Shopping centre security
Most technology companies have one goal in mind: to provide customers with high-quality, affordable products that can efficiently help streamline operations. Whether it's surveillance cameras, video management software, access control technology or any other type of security device, today's leading organisations invest in expertise in these product segments and strive to produce the highest quality solutions. To effectively fulfill this task, technology providers are always searching for emergi...
With the impact of a rapidly developing online shopping industry through PC and mobile devices, retail stores are facing great challenges. In a fiercely competitive market, enlarging the customer base and maintaining their loyalty become increasingly important and at the same time – very difficult. Improving customer satisfaction, maximising per-customer transactions, ensuring a safe environment, and reducing unnecessary loss have become a major focus of retail owners and chain store compa...
Western Digital Purple microSDAs announces the adoption of 4K Ultra HD video, emerging artificial intelligence (AI) applications and analytics drive the rapid growth and evolution of data in surveillance, Western Digital Corp. unveiled the Western Digital Purple microSD card, purpose-built for the complex and dynamic data demands of modern surveillance cameras and edge systems. Surveillance system operators can count on the robust Western Digital Purple microSD card to support a continuous surv...
Hikvision, a global IoT solutions provider with video as its core technology, has announced a new plug-in for its thermal and speed dome cameras as a result of continuing collaboration with its strategic partner, Milestone Systems. This gives operators a better situational awareness through visual verification of alarms. Hikvision’s plug-in for Milestone XProtect enables the operator to view ‘bounding boxes’ in the XProtect Smart Client and to receive alarms from a Hikvision t...
The Middle East security market provides a healthy opportunity for manufacturers who can capitalise on the region’s key verticals. Intersec’s 20th edition show focused more on solutions than on products, including solutions for the growing retail sector and an infrastructure market requiring ruggedised equipment to stand up to harsh environments. Intersec hosted security, safety and fire protection exhibitors from over fifty countries at Dubai’s spacious International Conventi...
As physical stores look to push the boundaries of retail design, demand for non-intrusive security systems at the store entrance/exit is growing. Checkpoint Systems, a supplier of source to shopper solutions for the global retail industry, has responded with the launch of an underfloor RFID antenna, UF-1. Delivering the same market-leading quality as Checkpoint’s more traditional EAS antennas, but using unique, patented RFID reader technology, the UF-1 system offers a large read range, wi...
VIVOTEK, the IP surveillance solution provider, has announced the launch of its multi-adjustable sensor dome camera, the MA8391-ETV. Featuring four independent 3-megapixel CMOS sensors, the MA8391-ETV allows users to simultaneously view four different areas while occupying only a single IP address. This not only reduces the installation time and total number of cameras needed, but also reduces management effort and maintenance costs. Due to its unique and small design, the camera is perfect for surveillance of large areas, such as parking lots and shopping centres, as well as for spaces like hallways intersections and building corners. See More in Smarter Ways Building on its strategy of “See More in Smarter Ways”, VIVOTEK is proud to roll out the brand new MA8391-ETV. Especially equipped with four independent sensors, each sensor features 3-megapixel and a 2.8 to 8 millimetre lens with remote-focus capability, allowing clients to both monitor wide spaces and retain a clear view of all details with the zoom-in function. This versatility makes operators are able to remotely tune the zoom and focus of each individual lens precisely, enabling full 360° coverage. Furthermore, it deploys SNV (Supreme Night Visibility) technology and a removable IR-cut filter, making it a true professional day and night camera. With an IK10 and IP66-rated housing and -40°C to 55°C operating temperature range, the MA8391-ETV is able to withstand rain and dust, and is safeguarded against vandalism and tampering when deployed for outdoor surveillance. Equipped with all the above features, the MA8391-ETV is the smallest of its type with a diameter of 21 centimetres but still packs a powerful punch.
