Current security and hygiene-protocols require special measures for access to buildings and rooms. This can lead to bottlenecks especially when there are large numbers of people and poses special challenges for many companies. Protecting the health of employees, visitors and customers have a top priority. The risk of production downtime in the event of a quarantine measure is very high. Hygiene concepts reduce the risk of infection, but also tie up valuable human resources. Vital tasks of IRM...
The implications of COVID-19 have been profound, and the road to business recovery is evolving and fluid. Facility providers around the world are shifting priorities. The focus was once creating a workplace that promotes employee productivity and company values. Now, it’s ensuring that the workplace, and everyone who enters it, remain safe and healthy. With all the coronavirus uncertainty, it might feel strange to start working on how to open offices again. But no matter whether offices a...
Safetrust, a pioneer in virtual credential solutions, and AlertEnterprise Inc., the foremost physical-logical security convergence software company, have entered into a strategic partnership to deliver next-generation digital access credentialing and controls, providing frictionless, safe and secure workspace access experience for employees, contingent workers and visitors. Benefits of collaboration The collaboration reinforces the new way businesses are defining smart and healthy workplaces,...
Grappling with risks prompted by COVID-19 and escalating violence, Americans prefer modern, touchless security screening systems over legacy metal detectors. They expect their schools, workplaces and ticketed venues to ensure social distancing and would abandon their plans rather than enter a facility with crowded security lines. These and other insights were released by Evolv Technology based on a new survey conducted by The Harris Poll. The survey was conducted online with more than 1,500 Ame...
Integrated Design Limited (IDL) has developed a new cost-effective and rapidly deployable entrance control solution that can help business owners adhere to COVID-19 social distancing guidelines and help keep staff and customers safe. Based on existing, proven technology, the Integrated Design Limited’s customised Door Detective Compact entrance control solution has been adapted to enable robust and straightforward population monitoring and control at single entrance doorways. Door Detect...
Cash infusion will help accelerate the installation of its proprietary weapons detection platform in schools, commercial buildings, and government sites ZeroEyes, the only AI-based platform focused solely on weapons detection, announced that it has secured $1.5 million in funding, led by Grateful Investments with participation from Legion Capital, Backswing Ventures, Natoma Group, and angel investors, bringing the total amount raised to $4 million. The majority of the round was raised in March,...
With schools and universities reopening across the country, the safety of students and staff has never been more important. Security expert Mul-T-Lock recognises that every educational facility has a different security requirement and effective management of everyone who comes and goes is paramount, not only to save time and expense, but to also tighten security. For schools that are looking to upgrade or extend their current master key suite, Mul-T-Lock offers a wide range of cost effective solutions to address the varying needs of education buildings. Providing enhanced security These incorporate patented mechanical and electro-mechanical technology, providing enhanced security with increased control over access; at the same time reducing the number of keys that can be lost or stolen. Mul-T-Lock’s master key platforms are customisable depending on requirements, with a wide range of products including various lock and cylinder types. Mul-T-Lock has also recently launched a new antibacterial key solution The system is designed to serve dynamic and growing environments, so each master key solution is scalable to suit an education building’s needs both today and in the future. Mul-T-Lock has also recently launched a new antibacterial key solution, providing a more hygienic solution for education applications. The keys feature an antibacterial plastic head that contain an agent that suppresses the growth and spread of unwanted bacteria. Lower bacterial contamination The new keys have been successfully tested to ISO 22196, showing significantly lower bacterial contamination compared to other keys. If education facilities want to move away from mechanical to an access control solution, Mul-T-Lock specialises in a number of systems that can help. Mul-T-Lock also recognises that whilst access control is a fundamental element of security in higher education especially, many aging systems urgently need to be upgraded. According to a recent survey, higher education security and IT professionals are ready to embrace more modern technology as a way of improving the experience for students and staff. The findings showed that over half (54.2%) of respondents want to unify their access control credentials to support multiple applications whilst 44% want better integration with other security systems. Wireless locking system With SMARTair®, lost cards can be cancelled, and replacement cards reprogrammed for increased security Now that education buildings should provide a safe and hygienic environment with reduced touch-points for pupils and staff, Mul-T-Lock’s SMARTair® access control system replaces keys with a wireless locking system operated by smartcards and even smartphones when used in conjunction with Mul-T-Lock’s Openow™ app. With SMARTair®, lost cards can be cancelled, and replacement cards reprogrammed for increased security. The system can be tailored to meet each building’s needs and can be reprogrammed using the latest in access control management software as those needs evolve, without having to replace any physical locking systems – making it a cost effective and straightforward solution for all education buildings. Controlling access rights With no hardwiring, the system can be installed at low cost with minimal disruption to education facilities. Designated system managers can also monitor and control access rights – allowing personnel access when needed and revoking access once it is no longer required. By utilising the Openow™ app, facilities managers and security administrators can instantly send, revoke or update virtual keys from the designated SMARTair® software or web browser allowing staff to access specific buildings or rooms via their smartphone. System managers can be anywhere in the world when controlling access rights; making the whole process more convenient and secure for everyone. This also significantly reduces whole life costing, as it removes the need to replace key cards when they are misplaced.
RS2 Technologies, a provider of access control systems, announces the availability of free mobile credentials for its innovation-rich platforms, such as Access It! Universal.NET, through its partnership with WaveLynx Technologies. The partnership allows RS2 to provide its customers with safe and secure access via mobile phone to doors in office buildings, government facilities, healthcare institutions, schools, residences and a growing number of enterprises. Access control system Available on both iOS and Android smartphones, the mobile credentials are easy to issue and use to grant and restrict access to users and visitors without having to issue key cards or fobs. The mobile credentials are easy to issue and use to grant and restrict access to users and visitors The WaveLynx Technologies integration with Access It! Universal.NET allows a seamless and touchless enrolment into the access control system. The application does not require any subscriptions or fees, making it an extremely flexible and affordable solution that allows organisations to transition to mobile access at their own pace. Mobile-based credentials “Adding the capabilities of the WaveLynx credentials provides RS2 customers with another way to grant access across a variety of enterprise organisations that prioritise functionality and ease-of-use for their access control systems,” said Jeff Bransfield, National Sales Manager, RS2 Technologies. “The use of our mobile devices as a means to access a facility is growing in popularity and the team at WaveLynx has brought that ability to RS2’s customers with its level of accessibility that we haven’t seen before. As this demand for touchless access and streamlined credential issuance grows in popularity, there will be a real opportunity across the market to adopt mobile-based credentials for a broader audience.”
