the tragedy from happening again at any school, but especially at my school. But how is money best spent?Successful businesses are a good thing, but not at the expense of misspending education resources on solutions that don’t solve anything Congress has passed the Stop School Violence Act of 2018 to provide $50 million per year to develop programs to train students, teachers and law enforcement to prevent violence, and to create anonymous reporting systems, such as hot lines, for school violence threats. The bill authorises another $25 million for improvements to school’s physical security infrastructures. Congress also provides $1.1 billion in Title IV block grants, which districts can use to pay for diverse needs such as security systems. Several states are providing additional funding for physical safety measures and campus police, and local districts are also stretching their budgets to address security concerns. But is that money being targeted to measures that will help the situation? What is the role of technology in preventing school violence, and are we as an industry at risk of over-selling our preventative capabilities and diverting money from other measures that might have more impact? Successful businesses are a good thing, but not at the expense of misspending education resources on solutions that don’t solve anything. More metal detectors, armed guards and police officers could cause anxiety in some students and even interfere with the learning process Studies on school safety and protection Researchers, advocates and educators gathered this fall at American University to consider the need for better research to inform decision-making on safety, reported Education Week.The field is in desperate need of more evidence on what works, and schools want this information presented to them" A 2016 study by the Rand Corp. points to the problem: Lack of data and research on what works and what doesn’t. “Despite growth in the school safety-technology sector, rigorous research about the effectiveness of these technologies is virtually non-existent,” according to Rand. “The field is in desperate need of more evidence on what works, and schools want this information presented to them in vetted, digestible ways to help them with procurement.” Jeremy Finn, a professor of education at the University of Buffalo, has pointed out the difficulty of assessing the effectiveness of measures designed to deter events that likely won’t occur anyway. “How do you know when you have deterred a school shooting?” he asks. “It didn’t happen.” The effects on our students Might technologies aimed at making schools more secure have an adverse effect on the learning environment? More metal detectors, armed guards and police officers could cause anxiety in some students and even interfere with the learning process. The physical security industry should freely acknowledge that the technologies we offer are only part of the solution to school violence Do security measures aimed at preventing active shooting incidents absorb resources that might better be used to address a more general and/or likely security threat such as vandalism or student discipline? Theoretically, security measures in general should help to prevent the probability of an active shooter at the same time they are addressing a wider range of concerns and threats. But do they? At the very least, we in the physical security market should be aware, and should freely acknowledge, that the technologies we offer are only part of the solution to school violence. Schools should take the broadest possible approach to the range of security challenges, and technology should be one tool among many. Furthermore, better data to measure what works is sorely needed to illuminate the best path forward.
Kingfisher Sec, a West London-based security specialist, has adopted SmartTask to support the rapid growth of the business by streamlining and automating critical business processes. The company will use the cloud-based software to handle employee scheduling, proof of attendance and operational reporting across a team of up to 50 security guards. As a result, Kingfisher Sec has already reduced administration by around 17.5 hours a month, with further improvements expected moving forward. “We wanted an employee scheduling and workforce that would mitigate any growing pains we experience as the business continues to expand as well as helping us achieve our aim of creating a paperless operation,” explains Filipi Nascimento, Operations Manager at Kingfisher Sec. “SmartTask is allowing us to automate many of our manual processes in a phased approach to maximise benefit realisation, without losing focus on our core operational priorities.” Electronic communication tool SmartTask was selected following a tender process based on its feature-rich and easy-to-use functionality. Kingfisher Sec is using the software to provide a simple tool to the company’s team of security guards, via a smartphone app, so they can simply book on and off shifts, accept schedules and book holidays. Meanwhile, the advanced rostering system allows Kingfisher Sec to quickly create monthly work plans and communicate them direct to staff for electronic confirmation. Kingfisher Sec is also looking to replace a paper-based DOB system at around 40 customer sites with SmartTask’s Daily Occurrence Log (DOL). The electronic communication tool will enable security guards to quickly create entries and upload details regarding any on-site occurrence, providing online visibility of all incident data and supporting photo evidence. Capturing accurate data The software is capturing accurate data about the performance of our team and the business" As well as reducing the administrative burden, both on-site and centrally, the DOL will also remove the cost of providing, distributing and archiving a paper-based log. “SmartTask is streamlining our business and operational procedures, so we can save both time and money while providing a better service to our customers. The software is capturing accurate data about the performance of our team and the business, which we simply did not have access to previously. This is allowing us to better manage staff, eliminate human error and quickly respond to any issues,” adds Nascimento. Cloud-based software Paul Ridden, CEO of SmartTask commented: “Our cloud-based software is a highly-advanced and easy-to-use guard management, monitoring and reporting solution that typically reduces costs and improves efficiency by 30 per cent. As a result, a growing range of security businesses are using SmartTask to plan, manage, conduct and measure workforce activities more effectively.”
