Dutch franchisee Leussink Retail Groep operates 7 Jumbo supermarkets in its portfolio.
They tackled the thorny issue of hygiene and social distancing with a solution made up of Hikvision cameras, SmartPole sanitizing stations, and the SmartPole platform for safe shopping.
Hikvision’s comprehensive solution
SmartPole Solutions, a Dutch member of Hikvision’s Technology Partner Program, stepped up to the plate, delivering a comprehensive solution based on Hikvision Dual-Lens People Counting Network Cameras (DS-2CD6825G0/C-IS), their SmartPole Sanitizers, and LeftClick software.
The solution operates based on a calculation that no more than a certain number should be in a shop, depending on its size. This means that there are few enough people inside to make social distancing possible.
In this way, everyone can shop for their essentials more safely.
A large US grocery store chain needed to stop paying costly service charges to maintain its outdated TDM PBX voice system.
The organisation wanted to implement a new IP-based communication solution across all locations. However, the customer was very concerned with the potential disruption and high costs to rip-and-replace the existing CAT3 voice network.
Limitation of standard switches
The customer was relying on an aging, analog phone system and wanted to upgrade to a Unified Communications platform across all new and existing stores. However, like most businesses, the analog phones were supported with CAT3 wiring infrastructure, with many cable runs going well beyond the 328ft (100m) reach limitations of standard Ethernet switches.
The customer was experiencing several challenges and was concerned with high costs & time requirements
The customer was experiencing several challenges and was concerned with:
The extremely high cost and time requirements needed to remove and replace the existing, yet reliable CAT3 infrastructure
Loss of revenue and business disruption during the modernisation process
IDF closet requirements to support the new IP phones in all areas of the grocery stores, given the limited reach of standard Ethernet switches
The grocery store chain was unsatisfied with traditional LAN design and delayed the project to search for an alternative solution.
NVT Phybridge PoLRE® switch
The customer learned about the award-winning NVT Phybridge PoLRE® (Power over Long Reach Ethernet) managed switch and engaged with one of their digital transformation experts to learn more.
The PoLRE switch delivers Ethernet and PoE over a single-pair UTP wire with up to 1,200ft (365m) reach – that’s four times the reach of standard Ethernet switches.
The customer was excited to see the solution in action and organized a no-obligation proof-of-concept to test the solution in their environment.
IP infrastructure changes
In just a few simple setup steps, the PoLRE switch transformed the customer’s existing voice infrastructure into an IP backbone with more than enough bandwidth to support the new IP phones.
PoLRE’s extended reach capabilities ensured that the new IP phones were deployed exactly where the customer needed them without the need for multiple IDF closets along the way.
“The customer was impressed with the switch’s ability to deliver PoE over the existing single-pair UTP cable at distances up to 1,200ft instead of the usual 328ft. The customer also found the security features and intuitive web GUI of the switch very attractive,” said Darragh Hogan, Product Support Manager at NVT Phybridge.
Reduced costs and complexity
With NVT Phybridge PoLRE switch innovation, the customer was able to reduce network readiness costs
By leveraging the NVT Phybridge PoLRE switch innovation, the customer was able to reduce network readiness costs, deployment time, and complexity associated with infrastructure requirements.
After the successful implementation at the first location, the customer modernised the remaining locations using the PoLRE switch to achieve incredible results.
Achieved over $5 million in infrastructure cost savings
Leveraged the existing and proven voice infrastructure to create a physically separate and secure IP voice network
Significantly reduced the deployment time, accelerating the return on investment
Eliminated business disruption as no construction was required
Repeatable, predictable, and scalable
The existing voice infrastructure topology at every store is the same, point-to-point. By leveraging this proven and reliable infrastructure, the customer was able to simplify its modernisation with a repeatable, predictable, and scalable deployment experience across every location.
The customer was able to significantly reduce the deployment time and save over $5 million, thanks to the NVT Phybridge PoLRE switch.
Gujarat Medical and Education Research Society is an initiative taken up by the State Government of Gujarat to improve the Human Development Index in the state by establishing new medical colleges.
This, in turn, will increase the availability of qualified doctors and ensure the spread of health care services and medical knowledge. GMERS Ahmedabad is also one such initiative. Spread across five buildings, the campus has a hospital setup with a capacity of 720 beds.
Centralised monitoring and management - Being aware of the various security challenges that an education hub faces, GMERS Ahmedabad had already installed 400+ cameras to secure the campus. However, they faced difficulty while centrally monitoring the entire system. Also, since the campus is divided into five buildings, it was challenging to manage all at once.
Real-time security - Due to the large area, it was difficult to extend quick and real-time security to various parts of the campus. Being a medical college, they needed a technically sound system that could provide notifications in real-time during critical situations.
VMS allowed the flexibility of incorporating other brand’s cameras and integration with other security systems Matrix offered SATATYA SAMAS as the solution. It is a video management software that provides a common platform for all the existing security systems. Existing 400+ cameras were configured in the software and thus, could be centrally monitored from a dedicated room.
Apart from this, VMS allowed the flexibility of incorporating other brand’s cameras and integration with other security systems as well, like Fire Alarms.
Moreover, with the availability of user-based control, it was ensured that the surveillance system is being managed by the right security personnel. For example, the security guard was restricted to viewing rights, and only the IT personnel was given administrator rights. This assures data security.
SMS and Email alerts for notification were also configured to provide prompt support in case of urgency. Furthermore, features like E-Map enabled swift notifications about the health status of cameras and devices.
Unified platform for centralised control
Instant aid during urgency
The flexibility of future expansion
Boon Edam Inc., a front-runner in security entrances and architectural revolving doors, announced that the Arta’a Arts Centre in Aalter, Belgium has installed a Crystal TQ revolving door, bringing the Arts Centre into full compliance with European safety requirements. The all-glass door also enhances the environment by creating a comfortable entryway full of natural light.
Constructed in 2020, the Arta’a Arts Centre houses numerous facilities, including the Academy for Music, Literature and Dance; the Academy for Visual Arts; the municipal library; a documentation centre; and the culture and tourism unit. In addition to these public areas, there are residential apartments above the Centre that are also accessed by the building’s main entry.
In coordination with Basil Architecture, Boon Edam took on the challenge of designing an entrance solution that would be safe and secure while also complimenting the building’s beautiful architecture.
