Video cameras are everywhere, and hundreds more are installed every day. Our society appears to be reaching a point of perpetual surveillance. It certainly feels as if we are always being watched even though it is not yet the case. But as cameras are becoming more common than ever, we are also entering a new era of privacy concerns and sensitivities, as evidenced by GDPR and other such initiatives. We presented this quandary to this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Surveillance cameras can...
Oncam, the experts of 360-degree video capture and business intelligence technology, announced it will showcase its latest technology innovations, including the Evolution 180 camera range and its 360-degree camera line, during IFSEC International, June 19-21, at ExCeL London. Oncam will join valued partner Milestone Systems at Stand C340 to demonstrate its experience and heritage within the security video and intelligence solutions market throughout the show. The new Evolution 180 Outdoor camer...
Leaders in the electronic security and life safety industry will roll up their sleeves and contribute some creativity to an interactive art project on the ESX expo floor June 20-21 in Nashville, TN. #PassionateSecurity in Schools initiative As part of ESX’s ‘#PassionateSecurity in Schools’ initiative, which also includes a heartfelt presentation during the show’s Closing Keynote Luncheon on June 22, attendees will be painting a 3-part mural that ESX will then donate to...
Over the course of the past few months, I have discussed a myriad of topics, from Big Data, the Internet of Things and emerging video surveillance-use cases, to analytics, storage complexities and IT technologies like virtualisation and hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI). All of these trends have a significant effect on the security market, and in April they were highlighted in spades at ISC West. It’s great to talk about these trends but it’s far better to see how they are being l...
Oncam, global provider of 360-degree video capture and business intelligence technology, has announced the availability of the Evolution 180 outdoor model to its 180-degree camera portfolio, adding to the indoor version introduced earlier this year. The technology builds upon the experience and heritage of the company's 360-degree video and intelligence solutions to meet the needs of customers in a variety of markets that require an outdoor-ready wall-mounted camera with Panoramic+ views from a...
Axis Communications, provider of network video solutions, has announced new products and solutions to be introduced at ISC West. The main areas of development include, small business, seamless panoramic surveillance, and audio. “We are excited to attend ISC West and to showcase our products and solutions there,” said Fredrik Nilsson, VP, Americas, Axis Communications, Inc. “We encourage attendees to come to our booth to experience our newest innovations for a smarter, safer wo...
Panasonic System Solutions Company of North America will showcase its latest innovations and a diversified technology portfolio of end-to-end security and evidence management solutions at ISC West 2018 Booth 10037, April 11-13, at the Sands Expo & Convention Center in Las Vegas. Expanding upon the broad collection of fixed, mobile and body-worn hardware and software surveillance platforms unveiled late last year, Panasonic will exhibit a collection of highly-integrated products and services to easily connect and manage the fast-changing security industry. New products include FacePRO facial recognition software with deep learning technology; the new Video Insight VI 7.2 VMS; the i-PRO EXTREME 33MP (4x4K) Multi-Sensor camera; the i-PRO EXTREME 9 Megapixel 360 degree dome camera series; and the i-PRO EXTREME 5 Megapixel Fixed camera series. ISC West serves as an important platform to show the significant investment Panasonic has made in security technology" Unified Security Management Solutions “ISC West serves as an important platform to show the significant investment Panasonic has made in security technology to provide integrated solutions that are easy to use across numerous key vertical markets including education, public safety, and transportation,” said M. Faisal Pandit, SVP and Chief Digital Officer, Panasonic System Solutions Company of North America. “We are committed to delivering comprehensive, turnkey, video surveillance hardware and software solutions that work together to keep cities, schools, and our communities safe.” This year the new Unified Security Management Solutions exhibit demonstrates Panasonic’s VI 7 VMS Solution, MonitorCast Access Control, Transportation Solution and Advidia Cameras. The Unified Public Safety area demos body-worn-cameras, UEMS (Unified Evidence Management System) and the new FacePRO high-precision facial recognition software with deep learning technology. The new I-PRO Extreme Products display showcases FacePRO facial recognition software and its integration with the new i-PRO EXTREME line of cameras (Multi-Sensor, 9 Megapixel 360, and 5 Megapixel camera series), as well as the cameras themselves, and a new NVR. The Strategic Partner Zone includes v5 systems a portable outdoor security solution, Optex an intrusion detection security demo and integration between Genetec / FacePRO. FacePRO high-precision facial recognition software can identify faces that are difficult to recognise with conventional technologies Showcase details Details on the Panasonic technology and solutions to be showcased in ISC West Booth 10037 include: New FacePRO Facial Recognition – Featuring a “deep learning” core engine that boasts the world’s highest face recognition performance, FacePRO high-precision facial recognition software can identify faces that are difficult to recognise with conventional technologies, including faces at an angle of up to 45 degrees to the left or right or 30 degrees up or down, and those partially hidden by sunglasses. FacePRO even works better with the feature "iA (intelligent Auto) mode" that camera automatically adjusts settings to shoot optimal images best suited for facial recognition. When used with Panasonic's i-PRO EXTREME series network cameras installed with “Best Shot feature,” only the “best shots” will be sent to the server for face recognition. Using FacePRO with cameras equipped with the iA function enables image analysis to be performed on the camera instead of the server. As a result, only the best images are sent, reducing server and network load and total system cost. Video Insight VI 7.2 Video Management Software – An integral component of any school or city safety solution is video surveillance management. Video Insight VI 7.2 is the latest generation of VI’s open-platform VMS and is faster and is reimagined from the ground up to be more intuitive, easy, and powerful, while offering new premium functionality for key vertical markets: