Measuring just 99mm in diameter, the new super-compact 2 and 5-megapixel Wisenet Q mini domes manufactured by Hanwha Techwin are packed with features designed to ensure that end-users obtain maximum benefit from their video surveillance solutions. 40% smaller than previous models, the new H.265 mini domes deliver real-life practical benefits to a wide range of end-users and in particular, retailers who require aesthetically attractive cameras to be installed on walls and ceilings, in what could...
Pelco, Inc., a provider of intelligent video surveillance solutions, releases the Sarix Professional (Pro) Series 3 Fixed IP cameras. Offered in mini-dome, bullet, box, and wedge configurations, these IP cameras deliver a balanced set of features and performance at affordable price points that allow for deployment across a wide range of indoor and outdoor applications, including low light and wide dynamic range capabilities with options of 1MP, 2MP, 3MP, and 5MP resolutions. Bi-directional aud...
Passwords are one of the most familiar elements of information systems, but also one that can be overlooked or underutilised. New alternatives are emerging, and the role of passwords is evolving in the age of the Internet of Things. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How is the role of passwords changing in physical security systems?
Arecont Vision Costar, a provider of network-based video surveillance solutions, announces the 1st anniversary of its launch as a business unit of Texas-based Costar Technologies, Inc. The new company has committed itself to the delivery of the surveillance industry’s best customer experience and to fully addressing ongoing customer needs and requirements. 3 pillars of business “It’s been an exciting first year for Arecont Vision Costar,” said Shane Compton, Chief Engin...
The Physical Security Interoperability Alliance (PSIA) was founded in 2008 with a goal of creating ‘plug-and-play interoperability’ among physical security devices, systems and services. Since then, the organisation’s mission has both expanded to include logical security and focused more narrowly on identity, a critical aspect of security today. In recent years, PSIA has concentrated on its PLAI (Physical Logical Access Interoperability) specification, which provides a means t...
Johnson Controls introduces exacqVision VMS v19.06, with updates that include automatic transfer of video after a server failover, a new access control integration, support for ONVIF network loss recording, improved motion zone configuration and enhanced network security for mobile app users. exacqVision VMS v19.06 The latest version of exacqVision offers Enterprise Manager customers a more robust failover solution. In a failover scenario, transferring recordings from a spare NVR to the primar...
Synectics commences the roll-out of Synergy 3 2019, the latest release of its command and control platform for demanding surveillance and security environments. Introducing enhanced customisable mapping, camera management, and third-party integration capabilities, the feature-rich platform is the most customer-centric iteration of the software to date and aims to make the Synergy 3 experience more user-friendly. The new release will be available across Synectics’ key markets, spanning transportation, infrastructure, oil and gas, high security, public space, and gaming. Automatic camera plotting Speaking about the latest developments, Martyn Rowe, Head of Product Management at Synectics, said: “We wanted this release of Synergy 3 to offer practical innovations that customers will truly benefit from in terms of how they work and their security challenges.” We wanted this release of Synergy 3 to offer practical innovations that customers will truly benefit from" “For example, to complement existing GIS mapping capabilities, we’ve introduced advanced CAD mapping that enables customers to upload and seamlessly navigate their own maps of property and asset layouts. Functionalities such as automatic camera plotting in Synergy 3 ensure that any layout changes (for example, to gaming tables or slot machines) don’t require lengthy re-programming of cameras. This has a positive impact for the customer’s on-premise resources, particularly where sites have hundreds or even thousands of cameras.” Monitoring live footage Camera-related developments in the 2019 release also enable footage to be viewed in more intuitive ways. The de-warping functionality within Synergy 3 has been enhanced to provide an undistorted view of fisheye cameras, offering the ability to monitor live footage from multiple angles of the same camera for wide-area situational awareness. Furthermore, Synergy 3 now supports H.265 compression for all IP cameras compliant with ONVIF Profile S. Martyn continued: “Synectics has a strong reputation for offering end-to-end solutions tailored to specific needs. We can’t make that claim if we don’t give our customers the freedom to choose and use systems and devices that meet their unique requirements. Developments such as H.265 compression, new third-party system integrations, and a Software Development Kit (SDK) to help technology partners write integrations to Synergy 3, reflect this and our commitment to future-proofing our solutions.” Facilitating situational awareness Other capabilities strongly associated with Synergy 3 since it first launched in 2014 are its incident management and response features. Synergy 3 2019 builds on these proven capabilities, with further improvements to facilitate situational awareness and incident management under pressure. Clip mode ensures that any footage viewed is automatically imported to a clip basket Two notable developments in this respect are the introduction of quad view automation and the new clip mode functionality. The former refers to tailorable alerts that, if specific criteria are met, trigger quad layouts ‒ allowing the simultaneous tracking of live action and investigation of recorded footage. Clip mode ensures that any footage viewed is automatically imported to a clip basket, for quick and easy transfer to the incident locker if verified as pertinent. Intelligently automate processes Martyn added: “At Synectics, we place great importance on being able to intelligently automate processes for those in charge of securing and operating facilities in the demanding sectors we serve. Whether it’s to improve conditions for keeping on top of incidents, help users get the most out of the powerful capabilities at their disposal, or simply save busy surveillance teams precious time, we are always looking at how we can better support our customers.” “While these developments in Synergy 3 2019 differ in function, they share a common thread. They have all been undertaken with an understanding of the pressures our customers face – one fostered through close working partnerships and real-world sector experience.”
After strategic analysis of the best options to accelerate growth at TDSi and augment the launch of the new GARDiS ONVIF Profile A and C compatible hardware and software platforms and the journey to offering Access Control as a Service capability to our customers and the market TDSi is pleased to announce that it has agreed to be acquired by VITAPROTECH Group, one of the European providers in access control and security systems and technologies for critical sites. This acquisition continues Vitaprotech’s dynamic and steady growth strategy which has included several acquisitions in the market over the last 2 years. Access control portfolio The acquisition of TDSi aligns perfectly with VITAPROTECH Group's and TDSi’s growth strategy to develop export sales of technological security solutions for sites all around the world. This acquisition will enable VITAPROTECH to expand its access control portfolio For over 35 years, TDSi has been offering a vast range of readers, controllers and software systems through its customer network primarily in the United Kingdom, France, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. This acquisition will enable VITAPROTECH to expand its access control portfolio, to strengthen the Group's export presence and to access international distribution networks in the sector. Perimeter intrusion detection For TDSi, this merger will allow it to speed up the finalisation of its new range of GARDiS products including the launch of Access Control as a Service through the GARDiS ONVIF Compatible Open Source software platform and to benefit from the additional resources that the Vitaprotech Group brings to strengthen its market penetration in markets it currently doesn’t service through the use of Vitaprotech Group business development and sales teams across the world. For Vitaprotech Group's perimeter intrusion detection business, TDSi will become the logistics and technical support base in the United Kingdom, delivering better service for the UK market.
At the beginning of 2017, MOBOTIX and RealNetworks established their strategic partnership. Almost everyone has known RealNetworks since the 1990s, when the Seattle-based company introduced the first online audio streaming solution, RealAudio®. Years of continuous innovation and multiple generations of RealVideo® then gave birth to the company’s most well-known product, RealPlayer®, which is still used millions of times every day for streaming and downloading videos. More recently, RealNetworks has been steadily expanded its expertise in the area of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. “Our innovative strength, quality standards and commitment to high-quality, customer-oriented solutions form the basis of our strategic partnership with RealNetworks,” explains Thomas Lausten, CEO of MOBOTIX AG. Facial and mood recognition MOBOTIX and RealNetworks see enormous market potential for further joint projects and customised solutions SAFR™, the latest solution from RealNetworks, is an exceptionally accurate, artificial intelligence-based system for facial and mood recognition that has been optimised for the challenges of live video. MOBOTIX and RealNetworks see enormous market potential for further joint projects and customised solutions. “MOBOTIX cameras have an excellent market reputation for high quality, cyber security, reliability and direct applicability for facial recognition.” “Our partnership has grown rapidly as we also share the same values, such as a commitment to quality, innovation, data security and building strategic partnerships to generate synergies for both our companies and our customers,” says Mathias Grünwald, Senior Lead Account & Service Management at RealNetworks. “The new MOBOTIX is increasingly developing into a base platform for a multitude of industry specific tasks – Beyond Human Vision,” says Lausten. Identify cyber security Since joining the company, Lausten has transformed MOBOTIX from a highly secure but self-contained product provider into an open and flexible solution and system platform that continues to identify cyber security as its top priority. This means that all MOBOTIX products are now ONVIF-compliant, there is a dedicated NAS solution and, with the MOBOTIX MOVE series, a PTZ camera has been launched on the market as a complementary independent product line. “Artificial Intelligence will play an increasingly important role in all areas of IT, meaning video surveillance as well – and with Konica Minolta, we have a leading technology partner by our side in this area,” explains Christian Heller, MOBOTIX Sales Director for Germany, Austria and Switzerland. “In conjunction with our new openness and our drive to produce cyber-safe products and solutions, we can work with our strategic partners like RealNetworks to strengthen the market and develop new solutions for a variety of vertical markets,” he adds. Video surveillance cameras SAFR facial recognition solutions based on MOBOTIX cameras are already being used in numerous vertical markets MOBOTIX's partnership with RealNetworks and SAFR demonstrates this in unique ways: “We are currently working together on an exciting project for a high-profile European museum,” says Lausten. The museum uses SAFR live analytics at the entrance and other locations within the museum to automatically count the number of people by time of day, using demographic breakdowns, such as gender and age. The same system can also analyse people’s moods. This solution is made possible by the combination of versatile, high-precision MOBOTIX cameras and the equally high-precision SAFR facial recognition platform. SAFR facial recognition solutions based on MOBOTIX cameras are already being used in numerous vertical markets. “Since MOBOTIX cameras were designed as the best video surveillance cameras and SAFR is regarded as the leading facial recognition platform for live video, together, we are able to deliver solutions that go far beyond recognition,” says Grünwald. “Beyond Human Vision means more than just monitoring video from a camera feed. Together with our selected strategic partners, MOBOTIX is creating solutions based on artificial intelligence that make events predictable and that can initiate countermeasures to protect the environment, valuables and people,” emphasises Lausten.