Designing a multi-use building
The Arts Centre building is six stories tall, with two of the stories located underground level. The residential apartments are located on stories 2-4, and the facilities that comprise the Arts Centre are located on the first floor, and the two underground floors. The Basil Architecture team was challenged to incorporate natural light into the two underground floors while also buffering the sound of a full rehearsing orchestra in the evening for those living in the upstairs apartments. The addition of the Crystal TQ door at the entrance also lent a hand in flooding the building with natural light
To address the lighting issue, the architects strategically placed large glass areas, or “light wells” in areas that would shine down onto the underground floors. They also incorporated a bright and unique yellow colour into the Centre to give the impression of more light in the building. The addition of the Crystal TQ all-glass revolving door at the entrance also lent a hand in flooding the building with natural light.
The Crystal TQ revolving door is constructed from glass with only the most minimal stainless-steel frame and capping. Because the Crystal TQ is the most transparent revolving door available, it makes an excellent addition to any building facade. The door is available in 3- or 4-wing configurations and is easy for the general public to push through.
Requirements for the building’s main entrance
When considering the type of door to incorporate into the Arts Centre entrance, architects had several requirements:
The capability of handling the large flow of residents and visitors, especially during peak times
Easy to use for young and old
The ability to lock the door down after-hours, while still allowing entry to apartment residents
An open, bright, and elegant design to match the building interior
The Crystal TQ revolving door checked all these boxes and more.
March Networks, a global video surveillance and video-based business intelligence solutions company, is pleased to announce a new highly scalable Linux version of its Video Management Software (VMS) that can support up to 3,000 cameras on a single server.
Command Recording Software
The latest release of March Networks Command Recording Software offers unparalleled flexibility and scalability for customers. In addition to Windows systems, the software now works with Linux-based Operating Systems (OS), offering an unprecedented ability to support up to 3,000 IP channels on one server.
March Networks has achieved this scale by leveraging Docker container technology, an open-source platform
March Networks has achieved this scale by leveraging Docker container technology, an open-source platform that can speed the delivery of cloud-based applications, centralised video storage and cloud recording – all elements of the March Networks VMS roadmap.
Using the solution, customers can lower infrastructure costs with fewer servers. They can move toward centralised storage, by streaming cameras to just one server in an on-site data centre.
“We added the Linux option for our VMS because of its superior security and Docker support, which provides the scalability our customers need as well as the foundation for our cloud recording solution,” said Net Payne, Chief Sales & Marketing Officer, March Networks.
Net Payne adds, “This platform further builds on March Networks’ 20-year history of offering highly secure, enterprise-class Linux recording solutions.”
Net Payne notes that Command Recording Software uses a customised OS that removes unnecessary services and applications, reducing the likelihood of cyber-attack. It offers complete end-to-end encryption (from camera to recorder to enterprise management system to client software), with cameras supporting RTP/RTSP over HTTPS.
X-Series Hybrid Recorders
For customers that prefer a purpose-built appliance, the software is also embedded on March Networks’ new X-Series Hybrid Recorders. The high-performance recorders are optimised to support Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications with NVIDIA system-on-chip (SOC) technology.
The high-performance recorders are optimised to support Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications
New 4, 8 and 12-channel versions of the X-Series – ideal for ATM and small retail installations – are now available for order and shipping later this quarter. Net Payne adds, “Our VMS platform’s flexible architecture, supporting both Windows and Linux-based systems, as well as running on our X-Series recorders or commercial off-the-shelf servers and virtual machines, makes it an ideal solution for almost any business.”
Retail warehouses and distribution centres
He further said, “Large organisations with high camera counts including retail warehouses and distribution centres, school campuses, airports and corporate headquarter locations will particularly benefit from the solution’s scalability, high availability and failover recording.”
The platform also offers:
Business intelligence – When integrated with March Networks Searchlight data analytics software, customers can enjoy access to people counting, queue length and dwell time analytics as well as ATM or POS transaction data overlaid on the video.
Compatibility with March Networks’ hosted Command Enterprise Software for a cloud-managed video solution offering real-time health monitoring, and centralised system and user management.
Convenient external recording options (DAS, NAS and SAN).
Remote viewing with the March Networks Command Mobile app or the March Networks Web Client.
March Networks will showcase Command Recording Software and its X-Series Hybrid Recorders at ISC West, booth #12045, July 19-21, at the Sands Expo Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The supplier of loss prevention solutions and retail technology, Checkpoint Systems UK, has been announced as the title sponsor of the upcoming Retail Risk Conference in London on 22nd July 2021.
Retail Risk events welcome thousands of senior professionals in the loss prevention industry, C-Suite executives, international retail brands and academics every year at their global conferences. This is the first time Checkpoint Systems has collaborated with Retail Risk London 2021, allowing the loss prevention community exclusive access to Checkpoint’s expertise and global loss prevention experience.
Risk management conference
They will offer insights into the most effective, tried and tested approaches to managing retail risk. Checkpoint Systems is a solution provider for loss prevention, offering a unique range of advanced hardware, tags and labels and intelligent, data-driven technology for retailers, engineered to deter theft and protect products.
They will offer insights into the most effective, tried and tested approaches to managing retail risk
The Retail Risk conference series provides events around the world, with conferences in Melbourne, Sydney, and Dubai as well as London. As the single largest risk management conference in Europe, it aims spread best practice, encourage innovation and make cutting edge solutions available to the entire retail risk community.
Discussing emerging trends
Mike French, UK Business Unit Director at Checkpoint Systems commented: “Checkpoint Solutions is delighted to be the title sponsor of Retail Risk London in 2021. This is a fantastic opportunity to meet with leaders from Europe’s retailers to discuss emerging trends and strategies to prevent and control loss.”
“We understand the complex challenges faced by the retail industry based on over 50 years of global experience, so we’re look forward to showcasing our innovative technology and sharing insights into how to effectively manage risk through intelligent, data-driven solutions.”
Identiv, Inc, a pioneer in digital identification and security, will showcase its recently expanded visual intelligence and operating expense (OPEX)-focused solutions at ISC West 2021, including its innovative video management system (VMS) and access-control-as-a-service (ACaaS) offerings.
