Timely and important issues in the security marketplace dominated our list of most-clicked-upon articles in 2018. Looking back at the top articles of the year provides a decent summary of how our industry evolved this year, and even offers clues to where we’re headed in 2019. In the world of digital publishing, it’s easy to know what content resonates with the security market: Our readers tell us with their actions; i.e., where they click. Let’s look back at the Top 10 article...
Facial recognition has a long history dating back to the 1800s. To track down criminals, such as infamous bandits Jesse Woodson James and Billy the Kid, law enforcement would place “Wanted Alive or Dead” posters advertising bounties and soliciting public cooperation to help locate and even apprehend the alleged criminals. In addition to the bounty, these posters would include a photo and brief description of the crime, which would then be circulated to law enforcement agencies around...
Global and domestic threats have highlighted the need for tighter security across all verticals. One of the technologies that has redefined situational awareness and intrusion detection is thermal imaging. Once a technology exclusively manufactured for the military operations, thermal cameras today are deployed across hundreds of security applications and continue to see strong demand in existing and emerging commercial markets. With thermal technology, security personnel can see in complete...
Most cities have at very least a plan and in most cases an existing program to make themselves safe cities. Increasingly, cities around the world are transitioning to become smart cities: urban areas where security solutions work in unison with other systems, extending the benefits of technology beyond security and into other city operations. Whilst this transformation has yet to become a widespread the next crucial transition—from smart city to cognitive city—is already appearing...
Axis Communications, a provider of network video, introduces its new AXIS D2050-VE Network Radar Detector at ASIS International. Radar technology is used for accurate and reliable area detection of moving objects in different light and weather conditions. The technology is a nice complement to Axis cameras with video motion detection, like PTZ cameras, and is designed to integrate with Axis video management systems (VMS). Additionally, the AXIS D2050-VE Network Radar Detector was named a recipie...
AB405 is designed for ENG teams and for video assist where link stability cannot be compromised ABonAir, the provider of wireless microwave link solutions for professional cameras that holds the industry record of 7msec video delay, reveals at NAB 2017 its new system - the AB405. This new wireless video system enables camera teams to wirelessly transmit video directly from cameras to media centres or OB vans. AB405 is designed for ENG teams and for video assist where link sta...
TRI-ED will use ballgames to provide customers with training, product demos and networking Baseball season is upon us, and with it comes the announcement of TRI-ED's 2016 Stadium Tour training programme and schedule. TRI-ED and its supplier partners welcome customers to take part in a free day of training and product demos, an expo, and a great night of networking at the ballgame. Following the hugely successful 2015 Stadium Tour programme, the 2016 lineup shapes up like this: June 21st: Houston, Texas (Astros vs. Angels) July 21st: Boston, Massachusetts (Red Sox vs. White Sox) August 2nd: New York, New York (Mets vs. Yankees) August 16th: Chicago, Illinois (Cubs vs. Brewers) August 30th: Anaheim, California (Angels vs. Reds) September 29th: Atlanta, Georgia (Braves vs. Phillies) A unique training opportunity for customers "TRI-ED is unwavering in its commitment to provide customers with unparalleled training opportunities to help them stay competitive and technically savvy," says James Rothstein, TRI-ED’s Senior Vice President - Global Security Marketing. "Our 2015 Stadium Tour programme was highly successful and provided our customers with invaluable trainings and networking opportunities," he adds. "We are very pleased to announce our upcoming schedule of 2016 Tours," he adds. TRI-ED, an Anixter Company, provides state-of-the-art solutions from the industry’s leading manufacturers of IP video, CCTV, access control, fire, intrusion, sound, communications, structured cabling, and home automation products. With over 65 locations across the U.S. and Canada, TRI-ED offers personal customer service, technical systems support, flexible credit terms, next day shipping, ongoing training programs and the industry's richest rewards programme.
Lenel is there for the 17th consecutive year helping to protect players, coaches, officials and fans As 16 teams from around the world converge for the 69th annual Little League World Series, Lenel, a leading provider in advanced security systems, is there for the 17th consecutive year helping to protect players, coaches, officials and fans. Lenel is part of UTC Building & Industrial Systems, a unit of United Technologies Corp. Annual participation Each year, Lenel contributes its technology, supplies, service and expertise to help protect attendees of the 10-day event, which culminates this year with the world championship game on Aug. 30. James Ferguson, director of security for Little League International, said Lenel’s annual participation is important to his department as it works to ensure the tournament’s safe conduct. “The time, talent and resources provided by Lenel have made them a long-term and valued partner of the Little League World Series,” Ferguson said. “With the latest electronic security technology available to us, we know we are doing all we can to ensure the safety of the players, coaches, spectators and volunteers who make this an exciting global event.” Ron Virden, general manager, electronic access control solutions at UTC Building & Industrial Systems, said Lenel is deeply committed to the youth baseball organisation, which now involves more than 2.6 million children in more than 75 countries. “The Little League World Series is an iconic summer event and it’s our privilege to help provide a safer and more secure environment for all involved,” Virden said. “Each year we ensure that Little League Baseball has the latest updates of our industry-leading OnGuard® integrated security platform and other integrated security products.” Remote monitoring with Prism New this year, Lenel is piloting the latest version of its Prism® open IP video management system in the tournament command center. This new version features Prism Mobile, enabling security guards in the field to remotely monitor surveillance cameras throughout the complex. Prism’s embedded Video Matrix feature allows Little League security to share video with local first responders. Upon arrival at the Little League complex, each player is enrolled in the OnGuard system and receives a photo identification badge to wear throughout the series. The badges allow players to access areas throughout the Creighton J. Hale International Grove, where they live, eat and relax between games. Visual verification and identification The OnGuard system also links with the complex’s video surveillance, allowing video verification of people accessing selected areas. When a person presents a badge to a card reader, live video is displayed along with the cardholder’s database photo. This enables security personnel to visually verify the person’s identity. In addition to identity verification and safeguarding children, the OnGuard platform is safeguarding many other activities, including: Locating lost children – the OnGuard system’s video analytics can help spot children that may have wandered away from The Grove or spectator areas. Evacuations — the system provides a roll call ensuring that all cardholders are accounted for. Averting threats and locating lost articles — OnGuard’s intelligent video algorithms can help locate lost articles, detect suspicious packages left unattended, vehicles in forbidden areas and other out-of-the-ordinary activity. Medical intervention — Sick or injured individuals can be quickly located so that medical attention can be provided.
