Near Field Communication
The security marketplace is talking about a lot of different subjects. Our website’s Expert Panel Roundtable discussions in 2018 reflected some of the “hot topics” in the industry. The very most-clicked-on Expert Panel Roundtable discussion in 2018 was about privacy issues and GDPR’s impact on physical security systems. Other hot topics that made the Top-10 list of roundtable discussions included obstacles to adoption of mobile credentials, what’s new “...
HID Global, a provider of trusted identity solutions, announced the Crescendo Mobile smart card to bring convenience to high security for accessing computer, network or cloud applications. The new HID mobile smart card utilises digital certificates on users’ mobile devices for client authentication. The HID Crescendo Mobile solution provides organisations seeking to eliminate passwords with a solution that combines the high security of physical authenticators with the usability of a mobil...
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Amer Hafiz, technical director at Nortech Control Systems, reviews the evolution of identity credentials in access control. Access control is defined as ‘the selective restriction of access to a place or other resource’. For an automatic access control system to function, it requires a means of identifying individuals to determine their access rights. The form of identification can be anything from a memorised password or PIN (personal identification number) to biometrics (measuremen...
On 5 October, iLOQ celebrated its 15th anniversary by hosting a unique business seminar and customer event in Helsinki, Finland. As a part of the celebrations, iLOQ CEO, Heikki Hiltunen, revealed the company’s new brand identity to staff, partners and key customers from Finland and abroad. “Anniversaries are a time to be proud of what we’ve achieved so far; but they also give us the chance to focus on the next stage in our journey, and to a future that’s full of potentia...
People and vehicle access control specialist Nortech is now offering smart people identification using mobile access technology. The Nedap MACE platform allows any access control system to use smartphones as access credentials. The platform consists of a cloud-based service, readers and the MACE app. The MACE app can receive and store multiple virtual identity credentials. The credentials can be presented to MACE readers using NFC, Bluetooth Low Energy or QR codes. The process of issuing these...
Protecting major brands against counterfeiting and grey market activities is a global challenge, which yields the same result regardless of the industry: lost sales and a poor customer experience that are damaging to the brand. HID Global, a worldwide provider of trusted identity solutions, has responded to this escalating issue by increasing its investments in HID’s IoT-based brand protection services and expanding its community of partners who develop and deliver seamless front-end experiences to global brands and consumers. Securely authenticating products with mobile HID leverages Apple’s NFC read capabilities to drive mass adoption and help the average consumer avoid being duped by counterfeit products" These initiatives are bringing peace of mind to both manufacturers seeking to safeguard their brands and consumers who want to verify the authenticity of their purchases in a trusted IoT environment. HID Trusted Tag Services make this possible by securely authenticating products from the time of production, through every step of the distribution process, and at the point of consumer sale–all with a simple tap of an Android or iOS phone. “As a pioneer of brand protection, HID is able to quickly leverage Apple’s NFC read capabilities to drive mass adoption and help the average consumer avoid being duped by counterfeit products,” said Mark Robinton, Director Business Development and Strategic Innovation at HID Global. “Our solution goes beyond adding trust to the global supply chain; it also opens a secure channel for brands to engage directly with consumers as part of their brand loyalty strategy.” Authentication solutions to prevent counterfeiting In the United States, New York City based partner Blue Bite has launched an authentication suite, which uses HID Trusted Tag Services for major European brands, in partnership with Italy based Temera. “Brands are adopting product authentication to help protect against the negative effects of counterfeiting," said Mikhail Damiani, Blue Bite CEO. "We've developed a highly secure and scalable authentication solution that uses the power of NFC to empower both brands and customers alike in their fight against this growing issue." In Canada, Toronto based partner Authentic or Not is working with HID to provide a secure brand authentication experience to major brands. Ahmer Beg, Founder and CEO of Authentic or Not, added, “With our patented technology, we are in the business of adding intelligence to products and unlocking real-world engagement with consumers. HID Trusted Tag Services provide the secure bridge between products and the digital world to make this possible. We see a future where counterfeit goods can be easily rooted out and brands can provide customers with VIP experiences through our platform.” Using HID Trusted Tag Services In the United Kingdom, London based partner Skute is using HID Trusted Tag Services to unlock real-time, hyper-personalised experiences for a new wave of fan engagement. “Our platform is shifting the paradigm in fan engagement by giving consumers secure, authentic and direct access to their favourite musical artist, athletes, teams and brands, all via a variety of creative form factors so organisations can facilitate exclusive direct marketing experiences. This exclusivity translates to the younger market too–in industries such as gaming, toys and music–where Skute gives parents peace of mind that their children can safely engage with various channels in a ‘ring fenced’ IoT ecosystem,” said Dan Lewis, CEO of Skute. In Australia, Tasmanian based partner AusNFC uses HID Trusted Tag Services with their web application Old Kimpton Distillery and McHenry Distillery. “We believe that HID Trusted Tag Services are changing the game for securely authenticating brands. Being able to stay connected and engage with their consumers as part of building brand loyalty was a deciding factor when Old Kimpton Distillery and McHenry Distillery chose HID for brand protection,” said Larry Hower, CEO of AusNFC. Combining cloud authentication with NFC tags HID Trusted Tag Services combine HID’s cloud authentication services with its trusted NFC tags that come in many form factors for variety of product shapes and sizes requiring brand authentication. HID’s trusted NFC tags are embedded into each product during the manufacturing process, and are easily read using NFC-enabled smartphones (both Android and iOS v11 and newer). The advanced cryptographic capabilities of the embedded tags make them virtually impossible to be cloned or copied, and the extended security features in HID’s cloud authentication service provide privacy-preserving brand authentication and consumer engagement in a closed and trusted environment.
International Procurement Services (IPS) announces the release of the Research Electronics International (REI) ANDRE Deluxe Near-Field Detection Receiver which offers higher frequency detection range, ultrasonic detection, new software and a new antenna which extends the frequency detection range to 12 GHz. ANDRE Deluxe Near-Field Detection Receiver The ANDRE detects signal activity and displays a histogram of signal strength over time The ANDRE detects signal activity and displays a histogram of signal strength over time. It is a handheld broadband receiver capable of detecting covert electronics including GSM bugs, microphones, cameras, RF and Wi-Fi transmitters, and mobile phones. Possible applications may be in RF emissions detection, Prison contraband, RF spectrum management, Executive protection, Technical surveillance countermeasures (TSCM), Intelligence protection and Fraud detection at exam testing sites. The ANDRE’s success at detecting and locating the source of RF, infrared, visible light, carrier current and other types of transmissions has expanded in the new Deluxe model with several additional antennas/probes, accessories, software and operational features. The New Antennas/Probes: Down converting Antenna – this directional antenna replaces the log periodic in the Deluxe and provides twice the frequency range. The Down converting antenna has 2 bands, Band 1 (500 MHz – 6 GHz), and Band 2 (6 GHz-12 GHz) Ultrasonic Probe – this probe detects ultrasonic sound waves that are beyond the upper audible limit of human hearing (15 kHz – 80 kHz), including ultrasonic jamming devices Directional Antenna – this antenna provides directional detection of lower frequency signals (300 Hz to 20 kHz) Software and Operational Features: Data Logging is a new software feature that provides detailed long-term histogram data for downloading to PC and viewing in the ANDRE Data Viewer software. Signal data includes: time/date, signal amplitude, user settings, probes, chart duration and detailed frequency band information. There are 3 optional resolution modes: 250 hours and 500ms resolution 25 hours and 50ms resolution 30 minutes and 1ms resolution Other Antennas/Probes include: Whip/Dipole Antenna (30 MHz – 6 GHz) RF Sniffer/Locator Probe (20 MHz – 6 GHz) VLF Loop Antenna (10 kHz – 30 MHz) Concealed Antenna (750 MHz – 6 GHz) Acoustic Leakage Probe Audio Transformer (300 Hz – 20 kHz) Carrier Current Probe (100 kHz – 60 MHz) Built-in Visible Light/IR Detector (1 kHz – 70 MHz) ANDRE Data Viewer ANDRE Data Viewer presents information from Data Logging files in a histogram display for post sweep review, analysis and reporting ANDRE Data Viewer – this PC software program presents information from Data Logging files in a histogram display for post sweep review, analysis and reporting. It can also open captured screen shots. The ANDRE Data Viewer can be downloaded from the REI website. ANDRE Deluxe Accessories – new accessories include a 6 ft. boom extender to increase antenna reach. A table top tripod provides stationary placement of antennas. New 5 ft. and 9 ft. probe connector cables are included to supply power to new ANDRE Deluxe antennas as well as passive connectivity to existing antennas. An IR Filter attached to the ANDRE filters out everything but infrared. Band identification and FCC frequency All ANDRE models include a built-in frequency counter that logs the strongest signals to a signal list, and includes detailed information like signal strength, attenuation and gain, and communication band classification. Band identification helps determine the FCC frequency allocation the signal falls within. It includes an audio amplifier for listening to demodulated analogue audio and ten second recordings. The ANDRE also captures and stores screen shots and audio files. A USB cable transfers files and recharges batteries and it auto-detects attached antenna probes.