With the changing “lone wolf” style of terrorism, there will be a trend toward many more installations of vehicle access control systems and smaller numbers of units. Where a university, military base or airport might have 20-plus systems scattered among its grounds, there will be a growing number of smaller applications needing one, two or three systems. These will include customers such as primary and secondary education facilities; pedestrian locations such as shopping centres, concert grounds and fairs; hospitals and other venues where pedestrians come together both daily or temporarily. Defending against vehicle attack The Middle East is a particular hotbed for increased security measures for explosive-laden vehicles. Many soft targets in the Middle East have also been adding anti-terrorist, crash-resistant barriers, barricades and bollards. This has been also true in Europe while Southeast Asia is coming on strong. With so many more such systems being ordered, buyers will need to become more aware of their supplier's customer service and technical support. The market could be faced with an upcoming slew of cut-throat, unscrupulous operators providing shoddy equipment and dangerous installations that take advantage of buyers who don't understand what is truly needed to defend against vehicle attack. Importance of certified vehicle barriers This time last year, we projected that the use of vehicles as weapons to mow down pedestrians, such as occurred in Nice (France), would probably impact greater sales of Delta portable crash-rated barricades. Although it was announced by ISIS that their followers should undertake more of these attacks, we don't think anyone anticipated the numbers of such atrocities we would see, the latest (as of this writing) the assault on the bike path in New York City. The largest customers around the world have been law enforcement agencies and municipalities. Security specialists needto be aware of vehicle threats wherever people are gathered Last year, we also warned that many organisations, in order to save money, were purchasing non-certified (non-rated) vehicles access control systems with less structural safety than those provided by certified manufacturers. The reality is that somebody is going to have to be hurt or killed before some buyers understand that a barrier, barricade or bollard is not a commodity type of product. Security specialists must be aware With the economy being better, there has been a resulting increase in sales of products for general parking and similar applications. But, as terrorist attacks have gone from large planned scenarios to smaller lone-wolf assaults, such as the bike path incident in New York, there is an increasing need for more protection from vehicle harm in more places. Basically, security specialists need to be aware of vehicle threats wherever people are gathered, from a parade route to a fair, sporting event, shopping centre – anywhere scores of people are clustered. One of the interesting statistics we ran across this year was that, in the United States, six of the top 10 rated college football teams use Delta temporary barricades to protect fans at their stadiums on game days. During 2017, Delta has been developing new products to take on the increased protection of vehicle checkpoints between the United States and Mexico. Over the years, Delta has implemented vehicle crossing protection at many of the most secure sites including El Paso, San Ysidro, Calexico, Otay Mesa and Tornhill-Guadalupe.
The term “smart city” gets thrown around a lot nowadays, but as different technologies that strive to be defined in this way are adopted by different countries globally, the meaning of this phrase gets lost in translation. The simplest way to define a “smart city” is that it is an urban area that uses different types of data collecting sensors to manage assets and resources efficiently. One of the most obvious types of “data collecting sensor” is the video camera, whether that camera is part of a city’s existing CCTV infrastructure, a camera in a shopping centre or even a police car’s dash camera. The information gathered by video cameras can be used with two purposes in mind, firstly: making people’s lives more efficient, for example by managing traffic, and secondly (and arguably more importantly): making people’s lives safer. Live streaming video all the time, everywhere In the smart and safe city, traditional record-only video cameras are of limited use. Yes, they can be used to collect video which can be used for evidence after a crime has taken place, but there is no way that this technology could help divert cars away from an accident to avoid traffic building up, or prevent a crime from taking place in the first place. However, streaming live video from a camera that isn’t connected to an infrastructure via costly fibre optic cabling has proven challenging for security professionals, law enforcement and city planners alike. This is because it isn’t viable to transmit video reliably over cellular networks, in contrast to simply receiving it. Video transmission challenges Transmitting video normally results in freezing and buffering issues which can hinder efforts to fight crime and enable flow within a city, as these services require real-time, zero latency video without delays. Therefore, special technology is required that copes with poor and varying bandwidths to allow a real-time view of any scene where cameras are present to support immediate decision making and smart city processes. The information gatheredby video cameras can beused to make people’s lives more efficient, and to make people’s lives safer There are many approaches to transmitting video over cellular. We’ve developed a specialist codec (encoding and decoding algorithm) that can provide secure and reliable video over ultra-low bandwidths and can therefore cope when networks become constrained. Another technique, which is particularly useful if streaming video from police body worn cameras or dash cams that move around, is to create a local wireless “bubble” at the scene, using Wi-Fi or mesh radio systems to provide local high-bandwidth communications that can communicate with a central