In large-scene applications, it is difficult for a panoramic surveillance equipment to acquire real-time round-the-clock data due to a lot of factors such as blind spots, aperture limitation, fixed monitoring scene, etc. Aiming to solve these common problems that most general panoramic equipment are facing, Dahua Technology, a video-centric smart IoT solution and service provider, launches its new Hunter SDT5X Series Camera to bring more benefits to its users. Featuring smart tracking, perimete...
Security companies provide a type of service that tends to go unnoticed except when it’s missed. Businesses, banks, stores, event organisers and VIPs are their main clients. Their demand is increasing, mostly due to the expansion that Southern California has experienced in the latest years. Small cities and towns are increasingly growing every day, mostly due to internal migration and the high prices of rent in Los Angeles County. Veteran Los Angeles security company HillQuest Security kn...
Meesons, UK’s entry control innovator, will be unveiling its innovative EasyGate Superb at this year’s International Security Expo (ISE19), Olympia London, 3-4 December, stand K40. At 99mm the EasyGate Superb cabinets are the slimmest of any Speed Gate on the market, accentuating the sleek, minimalistic aesthetics created by the glass wings. EasyGate Superb is an ultra-slim, fully customised Speed Gate that is an ideal solution for controlling access to offices, schools, universities...
Cloud applications are an everyday facet of business these days, exemplified by systems such as Office 365, Salesforce.com and Dropbox. The physical security market is also embracing the cloud after overcoming some initial concerns and thanks to improvements in cloud offerings. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: which security markets are likely to embrace the cloud?
Protecting against fire and security risks is an essential aspect of life for people and across all sectors. However, there is an increasing expectation and demand on fire and security providers, in areas such as education. The securitisation of our world paired with the rapid speed of communication and news updates means that young people especially have the potential to be more aware of potential dangers and threats to their own safety and the safety of those around them. Education institutio...
As security embraces IT-centric solutions, it can provide business value over and above security. Now in charge of managing a variety of data – e.g., from video platforms – a company’s security function has access to a range of new metrics. While security may use video to analyse a security event, machine learning can analyse the same data for other business capabilities, such as quality control or when a policy has been breached. “It’s the same camera, but with d...
Now the customer can combine the advanced access control of a wireless electronic escutcheon with the intelligence and superior security of an electromechanical mortice lock. With a robust design, the new SMARTair Lock is built to secure doors where high daily traffic and a large number of access events are all in a day’s work. This new wireless device in the SMARTair product range is built around three main elements. The external reader with multi-colour LED is available in several different finishes to blend with the existing doors. The lock’s internal control and battery-powered RF module also houses a button for electronic privacy. Finally, a battery-powered electromechanical clutch unlocks the door when a valid credential is presented to the external electronic reader. The new SMARTair Lock works with any DIN-compliant door handle — the users can choose their own. Streamlined security management The new SMARTair Lock can be installed quickly and wirelessly without disrupting your working day Users can also choose to install an additional mechanical cylinder, enabling them to unlock the door quickly and manually in any emergency. The lock incorporates admin-friendly features for streamlined security management. Sensors monitor and report when a door is left open or closed incorrectly, or when an attempted intrusion is detected. A SMARTair Lock also registers any unlocking events made via mechanical key. The new wireless lock works with any SMARTair management option, including offline, update-on-card and real-time, online system management. Its RFID reader accepts all common RFID credentials, including MIFARE®, iCLASS® and DESFire. The lock also works with the future-proofed Openow mobile solution from SMARTair, and the SMARTair Remote app. Simple and efficient The new SMARTair Lock can be installed quickly and wirelessly without disrupting the user's working day and make access in schools, hospitals and any other high-traffic location safer, simpler and more efficient — reducing wasted time and expense while ensuring that the premises are more secure.
ASSA ABLOY Group brands Corbin Russwin and SARGENT released a new status indicator for, respectively, the ML2000 Series and 8200 Series mortice locks. Featuring the largest viewing window available on the market, a reflective coating for improved clarity in low light conditions and a patent-pending curved design, these mortice lock status indicators combine emergency preparedness and enhanced privacy to meet the needs of any type of facility. “Schools, offices and all types of commercial spaces need to prioritise safety and create inclusive environments,” says Bill Grambo, President, Access and Egress Hardware Group, ASSA ABLOY. “Our mortice lock status indicators make it easier to see if a door is locked from a distance and at almost any angle, thereby avoiding awkward disturbances or interruptions and enabling a more secure and private experience in a given space.” Improving security through efficient design With its viewing window 25% larger than other indicators on the market and a reflective coating, it’s easier to see the lock status on these indicators, even in low-light conditions. Because of the curved design, it’s also possible to view the lock status from any angle. Available in both sectional and escutcheon trim, these mortice lock status indicators help users secure an opening and determine more quickly when that opening is locked. Quickly seeing that a room is occupied can avoid awkward moments in restrooms in public facilities ASSA ABLOY’s mortice lock status indicator also offers the option to include engraving on the lock escutcheon or sectional plate to visually confirm the direction to turn the key or thumbturn to lock or unlock the door. By clearly displaying the status of an opening, ASSA ABLOY’s latest mortice lock status indicators prevent interruptions when a person attempts to open a locked door. Quickly seeing that a room is occupied can avoid awkward moments in restrooms in public facilities. Enhanced safety and privacy These indicators can also prevent classroom interruptions, maintain a secure and quiet environment in rooms for nursing mothers, and keep a space distraction-free for office meetings or employee meditation. The result is an inclusive environment where end users can focus and enjoy a more peaceful experience. Upgrading to the latest mortice lock status indicators is quick and easy. For facilities with existing ML2000 or 8200 series mortise locks, an upgrade kit is available with either escutcheon or sectional trim to secure to the lock body. The upgrade kit uses the existing door preparation and leaves no holes. Security and individual privacy are increasingly important in all manner of spaces, and ASSA ABLOY’s latest mortice lock status indicators provide both of these experiences. The ease of installation facilitates safety and comfort in facilities ranging from education to healthcare to commercial buildings, and the industry-leading features signal what’s next in the evolution of inclusive spaces.
Eagle Eye Networks has announced up to US$ 1,000,000 in available funding for the 2020 Drako School Grant, supporting the implementation and operation of security equipment, and cloud recording services at local school buildings and/or campuses. Eligible schools, or school districts, include accredited private and public schools; elementary schools, middle schools, high schools, and colleges. School security “By increasing access to high-quality cloud video surveillance we’re cultivating a safer environment for our students, parents, and staff. We believe that the future of video surveillance is in the cloud, and our schools deserve a flexible, secure, low-cost solution that only migrating to a Cloud VMS can guarantee,” said Dean Drako, CEO of Eagle Eye Networks. Eagle Eye Networks has extensive experience protecting schools across the nation Eagle Eye Networks has extensive experience protecting schools across the nation, collaborating with schools in over 15 states to provide modern, simple-to-use video surveillance solutions. Cloud video surveillance “We love Eagle Eye Networks. Compared to our slow, outdated surveillance system, we now have full confidence that the video is recording reliably in the cloud,” said former Drako School Grant winner, Timothy Lee, Principal at Oakwood High School in Oakwood, Illinois. More schools are moving their video surveillance to the Cloud because: Flexible permission-based accessibility: Administrators can see what is happening in any location from any device running the Cloud VMS mobile app or a modern browser. First Responders access: School VMS administrators have the option to designate first responders to receive real-time and historical video access during emergency situations. Access control: Integrations with global companies like Brivo, DMP and Salto provide customers with comprehensive solutions that combine cloud video surveillance with key access control functions. IT efficiencies: Reduce the amount of equipment and human resources needed onsite by eliminating the need for maintaining outdated on-site storage systems. Centralised management: The Eagle Eye Cloud VMS provides central management tools that enable administrators to track user activity and delegate or revoke user access, all from a mobile or web browser. Unlimited scalability: Eagle Eye Cloud VMS allows customers to expand storage capacity on demand, minimising capital expenditures and eliminating the need to decide how many servers will be needed in the future. Cyber security: All Eagle Eye Networks video is encrypted on site and remains encrypted at rest, in flight, and in our Cloud. This means your campus is not subject to unauthorised viewing or recording of school video. Cloud-based Eagle Eye Security Camera VMS The solution includes cameras, gateways, cloud services, and centralised management Grant recipients will receive one full year of funding for the cloud-based Eagle Eye Security Camera Video Management System (VMS) and associated components. The solution includes cameras, gateways, cloud recording services, and centralised management. Optionally, schools can use their existing security cameras, and integrate their on-site surveillance system to the Eagle Eye cloud-based VMS. School grant recipients are responsible for the cost of installation if necessary. Compatible IP, analog and HD over coax The Eagle Eye Security Camera VMS will work with a broad array of IP, analog, or HD over coax. Grant applications will be accepted through December 31, 2019. Grant winners will be notified of the next steps within 2 weeks of submission.