Panasonic Body-Worn Camera Support – Ability to connect to Panasonic body-worn cameras and can transfer video and audio to VI MonitorPlus. The new i-Pro EXTREME Multi-Sensor cameras deliver extreme image quality for evidence capturing Vehicle Incident Detection (VID) – Capture and highlight video of stopped and wrong-way vehicles. Transportation Functionality – Transfer and review video and audio from Panasonic body-worn cameras. LPR License Plate Recognition (LPR) Plug-in – Integrate with LPR cameras to capture, monitor, and review video associated with recognised license plates. FacePRO Integration Plug-in – Detect registered faces and retrieve recorded snapshots and associated video. Panasonic NVR Integration – Ability to connect Panasonic NVRs and cameras for live and recorded video. New i-Pro EXTREME H.265 Multi-Sensor Camera – WV-X8570N, WV-S8530NThe new i-Pro EXTREME Multi-Sensor cameras deliver extreme image quality – 4x4K (33 MP), 3840x2160, 15 FPS – for evidence capturing under the most challenging of conditions which makes it perfect for use in safe city and traffic applications. i-Pro EXTREME Multi-Sensor cameras have four repositionable lenses, 4K image sensors, offer sharp and clear images of fast moving vehicles with iA (intelligent Auto) and ClearSight Coating. Durable, with outstanding low light performance, the i-ProEXTREME Multi-Sensor is an excellent choice for nighttime applications. H.265 compression with new smart coding, self-learning ROI (Region of Interest), and the highest in data security make the i-Pro EXTREME Multi-Sensor a technologically superior line of video surveillance cameras. The i-Pro EXTREME 9 MP 360 video surveillance cameras are perfect for transportation, retail, logistics, campus, city and healthcare applications New i-Pro EXTREME H.265 9 MP 360 Degree Camera – WV-X4571LM, WV-X4571L, WV-X4171, WV-X4170The i-Pro EXTREME 9 MP 360 line of video surveillance cameras is perfect for transportation, retail, logistics, campus, city and healthcare applications. With a clearer – and less distorted – image of faces and objects near the edge of the fisheye, the camera provides 9 megapixel fisheye images up to 30 FPS and instantly responds to sudden light changes. It also has Auto Shutter speed control for fast moving objects, Super Dynamic 108dB for backlit situations and shadows, and built-in IR LED for clarity in zero lux conditions (*). H.265 compression with new smart coding, self-learning ROI (Region of Interest), and the highest in data security encryption make the i-Pro EXTREME 9 MP 360 camera a technologically superior line of video surveillance cameras. (*IR LED is outdoor models only) New i-Pro EXTREME H.265 5 MP Fixed Camera – WV-S2550L, WV-S2250L, WV-S1550LPerfect for safe cities and campuses, as well as for transportation, retail and finance implementations, the new i-Pro EXTREME 5 MP fixed camera line offers Auto Shutter speed control for moving vehicles, sharp images of a person walking in daylight or at night, outstanding low light performance, and Super Dynamic 120dB for backlit situations including headlights or shadows on streets. With 5 megapixel images up to 30 FPS, efficient H.265 compression provides longer recording and less storage compared to any other H.264 techniques. New self-learning ROI (Region of Interest) detects movement within an image and compresses areas with little motion to reduce transmitted data while maintaining the quality of the image. Full end-to-end system encryption with i-PRO EXTREME Recorder and devices provide protection from IP snooping, IP spoofing, and data alteration.
Sony’s latest SNC-HMX70 security camera maintains an all-round 360-degree hemispheric view with no blind spots – ensuring full situational awareness in a wide range of indoor surveillance applications. The camera's fixed lens and high-resolution 12-megapixel CMOS sensor stream crisply detailed, high-resolution video at a smooth 30 fps. This assures that people and objects are seen clearly, even in challenging lighting conditions. Harshly backlit windows, lobbies and entrances are no problem for the SNC-HMX70. Intelligent Auto Exposure analyses front and backlighting in the scene, fine-tuning exposure for perfect footage in any lighting conditions. The camera’s wide 92dB dynamic range captures crucial image detail, even in high-contrast scenes with extremes of light and shade. Its slim, low-profile styling makes the SNC-HMX70 ideal for discreet round-the-clock monitoring in environments ranging from retail stores, banks, casinos and commercial buildings to schools and offices. Mounting is quick and easy with supplied twist/click mounting ring, while Power-over-Ethernet connection simplifies cabling.Even greater monitoring flexibility is provided by a choice of Panoramic, Quad and Corridor viewing modes 24/7 situational awareness Unlike conventional PTZ (Pan, Tilt, Zoom) cameras, the SNC-HMX70 maintains total situational awareness of the entire coverage area. This means that a full-resolution 360-degree image can always be recorded, even if only a portion of the scene is being scrutinised in close-up. To provide an undistorted rectangular view, this hemispheric image can be ‘de-warped’ – using Video Management System software or the camera’s own edge de-warping function that provides three simultaneous views. In addition to full image circle and de-warped views, remote E-PTZ (Electronic Pan, Tilt and Zoom) allows high-resolution monitoring of specific Regions of Interest (ROI). Even greater monitoring flexibility is provided by a choice of Panoramic, Quad and Corridor viewing modes. Smart coding and video analytics Smart Coding intelligently distinguishes between noise and crucial picture information, as well as between moving and static parts of the scene. This reduces video bitrate by up to 50 percent, cutting network data demands without compromising picture quality. Through Sony’s technology partnership with Bosch, the new SNC-HMX70 uses powerful on-board video analytics that can accurately track movement through the camera’s entire coverage area. This makes the SNC-HMX70 ideal for applications such as people counting or detection of suspicious activity. In addition, metadata is streamed from the camera to client software for further use in business analysis or search. With the SNC-HMX70, security users can be confident that no detail gets missed when it really matters" Hemispheric monitoring “The new SNC-HMX70 is compact, discreet and unobtrusive – but it’s remarkably powerful for its size,” notes Yoshikazu Hirano, General Manager of the B2B Segment Business Division at Sony Imaging Products & Solutions Inc. “Hemispheric monitoring offers a really big advantage over conventional PTZ cameras that sacrifice wide-area situational awareness when they’re zoomed in to see unusual activity in close-up. With the SNC-HMX70, security users can be confident that no detail gets missed when it really matters.”