Sensor manufacturer, OPTEX Europe, returns to IFSEC during its 40th anniversary in 2019 to showcase two new solutions with visual verification at their heart: the enhanced version of its LiDAR range; and innovative RADAR technology Firstly, OPTEX provides a way to upgrade its best-selling 12m outdoor intrusion sensors to an app-based visual verification solution by introducing a Wi-Fi 180° day/night camera. The VXI-CMOD will send home and business owners immediate notification of an intrusion when it occurs, and a dedicated app provides access to the live view with sound, as well as the access to recorded pre and post event footage. Secondly, the intelligent visual verification solution for monitored alarm systems will be launched at IFSEC for the UK market. It consists of an innovative hardware, the OPTEX Bridge and a performant software package powered by CHeKT that takes separate intruder and ONVIF compliant CCTV technologies installed on the same site, but acting independently, and ‘bridges’ them to create one, seamless, integrated monitored solution. Intruder alarms can now effectively be visually verified. Display of compact surveillance radars Both REDSCAN series feature extended detection range, up to respectively 30m and 100mThe company will also be showcasing the enhanced short- and long-range LiDAR sensors. Both REDSCAN series now feature extended detection range, up to respectively 30m and 100m. The REDSCAN RLS-2020 is also now Grade 3 compliant opening up new opportunities for indoor applications. To detect and track people, vehicles, and drones in wide open areas, OPTEX will display compact surveillance radars manufactured by its business partner Spotter RF. “OPTEX is excited to be returning to IFSEC in the year of our 40th anniversary,” says Masaya Kida, Managing Director of OPTEX EMEA. “While we are proud of our heritage, we know that we can never stand still, and so we continue to design and innovate new products and solutions for an ever-changing world. Our management, sales, technical, marketing teams will be all present at the show to demonstrate the new sensors and visual verification solution as well as discuss any new opportunities.”
ONVIF, a global standardisation initiative for IP-based physical security products, announced that its Export File Format, the ONVIF specification for the export of video from security surveillance recording platforms, is the new standard recommended by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) for the exporting and playback of video surveillance recordings. In a research project commissioned by the FBI to aid law enforcement in forensic investigations, NIST worked in conjunction with ONVIF to adopt the Export File Format to serve as the FBI’s new minimum interoperability requirements for exporting and sharing video clips, streamlining the playback process of video from different video recording platforms from different vendors. Aid forensic investigation The ONVIF Export File Format will enable law enforcement as well as private users These files are often exported in different proprietary formats, making it difficult for law enforcement to collect, correlate, and analyse the video data, as demonstrated by the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, where more than 120 FBI analysts reviewed in excess of 13,000 videos before discovering key evidence in the footage. The NIST recommendation is published as NISTIR 8161 revision 1, which replaces revision 0. The ONVIF Export File Format will enable law enforcement as well as private users to more quickly and efficiently conduct forensic investigations using video of an incident from multiple sources – both private and public – regardless of what recording system originally captured the video. Export File Format will also be part of new worldwide standards to be published this year by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) on the use of video surveillance systems in security applications, increasing the applicability of this standardised format on a global scale. Technology interoperability “This is a major step toward harnessing the massive amounts of video evidence, produced by IP-based video surveillance systems, that can be available to law enforcement in the event of a major incident, as well as to any user of a video recording system in need of faster and easier access to multiple video files,” said Per Björkdahl, chairman of the ONVIF steering committee. The NIST report addresses technical details as the use of MP4 as the standardised file format “We were very pleased to offer our expertise, specifically from our technical experts Dr. Hans Busch and Stefan Anderson, and have our work toward interoperability be validated in this way by the global standards and law enforcement communities.” The NIST report addresses technical details as the use of MP4 as the standardised file format and includes support for video codecs H.264 as well as and future variants to ensure video quality. Exported video must contain standardised, UTC clock timestamps that correspond to each video frame, with a recorded export system UTC clock time, with a reliable external reference time that is determined at the time the video is exported. Exported metadata information ONVIF is an industry forum driving interoperability for IP-based physical security products Using the ONVIF Export File Format will also provide useful exported metadata information (e.g. recording equipment used, export file creation time and name of export operator), as well as allow the video file to be digitally signed to ensure the chain of custody for evidentiary purposes. Founded in 2008, ONVIF is a leading and well-recognised industry forum driving interoperability for IP-based physical security products. The organisation has a global member base of established camera, video management system and access control companies and more than 12,000 profile conformant products. ONVIF offers Profile S for basic streaming video; Profile G for edge storage and retrieval; Profile C for door control and event management; Profile Q for quick installation, Profile A for access control configuration and Profile T for advanced video streaming. ONVIF continues to work with its members to expand the number of IP interoperability solutions ONVIF conformant products can provide.
Integrated security manufacturer TDSi announces that it will be appearing on both the BSIA and ONVIF stands at IFSEC International 2019, 18th-20th June at the ExCeL London. TDSi’s team will be available to discuss its latest products with customers and partners on the BSIA Stand (IF 2755) and ONVIF Booth (2525) throughout the event. John Davies, Managing Director of TDSi commented, “We are delighted to be appearing with the BSIA and ONVIF at IFSEC International this year. At this year’s event we will be highlighting our new GARDiS security software and upcoming hardware range. “The new GARDiS controller will be fully ONVIF IP interoperability compliant (Profile A and C) and perfect for integrating with a wide variety of security and access control systems, both current and legacy.” Extra functionality and support A prototype of the new GARDiS Controller was also unveiled in April this year and will be available to order shortlyThe GARDiS range was launched at the end of 2018 with the first version of the Access Management Software and was recently updated by GARDiS Version 1.1, which provides extra functionality and support for installers and end users. A prototype of the new GARDiS Controller (the first hardware in the range) was also unveiled in April 2019 and will be available to order. John Davies added, “IFSEC International will provide the perfect opportunity for visitors across the UK and internationally to learn more about the benefits of the TDSi GARDiS range and to discuss specific requirements or project needs with our friendly and knowledgeable expert team. “The event is a must-see for anyone in the security industry, providing access to world-renowned industry leaders and networking with security directors & managers, installers, integrators and distributors from across the globe. We look forward to seeing you in London!”