There are a handful of amazing things that set San Francisco apart from other global cities. Notably, there is the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, Fisherman’s Wharf and Chinatown, the Twin Peaks overlooking the city skyline, San Francisco Bay, and The Moscone Centre. Just how does a convention centre fit into the list of places to see in beautiful San Francisco? It is the largest convention and exhibition complex in San Francisco, California. It includes three main halls spread out across three blocks and 87 acres in the prime South of Market neighborhood. The convention centre originally opened in 1981 and has gone through several renovations. It is currently upgrading its security system to reflect a modern, state-of-the-art security solution. Securing SMG/Moscone Centre Security at the SMG/Moscone Centre is handled similar to the security at a Tier 1 airport. However, clients who use the facility are required to provide their own inside security. When the doors of the convention Centre are open to the public, it plays host to people who want to come in and look around. Our new security system will provide analytics, and the ability to look at the images in real time" “We are responsible for facility security inside and on the perimeter outside. This is considered a soft target, so we do everything possible to harden the security,” said Damion Ellis, Director of Security at the SMG/Moscone Centre. Damion adds, “The time is right for us to take out the old security system, including the old analog camera system. Our new security system will provide analytics, and the ability to look at the images in real time.” IP cameras installed for wide surveillance Like any major metropolitan area, the San Francisco metropolitan region has its own issues that have to be dealt with that aren’t pleasant. This includes keeping track of the homeless population and what they are doing. Damion Ellis further said, “We are able to place the new IP cameras in places where the homeless population congregates on the outside, in dark corners of the facility.” CompleteView VMS video platform The Moscone Centre complex consists of three main halls. Moscone South is located to the south of Howard Street and is three-storey tall. It opened in 2017, replacing the original Moscone Centre building that opened in 1981. A Keith Haring sculpture stands outside the hall at the corner of 5th and Howard streets. Moscone North is located to the north of Howard Street, and Moscone West is a three-level exhibition hall located across 4th Street from Moscone North. Integration with ProWatch access control platform “One of the most compelling reasons Moscone deployed CompleteView video platform was the integration with Honeywell’s ProWatch access control platform, as well as newly designed multi-sensor cameras,” said Salient’s Regional Sales Manager in the Bay Area, Cindy Doyle. Cindy adds, “The ease of use and intuitive software allowed the guard staff to use maps in the system to identify where triggered events took place for guard dispatch.” Monitoring door alarms Prowatch access control platform is currently being used to monitor door alarms throughout the property Prowatch access control platform is currently being used to monitor door alarms throughout the property and triggering video call-up and/or alarm video event when there is a forced or held open door. In order to keep track of outside foot traffic and provide interior and exterior security, an analytics option was foremost on everyone’s mind, and integrator Microbiz Security Co., dove in with an initial site survey to determine the best course of action. Microbiz has partnered with the SMG/Moscone Centre for several years. Video analytics solution “Our goal was to take a look at what it would take to secure the facility, but to do it properly,” said Todd Chritton, President of Microbiz Security. “The integrator had some suggestions in terms of offering better security coverage in some areas,” said Marco Escobar, Vice President of Operations at Microbiz Security, adding “What they knew was three buildings needed to update from its current 2002 technology, and upgrade to 2018 technology. It also was beneficial to the integrator having worked on site for several years and also having worked with Ellis during his tenure with the Hilton Hotel chain.” Multi-sensor and multi-megapixel IP cameras Marco Escober further stated, “We’ve been a long-time vendor at the convention centre, and we offer a pride of installation as well as using the best of the best security solutions. We began by updating current cameras to Arecont Vision multi-sensor and multi-megapixel IP cameras and Salient Systems’ CompleteView VMS, Dellintegrated server with RAID6 configuration and CompleteView Enterprise software." He adds, "The VMS is a fully open architecture, enabling convention center security staff to seamlessly leverage existing technology investments and minimise disruption.”