CNL Software, global pure play Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) software provider, will be showcasing its latest IP Security Center PSIM solution at the Connected Security Expo at ISC West in Las Vegas April 11-13, 2018. CNL Software will demonstrate how its PSIM technology helps law enforcement, government agencies and the military, owners and operators of public and private critical infrastructure, large corporations and school districts, colleges and universities, and transportation facilities and networks integrate, automate, and connect security operations and realise the full potential of security system investments. Connected Security Expo The Connected Security Expo targets the convergence of the physical and digital domains and increased demand for more holistic solutions that reduce the clutter that often impedes situational awareness, promote quicker and more consistent incident assessment and response times, automate business rules to ensure compliance with policies, and collect and report insightful data in support of enterprise optimisation and decision making.Following a string of tragic incidents at our nation’s schools and colleges and universities, PSIM has become an essential technology Physical Security Information Management “Following a string of tragic incidents at our nation’s schools and colleges and universities, PSIM has become an essential technology bridge between educational facilities and the first responder community, helping deliver critical information, when and where needed, so that better informed decisions can be made as rapidly as possible”, says Mike Mostow, Americas General Manager, CNL Software. “PSIM delivers the collaborative element required to deliver real-time situational awareness to first responders - a crucial aspect of campus security initiatives being driven at the state, local, and federal government levels.” Mostow concludes, “Critical data, at the right time, in the right place, in the right way, to the right person, can simply save lives.” “We are working with some of the world’s most innovative technology providers to create software-based solutions that drastically improve the effectiveness of control room operations”, added Adlan Hussain, VP Marketing. “We are also now working to empower multi-agency operations, including public and private collaborations; enabling law enforcement, school districts, and transportation facilities and networks to not only have real-time situation awareness but to also use data analysis to effectively preempt and prevent crime.”
Vicon Industries, a designer and manufacturer of video surveillance and access control software, hardware and components, will showcase at ISC West 2018, Booth 10077, many additions and enhancements to its suite of end-to-end video surveillance offerings. Through a partnership with the global provider of video analytics solutions, Agent Vi, Vicon will preview new video analytics capabilities within its Valerus VMS platform for real-time monitoring and video search. In addition, visitors will be among the first to see the company’s expanded line of H.265 cameras and newly released versions of its Valerus VMS software and VAX Access Control software and hardware. These enhanced and expanded offerings span every category of Vicon product and reflect the company’s renewed commitment to providing cutting-edge solutions that have been engineered to simplify the entire user experience. Vicon product offerings Video Analytics: Vicon now offers a range of video analytics tools that can immediately detect and extract events and valuable data from surveillance footage. H.265 Cameras: Vicon’s extensive line of ONVIF indoor and outdoor cameras, for every application, now includes even more H.265 models that can reduce demands for storage and bandwidth by 50%. Valerus 18: The latest update to Vicon’s popular VMS software provides enhancements to its user interface, new data backup and security options and support for H.265 cameras. Valerus/ViconNet Gateway: A new module for use with Valerus 18 provides a migration path for users of Vicon’s legacy ViconNet platform to benefit from all of Valerus’ features. VAX Access Control: Updated software provides an enhanced monitoring interface and more flexibility in customizing automated functions. Expanded hardware includes Panel Room Style Master Controllers. “In addition to showcasing our many new products and product enhancements at ISC West, Vicon will be highlighting the many successful, high-profile installations that are employing our new generation of end-to-end Valerus VMS and VAX Access Control solutions that deliver unprecedented ease-of-use and performance flexibility. Visitors will learn how our unique, thin-client, true-open-standards approach to physical security is supporting customers in a wide range of verticals, including city-wide surveillance, government institutions, real estate developments, schools and healthcare,” said Bret McGowan, Senior V.P. of Sales and Marketing.