Attendees will be able to view Identiv’s complete product portfolio, including physical access control and cybersecurity, video and data analytics, door readers, and radio-frequency identification (RFID) and near-field communication (NFC) solutions for physical and IT-secured businesses.
Digital transformation accelerated in 2021, driving the demand for unified management of security and business data providing faster resolutions, more proactive security efforts, and robust compliance — a mission made possible with end-to-end security. Identiv will demo its complete portfolio of high-performance security and IoT solutions for government, banking, healthcare, education, critical infrastructure, retail, and other industries.
The latest access control technology on display will include:
Velocity Vision: The new unified, open-platform VMS provides data-enabled security and real-time visual intelligence in a single pane of glass. Velocity Vision allows for complete situational awareness and faster threat response, reduces the gap between siloed systems, and by seamlessly integrating with Hirsch Velocity Software, makes it easier to connect external systems and data for use in dashboards, maps, and investigations.
Freedom Cloud: Subscription-based freedom cloud ACaaS powers remote access and anywhere operations via Freedom’s intuitive, always-up-to-date, browser-based web administration. Freedom verifies the right people at the right time on any device from anywhere in the world.
Hirsch Velocity Cirrus: Cloud-based Hirsch Velocity Cirrus ACaaS allows users to control, manage, maintain, and update their security management system via a fast, web-based user interface anytime, anywhere, on any device.
Expense payment options
Identiv’s ACaaS solutions offer flexibility, reliability, and convenience to OPEX
Identiv’s ACaaS solutions offer flexibility, reliability, and convenience to OPEX and pay-as-you-go customers. Compared with capital expense payment options such as leasing, bank loans, and cash purchases, the pay-as-you-go model is quickly becoming the preferred way to make payments as it allows businesses to stay at the forefront of technology, maintain competitiveness, and prevent obsolete technology from impeding growth.
Due to the greater flexibility and cost-efficiency in the ‘phygital’ world it presents to vendors and integrators, this model continues to grow into one of the largest market opportunities post-pandemic.
Securing the physical world
“We are excited to showcase our products at ISC West and demonstrate how we continually achieve our mission of digitally securing the physical world by delivering innovative, end-to-end security solutions,” said Steven Humphreys, Identiv CEO. “Our new VMS and OPEX solutions allow organisations to take a leading-edge approach to security while being mindful of the customer experience. We look forward to demonstrating the unique capabilities of our product portfolio to ISC West attendees.”
To meet with Identiv at ISC West, visit Veronese 2404 (Level 2) on Monday, July 19 or Tuesday, July 20. Stop by during happy hour, book a live demo, or schedule a meeting with a product expert.
Dortronics Systems Inc., a globally renowned company in off-the-shelf and customised door control solutions, is focusing on products at ISC West 2021 (booth #5077) that provide touchless ingress/egress, as well as a new 9-door interlock controller.
Touchless door control solutions
All of Dortronics’ product design and manufacturing operations are located at the company’s Sag Harbor, NY headquarters, which gives the company a unique ability to custom-fabricate a wide range of door control products with fast turn-around times.
“Dortronics specialises in delivering products with the performance, quality and often customised features, and aesthetics that installers need, with fast turn-around times and at the right price,” said Bryan Sanderford, National Sales Manager of Dortronics Systems, Inc.
48900 Series PLC interlock controller
Our 48900 Series PLC interlock controller, which was designed to answer user demand for a solution that is easy to install"
Bryan Sanderford adds, “Our 48900 Series PLC interlock controller, which was designed to answer user demand for a solution that is easy to install and cost effective. It can be used in retail environments for high-value merchandise like jewellery, in cannabis dispensaries, or in clean room environments in bio-tech labs or pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities.”
He further stated, “In addition, Dortronics can help facilities implement fast and highly cost-effective solutions to help combat the spread of infection and viruses, with the 5278 Touchless Proximity Switch and 6612 Request to Exit Motion Sensing Door Release. Door surfaces, including handles, bars, and knobs, are vulnerable areas for disease transmission. Our touchless door control solutions deliver a convenient and extremely cost-effective way to help keep people safe,”
Dortronics products on exhibit at ISC West 2021
Attendees of ISC West 2021 can view the products from Dortronics at the company’s booth # 5077. The products on exhibit at the booth include:
Dortronics’ 48900 PLC interlock controller is a cost-effective solution for implementing door interlock and mantrap systems with up to nine doors. In operation, unlocking or opening one door automatically secures other designated doors within the Interlock group. The fully integrated single-board solution provides installers with complete control of all operating and configuration options, without the need for and expense of complex software. The 48900 Series PLC interlock controller integrates with virtually any access control system utilising dry contacts.
The 5278 Touchless Proximity Switch utilises optical infrared technology and the embedded sensors pick up motion within a 4-in. range. A simple wave of the hand activates the switch and no hand contact is required. The 5278 greatly decreases the potential to spread contagious diseases, since no actual hand contact is required to activate. These switches are often utilised with electronic locks and automatic door operators. The 5278’s illuminated LED ring allows for visibility under low-light conditions.
Dortronics’ 6612 Request to Exit Motion Sensing Door Release provides safe and immediate hands-free door release and reliable fail-safe operation. It offers fast and accurate detection with easy field adjustments, plus range and sensitivity controls to assure maximum reliability. Dual relay outputs are available to redundantly cut power to the electromagnetic lock, while simultaneously signaling an access control system to unlock the 6612’s attractive, slim housing is ideal for mounting the unit inconspicuously above any door.
COVID restrictions across the UK are slowly easing and many public venues, including stadiums, are beginning to reopen following a year of closures and uncertainty. According to recent ONS figures, criminal offences – excluding fraud and computer misuse – dropped significantly during the lockdown periods of 2020.
In fact, 25% less crime was reported in April 2020 compared to the same month in 2019. However, as lockdown measures eased each time, crime levels quickly crept up, sadly emphasising the remaining very real threat of theft, terrorism, and random acts of violence.
Considering protective measures
These stats reiterate just how crucial it is for venue owners to consider protective measures to ensure the public can enjoy the site, or space, safely. To support this, the government launched a consultation in February, on newly proposed anti-terrorism legislation to help better protect the general public when they visit public venues. The Protect Duty Bill builds on ‘Martyn’s Law’, legislation campaigned for by the mother of one of the victims of the 2017 Manchester Arena attack.