STANLEY Security, a trusted name in the world of security, has partnered with London-based security start-up Doordeck to launch the Stanley OneDoor smartphone-based access control system. Stanley OneDoor can be used with existing STANLEY access control products and rolled out to an entire building in under one hour, without the need for any new hardware. Designed to be quick and simple to use, Stanley OneDoor removes the need for keycards and tags and all the management and associated costs that entails. Instead, users gain access via their smartphones through the Stanley OneDoor App, ‘reading’ Stanley OneDoor tiles using either a QR code, via the app, or an NFC chip, just like Apple Pay and Google Pay. Costs associated with managing an access control system are largely removed, making Stanley OneDoor even more cost-effective Bank-level encryption Highly flexible, the system is secured with bank-level encryption and can also be used with traditional cards and tags where required. For STANLEY Security access control customers, Stanley OneDoor provides significant benefits with no capital expenditure. Instead, there is a competitively priced monthly subscription fee per door, with unlimited users. Furthermore, costs associated with managing an access control system are largely removed, making Stanley OneDoor even more cost-effective. Access can be managed remotely, with no requirement to be present to issue a virtual key. All administration functions are also managed online and are comparable to existing systems. Cost-effective and convenient There are environmental benefits to be had from this approach as existing hardware is used rather than heading for landfill and plastic cards and tags become a thing of the past. Stanley OneDoor is not only cost-effective and convenient but also highly secure: lost or misplaced keycards are a regular occurrence and represent a security threat. People are far more mindful of their Smartphone and, even if they are lost or stolen, remain more secure as fingerprint and facial recognition means the Stanley OneDoor app doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. Refreshingly innovative technology For high-security sites, Stanley OneDoor can also be configured to use restricted wi-fi networks and GPS Geofencing as additional security layers. Plus, with immediately accessible usage logs and access data, administrators can see up-to-date statistics about who’s in their building and how it’s being used. OneDoor is one of the first solutions to emerge from our new approach to product development"Matthew Marriott, General Manager for STANLEY Security Great Britain, considers OneDoor to be a breakthrough product in access control: “OneDoor is one of the first solutions to emerge from our new approach to product development. We are partnering with tech start-ups and companies at an early stage to bring refreshingly innovative technology to the market in a commercially viable form. We are pleased to be working with Doordeck on this project and are now in a position to take OneDoor to market.” Effective access control systems William Bainborough, Chief Executive of Doordeck, said: “We are extremely excited to be partnering with STANLEY Security for Stanley OneDoor. We feel STANLEY Security not only understands the commercial value that Stanley OneDoor can bring to our customers, but also truly appreciates the technological expertise behind it.” Stanley OneDoor joins STANLEY Security’s comprehensive range of access control solutions including STANLEY NT500, Paxton, PLAN and in the enterprise level access control PACOM, Lenel, S2, Honeywell Prowatch, C-Cure Software House and Genetec. STANLEY’s team of security experts has decades of experience designing and installing effective access control systems in a broad range of industries.
There are several that make the widespread adoption now difficult, the first of which is the pitfalls of different phones and the platforms on which they run. Not everyone carries the same type of phone - or even a smartphone. When you have 3,000 people in a company who all need credentials to access a facility, it is rarely feasible to give each person a phone that will run the application needed. Another consideration is how to handle visitors and contractors that might require short- or long-term access to a facility. Perhaps more obvious is the challenge that emerges when a mobile device runs out of battery, thereby rendering it useless when trying to access a facility. Privacy concerns with mobile credentials Many end users are now shifting toward a hybrid approach to access control that utilises both traditional badges that allow access to a facility, as well as the option to use their mobile device as their credentials Another challenge end users face when considering implementing a mobile-based access control solution is the concern employees may have regarding privacy. When using mobile credentials on a private mobile phone, there's a certain level of access an employer has to the phone. Employees are concerned as to how employers are using their information with regards to location-based data, or where an employee is at any given moment. Naturally, with this level of access to personal information, there's going to be a concern about how that data is used. While there is definite movement in the direction of mobile credentials across enterprises, another issue is the proprietary nature of the technology. Since it's still emerging, there are no common standards in place that police its use, so end users that choose to invest in the technology are often locked into a single manufacturer's system without the flexibility that more open-platform solutions allow. Using traditional badges or mobile credentials Many end users are now shifting toward a hybrid approach to access control that utilises both traditional badges that allow access to a facility, as well as the option to use their mobile device as their credentials. The argument is that many employees will have their phones on them at all times, but might not always remember a badge or ID. Having the option to use either solution is becoming a more widespread use of mobile-based systems. With regard to privacy concerns, it's important for security managers to work closely with human resources and other C-level executives to implement best practices for the use of this technology in an effort to better inform employees and guide implementation. Choosing the right access control solution Many want the flexibility to offer multiple options to their employees, but again, have to consider the privacy implications as well as the technology involved We are seeing an increasing customer demand for mobile credentials, so it's important to understand their needs when discussing which access control solutions are ‘right’ for an organisation. Many want the flexibility to offer multiple options to their employees, but again, have to consider the privacy implications as well as the technology involved in trying to implement such a solution. Another consideration is the actual physical implementation. Most mobile-based credentialing systems are built with Bluetooth, which has a long-range capability; and this can be problematic. For example, turnstiles that are in close proximity to each other might pick up credentials that are a greater distance away. Standards such as near-field communications (NFC) that can be found in a lot of devices can address some of these concerns, but NFC’s ability to be used openly in an iPhone environment is not fully established and therefore isn't a viable option unless the same kind of devices is used across an organisation.
Following the success of the first Hereford Defence and Security Expo in 2017, Harrison Clark Rickerbys, one of the UK’s Top 100 law firms, is organising a second major defence and security expo, the Three Counties Defence and Security Expo (3CDSE) 2018, which will be held at the Three Counties Showground, Malvern on 31st May 2018. The event, which will be of interest to those involved in private and public safety and security, crime prevention and those serving in the police forces as well as to those in the military and broader defence and security industry, is the inspiration of Richard Morgan, partner and head of the Defence, Security and the Forces team at Harrison Clark Rickerbys. Richard said; “The first event at The Courtyard Theatre, Hereford, was over-subscribed, reaching the venue capacity of 30 exhibitors (with an unfulfilled waiting list of interested businesses) and 400 delegates, who attended from across the UK. Building on this success, the event has been scaled up, and we’re delighted that the Three Counties Showground in Malvern will be this year’s venue, with capacity for up to 150 exhibitors and 2,000 delegates.”Local business groups and government bodies have partnered with Harrison Clark Rickerbys to support the event Business networking He continued; “The regional dynamic and still relatively intimate scale of the event offers business to business networking opportunities between contributors to the defence and security sector in the Three Counties area as well as with prime contractors and the military. This means that unlike larger expos, delegates have the opportunity to meet with decision makers.” 3CDSE will be run in partnership with The Manufacturers’ Organisation (EEF) and its dedicated defence sub-group, National Defence Industries (NDI). Local business groups and government bodies, including the Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce, Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, Worcestershire Business Central, Hereford Enterprise Zone/Skylon Park, Gloucestershire Local Enterprise Partnership have also partnered with Harrison Clark Rickerbys to support the event. Support and participation With a theme of innovation, commitments of support and participation have been received from many senior military speakers including Brigadier Robin Sergeant, Head of Future Force Development of the British Army; Danny Wootton, Head of Innovation, MoD and Colonel Jani Marok RMR, Head of the Royal Marine Reserves. Leading defence and security experts from prime industry contractors such as Vodafone, BAE Systems and Thales will also be presenting and exhibiting, alongside leading defence and security businesses and experts based in the Three Counties. The exhibition space will be zoned, to include cyber security, hardware and vehicles, IT and communications (C4ITS) and unmanned aerial vehicles.Given the introduction of DEFCON 658, GDPR and the NIS Directive, we see the value in our sector coming together Sharing security lessons Dr Alex Tarter, head of Cyber Consulting at Thales, has been working in the field of critical national infrastructure cyber security for over 10 years, and will be one of the presenters at the event. Dr. Tarter said; “Thales believes in the strength and diversity of the defence and security supply chain which is why we’re happy to support the Three Counties Defence and Security Expo." "Given the recent significant changes to our industry through the introduction of DEFCON 658, GDPR and the NIS Directive, we see the value in our sector coming together, sharing valuable lessons learned and contributing to the creation of a vibrant and secure environment for UK PLC to continue to blossom on the world-stage.” Workshops and presentations In addition to the presentation programme, there will be a networking breakfast with a keynote speaker, as well as a full day of workshops and presentations covering international trade, grants and finance and practical information about doing business with the MoD.3CDSE will appeal to those operating in the defence and security industry Outside the exhibition hall there will be a military display; inside, alongside the main defence and security exhibition, there will be a professional village presenting organisations such as banks and recruitment businesses who provide professional advice and specialist services to the defence industry. Members of the West Midlands Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association will also be on hand to answer employer queries about the MoD’s Employer Covenant. Richard Morgan concluded; “3CDSE will appeal to those operating in the defence and security industry, those seeking products and services from the industry and those seeking to engage with the industry for joint ventures, employment, education or other initiatives.”