Conference agenda covers fastest growing product segments and vertical applications All-over-IP Expo 2015 is pleased to announce the agenda for Intelligent Video 2.0/Machine Vision Conference, sponsored by Basler AG. In 2015, the East European and Russian video surveillance equipment market is worth a combined $595.1m. Russia accounts for approximately $300m. The global market for machine vision cameras has exceeded $4b; optics/lighting/frame grabbers for machine vision solutions have reached $5b. The fastest growing products The overall video surveillance market has tipped in favour of network equipment (by supplier revenues), despite the large focus on analogue equipment that exists in many regions. There has been rapid growth in demand for 180/360-degree and speed dome PTZ cameras, high-definition video surveillance solution, thermal imaging cameras, all-in-one IP cameras, video analytics servers, entry-level and mid-level HNVRs and NVRs, open platforms for VMS, HD-over-coax as a low-cost replacement for regular analogue systems. New developments in CMOS imagers, smart cameras, LED lighting, high-speed interfaces are currently making the most impact on machine vision. Top vertical markets City surveillance and crowded places including industrial facilities, subways, airports, railways, sports venues, shopping centres, cinemas, theatres and commercial centres. The demand for more advanced surveillance solutions is on the rise before the 2018 FIFA World Cup kicks off in Russia. Transportation applications have moved to machine vision's mainstream. Intelligent transportation systems are soon to be rolled out across Russia, the market is estimated to reach 500b euro. Industrial cameras also deliver a new value to video surveillance applications. Audience and agenda For the 6th time this year, Intelligent Video 2.0/Machine Vision Conference brings together 100 pre-qualified professionals who sell, install or use intelligent video surveillance and machine vision solutions in Russia. The conference agenda covers the fastest growing product segments and vertical applications that ensure targeted brand awareness for global vendors. Media coverage All-over-IP Expo 2015 partners with 58 global and local media to maximise exposure for Identity Management and Access Control Conference speakers and brands, conveying their message, expertise and technology. Among the conference media partners are CCTViNFO.COM, SecurityMediaPublishing, SecurityWorldHotel.com, and SourceSecurity.com. Local awareness is supported by industry leading publications including Security&Safety Magazine, Security Director Magazine, Algorithm of Security Magazine, and online media including ComNews, Ohrana.ru, Security Bridge.com. All-over-IP Expo 2015 is a networking platform for global IT, surveillance and security vendors, key local customers and sales partners where they share knowledge and exchange ideas that are financially rewarding for business. All-over-IP Expo brings together major brands to ensure the best marketplace for the latest technology and innovation, and to lead customers to the Next Big Thing. Primary Sponsor: ITV | AxxonSoft – a leading software developer that combines IP-based physical security management, intelligent video surveillance, and an enterprise-wide platform. Education Sponsor: Milestone Systems – a global industry leader in open platform IP video management software. 8th Annual International ALL-OVER-IP EXPO 2015 November 18–19, 2015 Russia, Moscow, Sokolniki Expo
SICNT has introduced a smoked glass CCTV camera series – BERT 86 series, to monitor every second of valuables. This affordable and user friendly series allows to change all image parameters across the OSD control at once. SICNT “BERT 86” stylish chic white smoked glass camera comes with 48 pieces infrared LEDs and is equipped with a high precision 9-22mm varifocal lens. SICNT “BERT” stylish camera series come in different handy designs to surveillance areas including sports centres, residential, supermarkets, retail shops and shopping malls. For a style lover, or purely a surveillance camera wholesaler or just looking around for an affordable stylish high resolution camera, SICNT “BERT” stylish cameras provides with the best choice in terms of functions, style and price tag.
Vidsys will be demonstrating its PSIM software with technology partner Barco VidSys, a leading provider of Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) software, recently announced details of its participation at the 2013 National Sports Safety and Security Conference and Exhibition, taking place July 16 – 18 at the Walt Disney World Dolphin in Orlando, FL. This year marks the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security’s (NCS4) fourth annual conference and is expected to attract top professionals in the sports safety and security industry from across the country. To educate attendees on how PSIM software can safeguard their organisation’s spectators, VidSys Founder James Chong will hold discussions focused on ways the technology can create situational awareness in sports stadiums, arenas and other public areas. Who: James Chong, founder, CTO and SVP of Strategic Innovation, VidSys What: Top professionals in the sports safety and security industry will have the opportunity to participate in a roundtable discussion with Chong on how PSIM software can help to identify, analyze, verify and resolve situations faster and more efficiently. In the session titled, “How to Create Situational Awareness with PSIM Software,” participants will learn about how the software has been used to manage potential security and safety threats around the world, while also examining how this technology could help address the security and safety challenges they currently face. When: Thursday, July 18, 2013, 4 sessions between 12:00 p.m. – 2:15 p.m. Where: Walt Disney World Dolphin, Orlando, FL; Pacific C In addition to the roundtable discussion, VidSys will be demonstrating its PSIM software with technology partner Barco, a global leader in networked visualisation and collaboration solutions. Barco’s LCD video wall with TransForm N networked controller will display the integration of the VidSys PSIM software and provide a platform for showcasing the benefits of the combined technologies in regards to enhancing situational awareness and fast decision-making. Conference attendees can visit VidSys and Barco on the exhibition floor (booth #522) Tuesday, July 16 – Wednesday, July 17.
ADT has signed a sponsorship agreement, which recognises the company as the exclusive security provider of FAU athletics The Florida Atlantic University athletics department recently received a gift of $500,000 for its on-campus stadium from Boca Raton-based ADT. In appreciation, a large clock featuring the company’s iconic blue logo will be mounted on the exterior of FAU Stadium, which welcomes thousands of guests at football games and other events throughout the year. “I would like to express my sincere appreciation to ADT for this gift,” said FAU President Mary Jane Saunders. “We are proud to display the ADT clock at our stadium, where it will serve as a constant reminder of the company’s generous contribution to FAU.” The ADT clock, an emblem of the company’s support of its hometown university, was originally installed at Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox, during the famed ballpark’s 99th anniversary year. A ceremony to celebrate the clock’s new location at FAU Stadium will take place on Saturday, December 1 at 2 p.m., prior to the FAU vs. University of Louisiana at Lafayette football game. ADT Vice President of Consumer Marketing Lewis Long will present Saunders with a check on the field during halftime. “We are proud to have such a famous piece of ADT history in one of the newest college football stadiums in the country,” said ADT Chief Marketing and Customer Relations Officer Tony Wells. “Contributing to the communities where we live and work is important to all of us at ADT. We look forward to a long and successful relationship with FAU as we expand our presence in Boca Raton.” ADT also has signed a sponsorship agreement, which recognises the company as the exclusive security provider of FAU athletics. As part of the sponsorship, the ADT logo will be featured on all football coaches’ headsets. In addition, FAU and ADT will collaborate on an internship program for student athletes and on other academic activities at FAU. The ADT Corporation recently became a public company trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “ADT.” Founded in 1874, ADT is one of the most well-known and trusted brands in the security industry, with 6.4 million customers. To date, FAU has secured more than 30 named sponsorships for the stadium. The University is offering naming rights for more than 30 additional venues in and around the stadium to help fund the $70 million project. The 29,419-seat open-air stadium, completed in 2011, features 6,000 premium seats, including 24 suites, 26 loge boxes, 1,000 premier club seats and 4,000 priority club seats, and the latest, state-of-the-art amenities. For more information about FAU Stadium, visit www.fausports.com.