In today’s market, efficient use of bandwidth and storage is an essential part of maintaining an effective video surveillance system. A video management system’s ability to provide analysis, real time event notifications and crucial image detail is only as a good as the speed and bandwidth of a surveillance network. In the physical security industry, H.264 is the video compression format used by most companies. Some companies also employ H.264 enhancements to compress areas of an image that are irrelevant to the user at a higher ratio within a video stream in order to preserve image quality for more important details like faces, license plates or buildings. The H.265, H.264’s successor, will be increasingly used for compression in the future. Some companies are already using H.265 in their cameras and video management systems, while a host of other manufacturers are certainly preparing for its broader adoption in the years to come. Video compression technologies Reduced bandwidth and storage requirements are the primary benefits of video compression technologies Reduced bandwidth and storage requirements are the primary benefits of video compression technologies. In some cases, H.265 can double the data compression ratio of H.264, while retaining the same quality. Increased compression rate translates into decreased storage requirements on hard drives, less bandwidth usage and fewer switches – all of which reduce overall costs of system ownership. H.265 compression delivers a lower bitrate than H.264, which is relevant to end users and integrators because the lower bitrate reduces strain on hardware and can reduce playback issues. It’s very important that the compression format that is used is supported in all of the different components of a system: cameras, desktop computers on which the VMS is running and the VMS itself. It is also good for end users and integrators to understand the basics of video compression. Having a basic understanding of compression allows users to tweak settings to reduce bandwidth usage even more. Many cameras come with default settings that can be changed to ultimately reduce costs. ONVIF physical security In the physical security industry, ONVIF is working to incorporate into its specifications the use of new formats such as H.265 but is not directly involved in developing the compression standards themselves. With Profile T, the new ONVIF video profile released will employ a new media service that is compression agnostic. This means that it can support new video compression formats, including H.265, as well as new audio compression formats, with the ability to include new video and audio codecs as needed in the future without having to redesign its media service. In the physical security industry, ONVIF is working to incorporate into its specifications the use of new formats such as H.265 Standardisation organisations that are directly addressing new compression standards include the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) and a joint commission of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO)/International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), which is addressing the coding of audio, picture, multimedia and hypermedia information. Other compression formats on par with H.264 and H.265 are being developed by companies such as Google. H.265 compression formats Using products that employ H.265 compression will reduce costs through bandwidth reduction, as will changing default settings on cameras, which are often conservative. Having a basic understanding of compression formats and how to tweak camera factory default settings also gives integrators the ability to further reduce bandwidth for added costs savings and increased system performance. These enhancements will analyse which parts of an image are most important and adjust local levels of compressions accordingly It is also worth noting that H.265 enhancements will likely be developed by camera manufacturers to further reduce bandwidth, as was the case with H.264. These enhancements will analyze which parts of an image are most important and adjust local levels of compressions accordingly. While H.265 itself is ready for prime time, its value as a tool for IP-based surveillance systems is dependent on support for the codec in all parts of the system – the VMS, server hardware, graphics cards and camera. Though widespread H.265 adoption is predicted, providers of these components are jumping on the H.265 bandwagon at different rates of speed. ONVIF is including support for H.265 in its new video profile, Profile T, because it believes it will become the most widely used compression format and ONVIF recognises the need to anticipate that migration as a future need of the industry. The new media service, which will be implemented with Profile T, will be future-proof in that when new compression formats are released in the future, ONVIF can adopt them very quickly. That flexibility will definitely help integrators.
It's no secret that one of the next market segments to see exceptional growth in the United States is somewhat non-traditional: cannabis. The global cannabis market is projected to reach $60 billion by 2024, according to Ameri Research, fueled by the increasing legalisation and decriminalisation across much of the United States. It is estimated that 22 million pounds of marijuana are grown each year in the United States, with 80 percent coming from California, Tennessee, Kentucky, Hawaii and Washington, according to Mother Jones. Unlike other products, this commodity is valuable from the moment the seeds go in the ground to the exchanging of money for end-user products - and at every point in between. Within large greenhouses, 360-degree cameras that show a wide field of view are essential for cannabis protection From seedlings to selling, securing every point within the supply chain is vital to the assets being distributed, and companies are now realising how lucrative this endeavour can be. Critical to the success of the industry is keeping the merchandise secure and the workers safe. In this article, we explore each part of the supply chain within the cannabis market and address ways of implementing robust security measures. Plants, fields and greenhouses This is one industry where money actually grows on trees! When cannabis crops are planted either in greenhouses or in fields, security becomes critical, since the plants themselves are worth a significant amount of money. A single truckload can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, so securing the load is crucial to the process Producers don't want plants stolen – especially high-end varieties that garner a bigger profit when harvested and sold – and the size of the plants make theft a greater possibility. Video surveillance becomes vital at this point and can be used in a variety of ways. Within large greenhouses, single cameras that can cover a wide expanse of space, such as cameras that offer 360-degree views, are essential and can provide more coverage with less investment overall than traditional narrow field-of-view cameras. Advanced technology, such as unmanned aerial vehicles (or drones), are also being used in open fields in an effort to protect these plants. Comprehensive video surveillance becomes the main tool for thwarting cannabis theft and addressing incidents as they arise Transportation and protection Once the plants are mature enough to be harvested, they must be transported to a production facility where they are either dried or cured based on the needs of the grower, as well as processed and transformed into edible products to be sold at retail locations. There are already a range of companies that specialise in keeping these crop yields safe while they are transported: think Brinks armoured transportation used for cash, but for cannabis. A single truckload can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars – if not more – so securing the load is crucial to the process. Losing one of these loads can lead to large-scale losses for a producer. Surveillance equipment that can withstand sanitation standards and power-washing is paramount for effective protection After being transported, cannabis must be processed. In these environments, where strict handling processes are in place, surveillance equipment that can withstand sanitation standards and power-washing is paramount. This requires camera enclosures that are rated for resistance to high-pressure water jets, dust and vandalism/tampering. Since edible processing requires stringent regulations be followed, it becomes more critical for security managers to identify solutions that carry the NSF Mark, making them compliant with standards set forth for commercial food equipment in North America, or the HCV EU, the equivalent in Europe. Many of these locations handle and store large amounts of cash since customers have to pay with cash Retail protection As the final products come out of processing and go into storefronts to be sold by retailers in States that have recreational or medical facilities, there's another level of security that must be in place to protect these transactions. But careful considerations must be made. Traditional security tags cannot generally be used because of the small size of many of the end products, making it more difficult to track with tracking devices.Traditional security tags cannot generally be used because of the small size of many of the end products In this instance, comprehensive video surveillance becomes the main tool for thwarting theft and addressing incidents as they arise. In these locations, a loss prevention or security officer has to be an integral part of the team. Another consideration is the careful screening of the potential employees. Since the federal government doesn't recognise cannabis producers and retailers, banks that are federally insured through the FDIC don't accept money from these establishments, meaning that many of these locations handle and store large amounts of cash since customers have to pay with cash. There must be security measures in place for these kinds of transactions, including the ability for video surveillance to be played back instantaneously in the event of an incident at a cash register. The cannabis market comes with a variety of challenges at each and every step of the operation, from growing to transport to production and sales. Video surveillance and business intelligence solutions are ideal for these applications, and as the market grows, more and more security companies will look to cater to the market.
Video surveillance across the world is growing exponentially and its major application is in both public safety and law enforcement. Traditionally, it has been fixed surveillance where cameras provide live streams from fixed cameras situated in what is considered strategic locations. But they are limited in what they can see given by their very definition of being "fixed." The future of video surveillance includes the deployment of more mobile video surveillance with the benefits it offers. Instead of fixed cameras, this is the ability to live stream from mobile devices on the move such as body-worn cams, drones, motorbikes, cars, helicopters and in some cases, even dogs!Sending drones into the air, for example for missing people or rescue missions, is much more cost-effective than deploying helicopters Advantages of mobile surveillance The advantage of mobile surveillance is that the camera can go to where the action is, rather than relying on the action going to where the camera is. Also, sending drones into the air, for example for missing people or rescue missions, is much more cost-effective than deploying helicopters. The ability to live stream video from cars and helicopters in high-speed pursuits can be used to take some of the operational issues from the first responders on the ground and share that “life and death” responsibility with the operational team leaders back in the command centre. This allows the first responders in the pursuit vehicle to focus on minimising risk while staying in close proximity of the fleeing vehicle, with direction from a higher authority who can see for themselves in real time the issues that are being experienced, and direct accordingly. In addition to showing video live stream from a pursuit car or motorcycle, by using inbuilt GPS tracking, the video can be displayed on a map in real time, allowing a command chief to better utilise additional resource and where to deploy them, through the use of displaying mapping information with real time video feed. It allows police chiefs to make better informed decisions in highly-charged environments. The 4G phone network can now be used with compressed video to live stream cost effectively Application in emergency situations The same is true of first responders in many different emergency situations. Mobile surveillance opens up a new area of efficiencies that previously was impossible to achieve. For example, special operations can wear action body-worn cameras when doing raids, fire departments can live stream from emergency situations with both thermal and daylight cameras, and paramedics can send video streams back to hospitals allowing doctors to remotely diagnose and prepare themselves for when patients arrive at the hospital. How can special operations and emergency first responders live stream video from a mobile camera with the issues of weight, reliability and picture-quality being considered? H265 mobile video compression Law enforcement insists on secure transmissions, and it is possible to encrypt video to the highest level of security available in the public domain The 4G phone network can now be used with compressed video to live stream cost effectively. The issue of course is that 4G is not always reliable. Soliton Systems has mitigated this risk of low mobile quality in certain areas, by building an H265 mobile video compression device that can use multiple SIM cards from different cellular providers simultaneously. H265 is the latest compression technique for video, that is 50% more effective than conventional H264, and coupling this with using multiple “bonded” SIM cards provides a highly reliable connection for live-streaming high-quality HD video. The 400-gram device with an internal battery can be connected to a small action cam, and can live-stream simultaneously over at least three different cellular providers, back to a command centre. Latency is typically less than a second, and new advance improvements are looking to reduce that latency further. Encrypted video transmission What about security? Law enforcement insists on secure transmissions, and it is possible to encrypt video to the highest level of security available in the public domain, i.e. AES256.What about integration into existing video infrastructure at the command centre? It is not untypical for a police force to have an existing video management system (VMS) at their command centre such as Milestone System’s Xprotect. The Soliton range of products are ONVIF-compliant, a standard used by video surveillance cameras for interoperability, allowing cameras and video devices that are ONVIF-compliant to simply “plug&play” into existing video management systems. These mobile transmitters are deployed with law enforcement and first responders across the globe. Their ability to provide secure, full HD quality and highly-reliable video streaming within a small unit, and to enable it to be integrated into the current eco-system that is already installed at the receiving end, has made them a favourite choice with many companies and government agencies.