The rapid adoption of employee scheduling and workforce management software SmartTask gathered pace last year with record levels of growth in the UK and internationally. In particular, there was an 81% increase in the number of field service businesses using the system during 2017, which now includes over 100 manned security providers and 15% of the ACS Pacesetters. “Over the past few years we have worked hard to understand the needs of the manned security industry to develop a solution that possesses the right mix of employee scheduling and workforce management functionality,” explains Paul Ridden, CEO of SmartTask. “This has enabled us to achieve impressive growth last year both domestically and worldwide, with our software now being used in 15 countries and successful trials underway in mainland Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Australasia.” Intelligent rostering functionality The number of locations that are now coordinated using SmartTask grew by 160% in 2017 to over 16,000, across a 17,000-strong employed and subcontracted workforce. In fact, the variety of managed sites expanded significantly to include: Football stadiums, national museums, retail developments, industrial estates, science parks, schools, universities, factories, airports, banks, hospitals and even a F1 racing team.The intelligent rostering functionality is being used to schedule almost one million hours of work per month SmartTask continued to help manned security providers to gain visibility and control over customer sites with more than 250,000 patrols monitored, over 5.5 million NFC checkpoints scanned, and 50,000 electronic Smartforms processed during 2017. Meanwhile, the intelligent rostering functionality is being used to schedule almost one million hours of work per month, as well as calculating £40 million of employee pay and £50 million of customer billing over the past year. Towards cloud-based solutions A number of new innovations were introduced in 2017 in response to changing needs within the security marketplace. Using its established expertise within the sector and taking advantage of the latest technological developments, SmartTask introduced a new vetting capability to simplify appropriate employee screening and background checks. A comprehensive trial of Smartbeacons was also undertaken as part of a project to extend patrol monitoring and proof of presence options. “2017 saw the number of businesses depending on SmartTask expand by more than 80%. This record growth is down to our ability to develop a highly adaptable, scalable and affordable cloud-based solution that achieves proven business and operational benefits for manned security providers. We are looking forward to building on this success and expect to continue this growth trend through 2018 and beyond.”
Considering how much the modern smartphone has become a common everyday tool and cultural icon, it’s hard to believe it has only been with us for a relatively short space of time. The first Apple iPhone was launched in 2007 and yet in a little over a decade the smartphone has become as essential as our keys or wallet. From its conception as a multi-faceted communications device, it has morphed into something far more integrated in our daily lives. Services such as Apple Pay, Android Pay and PayPal have seen the smartphone become a credible replacement for cash and cash cards, but equally, it is possible to replace access cards and keys as well.Smartphones can easily receive authentication credentials remotely and access can be confirmed or denied instantly The ability to accurately authenticate an individual and the applications this offers for security purposes, is something that the security industry needs to continue to embrace and further promote to our customers. Considerable advantages Most security professionals understand the potential benefits of using mobile device authentication, with flexibility being the key advantage. Smartphones can easily receive authentication credentials remotely and access can be confirmed or denied instantly. Equally, smartphones already contain many secure options to ensure they are only used by the authorised user – fingerprint and face recognition, as well as pattern authentication and PIN, being prime examples. Unfortunately, there is still a lack of awareness amongst some security operators, customers and the public of these exciting benefits. Potentially there may also be some reluctance, in certain quarters, to trusting a mobile device with physical security. A lack of trust in seemingly ‘unproven’ technology is not unusual, but the security industry needs to demonstrate reliability along with the considerable security and convenience benefits of using it. Trusted part of security network Many smart devices already securely bind the mobile device with the right person by using 2-factor authenticationMobile device security needs to earn its trust, in much the same way as any other new ground-breaking application. In fairness to the doubters, it’s not hard to imagine how much of a risk a badly protected mobile device could be to any secure network! There are two key obstacles that smartphones need to clear before they can become a trusted part of the security network though. Firstly, that they are secure enough to be trusted as part of a security network, and secondly that they can reliably identify an authorised user in a real-world environment. Many smart devices already securely bind the mobile device with the right person by using 2-factor authentication. For example, this could combine a PIN code with the fingerprint or face of the authorised individual. In areas with particularly high security, you could also implement a wall-mounted biometric reader (fingerprint, facial recognition or iris scan) to add a further level of protection and ensure there is no wrongful use of the mobile device. Security tokens or access cards are typically rigid in their programming, only allowing access to certain areas Security by location With its many and varied functions, undoubtedly one of the most useful systems on any smartphone is its GPS location tracking. It’s also a perfect tool to assist with security systems interaction.A benefit of using smart device authentication is the cost savings over operating traditional tokens Consider any secure facility – it will feature different levels of access. This can vary from a humble canteen and break-out areas, right through to secured doors around potentially dangerous or highly sensitive areas - such as plant rooms, or even a nuclear facility! Security tokens or access cards are typically rigid in their programming, only allowing access to certain areas. A smartphone, however, can be granted or denied access depending on the location of the request by the individual – GPS literally adds a level of extra intelligence to security. Personal items Using QR codes seem to be a simple but reliable identity and access control authentication option Mobile devices tend to be guarded and protected with the same concern as your money or your keys. Many of us literally carry our mobile device everywhere with us, so they are relatively unlikely to be misplaced or lost – certainly in comparison to a key card for example. Also, think about how often you use or hold your smartphone – some estimates suggest 2,600 times each day! With that level of interaction, you’ll be aware very quickly if it’s been misplaced, not least because of the inconvenience and cost to replace it. This level of personal connection makes it perfect for use with security systems. Cost savings Another obvious benefit of using smart device authentication is the cost savings over operating traditional tokens. No more plastic badges, access cards, lanyards, printers and consumables used to administer security. This is something the security industry really needs to shout about! It will come as no surprise to hear that smartphones are exceptionally common too. Figures suggest that in 2015 there were nearly 41m in use in the UK and this is predicted to rise to 54m by 2022. With the UK population being just over 65m, that is a very high percentage of people already carrying this technology. Using a resource that people already have, and which is highly secure, makes unquestionable financial as well as practical sense. GPS location tracking is a perfect tool to assist with security systems interaction Integrated technology Agreeing on common and shared open protocols has unfortunately been one of the stumbling blocks for the security industry in adapting to a predominantly smartphone authentication approach. NFC (Near Field Communications) technology in mobile phones and smart devices has failed to be the universal success it promised.Not everyone has an iPhone, but it is such an important segment of the market for customers Mobile technology trends have dictated to the systems that use it. Apple’s earlier (Pre iOS 11) decision to restrict the use of NFC to Apple Pay on its devices has had a profound effect on the implementation of NFC in other applications too. Not everyone has an iPhone, but it is such an important segment of the market that other manufacturers are wary of how customers will be able to use any new technology. We have seen a much bigger focus on using Bluetooth Low Energy technology on mobile devices instead. With providers such as HID Global, STid in France and Nedap in the Netherlands now concentrating on developing Bluetooth Low Energy readers and mobile credential applications, this seems like a highly credible alternative. Along with NFC and Bluetooth Low Energy options, there also seems to be a lot of interest in using QR codes as simple but reliable identity and access control authentication. These can easily be displayed on a screen or printed if necessary, giving great flexibility over the type of technology that is used in the future. Upgrading existing security systems There are strong arguments for many businesses to continue using MIFARE+ systems if they suit operations well We are steadily seeing the signs of smartphone authentication replacing the cards and tokens we have been familiar with. However, many consumers still want options rather than to just be railroaded down one path. A business that has invested in cards or tokens will want to use that technology investment fully. The changes will come when readers are updated – this is when security specifiers and installers need to promote the advantages of dual-technology readers, which offer options to include smartphone authentication into the mix. There is still considerable diversity amongst smart devices, the operating systems they use, and the security technology employed by each. Android, Apple iOS and Blackberry devices all vary with regards to the biometric authentication available, so security administrators may need to be flexible on the types of authentication they accept. Interestingly, card technology has also progressed at an astonishing speed too – with MIFARE+ proving to be a highly cost-effective, practical and secure system that can easily be integrated. There are strong arguments for many businesses to continue using these systems if they suit operations well. NFC (Near Field Communications) technology in mobile phones and smart devices has failed to be the universal success it promised Hybrid systems A hybrid approach may be the best answer for many security operators. This means those who choose to enjoy the benefits in terms of flexibility and convenience of smartphone authentication can do so, whilst those who are more hesitant can continue to use more traditional methods. A hybrid approach may be the best answer for many security operators Larger organisations may find that the swap over is a slower and more gradual process, whilst smaller start-up businesses may prefer to jump to a smartphone-based approach straight away. If security systems are well integrated but modular in their approach, then it becomes much simpler to evolve as time goes on. Embracing the benefits Using their app-based systems architecture, smartphones are ideally placed to evolve with security systems in the future. There are many benefits for the security industry and our customers, but we need to remember that this move will involve a culture change for many security operators and users. The security industry needs to be mindful and respectful of any anxiety, but also be positive and promote the considerable benefits mobile authentication offers.