Real-time search analytics addresses one of the most important control room tasks - locating a person of interest If you have been to any of the many security industry tradeshows this year you will undoubtedly have seen and heard the phrase ‘next generation video analytics’. Is it just a catchy marketing phrase or is there more substance behind it? Video analytics as a technology has been with us for many years, but there has always been an air of confusion and mystery around it, in large part created by Hollywood movies, where every camera is connected, an operator can search the network and locate the villain in a matter of seconds. In many ways, I am pleased to say that in many respects fact has caught up with fiction, with the newest video analytics solutions that are now on the market focusing on search and specifically real-time search. These solutions have been tried, tested and proven to help reduce search time from hours to minutes and even seconds. Real-time search analytics Real-time search analytics addresses one of the most important control room tasks - locating a person of interest. Put simply, by reducing the search time you significantly improve the chances of a favourable outcome. Whether it is working in real-time to reunite a lost child with their parents, aiding in the apprehension of a terror suspect, or working with the authorities following a major incident, every second counts. Knowing where a person of interest is at the current moment is vital, but in certain situations you may also want to know when and where they entered the estate However, the technology goes one-step further than pinpointing where on the CCTV network that person currently is. Yes, knowing where a person of interest is at the current moment is vital, but in certain situations you may also want to know when and where they entered the estate, the precise route they took, who they were with and what they did before arriving at their current location. FAQ of real-time search analytics With the introduction of any new technology there will always be some confusion around what it is, what it can do and whether you have the infrastructure in place to consider deploying it. With that in mind here are the top ten questions I have been asked many times about real-time search analytics… Who can I search for? Any person of interest What is the search based on? Full body image, textures, colours and unique characteristics What can I use as a reference? Upload photo, video image or human composite Does it require mega-pixel cameras? Suspect Search is camera type agnostic. Images need to be in colour CIF-Full HD resolution and a frame rate of QRT or higher How does it help me reduce my search time? It filters out 95% of irrelevant images How can I learn the suspect’s locations and movements? The suspect’s route is displayed on a map What is the recommended environment? The technology can be used indoor or outdoor Does it work in real-time? Yes, real-time search can be initiated in seconds What are the common use cases? Intruder search, lost child, unattended bag owner, locating a witness Where is the technology currently in use? Transport hubs, airports, city centres, hospitals, government facilities and sporting events Next-generation video analytics is very much in the here and now Practical application So, how can it be used in day-to-day security operations? To best explain how it works in practice here is an example… It is a Saturday afternoon and a family are attending a sporting event. The stadium holds 60,000 people and the concourses surrounding the entry gates are getting very crowded, with 30 minutes before the match is due to start. The family queue to go through the turnstiles and upon entering the stadium they soon get separated from their six-year-old son. Panicked, they ask the nearest steward for help, who arranges for an announcement to be made over the public-address system and, also notifies the control room. The steward gives the control room operator a description of the young boy (short blonde hair, a light blue jacket and a small yellow backpack). He quickly enters this information in to the system by creating a human composite (otherwise known as an avatar) and in less than five seconds he is looking at a series of images where a person matching the description appeared on a surveillance camera. The rapid speed of the search is made possible because the system is capturing, indexing and storing data in real-time, from every camera located in and around the stadium complex. The rapid speed of the search is made possible because the system is capturing, indexing and storing data in real-time Upon confirming that it is the boy in question the operator selects the camera feed of his last known location and the real-time feed shows him clearly at concession stands looking distressed. The nearest steward is notified and he waits with the boy until he is reunited with his parents. All of the information relating to this incident and others is logged both for training and to help the stadium staff make improvements to reduce the likelihood of incidents recurring. This is a common scenario at a sporting event or shopping complex, but the same process can be applied to estates with hundreds or thousands of cameras across single or multiple sites, such as a sea or airport transportation hub or medical facility. What is more, the sports stadium in this example did not require any expensive camera upgrades in order to deploy real-time search analytics, as it worked with the infrastructure already in place. Next-generation video analytics at present Next-generation video analytics is very much in the here and now - in fact it is in real-time! What is more, it isn’t just for handling rare incidents but also daily occurrences that can absorb a lot of the control room operators’ time, and I make the point again that time is the number one critical factor when handling any incident. The movie-makers of tomorrow are going to have to up their game in a big way, if they want to impress or maybe even inspire the security industry.
A force of 85,000 police and military will patrol the Olympic grounds and environs to provide security A week before the Rio Olympics were slated to begin, Brazil fired the private security firm assigned to hire personnel to screen people entering the various Olympic venues located around Rio De Janeiro. The security plan called for 3,400 screeners. The security firm had only found 500. What happened? Today, prospective security officers must undergo background checks that do not raise red flags. Observers noted that unsatisfactory background checks and drug tests probably explain why it has been so difficult to find and hire the large numbers of security people needed in the short period of time allotted. That problem aside, a force of 85,000 police and military will patrol the Olympic grounds and environs to provide security. “Security officers and soldiers have different ways of thinking,” says Ron Lander, a principal with Norco, California-based Ultrasafe Security Specialists. “Soldiers may be more aggressive than security officers. That may be appropriate for an event like the Rio Olympics.” “Then again, security officers are trained to de-escalate aggressive behavior and calm unruly customers so that everyone walks away with a handshake,” says Lander. “The army may not have had that kind of training.” Olympic security technology Olympic size events make liberal use of technology. The Olympic grounds in Rio have surveillance cameras as well as access control points. In addition, there are cameras connected to facial recognition systems. “Facial recognition is getting better and better,” says Lander. “Camera placement is an important key. There are mullion cameras placed in doors that take head on video that is required for reliable facial recognition. As the camera system clears people, the access control system checks them in.” Checkpoint technologies also include magnetometers that check for metal weapons. It is recommended to create two or more concentric security circles around the perimeter of an event, with attendees passing through access points in the circles Concentric security circles Lander recommends creating two or more concentric security circles around the perimeter of an event. Physical barriers and ropes can create the barriers and funnel people to checkpoints that also provide access. Why concentric circles? “It is a security technique called progressive redundancy,” Lander says. “There could be many steps. In a security facility, for instance, you lock the door, place an alarm at the perimeter, put up a fence and assign a patrolling guard.” So security at an Olympic-style event will feature two concentric security circles around the location of the event. Attendees will pass through access points in the circles. At one checkpoint, they may pass through a magnetometer. At the second, two officers will check purses and bags, while a third officer looks for telltale behavioral recognition signs — individuals who are nervous and sweating, wearing a heavy coat on a warm day or exhibiting behavior that is unusual in some way. Video analytics “Today, some organisations are moving toward video analytics,” Lander says. “There are cameras with analytics software and network video recorders with analytics inside the engine. I prefer analytics on the front end.” Users can program video analytics cameras to look for and alarm on certain kinds of video. For instance, analytics can be set to alarm when people run through a camera’s field of view. Analytics can look for motion in a place and at a time when nothing should be moving. The technology can identify abandoned packages and alert security to investigate. There are a number of security scenarios that video analytics can stand in for human beings, who often get tired. Video analytics don’t tire out and fall asleep. In the end, the role of security technology is to support security officers, and their role is to remain alert, aware and responsive to alarms. Save