Building on the product campaign of ‘See More in Smarter Ways’, VIVOTEK, the IP surveillance solution provider, launches 3 new panoramic and multi-sensor cameras, the CC9381-HV, MS9321-EHV, and MA9322-EHTV. These three cameras feature H.265 plus VIVOTEK’s Smart Stream III video compression technology, WDR Pro, outdoor-certificated housing, and they are all safeguarded by Trend Micro IoT Security. Each is specially designed for versatile applications with different numbers of sensors, vertical fields of view (FOV), and IR distances, allowing users to increase their operational efficiency through a single camera. Panoramic network cameras We always think about how to make our products better with new feature upgrades or new designs" “To meet ever-changing user demands, we always think about how to make our products better with new feature upgrades or new designs.” said Shengfu Cheng, Director of Product Development Division, VIVOTEK Inc. “Our new panoramic cameras fit into any type of scenario and they are also unique with a different size and shape. In addition, they provide benefits beyond the basics, including the reduction of network cables, camera licenses, and maintenance costs.” Of the 180-degree panoramic network cameras, VIVOTEK’s CC9381-HV features a compact design that nonetheless provides 5-megapixel resolution and offers a 120-degree vertical field of view. 15-meter IR illuminators further enhance the camera and make it suitable for a wide array of both indoor and outdoor environments, such as boutiques, convenience stores, banks, schools and homes. Multi-adjustable sensor dome camera The MS9321-EHV applies the brand-new Robocop design with a built-in sunshield that sleekly covers four 5-megapixel sensors in 65-degree vertical field of view. It also supports IR illuminators effective up to 30 meters. Moreover, it is equipped with the video alignment feature, enabling users to experience a seamlessly stitched 180-degree horizontal view with superior details. Last but not the least, VIVOTEK launches its new generation multi-adjustable sensor dome camera, the MA9322-EHTV. Featuring four independent 5-megapixel CMOS sensors with 3.7 to 7.7 mm motorised-focus lenses and 30-meter IR illuminators, the MA9322-EHTV allows users to simultaneously view four different areas while occupying only a single IP address. Taken in total, the above features advance these new cameras beyond the current field of surveillance cameras to continue VIVOTEK’s campaign of ‘See More in Smarter Ways.’
Armor At Hand™, manufacturer of the lightweight ballistic Smart Shield™, will be showcasing its IoT connected shields at the 2019 Global Security Exchange (GSX) beginning on Sept. 8 in Chicago at McCormick Place Convention Center, Booth 181. In addition to demonstrating the shield’s ability to withstand the impact of multiple 7.62mm high-powered rifle bullets, Armor At Hand will also be announcing its partnerships with ESRI and The School Superintendents Association (AASA) along with presenting at the New Innovative Product Competition Wed 11th at 1 p.m. Stage X. Provides physical barrier For Schools (Kindergarten – College): Offering instant protection in emergency situations, Armor At Hand Smart Shield provides a physical barrier and are designed to be discreet and easy to manage. Designed for schools, workplaces and other facilities, the Smart Shield is independently tested to the equivalent National Institute of Justice (NIJ) Level III of protection. The shields allow protection from common pistols and high-powered rifles while also blending into the surrounding area. Critical Technology: Using IoT technology, the shield comes with internet-connected electronics attached to the shield and its own mobile app. When the shield’s IoT technology detects movement of the shield, it will immediately alert other nearby shields, administrators, or authorities while also calculating a danger area and directing the user to safe zones through a guided path to safety. Adding further value, the shields are made with advanced materials all having a 20-plus year lifespan and the IoT is easily upgradeable. Allows immediate connection to authorities Smart Shield provides a significant physical barrier and layer of protection, besides being packed with modern technologies" GSX is the largest security show in the world, bringing together security professionals from all vertical markets to network, learn and re-invest in the industry. Attendees can learn more about the Armor At Hand Smart Shield and witness a demonstration of its capabilities from Chad Ahrens, Founder and CEO at Armor At Hand. “We are honoured to be a part of GSX and to bring our revolutionary new product to market. We want to showcase to the world that our product provides a significant physical barrier and layer of protection, as well as being packed with modern technologies that allow an immediate connection to authorities and guides those affected to safety,” said Ahrens. “Every second is so important - we hope that by showing our new product to the world at GSX, exchange attendees and security professionals will also see how this product can help save lives.” In addition to highlighting the IoT connected, lightweight shields, Armor At Hand is announcing its partnership with ESRI and The School Superintendents Association (AASA). Coupled with Esri ArcGIS, the Armor At Hand Smart Shield provides autonomous safety features such as: Alerts other shields on campus if one of them is moved Mapped real-time danger area and safe zones Guidance for those in harm’s way to safety with one BIG arrow Resources to assist school Delivered is assured protection, the peace of mind that help is coming, along with shortened police response times. ESRI is an international pioneer and supplier of geographic information system (GIS) software. ESRI utilises its ArcGIS mapping and spatial analytics software to meet digital transformation needs for organisations of all sizes. AASA is the premier membership organisation representing public school district superintendents across the country and the world. The primary goal of AASA is to advocate for highest quality public education for all students, as well as to develop and support the school system. Armor At Hand’s partnership with AASA speaks to both organisations’ commitment to providing resources to assist school districts before, during and after a crisis. With access to more than 12,000 school districts, AASA will enable Armor At Hand to reach the audience that the Smart Shields are designed to protect.
On September 8–12 in Chicago, ASSA ABLOY will show GSX 2019 attendees the latest innovations in their security and life safety offerings. They’ll also hold special events and educational opportunities for conference attendees at their booth, #1303. “New challenges are always on the horizon, so security professionals need to stay ahead of changing conditions and have access to cutting-edge solutions,” said Mark Duato, Executive Vice President of Aftermarket Solutions at ASSA ABLOY Door Security Solutions. “We’re proud to be at GSX again this year and support professionals across education, government, healthcare, commercial and multi-family security in staying ahead of what’s next for the industry.” Proactive solutions for security ASSA ABLOY is making access more convenient by extending electronic solutions to openings in commercial facilities At GSX 2019, visitors to the ASSA ABLOY booth will experience the latest products to help them better secure, manage and control their spaces. ASSA ABLOY is making access more convenient by extending electronic solutions to openings in commercial facilities and multi-family residences. For example, the award-winning Adams Rite G100 digital glass door lock with Aperio wireless technology offers a surface-mount solution for interior all-glass doors that integrates with existing software. Now glass openings can utilise single-card or dual-factor authentication without the need for cutting and drilling to install the lock. The latest keypad access product by Yale, the nexTouch Keypad Exit Trim, easily upgrades exit devices with keyless technology in commercial, multi-use and multi-family spaces. This scalable solution functions as a stand-alone keypad lock, or it can be integrated with a data-on-card or wireless access system. Enhancing security in educational facilities ASSA ABLOY combines security with cost effectiveness so that safety solutions can be implemented at scaleASSA ABLOY also remains committed to enhancing security in educational facilities. Their award-winning attack-resistant doors are tested according to the FBI’s active shooter report and can withstand a four-minute attack by an assailant using a variety of tools and weapons. ASSA ABLOY combines security with cost effectiveness so that safety solutions can be implemented at scale. “GSX 2019 is a great opportunity to show a range of stakeholders in various industries how ASSA ABLOY can help them strengthen life safety and security at their facilities,” explained Jeff Huggins, VP Government Programs & National Accounts, ASSA ABLOY, Door Security Services. “Our activities and interactive displays onsite will also allow visitors to deepen their knowledge and discover new ways to better secure their spaces, and they’ll even have the opportunity to give back to our brave military members.” Contributing for military ASSA ABLOY will feature hands-on activities and informational opportunities at their booth. On September 11, they will offer an opportunity for GSX attendees to give back to those who sacrifice for our freedoms by hosting a USO Bag Build in their booth. Attendees can pack supplies for military, who transit through the Chicago USO centresFrom 12 – 4 p.m. CT, attendees can pack supplies for military, who transit through the Chicago USO centres, including weekly graduates from the US Navy’s boot camp at Great Lakes and transiting troops who may be en route to or returning from deployments at locations across the globe. Training and education resources At the in-booth Technology Center, visitors can explore the: Customer Support App center, where attendees can view interactive videos, chat with technicians and review troubleshooting resources. BILT app kiosk, which showcases easy-to-use 3D installation instructions for ASSA ABLOY products. ASSA ABLOY Academy for training and education resources. Openings StudioTM kiosk, where attendees can preview integrative BIM software tools for designing, building and managing openings that can be used throughout the lifecycle of a building. ASSA ABLOY Group companies will also be onsite, including ABLOY (booth#2523), Ameristar Perimeter Security (booth#1413), HID Global (booth#1503) and Traka (booth#1213).