ACRE, a globally renowned provider of security products and solutions for the access control, intrusion, smart traffic and video surveillance markets, has announced that the ACRE brands – RS2, Vanderbilt and Open Options – will launch ACT ID, a new cloud-based mobile credential application that enables organisations to utilise both iOS and Android smartphones with existing WaveLynx multi-technology readers for secure access to doors in office buildings, government facilities, healthcare institutions, schools, residences and a growing variety of enterprises. ACT ID cloud-based mobile credential solution ACT ID features zero-touch, cloud-issued credentials for enrollment into a user’s access control system. The application does not require any subscriptions or fees, making it an extremely flexible and affordable solution that allows organisations to transition to mobile access at their own pace. “ACRE and its brands provide some of the industry’s most sought-after access control systems and solutions for customers across a variety of markets,” said Laurie Aaron, Executive Vice President, WaveLynx Technologies. Risk-free mobile access solution Laurie adds, “Through this integration, we’re able to provide additional functionality and risk-free mobile access solutions for end users to adopt as they update and expand their access control systems.” “Mobility is an integral part of the goal of forward-thinking enterprise organisations, as more organisations look for way to leverage more touchless access control and seamless visitor management tools,” said Kim Loy, Chief Product Officer, ACRE. Touchless access control solutions Kim adds, “Partnering with WaveLynx across the ACRE organisation allows our brands to capitalise on this demand from the market and diversify their ability to provide secure, convenient mobile security options to partners and customers alike.”
At the official launch of CyberCenturion Vll, Nick Chaffey, Chief Executive, UK, Europe and Middle East, Northrop Grumman announced that the 2020/21 focus of the competition will be on encouraging greater diversity in the cyber security sector. CyberCenturion VII is open to all secondary school students in the UK, UK Crown Dependencies and UK Overseas Territories and starts in October 2020 with the national finals due to take place in April 2021. CyberCenturion is the UK edition of the global CyberPatriot programme, sponsored and led by Northrop Grumman, designed by the U.S. Air Force Association and delivered in the UK in partnership with the Cyber Security Challenge UK. Cyber security teams “Our mission at Northrop Grumman is to recruit, develop and retain the most talented employees, and that means having access to the most diverse talent pool to ensure that our cyber security teams retain a vigour and dynamism that matches the challenges in our sector,” Chaffey said at the virtual launch. “We believe that continuing to create a work force and a workplace that is diverse and values diversity and fosters inclusion is both the right thing to do and pivotal to delivering innovation. It will take time for CyberCenturion to reach every school in every neighbourhood, but we are asking for your support to achieve this important aim.” Crack cyber crime If COVID-19 restrictions prevent a face-to-face final in 2021, the final will take place as a virtual event CyberCenturion is a UK-wide competition which gives secondary school pupils the opportunity to develop and bring a myriad of skills into play to crack cyber crime. The multi-round event, for which there is no fee to participate, culminates in a national final for the highest scoring teams. If COVID-19 restrictions prevent a face-to-face final in 2021, in line with qualifying rounds, the final will take place as a virtual event. CyberCenturion VII is adopting the theme of space, to highlight the unlimited opportunity that young people from all backgrounds in cyber security have, linked to the pioneering work Northrop Grumman does in space. This ranges from the historic Lunar Module, the vehicle that landed men on the moon, to the Mission Extension Vehicle (MEV) and James Webb Space Telescope. Inspirational people Nitya Sri Adapala is a past winner of CyberCenturion: “It opened my eyes and those of my teammates to a whole world of inspirational people that we could talk to and learn from. As a direct result of entering CyberCenturion, the enrolment onto Computer Sciences at our school went from 3 people to 18 - it’s been fantastic and I do feel proud of myself and my teammates for encouraging girls into the industry.”
Amthal is working in partnership with Frank Cooper & Son, across a number of school security program of works, to ensure perimeter protection is achieved to exceed Ofsted standards. With security always being a vital ingredient for any school or college in protecting its students, staff and visitors, the additional inclusion into Ofsted inspections is leading many schools to review current standards. Says Simon Cooper of Frank Cooper & Son: “On a basic level, Ofsted inspectors need a school to demonstrate it has taken reasonable steps to ensure pupils are safe on the school site. This is right from the site boundaries to monitoring visitors or volunteers as well as having adequate security arrangements for the grounds and school buildings.” Maintenance and monitoring services “We have worked with Amthal for many years focusing on supporting schools to help, support and advice on the best security strategies to ensure Ofsted expectations are achieved. And in doing so, provide vital assurances that school security does not need to feel prison-like. Bespoke, often colourful perimeter solutions can be created to complement and protect our essential learning environments.” Access control solutions and CCTV can also be analysed to direct those entering and exiting a school Amthal operates with Frank Cooper & Son right from the initial design process through to installation, working around learning timetables to ensure minimal disruption to school timetables, and following up with essential maintenance and monitoring services. Access control solutions and CCTV can also be analysed to direct those entering and exiting a school and monitor pedestrian movement more efficiently. This can reduce the risk of crime in schools. Healthy learning environment Jamie Allam, CEO of Amthal Fire and Security adds: “School grounds protected by secure perimeters and good access control surveillance systems are the foundation of a healthy learning environment, supported by alertness and a coherent awareness of risk management.” “It’s why we choose to work in partnership with specialists such as Frank Cooper & Son, to ensure schools not only pass Ofsted with flying colours, but also offers a well-maintained system that complies with building safety regulations. All this brought together enables a school to honour its duty of care to provide peace of mind for its staff, pupils, parents and visitors on an ongoing basis.”
If one has ever settled a bill for changing one’s office locks and thought if there were a better way. In fact, there is. Access control and digital keys are easier and more cost effective than one can imagine. While mechanical keys will keep a building secure, they lack the flexibility to adapt to one’s changing security needs. Standard physical keys are difficult to track without a key management system. Physical keys When a key goes missing, changing a standard mechanical lock or rekeying is time-consuming and often expensive Some types of key are quite straightforward to cut without permission. And when a key goes missing, changing a standard mechanical lock or rekeying is time-consuming and often expensive — 100€ or more every time. Yet the alternative — electronic access control — can seem daunting, over-technical and potentially expensive. But this need not be the case, if one chooses the right wireless access control system. The basics of digital locking Best wireless access control systems lets one choose the format to suit one’s business Everything begins with the credential — the digital key one’s building users will carry at all times. Credentials can be plastic smart cards, fobs, wristbands or even stored in a secure mobile phone app. The best wireless access control systems lets one choose the format to suit one’s business, and even to mix different types of credential in the same building. When one swaps keys for credentials, one brings enhanced flexibility to building security. Most importantly, if someone loses their credential, one can cancel it with a click. One would never rekey or change the locks again. Access control system for intrusion detection One can program and reprogram credentials and wireless door locks as many times as one likes Electronic access control is highly flexible. So, if some staff should have access everywhere, but others only through the main door, it is easy to program the system to allow just that. Plus, one can program and reprogram credentials and wireless door locks as many times as one like: employees leaving or joining the company create very little workload. If the worst happens and there’s an unexpected incident — unauthorised intrusion or theft — an access control system helps one handle it quickly and efficiently. Because everyone carries personalised credentials, the system software will tell one who went where and when. Yet another occasion when wireless access systems save time and money. Wireless locks for workplace security It takes only one day to switch a medium-sized office from mechanical lock-and-key security to digital credentials A modern, wireless system with digital door locks, programmable credentials and user-friendly software (to keep it all running) is easy, affordable and fast to install. It takes only one day to switch a medium-sized office from mechanical lock-and-key security to digital credentials. There’s no major cabling, no major adjustments around one’s existing doors and almost no noisy, dirty drilling. All over Europe — at offices and sports venues, schools and university dorms, co-working spaces and medical practices — SMARTair wireless locks have transformed workplace security. SMARTair management software SMARTair battery-powered cylinders, escutcheons, security locks and readers are fast to fit and can protect almost any door or access point, from boardrooms and storerooms to fire escapes and lifts. Little or no training is needed to use SMARTair’s management software: when one’s installer departs, hardware and software will be ready to go. One spends six months of one’s lives looking for lost things. Metal keys don’t have to be among them. SMARTair wireless security turns mechanical labours into key-free, happy workplaces.