Sports security combines manned guarding with access control devices, HD surveillance cameras & analytics in a command centre for a comprehensive security presence Providing security for sporting events and venues has long focused on personnel. Protection came in the form of guards and other personnel who controlled access to the venue and to restricted areas. With an increasing need to provide higher levels of protection in an age of terrorism, venues have turned to traditional access control equipment. Access control equipment for enhanced protection These days the typical large venue is equipped with cameras, and fans are checked by metal detectors at entrances. “You start off with access control to better protect the stadium,” explains Dr. Lou Marciani, Executive Director of National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) at the University of Southern Mississippi. “We’re into magnetometers. We have bollards inside stadiums to protect against vehicle-borne explosives. We’ve got better trained people at gates that know how to use wands or magnetometers.” These tools are combined with enhanced surveillance and integrated systems within a command centre, that are tracking information from sources as diverse as social media and alarms. “We have much-improved pixel capacities and surveillance (cameras) that can tell me if you shaved last night,” he says. “We’re really moving along fast with good solid technology to enhance our capabilities without a doubt.” HD cameras for detailed coverage Technology manufacturers have responded to the needs of sports security with the right kinds of equipment. “High resolution digital cameras and the recording equipment are something that more and more stadiums are relying on,” says Paul Turner, Director of Event Operations & Security for AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, home of the Dallas Cowboys. “You have an array of cameras so that the goal is you’re able to provide coverage on every seat on the bowl. You’re digitally recording all the time so that you can zoom into a particular section and rewind the recording and watch what happens.” Facilities are no longer using just the standard pan-tilt-zoom cameras that scan areas and may or may not record a particular incident. “Now technology is out there where everything is being recorded all the time and you can forensically examine what happened very easily and understand what led to that situation,” explains Turner. “Not every stadium has that, of course, but more and more are making room for that kind of technology.” NCS4 provides information on sports security best practices, as well as rigoroustests and research into the best equipment available to the industry NCS4 providing information for sports security professionals Centres like NCS4 have increasingly become the source for not only best practices, but information on the best equipment available to the industry. “There are hundreds of camera manufacturers out there, and there are hundreds of folks that sell access control stuff,” observes Richard Fenton, Vice President of Corporate Security at Ilitch Holdings Inc., which includes the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings and MLB’s Detroit Tigers. “There are all sorts of products, and they all say they’re the best. So [NCS4 has] a very elaborate lab testing protocol so that vendors can bring their products there. They put it through some rigorous testing; develop white papers on it. For someone like me who’s building a new arena, that’s a great advantage.”
Numbers tell the story of security at the Euro 2016 football tournament which begins on 10th June in France. Here are some of the figures that reflect the robust level of protection and security in place across the country: 90,000 The total count of police, soldiers and private security agents who will be deployed throughout France to ensure the safety of the tournament. 77,000 How many police, gendarmes, and riot-control officers will be deployed. 13,000 The number of private security agents augmenting the police. 10,000 The count of soldiers who are already stationed throughout the host cities as part of ongoing anti-terrorism efforts. They will be given extra responsibility to provide security during the tournament. 1,000 The number of volunteers who will also join the security effort. 2.5 million Projection of how many spectators will attend matches in the tournament. 8 million people are expected to gather in so-called "fan-zones", which willrequire stringent security protocols 24 The number of teams who will compete – an increase from 16. The hotels and training grounds of each team will have a heavy police presence, including 17 officers and two agents from France’s elite special forces at each venue, specialising in counter-terrorism and hostage situations. Albania, Iceland, Northern Ireland, Slovakia and Wales have joined previous participants such as England, France, Spain and Germany. Additional participants are Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and Ukraine. 51 The number of matches in the month-long tournament, continuing into July. In addition to concerns about terrorism, the main threat is hooliganism. Attendees at each match can expect more rigorous body searches and ID checks; large bags will be confiscated permanently. 10 The number of stadiums where matches will be held – in 10 different cities throughout France: Bordeaux, Lens, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Nice, Paris, Saint-Denis, Saint-Étienne, and Toulouse. 8 million How many people will gather in the so-called “fan zones.” These locations present some of the most difficult security challenges since they are public spaces. The strategy is to contain them with an “adapted and stringent security protocol.” 1 million The total number expected to gather over the course of the tournament at the largest “flagship” fan zone, in Paris at the foot of the Eiffel Tower. The public site, designed to accommodate 100,000, would offer a tempting target for terrorists. 125 kg The amount of TNT discovered last month, along with guns and detonators, after a French man was arrested at the Ukrainian border with Poland. The 25-year-old man was allegedly planning 15 attacks during the Euro 2016 football tournament, likely targeting bridges, motorways, a mosque and a synagogue. It was not clear if he planned to target the tournament directly. 130 The number of people who died in Paris at several sites during terrorist attacks last November. The specter of those attacks will be felt throughout Expo 2016, reminding the organisers and security personnel of the need to be perpetually vigilant. In France, additional law-enforcement powers have been granted under a “state of emergency,” which has been in place since the Paris bombings and was recently extended a third time. Measures include tighter border controls and bans on public gatherings. 100 versus 0 “One hundred percent caution does not mean a zero percent risk.” So says French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve, commenting on security efforts aimed at protecting Euro 2016.
Sports security has always played a crucial role in securing major sporting events around the world. Ensuring the safety of millions of spectators who throng the venues during such events is not an easy task. Apart from the usual surveillance cameras and barricades that are put into place, to prevent overcrowding and stampeding, other security measures are also implemented. The Super Bowl is one of the biggest events of the year in the United States, so no wonder it’s also a huge event for security. Endless festivities are the norm, and ticket re-sales for the big National Football League championship game averaged more than $4,500 per ticket. 2 years of planning amongst security & governmental agencies The over-the-top security effort involved dozens of federal, state and local jurisdictions and thousands of law-enforcement and private security personnel. The security plan had been in the works for more than two years, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security designated Super Bowl 50 as a Level 1 Special Event and a possible target of terrorism. It goes to show what can be accomplished security-wise if there is enough time and planning involved – and almost unlimited funds. At the game, soldiers stood guard next to armoured Humvees, machine guns strapped to their chests. Fans faced bag checks, metal detectors and pat-downs. Other extreme elements included hovering helicopters and military fighter jets on standby at Levi’s Stadium, restricted flights around the event, and a no-drone zone near the stadium. Canines sniffed for body-worn bombs. Robots were on hand to detect and disarm any explosives. Advanced security technologies: CCTV, social media monitoring, data analysis In addition to people power, technology played a role, including equipment familiar to our market, such as 600 video cameras positioned around the stadium. Computer analytics were used to target social media, sifting through data for any social media posts involving threats or other questionable content (in a previous year, a social media post had threatened to “shoot the place up.”). Other data came from phone tips, traffic reports and patrolling officers. Overseeing the total effort was a Security Operations Centre in an undisclosed location about six miles from the stadium. Computer processing was at the centre of Super Bowl security, aggregating multiple data streams and providing real-time information on what’s happening in the stadium and surrounding areas, all displayed on a big digital map. All in all, Super Bowl 50 was a great testament to our market’s expanding technology capabilities, and how those technologies interface with and/or complement other elements of the security “big picture” – from aircraft to robots to bomb-sniffing dogs. It’s reassuring that these capabilities exist, and looking back, it’s great that Super Bowl 50 came off without a hitch. It helped that the Super Bowl is a predictable event that happens with plenty of prior notice, and with a profile so high that the cost of protecting it is almost irrelevant. A successful security strategy Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos were the big winners at this year’s Super Bowl, but anytime we can make it through a big event without a terrorist attack or other significant security mishap, we are all winners. Too often, current events are sad and require us to look back and question what went wrong with security. In this case, all the news is good, and we can acknowledge what went right. It’s unfortunate that we can’t take such things for granted, but gratifying that we have the tools, resources and will to keep a big event safe. They were all on full display at Super Bowl 50.