Dahua Technology, a solution provider in the global video surveillance industry, announces the release of DSS Pro - its Windows-based VMS (Video Management System) product. Utilising an advanced modular design, DSS Pro is a powerful central management system featuring high flexibility, advanced scalability, and superior reliability. DSS Pro is a Security VMS Software developed by Dahua using Client Server(C/S) architecture. It enables the flexible deployment of multiple modules to meet customer needs. Product features Easy Access: DSS Control Client, DSS Web Client, and DSS Mobile form the suite of DSS clients, enabling users to enjoy instant, around-the-clock access to video surveillance, and giving them the choice of a viewing interface that best suits their needs. DSS Control Client provides easy and powerful daily operation and surveillance task handling. GPU decoding and multi-screen support allows the simultaneous display of multiple types of content. DSS Web Client offers convenient DSS access from any Internet-enabled PC browser. DSS Mobile enables users to view feeds from up to 4 cameras simultaneously. It also supports remote playback of recorded footage from selected cameras and control of PTZ cameras. Embrace Openness: Aside from its support for the full range of Dahua products, DSS Pro is designed for 3rd party device integration through standard ONVIF. The DSS SDK for 3rd party VSS integration supports Windows, IOS, and Android. Easy Expansion: DSS Pro supports easy performance upgrades via distributed hardware extensions, easy functionality upgrades via add-ons, and easy capacity expansion via license subscription. DSS Pro also integrates an alarm system, POS, Face Recognition, and ITC for advanced security applications. High Reliability: DSS Pro supports hot standby which ensures system reliability for critical applications. When abnormal behavior is detected, the detection service will automatically restart the server to ensure service stability. Quality Service: To optimise user experience, Dahua offers quality aftersales services including Dahua Software Upgrade Program (SUP) to provide users with access to the latest Dahua software, Dahua Software Support Plan (SSP) which offers free post technical support, and Custom Development that ensures customised solutions are supervised by Dahua professionals to guarantee quality and performance. Dahua DSS Pro is an ideal choice for those who desire an easy-to-use, customisable, and centralised video management solution Application Scenarios: Beyond its basic application as a CCTV management system, DSS Pro can be used in many vertical industries such as retail, banking, transportation, and Safe City with the use of add-ons. Add-ons are separate software components installed on top of existing DSS video surveillance systems, providing users with extra powerful functionalities. Business Intelligence: In addition to its powerful surveillance capabilities, DSS also provides advanced business analysis functionality. Intelligent analysis features help department stores, outlets, and other businesses improve customer satisfaction, provide a secure shopping environment, and better plan store layout &consumer routes to grow business. LPR: The LPR module features automatic number of plate recognition (ANPR), vehicle image capture, vehicle list management, and more. It has a wide range of applications in the fields of parking and traffic management. Face Recognition: Face Recognition is beneficial for various applications such as monitoring the entrances and exits to railway stations, metro stations, airport terminals, commercial buildings, seaports, schools, factories, and offices. Centralised video management solution Dahua DSS Pro is an ideal choice for those who desire an easy-to-use, customisable, and centralised video management solution with high quality aftersales services. The release of DSS Pro is well in line with Dahua’s value proposition of providing innovation, quality, and service. With a mission of “Enabling a Safer Society and Smarter Living”, Dahua will continue to focus on its value propositions to serve customers and end users around the world.
After a lot of studying and getting ready for what seems like an endless stream of exams, teachers and students alike will enjoy having some much-needed time off — whether it’s just for a weekend, a break during the school year or the long summer holidays. Schools that are left empty for a sustained amount of time obviously increases the risk of arson attacks, thefts and vandalism. Staff members at an establishment should therefore work through this checklist before they leave the classroom on the last day of term — as well as throughout the new school year heading into weekends: Checks around the school’s perimeter Before looking at the school itself, there are a few aspects that should be checked around the perimeter of the education establishment. Report any large or overgrown trees or shrubbery both inside the school grounds and around the perimeter. These can make access to the grounds easier, as well as lead to unnecessary blind spots of CCTV coverage. Ensure all locks have also been checked to make sure they are still fit for purpose, as well as that the access control features on gates are functioning properly so that trespassers cannot gain easy access to a school’s grounds. It is wise to have a look that all of the fencing around a school is fully intact too, with no damage or footholds that allow for simple access into the grounds. Security measures to be checked It is important to review a school’s maintenance programmes to ensure everything is in working order before leaving an establishment empty. This will ensure that fire alarms, intruder alarms and sprinkler systems are all operating properly. Cloud CCTV means that a space can be monitored without the requirement of being on site at all times Are there any areas around the school which are in need of additional alarms or security? Look out for areas that do not have adequate surveillance currently but house many pieces of expensive equipment and technology. Cloud CCTV should also be considered when enhancing security, as it means that a space can be monitored without the requirement of being on site at all times. If set up in a school, make sure that security shutters and grills are operating correctly. Damage to the fittings or bulbs of any external lights should be reported as soon as the issue is seen. So that they cannot be used as an accessory to gain access to a school, make sure that bins and skips are also stored within a secure part of the grounds and at least eight metres away from any building. Checks inside the classroom Before leaving a classroom at the beginning of a weekend or a school break, check to make sure that all windows have been closed and locked, and that all electronics have been switched off at the mains. Ensure all valuable equipment has been kept out of view, by locking it away in a secure place. Throughout the term, any breakage or deterioration to doors, windows, roofs, wall cladding, ceiling tiles, alarms and locks need to be reported upon being discovered. That way, there should be enough time to get them repaired before the weekend or holidays begin.