The statistics are staggering. The death tolls are rising. And those who now fear environments that were once thought to be safe zones like school campuses, factories, commercial businesses and government facilities, find themselves having to add the routine of active-shooter drills into their traditional fire drill protocols. The latest active shooter statistics released by the FBI earlier this year in their annual active-shooter report designated 27 events as active shooter incidents in 2018. The report reveals that 16 of the 27 incidents occurred in areas of commerce, seven incidents occurred in business environments, and five incidents occurred in education environments. Deadly active-shooter events Six of the 12 deadliest shootings in the country have taken place in the past five years Six of the 12 deadliest shootings in the country have taken place in the past five years, including Sutherland Springs church, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the San Bernardino regional center, the Walmart in El Paso and the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, which have all occurred since 2015. Although these incidents occurred in facilities with designated entry points common to churches, schools and businesses, the two most deadly active-shooter events since 2015 were the Route 91 Harvest music festival shooting in Las Vegas that left 58 dead and the Pulse nightclub killings in Orlando where 49 perished. As Christopher Combs, special agent in charge of the FBI field office in San Antonio, Texas, said during a news conference following the August 31 mass shooting in Odessa, Texas that claimed seven lives: “We are now at almost every two weeks seeing an active shooter in this country." Active shooter incidents Between December 2000 and December 2018, the FBI’s distribution of active shooter incidents by location looks like this: Businesses Open to Pedestrian Traffic (74) Businesses Closed to Pedestrian Traffic (43) K-12 Schools (39) Institutions of Higher Learning (16) Non-Military Government Properties (28) Military Properties—Restricted (5) Healthcare Facilities (11) Houses of Worship (10) Private Properties (12) Malls (6) What the majority of these venues have in common is they all have a front entrance or chokepoint for anyone entering the facilities, which is why any active-shooter plan must include a strategy to secure that entry point. Situational awareness in perimeter and door security Preventing people with the wrong intentions from entering the space is the goal" According to Paul Franco, an A&E with more than 28 years of experience as a consultant and systems integrator focusing on schools, healthcare and large public and private facilities, that while active shooter incidents continue to rise, the residual effect has been an increase in situational awareness in perimeter and door security. “Certainly, protecting people and assets is the number one goal of all our clients. There are multiple considerations in facilities like K-12 and Healthcare. Preventing people with the wrong intentions from entering the space is the goal. But a critical consideration to emphasise to your client is getting that person out of your facility and not creating a more dangerous situation by locking the person in your facility,” says Franco. High-security turnstiles “Schools today are creating a space for vetting visitors prior to allowing access into the main facility. Using technology properly like high-security turnstiles offer great benefits in existing schools where space constraints and renovation costs can be impractical.” What steps should they be taken when recommending the proper door security to ensure the building is safe As a consultant/integrator, when discussions are had with a client that has a facility in a public space like a corporate building, government centre or industrial facility, what steps should they be taken when recommending the proper door security to ensure the building is safe and can protect its people and assets? For Frank Pisciotta, President and CEO of Business Protection Specialists, Inc. in Raleigh, North Carolina, a fundamental element of his security strategy is making appropriate recommendations that are broad-based and proactive. Properly identifying the adversaries “As a consultant, my recommendations must include properly identifying the adversaries who may show up at a client’s door, the likelihood of that event occurring, the consequences of that event occurring, determining if there are tripwires that can be set so an organisation can move their line of defence away from the door, educating employees to report potential threats and creating real-time actionable plans to respond to threats. A more reactionary posture might include such thing as target hardening such as ballistic resistant materials at entry access points to a facility,” Pisciotta says. Veteran consultant David Aggleton of Aggleton & Associates of Mission Viejo, California recommends that clients compartmentalise their higher security areas for limited access by adding multiple credential controls (card + keypad + biometric), along with ‘positive’ access systems that inhibit tailgating/piggybacking such as secure turnstiles, revolving door and mantrap if your entrances and security needs meet the required space and access throughput rates. Integrated solution of electronic access control Defining a single point of entry in some public facilities is becoming the new standard of care according to many A&Es and security consultants, especially in a school environment. This approach allows a concerted effort when it comes to staffing, visitor monitoring and an integrated technology solution. The bottom line remains: most buildings are vulnerable to a security breach A proactive stance to securing a door entryway will use an integrated solution of electronic access control, turnstiles, revolving doors and mantraps that can substantially improve a facility’s security profile. The bottom line remains: most buildings are vulnerable to a security breach, so it’s not a matter of if there will be a next active shooter tragedy, it’s only a matter of where. Enhancing access control assurance “There is no easy answer to this question,” says Pisciotta referring to how a secured entrance can deter an active shooter. “There have been at least two high-profile incidents of adversaries shooting their way into a facility through access control barriers. So, if the threat so dictates, a ballistic resistant might be required.” He concludes: “There is obviously no question that turnstiles, revolving doors and man traps enhance access control assurance. Electronic access control is easy to integrate with these devices and providing that credentials are secure, approval processes are in place, change management is properly managed and the appropriate auditing measures in place, access control objectives can be met.”
When a child goes missing in a large, crowded mall, we have a panicking mom asking for help from the staff, at least a dozen cameras in the area, and assuming the child has gone missing for only 15 minutes, about 3 hours’ worth of video to look through to find the child. Typical security staff response would be to monitor the video wall while reviewing the footage and making a verbal announcement throughout the mall so the staff can keep an eye out for her. There is no telling how long it will take, while every second feels like hours under pressure. As more time passes, the possible areas where the child can be will widen, it becomes more time-consuming to search manually, and the likelihood of finding the child decreases. What if we can avoid all of that and directly search for that particular girl in less than 1 second? Artificial neural networks are improving every day and now enable us to search for a person across all selected camera streamsWith Artificial Intelligence, we can. Artificial neural networks are improving every day and now enable us to search for a person across all selected camera streams in a fraction of a second, using only one photo of that person. The photo does not even have to be a full frontal, passport-type mugshot; it can be a selfie image of the person at a party, as long as the face is there, the AI can find her and match her face with the hundreds or thousands of faces in the locations of interest. The search result is obtained in nearly real time as she passes by a certain camera. Distinguishing humans from animals and statues The AI system continuously analyses video streams from the surveillance cameras in its network, distinguishes human faces from non-human objects such as statues and animals, and much like a human brain, stores information about those faces in its memory, a mental image of the facial features so to speak. When we, the system user, upload an image of the person of interest to the AI system, the AI detects the face(s) in that image along with their particular features, search its memory for similar faces, and shows us where and when the person has appeared. We are in control of selecting the time period (up to days) and place (cameras) to search, and we can adjust the similarity level, i.e., how much a face matches the uploaded photo, to expand or fine-tune the search result according to our need. Furthermore, because the camera names and time stamps are available, the system can be linked with maps to track and predict the path of the person of interest. AI Face Search is not Face Recognition for two reasons: it protects people’s privacy, and it is lightweight Protecting people’s privacy with AI Face Search All features of face recognition can be enabled by the system user, such as to notify staff members when a person of interest is approaching the store AI Face Search is not Face Recognition for two reasons: it protects people’s privacy, and it is lightweight. First, with AI Face Search, no names, ID, personal information, or lists of any type are required to be saved in the system. The uploaded image can be erased from the system after use, there is no face database, and all faces in the camera live view can be blurred out post-processing to guarantee GDPR compliance. Second, the lack of a required face database, a live view with frames drawn around the detected faces and constant face matching in the background also significantly reduces the amount of computing resource to process the video stream, hence the lightweight. Face Search versus Face Recognition AI Face Search Face Recognition Quick search for a particular person in video footage Identify everyone in video footage Match detected face(s) in video stream to target face(s) in an uploaded image Match detected face(s) in video stream to a database Do not store faces and names in a database Must have a database with ID info Automatically protect privacy for GDPR compliance in public places May require additional paperwork to comply with privacy regulations Lightweight solution Complex solution for large-scale deployment Main use: locate persons of interest in a large area Main use: identify a person who passes through a checkpoint Of course, all features of face recognition can be enabled by the system user if necessary, such as to notify staff members when a person of interest is approaching the store, but the flexibility to not have such features and to use the search tool as a simple Google-like device particularly for people and images is the advantage of AI Face Search.Because Face Search is not based on face recognition, no faces and name identifications are stored Advantages of AI Face