Check out our recent interview with Scott Schafer at IFSEC 2015 hereScott Schafer of Arecont Vision is outspoken about the limitations of standard resolution/VGA video cameras. The megapixel camera company’s Executive Vice President says standard resolution and analogue video cameras are the “most toxic asset” at end user companies because they produce the least value for the money. Megapixel video cameras, like those made by Arecont Vision, are much more cost-effective, says Schafer, citing “cost-per-pixel” calculations that support the claim. He says Arecont Vision has sold “probably nearly 3 trillion pixels by now.” Eliminating manufacturing costs I had an opportunity recently to tour Arecont Vision’s Glendale, California facilities. They were a pioneer in the use of CMOS sensors for video surveillance and an early adopter of H.264 video compression to lower bandwidth and video storage needs. Miniaturisation of electronics has enabled Arecont Vision to eliminate much of its manufacturing costs – and to assemble its cameras in a Glendale office building. The labour component of each camera is small – the parts go together fairly easily. Circuit boards used inside the cameras are assembled in another nearby facility in the Los Angeles area. Smaller electronics allow some cameras to operate using one circuit board instead of three, and the cameras now come in smaller form factors that reflect the change. Microdomes and other smaller camera formats provide the same functionality in smaller designs. Components such as lenses and day/night switchers come pre-assembled. Camera housings are imported. Miniaturisation of electronics has enabled Arecont Vision to eliminate much of its manufacturing costs – and to assemble its cameras in a Glendale office building Assembling its products in the United States avoids overseas shipping costs and minimum order quantities. More manufacturing flexibility enables Arecont Vision to build its cameras almost to order. If a big order comes in, the manufacturing operation can gear up on short notice to fill the order without interfering with day-to-day workflow. Competing with the best in security industry Arecont Vision cameras that are “Made in the USA” compete successfully worldwide – even in China, the centre of manufacturing for the latest wave of lower-cost cameras. Throughout Beijing, a city-wide surveillance system uses 4,000 Arecont Vision 5-megapixel cameras to capture license plate numbers in multiple lanes of traffic, to enforce red lights, and to watch for jaywalkers. Twenty of Arecont Vision’s 20-megapixel cameras are installed around historic Tiananmen square. The cameras are designed with backwards compatibility. The same circuit boards are used with multiple generations of a camera, so firmware upgrades can provide more up-to-date features, in effect, ”future-proofing” a customer’s investment. Field-programmable (FPGA) chips are used inside Arecont Vision cameras. The same basic architecture is used throughout the camera line, and firmware upgrades can add new functionality to existing cameras – even those that have already been installed. Arecont Vision’s rapid growth reflects the use of their cameras all over the world in a host of applications “The reason we can do all these things is that we are more like a software company than a hardware company,” says Schafer. “That chip in the middle of that board is field-programmable. It’s a more expensive architecture.” It’s also easy to update firmware remotely. One customer updated 5,000 cameras to accommodate a change in their video management system (VMS), says Schafer. Rapid growth and expansion Arecont Vision’s rapid growth reflects the use of their cameras all over the world in a host of applications, including data centres, retail, banking, universities, healthcare and government – and many Fortune 500 companies. Performance of megapixel cameras excels in big open spaces, whether a large auto dealership, a campus courtyard or a university auditorium. At Met-Life stadium in New Jersey, for example, 75 Arecont Vision 10-megapixel cameras (with really good lenses) can recognise faces in stadium seats 150 meters (about 500 feet) away. Schafer says it would have taken 2,500 standard-definition cameras to do the job. “The customer says unless two identical twins wearing the same outfit get into a fight with each other, he will be able to tell who caused the problem,” Shafer comments. Well aware of increasing competition from total solution providers, Arecont Vision continues to enhance integration of its cameras with video management system providers through their Technology Partner Program. The goal is for each VMS to be able to control every feature of every Arecont Vision camera -- and they’re almost there, says Schafer. Another important goal is to simplify setup. Working to increase integration is Arecont Vision’s MegaLab, an advanced certification and testing environment launched in 2010 at the Glendale headquarters.
New security and surveillance upgrades have been announced at Manchester Arena, with the first phase expected to be complete by mid-autumn. The system upgrade includes the installation of next generation camera technology combined with cutting-edge access control and is set to be rolled out ahead of a number of high-profile events that are being staged at the arena this autumn. Following the installation of the latest state-of-the-art security cameras, developments include super high definition 4K resolution images and enhanced video analytics with appearance search, plus self-learning analytics with presence/absence detection and the ability to detect unusual motion events. Similar effective solutions Reflex systems was chosen by SMG Europe having looked at similar effective solutions designed and installed by them at the award-winning Leeds The new facilities will also see an improvement in data management and delivery, and form part of an expanding security network which enables remote monitoring off-site at venues across the UK. The large-scale upgrade will be implemented by South Yorkshire-based firm Reflex Systems, a security system installer whose previous projects include providing deployable security systems for the G8 Summit, as well as work at off-park venues at the Olympics, Wimbledon, and Wembley Stadium. Reflex Systems will be leading on the Manchester Arena upgrades. The specialist firm was chosen by SMG Europe having looked at similar effective solutions designed and installed by them at the award-winning Leeds first direct Arena and other large capacity public venues. Intelligent video stream Lee Sinnott, senior facilities manager at SMG Europe, said: “The scope of the project was to deliver a powerful scalable end-to-end surveillance solution over an IP network, employing the latest HD/4K cameras, video analytics at the edge and through an intelligent video stream data management system.” Results allow us to actively monitor & effectively manage large crowds in differing light conditions both in real time and forensically “The challenge to find the right surveillance system with state-of-the-art technology that operates in a harsh light environment was realised through a detailed study and product testing with temporary camera deployments during Arena events. The results allow us to actively monitor & effectively manage large crowds in differing light conditions both in real time and forensically, post event. Providing video evidence of the highest quality was an important deliverable on the project.” Public venue applications “The planned installation of an expanded access control solution with system integration into the CCTV was a key part of the project. The electronic access control system will now provide us with the capability to respond to national threat levels and dynamically deploy a range of security measures through a powerful user interface.” John Pye, managing director of Reflex Systems, said: “Some of the technology involved in the upgrades at Manchester Arena is very new in terms of its features, and is a convergence of security with IT and advanced management software.” “We have significant experience in the area of public venue applications, and through our expertise and technology partners we deliver solutions which allow venue owners, whatever scale, to provide safer and more secure environments for everyone.”
