London Ambulance Service announced that 529 violent incidents have been reported between April 2020 and January this year. To protect their frontline workers, the Ambulance Service has started to roll out Motorola Solutions VB400 body-worn video solutions to help their frontline workers to deal with assaults and threats. “The health, safety, and wellbeing of our crews are of utmost importance. We want to take every precaution possible to ensure that our frontline people are safe whilst at...
In response to gaps in the short-range air defence radar market, Numerica Corporation (Numerica), a globally renowned company in designing and deploying state-of-the-art defence technology, has announced the development of a new USA-made, 3D radar solution for Counter Unmanned Aircraft Systems (C-UAS) and other short-range defence missions, Spyglass short-range surveillance radar system. Spyglass 3D radar Designed to fill the need for exceptional C-UAS detection and tracking performance, Spygl...
Evolv Technology, a globally renowned provider of artificial intelligence (AI)-based touchless security screening systems, announced the appointment of digital transformation executive Merline Saintil to its Board of Directors. The 20-year technology industry veteran is widely respected for providing world-class innovators and market makers with strategic leadership, insightful guidance and operational expertise to dominate the markets they serve. Saintil has a proven track record of developing...
PSA, one of the world’s largest consortium of professional systems integrators, announced the addition of Dedrone to its Managed Security Service Provider Program (MSSP). Dedrone is a solution provider in the airspace security. “Dedrone provides early warning, identification, location, and mitigation against all drone threats,” said Tim Brooks, PSA’s Vice President of Sales and Vendor Management. “As the market and technology leader in airspace security, Dedrone is...
Sensor solution provider, HENSOLDT is expanding its capacity to cater for the growth in its business. HENSOLDT is investing approximately 30 million euros at its Ulm site and creating an additional 300 jobs for highly skilled staff throughout the entire group this year, having taken on 250 new recruits in 2020. New radar for Eurofighters This investment is linked to strong order growth relating to the development of new radar for the Eurofighter combat aircraft and other projects. “In it...
Motorola Solutions announced the opening of its new, Video Security & Analytics (VS&A) manufacturing facility in Richardson, Texas. The 136,000 square foot building represents the company’s continued investment in North American manufacturing and the expansion of its production and shipping capabilities to further the growth of its video security portfolio which serves customers around the world. “We’re proud to be building upon our commitment to provide advanced video...
Openpath, a provider of renowned touchless access control and security automation for the built environment, has reimagined the ideal digital badge for today’s modern workforce and workplace. As an industry disruptor, Openpath first revolutionised mobile access control by studying user behaviour to add obvious, simple, yet powerful tools that ensure a frictionless user experience while making organisations more secure. Now, Openpath’s new reimagined digital badge gives system administrators new ways to address their company’s security policies and procedures with greater focus, flexibility and features such as: Customised digital badge design tool so the user’s physical ID badge and picture now match their Digital Credential Call or email for help feature to eliminate lock outs “at the door” Single Sign-On App authentication through Okta to ensure security compliance Door auto-detect technology recognises closest door on the home screen Dynamic Status tags can change the user’s work group or vaccination status in real-time Streamlined support options to determine where and how employee questions are answered, either via Openpath or directly to their company’s security operations center (SOC). Touchless access control They are transforming traditional access control into an experience that is modern and seamless “As an enterprise customer of Openpath, we’ve been impressed with their ability to innovate and deliver a product that is both highly secure and that elevates the employee experience. They are transforming traditional access control into an experience that is modern, seamless, and meets the need of the new workplace," said Brooke Lierman, Senior Director of Workplace Technologies at Okta. At LabFellows, which offers remote lab spaces and cloud-based software automation for companies working on vaccine research for COVID-19, Openpath’s remote management, touchless access, and mobile credentials have heightened the security, reduced administrative burdens and improved the overall experience of their smartlab workspaces. Physical keycard “We have so much intellectual property housed inside our laboratories, and a constantly rotating roster of customer tenants. Adding to that are reduced occupancy guidelines and heightened safety concerns due to COVID-19. With all of these challenges, Openpath has been key to the operational success, safety and security of both LabFellows and our HomeLab members,” said Julio de Unamuno IV, LabFellows