location via cellular or even satellite communications. Enhanced city surveillance Live video streaming within the smart and safe city’s infrastructure means that video’s capabilities can go beyond simple evidence recording and evolve into a tool that allows operations teams to monitor and remediate against incidents as they are happening. This can be taken one step further with the deployment of facial recognition via live streaming video. Facial recognition technology can be added on to any video surveillance camera that is recording at a high enough quality to identify faces. The technology works by capturing video, streaming the live video back to a control centre and matching faces against any watch lists that the control centre owns. Importantly, the data of people who aren’t on watch lists is not stored by the technology. Identifying known criminals This technology can work to make the city safer in a number of ways. For example, facial recognition could spot a known drug dealer in a city centre where they weren’t supposed to be, or facial recognition could identify if a group of known terror suspects were visiting the same location at the same time, and this would send an alert to the police. Facial recognition technology captures and streams live back to a control centre, matching faces against any watch lists that the control centre owns In an ideal world where the police had an automated, electronic workflow, the police officer nearest to the location of the incident would be identified by GPS and would be told by the control room where to go and what to do. Most police forces aren’t quite at this technological level yet, and would probably rely on communicating via radio in order to send the nearest response team to the scene. As well as this, shopping centres could create a database from analogue records of known shoplifters to identify criminals as soon as they entered the building. This would be even more effective if run co-operatively between all shopping centres and local businesses in an area, and would not only catch any known shoplifters acting suspiciously, but would act as a deterrent from shoplifting in the first place. Live streaming for police As mentioned above, live streaming video from CCTV cameras can help the police fight crime more proactively rather than reactively. This can be enhanced even further if combined with live streaming video from police car dash cams and police body worn cameras. If video was streamed from all of these sources to a central HQ, such as a police operations centre, the force would be able to have full situational awareness throughout an incident. This would mean that, if need be, officers could be advised on the best course of action, and additional police or other emergency services could be deployed instantly if needed. Incorporated with facial recognition, this would also mean that police could instantly identify if they were dealing with known criminals or terrorists. Whilst they would still have to confirm the identity of the person with questioning or by checking their identification, this is still more streamlined than describing what a person looks like over a radio and then ops trying to manually identify if the person is on a watch list. The smart, safe city is possible today – for one, if live video streaming capabilities are deployed they can enable new levels of flow in the city. With the addition of facial recognition, cities will be safer than ever before and law enforcement and security teams will be able to proactively stop crime before it happens by deterring criminal activity from taking place at all.
As a grocery store or supermarket owner, it is very hard to fight theft. Shoplifting and retail theft may not seem like a major deal, but to the small business fighting for survival, it has a big impact on the bottom line. A disadvantage of traditional tools for fighting shoplifting is that they are most effective when the shoplifter is caught red-handed. Once the shoplifter has concealed the stolen product in his or her clothing or bag, it is very hard to see whether something has been stolen. This paper explores how thermal imaging technology from FLIR and Nexo Group can detect stolen goods that are hidden under clothing, reducing losses up to 60%. Find out more about: Disadvantages of traditional security methods How heat catches thieves Reducing losses up to 60% Radiometric camera technology
Hikvision, a supplier of innovative video surveillance products and solutions, has launched a new addition to its Turbo HD 4.0 analogue range with PIR technology to give it even more accurate detection. The PIR (Passive Infra-Red) sensor, which has a detection range of 11 metres, senses movement in an area. It has been added to four models (DS-2CExxD8T-PIR(L) series), so it is available in three form factors – bullet, dome and cube. Filtering our false alarms The sensor can filter out false alarms by differentiating between the infrared emissions of a human being from the other ‘noise’. So, when an inanimate object moves, there’s no alarm, but when it senses human body movement, an alarm is triggered. In the meantime, the camera generates flashing white light as a warning signal to deter the intruder, while it also provides supplemental light, allowing the camera to capture clearer image of the target in harsh environment. Filtering out false alarms saves on storage space and also means more efficient searching post-event, as there are fewer alarms to look through. The cameras are also equipped with ultra low-light technology, so they can produce clear, high quality images even in low-light scenarios – down to 0.005 lux. Camera applications These cameras are really useful in applications where cost is a relevant factor, like for private residences and outside smaller retail outlets. Keen Yao, VP at Hikvision International Business Centre, said: “We are pleased to extend our Turbo HD 4.0 range even further to meet more customer needs. This technology comes into its own in perimeter protection, on fire doors in buildings and dynamic fire detection. Applications include those areas with large areas to monitor, like airports, harbours, borders, industry and shopping centres.”