Five leading manufacturers specialising in secure technologies have teamed to provide safety and security at the 72nd Annual Little League Baseball World Series (LLBWS) for the players, coaches and fans. For the first time BriefCam and Ruckus Networks, an ARRIS Company are joining Axis Communications, Lenel and Milestone Systems to provide video surveillance systems, access control and network connectivity for the 10-day tournament. The five technology providers have come together to develop a comprehensive security strategy for the 16 Little League Baseball teams and worldwide fans participating in the World Series from August 16-26, 2018, in South Williamsport, Pa. The Little League International officials strive to promote a fun, exciting experience for players and fans, while ensuring the highest level of security during the games. BriefCam’s groundbreaking video content analytics platform detects, tracks, extracts and identifies people, objects, their attributes and behaviour from raw video feedsProviding safety and security to visitors “Each year, hundreds of thousands of people come out to Williamsport to enjoy their time at the Little League Baseball World Series,” said Jim Ferguson, Little League Assistant Director of Risk Management and Safety. “Along with the safety of all of 16 participating teams, our top priority during the Little League Baseball World Series is to provide a safe and secure facility for visitors from all over the world to enjoy. Thanks to these providers, we can continue to offer all of our fans, players, and volunteers a fun and safe location to create lifelong memories and exciting experiences during their visit.” BriefCam, one of the newest contributors, is providing the company’s latest video content analytics platform to this year’s Little League Baseball World Series state-of-the-art security solution. BriefCam’s groundbreaking video content analytics platform detects, tracks, extracts and identifies people, objects, their attributes and behaviour from raw video feeds. By presenting objects that have appeared at different times within the video simultaneously, BriefCam enables security operators to review hours of video in minutes. Comprehensive video surveillance and analytics solution For the LLBWS, this means if children and parents are accidentally separated during the event, the security team will be well equipped to potentially locate and reunite related parties more quickly. Additionally, BriefCam’s solution can be used to optimise operations such as attendee and vehicle traffic flows to ensure a safe and positive guest experience. The company’s video content analytics platform aligns with Axis IP-based digital video surveillance cameras and Milestone’s XProtect video management software for a comprehensive video surveillance, management and analytics solution. The T300s—the Ruckus flagship outdoor APs—ensure top-notch performance for high-definition video over Wi-Fi, enabling every video stream to be captured “As this global event draws families from far and wide, it is important to further enable comprehensive safety, security and operational efficiencies,” said Stephanie Weagle, CMO, BriefCam. “Our technology will be on-hand to support the Little League in their endeavour to extract actionable intelligence from their video surveillance in the event that parents or family members need assistance in finding each other or streamlining operations to ensure that all involved have a great experience.” Top-notch performance for HD video over Wi-Fi Ruckus Networks, the second newest technology contributor, is providing a wireless mesh backhaul to deliver connectivity to both the scoreboards and surveillance cameras. Ruckus is deploying its T300 access points (APs), along with its SmartZone 100 management controller, to ensure seamless connectivity for the outdoor environment. The T300s—the Ruckus flagship outdoor APs—ensure top-notch performance for high-definition video over Wi-Fi, enabling every video stream to be captured. For the LLBWS, this capability allows all the video cameras in the stadium to be constantly streaming, ensuring maximum safety and security at all times. “In a digitally connected world, safety and security are critical elements that need to be part of every network,” said Bart Giordano, Vice President, Worldwide Business Development and Cloud, Ruckus Networks, an ARRIS company. “We are teaming with other companies to bring the most innovative security capabilities to the games so that every family can feel safer onsite. Our robust wireless technologies ensure every video stream is captured from all cameras, at all times, helping make this annual event fun and secure.” The 4K resolution provides four times as much detail as the standard HDTV 1080p resolution, improving the video quality significantly 4K resolution for improved video quality Axis Communications, the market leader in network video, has been a technology provider with Little League for nine years and is providing AXIS Q6128-E PTZ Network Camera, a compact, outdoor-ready PTZ dome, offering 4K resolution at 30 frames per second, 12x optical zoom and autofocus. The 4K resolution provides four times as much detail as the standard HDTV 1080p resolution, improving the video quality significantly. Both of these cameras will be integrated into the scoreboard in Lamade Stadium. "Each year we look forward to evolving the security system by leveraging the newest technology in the industry," said Robert Muehlbauer, Senior Manager, Business Development Partner Ecosystem, Axis Communications, Inc. "The total solution provides a comprehensive system to help keep players and fans safe so they can enjoy America’s favourite pastime, baseball. We are proud to collaborate with all of the companies involved and to continue our work with Little League Baseball.” OnGuard access control platform and XProtect VMS For the 20th consecutive year, Lenel, a provider of advanced security systems, will provide its OnGuard access control platform. Players, coaches, officials, staff and vendors are all enrolled in the system and receive a photo identification badge providing access to predetermined areas. The system is integrated with the Axis surveillance cameras so when someone presents a badge at one of the access card readers, live video and the cardholder’s photo are displayed on a nearby monitor, allowing a guard to authenticate the identification. Technology provider Milestone is providing XProtect Corporate video management software, which is installed along with a Milestone Husky M500A NVR as one of the recording servers Technology provider Milestone is providing XProtect Corporate video management software, which is installed along with a Milestone Husky M500A NVR as one of the recording servers. The XProtect Smart Client interface includes advancements in system performance by leveraging the processing power of NVIDIA GPU cards for measurable hardware acceleration, enabling more concurrent High Definition or Ultra HD video streams on high-resolution monitors. Easy access to video The LLBWS is also using the XProtect Smart Wall for viewing and sending pertinent video to monitors around the facilities, including a mobile command centre. BriefCam is embedded in the XProtect Smart Client with a dedicated screen tab for easy access to search hours of video in just minutes. “It’s truly inspiring to see the open platform community of partners coming together for this great international family event, ensuring safety through ongoing technology innovations,” said Jeremy Scott, Strategic Alliances Manager, Americas, Milestone Systems. “Every year brings new winners - on the field, in the stands and behind the scenes.”