Since the introduction of smartphones with downloadable applications, vendors have been trying to replace the traditional plastic identification (ID) card with a mobile phone application. People might lose or misplace an ID card, but most people immediately recognise if they are without their mobile phone. Mobile ID badges for access control Bluetooth Low Energy iBeacon technology Technical challenges of mobile ID apps The logical extension is to replace or augment the traditional corporate ID and access control card with a smartphone ID application. There are numerous benefits associated with using a smartphone as an ID badge. Fundamentally, they are more secure because smartphones can be locked, data encrypted and access restricted. Secure ID access can also be remotely installed and activated or deactivated on a smartphone with little effort from the IT or security department. In addition, there is no need to physically visit the security office to get a replacement badge. Mobile ID badges and open systems The industry-wide adoption of mobile ID badges has been hindered by the evolution of existing and available technology and the vendor/partner ecosystems that have controlled the technology and markets. For a general application to achieve significant market adoption, it must have the required open systems and technology infrastructure in place and enabled to achieve scalable and secure deployments. Simply put, a mobile ID badge application needs support from the major phone manufacturers and interoperability with existing industry standard security models and protocols established in the market today. It was not until the promise of near field communication (NFC) that the idea of a mobile ID badge for access control started to take hold as a realistic possibility. After all, if you can replace your credit cards by waving your phone with a digital wallet over a point of sale (POS) device in a retail store, why can’t you replace your corporate ID card for physical access by waving it in front of a door reader? One major issue that hindered the broad adoption of NFC was the lack of support by major phone manufacturers – specifically Apple with the iPhone - which limited the growth of phone-based mobile IDs for door readers that control physical access. To create a practical smartphone-based mobile ID badge app, there are several technical challenges which must be addressed BLE beacons development Apple eventually announced a new Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) iBeacon technology and Google followed suit with its Android-based Eddystone BLE beacon in 2015. BLE beacons are small, low-cost hardware devices that transmit a unique identifier over Bluetooth low energy to nearby electronic devices such as mobile phones. The initial use of BLE beacons were centered around determining location for mobile marketing applications. For example, if a customer is passing a merchandise display, it could notify them of a coupon or sale while they are in the store. Because BLE is universally available on all smartphones, the use of BLE beacons has enabled new experiential smartphone apps based on physical location presence. In the corporate environment, vendors have quickly determined that there are many ways to leverage BLE to simplify workplace-related functions. These include asset tracking, logging into networks and cloud resources, access to print jobs, meeting room usage, attendance systems, and even employee location tracking. PACS two-way communication and universal access Physical Access Control System (PACS) vendors and security organisations find BLE technology attractive as an access control application because of the two-way communication capability and universal access in smartphones. This is important because the smartphone acts as a reader and can determine presence or location next to a BLE beacon or communicate to a door reader access control device. For this reason, they have quickly determined ways to leverage BLE to enable access control and ID badges for both existing and new PACS solutions. For example, smartphones can be installed with a mobile ID badge application that can communicate with BLE-enabled door readers. One behavioural challenge associated with this solution is that people today are accustomed to using RFID-enabled access control cards as part of their daily lifespans vendors leverage the technology limits of an access control card read distance (1-3 cm) to the door reader to administer physical access. For example, the location of the reader next to the door or the timing of the read and door access strike opening the door, can all be orchestrated behind the scenes to provide a seamless door entry experience. This is the current user expectation and ensures the proper level of security while reducing tailgating, enforcing badge reads and preventing backups or entry queues. All of this happens transparently to ensure the frictionless access control users enjoy today. The “door open” event needs to occur just as a person approaches a door to avoid potential security breaches Mobile ID badge app challenges BLE beacons by design broadcast a unique adjustable signal over a wide range of up to 150 feet. While this is ideal for creating mobile ID apps for shopping or presenting location-based notifications and alerts, there are some concerns about when it should be used to provide access control and open a door. The “door open” event needs to occur just as a person approaches a door to avoid potential security breaches. Other key considerations include how to account for multiple doors within close proximity, avoiding a door detection from someone walking behind or away from a door and tailgating events. To create a practical smartphone-based mobile ID badge app, these technical challenges must be addressed. Some concepts being tested and used today include having a door open acknowledgment response via a notification, or waving the phone or using another gesture to acknowledge that you are in front of a door to request accessible still has some challenges to overcome before becoming the de facto industry standard for mobile ID badge access. Once the challenges are addressed, it has the potential to drive the next wave of innovation in access control and enable the next generation of ubiquitous mobile ID badge applications that will provide the seamless and secure access control that we enjoy today with traditional ID cards.
Part 3 of our Intercoms in Security Series: Zenitel’s Call Access Panel manages intelligible critical communications through a security operations centre or control room Greater connectivity, security software enhancements, more customisation, and better sound quality are some of the enhancements driving the intercom market.An advantage now offered on Code Blue’s emergency speakerphones include self-diagnosing software that monitors the status of the phones and their components — microphones, buttons and speakers — and delivers instant notifications if there is ever an issue. Code Blue phones also come with full duplex capabilities with echo cancelling, sometimes known as open duplex, which allows the caller and first responder to communicate simultaneously and eliminates buzzing and static. IP-based networking systems Code Blue also builds its phones to open standards like Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), which allows calls to be easily processed with a wide variety of systems and software solutions, says David Fleming, Chief Design Officer for Code Blue Corp.Networking has impacted the intercom market, with the advent of IP-based systems. The corporate network now makes it possible to share information and to control units from a few yards to thousands of miles away, according to Bruce Czerwinski, U.S. General Sales Manager, Aiphone Corp. For example, central command centre guards can monitor and allow entrance to any networked satellite or unmanned facility 24/7. Multi-site communications Networks have also spawned mobile apps that allow roaming guards to use smartphones and devices to maintain total control of an intercom system while away from the master station and on the Wi-Fi. And network paging is another recently added communications tool, valuable for routine announcements or emergency instructions. "Voice is becoming the killer app for serving the safety and security needs of employees and customers" “We’re now able to offer large-scale multi-site communications using intercom systems,” says Czerwinski. “That’s not just connecting a few buildings on opposite sides of a campus quad, but all those separated by state lines, even across the country.”As markets and customers served by intercom products continue to evolve with new needs requiring new solutions, intercom companies continually poll the market and develop new and interesting solutions for these needs.All-in-one physical access control solutionBecause intercom manufacturer 2N’s products are often used as part of a physical access control system, convenience and security are key attributes. Bluetooth technology will be employed heavily. 2N has just introduced its Bluetooth access control reader for both standalone access control and integrated into 2N’s VERSO door station.The technology is based on Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology, which offers long-range detection (up to 10 metres), low energy consumption and ‘banking’ level security. It can be combined with other technologies — near field communication (NFC) and radio-frequency identification (RFID) — for an all-in-one solution.Mobile video app for door intercoms 2N has also launched a mobile video app/service. It enables a consumer’s smart device to be used as an interface to the door intercom, allowing video calls from anywhere in the world, door access control, and as an ‘always on’ video and audio surveillance system. Notifications can be launched automatically; for example, if someone approaches the homeowner’s door, porch, or surrounding area. A low-cost all-in-one door station — Base — has been released for the residential and small business space, including HD video, audio, and door control but in a simpler-to-install and lower-cost format. Zenitel’s Customer Intercom Station Kit enables customers to build their own stations In the spring, 2N is releasing a Z-wave networked door control solution that’s easy to install and extends the reach of an access control system.Off-the-shelf communication devicesJim Hoffpauir, President of Zenitel North America, says the intercom company offers a choice of either off-the-shelf communication devices or components to enable customised stations to be built based on a customer’s aesthetics or form and/or function needs. Users also must be heard and be understood, says Hoffpauir. “We spend millions of dollars in research and development on the intellectual property that defines and sets the standard for intelligible voice audio in the communications industry,” he says. “And we focus on embedding that capability with strategic alliances in access control, video and unified communications.”“Voice is becoming the killer app for serving the safety and security needs of employees and customers,” says Hoffpauir. “We want to create new interoperable solutions such as our networked HD Video Door station that acts as a communication device as well as an access control station.” It has two-way communication for 24/7 video identification and support for IP phone or unified communications through SIP. Intelligible critical communications solutions Zenitel’s Call Access Panel manages intelligible critical communications through a security operations centre or control room. The panel has a small footprint with pre-programmable buttons for instantaneous emergency or mass notifications to all intercom stations or IP public address, alarms, or horns. And it is SIP-compatible for unified communications. Changes in hardware and software are transforming the intercom market, as are changes in how systems are combined and configured. There is also a trend toward more discernment in terms of audio quality and system performance. Including an evaluation ‘scorecard’ in a request for proposal (RFP), for example, can ensure there is a clear way to evaluate systems being considered. “We are teaching the market there can be a legitimate scorecard on intelligibility,” says Dan Rothrock, SVP of Global Strategic Alliances, Zenitel North America. “You may not know you have bad audio until something bad happens, and it’s too late.” Read part 4 in our Security Intercoms series here