A business owner arrives at his office one morning to find a door open, windows broken, and property strewn about. After calling the police, he reviews the surveillance video: not much more than blurry images of indiscernible shapes here and there. A car’s headlights flicker across the scene. Then nothing. A night security officer hears an alarm, then sees a truck erratically driving away from a prohibited area. He calls in a report and requests law enforcement. After the area is secure, they review the security camera feed: black and white blurs; vaguely human silhouettes; darkness. The only witness says they heard something, but couldn’t see anyone. Night-time video surveillance Scenes like these are all too common. Of all known crimes, 70% happen at night, hidden under cover of darkness. To effectively reduce that crime statistic, video surveillance systems must extend and enhance surveillance capabilities into the dark, alerting security personnel before an event occurs. Today, Hikvision is equipping video surveillance hardware to shatter that statistic and take night time video surveillance deeper into the darkness, lifting the cover of night to capture the kind of information that will lead to the prosecution of criminals. Learning from the human eye In humans, two types of photoreceptive cells – rods and cones – sit on the rear inner surface of the eye, known as the retina. These two light-sensitive cell types independently perform different functions to capture the visible world around us. The rods respond to brightness while cones capture and identify colours. The brain fuses the information into a single image. Nature did it first, but emerging technology is going further. Hikvision’s DarkFighterX Series technology was developed from insight into the way human eyes see. Infrared sensors in the camera capture reflected Infrared light that is invisible to the human eye but very “bright” to the sensors – similar to the rods in our eyes. While these IR sensors only transmit in black and white, visible-light sensors in the camera are simultaneously detecting and decoding colours – like the cones mentioned above. Both sensors sit behind a single lens, just as the rods and cones in our eyes. Hikvision is equipping video surveillance hardware to shatter that statistic and take night time video surveillance deeper into the darkness The camera combines the two spectrums of light to create video and images – the brightness of the IR sensors imbued with the low-light colour. Hikvision refers to this as bi-spectral technology. The result? DarkFighterX renders higher brightness, better colour fidelity, sharper edges, and less noise and blur. Extension, expansion, and application Video surveillance systems must extend and enhance surveillance capabilities into the darkness in order to reduce the overwhelming amount of night time crime. This has been the pursuit of Hikvision’s R&D teams for many years now, and many amazing technologies have resulted. Applications for this camera and its advanced technology range widely. Systems integrators will likely find adaptations for the DarkFighterX that even go beyond what Hikvision foresees. At first glance, applications include crime-prone areas of cities after dark: sidewalks and streets, alleyways and retail centres, for example. Tourist areas and scenic destinations can be monitored by the DarkFighterX, such as rivers, lakes and beaches, forests, public squares, historical monuments, and more. Critical infrastructure locations are often prime targets for criminals. Ports, electrical and other power plants, railways, airports, and other transport hubs, and international borders are just a few of the examples for this area of application. Wherever there is a security vulnerability at night, that is where the DarkFighterX Series shines. Mimicking human sight The DarkFighterX Series cameras expand upon the human sense of sight by first mimicking the human eye – two distinct sensors capturing and combining brightness and colours – then extending that ability in extremely low-light environments. The technology results in colourful, bright, and accurate imaging on security monitors, making night time surveillance video appear nearly as clear as daytime video. With the DarkFighterX Series, Hikvision can – almost literally – place hundreds of eyes over a wide expanse of space, giving security personnel “sight” that’s quite beyond anything they have seen before – even in the dark. You just might not believe it … until you see it.