The consultation will consider ways of developing robust security measures in public areas
The consultation will consider ways of developing robust security measures in public areas. Currently, there is no legal obligation for venue operators and owners of public locations to take the responsibility of protecting the public. This Bill will ensure they are liable and certify they take steps to assess and mitigate the security risks.
Achieving improved security
Publicly accessible locations are any spaces the general public have permission to enter. This comprises of three main categories: public venues with a capacity of over 100 people, e.g., entertainment venues, tourist attractions, and shopping centres; large organisations like retail or entertainment chains with a minimum of 250 staff; and public spaces such as parks, beaches, and thoroughfares.
Public spaces are significantly tougher to protect, and the government is intent on exploring the most effective way to achieve improved security, alongside the parties responsible for these locations. This means establishing responsibility for safety in these spaces, considering what the reasonable expectations are, and the potential role played by legislation in mitigating the issues.
Providing security framework
Measures must be put in place to ensure they’re ready to take appropriate action at any time
It’s impossible to predict or prevent all terrorist attacks, so any publicly accessible location has the potential to be a target. Measures must be put in place to ensure they’re ready to take appropriate action at any time, should an incident take place.
The consultation aims to provide a security framework to help venues be prepared, by considering the adequacy of adopted security measures, systems, and processes. The consultation document includes a list of recommendations for venues:
Be alert to suspicious behaviours, engage the person in a welcoming and helpful manner, or report them to the police.
Be alert to abandoned bags.
Be security-minded, especially online. Avoid providing specific information that could aid a terrorist, for example, floor plans with security details.
Encourage and enable a security culture.
Complete and provide ACT (Action Counters Terrorism) Awareness e-learning.
Have a clear action plan. How would you respond to an incident inside or outside your site?
Periodically review and refresh the risk assessment.
The framework comprises of three key points that should be strongly considered for all spaces and organisations:
Completing a risk assessment – This involves understanding potential terrorist motivations, targets, type of attack, and how those motivations and methodologies might change or evolve.
A systemic approach to security – It’s vital to think of security as a combination of physical and behavioural interventions to ensure a far more secure area or venue. Physical measures such as fences, bollards, CCTV, and blast-resistant glazing should be installed alongside a security-minded culture. Vigilance should be encouraged and the appropriate training offered to staff involved in the day-to-day running of the establishment.
Investigate the ins and outs – while it may be tempting to choose a product and hope for the best, it’s crucial to investigate further to ensure your system doesn’t conflict with other safety measures, including health, safety, and fire regulations.
Practical preparedness measures
Venues should also consider a ‘reasonably practicable’ organisational preparedness system
To meet the terms, be sure to use all the information and guidance provided by the government, and police services. The guidance is designed to help realise the risks, and the potential impact they could have on people and property. These will vary per site as each venue is unique and will have a specific purpose which will influence the security measures required.
Venues should also consider a ‘reasonably practicable’ organisational preparedness system. This doesn’t mean that all employees have to become security staff, but rather providing training and planning so that everyone knows how to react quickly in case of an emergency. First and foremost, the government is offering advice on understanding threats and attack methods, practical preparedness measures, and how to stay vigilant and plan for incidents. There are also plans for a new digital platform to be launched later this year for advice and training purposes.
In addition to this, sectoral and regional engagement days have been outlined in the proposal, with updates and revisions to training and e-learning programmes. An app devoted to ACT was launched in March 2020, and the government authorities Career Transition Partnership (CTP) and Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) are also providing advice.
Organisations that specialise in delivering and supporting security solutions can help owners
There are plans for the government and businesses to have increased engagement with the security industry. Organisations that specialise in delivering and supporting security solutions can help owners and operators of publicly accessible locations comply with the Protect Duty. It’s becoming more important than ever before to ensure the market can provide sufficient high-quality products, services, and expert information to those who require it.
Maintaining appropriate standards
The government may consider introducing new schemes to promote and maintain appropriate standards such as accredited training and approved contractor schemes or regulation, in addition to existing initiatives. A renewed focus on integrated security in public venues is hugely encouraging. We have demonstrated for years that it is very possible to make a site both secure and aesthetically pleasing, in keeping with its existing surroundings.
Furthermore, in many cases security can positively enhance user experience. Many visitors feel reassured by carefully integrated physical security when they attend large scale events, meaning they’ll visit again. Do this in a hostile way and people will be put off. Robust protection in these venues and spaces is all about achieving a careful balance, and with the right guidance and fit-for-purpose solutions, we can help to create a safer spaces for everyone.
Supermarket employees have been the hidden key workers of the past year, keeping shelves stocked and queues under control as panic buying gripped the nation. As a result of being expected to enforce face covering and social distancing regulations, they also been asked to act as de-facto security guards alongside their existing duties. This is problematic as many employees have never had to deal with this kind of responsibility before, let alone received any conflict de-escalation training.
In order to maintain the safety and security of their staff retailers must take additional steps to uphold their duty of care, with the NPCC recently specifying that it is the responsibility of retailers ‘to manage entry to their stores and compliance with the law while customers are inside’. Supermarkets in particular need to be aware of this requirement, as the big four recently announced that their employees would now be challenging customers shopping in groups and those not wearing masks.
Verbal abuse from the public
Crime against retail employees has already been a major issue over the course of the pandemic, confirmed by research from the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers that found 90% of retail staff in the UK experienced verbal abuse last year. The Co-op has recently been vocal about the effects of the pandemic and lockdown-related frustrations on its employees.90% of retail staff in the UK experienced verbal abuse last year The supermarket reported a 140% increase in crime within its stores over the past year, with many of the 200,000 cases related to verbal and physical abuse experienced by employees. Jo Whitfield, Co-op Food chief executive, confirmed that the number of issues has already increased drastically as a result of staff enforcing COVID-secure guidelines.
So, what steps must retailers take to ensure their duty of care remains intact as employees take on new enforcement responsibilities? Introducing real-time surveillance technology to support security guards and shop floor employees alike is vital.