Schools play a key role in shaping our future. Following the reopening of classrooms up and down the country, young minds are returning to some normality. Once again they're being inspired, learning useful skills, and forging new interests to ensure our country's continued prosperity. Schools need a comprehensive security infrastructure to protect the children who attend them. Most notably, secure perimeters that keep unwanted people out, but also ensure visitors, parents, and students alike can access their shared community space without feeling segregated or unwelcome. Robust boundary fencing However, although safety is often the primary concern of parents, with tighter budgetary constraints and funds prioritised to make schools COVID safe, it can be all too easy to let important perimeter replacement or improvement programmes slip. The purpose of boundary fencing is to restrict unauthorised entry and exit The purpose of boundary fencing is to restrict unauthorised entry and exit from school grounds, and should be specifically designed to be fit for purpose. Opting for fencing with a welded pale-through-rail construction and concealed anti-tamper connectors between fence panels and posts delivers a robust boundary that's virtually impossible to break through. This style of fencing also gives a better finish with no visible joints or unsightly bolts. Attractive and practical solutions Unlike generic riveted palisade fencing, this solution is both attractive and practical, more so now that LPS 1175 SR1 certified and Secured by Design versions are available. The style of fencing should meet a school's desired security and safety requirements, simultaneously, it should not compromise on aesthetic considerations. As part of the public face of the school, it should be attractive as well as functional, helping overcome any concerns of creating a prison-like environment and promote a sense of well-being. It's recommended that perimeter fencing should be: a minimum of two metres high, vandal-resistant and sturdy, grounded on a hard surface, challenging to scale, and have an anti-climb topping, much the same as a high-security option. Access all areas Each educational site must consider the number of necessary entrances A perimeter fence requires secure access points and gates. Each educational site must consider the number of necessary entrances. These should be kept to a minimum, to make it easier to maintain control of visitor movement. However, in larger schools this is not always possible and additional entrances may be required to prevent potentially dangerous congestion at the start and end of the school day. Furthermore, separate gates must be installed for vehicles and pedestrians to ensure they are kept at a safe distance, and avoid unnecessary openings of large, double leaf gates. All access points should be locked during the day to keep students on-site and prevent intruders from gaining access to school grounds. Gates should ideally be matched in design, height and construction to the fencing, to prevent creating vulnerable areas and compromising security. Automatic vs manual While automatic gates offer more control, manual gates shouldn't be overlooked. Not only are they easier to install and usually cheaper than automated gates, but they also don't rely on power, so if your site's supply is cut off, they provide a hassle-free exit. Furthermore, gates that are only used at the start and end of the day can be easily locked manually by staff. However, automated gates do offer welcome flexibility, as they include access control devices such as remote controls, keypads and card readers, which will also increase the school's security. They're also robust and heavy, meaning it's incredibly difficult to force them open. Electric gates offer additional versatility with a choice of either full automation, or a hybrid of manned and automatic security, with staff able to allow visitors access via intercom or video system. Securing outdoor facilities It’s also essential to consider outdoor areas when it comes to specifying security options for educational environments. Specialist security fencing should be specified where recreational areas double up as the school’s boundary fencing. The security of the site's sports facilities will also need to be considered. Commonly known as MUGAs (Multi-Use Games Areas), enclosures can be designed with specialist mesh systems to allow multiple sports to be played in the same location while providing safety to participants, spectators and buildings. When it comes to play areas in nurseries and junior schools, installing RoSPA approved and BS EN 1176 compliant fencing and gates is recommended. These are available in both timber and steel options and tested for their ability to provide a safe fencing and gate solution - designed to reduce the risk of limb entrapment. Acoustic fencing is also worth considering for these environments, particularly in urban areas or where housing is close to school play areas. It can help reduce incoming ambient noise from neighbouring busy roads, railway lines, or construction sites, and contain the school noise within its boundary. Offering sufficient protection Focus on learning unimpeded by threat The current generation of children deserve an environment where they can focus on learning unimpeded by threat. Schools need robust perimeter solutions that welcome pupils, offer peace of mind to parents, and provide them with sufficient protection against intruders. Ultimately, it's the responsibility of the head teachers to engage in dialogue with knowledgeable security professionals to get the most appropriate and effective security solutions for their school, staff and students.