Search Artificial Intelligence has advanced so far in the past few years that its facial understanding capability is equivalent to that of a human. The AI will recognise the person of interest whether he has glasses, wears a hat, is drinking water, or is at an angle away from the camera. In summary, the advantages of Face Search: High efficiency: a target person can be located within a few seconds, which enables fast response time. High performance: high accuracy in a large database and stable performance, much like Google search for text-based queries. Easy setup and usage: AI appliance with the built-in face search engine can be customised to integrate to any existing NVR/VMS/camera system or as a standalone unit depending on the customer’s needs. The simple-to-use interface requires minimal training and no special programming skills. High-cost saving: the time saving and ease of use translate to orders of magnitude less manual effort than traditionally required, which means money saving. Scalability: AI can scale much faster and at a wider scope than human effort. AI performance simply relies on computing resource, and each Face Search appliance typically comes with the optimal hardware for any system size depending on the customer need, which can go up to thousands of cameras. Privacy: AI Face Search is not face recognition. For face recognition, there are privacy laws that limits the usage. Because Face Search is not based on face recognition, no faces and name identifications are stored, so Face Search can be used in many public environments to identify faces against past and real-time video recordings. AI Face Search match detected face(s) in video stream to target face(s) in an uploaded image Common use cases of AI Face Search In addition to the scenario of missing child in a shopping mall, other common use cases for the AI Face Search technology include: Retail management: Search, detect and locate VIP guests in hotels, shopping centres, resorts, etc. to promptly attend to their needs, track their behaviour pattern, and predict locations that they tend to visit. Crime suspect: Quickly search for and prove/disprove the presence of suspects (thief, robber, terrorist, etc.) in an incident at certain locations and time. School campus protection: With the recent increase in number of mass shootings in school campuses, there is a need to identify, locate and stop a weapon carrier on campus as soon as possible before he can start shooting. Face Search will enable the authorities to locate the suspect and trace his movements within seconds using multiple camera feeds from different areas on campus. Only one clear image of the suspect’s face is sufficient. In the race of technology development in response to business needs and security concerns, AI Face Search is a simple, lightweight solution for airports, shopping centres, schools, resorts, etc. to increase our efficiency, minimise manual effort in searching for people when incidents occur on site, and actively prevent potential incidents from occurring. By Paul Sun, CEO of IronYun, and Mai Truong, Marketing Manager of IronYun
Schools today are charged to provide an environment that is both safe and conducive to learning, which can be difficult considering the range of security incidents and challenges they face, including bullying, fights, graffiti, theft and more. In addition to working within often tight budgetary constraints, a main challenge is to provide the highest level of security in an aesthetically pleasing way that doesn’t make students feel as if they are in prison. While these two needs may seem mutually exclusive to some degree, that doesn’t have to be the case. School security can be achieved without building 20-foot walls or putting barbed wire around the perimeter. The key to balancing the security and learning environment can be found in the four pillars of a good school security strategy, namely people, practices, technology and physical environment. A mobile app or text notification system could be used to alert students and staff of potential problems Situational awareness One of the most effective measures to take is to educate staff and even students to learn to be aware about their surroundings and adopt the 'If you see something, say something' mentality. In an emergency, time is of the essence, so the speed of response becomes critical. Educating staff and students to recognise potential problems and report them is a good first step. Augmenting this with mobile apps and/or texting capabilities, for example, that allow someone to send a photo to school security or law enforcement for quick assessment and evaluation, can speed response even more. A mobile app or text notification system could also be used to alert students and staff of potential problems and provide instructions on what steps to take in order to remain safe. By providing real-time situational awareness about potential responses, these types of technologies can reduce the number of armed guards or resource officers needed to patrol a school or campus, which also makes students more comfortable and able to learn in a non-prison-like environment. Security best practices Every school should establish a set of security policies and procedures and ensure that staff and students understand what to do if they suspect a problem or if an incident should unfold at the school. However, too often, schools may not know where to start when seeking out best practices. And once these policies are in place, there may be confusion about how to audit them to ensure people are properly educated. The NFPA has begun work on a school security standard that would address a range of issues schools face on a daily basis A number of organisations are available to aid with this process, such as the Partner Alliance for School Safety a group founded in cooperation with SIA (Security Industry Association), which provides resources and tools to help schools and security professionals evaluate and establish the best security protection for their buildings. These guidelines and best practices are designed to help schools spend their often limited funds on the right security solutions. Safe and Sound Schools provides downloadable school security toolkits, and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has recently released the NFPA 3000 Active shooter response guidelines and has begun work on a school security standard that would address a range of issues schools face on a daily basis. The key takeaway is that the information is out there, and the organisations mentioned above are excellent resources for helping schools create safe, secure and learning-conducive environments. Technology in school security The second thing that needs to be considered is how technology can be brought to bear to contribute to school security. Video surveillance with video analytics can be deployed to monitor areas at certain times of day. For example, once school starts, there shouldn’t be a lot of activity in the parking lot or in particular areas around the school. For these situations, intelligent cameras with video analytics can be used to detect activity in those areas of interest to alert school security that something may need their attention. This might be a vehicle entering a lot or driving against the normal traffic flow, which may simply be a parent arriving to pick their child up early, or it could be something worth following up on. Radar detection is ideal for perimeters, where a device can be set up unobtrusively to alert when someone enters a particular area In any case, this is something that should be brought to the attention of someone who can quickly assess the situation and determine what, if any, response is needed. Because the goal in a potentially dangerous situation is speed response times. The faster you’re able to detect something using technology, the faster you’re able to respond. Therefore, being able to identify something happening in a parking lot and alert school resource officers could provide 30 seconds or a minute head start for response, which can get the school into a lockdown situation and get first responders on site more quickly.Facial recognition systems and providing access through smartphones could help create a more welcoming and secure environment for students, staff and parents After-hour monitoring solutions Monitoring buildings and facilities after hours presents a different set of challenges. For sporting events, the National Center for Spectator Sports and Security (NCS4) at the University of Southern Mississippi provides best practice guidance for sporting facilities and events not only just for universities but even including those at high schools. It’s been shown that using lighting at night can deter crime. However, it can be expensive to keep a building and grounds illuminated all night, every night. To mitigate these concerns and potential costs, there are video cameras available with extreme low-light capability that allows them to see in near-dark or in some cases complete darkness. This allows a school to save money by turning lights off while achieving a level of surveillance performance similar to daytime deployments. Radar detection Another technology for effective school security, both during and after school hours, is radar detection. This is ideal for perimeters, where a device can be set up unobtrusively to alert when someone enters a particular area. Radar can be deployed with a single PTZ camera, which can track whatever has been detected to provide real-time situational awareness for a school resource officer or law enforcement to investigate to determine the potential threat, if any, related to the perimeter breach.Following the four pillars of school security can ease the process while improving the effectiveness and efficiency of securing educational facilities More often than not, schools are faced with issues that are not necessarily the worst-case scenario everyone fears, such as how to identify parents and others who are authorised to pick a child up from school early. In this instance, facial recognition systems and providing access through smartphones could help create a more welcoming and secure environment for students, staff and parents. Lighting and landscaping In addition to technology, one of the things that can contribute to a safer school environment is environmental design. CPTED provides four basic principles, one of which is natural surveillance, which follows a 'see and be seen' philosophy. In other words, when people know they can be seen, they are less likely to commit a crime. The main points in this general principle are lighting and landscaping. For example, a school doesn’t want to block potentially vulnerable areas with landscaping, so the height and thickness of any potential landscaping elements should be carefully considered. In general, openness and visibility should be the guiding factors. Securing physical environment Another aspect of the physical environment is maintenance. If a window gets broken but isn’t fixed right away, that tends to invite vandalism. These are just two of the guidelines CPTED offers for creating a more secure environment that doesn’t feel like a prison. In general, finding the right mix between maintaining security and providing a welcoming, aesthetically pleasing and learning-conducive environment can seem like a difficult – if not impossible – task. Following the four pillars of school security can ease the process while improving the effectiveness and efficiency of securing educational facilities.