With increased security a priority for school districts across the country, administrators are taking a close look at their technology to ensure it can deliver in an emergency. Concerns over active shooters and other violent scenarios have districts paying attention and putting heightened security measures in place. Christopher Lordi, Director of Administrative Services at Delaware Valley School District in rural, northeast Pennsylvania, knew it was time to upgrade his district’s surveillance technology, so he turned to the integration expertise of Guyette Communications to get the job done. Analogue DVR system The outdoor PTZ cameras that panned back and forth were causing them to miss a lot of activity The DVR system that covered Delaware Valley’s seven schools and nine buildings was state-of-the-art when it was installed a decade ago, but it was no longer meeting the district’s needs. Administrators complained that is was difficult to view and manage video from all of the cameras as a unified system. The analogue video made it hard to identify faces and see other important details. And the outdoor PTZ cameras that panned back and forth were causing them to miss a lot of activity. “We had a lot of blind spots,” says Chris. Guyette Communications, of Plymouth, PA, has worked with the district for over a decade supporting its technology needs, so Chris looked to them for guidance. Scott Surochak and Rick Scalzo, both of Guyette, recommended a new-to-market VMS, Vicon’s Valerus, that they felt would provide all the features and performance the district sought in a very cost-effective manner. They also recommended that the district abandon their analogue cameras and standardise district-wide on higher performance, megapixel IP models. Valerus VMS The significant expense of replacing not just the VMS system, but hundreds of cameras district-wide, required buy-in from the school board. Rick and Scott, along with Vicon’s regional sales manager, Doug Stadler, provided an in-depth demonstration of the capabilities of Vicon’s new Valerus VMS, along with its line of IQeye Alliance cameras, to the school board. The new system would allow them to clearly identify the faces of visitors, read license plates within the school parking lots, eliminate current blind spots throughout the campuses, and easily search video to quickly find evidence of crime or vandalism. Convinced of the long-term value of the investment, the school board gave a green light to proceed. Vicon Fixed and Cruiser cameras Approximately 400 cameras were installed throughout the district’s nine buildings, almost all of which are Vicon 3MP IQeye Alliance fixed domes Installation began in March 2017 and continued throughout the summer. Approximately 400 cameras were installed throughout the district’s nine buildings, almost all of which are Vicon 3MP IQeye Alliance fixed domes. These provide coverage of all entrances to buildings, busy hallways, and spaces like lunchrooms, auditoriums, playgrounds, parking lots and athletic fields. In addition, Vicon Cruiser domes with 30X optical zoom were installed in each parking lot to capture license plates. To support so many high-resolution cameras transmitting at full frame rates, Guyette installed a dedicated security network capable of handling the bandwidth. All cameras are hard wired with new CAT-6 cabling, which feeds back to CISCO switches and a fiber backbone that runs through each building. Installing security network To minimise bandwidth transmission between buildings, Guyette recommended that each school locally record video from its respective cameras. The five lower schools have each been equipped with a single Valerus server that both runs VMS application software and performs as an NVR. The middle school and high school, which share a building, have an application server plus four NVRs to support the higher number of cameras. Because the Valerus VMS software makes exclusive use of a thin-client, there was no need to install software on any workstations. Complete user and administrative functionality is available through a standard web browser interface. Rick says that “Installation went very smoothly. The system works well and it’s easy to navigate and program. I’m used to systems where we have to do everything manually, but with Valerus, it does a lot of things for you. For example, you can copy programming to multiple cameras. Setting up one camera and then copying it to 50 others is a huge time saver.” “The system is also really easy to update,” he says. “Two new Valerus versions were released during the months we were doing the installation, and we just had to download it once each time to an application server, and then it was automatically pushed out to all the other servers on the network.” Efficient crime detection Two new Valerus versions were released during the months we were doing the installation, and we just had to download it once each time to an application server" There isn’t a lot of criminal activity in the Delaware Valley School District, thanks to outreach programs that create a collaborative relationship between the school police force, administrators, students and parents. However, sometimes issues do occur, and Valerus has already helped the district solve a theft. Chris describes an incident that occurred while the system was still being installed in the spring of 2017. “There was a theft from one of the administrative offices. The employee thought the office had been locked, but our surveillance video was able to show that it was not and displayed the comings and goings of everyone who entered the office during the time in question. The video quality was so clear that the thief’s face could be identified. The footage was turned over to the local police who were able to apprehend the thief and recover the stolen property. With our old VMS system, the video wouldn’t have provided enough detail for us to identify the culprit.” High-end video surveillance Chris says he’d love to say that Valerus’ “museum search” made it possible to find the incriminating video in minutes. However, because the system was just getting installed, not all features were operational yet and his police force had to manually look through hours of video. “The officers are really looking forward to being able to use the search function in the future, now that we’re all up and running. They love how you can draw a box over an area of the video where you know something has happened, and Valerus will do all the work for you,” he says. In speaking about response to crimes and emergencies, Rick adds that because Valerus uses a thin client, the school district has the luxury of easily providing outside law enforcement with access to their system. If they ever needed help from local or state police, like in an active shooter situation, administrators can provide them with a link to the district’s network so that they can better coordinate a response. This would have been impossible with their old system. Ensuring Valerus system’s functionality The VMS thin-client interface allows the officers to view video from anywhere, including on their phones or tablets Unusual for a district of its size, Delaware Valley has its own, full-time, six-person police force. Among other responsibilities, this force is tasked with monitoring the new Valerus system. Each officer has been equipped with his or her own workstation from which they can monitor the cameras physically located at their assigned schools. Administrators at each building also have access to view local cameras. In addition, a centrally located, district-wide monitoring station has been set up to make it easy for officers and school officials to keep an eye on the district as a whole. Rick Scalzo explains that while the VMS thin-client interface allows the officers to view video from anywhere, including on their phones or tablets, his team recommended the purchase of high-performance, manufacturer-certified PC workstations for each officer’s monitoring station. This was to ensure that these computers would have the necessary processing power to display large numbers of high-resolution camera feeds simultaneously. These workstations are hard wired to the network to provide the fastest and most reliable connectivity to the application server. Chris Lordi says that the district has also provided all officers with iPhone 6s, which they use regularly to monitor what’s happening at their buildings. License plate recognition and PTZ cameras One of the capabilities that the district required of the new system is the ability to read license plates of vehicles entering or exiting school grounds. Officers are able to take control of the PTZ cameras in each parking lot and zoom in on the plates of any vehicles of interest. This can even be done via the iPhone interface. Chris explains that it has not been necessary to integrate Valerus with any special license plate recognition (LPR) software because his team of police officers has immediate access to databases where they can look up plates as needed. However, this integration is currently available for Valerus customers and can help automate the process for those who need it. Intruder detection They want top-notch safety, and Valerus delivers that" Chris says that “Our school board takes safety and security very seriously, so for them, this significant investment was justified as soon as we showed them what it can do. They want top-notch safety, and Valerus delivers that. Buy-in from teachers, and the union, who have expressed reservations over the placement of many new cameras that didn’t previously exist, has required additional communication and education. Both Chris and Rick have made it very clear that the upgraded system is not for the purpose of intimidating or keeping closer watch on employees as they perform their daily jobs. Our main concern is thwarting security threats and keeping everybody safe. The additional cameras and new software might help us break up a fight or address bullying issues, but it’s also important for much more serious situations, like dealing with an active shooter or act of terrorism. Now we can use cameras to follow an intruder throughout our buildings, and that can help us keep everyone safe while we apprehend him.” Chris says that “When we put it like that, everyone gets on board.” Counter Terror Chris is extremely appreciative of the support Guyette Communications has provided throughout this project, including individually training each school principal as their building was completed. “I can’t stress how well Guyette has delivered for us. They’re flexible, reliable and compassionate, and they’ve been a true partner at every step of the way. I’d recommend Guyette to anybody.” With school back in session, and the district’s police force busy implementing its many safety programs, Chris looks forward to another school year without any major security incidents. However, with a new Valerus system and high-resolution cameras in place, he knows he now has not only the right people but the right technology to handle any crisis.