BBVA Compass Stadium is a soccer-specific stadium located in Houston, Texas, USA and home to the Houston Dynamo, Major League Soccer club (part of MLS in USA). It also is home to the Houston Dash of the National Women’s Soccer League and to Texas Southern University Tiger football. It is also going through a major retrofit with its security systems to include a best of breed, open architecture solution. The stadium first opened in 2012, but six years later, Cultris Security Systems of Houston is back upgrading and expanding the current security installation. After spending five years with another security provider, the Dynamo and Dash, who maintains the facility, opted for a completely new solution. Axis cameras integrated with Salient Systems VMS Along with their current Panasonic cameras, stadium officials opted for Axis Communications cameras Along with their current Panasonic cameras, stadium officials opted for Axis Communications cameras. Both camera manufacturers play well with Salient Systems VMS. The result was an image resolution much more enhanced than they had been experiencing. “With all of this equipment brought together, we found it to be easy to use, user-friendly, and supported a very complimentary search function,” said Paul Fisher, Director of Key Accounts at Salient Systems, adding “For those people hired as facility guards, and with a sometime frequent turnover in staff, new people were able to use the Salient software right away and were able to do their job guarding the facility more quickly.” Paul further stated, “An installation like this is a great reference for us, and it is a very exciting security installation. Although there are fewer than 100 cameras, the placement and location of the cameras will allow security to monitor the sometimes over-zealous fans, and with BBVA Compass Stadium officials installing our synopsis video tool, stadium officials will be able to key-map the entire facility, gain analytical data and improve the customer experience.” CompleteView VMS platform Salient also partners with Dell, taking its CompleteView VMS platform into the booming Internet of Things market. The CompleteView VMS’ ability to quickly render and manage video surveillance over a WAN or LAN makes it a compelling offering for solution providers looking to gain a foothold in IoT. The manner through which the video is processed is very efficient, and can render the video and perform forensics on the video rapidly. As more businesses look to video surveillance as an IoT application, the CompleteView VMS platform can be integrated with other software packages will enable partners to work with customers to solve specific problems through big data and analytics capabilities. DSX software installed for secure access control BBVA Compass Stadium officials also switched out the outdated access control software and installed DSX software to complete the upgrade. “We have long known that DSX is a workhorse software solution,” said Jason Smith, President of Cultris Security Systems Inc., adding “It is easy to use and a lower cost to use. These upgrades are exciting for us to be part of because the installation will come in several phases, with the integration supported for years to come.” Open architecture security solutions Cultris technicians almost had a blank canvas to begin their security installation Jason adds, “We also found working with BBVA Compass Stadium staff very easy because they were receptive to open architecture security solutions. Phase Two will begin in 2019, and we’re excited to design the next layer of security at the stadium.” Cultris technicians almost had a blank canvas to begin their security installation. The facility itself is an open architecture facility, so facility managers were very receptive when plans were drawn up for security equipment. Much of the focus was on the stadium concourses, where the bulk of the soccer fans’ traffic is found during a match. 360-degree cameras installed The new master plan now included 360-degree cameras along the concourse, which offered coverage in every direction. The same 360-degree cameras were also placed near the locker rooms, loading docks and service areas. PTZ and fixed lens cameras were upgraded and placed in each corner of the facility where there is a gate for entrance and exit. As imagined, soccer fans are very passionate about their sport and teams, so cameras on the concourse were placed in a planned manner for the guarding staff to be able to know and react quickly if or when a fight broke out among spectators. The 360-degree cameras also enable the security staff to mobilise and reach the incident spot, where they would be required, as quickly as possible. 4K PTZ cameras Stadium security staff is able to view cameras placed in an adjacent parking area Houston’s BBVA Compass Stadium has a capacity of 22,039 seats, including 34 private suites, 1,100 club seats, an indoor premium club area, a dedicated supporters/fans stand and a food court. The stadium is designed to accommodate Major League Soccer (MLS) and FIFA standard international soccer, as well as other sports including football, lacrosse, and rugby and live concerts. Stadium security staff is able to view cameras placed in an adjacent parking area, as well as city security cameras (live view only) in order to ensure the safety and security of people coming to the venue and leaving after the match. These cameras have a 4K PTZ quick drive function, which helps establish a clear view of events, if additional security help is needed. As an integrator, Cultris Security has clearly installed a solution that will work properly for BBVA Compass Stadium, and their tenants, who are always looking to strike a goal.