Whether it is video analytic platforms to monitor traffic patterns or cameras deployed to help law enforcement ensure public safety, many cities are looking at advancements in video technology. Upgrade costs and technology compatibility issues are often front-and-centre when it comes to blending new technology with existing infrastructure. For example, if the city law enforcement officials want to improve video camera image quality, which can improve the evidentiary value of footage in prosecutions, they may look at newer HD or IP-based video systems. Upgrading to a hybrid DVR system Applications include perimeter monitoring, public parking, city transportation, square/town safety To stretch a tight budget, a migration plan to an IP-based camera system could be phased in over time by centering the upgrade on a new hybrid DVR system. This way, both existing analogue and newer IP-based cameras can be hooked into the system. For example, Hikvision’s Smart City Solutions include systems for government services, transportation and traffic management, or any combinations of these. Applications include perimeter monitoring, public parking, city transportation, square/town safety and temporary surveillance. Data capture form to appear here! Heart of City strategy Dahua Technology, a video-centric smart IoT solution and service provider, has introduced its ‘Heart of City (HOC)’ strategy, which is in line with the top-level design experience from hundreds of city projects. The strategy is based on the maturity of five technologies – artificial intelligence (AI), big data, cloud computing, IoT and 5G. The combination will enable the evolution of smart city 3.0 and bring great changes to our life, according to Dahua. A 300-plus camera city centre video surveillance scheme in the UK city of Lincoln has been installed and commissioned using Dahua's cameras, monitors and switching equipment A 300-plus camera city centre video surveillance scheme in the UK city of Lincoln has been installed and commissioned using cameras, monitors and switching equipment from Dahua Technology. The design of the new all-wireless encrypted system was based around delivering flexible technology, reducing the total cost of ownership, ease of installation, lower maintenance requirements, smart edge analytics and remote connectivity. Future-proof radio network design Environmentally friendly aspects of the project included specifying lower-energy equipment, integrating remote support and recycling hardware wherever possible. The council employed independent consultants Lever Technology Group to help them ensure they had a robust and future-proof radio network design. The installation of the new IP full HD system and network is part of Lincoln’s smart city strategy – Vision 2020 – which seeks to drive innovation in the city and harness new technologies to improve the lives of citizens. One of the results is the provision of free Wi-Fi in the city, working alongside the Dahua cameras using the same IP wireless network. Wearables for city surveillance Wearables are another new aspect of city surveillance system. For example, FLIR Systems, Inc. has announced FLIR TruWITNESS, a wearable sensor platform designed for city-level security and public safety operations. TruWITNESS combines video, audio, location data, Internet of Things (IoT) capabilities, and cloud and management software in one solution, allowing organisations to reach a new level of situational awareness. TruWITNESS is worn on an individual’s body or mounted inside vehicles and is designed for any public safety organisation that requires on-scene, real-time mobile surveillance TruWITNESS is designed for any public safety organisation that requires on-scene, real-time mobile surveillance. Worn on an individual’s body or mounted inside vehicles, TruWITNESS includes visible-video, audio, global navigation satellite system (GNSS), gyroscope, accelerometer and magnetometer sensors. These sensors combine to send alerts and stream data to a central command centre in real-time to ensure full situational awareness and global event handling. Featuring FLIR Neighbor Aware inter-device connectivity, TruWITNESS acts as an IoT device, triggering nearby TruWITNESS devices, fixed and motorised Pan-Tilt-Zoom (PTZ) security cameras, and other connected sensors to act upon an alarm event. TruWITNESS becomes a key component of FLIR Systems’ Video Management System, United VMS, which command centres use to manage video surveillance. United VMS combines video, audio, and other related data and makes it available for real-time situation management and forensic purposes. Video analytics for crowd monitoring Crowd monitoring video analytics solutions monitor vast areas instantly alerting police of any overcrowding areasCrowd monitoring video analytics solutions continuously monitor vast areas instantly alerting police of any overcrowding areas. Qognify’s crowd monitoring video analytics solution was successfully used during the Maratha Morcha in the city of Kolhapur, India, on October 15th, 2016. The system monitored approximately one million protestors through 165 cameras installed across city. Smart threshold alerts were streamed directly into the control room while the crowd was building up, so that action could be taken before the crowd density reached dangerous levels, alleviating crowd safety and stability. At the core of the solution is Situator, Qognify’s advanced PSIM/Situation Management solution, which manages a myriad of security systems and sensors, including Qognify’s video management solution, from a newly built state-of-the-art Command and Control Center. Security operators and officials have advanced situational awareness of what is happening in their city and where. Automated, pre-defined Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) were designed, in the local language Marathi, for handling routine security incidents as well as disaster management, ensuring that the most effective response is initiated, and procedures are executed in a consistent manner. Maintaining law, order and safety Qognify also implemented its Safe City solution in Navi Mumbai, a planned township that was established to handle the population overflow from the overcrowded and ever-growing city of Mumbai, India. Together with CIDCO (City and Industrial Development Corporation, the agency established for managing the new city) and system integrator WIPRO, Qognify designed an integrated and holistic solution that helps Navi police to maintain law, order and safety. Qognify’s Video Management Solution controls hundreds of surveillance cameras As a planned township, Navi Mumbai officials have the benefit of operating in a modern environment, allowing them to maximise Qognify’s Safe City solution. The Qognify Situator is an advanced Situation Management platform, and Qognify’s Video Management Solution controls the hundreds of surveillance cameras throughout the city. Role of standards in smart cities “Standards can assist in successfully deploying a comprehensive [safe cities] system with multiple technologies into a single, cohesive entity,” said Per Björkdahl, Chair of the ONVIF Steering Committee. “With the ability to integrate various sensors and data from many different devices synthesised through one interface, government officials and law enforcement are afforded a more complete picture of their city’s security.” Deployment of facial recognition technology Live video streaming within the smart and safe city’s infrastructure means video’s capabilities can go beyond simple evidence recording and evolve into a tool that allows operations teams to monitor and remediate against incidents as they are happening. Facial recognition technology can be added on to any video surveillance camera that is recording at a high quality This can be taken one step further with the deployment of facial recognition via live streaming video. Facial recognition technology can be added on to any video surveillance camera that is recording at a high enough quality to identify faces. The technology works by capturing video, streaming the live video back to a control centre and matching faces against any watch lists that the control centre owns. Importantly, the data of people who aren’t on watch lists is not stored by the technology. This technology can work to make the city safer in a number of ways. For example, facial recognition could spot a known drug dealer in a city centre where they weren’t supposed to be, or facial recognition could identify if a group of known terror suspects were visiting the same location at the same time, and this would send an alert to the police.