Consumer electronics are closely related to physical security. For one thing, electronics consumers increasingly see security as one of the functions they want their smart home systems to perform. We have heard the Internet of Things (IoT) buzzword in our market, and it is also a major force in the changing consumer electronics arena. Because consumer electronics are increasingly tied in with security, many in our industry keep a close eye on developments at the huge Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that kicks off every new year in Las Vegas. There are more security-related announcements than ever at CES, and the show sometimes offers a preview of what’s to come in the world of video. The video technologies our industry uses are generally introduced first in the consumer electronics field, and then are adapted to the more specialised video surveillance market. Over the years, the CES show has provided us the first glimpse of high-profile technologies such as 4K video, and the 2017 show (5-8 January) was no exception. Intelligent home automation systems One of the biggest names in security – ADT – made news at this year’s CES. The provider of automation solutions for homes and businesses welcomed the Amazon Echo and Echo Dot products into its ADT Pulse ecosystem. Homeowners will now be able to arm and disarm their home security system with simple voice commands and a security PIN. It’s just one example of how the “smart home” trend (and IoT) is evolving in lockstep with security. Alarm.com is also promoting a drone that can respond to events around a home or business, providing video from “flying cameras” Vivint, a home security company, announced its new “Sky” smart home assistant product that employs artificial intelligence and manages connected devices. More intelligence was a big emphasis at CES, also including Alarm.com’s “Insights Engine.” It uses intelligence to analyse (and “learn” from) behaviour and activity patterns of connected devices in the home. Alarm.com is also promoting a drone that can respond to events around a home or business, providing video from “flying cameras.” Video wallpapers and 4K ultra-rich screens Also at CES 2017, NXT-ID demonstrated a miniature module within a wearable smart band that combines Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and Near-Field Communication (NFC) to enable “intelligently-connected” devices. Which of the video introductions at CES 2017 offer hints of what’s ahead for the surveillance industry? How about a “minimalist” TV, essentially a 2.5mm-thick “video wallpaper” that includes an OLED (organic light-emitting diode) display and attaches to the wall using magnets? (How might such a product impact what security control rooms of the future might look like?) Sony and Samsung unveiled “more realistic” displays including 4K “ultra-rich” screens. Futuristic technology Virtual reality was a big theme at CES, with companies coming out with new headsets and tools for creating better and more immersive experiences. The search is on for business applications – might security uses be among the possibilities? Increasingly sophisticated robots were featured at CES, including robots with realistic facial expressions that hold intelligent conversations. Robots have invaded the security market already, but how will new capabilities expand the ways they are used? (There were even cars that can read your lips – also among the highlights of CES 2017.) Looking ahead to the new year, technologies we use for security will continue to change in new and interesting ways. If CES 2017 offers an early clue, we will have plenty to talk about.
No doubt about it, the ASIS International show is smaller than in years past. And there is (the usual) grumbling about slow attendee traffic (and the also predictable counter-arguments about “the quality of the leads.”) Some of the security and safety technology being featured was introduced earlier at ISC West, but there is still plenty to see in the exhibit hall. Growth of mobile credentials Mobile credentials are a hot topic again, and Lenel has joined the growing number of companies supplying a mobile credentialing system to the market. Lenel’s Blue Diamond mobile credentials are based on technology developed by United Technologies sister company Supra. The use of a cell phone (by Supra) to open a real estate key box has already been adapted to the hospitality industry (with a deployment at Hilton Hotels), and now as an access control credential, part of Lenel’s OnGuard Version 7.3 release for the commercial and industrial security market. The components of the system are a Bluetooth reader, a virtual credential provided through a smart phone app, a cloud-based credentialing portal, and integration with the latest version of OnGuard. Offering a full solution is simpler to implement, and Lenel even has an “in-line” Bluetooth reader that can be used to add Bluetooth capabilities to existing systems. It’s just one aspect of the OnGuard 7.3 release that also is “reinventing the OnGuard experience,” according to Ross McKay, Lenel Systems International’s Director of Project Management. Future adoption Mobile credentials are big talk at ASIS, but how long before they will be widely used? Estimates are all over the map, but research firm IMS has projected the percentage adoption of mobile credentialing at 19 percent by 2020 (according to McKay of Lenel). "Our industry is slow to adopt, but if you show mobile credentialing to end users, they get it immediately, anything you can give them on a phone, they will use" But Steve Van Till, president and CEO of Brivo, which launched its mobile credentialing system at last year’s ASIS, sees a range of possibilities in terms of adoption. Witnessing the fast adoption of smart phones as alternatives to perform a large number of daily tasks, some say mass adoption could only be a couple of years away. On the other hand, in our market, a lot of people are still using proximity cards (despite introductions of superior alternatives over the years). That legacy argues for slow adoption indeed. “Our industry is slow to adopt, but if you show mobile credentialing to end users, they get it immediately,” says Van Till. “Anything you can give them on a phone, they will use.” Because ASIS is an end user show, exhibitors tend to reflect on the changing dynamic of selling to end users. Changing purchasing dynamics How end users buy products may be changing -- obviously the IT department is having a greater influence than ever before. But what hasn’t changed is the importance of creating a system that will keep end users satisfied as they use it day-to-day for years after the installation is complete. IT may be yielding more influence, but at the end of the day, it’s the security customers -- the attendees at ASIS -- who must be satisfied. “While the IT infrastructure and personnel are involved in how decisions are made, security personnel are still heavily involved,” says Sharad Shekhar, CEO of Pelco by Schneider Electric. “On a day-to-day operations level, it’s the security user who either truly benefits or gets truly hurt by the product. We face IT challenges up front, but the day-to-day utility of our products in the market is judged by the security people, not the IT people.” Shekhar says feedback from those day-to-day end users is one factor that makes a show like ASIS so important. “We need to get continuous feedback to guide our future product development,” says Shekhar. “The type of people who do security -- they like stability. They like certainty because it’s the nature of the business. They want to apply solutions that have been vetted, that are proven. Customers can’t afford to make a mistake.” "The type of people who do security - they like stability. They like certainty because it’s the nature of the business" At ASIS, Pelco is showing its VideoXpert open video management system (VMS) platform, integrated with the Optera multi-sensor panoramic camera. The ability of the VMS to display a seamless multi-sensor image is getting good feedback from customers. Pelco’s core strategy is to focus on four major verticals -- gaming, city surveillance, oil and gas, and ports. They devote a range of resources to each of the major verticals, including multi-functional teams including research and development, engineering, product support and marketing personnel. A fifth core vertical in the United States is corrections, and Pelco also sells in secondary verticals such as education, healthcare, etc., although they are focusing more on the core verticals. Education and training Education is an important aspect of the ASIS show, there are rooms and rooms of educational sessions on a range of topics going on concurrently with the trade show. But education is also happening on the show floor, often in the form of presentations from vendors in theatre-like areas of their booths. Promise Technology, a manufacturer of storage systems, is a first-time ASIS exhibitor that is providing educational sessions in their presentation theatre in cooperation with VMS partners. “There is a lot of information in education and training,” says John van den Elzen, Managing Director, Worldwide Surveillance Business Unit, Promise Technology. “End users like to know how a solution is working. They don’t want to hassle with it if it doesn’t work. We qualify all the VMS vendors before the product comes to market. We know it works. We have a good relationship with the VMS vendors and work together if there is a problem -- no finger-pointing.” Promise provides RAID storage systems that are specifically targeted to the security market, and promote the products using security terms rather than IT terms. And they listen to feedback, whether at a trade show or at the many education events they have held globally to growing numbers of attendees. “This is very successful,” says van den Elzen. “People have a lack of knowledge and we look to fill in that gap.” There’s more knowledge to be had, and more exhibitors to visit in the second day of ASIS.