Look who’s talking about the top issues in the physical security industry in 2019. Our website’s Expert Panel Roundtable discussions in 2019 reflected some of the most timely and important topics in the industry. The very most-clicked-on Expert Panel Roundtable discussion in 2019 was about the year before – reviewing what caused disruptions in 2018. The second most popular was about 2019, the year ahead. Other hot topics that made the Top-10 list of roundtable discussions included what makes a good security salesperson, the need for greater cybersecurity awareness, and how millennials are changing the industry. Here is a roundup of the Top 10 Expert Panel Roundtable discussions posted in 2019, along with a “sound bite” from each discussion and links back to the full articles. Thanks to everyone who contributed to Expert Panel Roundtable in 2019 (including the quotable panelists named and linked below). 1. What caused the most disruption in 2018 in the physical security space? “The industry is in the midst of a dynamic technology revolution, and we are seeing increased use of security solutions that leverage machine-based learning, artificial intelligence, and robotics. This past year, the market embraced these emerging technologies, with a myriad of solutions now being embedded with these capabilities, including IP cameras, access control systems, security robots, and drones.” – Travis Deyle, Cobalt Robotics 2. What technology trend will have the biggest impact on physical security in 2019? “IoT (Internet of Things) will continue to make us more efficient. We’re already seeing the increased integration of IoT devices into enterprise-level solutions. The rise in city-living is also putting pressure on infrastructure, so it will become increasingly important for the truly smart and safe city to move beyond a vision into reality.” – Jamie Barnfield, IDIS 3. What are the security challenges of hospitals and the healthcare industry? “Preventing security incidents is a priority and a challenge for healthcare directors. Traditionally, the success of a healthcare facility’s safety program has been equated to the number of issues that warranted a response; though, the simple number of emergency responses is not helpful in preventing the same situations from occurring again.” – Julie Brown, Johnson Controls 4. What characteristics do salespeople require in the physical security industry? “To be a good salesperson, you must understand each customer’s needs and help them solve their problems. In physical security, this need is typically some kind of risk mitigation – guarding themselves and their organisations against threats, danger and liability. This makes the conversation more fraught than if you were selling a business product such as lighting, HR software or insurance, since ultimately you are talking about people’s lives and livelihoods.” – Dave Whitis, Boon Edam 5. How does security technology make our schools safer? “IP-based physical security solutions can help deliver safer environments so that students, staff, and faculty can focus on learning. Video surveillance provides a live and recorded visual representation of what’s happening across a school and can readily be called upon to access important information during an investigation. Electronic access control on doors and barriers not only regulates who goes where, but also provides protection for property and assets.” – Terry Schulenberg, Genetec 6. Is greater awareness helping to increase cybersecurity? “On a daily basis, we hear of widely publicised cybersecurity incidents which affect our customer’s businesses, peace of mind, and assets. This new world is one the physical security industry has not been familiar with. What follows these well-publicised events is frustration and confusion, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses. Confusion then leads to application of ineffective security tools or, worse, inaction.” – Drew Alexander, STANLEY Security 7. What security markets are likely to embrace AI? “Transportation seems to be the market that could benefit the most from embracing artificial intelligence. As it relates to people tracking, AI could single out deviating behavior, such as someone walking against the flow of rush-hour traffic, and in turn could initiate a real-time response so authorities can determine whether or not intervening is necessary.” – Per Björkdahl, ONVIF 8. How are Millennials changing the security industry? “Over the last few years, we’ve seen the Millennial generation have a profound impact on the security industry, and this is largely due to the fact that those born in this time period have a very knowledgeable and in-depth experience with technology. Millennials are accustomed to smart devices, automation and at-your-fingertips accessibility, which has created new and unfamiliar demands when it comes to security systems and solutions.” – Ron Virden, ACRE 9. What are the mainstream uses for thermal cameras? “Thermal cameras have been the go-to solution for perimeter protection applications for decades. This year, we’re seeing more integrations of thermal cameras with other solutions like radar to improve redundancy, long-range detection and alarm verification for airports and other large sites. Thanks to new technology partnerships and thermal offerings, customers are seeing the value of thermal beyond traditional use cases.” – Fredrik Wallberg, FLIR Systems 10. How do software improvements drive physical security? “Software improvements ultimately drive greater interoperability among technology partners and system integration in physical security solutions. From a surveillance standpoint, software is also increasingly used to enhance system performance and overall longevity by identifying anomalies. For example, to ensure video data is preserved and not lost, customers are using health monitoring software on surveillance hard drives.” – Jessica Burton, Seagate Technology
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 institutions are large and sometimes sprawling sites that present considerable fire and security challenges. From kindergarten to university Each education site brings distinct challenges, with differing facilities and specialties, as well as the need to maintain the capacity of students, teachers and lecturers to study, learn and teach at the high level expected.Each education site brings distinct challenges, with differing facilities and specialties While some schools and universities are based in urban areas with a mix of heritage and high rise buildings, others are sprawled across green open spaces. Some of these sites have specialised sporting facilities, while others may be focused on engineering or scientific study, with costly technical equipment. Kindergartens and primary schools have their own unique requirements. Parents expect the highest safety standards, while schools require safety in addition to efficient facilities management. The demographic of these institutions is predominantly young children, who are often unaware of or only just learning about fire safety and personal safety. This creates a huge vulnerability and an added onus on teachers to keep their students safe. Facial recognition at West Academy of Beijing In response to this need, Chubb China upgraded the closed-circuit television (CCTV) system for Western Academy of Beijing (WAB) focusing on elevating video content analytic features, including maximised CCTV monitoring, automatic police calling, and a smart search solution. Complementing this, a facial recognition system capable of finding the exact location of a student on campus within 30 seconds was added, aided by real-time remote gate operation. This integrated and advanced system resulted won the "High Quality Educational Technology Suppliers for School" award for the WAB project at the 2019 BEED Asia Future Oriented Construction of Universities and Schools Seminar. This award recognises outstanding solution design and project execution. Parents expect the highest safety standards, while schools require safety in addition to efficient facilities management Awareness remains important at university As students graduate from kindergarten, primary school, junior and senior school, they become more aware of fire safety, relevant dangers and how to protect themselves. Unfortunately, external dangers remain. There are particularly high stakes for university campus facilities managers The safety of students in a university environment is also critical. It is often the first time young people live away from their family home and have the independence of adulthood. For this reason, there are particularly high stakes for university campus facilities managers. In the eventuality of a fire, students could be at great risk and, beyond the immediacy of physical harm, this can have serious ramifications for the reputation of an educational institution. Integrated solutions Integrated solutions must be nimble and adapted to a range of site types including campus residences, recreational areas, open spaces and lecture theatres. Chubb Sicli recently identified and overcame these challenges through the installation of a full suite of fire safety and security equipment and services at Webster University Geneva. Established in Switzerland in 1978, Webster University Geneva is an accredited American university campus that offers programs in English to students interested in undergraduate or graduate-level education. Located in the Commune of Bellevue, just a few kilometres from Geneva's central station, the campus of Webster University Geneva includes five buildings in a park-style atmosphere. Full fire and security audit Chubb Sicli provided Webster’s fire extinguisher maintenance for over 25 years. This business relationship led to a full fire and security audit that identified the need for updates to the university’s security installation. The initial audit showed several improvements to the university’s security profile were needed.The challenge was to create and provide an effective and interconnected fire and security solution The challenge was to create and provide an effective and interconnected fire and security solution, enhancing the security of the student population and its ever-evolving needs. This included complete fire detection and intruder alarms for all five buildings, upgrades to existing CCTV systems, new video surveillance equipment and an automated fire extinguishing system in the kitchen areas. In addition to this integrated system solution, Webster University required access control for all main entrances, with the requirement that all documentation to be made available in English, because Webster is an American company. Customised solution Chubb Sicli’s quality, capability, and security expertise provided a customised solution for the unique educational establishment. Not only was the solution both tailored and integrated, the approach and planning were based on audit, fire extinguisher and emergency light maintenance, fire detection, intrusion detection, access control, video surveillance and Fire Detection. Through dedicated and integrated fire safety support, Chubb provides students and families peace of mind and security. From the moment a young child enters the education system, Chubb’s diligent and effective surveillance and fire safety systems work to prevent and protect, offering a new kind of ‘end-to-end’ service for education systems around the world.