Every summer, teams from around the world gather in South Williamsport, Pa., for one of baseball’s great classics – the annual Little League Baseball World Series. And for the 20th consecutive year, Lenel provides systems and services to help keep the iconic youth baseball event safe and secure for players, coaches, officials and fans. Lenel is part of UTC Climate, Controls & Security, a unit of United Technologies Corp. Teams from eight international and eight U.S. regions will play in the 10-day tournament, which begins today and ends with the championship game on Aug. 26. Samantha Mahaffey, security manager for Little League International, recognized Lenel’s continued dedication to the annual event for players ages 10 to 12. World-class security technology “We’ve long been able to count on Lenel to provide its world-class security technology to help us make sure these games are safe and secure for all our players, families, and fans,” she said. “It’s been great to work with Lenel over the years and embrace the changes and growth of the Little League Baseball World Series.” Jeff Stanek, general manager, Lenel, said helping to protect the Little League Baseball World Series is an honour for the company and its employees. “Little League and youth baseball are wonderful traditions bringing together young players and fans of all ages from countries around the globe,” he said. “We’re proud to be a part of this annual rite-of-summer event for 20 years, providing our technology and expertise to help make it the fun and safe event it should be.” OnGuard system is integrated with the complex’s video surveillance system and is used to verify people entering restricted areas Authenticate identification The heart of the security system is Lenel’s OnGuard access control platform. Each Little League player is enrolled in the system and receives a photo identification badge that’s worn to provide access to playing fields and to dining and dormitory facilities. Cards are also issued for all coaches, officials, staff and vendors. Each card limits access to only specific pre-determined areas throughout the complex. The OnGuard system is integrated with the complex’s video surveillance system and is used to verify people entering restricted areas. When someone presents a badge at one of the access card readers, live video and the cardholder’s photo are displayed on a nearby monitor, allowing a guard to authenticate the identification. Powerful analytic capabilities The OnGuard integrated security system has powerful analytic capabilities that can also help locate lost children, identify sick or injured people needing assistance and lost or suspicious articles that might pose a threat. The analytics can also help identify vehicles in restricted areas or other out-of-the-ordinary activities. Interlogix, Lenel’s sister company, is providing its UltraSync system to provide intrusion monitoring of the complex’s onsite police station.
Officially inaugurated in October 2017, Ion Oblemenco Stadium in the Romanian city of Craiova is the country’s most modern football arena at a capacity of over 30,000 seats. The futuristic stadium, inspired by the art of Romanian sculptor Constantin Brâncuși, was built from the ground up over the course of two-and-a-half years at a total cost of EUR 51 million. It is home to football club CS Universitatea Craiova and was ranked fourth on the Stadium DB website list for Stadium of the Year 2017. The high-profile project was built with a clear goal: Hosting international and premium league matches not only in the Romanian capital of Bucharest, but also in the city on the river Jiu. For this reason, the municipality of Craiova required a stadium security solution on par with stringent guidelines – according to the year 2020 European football championship standards – to guarantee safety during mass events. Working closely with the on-site team, Bosch experts installed a fire and safety solution composed of four fire panels and 1,500 detectors Fire and safety solution Looking for a trusted vendor with sports stadium experience, plus the ability to deliver the majority of necessary equipment as a single point of contact, Craiova officials opted for Bosch. Working closely with the on-site team, Bosch experts installed a fire and safety solution composed of four fire panels and 1,500 detectors. The stadium also received a quality sound system with Electro Voice Pro Sound speakers for music and commentary, Dynacord Promatrix for evacuation, Bosch loudspeakers for interior sound, as well as a conference and interpretation system for the pressroom. However, the real “kicker” of the football stadium installation is the comprehensive video security solution: Ion Oblemenco Stadium boasts a fully integrated Bosch video security system including 211 cameras, centrally managed on a single platform through an enterprise edition of the Bosch Video Management System (BVMS). Smart video surveillance system The networked cameras serve a wide range of functions at entry and exit points and areas surrounding the stadium: On the perimeter, 115 robust DINION IP bullet 5000 cameras watch central avenues leading to the stadium, while 86 discrete FLEXIDOME IP 5000 cameras monitor visitors. For added security, eight AUTODOME IP 7000 cameras – two on the stadium outside, six inside – safeguard the surroundings with on-board Intelligent Video Analytics. Intelligent Video Analytics (IVA) allows for “smart” video surveillance functions. For instance, Intelligent Tracking automatically tracks moving objects based on predefined alarm rules. Besides automatic tracking of objects of interest once certain predefine rules, like loitering, security operators in Craiova can also manually track groups of football fans or follow specific individuals. The recording units support forensic search enabling security operators to quickly retrieve the relevant video data from hours of stored video Video streams of all 211 cameras are monitored in a central security room, manned by operator personnel and members of Romania’s police during matches. Video data is safely stored on two Bosch DIVAR IP 7000 network video recording units with a total of 256 Terabyte storage capacity. The recorders feature Video Recording Manager (VRM) software to increase reliability and reduce storage volumes and costs, by automatically balancing the video stream load to the free available storage devices. Also, the recording units support forensic search enabling security operators to quickly retrieve the relevant video data from hours of stored video to deliver irrefutable evidence. Easy-to-use security solutions Craiova officials are satisfied with the easy-to-use and cost-efficient solution. Because Bosch products fulfilled international guidelines, the stadium is now fully certified to host matches of the First Romanian Football League, European league matches, Champions League and national team matches. As the first stadium in Romania constructed in line with guidelines for the 2020 European football championship series, Ion Oblemenco Stadium serves as a model for future stadium projects planned to be built for the 2020 tournament and beyond.
Russia selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 World Cup, and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg, and Samara. Security will be a big talking point across the competition, which takes place between June 14 and July 15 at 12 stadiums located in the 11 mentioned above cities across Russia. Two of the stadiums are in the Russian capital. So, how does a host city or country maximise safety and security at a major international sports tournament? The safety success at recent sports meetings can be no excuse for complacency. Like other current hosts, the Russian government introduced extra security measures by presidential decree last May. They aimed to control movement in and around the venues, and they were successfully trialed at last year's Confederations Cup. The security measures include a long list of restrictions: on the sale of weapons and dangerous chemicals, as well as on selling and drinking alcohol. Security consultants, installers, and manufacturers must work with police and arena managers to create strategies that will protect fans, competitors, and staffProtecting fans and staff For a two-month period, all demonstrations and public events in World Cup cities that are not football-related must be authorised not only by the local authorities and police as usual – but also by the Russian secret service, the FSB. In host cities, there will be increased checks at train stations, airports and in the metro. Security consultants, installers, and manufacturers must work with police and arena managers to create strategies that will continue to protect fans, competitors, and staff. A 'spectacular' at a sports event is among the most feared (and expected) threats among the security community. Using facial recognition to identify criminals South Wales Police conducted an exercise in June 2016 that could assist Russian authorities. Aware that Cardiff had an outstanding network of IP cameras both at the Principality Stadium and the city railway station, police used facial recognition on soccer fans during the Champions League Final. Camera feeds were of a resolution that more than met the needs of facial recognition to compare facial close-ups with a database of 500,000 custody images assembled from police forces across Europe. It was not a condition of entry to the stadium for a spectator to present his/her face to the camera but there was dedicated video surveillance at turnstiles. In addition to the 71,000 spectators, a further 100,000 people visited Cardiff on the day. The operation was directed at known or suspected criminals including terrorists as it was at possible hooliganism. RFID wristbands eliminates violence among fans RFID ticketing minimises