Are smart phones poised to replace all biometrics hardware in the next several years? That’s the bold prediction of Hector Hoyos, CEO of Hoyos Labs, one of the pioneers of biometrics technology who owns 59 patents (pending and issued) related to the field. The advent of the smart phone, which amounts to everyone carrying a computer in the palm of their hand, provides all the ability anyone needs to capture biometric information to use for verification, he says. Breakthrough in technology “Proprietary biometrics-based hardware will go away in the next three to five years,” Hoyos says. “You don’t need a proprietary sensor with smart phones getting more sophisticated. The time for proprietary hardware for biometrics is over – killed by the mobile industry. The technology is obsolete.” Instead of biometrics readers costing “thousands of dollars,” capabilities of smart phones will continue to develop to provide the same level of security, says Hoyos. For example, related to physical access control, the smart phone will communicate with an electronic lock using near field communication (NFC). It’s an extension of the idea we have already seen in the market of using a smart phone as a credential. Many current smart phones have fingerprint authentication, but phones can also be used for other types of biometrics, including face recognition and even iris scanning, says Hoyos. You don’t need a proprietary sensor with smart phones getting more sophisticated. The time for proprietary hardware for biometrics is over – killed by the mobile industry Hoyos Labs has also introduced a proprietary four-finger authentication technology – 4F ID – that uses a smartphone’s rear camera and LED flash light, without additional hardware, to capture a person’s four fingerprints to increase reliability and security for the user. In fact, Hoyos Labs has enabled every major biometric – face, iris, voice and fingerprint – to be captured with a smart phone and applied across a myriad of industries. In addition to physical access control, the technologies can be used for financial services, healthcare, and telecommunications. Hoyas says Microsoft’s three new Lumia smart phones will feature an iris scanner and facial recognition capabilities right on the device. Addressing security concerns “On the consumer side, the reality is that all you need is an electronic lock, and your smart phone device becomes the biometric,” says Hoyos. If greater security is required, applications can deploy hybrid, multi-authentication systems, such as fingerprint combined with a facial or iris scan, he says. Keeping individual biometric credentials encrypted on smart phones is a more secure option than storing them in a centralised database on a server, which could be subject to hacking despite best efforts to keep it secure. Biometrics contained on smart phones is the best approach to providing verification. However, in applications that require absolute proof of identification, such as banking applications, a central database is needed and must be protected. A centralised database can ensure that someone doesn’t open multiple accounts at a variety of banks using different names, for example. Keeping individual biometriccredentials encrypted on smartphones is a more secure optionthan storing them in a centraliseddatabase on a server Protecting biometrics data Three years ago, Hoyos Labs developed the BOPS (Biometrics Open Protocol Standard) framework, providing a global infrastructure ensuring end-to-end authentication of biometrics data for applications worldwide. In effect, it is the “back-end” technology for a range of biometrics used in any market. Hoyos says the framework is a vendor-agnostic infrastructure to support and protect use of biometrics data on the Internet and mobile devices. “Anybody’s train can run on those tracks, any type of biometric,” says Hoyos. “Our infrastructure is agnostic; we provide the plumbing that everybody needs to plug into.” Among the protections BOPS provides for centralised biometrics required for identification are encryption, secure storage and the practice of dividing a biometric into two parts – stored in different locations – so that violation of any single database would not provide a complete biometric. BOPS protocols also enable secure communication of biometrics to various devices, so a person could use a biometric to secure an Internet of Things device without having to reprogram a user name and password. The BOPS framework has been contributed to IEEE and has been published as the IEEE 2410-2015 standard. [IEEE is the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.] Hoyos says several physical access control companies are in the process of integrating BOPS into their products. Also, 20 of the Fortune 100 companies are using the standard, which he says is essential for use of biometric data to secure the coming Internet of Things (IoT).
HID Global, a worldwide provider of trusted identity solutions, was selected by Skanska, one of the world’s project development and construction groups with operations in Europe and North America, to incorporate HID’s mobile solution for secure access to its new office complex in Warsaw. Powered by Seos, HID Mobile Access improves the user experience and increases security throughout the entire building – from the parking lot and elevators to areas with limited access to the public. Located at 173 Solidarności Avenue in Warsaw, the new Spark office complex is not only the new headquarters of Skanska, but a large part of the 70,000 square-meter office building has also been set aside for other tenants. Because the building is intended to be a mixed-tenant space, it was crucial to restrict access to secure areas from unauthorised visitors. Using smartphones for access The Spark building was designed to enable mobile access so that employees can now use their smartphones to open doors and enter secure areas. Skanska, with help from system integrator Sharry Europe, created a new system for building occupants that integrates numerous building applications, including HID Mobile Access. As a result, all building applications have been incorporated into an integrated mobile app, which marked an advancement in creating a more streamlined and convenient experience for the users. HID Mobile Access enhances the security for accessing our entire building" Both Spark building employees and their guests can now move throughout the building with nothing more than a smartphone, without the risk of them gaining access to restricted areas – unless the proper access rights are granted. When users arrive at the door, they simply tap their iOS and Android devices to an iCLASS SE reader using Near-Field Communications (NFC) or Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and HID’s ‘twist and go’ feature to gain access from a distance. Any changes to the user’s access rights are remotely managed by the administrator through a cloud-based portal. Integrating all building applications into one “HID Mobile Access enhances the security for accessing our entire building. In one application, we have integrated all building applications, such as parking, virtual reception and other Internet of Things functionality, bringing the whole user experience to a new level,” said Renata Nowakowska, Innovation Manager at Skanska. “One of the most pressing objectives for facility managers in smart buildings is to crack the code on how to enable as many building applications and services on mobile devices as possible in order to simplify how occupants move through a facility and interact with building services,” said Hilding Arrehed, Vice President of Cloud Services, Physical Access Control. “Skanska’s integration of HID Mobile Access into their mobile platform is a perfect example of how organisations are leveraging the power of mobile credentials and the cloud to realise the full potential of creating a connected and more intuitive experience for their users, while increasing security at the same time.”
HID Global, a global provider of trusted identity solutions, has announced that HID is the world’s first ticketing solution provider to be certified to deliver more secure, lower cost, faster contactless tickets based on an open standard called Calypso Light Application (CLAP). CLAP-certified SOMA Atlas Public transportation authorities around the world no longer need to accept lower security, incompatibility and slower speeds or be locked into a proprietary low-end ticket system. HID’s CLAP-certified solution, SOMA Atlas, is now recognised by the Calypso Networks Association (CNA) as providing interoperability and greater flexibility to transportation operators. “HID Global is bringing a new level of trust to low-cost contactless tickets for public transportation by supporting an open standard that will overtake the proprietary memory cards commonly used for low-end tickets, such as single trip tickets,” said Cesare Paciello, Vice President, Ticketing & Transport with HID Global. “Being the first ticket provider in the world to achieve Calypso Light Application certification positions HID strongly to lead the way to enable mid-sized and smaller public transportation networks to do next-generation automated fare collection.” Contactless CLAP ticketing Recognised widely and deployed in many countries for secure, fast and flexible ticketing, Calypso is an open standard of contactless ticketing, suitable for multiple applications, especially public transportation in which Calypso cards and NFC mobile phones are used. To extend the success of the Calypso standard and help solve the incompatibility of low-cost tickets, a worldwide group of transport operators in the Calypso Networks Association, a not-for-profit standards body, ratified a set of specifications for the Calypso Light Application standard. CLAP tickets have the same security as high-end tickets, such as sports season tickets, but at a lower cost CLAP tickets have the same security as high-end tickets, such as sports season tickets, but at a lower cost than typical Calypso tickets. CLAP is also simple to deploy because, unlike proprietary memory cards, the use of CLAP tickets does not require development work to be integrated into an Automated Fare Collection (AFC) System. Automated Fare Collection System To become the first ticketing solution provider to receive the CLAP certification, HID had to pass the technical evaluation that was conducted by Elitt, a CNA-accredited laboratory. HID has been working with Calypso technology since 2014, resulting in the development of the SOMA Atlas, an OS architecture that combines the multi-application capabilities of the KIAT operating system with the Calypso 3.1 standard. HID achieved its first Calypso certification in July 2016 with SOMA Atlas V1, which proved to be one of the fastest products of its kind. RFID, key management and smart card tokens As the next logical step in its evolution of an open standards-based approach, HID’s ticketing and transportation team in Italy developed the CLAP-certified SOMA Atlas OS architecture to broaden the customer acceptance of more secure ticketing by small to mid-sized transportation operators. Known as the ticketing solution provider that delivered millions of tickets for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, HID provides end-to-end ticketing solutions, including transportation ticketing terminals, data capturing software, key management capabilities, RFID paper tickets, smart card tokens, smart wristbands, among other components. Its multi-application operating systems can be integrated with existing hardware.