The task of protecting shared spaces, such as offices and schools, has become increasingly complex, particularly with ever-rising political tensions and the difficulties of assessing threats for schools, workplaces and law enforcement. Given the randomness of when and where a violent person may strike, those who manage facilities need an emergency plan, as well as robust training, detection and awareness. To gain more insights into dealing with such threats, we interviewed John Torres, President of Security and Technology Consulting, Guidepost Solutions. Guidepost Solutions is a global team of investigators, security and technology consultants, and compliance and monitoring experts. They provide security design and consulting, investigations, and compliance and monitoring leadership for critical client needs. Torres has extensive investigative and security experience. Previously, he served as the Special Agent in Charge for Homeland Security Investigations in Washington, D.C. and Virginia. His background includes more than 27 years of experience providing investigative and security management for the U.S. Departments of Homeland Security and Justice, including serving as the Acting Director and the Deputy Director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Q: Why is it difficult for schools, workplaces and law enforcement to assess threats of violence? How can they differentiate between a threat and a non-threat? Torres: With mobile technology and social media, threats are more than just physical. Schools are often not screening student social media accounts and are restricted in what they can and cannot monitor due to privacy laws. Proactive business and educational institutions are working closely with law enforcement, providing training and increasing awareness of potential threats or abnormal behaviour. Proactive business and educational institutions are working closely with law enforcementEmerging tools include software that allows monitoring of students’ school-issued email and file storage accounts. Communications software and apps provide real-time notification of emergency messages to students, parents, employees and the community to provide critical instructions during an emergency. The combination of training and new tools has enabled trends and threatening language to be identified and appropriate authorities notified. Q: What tools and/or insights can Guidepost Solutions add to the mix? What are the elements of a “comprehensive risk assessment?” Torres: Comprehensive risk assessments include adopting a tiered approach to assessing the school or office and the surrounding environment. A typical approach includes site perimeter review, identifying gates, fencing, vehicle barriers etc., the parking lot, building exterior, interior paths of travel and individual classroom measures. Review and observation of systems including mass notification, video surveillance, access control, intrusion and visitor management, etc. are critical to ensure that they are equipped to maintain functionality in the event of power loss etc. As an insight, always engage with people, they have the knowledge of each unique facility. Elements we can add to the mix include assessments, physical security improvements and mass notification systems, as well as emergency response training, operational policies and procedures, and behaviour analysis. Q: How can the elements of a risk assessment be translated into recommendations of specific technologies or processes (such as video surveillance and/or access control)? Torres: Risk assessments often drive and identify the need for technologies to be implemented into the security programs of schools, business or places of mass gathering, such as stadiums, convention centers and houses of worship. Risk assessments often drive the need for technologies to be implemented into places of mass gatheringRisk assessments help identify weaknesses in security procedure and then often support phased security enhancement programs as funds become available for investment. Each entity is different, and stakeholders should be included. For example, video surveillance may be a priority at one location but controlling the main point of entry may be more important at another. Technology and process recommendations must meet the operational needs and support the goals of the security team and operational managers. Q: How can the risk of an incident be mitigated and lives protected? Torres: While multiple steps are helpful, all of them in combination are key to implementing a comprehensive security plan. They include: Assessments – physical, cyber and procedural Physical Security Improvements – visitor management, fencing and barriers, locks and cameras Emergency Response Training – law enforcement coordination; muscle memory response Mass Notification Systems – current software, clear concise directives, testing Operational Policies and Procedures – termination, evacuation, communication, intervention Behavioural Analysis. Q: What are the elements of behaviour analysis? Torres: They include things like changes in appearance and behaviour, including social media behaviour, and isolation from family or friends. They also include studying or taking pictures of potential targets, and real or perceived bullying. An individual may advocate violence or hate, and/or consume violent extremist information/propaganda. He or she may talk about traveling to places that sound suspicious, and/or have an obsession with weapons. Q: What is the role of training? Torres: Training is critical regarding emergency situations in schools, be it a fire drill, earthquake, lockdown, active shooter situation, etc. Training and drills educate those present, including employees and staff, with information about actions that may save lives and reduce casualties in a real emergency. Training is critical regarding emergency situations in schoolsTraining should hold people responsible and set standards for acceptable behaviour. There should be a plan that is implemented, including practice and drills. You should also provide training and communication skill building classes. Develop intervention strategies. Work with HR and legal (and others as appropriate). Finally, document everything. Q: What challenges still remain? Torres: Cultural and behavioural change remains at the forefront of schools and businesses when addressing safety and security measures. A large percentage of violent acts may be preventable if a bystander shares his/her concerns with the proper authorities. According to the FBI, perpetrators exhibited behavioural indicators in 93% of incidents. And bystanders had prior knowledge in 81% of school attack incidents and 80% of terrorist-inspired behaviours or activities before an attack. Q: What progress are you seeing? Torres: With each tragedy that occurs, leaders are engaging with safety and security head on. There is a shift in schools and businesses to engage with professionals that can help them understand what they do not know. Simple things such as improved communication and enforcement of policies and procedures can have a tremendous positive impact on an organisation’s security posture. Assessments and technology upgrades are important and effective, but it all starts with acknowledging the need to provide and maintain safe and secure environments for students, employees and the community.
Many venues are using access control, video surveillance systems, sensors, and additional hardware solutions as part of a broader security strategy. By utilising so many disparate systems, corporate security teams are left with information “silos” that create inefficiencies and hamper communication. This abundance of hardware has left teams with too much data or too many tools, to manage effectively. Armored Things offers a software solution. The company’s “spatial intelligence platform” currently collects more data than other security intelligence solutions, utilising a broader range of sources and fusing data together rather than integrating it. The platform currently focuses on taking in data from WiFi, access control, and video surveillance systems and applying machine learning to deliver customers features such as real-time predictive analytics to prevent incidents like bottlenecks or overcrowding. Spatial Intelligence is an approach to physical security that enables users to collect, manage, and interpret data in a single platform. Combine machine learning with data The term can best be used to describe how digital transformation has affected physical security. Spatial Intelligence in its infancy looked like video surveillance data combined with machine learning to produce video analytics. The spatial intelligence solutions of today can combine machine learning with data of any source, type, and size to deliver value across a large organisation, not just the security team, says the company. Armored Things’ Spatial Intelligence platform unifies data from information silos to support data-driven decisions around operations and security. By fusing data from multiple sources, we can produce more consistent and useful insights for our customers” A suite of analytics, reporting and visualisation tools helps customers gain a real-time understanding of people and flow in their space. By removing the guesswork of everyday decisions, the product enables customers to make data-driven decisions at a moment’s notice, according to the company. Armored Things is more than a data management tool. “By fusing data from multiple sources (rather than only cameras or only WiFi), we can produce more consistent, accurate, and useful insights for our customers,” says Kevin Davis, Chief Security Officer at Armored Things. "Being able to collect the data is the first step, but turning it into actionable intelligence is where Armored Things excels.” IP cameras and other IoT-enabled devices The range of data sources includes IP cameras and other IoT-enabled devices and even outside data sources like bus schedules and weather reports. Armored Things has built a team of public safety and technical experts with the mission to keep people safe where they live, work, and play. By leveraging emerging technology to enhance physical security, the company built the software-centric Spatial Intelligence Platform for large organisations to enhance the safety and operations of their space. Schools and education facilities are among the customers that can benefit. The leadership at Armored Things cares deeply about school safety, so the recent epidemic of campus violence has definitely been a large topic of conversation, according to the company. “By delivering our products to a greater number of customers, Armored Things hopes to continue making schools a safe place to learn and gather,” says Davis. Recently, there was a significant bottleneck lasting nearly 30 minutes at the Syracuse-Clemson football game. Unifying data into one platform Digital transformation is disrupting the way our customers think about physical security,” Using Armored Things technology and providing real-time data to security and operations personnel could have identified the bottleneck as it began to form. This would have notified relevant personnel, who could have taken steps to mitigate the problem before it turned into a security risk. Keeping the security infrastructure simple is imperative to success. Integrating a software solution into the security strategy shouldn’t complicate existing operations, says the company. “Armored Things Spatial Intelligence Platform can bring your security and operations into focus by unifying all of your data into one platform for ease of use,” says Davis. For this reason, the team chose to integrate not only with customers’ existing security infrastructure but with non-traditional data sources (e.g. WiFi, event schedules, ticketing) as well. “By combining and analysing a more diverse dataset, Armored Things can help our customers make better decisions with deeper data-driven insights,” says Davis. "Digital transformation is disrupting the way our customers think about physical security,” says Davis. “As a team, our aim is to help our customers adapt to the digital age, as they transition from hardware to software-centric security solutions. Fostering organisational change is difficult, and our team hopes to make the transition process easier for our customers.”