Bolstering front line defences
Security guards posted at supermarket entrances are the first line of defence against shoppers determined to break the rules. However, they are now being pulled in multiple directions with queues to monitor and occupancy to manually keep track of, along with the usual security alarms to respond to. With one person usually posted at the entrance at any one time it’s simply impossible to have eyes everywhere, which is where automated video surveillance comes in. COVID-specific technologies, such as mask detection and occupancy management systems, are now the golden bullet to retail safety and security.Mask detection and occupancy management surveillance tools can automatically alert a shopper
Mask detection and occupancy management surveillance tools can automatically alert a shopper whether or not they are allowed to enter the store on their approach to the door. The system surveys the person and a screen will automatically display different instructions depending on the situation: whether they must put a mask on before they enter, wait until capacity is low enough to enable social distancing or, if the previous criteria are fulfilled, that they are free to enter.
This stand-off technology minimises the need for contact between security personnel and shoppers, allowing security guards to complete their usual duties, safe in the knowledge that the store is being managed in a COVID-secure way. With a hands-off approach enabled by surveillance technology, the potential for tense confrontation is greatly diminished as customers will usually comply to the reminder shown to them and put on a mask or wait without further prompting from staff. With security personnel able to better focus their attention on the stubborn rule-breakers,It is crucial that retailers choose a solution embedded in real-time connectivity this responsibility will no longer land with staff on the shop floor who are often ill-equipped to deal with this situation.
It is crucial that retailers choose a solution embedded in real-time connectivity that will allow all store entrances to be screened simultaneously. Nobody can be in multiple places at once, but this connectivity allows alerts to be streamed instantly to any connected device that can be monitored by just one employee, meaning they can review the alerts that require their attention without needing to be physically present or re-tasked away from their day-to-day duties.
Instant reassurance with body worn tech
As a customer-facing role, there can be no guarantee that shop workers will never experience a potentially violent confrontation with a customer, which is where the presence of live streaming body worn cameras can help. While they may not always be trained to de-escalate a risky situation, being able to discreetly call for assistance can provide the reassurance employees need to feel safe and supported at all times. If an employee asks a customer to put a mask on while they’re in the store or step back from another shopper and the situation turns abusive – verbally or physically – a live streaming-enabled body worn camera can be triggered to stream a live audio and video feed back to a central control room manned by trained security personnel.A live streaming-enabled body worn camera can be triggered
This real-time footage gives security staff exceptional situational awareness, allowing them to fully assess the situation and decide on the best course of action to support the employee in distress, whether that is going to the scene to diffuse the situation or contacting the police in more serious circumstances.
Bolstering front line security
This goes one step further than record-only body worn cameras, the capabilities of which these next generation devices match and exceed. Record-only cameras are well-suited to provide after-the-fact evidence if a customer interaction turns sour, but they do little to provide reassurance to out of depth employees in the moment.
The duty of care grocery retailers must provide to their employees has never been more important, with staff taking on new mask and social distancing enforcement responsibilities and managing interactions with frustrated customers. Bolstering front line security and giving staff extra reassurances with the introduction of real-time video surveillance technology is a crucial step for retailers striving to keep employees and shoppers safe during these challenging times.
The explosion of artificial intelligence used to enhance business processes, propel innovative products, and further automation has touched essentially every industry to date. The security sector, notable for its maturity and complexity, is not exempt from the AI tidal wave.
In fact, quite the opposite, the security sector and more specifically the domain of video surveillance have seen an emergence of AI-powered solutions both hardware and software.
The widespread adoption of IP cameras, cloud computing capacities, and smart sensors have paved the way for new AI products and solutions to function at scale.
AI-powered video analytics
One application of artificial intelligence for the video surveillance sector is the use of video analytic solutions to analyse video streams in order to extract pre-determined objects, behaviours, or situations.
To give some examples, AI video analytics can be used to monitor perimeter crossing for border control, detect fevers or masks in airports or public spaces, arms detection in casinos, or be used to filter out alarms triggered by benign movements versus real intrusions.
This application of artificial intelligence leans on its specific branch, machine learning, which uses a complex series of AI models to analyse the content of the video flow, autonomously identifying and classifying the videos according to predefined rules.
AI video analytics yields promising benefits, a reduction in operational costs, and an increase in safety and a decrease in risk When AI video analytics are used effectively, they yield very promising benefits. A jump in video flow analysis from an average of 10% by humans to 100%, a reduction in operational costs, and an increase in safety and a decrease in risk.
The use of AI video analytics for surveillance sounds simple enough, however, there are several perceived factors inhibiting security organisations from adopting the technology.
Adopting AI into your video surveillance operation
The security industry is capital intensive, complex in its IT structure, and diverse in situational business needs.
Therefore, resulting in a perception of high effort, time and costs required to successfully integrate AI into your video surveillance operation. However, these effort constraints can be debunked due to the flexibility of video analytic solutions.
Three areas that deter security organisations from adopting AI
A surveillance operation contains a network of cameras that film with a range of video qualities.
AI video analytics can analyse a range of videos from low to high resolution in thermal, infrared and visible formats AI video analytics often operate on smart cameras that have the appropriate video image quality for the capacity of content analysis. The costs involved in overhauling legacy camera systems, converting videos into higher quality, or waiting until the current camera network is ready to be replaced in order to integrate AI is expensive, time-consuming, and often unfeasible.
However, not all AI video analytic solutions need to be deployed on edge with smart cameras. Instead, video analytics can be deployed both directly on to the camera or have server-based integration maintaining and scaling to your existing camera network. AI video analytics can also analyse a range of videos from low to high resolution in a variety of formats: thermal, infrared, visible.
Complex IT structure
A single central command centre or in-house security network operates in a multi-manufacturer environment. This means cameras, video management systems, and technology partners can be provided by several manufacturers therefore increasing the complexity of successful IT workflows and integrations.
Theft or perimeter infringement can take place in a matter of minutes, therefore the transfer of information between solutions is required to function at top speed. To overcome this complexity, the successful integration of solutions in a multi-manufacturer environment is assured through industry enforced standards set by non-profit organisations.
This allows for third-party solutions such as AI video analytics to be easily integrated into the bulk of software and hardware technologies.
Diversity in security needs
To obtain high performance in a diverse security setting is inherently built into AI video analytic machine The objective of a surveillance operation can vary greatly from one organisation to another. Retailers prioritise theft detection, while city governments may be concerned about arms detection or people counting.