The large crowds that regularly flock to downtown Houston, Texas, known as GreenStreet, call for heightened security measures. However, the 570,000-square-foot mixed-use centre needed to balance a high level of security while maintaining an open and inviting environment that accommodates numerous businesses, delivery drivers, service providers and others who need open access to the property. With an eye towards improving both security and efficiency, the property’s owners decided it was time for a system upgrade. Choosing Hanwha Techwin Working with Houston-based Today’s Integration Inc., GreenStreet evaluated offerings from a number of vendors before selecting Hanwha Techwin as its video surveillance solutions provider. The decision was based on the quality, functionality, versatility and expandability of Hanwha Techwin’s products. Through SSM, GreenStreet’s security personnel can also enter log notes to maintain detailed activity records Today’s Integration designed an advanced video surveillance solution built on Samsung Security Manager (SSM) video management software. The system allows GreenStreet’s security staff to monitor live and recorded video, control PTZ cameras and communicate via two-way audio from a central command centre. The system employs multiple Samsung 5080R IP dome cameras, SNP-5200H PTZ dome cameras and 6084R fixed cameras. The system’s NVRs are located in a server room and are connected directly to cameras for recording and to SSM for video playback. Video is transmitted across GreenStreet’s network via hybrid fibre, connecting the multi-site buildings to distribution switches, which also provide PoE to the Samsung cameras also implemented by Today’s Integration, Inc. providing a turn-key solution. Implementing new security measures When vendors, contractors or service providers arrive at the bay doors, they press the intercom’s call button to contact GreenStreet’s security staff at the control centre. Simultaneously, a live video feed pops up on-screen in the security command centre, allowing staff to see and communicate with the individual at the door. Through SSM, GreenStreet’s security personnel can also enter log notes to maintain detailed activity records. The system has also proven effective in assisting the Houston Police Department, which requests video from time. Best of all, the video surveillance solution is easily scalable, allowing more cameras and NVRs to be added as GreenStreet continues to grow and expand.
With 4 million square feet of space, the Megabangna Shopping Centre is the first shopping centre of its kind in Thailand. Implementing a comprehensive security system was an important part of ensuring the safety and security of customers, and the Centre’s loss prevention strategy. By addressing gaps in coverage throughout the shopping centre, the security team knew that they could more easily track down lost items for distressed visitors, monitor suspicious activity, and in turn prove or disprove claims. To enhance safety, the Centre, in partnership with security systems integrator Entech, deployed a complete Avigilon surveillance solution, including 500 cameras, which were installed throughout the shopping centre and the parking lot to provide full coverage of open areas. Chosen camera models included Avigilon HD Multisensor, H4 Bullet and H4 Dome cameras. H4 Dome and H4 Bullet cameras provide exceptional image quality in a range of different settings H4 dome and H4 bullet cameras H4 Dome and H4 Bullet cameras provide exceptional image quality in a range of different settings, while the HD Multisensor camera has up to four cameras that cover up to 360 degrees of viewing range. These combined camera solutions help minimise blind spots, which allows the Centre’s security team to monitor important activity throughout the premises, both indoors and outside. The cameras are only half the solution for the Centre. The hub of the security solution is the Avigilon Control Center (ACC) video management software. With advanced and fast video search features, the software enables security operators to quickly find and review surveillance footage, helping the Centre security team resolve thefts and similar claims at a higher rate than with the legacy solution. Retail security Southeast Asia’s diverse mall scene offers unique shopping experiences for tourists as well as locals, with high-end boutiques to one-of-a-kind night markets. Megabangna Shopping Centre, located in Bangkok, is one of Thailand’s largest retail complexes. With 4 million square feet of space, over 840 retail shops, and parking for 10,000 vehicles, the Centre is the first shopping mall of its kind in the region—creating a unique security need. The Centre is the first shopping mall of its kind in the region - creating a unique security need With the motto ‘Everything Under One Roof,’ the Centre quickly earned a reputation as the perfect place to spend the weekend with friends and family, or to pick up everyday household needs. As a result, excessive crowds pack the walkways and its 10,000 parking spots are regularly filled. Safety and security of customers Given the complexity of the Centre facility, and the high foot and vehicle traffic acquired onsite, the security solutions in place needed to be reassessed. Commonly reported incidents at the mall included cars being vandalised or broken into while parked in on-site structures, and busy shoppers losing personal items throughout the mall grounds during their visit. The safety and security of customers—along with ensuring a great customer experience for every visit—are top priorities for the Centre. Implementing a comprehensive security system was also an important part of the Centre’s loss prevention strategy to save the company time and money. The installation of Avigilon solutions took half the estimated length of time, making the transition easy for the Centre’s team from the start. Avigilon’s easy-to-use software helps them search footage in under 10 minutes ACC software Once installation was complete, ACC software further simplified things for the security team by allowing them to identify problematic situations with powerful and efficient software. When searching footage of areas with heavy foot traffic, the Centre’s security team was able to identify problems around the busy centre in record-breaking time. Since deploying ACC software, the Centre has shortened a process that at times could take hours or days—Avigilon’s easy-to-use software helps them search footage in under 10 minutes, while saving effort and money during an investigation. Given this measurable success, the Centre recently expanded the use of Avigilon solutions into an additional parking structure. Avigilon solutions implemented help make the security team’s jobs easier and keep patrons safe.