During the Parkland, Florida, school shooting in 2018, the shooter was caught on a security camera pulling his rifle out of a duffle bag in the staircase 15 seconds before discharging the first round. However, the School Resource Officer didn’t enter the building because he wasn’t confident about the situation, and the Coral Springs Police Department had no idea what the shooter even looked like until 7 minutes and 30 seconds after the first round was fired. If the video system had included technology to recognise the gun threat in real time, alerts could have been sent to the security team. An announcement could have been made right away for all students and faculty in Building 12 to barricade their doors, and law enforcement could have responded a lot faster to a real-time feed of timely and accurate information. Automatically recognising gun threats The technology is centred around a CNN that aims to replicate how a human brain would process informationActuate offers such a technology, which the company says enables existing security cameras to automatically recognise gun threats and notify security in real-time. The technology is centred around a convolutional neural network (CNN) that aims to replicate how a human brain would process information. This neural network is trained to recognise what hands holding a firearm look like from hundreds of thousands of images in a proprietary data set. Over time, the system is able to mathematically calculate what a gun threat in a security camera feed looks like with a high degree of accuracy (well over 99% detection accuracy within the first 5 seconds), according to Actuate. “Active shooter situations are often marred by chaos and confusion,” says Sonny Tai, Chief Executive Officer of Actuate. “People are in fight-or-flight response and prioritise immediate survival instead of reaching for their phones and calling 911. When the 911 calls are made, callers often provide delayed, conflicting, and inaccurate information, inhibiting law enforcement’s ability to respond.” Enhances law enforcement response Tai says Actuate helps to clear up that chaos and confusion. “It provides visual intelligence of the location of the shooter, what they look like, what direction they’re heading, and what they’re armed with,” he says. “This real-time information enhances law enforcement response and enables building occupants to make critical decisions that maximise survivability." AI methods including deep learning enable high levels of accuracy in detecting weapons in real-time camera footage Tai is a Marine Corps veteran and a social entrepreneur who co-founded Actuate with the mission of addressing America’s gun violence epidemic. The start of the company stems from Tai’s upbringing in South Africa, where gun violence rates are some of the highest in the world. Growing up, several of his family friends were personally impacted, resulting in a lifelong passion for the issue of gun violence. In early 2018, Tai interviewed dozens of law enforcement leaders across the country and found that their biggest challenge in gun violence response was the lack of timely and accurate information. Actuate mitigates that challenge and enables both first responders and security staff to respond more rapidly, he says. More than 99% accuracy in detecting weapons Actuate is a software-only solution that plugs into security camera hardware and software, including VMSActuate's solution is completely AI-based, says Ben Ziomek, Chief Product Officer. AI methods including deep learning enable high levels of accuracy in detecting weapons in real-time camera footage. “Legacy, non-AI based solutions generally rely on older methods like motion detection, which is not reliable in differentiating between objects such as phones and firearms,” says Ziomek. “Our AI solution lets us achieve more than 99% accuracy in detecting weapons with an exceptionally low false-positive rate.” Ziomek runs engineering, data science, and operations for Actuate. Before joining the firm, he led teams of AI engineers and data scientists at Microsoft, leveraging AI to identify high-potential startups globally. Actuate is a software-only solution that plugs into existing security camera hardware and software, including video management systems (VMS). Existing capabilities of a customer’s VMS does initial, basic analysis and then routes the remaining video to Actuate’s processing units for AI analysis. Alerts can then be sent back however a customer wants, including through a VMS. Actuate can also feed information into a PSIM or command-and-control system if requested by a customer. Equipping customers with AI tools Our current focus for the company is to get our technology into the hands of as many customers as possible"As an early-stage company, Actuate is pursuing customers through multiple routes, including directly to end-users and via security integrators, distributors, and dealers. They are currently deployed at diverse customer sites including schools, office buildings, industrial facilities, and public buildings, says Ziomek. “Our current focus for the company is to get our technology into the hands of as many customers as possible,” says Ziomek. “We are working closely with customers across segments and industries to equip them with the tools they need to make their spaces safer. We’re currently working on educating the market on our offerings, as this technology is very new to many security organisations.” There are no privacy or compliance concerns because Actuate stores no customer data until a weapon is detected, and even then the data is not cross-indexed with any sensitive information, says Ziomek.
SMARTair® Wireless Online access management has proven a simple, school-wide electronic solution for greater control and security at Westbridge. Each staff member carries one RFID credential card programmed with access rights personalised to their individual role. In an emergency, the school can institute a complete lockdown via the centralised system. “Having a SMARTair® system in place has given us peace of mind. It’s quicker, it’s safer and it’s simple,” says Joanna Brunton, Executive Officer at Westbridge School. The school’s teaching, administration and residential buildings require multiple layers of access control, for both staff and students. The inflexibility of a legacy mechanical locking system had presented facility management and pupil safety challenges for years.“With over 50 staff, we needed more subtlety in assigning access permissions, which you simply can’t do with a bundle of metal keys,” explains Joanna Brunton, Westbridge School’s Executive Officer. New access system The system would need to be installed over the holidays for minimal disruption to the school’s busy calendar Beyond replacing and upgrading outmoded, inflexible mechanical key security, Westbridge had a number of requirements for its new access system. Devices in the new, unified system would replace piecemeal mechanical locking on 80+ doors around the site. School leaders wanted access control already proven in the field, with a track record of successful installations managing access in schools worldwide. New electronic locks must provide a real-time audit trail, so facility managers always know which doors are opened by which staff cards. The new system would also need to work within the school’s security budget — and be installed over the holidays, for minimal disruption to the school’s busy calendar. "We essentially had a safety and security need,” adds Joanna Brunton. “We needed to be able to discourage students from going where they didn’t need to be on site or redirect a student who was in a heightened state from re-entering a classroom and potentially disrupting the class or causing damage.” Wireless and battery operated SMARTair® solution has done everything we wanted it to do in terms of safety, security and monitoring" System administration is easy even for non-specialists. “I taught staff how to use the software and encode access cards,” says Kylie Bray, director at Western Lock Services, who have long managed hardware maintenance for Westbridge. “If a staff member loses their card, you can go straight in and delete it." The intuitive SMARTair® system software can open or secure individual zones, connecting to individual locks via a network of 9 hubs. “We now have the ability to set higher security for specific areas of our site, especially over the school holidays when students have gone home,” says Joanna Brunton. “Our regular maintenance contractors have their own access keys, so they just get straight on with their work without calling us to meet them for access. This keeps our time, and their costs, down. SMARTair® door devices are wireless and battery operated. Because there’s no need to run cabling to individual doors, installation was fast and cost-efficient. From a facilities management point of view, the solution has done everything we wanted it to do in terms of safety, security and monitoring,” adds Joanna.
Motorola Solutions and Avigilon Corporation, a Motorola Solutions company, announced that they have been selected to help protect Georgetown County School District (‘GCSD’) in South Carolina, USA. Serving over 9,500 students throughout its 10 elementary schools, 4 middle schools, 4 high schools, career centre and adult education centre, GCSD sought to undergo a major security upgrade to increase safety, help mitigate misconduct and offer greater ease-of-use for school administrators, security officers and law enforcement officials using the security system. Deployment of Avigilon Control Center VMS To enhance safety throughout its locations, a complete Avigilon video security system was deployed, with over 1,000 cameras including the H4A Bullet with self-learning video analytics, H4 Mini Dome and H4 Fisheye cameras, all of which helped achieve a tailored security solution for each location while allowing school security operators to leverage the benefits of real-time analytics. Avigilon Control Center video management software was also deployed to provide a more efficient way to manage video from a central location. GCSD also uses Motorola Solutions XPR 3500e radios across its locations GCSD also uses Motorola Solutions XPR 3500e radios across its locations. If suspicious activity is flagged using the Avigilon solution, security operators can quickly contact each other using the Motorola Solutions radios and take immediate action to keep students and staff safe. By using the two systems together, school officials can seamlessly improve operations from the time an emergency call is placed until after an incident is resolved. Unified security solution for schools “Georgetown County School District is an excellent example of how Motorola Solutions and Avigilon provide a unified security solution for schools,” said John Kedzierski, senior vice president, Video Security Solutions at Motorola Solutions. “We are committed to continuing to develop products and technologies that can help enhance school safety and protect what matters most: students, staff and faculty.” “The ability of Avigilon and Motorola Solutions to provide an integrated solution for security, and critical communications is quite unique and extremely valuable to us,” said Alan Walters, executive director, Safety and Risk Management at GCSD. “We selected this system knowing that it is designed with every step of the response process in mind, which can make a world of difference in the moments that matter most.”