The capacity for AI to function with high performance, meanwhile adapting to several organisation’s security needs requires algorithms to be trained accordingly. To obtain high performance in a diverse security setting is inherently built into how AI video analytic machine learning model’s function.
AI can be trained to adapt to different environments and uses progressive learning to increase performance overtime. A collaborative effort between security experts, data scientists and business strategists will ensure high performance and an appropriate application of AI to fit each organisation’s specific needs.
Surveillance innovation moving forward
While for some video surveillance organisations, the costs and time associated with successfully integrating AI into their network may seem daunting, there are ways to adapt new technology into an existing operation with minimal effort.
The emerging presence of smart cameras and IoT products will only accelerate the adoption of AI moving forward. If your organisation is looking to enhance its operation with emerging technologies, now can be the time.
A new generation of video cameras is poised to boost capabilities dramatically at the edge of the IP network, including more powerful artificial intelligence (AI) and higher resolutions, and paving the way for new applications that would have previously been too expensive or complex.
Technologies at the heart of the coming new generation of video cameras are Ambarella’s newest systems on chips (SoCs). Ambarella’s CV5S and CV52S product families are bringing a new level of on-camera AI performance and integration to multi-imager and single-imager IP cameras. Both of these SoCs are manufactured in the ‘5 nm’ manufacturing process, bringing performance improvements and power savings, compared to the previous generation of SoCs manufactured at ‘10nm’.
CV5S and CV52S AI-powered SoCs
The CV5S, designed for multi-imager cameras, is able to process, encode and perform advanced AI on up to four imagers at 4Kp30 resolution, simultaneously and at less than 5 watts. This enables multi-headed camera designs with up to four 4K imagers looking at different portions of a scene, as well as very high-resolution, single-imager cameras of up to 32 MP resolution and beyond.
The CV52S, designed for single-imager cameras with very powerful onboard AI, is the next-generation of the company’s successful CV22S mainstream 4K camera AI chip. This new SoC family quadruples the AI processing performance, while keeping the same low power consumption of less than 3 watts for 4Kp60 encoding with advanced AI processing.
Faster and ubiquitous AI capabilities
Ambarella’s newest AI vision SoCs for security, the CV5S and CV52S, are competitive solutions"
“Security system designers desire higher resolutions, increasing channel counts, and ever faster and more ubiquitous AI capabilities,” explains John Lorenz, Senior Technology and Market Analyst, Computing, at Yole Développement (Yole), a French market research firm.
John Lorenz adds, “Ambarella’s newest AI vision SoCs for security, the CV5S and CV52S, are competitive solutions for meeting the growing demands of the security IC (integrated circuit) sector, which our latest report forecasts to exceed US$ 4 billion by 2025, with two-thirds of that being chips with AI capabilities.”
Edge AI vision processors
Ambarella’s new CV5S and CV52S edge AI vision processors enable new classes of cameras that would not have been possible in the past, with a single SoC architecture. For example, implementing a 4x 4K multi-imager with AI would have traditionally required at least two SoCs (at least one for encoding and one for AI), and the overall power consumption would have made those designs bulky and prohibitively expensive.
By reducing the number of required SoCs, the CV5S enables advanced camera designs such as AI-enabled 4x 4K imagers at price points much lower than would have previously been possible. “What we are usually trying to do with our SoCs is to keep the price points similar to the previous generations, given that camera retail prices tend to be fairly fixed,” said Jerome Gigot, Ambarella's Senior Director of Marketing.
4K multi-imager cameras
“However, higher-end 4K multi-imager cameras tend to retail for thousands of dollars, and so even though there will be a small premium on the SoC for the 2X improvement in performance, this will not make a significant impact to the final MSRP of the camera,” adds Jerome Gigot.
In addition, the overall system cost might go down, Gigot notes, compared to what could be built today because there is no longer a need for external chips to perform AI, or extra components for power dissipation.
The new chips will be available in the second half of 2021, and it typically takes about 12 to 18 months for Ambarella’s customers (camera manufacturers) to produce final cameras. Therefore, the first cameras, based on these new SoCs, should hit the market sometime in the second half of 2022.
Reference boards for camera manufacturers
The software on these new SoCs is an evolution of our unified Linux SDK"
As with Ambarella’s previous generations of edge AI vision SoCs for security, the company will make available reference boards to camera manufacturers soon, allowing them to develop their cameras based on the new CV5S and CV52S SoC families.
“The software on these new SoCs is an evolution of our unified Linux SDK that is already available on our previous generations SoCs, which makes the transition easy for our customers,” said Jerome Gigot.
Better crime detection
Detecting criminals in a crowd, using face recognition and/or licence plate recognition, has been a daunting challenge for security, and one the new chips will help to address.
“Actually, these applications are one of the main reasons why Ambarella is introducing these two new SoC families,” said Jerome Gigot.
Typically, resolutions of 4K and higher have been a smaller portion of the security market, given that they came at a premium price tag for the high-end optics, image sensor and SoC. Also, the cost and extra bandwidth of storing and streaming 4K video were not always worth it for the benefit of just viewing video at higher resolution.
4K AI processing on-camera
The advent of on-camera AI at 4K changes the paradigm. By enabling 4K AI processing on-camera, smaller objects at longer distances can now be detected and analysed without having to go to a server, and with much higher detail and accuracy compared to what can be done on a 2 MP or 5 MP cameras.
This means that fewer false alarms will be generated, and each camera will now be able to cover a longer distance and wider area, offering more meaningful insights without necessarily having to stream and store that 4K video to a back-end server. “This is valuable, for example, for traffic cameras mounted on top of high poles, which need to be able to see very far out and identify cars and licence plates that are hundreds of meters away,” said Jerome Gigot.
The advent of on-camera AI at 4K changes the paradigm
Enhanced video analytics and wider coverage
“Ambarella’s new CV5S and CV52S SoCs truly allow the industry to take advantage of higher resolution on-camera for better analytics and wider coverage, but without all the costs typically incurred by having to stream high-quality 4K video out 24/7 to a remote server for offline analytics,” said Jerome Gigot.
He adds, “So, next-generation cameras will now be able to identify more criminals, faces and licence plates, at longer distances, for an overall lower cost and with faster response times by doing it all locally on-camera.”