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 dual purpose,” says Matt Kushner, President of STANLEY Security. STANLEY Security, one of the largest integrators with a global footprint, has positioned itself at the centre of the industry’s transformation by information technology (IT) and the Internet of Things. “Security will become an expanded business partner with corporations,” Kushner comments. In response to the trend, STANLEY is hiring more IT-oriented technicians and salespeople within the IT community and who can “speak at the C-level”, Kushner comments. Sonitrol is the most recognised brand by law enforcement for verified response Data centres, higher education and logistics STANLEY manages very large, multi-national clients. As a consequence, the STANLEY security organisation has some of the best and brightest minds for enterprise-class security. To maintain that level of talent, STANLEY is committed to education. “We bring them into the family and focus on education, such as IT and IoT training. That’s critical in a world where unemployment is less than 3%. Finding good people, growing good people, and retaining good people – we do that exceptionally well at STANLEY,” says Kushner. STANLEY’s strong vertical markets including data centres, higher education, and logistics. They are also strong in multi-location installations (such as banking.) STANLEY has a big footprint throughout North America and Europe. PACOM access control and 3xLOGIC cloud-based solutions In addition to STANLEY’s core integrator business, the company also manages several manufacturing brands such as PACOM access control and 3xLOGIC cloud-based solutions.Mergers and acquisitions have been commonplace in the integrator space Beyond its company-owned integrator locations under the STANLEY brand, the company also owns Sonitrol, the strongest brand in the market for verified response with 65 franchises in North America. Sonitrol is the most recognised brand by law enforcement for verified response. Mergers and acquisitions have been commonplace in the integrator space, and Kushner says that STANLEY is “open and actively looking for properties that fit our commercial growth strategy”. He notes that STANLEY focuses on the commercial side of the market, where there are good margins and continuing growth. They pay less attention to the residential side which is “being heavily disrupted”. Strong partnerships with manufacturers STANLEY has strong partnerships with several manufacturer partners, through which they bring new breakout technologies to market from emerging companies. An example is Evolv Technology, a manufacturer of gun and bomb detection technology. “We see them as a leading provider of the technology, and they are, in my mind, a very disruptive provider,” says Kushner. STANLEY is also collaborating with a company – to be announced – that provides a unique gunshot detection technology, he says. STANLEY is also cooperating with dormakaba to implement Switch Tech, a Bluetooth wireless core that can replace any standard mechanical lock core. Existing locks can be transformed into electromechanical locks in minutes. STANLEY is also developing a tight integration with Lenel’s mobile credentialing system. STANLEY is also cooperating with dormakaba to implement Switch Tech GSX 2019 and ISC West 2020 At the recent GSX 2019 show in Chicago, Kushner says STANLEY heard a lot about cybersecurity, especially customers wanting to make sure they are investing in cyber-hygiene and who are looking to expand into providing cyber protection. “In concert with cyber-hygiene, they are looking for health monitoring or assurance that network devices are operating properly,” he says. “They want to ensure their security platforms are cyber-secure and up to date with the latest software versions.” STANLEY is also a big proponent of cloud offerings, and Kushner hints at a big announcement at the upcoming ISC West show in Las Vegas of additional cloud offerings and/or partnerships. “There will be a variety of new solutions to be introduced, including hosted solutions and applications that benefit both security and that add new value to businesses overall.”
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.”
ZeroEyes, the only AI-based platform focused solely on weapons detection, has been selected by the Kenosha Unified School District (KUSD) of Wisconsin to help improve security on its campuses. ZeroEyes proprietary solution ZeroEyes’ proprietary solution will identify visible guns if present and send alerts to school administrators and security personnel within three to five seconds, helping to stop violent threats before they occur. KUSD is the third-largest school district in Wisconsin, with over 21,000 students and 4,200 employees in 23 elementary schools, five middle schools, five high schools and five charter schools. Integration with IP security cameras ZeroEyes currently integrates with KUSD’s IP security cameras to help detect visible weapons and serve as a proactive measure to prevent any violent threats on campus. When ZeroEyes positively detects a weapon, the platform sends a notification to school administrators, school resource officers and local 911 dispatch, ensuring the school can enact security protocols and give first responders real-time information to help prevent active shooting tragedies and save lives. Enhancing staff and students’ security “It’s a grim reality that active shootings happen in schools across the country, and we’ve needed to understand and implement the solutions that can keep our students, staff and visitors safe,” said Kevin Christoun, Maintenance, Environmental and Safety Manager at KUSD. Kevin adds, “At KUSD, we have a multi-layered security approach that includes the most effective and innovative technologies and resources, and ZeroEyes’ platform clearly supports our strategy.” Weapons detection solution ZeroEyes proprietary and comprehensive datasets focus exclusively on weapons detection Founded by a group of former Navy SEALs and military veterans, ZeroEyes proprietary and comprehensive datasets focus exclusively on weapons detection, to actively monitor and detect for visible weapons. ZeroEyes also trains and collaborates with customers and local first responders to conduct extensive pilots before its solution is fully implemented. In the future, KUSD plans to roll out additional installations to remaining schools in the district. Effectively countering active shooting incidents “ZeroEyes was founded upon the realisation that a proactive solution was needed to help keep people safe, with real-time information to adequately address violent threats and prevent mass shooting tragedies,” said Dustin Brooks, Vice President of Education at ZeroEyes. Dustin adds, “KUSD focuses on providing a safe and productive learning environment to its students and faculty, and we’re honoured to provide a 24/7 solution that supports their goals.”