Wintec (The Waikato Institute of Technology), established in 1924 is a major New Zealand Government-funded tertiary institution, which has three Hamilton campuses; a city site overlooking the central business district, Avalon campus on the northern outskirts of the city, and a horticultural campus at Hamilton Gardens. In addition, it has regional operations at Te Kuiti and Thames and also an office in Beijing. The Avalon campus, a ten-minute drive from the city, is home to specialist trades training facilities, a state-of the-art sport and exercise complex and custom designed facilities for the School of International Tourism, Hospitality and Events. The third Hamilton campus, the Horticultural Education Centre, is situated amidst the 58 hectares of Hamilton Gardens. On-line distance education Wintec’s programmes and qualifications are nationally and internationally recognised Wintec is one of the largest institutes of technology in New Zealand, and has more than 35,000 full-time and part-time students, more than 500 full and part time staff and eleven schools within its academic faculty. International enrolments exceed 1000 from 47 countries. A range of student services provide its domestic and international students with a high level of support so they enjoy a positive, safe and secure study experience. Wintec’s programmes and qualifications are nationally and internationally recognised and its degrees have equal status to those from universities. The degree programmes include Media Arts, Midwifery, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Early Childhood Education, Business Studies, Engineering, Technology, Information Technology, and Sport and Exercise Science and a wide range of full and part time courses for those already in the workforce. Wintec is also recognised nationally in the delivery of on-line distance education for those unable to attend regular classes for reasons of geographical access or other constraints. Electronically controlled doors Wintec strives for a balance of unobtrusive yet robust control of site activity, essential for maintaining an open campus environment. Shane Goodall, Security Manager at Wintec, describes the approach to security as highly proactive and collaborative: “by focusing on preventing issues arising, we now have a minimal policing role and the crime resolution rate is high”. This environment is underpinned by Gallagher’s security system, a core access control, intruder alarms and integration platform. Wintec first installed the Gallagher system (formerly Cardax FT) in 1999 and has since migrated this legacy system to Gallagher’s latest security technology platform. Security for the entire organisation, including satellite sites, is managed and monitored centrally from Wintec’s single Gallagher security system. Since initial installation, Wintec’s Gallagher access control system has grown from 7 to 240 electronically controlled doors in 2009, with another 40 planned - testimony to the scalability and flexibility of the system. Network friendly system communications The organisation first installed 6 cameras in 2004 which has increased to 7 DVRs and 85 cameras Wintec has integrated its imaging system to the Gallagher system delivering a visual record which can be matched to the audit trail of events in Gallagher Command Centre software. The organisation first installed 6 cameras in 2004 which has increased to 7 DVRs and 85 cameras (both analogue and IP). Another compelling aspect of the system for Wintec is the scalability and TCP/IP network friendly system communications. As well as monitoring and controlling staff and student access, equipment including computers, TVs, printers, audio visual resources at Wintec are also monitored through the Gallagher system. The ‘Gallagher Hub’, a new computer laboratory offering comprehensive IT resources is open 24 hours. The Hub contains 125 workstations, and there are plans to extend that number. Active monitoring of equipment though the Gallagher system has significantly reduced theft. Students and staff have scheduled access to shared IT resources, classrooms and lecture theatres. Manage cardholder data ‘Cardholder Import’, an XML Interface, supports the importation of cardholder data including course enrolments from their student record system to Gallagher Command Centre. Shane comments, “Student card issuing is an automated process which is enrolment-driven – a student’s access privileges are assigned according to their enrolled courses.” “To implement this, we defined a rules-based allocation of access groups in the Gallagher system using the XML interface. The interface is ‘live’ so that changes in the student enrolments database are immediately reflected in the Gallagher system. The student’s updated access privileges come into effect without delay.” Staff that interact directly with students are now empowered to manage cardholder data enabling the security team to focus on security. Students and staff utilise Mifare SmartCard functionality extensively, embracing them as an integral multiapplication tool in their modern educational environment – SmartCards are used to issue resources from the library and as pre-stored value cards enabling prepaid printing and photocopying. In the near future they will also be used in Wintec’s Pay and Display car-park and potentially as passes onto city council buses. Electronic access control At Wintec, security is not viewed as a discrete functional activity relegated to security staff only Stewart Brougham, Director of Internationalisation at Wintec, says students have given very positive feedback about their ID cards. In particular, the ability to verify the identity of staff members from their ID access cards provides peace of mind for students. The end result is a people-friendly campus. Future enhancements of Wintec’s security may include the utilisation of the CommCard solution from Gallagher to manage and monitor access to student accommodation. CommCard is a unique high level integration between the Gallagher Command Centre software and Salto off-line readers, delivering offline, non-monitored electronic access control for lower security doors. An overriding philosophy of collaboration has seen Wintec take a lateral approach to security, the value of which many organisations have yet to realise. At Wintec, security is not viewed as a discrete functional activity relegated to security staff only. The ongoing management of security is a joint effort between the security services team and the information services team. Increasing operational security The security services team manages the Gallagher system while IT looks after back end functions such as installation on the network and backup. Wintec has leveraged the convergence of security (access control) and other operational business functions recognising the tremendous potential for reducing risk and increasing operational security, safety, performance and efficiency. Looking beyond simply controlling and monitoring who goes where and when on site, Wintec is harnessing the reporting capabilities of Gallagher Command Centre to meet regulatory requirements. The Gallagher system enables the institution to report on actual space utilisation (not just space booking). Decisions are made for best use, and also to substantiate funding, based on these reports. “The key to space utilisation reporting are the frequency of reporting and the integrity and reliability of information,” states Stewart Brougham. It’s a national issue for educational institutes in New Zealand. Extending external partnerships “For Wintec, reporting is about ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements and is also a staff time management issue – reducing the administration load on lecturers, who would otherwise have to track student attendance manually.” Brian Fleming, Director of Gallagher Channel Partner, Concord Technologies, sites this lateral application of a security system as key to maximising the value of Gallagher to Wintec. Wintec has a strong relationship with Gallagher in the ongoing development of its technologies This collaborative philosophy extends to proactive external partnerships with their Gallagher Channel Partner, Concord Technologies, for the installation and maintenance of the Gallagher system, and with system designer and manufacturer, Gallagher. Having signed an agreement to continue in the capacity of a Gallagher field test site, Wintec has a strong relationship with Gallagher in the ongoing development of its technologies. Wintec’s success, in the last 5 years, as a test site reflects the competence of both its IT and security staff and the institute’s commitment to edge student services. Minimal training has been required. Software maintenance agreement There is open communication and information sharing between all internal and external parties involved, which means any issues that arise can be quickly addressed. Wintec has committed to a site maintenance plan with their security partner, Concord Technologies. The plan incorporates both software and hardware maintenance to ensure the system is maintained on the latest operating platforms within a known cost structure. A Software Maintenance Agreement also ensures enhanced ongoing system performance and reliability of the Gallagher system. Acknowledgements Gallagher would like to acknowledge the support of Wintec and security partner, Concord, with the development of this in-site study. Gallagher would also like to particularly acknowledge and thank Shane Goodall for the pivotal role he plays in championing the collaboration of these parties and for his outstanding support of the Northern Region Cardax User Group (NZ) in the capacity of Chairman of the group.