IFSEC International 2018 kicked off last week at London’s ExCel Centre. Visitors were lucky enough to experience a rare three days of British sunshine as they came together to discuss the latest trends and technologies in the physical security industry. Many exhibitors commented on how the show seemed smaller than previous years, with stands more spread out, and fewer ‘double-decker’ offerings than earlier shows. Although exhibitors represented all aspects of physical security, including access control and intrusion detection, the show was largely dominated by video surveillance. Video manufacturers Avigilon and Dahua were key sponsors, while the largest stand by far was occupied by Hikvision. Rather than hosting large product portfolios, exhibitors chose to demonstrate how integrated solutions could provide a more holistic solution If stands seemed more modest than in previous years, this may be a reflection of the industry shifting away from its long-standing product focus. Displaying large product portfolios takes more exhibit space. In an increasingly commoditised market, security integrators are combatting price erosion by emphasising holistic solutions rather than products and features. While some manufacturers have responded by collaborating with partners to offer a broader portfolio of solutions, others have invested in building end-to-end systems. Both these trends were reflected at the show; rather than hosting large product portfolios with a wide range of features, exhibitors chose to demonstrate how integrated solutions could provide a more holistic solution to end users’ challenges. Integrated systems approach One manufacturer opting for a solutions focus was security, access control and door entry systems provider STANLEY Product and Technology. The stand was represented by a range of STANLEY brands including PACOM and PAC GDX, as well as technology from recent acquisition 3xLOGIC. The PACOM team was on hand to demonstrate integrations of PACOM’s Graphical Management System (GMS) with workflow management software from RightCrowd, and biometric authentication products from EyeLock. PACOM Systems’ Commercial Director Gary Rowden explained that the stand was designed specifically to showcase all of STANLEY’s brands and partners in one place, encouraging customers to buy into the STANLEY solutions approach, rather than focusing on specific products. The show was largely dominated by video surveillance, with video manufacturer Avigilon a key sponsor Connecting with partners Another company emphasising partner solutions was Milestone Systems. Milestone’s Vice President for EMEA, Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft, who joined the company in March, explained how IFSEC International continues to be a key show. It was an opportunity to meet with Milestone’s expansive community of existing partners, as well as connecting with new partners and end users. Milestone hopes to enable community customers to process more video data with fewer servers, increasing scalabilityIn February this year, the company launched the Milestone System Builder initiative, allowing partners to optimise their hardware to pre-load Milestone’s XProtect VMS software. Several system builder partners were present at the Milestone stand. By collaborating with NVIDIA, Milestone hopes to enable community customers to process more video data with fewer servers, increasing scalability and reducing the total cost of ownership of its partner solutions. The stand showcased Milestone’s latest XProtect 2018 R2 VMS that leverages NVIDIA’s high-powered graphics processing units (GPUs), which can handle up to 2,000 video streams on one single server. Commitment to open systems MOBOTIX took this year’s IFSEC International as an opportunity to spread the word about its increased commitment to open systems. Since the company’s majority acquisition by Konica Minolta in 2016, and the subsequent addition of CEO Thomas Lausten last year, the company has undergone a significant change in approach, all-the-while guarding its core decentralised IP video product offering and made-in-Germany DNA. Lausten was previously a key figure at Milestone Systems and has brought to MOBOTIX a new approach focused on collaboration. Partners present at the MOBOTIX stand included Milestone, Kentix and Wavestore. The company also demonstrated its commitment to open systems by unveiling MOBOTIX MOVE, the manufacturer’s first line of ONVIF G compliant cameras. Visitors were lucky enough to experience a rare three days of British sunshine at IFSEC International this year Security system provider Vanderbilt had many new developments on show, including integrations both within Vanderbilt systems and with partner systems. The company’s SPC intrusion detection system now integrates with Milestone software, allowing SPC users to trigger events and control alarm systems from within the Milestone platform. A further highlight was Vanderbilt’s ACTEnterprise access control system, which now integrates with ASSA ABLOY’s Aperio wireless locking solution. Vanderbilt hopes that the integration will provide customers with faster, more cost-effective access control installations.Vanderbilt hopes that the integration will provide customers with faster, more cost-effective access control installations Reducing costs, increasing ease-of-use Many exhibitors were keen to demonstrate how integrated solutions could reduce costs for integrators by unifying systems on one easy-to-use platform. Arecont Vision unveiled its new Contera cloud-based video management solution at ISC West in April, making IFSEC the technology’s first outing in the European market. Contera is Arecont’s first video management offering and will allow customers to benefit from end-to-end solutions from the US-based company. Since the Contera system is designed to be web-based from the start, integrators will not be faced with the additional cost of adapting a legacy VMS system to the cloud. IDIS was another manufacturer highlighting their enhanced user experience and reduced cost offered by end-to-end systems. Visitors experienced demonstrations of the IDIS Center video management software, which is designed to offer smart user experience controls, and a user-friendly interface. Also on display were the company’s latest ranges of analogue and IP cameras. The IDIS system allows users to ‘mix-and-match’ HD analogue and IP video depending on the requirements of the project, with all surveillance operated from the same IDIS software interface. The mix-and-match approach avoids the additional cost of unnecessarily ripping and replacing legacy analogue systems. IFSEC 2018 presented a snapshot of how manufacturers from across video, access control and intrusion detection are continuing to innovate and collaborate to stay competitive in an increasingly challenging market, without losing sight of the most pressing needs of end users and integrators.
Cybersecurity talk currently dominates many events in the physical security industry. And it’s about time, given that we are all playing catch-up in a scary cybersecurity environment where threats are constant and constantly evolving. I heard an interesting discussion about cybersecurity recently among consultants attending MercTech4, a conference in Miami hosted by Mercury Security and its OEM partners. The broad-ranging discussion touched on multiple aspects of cybersecurity, including the various roles of end user IT departments, consultants, and integrators. Factors such as training, standardisation and pricing were also addressed as they relate to cybersecurity. Following are some edited excerpts from that discussion. The role of the IT department Pierre Bourgeix of ESI Convergent: Most enterprises usually have the information technology (IT) department at the table [for physical security discussions], and cybersecurity is a component of IT. The main concern for them is how any security product will impact the network environment. The first thing they will say, is “we have to ensure that there is network segmentation to prevent any potential viruses or threats or breaches from coming in.” The main concern for IT departments is how any security product will impact the network environment”They want to make sure that any devices in the environment are secure. Segmentation is good, but it isn’t an end-all. There is no buffer that can be created; these air gaps don’t exist. Cyber is involved in a defensive matter, in terms of what they have to do to protect that environment. IT is more worried about the infrastructure. The role of consultants and specifiers Phil Santore of DVS, division of Ross & Baruzzini: As consultants and engineers, we work with some major banks. They tell us if you bring a new product to the table, it will take two to three months before they will onboard the product, because they will run it through [cybersecurity testing] in their own IT departments. If it’s a large bank, they have an IT team, and there will never be anything we [as consultants] can tell them that they don’t already know. But we all have clients that are not large; they’re museums, or small corporations, or mom-and-pop shops. They may not be as vulnerable from the international threat, but there are still local things they have to be concerned about. It falls on us as consultants to let them know what their problems are. Their IT departments may not be that savvy. We need to at least make them aware and start there. Wael Lahoud of Goldmark Security Consulting: We are seeing more and more organisations having cybersecurity programs in place, at different maturity levels. At the procurement stage, we as consultants must select and specify products that have technology to enable cybersecurity, and not choose products that are outdated or incompatible with cybersecurity controls. We also see, from an access control perspective, a need to address weaknesses in databases. Specifying and having integrators that can harden the databases, not just the network itself, can help. The impact of physical security products on the network environment was a dominant topic at the MercTech4 consultants roundtable discussion The need for standards on cybersecurity Jim Elder of Secured Design: I’d like to know what standards we as specifiers can invoke that will help us ensure that the integrator of record has the credentials, knows what standards apply, and knows how to make sure those standards are maintained in the system. I’m a generalist, and cybersecurity scares the hell out of me.We’re not just talking about access to cameras, we are talking about access to the corporate network and all the bad things that can happen with that. My emphasis would be on standards and compliance with standards in the equipment and technology that is used, and the way it is put in. It can be easier for me, looking at some key points, to be able to determine if the system has been installed in accordance. We are seeing more and more organisations having cybersecurity programs in place, at different maturity levels"I’m taking the position of the enforcement officer, rather than the dictator. It would be much better if there were focused standards that I could put into the specification— I know there are some – that would dictate the processes, not just of manufacturing, but of installation of the product, and the tests you should run accordingly. Pierre Bourgeix: With the Security Industry Association (SIA), we are working right now on a standard that includes analysed scoring on the IT and physical side to identify a technology score, a compliance score, a methodology, and best-of-breed recommendation. Vendor validation would be used to ensure they follow the same process. We have created the model, and we will see what we can do to make it work. Terry Robinette of Sextant: If a standard can be written and it’s a reasonable process, I like the idea of the equipment meeting some standardised format or be able to show that it can withstand the same type of cyber-attack a network switch can withstand. We may not be reinventing the wheel. IT is the most standardised industry you will ever see, and security is the least standardised. But they’re merging. And that will drive standardisation. Jim Elder: I look to Underwriters Laboratory (UL) for a lot of standards. Does the product get that label? I am interested in being able to look at a box on the wall and say, “That meets the standard.” Or some kind of list with check-boxes; if all the boxes are checked I can walk out and know I have good cybersecurity threat management. IT is the most standardised industry you will ever see, and security is the least standardised" The role of training Phil Santore: Before you do any cybersecurity training, you would need to set the level of cybersecurity you are trying to achieve. There are multiple levels from zero to a completely closed network. Wael Lahoud: From an integrator’s perspective, cybersecurity training by the manufacturer of product features would be the place to start – understanding how to partner the database, and the encryption features. We see integrators that know these features are available – they tick the boxes – but they don’t understand what they mean. Cybersecurity is a complex topic, and the risk aspects and maturity levels vary by organisation. That would be a good starting point. The role of integrators Wael Lahoud: Integrators like convenience; less time means more money. So, we see some integrators cut corners. I think it is our role (as consultants) to make sure corners are not cut. If you rely solely on integrators, it will always be the weak password, the bypass. We have seen it from small projects to large government installations. It’s the same again and again. Even having an internal standard within an organisation, there may be no one overseeing that and double-checking. Tools will help, but we are not there at this point. I will leave it up to manufacturers to provide the tools to make it easy for consultants to check, and easier for integrators to use the controls. Cybersecurity is a complex topic, and the risk aspects and maturity levels vary by organisation - so training is very important The impact of pricing Pierre Bourgeix: The race to the cheapest price is a big problem. We have well-intended designs and assessments that define best-of-breed and evaluate what would be necessary to do what the client needs. But once we get to the final point of that being implemented, the customer typically goes to the lowest price – the lowest bidder. That’s the biggest issue. You get what you pay for at the end of the day. With standards, we are trying to get to the point that people realise that not all products are made the same, not all integrators do the same work. We hope that through education of the end user, they can realise that if they change the design, they have to accept the liability.It’s not just the product that’s the weakest link, it’s the whole process from design to securing that product and launching it" The big picture Wael Lahoud: The Windows platform has a lot of vulnerabilities, but we’re still using it, even in banks. So, it’s not just the product that’s the weakest link, it’s the whole process from design to securing that product and launching it. That’s where the cybersecurity program comes into play. There are many vulnerable products in the market, and it’s up to professionals to properly secure these products and to design systems and reduce the risk. Pierre Bourgeix: The access port to get to data is what hackers are looking for. The weakest link is where they go. They want to penetrate through access control to get to databases. The golden ring is the data source, so they can get credentialing, so they can gain access to your active directory, which then gives them permissions to get into your “admin.” Once we get into “admin,” we get to the source of the information. It has nothing to do with gaining access to a door, it has everything to do with data. And that’s happening all the time.