wait-times while queuing at turnstiles Developments in RFID have seen the introduction of single-use RFID wristbands at sports venues. These have significant benefits in that they make ticket forgery near impossible. Should imitation ever occur and two spectators with the same seat allocation arrive at the ground, the duplication will create an alert. This eliminates the scenario of violence ensuing when fans arrive at seats for which they have paid a premium price to find that they are already occupied. RFID ticketing also minimises wait-times while queuing at turnstiles. Talk to any stadium security officer, and they will tell you that this type of delay is the most dangerous flashpoint regarding spectator behaviour and the most likely factor to precipitate crushing incidents. Technology used at Ryder Cup 2014 RFID of this kind also tells stadium managers if there has been an expectedly high influx of spectators into a part of the ground during a short time interval and whether stewards should be redeployed. RFID can be hierarchical and distinguish between staff, spectators, dignitaries, officials and even competitors. Over 100,000 RFID wristbands were used during the Ryder Cup in 2014 at Gleneagles, Scotland. It is likely that golf organisers will use the technology again, with the Ryder Cup being the one other preeminent sports event scheduled for 2018. An additional benefit of using RFID wristbands as tickets is that if a child is separated from their parents, they need only report to a steward or police officer and it is a simple matter to take them to their assigned seat. Multi-faceted video analytics In the event of large-scale ticket fraud and no safeguards through RFID, people-counting will generate an alarm as soon as occupancy levels are a cause for concern Improvements in people-counting algorithms mean that police and officials can now monitor crowd movement at the approach to stadiums and on concourses with precision. The technology was initially hampered by an inability to count people if they were bunched together or holding hands but accuracy now approaches 99 percent. If people-counting suggests that reasonable queue time (even with advances such as RFID) is approaching a dangerous level, it is possible for stadium supervisors to corral spectators at an early stage causing minimal inconvenience and stress. In the event of large-scale ticket fraud and no safeguards through RFID, people-counting will generate an alarm as soon as occupancy levels are a cause for concern. This technique can be used both on a whole venue and in specific seating areas. It is also useful at city railway stations on match days to warn the stadium that a sudden influx of spectators is likely. People-counting can be used during an emergency evacuation to give officials an overview of egress and updates on problem areas. Video management systems to provide alerts A premium VMS using open architecture is vital in the command centre of a massive stadium. For the duration of an international game or essential league fixture, a stadium control room should be regarded as a mission-critical environment. Security staff will receive numerous alerts before and during the game with the alarms ranging from minor disturbances to false positives. It should be remembered that for every incidence of video surveillance making the control room aware of antisocial behaviour there will be at least one useful or beneficial scenario. Speed PTZ dome cameras now offer exceptional zoom levels that enable operators to hurry from overviews to specific areas and activity of interest A common occurrence is a conscientious camera operator spotting a spectator experiencing medical difficulties and dispatching a steward with first aid training. Best-of-breed VMS allows police and stadium managers to exploit advances in camera technology. Speed PTZ dome cameras now offer exceptional zoom levels (both optical and digital) that enable operators to hurry from overviews to specific areas and activity of interest. Megapixel technology is enabling security managers to cover larger areas with fewer cameras which has obvious financial benefits but also simplifies the logistics of VMS and speeds up site familiarisation for new operators. Sports stadiums are early adopters of technology, and it is likely that any significant leisure venue will now be using IP cameras throughout. This makes it possible to export footage promptly to third parties not just for identifying problems but so that other stadiums during a multi-venue tournament can absorb positives from what has gone well.
Hikvision has become an Official Sponsor of Dutch top tier football club Ajax. As part of the agreement, the company is building an innovative showcase in the field of camera technology with the club. Both in the ArenA stadium in Amsterdam and on the club’s training grounds – the ‘Sport Complex of the Future’. Together with the Ajax Performance Team, ground-breaking monitoring of training and soccer matches will be carried out using Hikvision cameras in partnership with software from video analysis experts Game On. This powerful combination will deliver even better analyses, in turn further improving the game. Need for real-time feedback There are various challenges facing performance coaches, like Max Reckers, Ajax’s Performance Technologist. “Firstly there are physical issues, like where to position a camera. There’s not enough space on the midline, and mounting cameras on training ground poles make them too close to get a good view. There’s also the question of manpower, since a camera operator (or operators) would be needed constantly. Existing analysis tools are too time-consuming and their process is not flexible enough. They also don’t provide real-time feedback."To overcome these challenges, a solution was needed that provides a 180 degree view covering the whole playing field To overcome these challenges, a solution was needed that provides a 180 degree view covering the whole playing field. It would also be necessary to be able to track the players accurately as they crisscross the pitch. In order to achieve these things, a camera would need to be placed near the field, in a suitable vantage point, and the system would need to work seamlessly with software to track the players and allows in-match and post-match analysis. Collaboration for effective analysis Performance managers like Reckers can do effective analysis and are able to present interesting findings, a recording facility is vital, and clarity of image is always a plus when dealing with such a fast-paced game with various moving elements! Within Ajax we are always looking for the best solution that provides the best analysis tool. The solution came through collaboration – Hikvision cameras and Game On analysis software. A 24MP PanoVu camera was installed, both in all training pitches at the ‘Sport Complex of the Future’ and the main Ajax stadium in Amsterdam. The cameras were positioned so that the whole pitch could be seen – possible due to the panoramic nature of the camera. These cameras also provide very clear images – with four lenses of 6MP each, making a total of 24MP – one of the highest definition PanoVu cameras in the industry. The cameras have a frame per second rate of 30, meaning that nothing will be missed.Game On’s software adds a ‘virtual PTZ’ function which allows the software to zoom into specific players and track them on the field Detailed pitch view The normal image from a PanoVu camera is slightly bent – or ‘warped’ - so specialised software from Game On and TNO came into play to stitch the streams from the four lenses together to complete the full detailed view of the entire pitch. This software also 'dewarps' the images, further improving it. Game On’s software adds a ‘virtual PTZ’ function which allows the software to zoom into specific players and track them on the field. The NVR applied to the solution brings full flexibility, allowing operators to save the images. This also means that previous images and recordings can be easily retrieved. The combination of cutting-edge Hikvision technology and the latest software from Game On allows Ajax to track players across the pitch, both in training and matches. This will really make a big difference to the way Ajax sees its games, and advises its players to become even more competitive – hopefully with the knock-on effect of making on of the most popular spectator sports become even more exciting. Simplifying analysis Reckers added: “We are amazed by the Hikvision technologies which we recently have implemented at our training ground and stadium. The PanoVu camera is opening an entirely new world for us in the world of Performance Analysis. Being able to capture the full pitch at high resolution is simplifying our analysis process so much. Being able to provide real-time feedback to coaches and players empowers us even more.” Derek Yang, President of Hikvision Europe, says: “This is an interesting project for us because it shows a whole new application for our technologies. Working with Ajax, TNO and Game On has been a revelation, and we’re thrilled that Hikvision’s cameras could play such a central part in this sports solution. We are now looking to the future and are planning to use the cameras to detect goals and to predict the best way to pass the ball.”
Round table discussion
A major benefit of technology innovation is more application opportunities. As video cameras become better and more versatile, new uses are emerging that extend the benefits of video surveillance, often outside tried-and-true parameters. Sometimes security camera manufacturers are on the front lines to see new ways video is contributing value to integrators and end user customers. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable participants: What is the most unusual application of surveillance cameras you have seen recently?