Desert Highlands, the acclaimed luxury golf club and community in the stunning Sonoran Desert of North Scottsdale, has updated the community’s security system, installing the state-of-the-art Avigilon Surveillance System. The upgraded security system at Desert Highlands includes 55 new IP cameras installed throughout the property. Other features of the system include new technology that allows the Desert Highlands security team the ability to locate vehicles or people with specific description criteria, and an appearance search feature that can recognise individuals based on various descriptions. High quality video surveillance footage Avigilon Security Solutions are designed as easy-to-use software and hardware IP network products that include image capture, analysis, storage, transfer and playback of high quality video surveillance footage with visually lossless compression (no perceptible loss of visual detail), and electronic access control management. Typically, a luxury club and its community homeowners’ association’s security systems are not connected. With the Avigilon Surveillance System at Desert Highlands, the two security components are completely integrated with one another, which provides additional security measures and more proficiency. Safe and comforting Desert Highlands’ energetic lifestyle consistently draws discerning families and active Boomers in equal measure “We wanted to transform our surveillance system at Desert Highlands to something more sophisticated and efficient, and the highly touted Avigilon surveillance system matched our needs,” says General Manager Monty Becton. "Providing our residents and members peace of mind and ensuring the Desert Highlands experience remains safe and comforting are our ultimate priorities.” Desert Highlands’ energetic lifestyle consistently draws discerning families and active Boomers in equal measure, golfers, tennis enthusiasts, pet lovers, and health and wellness enthusiasts. A full social calendar allows residents to also fully enjoy this peaceful community. New irrigation system During the Coronavirus pandemic, Desert Highlands offers a pantry for its members and residents, where they could buy essentials (paper items, disinfectant, bread, milk, cheese, deli, proteins, beverages, etc.) from the club without leaving the confines of the community. The club carefully packages the items and either has them delivered to their houses or places the groceries in front of the clubhouse for pick-up. Stretching to over 7,100 yards, the Desert Highlands golf course recently underwent a $7 million renovation project that included refurbishing every bunker, restoring the 13th hole to its original design, installing a new irrigation system and updating cart paths. Premier tennis tournaments The splendid golf course offers a challenging, but fair test, and striking views of Pinnacle Peak and the lights of the Valley spread across the horizon in the distance below. Noted ATP player Nick Kyrgios considers Desert Highlands’ grass courts “better than Wimby" Desert Highlands was the first design in Arizona by Jack Nicklaus, and immediately set the bar for desert golf experiences, not only in Scottsdale but statewide and nationwide. Nicklaus, Gary Player, Arnold Palmer and Tom Watson have walked these fairways, as Desert Highlands was host site of the first Skins Game in 1983. Just as impressive is Desert Highlands’ Racquet Club, which sports 13 tennis courts featuring all three Grand Slam surfaces, grass, clay and hard. The Racquet Club annually hosts one of the premier tennis tournaments found anywhere, the USTA Southwest Grass Court Classic. Noted ATP player Nick Kyrgios considers Desert Highlands’ grass courts “better than Wimby [Wimbledon].” State-of-the-art security system Desert Highlands also boasts a 7,700-square-foot Wellness Centre, an 18-hole professionally designed putting course and a spacious dog park. Inside, the club provides residents peace of mind with a state-of-the-art security system, professionally trained security personnel, visitor control and access, and other protection amenities. Among the acclaimed residential services that truly pamper residents and meet their specific needs, shipping and transportation assistance, pool and spa maintenance, auto detailing and other customised services.