Abu Dhabi is a major cultural and commercial centre in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), accounting for roughly two-thirds of the UAE’s economy. While oil and natural gas make up a large portion of its GDP, Abu Dhabi has positioned itself as a premiere tourist destination, with major investments in luxury resorts and business hotels. Consequently, public safety is a top priority — and FLIR Systems is playing a critical role in the city’s long-term safe city initiative. Recently, the Abu Dhabi Monitoring and Control Center (ADMCC) was tasked with integrating all public access cameras onto a single platform to provide fully uninterrupted coverage of the city. This is in compliance with the Safe City 2030 vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and President of the UAE. As part of this initiative, ADMCC launched the Falcon Eye project, where surveillance cameras and sensors would be installed across the city to enable real-time situational awareness, threat detection, data collection, data sharing among public safety organisations, and crime prevention. Updating video management system To manage such an extensive system under the Falcon Eye project, ADMCC needed to update its VMS softwareFalcon Eye expands Abu Dhabi’s existing surveillance system to thousands of license plate recognition cameras and surveillance cameras, with cameras equipped with video analytics and/or facial recognition capabilities. To manage such an extensive system under the Falcon Eye project, ADMCC needed to update its video management system (VMS) software. ADMCC sought a VMS that would provide enhanced image quality, as well as increased storage and integrity of streamed video. The VMS also needed to be able to incorporate current, emerging and future technologies, such as Big Data, cyber protection, smart cameras, analytics at the edge, and automated camera management. Additionally, ADMCC required a cost-effective VMS that would seamlessly integrate with the existing physical security management information (PSIM) without compromising any data or operations from subsystems. Reliable software solution for video surveillance Previously, ADMCC had a strong relationship with FLIR, having deployed an older FLIR United VMS version for several years. After careful research and evaluation, ADMCC chose to continue partnering with FLIR as the industry leader in advanced video solutions in the safe city sector. ADMCC selected the most recent FLIR United VMS release as its VMS for the Falcon Eye initiative. FLIR United VMS is a reliable, enterprise-level software solution for video surveillance supporting an unlimited number of cameras over IP networks. Complying with ONVIF Profile S, Latitude ensures greater compatibility between cameras and the VMS Part of FLIR’s award-winning United VMS platform, Latitude features enhanced cyber security protocols. Its distributed server architecture enables unlimited scalability, multi-site deployments and sophisticated network topologies. Latitude’s open platform functionality provides advanced edge device integration, bringing together hundreds of third-party technologies. Complying with ONVIF Profile S, Latitude ensures greater compatibility between cameras and the VMS. Integrating Latitude and PSIM solution ADMCC upgraded to the recent United VMS version in June 2017. With special support from the FLIR team, the integration of Latitude and ADMCC’s in-house PSIM solution was successfully completed without any data loss. Adding value to the integration was the presence of an in-house FLIR engineer, who provided insight and guidance throughout the process. “FLIR is considered one of ADMCC’s trusted vendors, delivering regular upgrades and specialist support to our operations when needed,” said His Excellency Saeed Al-Neyadi, Director General at ADMCC. “The on-site FLIR engineer provided an immeasurable value to ADMCC.” Ensures maximum integrity and reliability One of the defining characteristics of United VMS is its simplicity and easy user interface. United VMS offers simplified access in managing and controlling video operations for the support staff. For all safe city projects, the preservation and availability of data is paramount. United VMS ensures maximum integrity and reliability with exceptional failover, disaster recovery capabilities" “The use of actionable information through data collection is vital in running such a huge scale operation such as Safe City initiatives,” Mr. Khalfan Al Hassani (ICT Director) said. “United VMS ensures maximum integrity and reliability with exceptional failover, disaster recovery capabilities, and 24/7 redundant recording.” Day/night safety of city and residents ADMCC oversees one of the world’s leading safe city solutions that utilises license plate recognition, facial recognition, video analytics and video management from over 45,000 sensors spread across the Emirate. United VMS serves as the central operational platform for all data of this unified platform, providing an efficient combination of video software and server hardware. By utilising the state-of-the-art technologies and subsystems brought together by United VMS, ADMCC ensures the safety of the city and its residents at all hours of the day and night. “United VMS has given ADMCC a reliable, stable, robust and secure platform for the past six years,” said Al Hassani. “It underpins a custom PSIM solution that supports various government agencies in Abu Dhabi helping the city to be ranked the ‘Safest City in the World.’”
Located at the very heart of Amman, Jordan, Landmark Amman Hotel is one of the most renowned 5 star hotels in the city, as well as a true local landmark in more than one ways. Boasting seventeen flexible event spaces for everything from small intimate meetings to large-scale exhibitions and 258 rooms that are among the largest hotel accommodation in Jordan, Landmark Amman Hotel is an ideal choice for high-end customers of many types. Dahua Technology, a video-centric smart IoT solution and service provider, is trusted, for the first time in Amman, with the job of keeping Landmark Amman Hotel safe in its phase 2 CCTV improvement. Need of a competent surveillance system The other challenge concerned old system’s storage, which couldn’t meet the requirement of local policeIt is difficult for a large-scale hotel like Landmark Amman to patrol the grounds and premises of the hotel relying only on security personnel. Moreover, there might be no standardised evidence for the police to check without a competent surveillance system when an accident happens. There are two aspects of the old system to be improved. The analogue system the hotel was using was not easy to manage, the problem which was exacerbated by the condition that a great number of cameras were broken. The other challenge concerned old system’s storage, which couldn’t meet the requirement of local police. IP camera and NVR solution Dahua Technology’s CCTV solution comprising IP camera and NVR solves the problems just right. IPC-HDW1431S, the 4MP WDR IR Eyeball Network Camera, supports Smart Coding (H.265+ & H.264+), Intelligent Video Analysis(IVS), Wide Dynamic Range(WDR), Smart IR Technology, etc., which is fully capable of smartly capturing the 4MP resolution images in hotels. NVR4216-4KS2, the 32 Channel 1U 4K&H.265 Lite NVR can be served as edge storage, central storage And NVR4216-4KS2, the 32 Channel 1U 4K&H.265 Lite Network Video Recorder, which supports 4K and H.265 encoding technology, can be served as edge storage, central storage or backup storage with an intuitive shortcut operation menu for remote management and control. Compatible with ONVIF 2.4 protocol Easy to install, it is compatible with numerous third-party devices making it the perfect solution for surveillance systems that work independently of video management system (VMS). It features an open architecture that supports for multi-user access and is compatible with ONVIF 2.4 protocol, enabling interoperability with IP cameras. Dahua surveillance system has helped Landmark Amman Hotel find a new way to enhance the guest experience through improving the level of security with reduced property damage and thefts in hotel. It also improved team cohesion and work efficiency of the hotel employees. Furthermore, the hotel could increase revenue by monitoring and invoicing according to actual numbers of guests, and be compliance with local authorities’ security and safety regulations.