Checkpoint pioneered RF technology’s use in the retail industry and is now ushering in a new era through the introduction of a brand new electronics platform that is resetting the boundaries of what is achievable, both in terms of antenna design and functionality. Simon Edgar, Senior Director EAS Systems & Software at Checkpoint Systems, gives some information about the thought process behind the new NEO system. 1. Checkpoint is noted as inventing the first Radio Frequency-based Electronic Article Surveillance system, what would you say has been the main driver for you to re-think the whole Radio Frequency design? “Checkpoint has a long reputation of delivering quality RF hardware and labels. We have maintained our position as the market leader as we’re always looking for ways to improve the solutions we offer. That said, there are only so many antenna designs and innovations that you can come up with, while working from the same blue print. With the rapid rate of change retailers are having to adapt to, it made sense that our solutions were able to cope with these changes, particularly the increasing demand for connectivity between multiple new technologies and sensors. That’s when we started to think outside of the box, about redefining the antenna design – so that this valuable piece of hardware is fit for the rigours of today’s retail environment.” 2. How did you set about creating NEO? “Discussions about a new electronics platform started a couple of years ago. As technology changes, the options to adapt our electronics platform also open up, so we started to re-think the traditional RF loop concept. Bricks and mortar stores are striving to be more technologically advanced and connected in everything they do, in order to bring new customers through the doors and maximise their sales.As technology changes, the options to adapt our electronics platform also open up, so we started to re-think the traditional RF loop concept" So it made sense to apply the same philosophy to our antenna portfolio. We’re extremely proud of what we have achieved in such a short period of time. It demonstrates that we’re at the forefront of retail technology and not many vendors can have a market ready product available within just eight months.” 3. How many people have been involved in its development? “The project was split in two, with an electronics development team and an antenna design team. All together the project has involved Checkpoint employees from around the globe, including 20 engineers, 10 technical designers and the entire senior management team of Checkpoint. This doesn’t include marketing, sales and our customers – who have been involved throughout the process. It has been a true team effort and we have combined the wealth of retail experience and technical know-how within our business to create something really special.” 4. Acousto-Magnetic (AM) technology has presented some benefits to retailers over Radio Frequency, including wider aisles. Why have you continued to invest in RF? “We believe that RF technology has more benefits than Acousto-Magnetic, including cost, detection and energy usage. It has always been our preferred option for antenna, labels and source tagging – where we protect manufactured goods straight out of the factory. The latter often involves a wide selection of differing tag sizes and formats, and when we started to investigate new ways to lay out the electronics, previous performance boundaries related to tag size started to melt away. We soon realised that the NEO platform would enable us to incorporate new connected technology, while early test results showed the detection rates in the new electronics configuration was outstanding, enabling retailers to achieve the same distance between antennas that AM technology provides.” 5. You are using NEO to develop sensors for different vertical markets, why is it important that different stores have different types of antenna? “When shopping on the high street or in malls, you usually spend a few hours browsing. Stores spend a lot of time to make their displays appealing and ensuring entrances are as open as possible to entice people in. As such there has been increasing demand for antenna designs that are minimalistic and deliver a clear eye line to the displays, rather than customers’ not being able to see past the point of entry/exit security systems. In contrast, grocery or DIY stores tend to have more frequent footfall, often with trolleys. Designs for these environments need to be sturdy enough to take a few knocks and last a good few years under these harsher conditions. Thanks to the NEO electronics platform, the scope for varied designs has opened up dramatically, so over the next 12 months expect to see some exciting design concepts that can be utilised across the retail industry.” 6. Do you see the adoption of RFID speeding up across Europe, and is that why being able to upgrade to RFID is important? “RFID has been talked about for a while and many retailers are now beginning to adopt this technology. We are also seeing the emergence of Bluetooth and NFC, while some retailers are experimenting with other wireless technology, Chatbots, VR, AR and AI. The customer journey is more complex and a diverse range of solutions are being created that help stores communicate with customers and improve the shopper experience.Over the next 12 months expect to see some exciting design concepts that can be utilised across the retail industry" So really, it’s not just about upgrading to RFID anymore, it’s about all round connectivity. By offering a wide range of ‘intelligent’ options, our NEO electronics present retailers with the ability to upgrade at any time; we are expanding retailer options beyond what has ever been possible with entry/exit systems.” 7. Connectivity is a key USP of NEO; how are retailers looking to connect their stores and what are the common challenges? “As we just touched on, connectivity is playing an ever increasingly important role in the retail industry. Different technologies can be combined to provide wider information and hugely valuable, actionable data for retailers. NEO will become an active contributor to this data flow and will provide many different insights that will help a retail store run more effectively, not only in reducing losses, but improving customer engagement.” 8. 75% of retailers globally say their major investments in the next decade will be in in-store tech. Why is it important retailers introduce new technologies, like NEO, into their stores now? “Recent studies have shown that bricks and mortar stores are still an important part of the customer journey. In fact, a large percentage of shoppers still want to visit stores despite the ease of shopping online. But however they choose to shop, their expectations remain similar – they want to easily find what they are looking for, they expect instant customer service, and, perhaps most importantly, they want an easy checkout. This is where technology, like NEO, becomes a key part of a physical store’s modern day infrastructure. Delivering actionable, real time data to staff in-store, can significantly improve the consumer experience, keeping customers loyal and the store relevant in this new landscape.”