BI-City Tokyo is located in Nur-Sultan (Astana), the capital city of Kazakhstan. It is a high-end residential complex of BI Group – a construction holding company in the Kazakhstan real estate market. At present, three apartment buildings with public areas and more than 400 apartment units have been completed. Aiming to create modern high-end intelligent buildings and residential areas, the BI Group wanted to upgrade the existing analogue video intercom system of BI-City Tokyo. Analogue intercom system The original analogue intercom system in this community is outdated and cannot meet the diverse security requirements of high-end residential areas. First, the original analogue intercom does not support retaining images and leaving messages. Second, this system only supports access cards to open doors, which is inconvenient for residents in case they forgot their card. Third, the original system cannot add IP cameras to monitor public areas such as children's playground, fitness areas, etc. Fourth, the cold winter temperature in Nur-Sultan requires high-performance equipment capable of operating in extreme environments. Cold winter temperature requires high-performance equipment capable of operating in extreme environments Faced with the abovementioned challenges, BI Group was also looking for a trustworthy brand that can provide not only modern smart system but also technical support and reliable after-sales service. Meeting all the above requirements, Dahua smart residential solution was chosen to be the security solution provider of BI-City Tokyo. Access ANPR Camera The complete solution deployed more than 300 pieces of Dahua equipment, including Indoor Monitor, Apartment Outdoor Station, IP Camera, Access ANPR Camera, Video Recorder, etc. The solution supports two-way audio intercom, real-time video and messaging feature. In addition, a variety of door opening methods were also implemented: door opening via remote calling, door opening using access card, and remote door opening via APP. Additionally, all the equipment can be visualised and integrated in the Dahua DSS platform for centralised management, operation and maintenance. Moreover, the temperature in Nur-Sultan can reach up to negative 40 degrees in winter season. This requires high-performance outdoor devices featuring dust and water resistance, and explosion-roof capability. In response to this pressing challenge, Dahua apartment outdoor station VTO1210C-X-S1 and access ANPR camera ITC237-PW1B-IRZ that support wide working temperature were installed at the entrance of the apartment building for a more effective visitor and vehicle management. Built-in intelligent video analytics When a visitor arrives at the entrance of the apartment building and dials a resident’s room number through the Dahua apartment outdoor station, the camera installed at the entrance will synchronise the video with the visitor’s image captured in the resident’s indoor monitor. Once the visitor’s identity is confirmed, the resident just needs to press the button on the indoor monitor to open the door remotely. With Dahua app, users can even answer calls and open doors remotely when they are out for work or travelling. As for vehicles, Dahua access ANPR camera ITC237-PW1B-IRZ is designed for extreme temperature environments (temperature range of -40°C to +60°C). With built-in intelligent video analytics, the camera has the ability to detect and recognise moving vehicle's plate number within low speed. IR Mini-Bullet Network Camera The camera uses a set of optical features to balance light throughout the sceneFor both approaching and departing vehicles, the access ANPR camera takes a snapshot of the number plate and vehicle overview picture, as well as records corresponding surveillance videos. By setting a whitelist, the camera can automatically control the barrier or gate to open if a plate number recorded in the whitelist has been recognised. The public areas including children's playground, fitness areas, as well as the lobby are covered by 2MP IR Mini Dome Network Camera IPC-HDBW4231E-ASE, 2MP and 3MP IR Mini-Bullet Network Camera. The Starlight Ultra-low Light Technology of IPC-HDBW4231E-ASE offers light sensitivity, capturing colour details under low light condition up to 0.002lux. The camera uses a set of optical features to balance light throughout the scene, resulting in clear images in dark environments. Smart residential solution Dahua smart residential solution provides an integrated management platform for the management personnel of BI-City Tokyo. It assists in the remote and visual management of the property and improves the services and facilities they offer. Security guard at the entrance is not needed anymore to manage entering and exiting vehicles, which saves labour costs, reduces the waiting time of vehicles and improves traffic efficiency. In addition, the all-round monitoring of the public areas within BI-City Tokyo greatly improves the safety level of the entire community. The video intercom system of the building provides a variety of convenient door opening methods, enhancing the resident’s living experience. "We adopted analog solution in the first phase. From the second phase, we replaced all of analogue system with Dahua’s IP video intercom solution. We hope that Dahua will help us complete the solution planning of the three, four, five, and six phases”, said Arman, General Manager of BI Group.