The high-performance Predator Ultra HD PTZ video surveillance camera from UK CCTV manufacturer, 360 Vision Technology, has entered service at the National Coastwatch Institution’s (NCI) Felixstowe lookout station, to help protect lives along the coastline of the River Deben estuary. Felixstowe Coastwatch is a charity funded, volunteer-based organisation with over 50 highly trained volunteers available to man lookout shifts. It’s also part of the NCI, a voluntary organisation established in 1994 to restore a visual watch along UK shores, after many small Coastguard stations had been closed. Maritime navigation Felixstowe Coastwatch took over operations at the Lookout in April 1996 Under Felixstowe Coastwatch’s territory is the Deben estuary, whose treacherous shifting shingle banks and bar can present quite a challenge for maritime navigation, as Ian Clarke of Felixstowe Coastwatch explains: “Half of all call outs from the RNLI Harwich Lifeboat Station during 2016/17 were to attend incidents in this area, so it was clear that additional observation of the area would be beneficial and help to make it safer.” Felixstowe Coastwatch’s Lookout is built on top of Martello Tower ‘P’, one of the famous ‘Martello Towers’, built in the early 1800s as a defence against a possible invasion by Napoleon. The first lookout was originally built by HM Coastguard (replaced in 1979 by the current structure), who operated the Lookout until 1994. Felixstowe Coastwatch took over operations at the Lookout in April 1996. Experiencing CCTV cameras “Originally, the first idea to tackle the maritime issues at the River Deben estuary was to build an additional lookout tower,” says Ian. “That would have been a prohibitively costly exercise for a charity-based organisation. However, after a visit to the NCI Station at Portland Bill, I was inspired by the use of CCTV there and interested to establish if video surveillance could be deployed to monitor the remote Deben estuary from our existing lookout station.” “The first task was to experience CCTV cameras in action, so we visited the Port of Felixstowe, the Felixstowe Town CCTV system and the Great Yarmouth Port Authority, where we saw the 360 Vision Predator in action. Impressed by the quality of its images, I contacted 360 Vision Technology for a demonstration, at which we were able to record video from the proposed location of the camera mast.” Comprehensive business case 360 Vision Technology had just launched their Predator equipped with a 40x optical zoom" “After the demonstration of the camera’s capability, I was able to prepare a detailed report to our trustees, setting out a comprehensive business case as to why a CCTV camera would offer the best solution to the issues we were facing at the mouth of the River Deben. I was able to use the recorded footage of the demonstration to produce a video highlighting the impressive capability of the imaging technology.” From Ian’s report, approval of the project was granted and the 360 Vision Predator Ultra HD was installed by STC Solutions Ltd, after funds were raised from council-allocated budget and fundraising events organised by Felixstowe Coastwatch volunteers. “When we placed the order, 360 Vision Technology had just launched their Predator equipped with a 40x optical zoom,” Ian continues. Wireless transmission solution “This was an important factor for us, as the entrance to the River Deben is expansive, and identifying vessels and individuals there would be greatly assisted by the optical zoom of the 360 Vision Predator camera.” With no line of sight from the camera to the lookout tower, an innovative wireless transmission solution was employed, using a belfry tower at a midway point in Felixstowe, where the signal is relayed to enable control and recording of the high definition images back at the lookout station. “Now operators can view superb live images of the River Deben, to confirm the identity, position and situation of vessels in the mouth of the river and if necessary, contact HM Coastguard if we observe any problems,” Ian explains. Seamless ONVIF integration Thanks to the broad integration capability of 360 Vision’s Predator Ultra HD, all surveillance video is archived for retrospective investigation, and controlled via a QVIS Viper NVR recorder. In addition, seamless ONVIF integration into Cambridge Pixel’s ‘RadarWatch’, a flexible client display application for radar display and target tracking, allows Felixstowe Coastwatch’s operators to set up virtual tripwire lines across dangerous areas of the river and shallow waters close to the main shipping channel. The trip alarms instantly alert operators and provide immediate verification of a vessel’s precise location Once crossed by a vessel, the trip alarms instantly alert operators and provide immediate verification of a vessel’s precise location, along with high-definition visual verification from the Predator camera. Also displayed as an overlay on screen, via the Predator Ultra camera and Cambridge Pixel technology integration, is Automatic Identification System (AIS) ship transponder information for each vessel, including a compass bearing supplied by the Predator camera’s head, which indicates which way the camera is pointing. Innovative installation “This means we can instantly identify and position any specific vessel we’re seeing with the camera,” says Ian. “We can also view the banks of the river and its beaches, to ensure that no members of the public are in danger.” Taking advantage of 360 Vision Technology’s any colour and any finish design offer, the Predator Ultra camera was supplied in a Marine Grade white paint finish, and along with its powerful 40x zoom lens, is equipped with a ½” Ultra camera module to ensure maximum imaging performance, even in low-light conditions. This innovative installation has been so successful that Felixstowe Coastwatch are currently looking at other areas of the coastline where high-definition 360 Vision Predator Ultra HD cameras could assist with their daily operations, to protect the public and maritime traffic.
Parekh Integrated Services Pvt. Ltd (PISPL) is in the business of providing high-quality logistics services that give customers a competitive advantage in the Indian market. Established in 1981, PISPL is a one-stop shop logistics and supply chain service provider in India offering storage and distribution services, freight forwarding, transportation, information technology and cold chain management solutions along with other value added services to multiple industry verticals. Video surveillance systems Parekh Integrated Services Pvt. Ltd (PISPL) has established their operation with more than 1,500 warehouses and distribution setups to cover all the major cities in India for their services. With this expansion, IT infrastructure equipment was procured, including IP video surveillance systems of different reputed brands from different vendors. Cost of operation has also gone up due to technical expertise required for each individual system Over a period, it was becoming costly and difficult to manage different brands procured separately at different locations. Cost of operation has also gone up due to technical expertise required for each individual system. PISPL was looking for a centralised solution, which can work with different reputed brands as well as give them a common control of all the video surveillance systems to reduce the technical manpower cost for different systems. Occupancy control system Due to low bandwidth at some of the remote locations, PISPL were not able to secure video evidence at a central location. It was required for any kind of post analysis or dispute resolution. PISPL were looking for an occupancy control system in each warehouse/storage area to manage and control the worker's presence in sensitive areas. It was getting difficult to do it manually at each location with the increase in number of employees over the last few years. Matrix provided video management software (VMS) as a centralised platform to monitor and manage all the cameras from a central location on a single platform. It worked as a common platform for all the surveillance cameras from different brands, which leads to reduction in operation cost. Matrix VMS supports all the camera models of major brands including ACTI, Samsung, SONY, Mobotix, Panasonic, Vivotek, etc., along with ONVIF protocol. Crowd management feature PISPL enabled the centralised schedule backup at an even lower bandwidth from all locations to the central location Using Matrix VMS Solution, PISPL enabled the centralised schedule backup at an even lower bandwidth from all locations to the central location. This made it easy to go through the video evidence at a central location and resolve the issue in short time. Another issue of maintaining occupancy a certain limit in each zone was addressed by the Matrix VMS crowd management feature. All the entry/exit points were covered with a camera to count number of heads passing through the points. From central control room, using Matrix smart client, security can monitor the total occupancy of an area and instruct the team accordingly. Thus, it provides a common platform to connect multi-brand cameras, secure video evidence at central location and control zonal occupancy, which were the major challenges. Control zone occupancy Why did PISPL choose Matrix? Matrix VMS architecture supports centralised / decentralised monitoring and management Matrix VMS interoperable with most of the reputed brands Possibility of scheduled backup at central location even at lower bandwidth People counting feature to control zone occupancy Benefits: Centralised control and management Ease of use Secure evidence Improve productivity Products: SATATYA SAMAS GE PLATFORM - VMS Platform with 50 camera licenses SATATYA SAMAS CAM20 – 20 camera additional licenses SATATYA SAMAS CROWD - 20 camera additional licenses management cam5
On his 2018 two-day visit to Ireland for the World Meeting of Families, Pope Francis’s scheduled activity was protected by high-performance Predator and Invictus cameras from UK CCTV design and manufacturing company, 360 Vision Technology. Specialists in a wide range of leading-edge CCTV, Access Control, PA, AV and radio communications, County Kildare-based Mongey Communications was chosen to provide the additional security surveillance protection measures necessary to secure the Pope’s visit to Dublin. With the massive crowds expected to see the pontiff, the temporary surveillance installation needed to be minimally disruptive and use mobile radio to provide the multi-scene coverage required during the two-day visit. Multi-site CCTV surveillance The camera images were to be used for co-ordination and management by multiple agencies To support an existing small-scale CCTV installation at the Pope’s final venue of Phoenix Park (the largest enclosed city park in Europe), there was a need for further camera coverage along the park’s approach routes, entrance/exit gates, search areas and general areas of crowd movement and congregation. A similar solution was also required for the Pope’s visit to the Knock Shrine pilgrimage site and the Capuchin Day Centre, where public space CCTV was again already in place but of limited overall coverage. Full integration with the existing CCTV system at the 82,300 capacity Croke Park stadium for a papal address to the Festival of Families extravaganza was also required, with communications and CCTV feeds from all locations required to be transmitted back to local on-site control rooms at each location, and additionally to a central Command and Control room at Dublin Castle. At the main Command and Control Centre, the camera images were to be used for co-ordination and management by multiple agencies, including the Office of Public works (OPW), Garda Síochána, Defence Forces Ireland, Dublin Fire Brigade, HSE / Ambulance Services and Civil Defence. High-definition video security to secure Phoenix Park “With 300,000 people expected to attend a papal mass at Phoenix Park to close the World Meeting of Families, we were briefed to provide the very best possible reliability and imaging performance from the additional cameras we employed,” explains Kevin McGrath of Mongey Communications. We needed to be confident of camera reliability straight out of the box, along with simple and fast set-up" He further added, “With this in mind, we needed to be confident of camera reliability straight out of the box, along with simple and fast set-up, and quality high-definition video for forward transmission to the various control rooms. Our very positive experience of employing 360 Vision Technology cameras on many high-security installations in the past led us to be confident about the image and build quality of the manufacturer’s cameras, and product support.” “So, to fulfil the challenges we faced for this high-profile project, we specified the latest version of 360 Vision’s Predator camera, and also their new cost-effective and ruggedised Invictus Hybrid HD PTZ camera.” 