More than seven years after the implementation of the Guangzhou Government shared network phase 1, initially built for the 2010 Asia Games, Airbus has been selected to supply further state-of-the-art secure communications equipment towards a new project called go-for-metro in Guangzhou City. Go-for-metro, featuring two phases, aims in fully securing Guangzhou suburb and rural metro lines. Phase I of this project has undergone work to fully secure nine brand new metro lines with the installation of a DXTA Tetra server and TB3 base stations in 2016. The DXTA is a next-generation, mission-critical communication device and the newest addition to the DXT product family. The ‘A’ in DXTA stands for Advanced Telecommunication Computing Architecture (ATCA), which is widely used in all major global telecom networks. Thanks to the new hardware, the DXTA boasts of improved capacity and provides increased flexibility for both Tetra and hybrid networks. DXTA Airbus Tetra server to serve ten metro lines in Phase II Airbus will equally participate in Phase II of this project as they recently won the bid to secure ten existing operational metro lines, and will provide DXTA, and TB3 base stations, and more than 3,000 terminals. The go-for-metro project will make the Guangzhou Government Shared Network the second biggest Tetra network in APAC region, just after Beijing Government Shared Network, also provided by Airbus. The Guangzhou Government network will provide smooth communications in both on-ground and under-ground areas for more than 45,000 subscribers from government authorities. In addition to the government network go-for-metro project, Airbus is also the supplier of Tetra radio communication systems for seven metro lines and provides mission-critical communications for metro users and secures daily operations in Guangzhou. Furthermore, Airbus provided the Tetra radio communications system for the Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport.
MyTAG.io and HID Global created a system that integrates data key management, security patrol and contractor services into a single interface CityPoint is one of London’s most iconic structures. The arched roof with cantilevered buttresses reaches 417 feet (127 meters) skyward, flanked by low-rise extensions creating two 12-story galleria and a ground floor winter garden with sloping, glazed roofs. CityPoint’s 35 stories of structural steel, glass and aluminum includes over 706,000 sq. feet (65,600 sq. m) of office space, ground-level shops and restaurants, a fitness center, multi-level underground parking and basement level storage. The tallest in London when it was first built in 1967, the CityPoint building has evolved along with the historic city, adapting to changing demands by implementing advanced technology to keep pace with today’s requirements. “Technology and tenant needs have changed dramatically since this building first opened 50 years ago,” said Lee Murray, CityPoint building manager. “CityPoint thrives today by adapting quickly to change, and striving to operate our facilities at the forefront of technology.” Challenges Operated by CityPoint’s Estate Management Team, CityPoint’s mission is to ensure an optimal environment for businesses to conduct enterprise activities, while maintaining high security standards that protect tenants, their guests, their assets, as well as CityPoint staff and contractors. Thousands of people pour into and out of the building with each day’s cycle, while CityPoint staff and contractors maintain 24-hour watch over the operations. Among their daily functions, three potential areas of improvement had been identified for the facility: Automated key management. Over 220 physical keys unlock distinct areas within the facility. CityPoint staff is assigned varying levels of authorisation, designating which keys they are allowed to use to access secure areas as needed. A manual, paper-based system for tracking the distribution and collection of keys had proven time consuming, ineffective and inaccurate, resulting in lost and stolen keys on a regular basis. Improved security patrol. Security officers and contractors patrol 280 designated points within the building and an additional 15 points on the surrounding grounds every day. A handheld wand was used to collect a digital timestamp at each numbered checkpoint, with the data downloaded to computers only after the completion of each individual patrol. Incident reports were handwritten, meaning they were largely un-actionable until each patrol was finished. Even then, the written reports had to be cross-referenced with the numerical checkpoint data for verification. Better contractor management. Dozens of mechanical and security contractors on site daily help keep CityPoint running smoothly. A significant operational expense, CityPoint lacked a means for accurately auditing billable time for contracted services. “MyTAG showed us how their solutions integrated with NFC technology from HID Global could enhance the accuracy and efficiency of all three areas with a common platform,” said Lee Murray. Several hundred HID Global NFC tags were deployed to identify assets, checkpoints and people throughout the facility Solutions MyTAG.io and HID Global partnered to create a system for CityPoint that integrates data key management, security patrol and contractor services into a single interface to deliver more accurate information in real time. Near field communication (NFC) technology enabled seamless deployment of the solution throughout the facility, with minimal investment in infrastructure. Cloud-based solutions, including MyTAG’s security management software and HID Trusted Tag® Services, allowed CityPoint to deploy this comprehensive solution using their existing computer infrastructure, standard NFC-enabled smartphones and tablets, and NFC readers that connected to computers via USB. The cloud-based system further enabled CityPoint’s estate management team to customise the interface with their commercial property information, employee information, contractor details and other data to provide complete control and visibility into facility operations. “The CityPoint solution required placement of unique identifiers at hundreds of points within the building and the surrounding grounds outside, in addition to equipping the staff and contractors,” said Mark Robinton, Direcor of Business Development and Strategic Innovation with HID Global. “HID Global offers the industry’s broadest, most flexible line of NFC transponders to meet different environmental and security needs, which made it possible to fulfill the exceptional and diverse requirements at CityPoint.” Several hundred HID Global NFC tags were deployed to identify assets, checkpoints and people throughout the facility. HID Epoxy Tag Keyfob transponders, designed to provide unique identities to keys, were ideal for CityPoint’s key management application. HID Inlays & Labels were used to designate numerous patrol checkpoints throughout the building. NFC Stickers custom-printed with a CityPoint illustration fit seamlessly with the building’s interior design standards, while clearly marking each point for guards to tap on their daily tours. To designate outdoor checkpoints, HID Poly Tag transponders were chosen for their ability to withstand exposure to seasonal elements. Familiar ISO Card badges enable contractors to check in and out easily at NFC terminals. “HID Trusted Tag Services enables proof of presence, with frictionless authentication - which is the ideal match for commercial and private real estate properties” A simple tap is all the training most personnel needed to ensure effective system deployment, while HID Trusted Tag® Services – in contrast to traditional NFC tags - ensured each tap with an NFC device is secure, unique and impossible to clone. Key management: To use a physical key, a user can now just tap a tablet computer with the keyfob and enter an authorised identity. The user is then notified of when the key is due to be returned. When returned, the user taps the tablet again to check the key back in. MyTAG.io generates a main dashboard screen showing all keys that are checked out, who has them, and when they are due back. Security patrol: On patrol, security guards can now simply tap each checkpoint on his/her designated tour with their NFC-enabled smartphone. MyTAG.io identifies each checkpoint by name, and automatically uploads timestamp information and updates databases in real time. The MyTAG.io system records a guard’s progress automatically and can trigger an alert should too much time pass between checkpoints. If a guard encounters an incident, they can use their smartphone to generate a detailed report – including photo or video evidence if necessary – and immediately escalates activity as needed according to preset protocols. Contractor management: Contractors are now issued pre-printed NFC ISO cards upon arrival at CityPoint. They tap a tablet computer to check in and confirm their identities. Another tap records the completion of their assignment, and the card is returned to facility management for re-use. Benefits “HID Trusted Tag Services enables proof of presence, with frictionless authentication - which is the ideal match for commercial and private real estate properties,” said Mike George, managing director of MyTAG. “With full integration into MyTAG.io, the opportunities are limitless to deploy secure proof of presence and other trusted NFC capabilities throughout CityPoint as their business needs continue to evolve.” CityPoint has significantly reduced staff time previously spent manually logging and tracking keys, not to mention time and resources spent replacing lost or stolen keys. Not only can the team account for each key instantaneously, they now have access to historical issuance and return activities to better understand which keys are in greatest demand and by whom. The improved security patrols deliver greater peace of mind for tenants and staff, through more timely, accurate and detailed reporting The improved security patrols deliver greater peace of mind for tenants and staff, through more timely, accurate and detailed reporting. Even when an individual security guard is on patrol, the guard is constantly connected to facilities management, creating proven interactions at every checkpoint. MyTAG.io can track the time lapse between checkpoints, and in the event that a guard does not reach a consecutive point in the prescribed amount of time, the system can trigger an appropriate alarm – from a reminder message to the guard, to an alert for facilities staff to investigate further. This provides added assurance to guards that they have constant communication with facility staff, even when walking tours alone. Results CityPoint reports that the NFC and cloud-based solution has reduced the time it takes for individual security patrols, due to the increased efficiency of digital tracking versus the previously cumbersome manual recording of checkpoints and incidents. Eliminating the paperwork also enables each guard to more effectively observe surroundings. CityPoint has also recognised improvement in the management of their contract employee partners. More accurate, auditable time and attendance ensures CityPoint is paying only for services rendered, and contractors are ensured fair compensation for work completed. Reports detail site visits and activities, providing management insight and substantiation for contractor invoices.