Deployment in retail applications
Retail environments can be some of the toughest, as the cameras may be looking at hundreds of people at once
Retail applications are another big selling point. Retail environments can be some of the toughest, as the cameras may be looking at hundreds of people at once (e.g., in a mall), to provide not only security features, but also other business analytics, such as foot traffic and occupancy maps that can be used later to improve product placement.
The higher resolution and higher AI performance, enabled by the new Ambarella SoCs, provide a leap forward in addressing those scenarios. In a store setup, a ceiling-mounted camera with four 4K imagers can simultaneously look at the cashier line on one side of the store, sending alerts when a line is getting too long and a new cashier needs to be deployed, while at the same time looking at the entrance on the other side of the store, to count the people coming in and out.
This leaves two additional 4K imagers for monitoring specific product aisles and generating real-time business analytics.
Use in cashier-less stores
Another retail application is a cashier-less store. Here, a CV5S or CV52S-based camera mounted on the ceiling will have enough resolution and AI performance to track goods, while the customer grabs them and puts them in their cart, as well as to automatically track which customer is purchasing which item.
In a warehouse scenario, items and boxes moving across the floor could also be followed locally, on a single ceiling-mounted camera that covers a wide area of the warehouse. Additionally, these items and boxes could be tracked across the different imagers in a multi-headed camera setup, without the video having to be sent to a server to perform the tracking.
Updating on-camera AI networks
Another feature of Ambarella’s SoCs is that their on-camera AI networks can be updated on-the-fly, without having to stop the video recording and without losing any video frames.
So, for example in the case of a search for a missing vehicle, the characteristics of that missing vehicle (make, model, colour, licence plate) can be sent to a cluster of cameras in the general area, where the vehicle is thought to be missing, and all those cameras can be automatically updated to run a live search on that specific vehicle.
If any of the cameras gets a match, a remote operator can be notified and receive a picture, or even a live video feed of the scene.
Efficient traffic management
With the CV52S edge AI vision SoC, those decisions can be made locally at each intersection by the camera itself
Relating to traffic congestion, most big cities have thousands of intersections that they need to monitor and manage. Trying to do this from one central location is costly and difficult, as there is so much video data to process and analyse, in order to make those traffic decisions (to control the traffic lights, reverse lanes, etc.).
With the CV52S edge AI vision SoC, those decisions can be made locally at each intersection by the camera itself. The camera would then take actions autonomously (for example, adjust traffic-light timing) and only report a status update to the main traffic control centre. So now, instead of having one central location trying to manage 1,000 intersections, a city can have 1,000 smart AI cameras, each managing its own location and providing updates and metadata to a central server.
Privacy is always a concern with video. In this case, doing AI on-camera is inherently more private than streaming the video to a server for analysis. Less data transmission means fewer points of entry for a hacker trying to access the video.
On Ambarella’s CV5S and CV52S SoCs, the video can be analysed locally and then discarded, with just a signature or metadata of the face being used to find a match. No actual video needs to be stored or transmitted, which ensures total privacy.
In addition, the chips contain a very secure hardware cyber security block, including OTP memory, Arm TrustZones, DRAM scrambling and I/O virtualisation. This makes it very difficult for a hacker to replace the firmware on the camera, providing another level of security and privacy at the system level.
Another privacy feature is the concept of privacy masking. This feature enables portions of the video (say a door or a window) to be blocked out, before being encoded in the video stream. The blocked portions of the scene are not present in the recorded video, thus providing a privacy option for cameras that are facing private areas.
“With on-camera AI, each device becomes its own smart endpoint, and can be reconfigured at will to serve the specific physical security needs of its installation,” said Jerome Gigot, adding “The possibilities are endless, and our mission as an SoC maker is really to provide a powerful and easy-to-use platform, complete with computer-vision tools, that enable our customers and their partners to easily deploy their own AI software on-camera.”
Physical security in parking lots
With a CV5S or CV52S AI-enabled camera, the camera will be able to cover a much wider portion of the parking lot
One example is physical security in a parking lot. A camera today might be used to just record part of the parking lot, so that an operator can go back and look at the video if a car were broken into or some other incident occurred.
With a CV5S or CV52S AI-enabled camera, first of all, the camera will be able to cover a much wider portion of the parking lot. Additionally, it will be able to detect the licence plates of all the cars going in and out, to automatically bill the owners.
If there is a special event, the camera can be reprogrammed to identify VIP vehicles and automatically redirect them to the VIP portion of the lot, while reporting to the entrance station or sign how many parking spots are available. It can even tell the cars approaching the lot where to go.
Advantages of using edge AI vision SoCs
Jerome Gigot said, “The possibilities are endless and they span across many verticals. The market is primed to embrace these new capabilities. Recent advances in edge AI vision SoCs have brought about a period of change in the physical security space. Companies that would have, historically, only provided security cameras, are now getting into adjacent verticals such as smart retail, smart cities and smart buildings.”
He adds, “These changes are providing a great opportunity for all the camera makers and software providers to really differentiate themselves by providing full systems that offer a new level of insights and efficiencies to, not only the physical security manager, but now also the store owner and the building manager.”
He adds, “All of these new applications are extremely healthy for the industry, as they are growing the available market for cameras, while also increasing their value and the economies of scale they can provide. Ambarella is looking forward to seeing all the innovative products that our customers will build with this new generation of SoCs.”
As the new Chief Executive Officer of Milestone Systems, Thomas Jensen pledges to continue the company’s focus on protecting people and assets and to help organisations gain insight and optimise their business processes.
Seeking to fulfil Milestone’s mission to ‘Make the World See,’ Jensen will maintain Milestone’s approach of being an open video management system (VMS) platform and having an open company culture.
“I will also be working to expand Milestone’s VMS into new areas and applications —for example, to monitor beach erosion as the climate continues to warm up around the world,” says Jensen. “I believe the future of VMS is about bridging the gap between security and applications that go beyond security.”
Jensen’s previous experience in the IT industry contributes to his understanding of the entire channel
Jensen’s previous experience in the IT industry contributes to his understanding of the entire channel. His experience as a generalist – extending beyond IT – enables understanding of the business side of things in addition to the skills, strengths and motivations of the people who work at Milestone, its channel, partner networks and the end-user communities.