National Business Crime Solution (NBCS), a not-for-profit organisation that enables the sharing of data between law enforcement agencies and the business community in order to reduce crime, is celebrating the success of the very first Business Impact Reduction Day (BIRD)—also known as Operation BIRD—an industry-led initiative that is designed to target and manage the effect of business related crime activity. Police-assisted retail surveillance The initial exercise took place at Westfield shopping centre in London, where 51 security and loss prevention professionals from across the industry joined forces with the police service and retailers to target prolific and persistent offenders. The brainchild of NBCS, Operation BIRD was supported by the Metropolitan Police’s Business Crime Hub, National Business Crime Centre, Territorial Support Group, London Borough of Newham and Westfield Stratford City—all of which played a vital role in planning and executing the manoeuvre. The day began with a full briefing and the identification of persistent offenders, who were to be apprehended in a safe manner with no violence. In addition, a team of ‘super-recognisers’ from the Metropolitan Police was present to identify any other offenders on the police radar.Perhaps the most significant, and unexpected, result of the day concerned the apprehension of a 15-year-old female from the north of England Officers in this unit have the ability to instantly place a familiar face, a skill that some researchers estimate is present in just one percent of the population. Successful implementation with civil recovery Operation BIRD proved to be a remarkable success with 18 detentions and various actions including penalty notices, community resolutions and civil recoveries, as well as a number of arrests and charges. Perhaps the most significant, and unexpected, result of the day concerned the apprehension of a 15-year-old female from the north of England, who it transpired was the victim of child sexual exploitation and was being coerced into shoplifting. She is now under the auspices of the child protection authorities and currently in care. Retail security education and training NBCS managing director, Dan Hardy, commented, “The story of how this vulnerable young person came to be shoplifting in Westfield shopping centre was truly shocking. It has brought into sharp focus why safeguarding intervention requires sensitive and considerate handling when dealing with the victims of child sexual exploitation. "It has also highlighted the need for security service providers to educate their officers on this subject and implement consistent training. NBCS will be looking to drive this forward with its industry partners, while further Operation BIRD activities will take place around the country in places that NBCS intelligence suggests are crime hotspots.” Detective chief inspector, Georgina Barnard, leader of the National Business Crime Centre, was equally impressed with the results. She concluded, “Operation BIRD has proved what can be achieved when relevant parties join forces to target and prevent the impact of business related crime activity. I applaud NBCS for this initiative and look forward to working on similar activities in the future.”