Redlands Unified School District, located in San Bernardino Country, California, hosts more than 21,000 students across its 16 elementary schools, four middle schools and four high schools. School security is paramount for the district. It’s taken extra precautions, including a focus on lockdown procedures across its locations and the district office. K-12 school security can be challenging, especially with the uniqueness of Redlands High School. It’s an older facility that was constructed more than 100 years ago. Additionally, students must walk outside to pass from building to building, and there’s a street that cuts through campus. A crosswalk is needed to get from one end to the other. The district needed to take all of this into account when assessing their security plan. Securing every layer The district’s security team took into consideration each physical layer that needed protection The district’s security team took into consideration each physical layer that needed protection at Redlands High School, from the district level to the classroom and many openings in between. Yet, there was a common area that needed addressed. There’s a fence around the campus to protect the property perimeter. And Redlands High School is extending that fence to include the cross walk, which will help funnel guests into a single point of entry, the main office. Schlage AD Series electronic locks This opening, as well as many other perimeter openings that lead into offices, gyms, auditoriums, libraries and hallways in the school feature Schlage AD Series electronic locks that are connected to the district’s access control system. At the classroom layer, each door has mechanical hardware that can be locked from the inside. Redlands School District has started district-wide implementation of a full-feature enterprise access control system through Vanderbilt, which is capable of operating across different schools, campuses and other locations. RedRock Security and Cabling, Inc. (RedRock Technologies) had implemented and continue to support the solution. Electronic access control “When these systems are managed district-wide, schools have the ability to lock down a door at a time, a school at a time or an entire district at a time,” said Jennifer Martin, Director of System Sales at Vanderbilt, adding “It’s all about protecting the students.” With electronic access control on main points of entry and many assembly areas, plus secure mechanical locks on classroom doors, Redlands High School had most of the layers prepared in the event of a lockdown event. However, the school’s cafeteria, Terrier Hall, was a vulnerable space. “Hundreds of students use Terrier Hall,” said James Fotia, Director of Maintenance, Operations and Transportation at Redlands Unified School District, adding “In a lockdown situation, that’s a place where we would secure the kids and keep them safe by clustering them into that area and having it locked down. But it was secured by one AD-400 lock on a pair of double doors. That was incomplete.” Von Duprin RU retrofit option Allegion representatives recommended a new K-12 security solution from Von Duprin To demonstrate how the school could affordably secure big banks of doors without having a reader on each opening, Allegion representatives recommended a new K-12 security solution from Von Duprin. The Von Duprin RU retrofit option is a cost-effective solution for openings with existing exit devices that enables remote locking, or un-dogging, for centralised lock down. This enables staff to initiate an immediate campus-wide lockdown from a secured location instead of putting themselves in harm’s way to manually undog exit-device doors throughout the building. Integrated request to exit (RX), latch bolt (LX) and door position switch (DPS) signals are included to provide real-time remote monitoring and confirmation of the security status of the door. Wireless connectivity to ENGAGE Gateway There’s also a ‘dog on next exit’ feature, which is a scheduled function sent to the device to allow the door to remain unlocked the first time someone depresses the push pad of the exit device to leave that space. The door is secured in the evening, and with ‘dog on next exit’ enabled at a specific time in the morning, staff simply depresses the push pad to unlock the door. This makes unlocking the door simple for scheduled events and daily lock-up easy by reducing the need to distribute keys to staff. Additionally, the RU option connects wirelessly via Bluetooth Low Energy to Allegion’s ENGAGE Gateway which provides real-time, bi-directional communication to the access control software. RU is a modular battery powered kit that can be added on to existing Von Duprin 98/99 and 33A/35A Series devices. Enhanced door security “The Von Duprin RU option fits into special applications that haven’t been addressed in the past,” said Russell Gamble, End User Consultant at Allegion, adding “There are several openings that will benefit from this secure lockdown solution.” At Redlands High School, the Von Duprin solution is installed on five doors that surround the cafeteria area. There are main entry doors where students enter, plug in their lunch numbers and go through the buffet line. From there, they enter the multi-purpose space, where there are four additional doors, which are secured with the RU options. Access control solution with lockdown capabilities There was also interest in implementing the security solution at the district office There was also interest in implementing the security solution at the district office. The school wanted to pilot the solution there to experience the product and its features, especially the lockdown capabilities. And being that the building is so unique, it has a need for enhanced security. “The district office is a converted warehouse, so it was never really meant for meetings and offices,” said Fotia, adding “Having the Von Duprin RU has been a wonderful fit in providing security in a not so ideal building.” Integration with Vanderbilt solution The main building is built U-shaped and the loading dock is in the middle. In the middle there is a courtyard area with four portable offices. The Von Duprin RU is on each portable door. At both locations, the Von Duprin RU options are integrated into the Vanderbilt solution and part of the broader lockdown solution. “The greatest thing about this solution is schools now have a way to electronically add control to doors that used to be manually monitored,” said Jennifer Martin. Remote lockdown and door access control She adds, “With the Von Duprin 99 Series, doors allow for free egress, but they aren’t usually monitored by access-controlled systems. If someone has it dogged so the doors are unlocked or propped open, someone has to manually go around and lock each door.” This solution ensures staff is alerted if a door is propped open and enables the ability to lock down the door remotely, even if it was previously mechanically unlocked. Enhanced lockdown capabilities for peace of mind Redlands Unified School District is pleased with the addition of the Von Duprin RU Redlands Unified School District is pleased with the addition of the Von Duprin RU to its school security plan. Integrating the solution with the Vanderbilt system, along with the Schlage electronic locks on campus has improved lockdown. According to the district’s Coordinator of Operations and Facility Planning, Ken Morse, it’s also improved peace of mind because there are less errors and more control over these areas. In the cafeteria, Terrier Hall, they’re able to secure doors that used to be manually controlled. This eliminates human error and the risk of manually locking doors in an emergency. Fotia said the school also likes the budget-savings aspect since it was able to simply upgrade the hardware it already had in place versus purchasing entirely new equipment. He’s excited to see other areas where the Von Duprin RU might be a fit. “The security measures and the lockdown capabilities are the main reasons we wanted the Von Duprin product,” said Morse, adding “Putting something on a schedule is also a great bonus because of how many common-use facilities we have. We’ve found that scheduling it is relatively easy. The doors are open only when they need to be. We have everything scheduled at the district office so it’s open during our hours, which has been a huge benefit.”
At the Inholland University of Applied Sciences, a rolling project to upgrade access control at all locations has been ongoing for several years. Typical of any large educational setting, the tension between remaining open and accessible on the one hand — and securing people, equipment and data on the other — is a critical factor. More than 500 Aperio wireless door locking devices have now been deployed at 7 separate Inholland campus sites. These battery-powered locks provide tested and trusted protection for the university’s most important areas and rooms, including offices and exam storage spaces. Aperio devices fit all kinds of interior openings, including wooden and glass doors, as well as fire doors. Aperio cylinders, escutcheons, handles and security locks have in-built RFID readers for installer and user convenience. Integration with Nedap AEOS access control system All Inholland’s new Aperio devices are fully and seamlessly integrated with the university’s Nedap AEOS access control system. A single credential allows users to unlock all authorised openings managed by the AEOS system — whether wired or Aperio-protected doors. Because Aperio locking devices are wireless, they were installed and initiated quickly — without disruption to Inholland buildings or their students’ working day. And choosing Aperio saved more than just time. A recent ASSA ABLOY benchmarking study finds installer labour costs are over 80% lower for wireless versus wired locks. The ongoing cost of running battery-operated wireless locks is also much lower than for equivalent wired electronic locks, which require an “always on” connection to mains electricity to maintain secure status. In addition, choosing Aperio gives Inholland the ability to roll out enhancements over time, as needs, budgets and priorities evolved. Aperio devices can be added and integrated gradually, with no need to replace existing systems. Inholland’s investment remains totally future-proofed. Programmable RFID credential Fitting Aperio wireless escutcheons and locks to critical doors ensures university staff, students, visitors and confidential information are safe without impacting site accessibility. Authorised users open relevant secure doors conveniently with a programmable RFID credential. Aperio’s inherent flexibility makes it easy to adjust any space’s level of protection at any time. So, locking status is regularly reconfigured as needs and usage evolves around the multi-site campus and university facilities. Smart building systems Based on their experience to date with Aperio, Inholland are already planning for the future. A new university in Amsterdam will become a smart building and will require access control able to integrate with smart building systems. Aperio is built on an open platform, designed for interoperability, so this is a natural fit. Inholland will enter pilot stage for their new smart building soon. “I am very satisfied with the implementation and operation of the Aperio solution and I have every confidence in ASSA ABLOY as a manufacturer,” concludes Frans Bruggeman, Facility Services Consultant at Inholland.