One French town just north of Paris faced familiar key management challenges. Each person in their Municipal Technical Centre had to carry approximately forty physical keys. If a single key was lost or stolen, for even one door, all compromised cylinders had to be changed. To prevent unauthorised access, all the keys had to be replaced, too — at great expense. Key duplication costs were mounting. “One lost key cost from €3,000 to €4,000 for changing cylinders and replacing the keys,” explains Fabrice Girard, Territorial Technician at the Villiers-le-Bel Municipal Technical Centre. Administrators can program access rights for every CLIQ key, padlock or cylinder using the Web ManagerTo fix their expensive lost key problem, Villiers-le-Bel city administrators chose to combine ABLOY’s mechanical PROTEC2 and CLIQ electromechanical locking within the same flexible, key-based access control system. Almost 500 CLIQ wireless cylinders, 850 programmable, battery-powered CLIQ keys, plus programming devices and wireless CLIQ padlocks, have been deployed in a multi-year, rolling upgrade programme. CLIQ Web Manager software Now, with CLIQ, lost or stolen keys are cancelled instantly using the CLIQ Web Manager software. The Web Manager works securely inside a standard browser, with no software installation needed. Administrators can program access rights for every CLIQ key, padlock or cylinder using the Web Manager. They filter access to specific sites and doors according to the precise needs of every city employee. “CLIQ Web Manager is a very easy and pleasant system to use every day,” says Fabrice Girard. CLIQ also saves time for the city’s security team, because staff no longer must return to the Technical Centre to collect the keys for multiple sites. Authorised users carry a single, programmable, battery-powered CLIQ key, where all their individually tailored access rights are stored. Wireless system to enhance safety We wanted a wireless system with reduced maintenance costs and increased safety"“We wanted a wireless system with reduced maintenance costs and increased safety,” adds Fabrice Girard. “CLIQ met all these requirements.” The city has already rolled out CLIQ beyond their Municipal Technical Centre to 10 local schools. Using the CLIQ Web Manager, security staff can track exactly who has been granted access to every school site — critical for these sensitive premises and to improving overall school safety. Plans are in place to equip Villiers-le-Bel’s 12 remaining schools with CLIQ within 2 to 3 years, including canteens and boiler rooms. Because CLIQ can be deployed and scaled flexibly, the city’s dedicated security budget funds this gradual extension of their CLIQ system. CLIQ® technology is secure, user-friendly and scalable across multiple sites — and already trusted in schools, colleges and universities all over Europe. To learn more about CLIQ® key access control, visit campaigns.assaabloyopeningsolutions.eu/cliq
St Peter’s School, Cambridge, is an independent, co-educational secondary school in New Zealand. With over 1,000 students, 450 students living on site, and approximately 350 staff, St Peter’s is one of the largest boarding schools in the country. Around the clock site security and facilities management is imperative to ensure safety and deliver optimum operational efficiency. St Peter’s originally contacted Gallagher more than ten years ago for main gate security and access control for their gymnasium to assist with facility hire. “We needed a system that was modular, discreet, scalable, SQL based, and that allowed us to add and retrieve information via OPC,” said Gareth Pryce, ICT Manager at St Peter’s School. Since installation, the scale of the Gallagher system has grown considerably. St Peter’s has now integrated the Gallagher Security solution as their building management system on an impressive scale and the return on this investment has been significant. Central management software solution In buildings where we have purely installed the Gallagher system and nothing else, we are achieving a 30% energy saving"Gallagher’s central management software solution Command Centre is utilised to control all aspects of facilities management at St Peter’s School. The Gallagher solution monitors and controls heating, lighting, air conditioning, PIR’s, windows, read status and doors open/closed within all St Peter’s rooms. The installation of smart electricity meters, which can identify and quantify savings, is being utilised to measure and report energy savings across the site. “In buildings where we have purely installed the Gallagher system and nothing else, we are achieving a 30% energy saving,” said Gareth. “Return on investment is being seen within 6 to 24 months of a complete solution being installed, dependent upon the type of heating system and the staff within the building.” As a direct result of the Gallagher installation, an additional saving for the school on plant investment has been identified. Specifically, this can be seen in an increase in the life span of air conditioning units due to their reduced usage and the removal of time clocks on site due to the system’s ability to control all individual systems. Monitoring swimming pool temperature Command Centre helps to automatically facilitate health and safety protocols within the swimming pool complexSt Peter’s School’s continued commitment to fully utilising the capabilities of the Gallagher system is evident in their most recent additions of an indoor swimming pool facility and Junior School building. The Gallagher system for the indoor pool has been configured to monitor the pool temperature, humidity, chlorine and wind direction. Business rules have been added to deliver appropriate responses, including the determination of whether to engage extractor fans, increase water filtration, or open the windows for passive ventilation. With complete control over all systems, Command Centre helps to automatically facilitate health and safety protocols within the swimming pool complex. An example of this can be seen in the way in which chlorination is monitored. Should the system detect a high level of chlorine in the water or atmosphere, windows are automatically opened for ventilation, the pump speed is increased to help restore chlorine levels in the water, and the access control system denies entry to the pool area until the monitors identify that the chlorine level has reduced. Integrating database with Command Centre St Peter’s has integrated their student database with Gallagher’s Command Centre software management platformSt Peter’s has integrated their student database – Synergetic – with Gallagher’s Command Centre software management platform, providing a single source of data and one central point of reference. This interface allows St Peter’s to create, update and remove individuals and their access groups within Synergetic and this information automatically updates the access control system. This ensures that any updates made in Synergetic are reflected in real-time in the Gallagher system, proving invaluable in terms of time efficiency, administration and reducing the margin for error. St Peter’s has an impeccable reputation for safety and security. Through the Command Centre platform, the school has managed to implement a highly efficient one-touch system to deliver enhanced site security for Assistance, Critical Incidents, and Full Site Lockdown. Contacting campus security team Utilising any computer on site, both staff and students are able to quickly and easily contact the campus security team for assistance including an escort to their car after hours. Controlled by Command Centre, an Assistance request sends an SMS and email to security personnel identifying through the access control system the name and exact location of the staff member or student. Selected personnel on site have system permissions to initiate a full site lockdown across the campus Again, utilising any computer on the campus, a Critical Incident can be registered in a single, simple, action. The system then alerts the Critical Incident team (including registered nurses, and staff trained in Critical Incident Stress Management) via SMS and email, providing information on the location where the incident has occurred. Initiating full site lockdown Selected personnel on site have system permissions to initiate a full site lockdown across the campus. This action can be achieved via any computer on site. Command Centre also sends an immediate notification to local police that the school is in lockdown. Simultaneously, all buildings across the site automatically respond to the lockdown by closing windows, locking doors, and initiating air conditioning to maintain the temperature. St Peter’s is committed to further reducing their carbon footprint through reducing energy use. During 2015, the school will invest even further control in their Gallagher system by installing heat recovery units which will eliminate the need for air conditioning at certain times of the year. “It’s about seamless system management,” said Gareth, “because of that control, we’ve experienced very real energy and cost savings.”
One of the fastest growing districts in the upper Midwest of the United States, Harrisburg in South Dakota educates almost 4000 students across eight schools. Gallagher Command Centre was selected as the only solution that could meet the district’s security requirements, and in October 2015, these security measures were put to the test when the local high school was the target of a shooting. The incident resulted in one staff member being injured but was prevented from escalating further due to Gallagher’s central management platform, Command Centre, being activated by staff. Logs from the incident confirm that from the time the emergency button was pressed, it took just four seconds for Command Centre to lock all outside doors, notify district authorities, and limit building access to emergency responders only. Physical barriers for students’ security Gallagher Command Centre was involved with placing physical barriers between an active gunman and high school students"James Straatmeyer, Chief Executive Officer of Integrated Technology & Security, partnered with Gallagher for the installation of Harrisburg districts security solution. James says, “Gallagher Command Centre was directly involved with placing physical barriers between an active gunman and hundreds of high school students filling 37 classrooms. As far as I’m aware, there’s no other product on the market that has the capabilities and integration solutions for protecting students and staff to the extent of Gallagher Command Centre.” This type of security alert is of increasing concern for many educational institutions, prompting renewed focus on daily security protocols. Integrated and scalable security system Essential to providing an optimum learning environment for students is ensuring their safety and security – a responsibility the district of Harrisburg takes extremely seriously. Key to this was partnering with a security solutions provider that understood the specific needs of educational institutions, with the flexibility to employ customised features that could be tailored to Harrisburg’s particular requirements. The system needed to be fully integrated, scalable and expandable, digitally based, user-friendly The system needed to be fully integrated, scalable and expandable, digitally based, user-friendly and crucially, to assist and not replace, existing manual security procedures. Gallagher and South Dakota based Integrated Technology & Security completed the initial installation within three weeks. Since its introduction, the system has been under continual expansion. Features of updated security solution The access control system originally installed in 2013, fulfilled the region’s initial security requirements; however, a period of growth prompted the need for an enhanced system that could protect the increasing number of students. Some of the features of Harrisburg’s upgraded security solution included: Outlook calendar integration, to enable scheduling of access for special events Intercom / phone integration, to control doors from a desktop icon or smartphone Strobe light control to provide lockdown notifications in hearing impaired areas such as deaf education, shops and the gym Intercom integration for lockdown announcements Command Centre provides enterprise level lockdown controls which limit access to buildings, control fire doors, and send notifications, while providing an audit trail and video alerts. Lockdown access to all staff members An understanding of the benefits of an advanced, interactive security network is essential, and in some cases, lifesavingUsability is a highlight of Command Centre, offering access for all levels of personnel. Initially, only office and administrative staff were trained in the use of lockdown systems, but as the Command Centre’s lockdown features have developed, all staff members can now control access in individual school buildings. Once a lockdown has been activated, a notification is automatically issued to district authorities, immediately alerting emergency services if required. The security incident in 2015 strongly supported Harrisburg district’s decision to install a sophisticated access control system to protect its faculty, staff and students. At a time when concern over campus security is rising, an understanding of the benefits of an advanced, interactive security network is essential, and in some cases, lifesaving. Gallagher’s security solution offers educational institutions around the world a combination of enhanced operational efficiency and cost savings. Command Centre’s software provides a powerful and versatile feature set, enabling system operators to configure, monitor and control their unique security system.
Round table discussion
Securing large campus environments can be particularly demanding and requires a range of technology solutions. In effect, a campus may represent a dozen or more individual facilities to be secured, in addition to protecting the overall environment. Seeking more insight into the number and variety of needs of securing a campus, we asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the security challenges of protecting large campus environments?
The new school year is a good time to reflect on the role of security in protecting our schools. From video to access control to some newer technologies, our Expert Panel Roundtable found plenty to talk about when we asked this week’s question: How does security technology make our schools safer?
There will be more artificial intelligence, more machine learning, video systems with more capabilities, and all of it will add greater value to our solutions. Those are among the expectations of our Expert Panel Roundtable as they collectively look ahead to the remainder of 2019. One unexpected prediction is that AI will not prove to be a game changer – at least not yet. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What will be the biggest surprise for security in the second half of 2019?