The university needed its access control system to be easy to expand without forfeiting earlier investments Operating a large university campus in a busy urban setting can be challenging enough. When the campus spans dozens of geographically dispersed buildings housing expensive equipment and high-value student work product, the challenge becomes even more complex. Academy of Art University in San Francisco met these challenges with an access control system that simultaneously delivers the security it needs along with important new capabilities and an improved campus experience. Challenges The Academy of Art University in San Francisco was established in 1929 by Richard S. Stephens, a fine art painter and creative director for Sunset Magazine. Opened in a single rented loft initially to teach advertising art, the university soon assembled a distinguished faculty of practicing art and design professionals with a shared philosophy: hire established professionals to teach future professionals. Today, the university has more than 18,000 students and 30 areas of academic emphasis, making it the country’s largest private school of art and design. At the same time, the university boasts a thriving campus life including clubs, special events, social activities, and its Urban Knights athletic program which competes at the NCAA Division II level. By the mid-2000s, the Academy of Art University occupied approximately 20 buildings housing classrooms, offices and residential halls that were scattered across the city. Each location had multiple points of access, and was protected only by basic locks and metal keys. The inadequate security of this arrangement became painfully apparent after a daylight break-in and burglary at one of the university residence halls resulted in significant property losses. According to the university’s campus safety director, Mike Petricca, this was unacceptable for a university that prides itself in giving students a safe place to learn where they could nurture their creativity and put countless hours into valuable work portfolios. To improve security, the university took what previously was a one-man campus safety organization augmented by security guards and replaced it with an organisation spanning 130 employees, a 24-hour patrol team, a campus communications centre with emergency dispatching service, and round-the-clock safety hosts stationed at most buildings. Additionally, the university embarked on a programme to secure every building across its widely dispersed campus. “What has resulted is the nation’s first university to be completely locked down with all access controlled through a single, centralised system,” Petricca said. “Securing all of our doors with an access control system was the single most important thing we had to do to improve our campus security.” In addition to increasing campus safety and security, the university also needed its access control system to be easy to expand without forfeiting earlier investments. Meeting the twin needs for both security and scalability would require a move to a system based on an open architecture that could support multiple card technologies and future enhancements. With this platform in place, the university’s cardholders would eventually be able to more than just open doors with their ID cards, including making secure purchases and gaining access to Urban Knights athletic events. The university installed a total of nearly 260 readers at approximately 50 buildings including 17 residential halls Solutions The Academy of Art University turned for its solution to Microbiz Security Company, a long-time HID Global partner and leading provider of consolidated security solutions including video surveillance, intrusion and access control products. Microbiz recommended the HID Global iCLASS SE® platform, including the company’s multiCLASS SE™ readers that support both its Indala® low-frequency, entry-level proximity cards for physical access control, as well as HID Global’s iCLASS SE high-security smart card credentials. The iCLASS SE platform can be used with iCLASS, MIFARE® and DESFire® card technology, as well as iCLASS Seos™ high-security smart card credentials. Both iCLASS SE and iCLASS Seos card technology use HID Global’s Secure Identity Object (SIO) data model, which represents many forms of identity information on any device that has been enabled to work within the secure boundary and central identity-management ecosystem of the company’s Trusted Identity Platform (TIP). TIP and SIOs enable iCLASS Seos credentials to be carried inside Near Field Communications (NFC)-enabled smartphones in a managed access environment. The Academy of Art sees this as an important future capability that will be extremely attractive to students, faculty and staff who rely more and more heavily on smartphones for a variety of daily tasks. In the first two months after initiating deployment, the university installed approximately 40 multiCLASS readers at 14 buildings. It has since installed a total of nearly 260 readers at approximately 50 buildings including 17 residential halls. Every residential hall and computer lab is now protected, and the university continues to install new readers as it acquires buildings and adds or reconfigures rooms to house valuable equipment and assets. The university has realised a number of important benefits from its new access control system, including documented reductions in theft even as enrolment has increased, and an improved campus experience Additionally, the university has completely replaced the previous magnetic stripe (magstripe) cards that had been issued but were never carried or used. The university is now issuing approximately 65,000 to 75,000 ID cards each semester using HID Global’s Corporate 1000 programme, which provides a unique 35-bit card format that supports just over 1 million individual card numbers for use with standard HID proximity readers. Approximately 25,000 cards are in use at any given time, and card numbers are tracked in the manufacturing process to ensure they are not duplicated. The university’s access control system automatically turns the cards off at the conclusion of one semester and back on again at the beginning of the next, or permanently disables the student’s identity following their resignation or failure to re-enroll. With its new access control solution, metal keys are no longer required and the ID cards enable users to open doors much more quickly, which can be very important in an urban environment. Also, the same card that is used to open doors can also be used to enter Urban Knights sporting events, or make purchases using Knight Kash, the university’s debit program for meals and cashless vending. The Academy of Art University created its Knight Kash programme to be the ultimate complement to the university experience. ID cards are used not just for dining on campus, but also at off-campus merchant partner establishments to provide the greatest possible flexibility, variety and value. The university also uses the cards for a part- and full-time employee payroll system, and is considering using the cards for student attendance systems and other applications in the future, as well as enabling users to carry the ID cards on their smartphones. Results The university has realised a number of important benefits from its new access control system, including documented reductions in theft even as enrolment has increased, and an improved campus experience. The system has also significantly improved reporting capabilities, enabling the security team to, for instance, provide valuable input about building usage that resulted in new building access hours and policies. “We’ve certainly seen a lot of change at our campus, in terms of technologies, policies and procedures, and it was all necessary in order for us to achieve the security we needed along with an enhanced experience for everyone that spends time here,” Petricca said. “With our new access control foundation in place, we can now embrace change and rely on this system infrastructure to support future improvements that will benefit faculty and staff, as well as students and their parents.”
SmartTask’s custom smartforms replace existing paper-based processes and reduce administration Oakpark Security Systems, an independent security business across East Anglia, London, and the South East of England, has expanded its use of employee scheduling and mobile workforce management solution SmartTask having achieved a host of business and operational benefits. The company has adopted its custom reporting package having successfully rolled out SmartTask’s advanced proof of attendance and incident notification solution across its mobile response and manned guarding teams. SmartTask has already reduced administration by between 15 and 20 hours a month, with further savings expected with the adoption of the latest functionality. Meanwhile, the system has helped Oakpark to win two security contracts in recent months and is supporting ongoing customer retention by delivering higher levels of service. This investment in leading technology solutions is also making a key contribution to its top two per cent SIA Approved Contractor Scheme rating. Oakpark will use SmartTask’s custom smartforms to replace existing paper-based processes to streamline certain areas of the business and reduce administration. In particular, vacant property inspections and supervisor visits will now use SmartTask-enabled tablets to electronically-capture information for assessments and evaluations, which are then uploaded to an online portal for viewing and analysis. Easy monitoring and reporting for security personnel SmartTask was originally selected to capture proof of attendance for Oakpark’s Mobile Response Teams, replacing a patrol monitoring system SmartTask was originally selected to capture proof of attendance for Oakpark’s Mobile Response Teams, replacing a previous patrol monitoring system that was no longer fit for purpose. Security officers use SmartTask installed on a smartphone to scan unique NFC checkpoint tags at key locations around customer sites to prove that predefined routes have been patrolled. Information is electronically recorded to the online portal, accessible to both Oakpark staff and customers, making it possible to monitor performance. Following the initial success of the system, SmartTask was rolled out across 14 sites within Oakpark’s manned guarding operation. The company also enhanced the functionality to include incident reporting, enabling both mobile and static security officers to generate notifications for immediate or future action. Using a dropdown menu officers can select from a list of incident categories, input up to 1,000 characters and attach supporting photographic evidence. Each alert is sent direct to Oakpark’s 24/7 control room or direct to a customer contact, providing live visibility of any issues. Improved operational control for security business Edward Smith, Risk & Resilience Manager at Oakpark Security Systems Ltd commented, “We are using SmartTask to support our growth strategy within target markets. It is helping us differentiate our offering and deliver industry best practise, based on our ability to provide advanced data capture and reporting. As a result, we are enhancing service levels, maximising business opportunities and simplifying back-office functions.” Paul Ridden, Managing Director of Skillweb said, “SmartTask is an advanced and simple to use employee scheduling and mobile workforce management solution that enables security businesses to better plan and manage their officers, so they are at the right place, at the right time. As a result, an increasing number of organisations, such as Oakpark Security Systems, are using the software to improve operational control, enhance customer satisfaction, and support duty of care to staff.”