Verkada, the provider in cloud-managed enterprise building security, announced the release of its environmental sensor product line and its initial product, the SV11. The announcement comes on the heels of Verkada’s recent Series C funding and successful launch of its access control line, further establishing the company as the provider of the operating system for modern, integrated buildings. Monitoring “Our customers are responsible for the systems that keep facilities online, and our mission is to give those administrators the best possible tools to do their jobs,” said Filip Kaliszan, CEO and co-founder of Verkada. “Whether it be monitoring the status of a server room, the temperature of a patient room in a hospital, or the air quality of a school, the SV11 gives facilities and staff unprecedented visibility and control over the sites they’re responsible for keeping safe and secure.” The SV11 is a simple-to-deploy, powerful sensing device that provides enhanced visibility into what is happening in a physical space. The cloud-managed device seamlessly integrates with Verkada’s enterprise video security solution, allowing organisations to review context and quickly associate sensor events with relevant video footage. Real-time insights and proactive alerts The interface delivers real-time insights and makes it easy to respond to proactive alerts or conduct investigations into past incidents. Customers across a range of industries, including healthcare, manufacturing, education, retail, and hospitality, have already deployed the SV11 to monitor: Air quality: Protect one's environment from invisible threats like gas and chemical leaks, or detect illicit activities like vaping and smoking. Temperature and humidity: Monitor changes in temperature and humidity that may damage expensive infrastructure, materials, or food and medical supplies. Motion and occupancy: Detect motion or occupancy in bathrooms, locker rooms, and other private areas where cameras are not appropriate. Noise levels: Detect activity or disturbances without violating privacy. Receive and manage alert notifications remotely “The ability to deploy Verkada's sensor in our network closets has provided us with complete visibility into what’s happening in those rooms,” said Rick Palandro, Security and Facilities Operations Engineer at Fox Rothschild LLP. “With Verkada, I'm now able to receive and manage alert notifications remotely the moment temperature rises above a specific threshold. I can instantly mobilise the team to respond to HVAC issues. We’ve shifted from a reactive approach that often resulted in damaged equipment to a proactive one that ensures our equipment is always operating properly.” Monitoring preventative and predictive maintenance Verkada’s SV11 has empowered us to take a data-driven approach to food manufacturing" “Verkada’s SV11 has empowered us to take a data-driven approach to food manufacturing that helps us stay ahead of the curve on environmental improvements across our plant facility,” said Frank McKinney, COO and Plant Manager of Carolina Ingredients. “By pinpointing where we can set up both preventative and predictive maintenance, we can closely monitor and optimise air quality, efficiency of our HVAC units, and behaviours in the plant, which enables us to more effectively manage the business and deliver quality ingredients and superior blending services that support our customers.” Integration with video monitoring solution "We installed the environmental sensor across campuses in areas like bathrooms that are difficult to properly monitor and are therefore likely places for inappropriate activity such as vaping," said Marty Oliver, Director of Technology at Godley Independent School District. "Paired with Verkada's video monitoring solution, the SV11 provides a new level of visibility into what's happening in those spaces without infringing on students' privacy, giving principals, superintendents, and office administrators a more holistic understanding of student activity in school." Environmental sensor The introduction of the environmental sensor follows accelerated business growth in Q2 2020, highlighted by: Sixty-five percent quarter-over-quarter revenue growth (compared to Q1 2020), including new deployments with Holiday Inn Express and Suites, Rubrik, NextGen America International expansion with new Sales operations in Sydney and Latin America and deployments with Heinemann Australia, Lifeview Residential Care, and Transportes Canales A projection to double headcount by year-end 2020 (compared to year-end 2019) Expansion of its global channel partner program to more than 1,500 resellers The launch of its Access Control solution, which oversold in the first quarter of general availability and surpassed projected sales by more than 400 percent The release of the Bullet Series of hybrid cloud cameras as well as new features as part of a COVID-19 Response Suite, including People Heatmaps, Person of Interest Notifications, and Crowd Notifications Smart buildings The launch of the SV11 is the next step towards Verkada delivering on its vision to power the modern, integrated building. With security cameras at its core, Verkada is expanding its product offering with new applications such as access control and sensors to deliver the infrastructure that runs safer, smarter buildings.