Founded in 1871, Fulton County School System is the fourth largest school district in Georgia, United States. It consists of 101 schools and administrative support buildings, including 67 elementary schools, 19 middle schools, 17 high schools and eight charter organisations. Fulton’s mission is to provide a safe and secure environment for its more than 96,000 students and more than 12,000 full-time employees. To help enhance safety Search Technology at more than 100 schools, Fulton has installed a full Avigilon surveillance solution that includes Avigilon cameras with self-learning video analytics, Avigilon network video recorders, and Avigilon Control Center (ACC) video management software with Avigilon Appearance Search technology. Fulton is also deploying Avigilon Access Control Manager to secure physical access points, providing an integrated security solution for the district. Fulton sought to replace analogue cameras with an end-to-end high definition surveillance system camera system in order to maximise protection Simplifying recording and capturing of footage Fulton sought to replace analogue cameras with an end-to-end high definition surveillance system camera system in order to maximise protection, enable proactive event response, and facilitate the recording, capturing and sharing of clear footage with its school board, police and the concerned public. Securing more than 100 buildings is no easy feat, but it’s of utmost importance to the Department of Safety and Security at Fulton, which also includes the School Police and Student Health Services and Emergency. Upgrading video surveillance system With recent data showing above average student incident rates and student disciplinary concerns at some schools, upgrades to the surveillance system were needed to allow better local and remote monitoring in important areas. “One of the biggest security challenges we face is our ability to reliably monitor important areas throughout our schools, especially during an emergency. With Avigilon, we not only benefit from exceptional image quality, but their advanced video analytics, like Avigilon Appearance Search technology, save us valuable time and effort, ultimately making our schools a safer place.” - Paul Hildreth, Emergency Operations, Safety and Security, Fulton County School System. Avigilon high-definition cameras with self-learning video analytics and access control solutions have been installed in 101 schools Appearance Search Technology Avigilon high-definition cameras with self-learning video analytics and access control solutions have been installed in 101 schools. ACC 6 video management software with Avigilon Appearance Search technology is a particularly exciting new development for the district. “We chose Avigilon because of the capabilities it offers in its advanced video analytics search technologies, including Avigilon Appearance Search,” said Paul Hildreth, Emergency Operations, Safety and Security for Fulton. “Their analytics are easy to set up and use, and can save us valuable time and effort, ultimately making our schools a safer place for generations to come.” Video data analysis Avigilon Appearance Search video analytics technology uses a sophisticated deep learning artificial intelligence search engine to sort through hours of footage with ease. This technology allows Fulton’s operators to click on a button and search for all instances of a person or vehicle across all cameras on a site, quickly and efficiently. This can save Fulton time and effort during critical investigations as Avigilon Appearance Search technology intelligently analyses video data, helping to track a person’s or vehicle’s route and identify previous and last-known locations. Avigilon self-learning video analytics enable proactive, real-time event response. Built from the ground up to manage high-definition video, Avigilon offers self-learning analytics on camera resolutions of up to 5K (16 MP). Avigilon Multisensor cameras were also set up to capture challenging angles and provide total coverage within a 180 to 360-degree area Avigilon H4 Platform Avigilon H4 bullet and dome cameras from the new H4 platform were installed, offering self-learning video analytics, greater resolution performance and Wide Dynamic Range support. Avigilon H4 cameras are available in 1 to 5 MP and 4K Ultra HD (8 MP) resolutions. Avigilon Multisensor cameras were also set up to capture challenging angles and provide total coverage within a 180 to 360-degree area. Upgrading the district’s surveillance solutions began three years ago with a single high school as a pilot program. The success of this replacement led the district to integrate ACC in other school projects and, in 2014, Fulton opened new administrative centres with both Avigilon access control and video surveillance solutions. At the start of 2017, Fulton began implementing a three-year approach to completing the upgrade. Image quality and resolution Before switching to the Avigilon solution, the district was challenged with low system reliability, which resulted in not having video evidence when needed. Furthermore, in situations where there was recorded footage, it was not of high enough quality to provide value. With the installation of Avigilon video surveillance, Fulton has benefited from exceptional image quality and resolution across wide areas in all lighting conditions. The ongoing Avigilon implementation will provide the district with crucial and powerful insights that can help save time and effort during critical investigations. With the help of Avigilon trusted security solutions, the future looks bright for Fulton County Schools.