It has been proven that fitting rooms present retailers with a great opportunity to sell more merchandise, but can also act as a “safe haven’ for dishonest shoppers to conceal garments and steal them. According to the most recent Global Retail Theft Barometer, apparel retail specialists have one of the highest shrinkage rates globally, accounting for 1.8% of sales. To help minimise the risk of this concealment theft, Checkpoint Systems, a global leading provider of source to shopper solutions to the retail industry, has announced the launch of a new solution – ApparelGUARD. Magnet detection technology Available as part of the connected store Solution Application EVOLVE-Store™, this unique magnet detection technology is installed in individual fitting rooms. It identifies when someone carrying an illegally obtained security tag detacher enters the cubicle. It then looks for its movement as a dishonest shopper attempts to remove tags from merchandise. The alarm is triggered when ApparelGUARD antennas have sensed both events – minimising false alarms. An alert is sent via the EVOLVE-Store Live App to ensure the incident is responded to by a member of staff. The solution is easy to install and can protect up to 10 fitting rooms, either as a standalone application or it can be networked into an existing EAS infrastructure using a special API. Peace of mind for retailers Simon Edgar, Senior Director - Product Management at Checkpoint Systems, from Checkpoint Systems commented: “ApparelGUARD represents a new way fitting rooms are protected. Retailers are aware of the conundrum posed by allowing shoppers to try merchandise on in-store, but allowing them to do so is a key element of providing an interactive experience and it’s proven to increase sales. This solution will give retailers peace of mind, providing a visual deterrent to make dishonest customers think twice before using them as a haven to detach tags.”
Recent times have seen Saudi Arabia experience development at a remarkable rate, but key industry sectors have not always been able to keep pace. While certain industries grew by leaps and bounds (architecture, technology), others took longer to find their stride. Take, for instance, the retail industry; up until the early 2000s, Saudi Arabia was still new to the idea of North American shopping malls—most people still preferred shopping at traditional neighbourhood convenience stores. Arabian Centres: Developer and operator One company single-handedly changed that: Arabian Centres. Founded in 2002 as a subsidiary of the Fawaz Alhokair Group, it is the developer and operator of 19 shopping centres in highly-populated cities, with over 1 million square metres of gross leasable area (GLA) under its management. This makes Arabian Centres the largest mall operator in the Kingdom. It has been an unprecedented change in the retail landscape of Saudi Arabia, and it shows no signs of stopping, with an additional 12 malls currently in development to help Arabian Centres reach its goal of 2 million GLA in the next 3 years. But just a few years prior, Arabian Centres was facing a significant challenge to its future operations: Security compliance. Upgrading security systems In 2015, changes in local security laws required Arabian Centres to upgrade their security systems across all 19 malls. Local security standards for video surveillance in retail establishments increased, requiring higher image quality and performance. Arabian Centres needed to meet those new requirements quickly to ensure their malls were up to code in order to continue operations.Local security standards for video surveillance increased, requiring higher image quality and performance Arabian Centres needed a partner that would not only help them satisfy applicable legal requirements, but also provide them with the hardware and software to meet their own personal standards of quality as a top-ranked market entity. Moreover, with 19 malls currently operational and more coming in the future, any security solutions they adopted would have to be scalable and versatile enough to meet a wide variety of unique scenarios. Upgrading to Avigilon Beginning in 2015, and continuing to the present day, the overall video surveillance system of Arabian Centres has been upgraded to the Avigilon surveillance solution. In the first phase of upgrades, Avigilon surveillance solutions were installed in 12 of the 19 malls; for phase two, the remaining seven malls will be upgraded with Avigilon solutions, with all malls expected to contain Avigilon solutions by 2018. Avigilon solutions that have been implemented: HD Dome Cameras – superior image resolution, self-learning video analytics and excellent low-light performance HD Pro Cameras – with up to 7K (30 MP) resolution, this camera line captures detailed images over vast areas and provides wide area coverage options Avigilon Control Center (ACC) Enterprise video management software – enhances the way security professionals interpret, manage and interact with high-definition surveillance video Network Video Recorders (NVRs) – Avigilon NVRs include pre-installed ACC™ software, high-performance recording technology, and a three-year Avigilon warranty with dedicated support The Avigilon solution provides higher image quality and performance at a lower than previously installed systems As the new video surveillance standard, each Arabian Centres mall features an average of 350 Avigilon cameras, including HD Dome and award-winning HD Pro cameras, network video recorders, and Avigilon Control Center™ video management software. The Avigilon surveillance solution provides higher image quality and performance at a lower cost of ownership than previously installed systems. By utilizing Avigilon 5K (16 MP) HD Pro cameras in their parking areas, it allows operators to cover the same area in greater detail with fewer cameras installed. With the adoption of Avigilon surveillance solutions, Arabian Centres met all security compliance laws across Saudi Arabia. Avigilon cameras provide the image detail and quality that police required, and Arabian Centres passed their inspections without issue.