360 Vision Invictus Hybrid HD PTZ camera The new 360 Vision Invictus cameras specified for the project employ the latest compact camera modules with a choice of 20:1 or 30:1 zoom and are available with 1/2.8” Sony StarVis or 1/1.9” Sony Exmor (Ultra) sensor packages. Bridging the divide between analogue and IP technology, all Invictus cameras are equipped with Hybrid functionality enabling installation in existing analogue systems and also in full 1080P HD IP video streaming networks. Alongside ONVIF 2.4 Profile S compatibility, this means the Invictus range is not only economical, but simple to install, providing Mongey Communications engineers with a reliable, flexible and high- performance solution with which to enhance the existing electronic surveillance measures for the Pope’s 2018 visit. HD IP video streaming networks An upright camera mount design allows full 360-degree continuous pan and unobstructed field of view Further enhancing camera reliability for this important event, the new Invictus camera range design draws cost-effectively on features usually associated with very high-end cameras, including construction from high grade, hardened aluminium and stainless steel, to ensure a rugged, durable and compact camera. An upright camera mount design allows full 360-degree continuous pan and unobstructed field of view, plus the ability to tilt above the horizon – enabling operators to view targets above camera installation height (i.e. up hills) – an invaluable asset where cameras were being installed in the difficult installation and operational conditions of Phoenix Park. Technical relationship with 360 Vision Technology “Our decision to once again entrust the provision of the best technology available for the project to 360 Vision Technology was proven correct, and we had no issues of consequence with the installation, commissioning and performance of all the cameras - straight out of the box,” explains Kevin. “Because of the condensed set-up period available and challenging terrain of some of the installation areas, we had to act fast to ensure the successful inclusion and full control of the cameras for the multi-agency command and control room,” adds Kevin. “Here our technical relationship with 360 Vision Technology really paid dividends throughout this time-critical project, affording easy integration of all the additional cameras into the control room’s Cathexis VMS. Cathexis VMS Images from the cameras were relayed back to the various event control centres In all, over 60 additional 360 Vision Technology cameras were employed over the various sites throughout the Pope’s visit. With extensive digging and cabling not a practical option, images from the cameras were relayed back to the various event control centres via a network of reliable and secure microwave transmission links, powered by temporary generators and back-up batteries. “The new Invictus cameras were perfect for the role thanks to their low power consumption compared to other similar specification PTZ cameras,” explains Kevin. “Low power consumption really helps when adding multiple cameras to a network with a temporary power system - and meant we could add more cameras for the benefit of maximum scene coverage.” High-speed fibre-optic connectivity High-speed fibre-optic connectivity between the various remote sites and Dublin Castle was installed, together with video walls at the various control rooms. “The Pope’s visit was a great success with no security issues reported,” says Kevin. “Images relayed to the control room from the additional 360 Vision Technology cameras were vital in the smooth running of the visit and allowed all of the state agencies involved to keep a constant update on the movements of the vast crowds drawn over the pontiff’s two-day visit.” “Our long-term technical partnership with 360 Vision Technology and our direct input in to the development of their new products really pays off with high-profile projects like this,” concludes Kevin. “We have many new and exciting installation challenges on the horizon and I’m confident that 360 Vision Technology camera products will continue to be an integral part of those future projects.”
An integrated surveillance and security management solution, developed and deployed by Synectics, is helping to improve staff and inmate safety at a major European Category A prison. The vast site, which houses over 750 inmates, comprises multiple buildings, including cell blocks, visiting zones, gym and exercise areas, and special focus zones, all of which are monitored by over 2000 cameras. A command and control solution was required that would allow operators to monitor and manage all cameras from a single location – the ECR (Emergency Control Room). The solution had to be capable of integrating with a wide range of third-party access control, security, and emergency systems operating across the prison estate that are designed to flag up staff and inmate safety risks – a key priority for the prison authority.Synergy 3 is designed to integrate with a wide range of ONVIF-conformant systems and devices Multi-site monitoring The end-to-end Synergy 3-driven solution developed by Synectics gives security personnel located in each block 24/7 access to video footage and ensures that overarching control is only allowed by operators based in the central ECR. Here, footage from any camera located in any block is monitored, controlled, and reviewed in real time, with integrated GIS mapping displaying camera points, additional location-based data and live ‘field of view’ plotting on an exact site layout. Operators can simply point and click to immediately view live feed and control PTZ cameras directly from the map. Synergy 3 is designed to integrate with a wide range of ONVIF-conformant systems and devices. Hence, video footage can be paired with data inputs from other third-party systems to provide the prison with a comprehensive alarm monitoring and alert solution. Threat detection with body-worn alerts By connecting data from the access control system and information from body-worn emergency alerts, Synergy 3 can immediately flag up the location of a staff member and display footage from the nearest camera, allowing operators to undertake a visual assessment of any potential threat. The map-centric display, teamed with alert-triggered on-screen guidance workflows, ensures that the right support is dispatched to the correct location as quickly as possible.Synergy 3 removes the need to allocate specific blocks/areas to supporting inmates in need of help GIS mapping The GIS mapping capabilities of Synergy 3 also facilitates the prison’s ‘safer cells’ initiative that changes the level of support and monitoring assigned to an individual cell based on the inmate’s risk level. For example, if an inmate is suffering from mental health issues, they may require more frequent staff contact, observation, or in severe cases be assigned to suicide watch. Using Synergy 3, operators in the ECR can monitor any designated ‘safer cells’ and therefore activate/de-activate associated systems including in-cell surveillance, pill-hatch status, and audio logging of conversations with prison staff and from audio call points implemented in partnership with the Samaritans. In addition to supporting those inmates most in need of help, using Synergy 3 to activate safer cell features removes the need to allocate specific blocks/areas of the prison to this purpose, thus reducing situations where vulnerable prisoners might feel even more isolated. Emergency response through interoperability Synergy 3’s interoperability with other systems enables operators based in the ECR to engage precise emergency protocols should a threat be detected. For example, individual doors or whole zones can be locked down for incident containment. Conversely, should the need arise to evacuate a particular area quickly, access control can be overridden to create the fastest route to safety. Synergy 3's workflow feature also enables lights and power to be controlled in response to evolving scenarios, such as disabling lifts in the event a fire or if a hazard has been detected on a specific floor.With built-in redundancy functionality, coverage at the prison is guaranteed 24/7 360-degree surveillance While enhanced safety was an essential priority for the project, the Category A status of the facility requires the highest levels of security functionality from the surveillance solution supplied. By integrating and interrogating data from a wide range of systems, the Synergy 3 solution from Synectics delivers a 360-degree view of all site movement, activity, and alarms for complete situational awareness. For example, integration with the perimeter fence solution and video analytics generates alerts based on movement, touch, and approaching shapes for immediate review and action. And with built-in redundancy functionality, including server failover and hot-swap recording to eliminate any single points of failure, coverage at the prison is guaranteed 24/7. Together with Synergy 3’s operational and safety management capabilities, these features all help ensure that inmates, personnel, and facilities across the prison estate are supported and protected. Brett Longley, Technical Sales Manager at Synectics, said: “Prison facilities are no longer just about traditional security. This project demonstrates that a fully integrated surveillance solution delivers a wide range of safety measures benefiting inmates and staff and helps improve overall operational efficacy.”
Round table discussion
The definition of a standard is “an authoritative principle or rule that usually implies a model or pattern for guidance, by comparison with which the quantity, excellence, correctness, etc., of other things may be determined.” In technology markets, such as physical security, standards are agreed-upon language, specifications or processes that are used across the board by multiple stakeholders to enable easier interconnectivity and smoother operation of systems. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How are standards shaping change in the physical security market?
Finding the exact right technology to solve an end user’s problem is challenging, but the rewards are great when an integrator gets it right. A wide range of available product types, price levels and added features increases the likelihood of identifying a technology to solve any problem. But with so many technology and product choices in the marketplace, identifying that one solution can be akin to finding a needle in a haystack. We wondered whether a vast range of product choices is always a good thing. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Are security integrators and end users overwhelmed by “too many choices” related to security equipment and systems? How can they make sense of it all?
Industry standards make it possible for systems and technologies to connect and work together. Standards enable today’s integrated systems. But does adherence to standards stifle innovation? Does the necessity to interface using an industry-wide standard slow down the implementation of newer (and possibly not standards-compliant) capabilities? Or do standards eliminate extraneous variables, empower more integration and encourage greater innovation? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How does the use of standards either stifle or jump-start innovation?
ONVIF: Manufacturers & Suppliers
- Dahua Technology ONVIF
- Illustra ONVIF
- LILIN ONVIF
- Axis Communications ONVIF
- DRS ONVIF
- Hikvision ONVIF
- TruVision ONVIF
- Sony ONVIF
- Vicon ONVIF
- Pelco ONVIF
- IDIS ONVIF
- Arecont Vision ONVIF
- Messoa ONVIF
- Panasonic ONVIF
- FLIR Systems ONVIF
- LTV Europe ONVIF
- Vanderbilt ONVIF
- Hanwha Techwin America ONVIF
- Bosch ONVIF
- Avigilon ONVIF