ASSA ABLOY UK Specification, a UK division of ASSA ABLOY, a provider of door opening solutions, has assisted with the design and specification of doorsets and relevant hardware for the new Silverstone CE Primary School. Working alongside Northamptonshire County Council, local firm pHp Architects and contractor Lakehouse Construction, the UK Specification team helped deliver the full-scale build of the two-form entry primary school. Products specified included 92 ASSA ABLOY laminate-faced timber doorsets, complete with redwood frames and dark grey PVC edges, making them easy to clean and to help conceal scuffs from daily use. Timber doorsets The colour contrast between the edge of the door and the door surface also helped to achieve an inclusive environment, in line with the latest legislation and guidelines such as Approved Document M of The Building Regulations 2000 and BS8300:2009+A1:2010. The doorsets were complemented by a full ironmongery specification of ASSA 3228 ZP hinges, ASSA ABLOY DC200 Rack & Pinion Door Closers, Union Optimus 3 Locks, UNION J1000 door furniture and ASSA finger guards, which prevent pupils’ fingers from being trapped in closing doors. We have worked on a number of education projects and pride ourselves on tailoring the solutions we provide from our extensive experience in the sector" Masterkey access system The specification also included ASSA’s P600 cylinders for internal and external doors as well as external gates, providing the school with one masterkey system and permitting access to authorised personnel only. Chris Wayman, Associate at pHp Architects commented: “ASSA ABLOY UK Specification not only supplied high quality and fit-for-purpose products, but they also provided a full consultancy service, which took into account factors such as pupil comfort, flow of traffic around the school, as well as the need for staff to access certain areas of the building efficiently and securely. We are delighted with the finished result.” James Bloomfield, Headteacher at Silverstone CE Primary School said: “Working with the UK Specification team was straightforward from start to finish. The doors and ironmongery specified really enhance what is an exceptional building.” David Shields, National Specification Manager at ASSA ABLOY UK Specification, added: “We have worked on a number of education projects and pride ourselves on tailoring the solutions we provide from our extensive experience in the sector.” Risk management “The challenge in all schools is to prioritise safety and minimise the risk of injury, while providing a comfortable learning and teaching environment for both pupils and staff." "We believe we have not only achieved this, but also exceeded expectations with the solutions we helped design and specify via our BIM capabilities and personable one-to-one service.”
The Security Industry Association (SIA) has expressed strong support for MI HB 5828 and HB5830, two bills designed to improve school security across the state of Michigan. Michigan Legislation In a letter to Michigan House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations Chairwoman Laura Cox and Vice-Chair Rob VerHeulen, SIA CEO Don Erickson praised the bills’ creation of a comprehensive school plan and fund to enable local districts to procure security solutions to protect students from malicious perpetrators and update building code requirements to include security measures. “Sadly, our nation’s schools have increasingly become a soft target for mass violence – at Sandy Hook Elementary, recently at Stoneman Douglas High School and in many other attacks,” said Erickson. “We support holistic approaches to improving school safety and security in response to these tragedies – recognising there is no single action that can be taken that will, by itself, make our schools safe.” SIA is a co-founder of the Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS), a consortium of school security experts Improving school security SIA represents about 900 security and life safety solutions providers – companies that develop, manufacture and integrate technologies that help keep people and property safe from hazards. These industry leaders strive to introduce robust security solutions integrated into our nation’s K–12 public schools, private academic institutions, colleges and universities. In addition to serving member organisations working to improve security in schools and other environments, SIA is a co-founder of the Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS), a consortium of school security experts that developed threat- and income-based guidelines for schools housing grades K–12 to implement appropriate, layered security measures. These guidelines are available to help guide school investments. Additionally, PASS provides integrators with risk assessments and white papers that can be used when working with schools to evaluate and establish the best security protections for their buildings. SIA believes state assistance like that in the Michigan legislation is a start to addressing key security gaps in schools and is especially critical to high-risk school districts or those with limited budgets.
The Everett Public School district is located in Everett, Washington, the largest city in Snohomish County. The school System includes 27 schools spanning 39 square miles, with a Student population of almost 20,000. With so many campuses to monitor and protect, it was clear that the older surveillance system, a mix of off-brand analogue products accumulated over three decades located at each site, was no longer adequate. Thanks in part to a state-wide grant, in 2014, Everett Public Schools upgraded their entire video security infrastructure to a digital, IP-based system which included Wisenet cameras from Hanwha Techwin, and an OnSSI Ocularis Video Management Solution (VMS). Comprehensive video surveillance system The information technology department was asked to design a modern security system that would serve the district’s current needs, be cost effective and handle future expansion. To accomplish the task for all campuses, they recently constructed a centralised, state-of-the-art data centre for the district headquarters in Everett. The initial IP camera system, featuring Hanwha Techwin products, was installed in 2014 to provide security video coverage at the then new district headquarters by RFI Communications. In 2015 a district wide video system was installed by Cabling & Technology Services. The video surveillance system was built to provide information and access to multiple stakeholders in the school district. While campus security officers are primary users of the system, not everyone needs to see everything and the ability to precisely control access to feeds has been key to simplifying the system for administrators and principals, while still allowing law enforcement comprehensive access if required.The move from siloed analogue security systems for each school to a centralised hub architecture for all video feeds has been a huge success for the organisation Centralised IP surveillance system The move from siloed analogue security systems for each school to a centralised hub architecture for all video feeds has been a huge success for the organisation. The district has achieved a new level of control, quality and confidence. With over 600 cameras in use, and more Wisenet series cameras from Hanwha added regularly, the ability to expand and manage the system is a key benefit for the district and its security partners. Like a typical data centre, and unlike a typical school, the Everett Public Schools data centre