“One crucial thing my career taught me is the importance of your team members,” he says. “A former manager once told me that success is the sum of the success of your team. And, luckily, Milestone already has a strong culture and people-first approach. This is one of the things that attracted me to this job.”
The new CEO plans to spend his first 90 days building relationships and getting to know the company and the team members. He will be present in conversations with all Milestone people as well as partners and system integrators. “I want to ensure there is continuity and resilience so that my joining Milestone is a seamless transition,” Jensen says. “Furthermore, my focus will be to further build on the strengths of Milestone to create long-term sustainable growth.”
Jensen sees security through two lenses: on one hand, protecting people and property, and on the other, providing video-enabled insights for public and private companies to be able to make better decisions. On the protection side, businesses have room to grow as technologies move to provide more affordable, more powerful, and more interoperable solutions.
A transformative element in the future evolution of video management is the cloud
Regarding video-enabled insights, there is great potential, and Milestone is forging deeper relationships with partners and system integrators of important verticals such as cities, education, transportation, and retail. A transformative element in the future evolution of video management is the cloud, which will advance the deployment of technologies across the board.
Best software integrations
“I will be spending time working with our organisation and partners to evolve Milestone’s cloud strategy and cloud partnerships to address the opportunities that lie ahead,” says Jensen.
“I also think that Milestone’s belief in being open and giving integrators and end-users the freedom to choose the best software integrations available in the market is a philosophy that we've held dear from the very beginning — and this will become critical in the future as VMS solutions continue to evolve.”
Safer business environment
As the COVID-19 pandemic has raged on, Milestone Systems has continued its operation as usual, deploying safety measurements as needed to protect both employees and the partners they work with. COVID-19 has impacted everyone, every business and every government and organisation around the world, says Jensen.
We’re working with our partners to design a safer business environment with VMS-enabled solutions"
“I think it taught us all a lesson in empathy and how we need to respect differences in behaviour, regulations and compliance, customs and even each other,” he says. “At Milestone, we’re working with our partners to design a safer business environment with VMS-enabled solutions for social distancing, queue management, and contact tracing.”
Creating security solutions
“The past 50 years of digital technology and the past 20 years of IP technology have taught us that technologies eventually converge, and in some cases merge,” says Jensen. “Sometimes functions merge and channels converge, other times it’s the networks that come closer together, but none of this is absolute and universal.”
“This is why we need to listen and learn from each other and be respectful of differences in the industry and the channel—particularly cultural and regional differences.” Jensen adds: “The technology company of the future — which I believe Milestone is becoming — will not dictate solutions but will instead partner with IT and security stakeholders to create security solutions that meet each customer’s unique challenge and environment.”
The general public doesn’t give much thought to the important role of security officers in creating and promoting safer environments.
The low-profile work of security officers is vital to protecting people, places and property. During the pandemic, newer aspects to that role have emerged. Security personnel have been called on to perform diverse tasks such as managing queues at the supermarket, safeguarding testing centres and hospitals, ensuring food deliveries, and supporting police patrols.
The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) and two other organisations in the United Kingdom are joining forces to raise awareness of the work of security officers and to recognise the vital importance of the duties they perform. BSIA, a trade association, includes members who are responsible for 70% of privately provided UK security products and services, including security guarding, consultancy services, and distribution and installation of electronic and physical security equipment.
BSIA, the Security Institute and the Security Commonwealth
Joining BSIA in the awareness campaign are the Security Institute, a professional security membership body; and the Security Commonwealth, which is comprised of 40 organisations from across the security landscape with common objectives to build professionalism, raise standards and share best practices.
“The recognition of security officers as key workers is the start of a re-appraisal of what service they provide to the community in keeping the public safe and secure,” says Mike Reddington, BSIA Chief Executive. “As we exit lockdown and have to navigate public spaces again, [security officers] will have a crucial role in supporting public confidence. We are working closely with the Police and all other public bodies to find the best way to achieve this.”
Security officers acknowledged as key workers
The campaign will showcase security professionals as a respected, valued, professional service provider and a key worker that is acknowledged and embedded in daily lives.
The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) and two other organisations in the United Kingdom are joining forces to raise awareness of the work of security officers
“Great effort has been invested in the professional standards and capabilities of frontline [security] officers, and they have proven their worth during the coronavirus crisis in the UK,” says Rick Mounfield, Chief Executive, the Security Institute. “They, along with the wider security sector, deserve to be recognized, respected and appreciated for the safety and security they provide across the United Kingdom.”
“[We are working to] build professionalism, raise standards and share best practices, and I hope this campaign can make more people recognise the changes we have all made and continue to make,” says Guy Matthias, Chairman of the Security Commonwealth (SyCom).
The industry will be reaching out to companies, professionals, and organisations in the sector to participate in the campaign. The hope is that, over the coming weeks as lockdown is eased, the industry can play its part to ensure that the country emerges with confidence to start to recover and build for the future.
Private security more important than ever
The campaign will showcase security professionals as a respected, valued, professional service provider
Across the pond in the United States, law enforcement professionals are facing a crisis of confidence during a time of civil unrest as protestors call to “defund the police” and to otherwise undermine and/or recast law enforcement’s role in preserving the peace and ensuring public safety. If an upshot is that public policing is starved of resources, the role of private security to supplement their mission is likely to increase.
In short, the role of private security is more important than ever on both sides of the Atlantic. Public recognition of that role is welcome, obviously. In any case, the importance of their role protecting people, places and property has never been greater.
The idea of touchless systems has gained new levels of prominence during the last year, driven by the global COVID-19 pandemic. Contactless systems have been part of the industry’s toolbox for decades, while technologies like facial and iris recognition are finding new uses every day.
We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Which security markets are embracing touchless, contactless systems and why?
In the past few weeks, the light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel has brightened, providing new levels of hope that the worst of the pandemic is behind us. Dare we now consider what life will be like after the pandemic is over? Considering the possible impact on our industry, we asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Which security technologies will be most useful in a post-pandemic world?
We are several weeks into 2021, and it is already shaping up to be an eventful year. The happenings and trends from 2020 will likely carry over into the new year, but in a fast-moving industry such as ours, there will also be additional trends to watch. Looking toward the year ahead, we asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What will be the biggest security trends in 2021?