Marian University is a school with a mission. Having transitioned from a liberal arts college to a comprehensive university in 2009, it has become one of the private education institutions in Indiana. And that’s not all: the university has ambitious goals to grow its programs and broaden its mandate even further. Currently, the school has over 500 staff members and more than 3,500 students from across the United States and around the world. And by 2025, it aims to double its number of annual graduates. Located just ten minutes away from downtown Indianapolis, Marian University’s close proximity to a major centre of American business, finance and culture is a major selling point. Managing increased traffic The city is also experiencing an influx of technology companies, making it the fifth-fastest growing municipality in the country for high-tech jobs. However, as in many booming regions, economic success isn’t evenly distributed. While some areas have experienced revitalisation, others have seen social unrest and rising crime rates. As such, while Marian University’s campus has the privilege of sitting near a bustling city, these challenges aren’t far away. That fact — along with the increasing number of staff and students on the premises — motivated the university to upgrade their security systems to help keep both its people and the wider community safe. Marian University’s previous security system wasn’t up to the task of monitoring the premises, staff and students — so how would it manage increased traffic and additional properties as the school met its growth targets? High definition cameras ACC™ software is much more than a centralised source from which to review recorded video The ongoing maintenance and licensing costs were also prohibitive. Administrators were at a loss of what to do until the security integrator they were working with suggested Avigilon. With high definition cameras and built-in analytics that seamlessly integrated with Avigilon Control Centre (ACC) video management software, it offered a comprehensive, intelligent and scalable solution. Additionally, the licensing fee was a one-time cost, saving the school both time and money. As the security team at Marian University found out, ACC™ software is much more than a centralised source from which to review recorded video. Not only can security operators analyse the video by zooming in and rewinding in real-time, but Avigilon Appearance Search™ technology leverages AI technology to help them instantly locate specific individuals and vehicles of interest. Advanced video analytics Furthermore, Unusual Motion Detection (UMD) technology uses advanced video analytics to flag events that may require further investigation and filter them in the recorded video timeline, allowing security operators to find and review these instances faster. All of this was made possible with the installation of intelligent Avigilon cameras and network video recorders (NVR) across the campus. “The organisation is tremendous to work with,” says Ray Stanley, CIO/Vice President of Marian University. “I have never worked with a security company where I've been able to pick up the phone and have someone to help solve issues and make sure we are using the product the right way so that we see good value for our money. This was true not just in the beginning, their support exists right to this day.” Intelligent security system Avigilon coordinates with local third-party integrators to make sure the system is functioning Instead of sending Marian University setup instructions and leaving the security and IT teams to figure it out for themselves, Avigilon coordinates with local third-party integrators to make sure the system is functioning and actively helps operators learn how to utilise it to its full potential. Personnel will come onsite to work with staff and guarantee they know how to get the most from their various video analytics platforms and solutions. The main buildings at Marian University may be surrounded by quiet woodlands and wetlands, but the campus isn’t as isolated as it appears. Being a mere ten minutes away from the middle of Indianapolis, the school’s property borders several roadways, businesses and residential neighbourhoods that all benefit from having an intelligent security system in the vicinity. Keeping the community safe “The great quality video has helped keep the community safe, without a doubt,” says Ray Stanley, CIO/Vice President of Marian University. “In one case, local police were able to identify a suspect involved in an incident at a nearby gas station because of our Avigilon system. Being able to help our surrounding community stay safe is absolutely an added benefit for us.” With its Avigilon solution, the Marian University campus has become an extra set of eyes for law enforcement. UMD and Avigilon Appearance Search technologies mean that criminals who make the mistake of moving across campus have a much higher chance of being detected by the authorities who can then quickly track their route to see where they have been and where they are headed. Potentially-dangerous behaviour It enables security personnel to spot and deter any potentially-dangerous behaviour on a daily basis With its user-friendly interface and high-quality video, the security installation not only helps with police work and prosecution, but it enables security personnel to spot and deter any potentially-dangerous behaviour on a daily basis, creating a safer environment for students and staff. "For example, we were able to see a suspect driving at a high rate of speed across campus, and with Appearance Search, we were able to see where the vehicle went and identify the suspect,” says Chief Richard Robertson, Marian University Police Department. “That helped us to save a lot of trouble and potential injuries.” Protecting local communities In the United States, Indianapolis looms large not only as the crossroads of the country — two-thirds of Americans can drive to the city in ten hours or less — but also as a hub of innovation and investment. However, safety continues to be a top-of-mind issue as crime increases in certain sections of the city. This is why Marian University chose Avigilon: as the school aims to provide a safe space for students and prepare them for the many opportunities Indianapolis has to offer, there’s also a deep-seated obligation to help protect local communities and public spaces. Avigilon allows it to do both — and even better, the solution will be able to scale with the university as it evolves and expands in the years ahead.
Schools and heritage sites present their own unique difficulties for security and access control. It becomes a challenge when the same is to be applied to a school that is also a heritage site of exceptional value. This was the challenge facing security administrators at the Colegio Diocesano Santo Domingo in Orihuela, Spain. The Colegio Diocesano is more than just a school. Its historic buildings date to the 1500s, a heritage site as well as a place of learning - with a museum that requires the protection of the same access system. Hence, the brief for a new access system required minimal disruption on two fronts. The college buildings are a Resource of Cultural Interest and on Spain’s heritage registry: they must not be damaged. School chiefs also required little disturbance of everyday school learning. Wireless access control was the obvious answer. A wireless access solution to a 16th-century problem Powerful management option enables real-time security control to limit free access to and around the site SMARTair® wireless access control devices now control access through 300 doors around the school. A mix of battery-powered escutcheons and weather-proof escutcheons, knob cylinders and wired wall readers (including for lifts) are connected to SMARTair’s intuitive software by a network of 38 wireless communication hubs. The school chose SMARTair Wireless Online management for its new keyless access system. This powerful management option enables real-time security control to limit free access to and around the site, even if the school data network is down. Automated emails inform security staff of any incidents, keeping students, staff, equipment, and precious heritage safe. “The main benefit is the ease of real-time key management — from any place and at any time — via the wireless online management system,” says IT Manager, Francisco Fernández Soriano. “This increases security for children and for staff because no unauthorised people can enter the school.” SMARTair locks and readers SMARTair TS1000 software makes it easy to issue and cancel access credentials for temporary visitors such as parents SMARTair locks and readers provide a streamlined way to manage access. Student and staff carry credentials programmed to allow access to specific authorised areas. SMARTair TS1000 software makes it easy to issue and cancel access credentials for temporary visitors such as parents. “In addition to the main entrances and classrooms, access to private spaces such as lifts, offices, staff rooms, the church, the museum, the library and the IT room is constantly monitored,” he adds. “Thanks to our SMARTair devices installed at more than 300 doors, the security team can find out who has accessed which space and when, at any time.” Installation and integration The system was installed without a hitch and also without any disruption to classes" The installation of the school’s new SMARTair system demanded minimal work. Some school doors date to the 16th century, so major alterations to door hardware were not possible. “The system was installed without a hitch and also without any disruption to classes,” confirms Fernández Soriano. Because SMARTair is a modular system, scalability is built in. They can extend or fine-tune their access system when they choose. Indeed, SMARTair’s “Phase II” is already under discussion. SMARTair software also easily slotted into the school’s existing management workflows. The Colegio Diocesano has used iinventi education management software for the past five years. Integration with SMARTair software was simple: access control, the library and canteen are managed from an integrated system. “SMARTair gives the school’s security team the answers they need,” concludes school director, Reverend José María Fernández-Corredor. To learn how easily SMARTair® wireless access control could secure your premises, download a free solution guide at https://campaigns.assaabloyopeningsolutions.eu/smartair
Round table discussion
Video storage has been a challenge since the days of VCRs and videotape. Storing images is a central need for any video systems, especially one that is focused on the forensic and investigative aspects of video. Today, digital video is stored on hard drives and even in the cloud. Increasingly, video is considered “data” that drives a variety of video analytics and even artificial intelligence (AI) applications. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the new trends and opportunities in video storage?
School shootings are a high-profile reminder of the need for the highest levels of security at our schools and education facilities. Increasingly, a remedy to boost the security at schools is to use more technology. However, no technology is a panacea, and ongoing violence and other threats at our schools suggest some level of failure. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How have security solutions failed our schools and what is the solution?
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?