has power backup and redundancies in place. In addition to the security infrastructure, all data processing for every system, across all campuses, happens centrally at the data centre. Edge analytics “The Hanwha Techwin cameras integrate perfectly with our VMS system and we particularly like the on-the-edge analytics that the cameras provide in addition to using motion to trigger recording,” says Brandon Knutson, Video Security System Manager for Everett Public Schools. “In most cases, we record only during motion or other analytic triggers. The latest Wisenet cameras come with an entire suite of analytics which includes loitering, intrusion, entry, exit, disappear, and more, but we mainly use the intrusion function, which we find very reliable.” Low light performance “We’ve been using the Wisenet X series for single imager cameras and we really like those,” adds Knutson. “Two significant differentiators about these cameras are their wide dynamic range and their performance in low light. It’s pretty phenomenal. Any camera can give you good daytime vision, but when things get tough it really separates out the camera vendors.”Two significant differentiators about these cameras are their wide dynamic range and their performance in low light" Multi-stream capabilities Because of the close integration with OnSSI, Knutson and the team are able to utilise the multi-stream capabilities of the Wisenet cameras, dynamically switching between an H.264 low res and H.265 high res image when required. When viewing a grid of 6 x 6 cameras on the Ocularis VMS, the smaller images can utilise the low-res stream. This keeps CPU/GPU usage low. If an operator clicks on an image to enlarge it, it automatically switches to the H.265 higher frame rate image for more detail and resolution. “We’re currently installing our first Wisenet 9080 multi-sensor and we’re excited by the economies of scale we can achieve with the se cameras, while making no sacrifices in terms of performance and flexibility,” says Knutson. “We are currently testing the X series rugged interior cameras. We’re particularly interested in the sound analytics that come with those cameras. We’re looking at gunshot, explosion, and glass breakage analytics.” Cybersecurity “We like Hanwha Techwin’s commitment to cyber-security. We’re very aware of the cyber-security issues surrounding some camera manufacturers, and we feel good about the company’s South Korean ownership. Moving forward, we have a new elementary school in planning, and we’ll be using Hanwha Techwin cameras there too. Thankfully, the Hanwha Techwin product line has a camera for every need that we have,” concludes Knutson.
A safe school environment is a prerequisite for productive learning. When students feel as though their safety is compromised, this affects their learning performance. To enhance levels of security, it’s important to know which methods of lockdown are suited and which should be avoided. Andrew Shaw, architectural consultant for Allegion UK, discusses the importance of bespoke security solutions and prioritising quality. He says, 'Students need to feel safe in order to learn.' Safe and secure classroom environment Research has shown that classroom climate – all of the characteristics of a classroom – correlates with student achievement. This means that if students feel unsafe, it’s likely to affect their performance. However, because there’s no single, 'one size fits all' answer to security, implementing the 'right' solution may seem like a minefield. On top of knowing specific performance requirements, school governing bodies must know which locking protocols to adhere to and which to avoid School lockdown protocols Because of this, it’s now more important than ever that school officials not only know the options available to them but are also making decisions tailored to their own individual requirements. On top of knowing specific performance requirements, school governing bodies must know which locking protocols to adhere to and which to avoid. Security at every layer A safe and secure environment is at the crux of every successful school strategy. When it comes to classroom security, significance should be placed on how staff and teachers can maximise their protection and that of students. The key to any successful classroom lockdown operation is selecting the appropriate credentials based on individual requirements. Selecting appropriate credentials In addition to this, one thing that various credentials are often accused of is being too costly an investment to step into. In reality, a limited budget shouldn’t put a compromise on high-quality products. That’s not to ignore the fact that many schools are under budget pressures. However, the scope of security solutions available to the UK market means that schools are able to find solutions suited to their needs and budget. Implementing an effective lockdown safety plan, including staff protocol and places to hide, can also help you in being prepared for critical situations Dos There are a number of baseline protocols to uphold to ensure classroom security is kept at an all-time high. For example, remembering to keep doors closed and locked while rooms are in use will enable faster lockdown in emergency situations. Implementing an effective lockdown safety plan, including staff protocol and places to hide, can also help you in being prepared for critical situations. Installing hardware suited to your needs – whether mechanical, electronic or a combination – are each beneficial for everyday use as well as in emergencies. Don’ts There are some measures that don’t mitigate risk, they instead put staff and students in greater danger. It’s easy to overlook what may seem a harmless practice, but which is actually a violation of safety regulations – such as propping doors open and locking emergency exits. All entrances should aid free access and egress, not only for ease of passage but also in the event that emergency responders may be called to the site Cutting out unauthorised access All entrances should aid free access and egress, not only for ease of passage but also in the event that emergency responders may be called to the site. With locking credentials, it’s also important to keep control of who can access the buildings so that unauthorised persons are on record. Electronic access control systems, for example, are designed for stricter security on who has access to a site and at which time it was accessed. Electronic door access control Furthermore, one of the biggest fallacies in the door hardware industry is that quality must be compromised to make room for affordability. Whilst this could have been put down to a lack of choice years and years ago, there are now products tailored to each and every need notwithstanding limitations such as budgets. On top of this, it’s no use to switch out to a cheaper, less safe product that could ultimately cost more in the long-term if you’re to consider maintenance costs. Areas such as building entrances, must balance the need for access control with accessibility and freedom of movement The myth of ‘one size fits all’ Every school is as diverse as the people it houses. Multiple types of credentials may be used within a school, depending on your unique needs. Particular aspects that ought to be given consideration are the severity and probability of any potential risks, the effectiveness of mitigating potential risks, the ability of staff to implement lockdown, and the school’s budget. Areas such as building entrances, for example, must balance the need for access control with accessibility and freedom of movement.