Established in 1976, Meghna Group of Industries (MGI) is a conglomerate in Bangladesh. MGI operates out of a large campus in Dhaka that houses its head office, 45 different manufacturing plants, and maintenance workshops, all under one roof. MGI has a turnover of over USD 3 billion, and an employee strength of over 30,000. Being an established and trusted group, it required operations to be suitably monitored, in order to ensure uninterrupted production, adherence to quality standards, and timely delivery of supplies to customers. So far, it had been monitored by manned security, with accompanying risks ranging from damage to assets, misuse of equipment, thefts, leakage of confidential information, employees’ safety, poor record keeping for vehicles entering or exiting the premises, and more. Providing investigation-friendly monitoring software Enabling IVA at various locations has helped in the monitoring of infrastructure Designing of the solution started with a joint site survey by Videonetics, MGI IT heads, and the system integrator. After extensive research, Videonetics developed a unified solution encompassing Intelligent Video Management Software (IVMS), Intelligent Video Analytics (IVA), and a customised ANPR system to read and capture licence plates in Bengali language. Key aspects of the solution included the following: Videonetics’s IVMS has been deployed to help in viewing and recording feeds from over 500 cameras installed in multiple factory locations. This is enabled over IP network in an efficient and elegant way. In addition, the solution provides investigation-friendly monitoring software at the front-end, while relegating all the complexity of the server software to the back-end. Enabling IVA at various locations has helped in the monitoring of infrastructure, vehicles, people, crowds and objects, for automatic detection and analysis of events of interest. Manned security to address safety The operators get a bird’s eye view of various sites from their centralised location, enabling them to respond quickly and effectively when an incident occurs. The solution has been installed on Red Hat® Enterprise Linux® which makes the overall system more secure and maintainable. Videonetics’s Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) system has been customised to read license plates in Bengali. Regardless of the lighting conditions, the Bengali ANPR accurately captures with timestamp the licence plate of any vehicle as it appears in the camera’s field of view (FoV). The new implementation enables security operators to be deployed at the unified interface In addition, the system is integrated with the IVMS at the command and control centre, for viewing and analysing vehicular movements, and taking action, if required. THE IMPACT Prior to the installation of Videonetics’s solution, MGI used to rely on manned security to address safety, security and operational risks. However, the new implementation enables security operators to be deployed at the unified interface, for monitoring multiple sites such as assembly plant, warehouse, process, dispatch area, vehicle movement, and so on. Personal protection equipment detection So now, MGI operators can handle incidents of thefts, potential break-ins, unauthorised intrusions, and conduct investigations, without having to leave their desks. This has helped MGI in maximising resources and significantly reducing costs. But the biggest benefit has been to be able to provide a safer environment to its employees, and to secure its workplaces with optimisation in day-to-day operations. The open architecture of the solution allows MGI to continue adding, in a single interface, more AI & DL powered applications such as personal protection equipment detection, facial recognition, fire & smoke detection, workers slip/ fall detection, workers head count, vehicle movement management, to name a few. This makes it possible for the company to address all its security concerns with a holistic approach.
Round table discussion
They call it “critical” for a reason. The so-called “critical infrastructure” is composed of the basic services that citizens have come to depend on, and which are necessary to support society and ensure national stability. The term includes high-visibility segments such as airports, refineries, transportation, wastewater, nuclear reactors, electric utilities, pipelines, and more. Because these functions are so critical, the stakes of providing security are higher than for any other market. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the security challenges of critical infrastructure facilities?
Healthcare organisations are an important vertical market for many security manufacturers and integrators. Like other vertical markets, healthcare has its own unique set of requirements and challenges for physical security systems. We asked this week’s Expert Panel: What are the distinctive security problems faced by healthcare organisations? What technologies are being embraced to increase security?
College campuses often operate like small communities – or even like large communities depending on enrolment. Although each college and university campus is unique, there are commonalities such as a young and vulnerable population of students, many living away from their parents for the first time. Campuses can be urban or rural, geographically dispersed or densely populated, with a variety of demographics and “wild card” elements such as partying, drugs and alcohol. Campus police and security officers face a variety of challenging environments. Is it wise to add firearms to the mix? Is it necessary for campus police to be armed? Specifically, we asked this week’s Expert Panel: In what situations should college or university campus police be armed?
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