Founder & CEO. The long-standing legacy of a physical keycard for identification being more secure than a digital keycard is no longer true. Mobile security has advanced, and the security vulnerabilities of a physical keycard, which are easily lost or cloned, still remain. Physical ID badge Furthermore, mobile badging ensures a pervasive, unified safety and security experience across all of an organisation’s company apps, whether on browser or mobile, and for the first time, notifies companies right at the door if there is a cyber security issue, and gives them the appropriate steps to resolve it easily, quickly and efficiently. Many enterprise companies require staff to wear a physical credential for compliance purposes While there will always be a role for the physical ID badge, Openpath has chosen to improve upon it by giving it a digital twin with features that other mobile solutions simply don’t offer, and customised solutions tailored to accommodate a company’s size, scale, and specific security needs. For example, many enterprise companies require staff to wear a physical credential for compliance purposes. Access control system Supplementing that with a digital credential offers a fail-safe in the event the physical badge is damaged or a second form of ID is needed to show an updated photo or other pertinent information, such as vaccination status. “The beauty of the Openpath’s open architecture system is that it allows us to continuously innovate and create new options for companies that weren’t thought to be possible with older technologies,” said Alex Kazerani, CEO and Co-Founder of Openpath. “We have been breaking barriers to mobile access control since day one and today we are so excited to deliver a new digital badge that surpasses the security of a physical badge, plus offers custom features and extensive functionality for system administrators of all types of companies and sizes.”
Hanwha Techwin, a supplier of IP and analogue video surveillance solutions, announces that Kevin Darnell has joined the company as Retail Business Development Manager for the retail sector in North America. In this new role, Darnell will be responsible for helping partners and customers implement surveillance solutions that maximise loss prevention and streamline business operations. Prior to joining Hanwha, Darnell was Director of Asset and Revenue Management, Loss Prevention at Caleres, Inc (Famous Footwear, Allen Edmonds, Naturalizer, and Sam Edelman). Asset protection positions Darnell will focus on the unique security needs of retail organisations Over the last two decades, he has also held senior loss prevention and asset protection positions at some of the nation’s most recognised retail brands including Radio Shack, Dollar General, Bass Pro Shops, Kmart Corporation, Michael’s Stores Inc., and Lowes. As Retail Business Development Manager, Darnell will focus on the unique security needs of retail organisations including specialty, big box, grocery, discount/off-price, home improvement, and warehouse retail stores, as well customers in the restaurant sector including QSR, casual, and fine dining establishments. Video surveillance technology “Throughout his long career in the retail industry, Kevin has always been regarded as a trusted advisor to his peers and co-workers. This consultative and trust-based approach will translate well in his new role at Hanwha.” “Kevin’s practitioner experience building LP budgets and ROI models, as well as using and deploying video surveillance technology in the retail environment fully supports Hanwha’s mission to engage and listen to end users so we can develop the solutions they trust us to build,” said Jordan Rivchun, Leader – Retail & Banking Solutions and Strategy, Hanwha Techwin America.
Sensor solutions provider HENSOLDT is modernising the TRS-3D radars of two K130-class corvettes of the German Navy, as well as an associated shore facility. An order for corresponding electronic components was placed by the Federal Office of Bundeswehr Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support (BAAINBw). The replacement deliveries will take place in the course of this year. Improving automatic identification The TRS-3D is a three-dimensional multimode ship radar for air and sea surveillance, which can correlate the position and movement data of targets with the HENSOLDT identification system MSSR 2000 I and thus improve the automatic identification of ships and aircraft. The TRS-3D is a pioneer in its class with more than 60 radars in service with navies and coastguards worldwide. In addition to K130 corvettes, vessels equipped with it include the US Coast Guard's National Security Cutters, a number of US Navy Littoral Combat Ships, as well as ships of the Finnish Navy and the Norwegian Coast Guard.
BCD International, the global video data infrastructure front-runner, announced the opening of the BCD International Inc. Netherlands Build Centre, located in the southern Netherlands. Building on the unrivalled resources and services made possible by its partnership with Dell EMC, BCD is further strengthening this relationship with the opening of manufacturing facilities in key foreign markets throughout 2021. The strategic proximity of the Netherlands Build Centre to central Europe sets the stage for a superior product and rapid distribution throughout the Europe, Middle East and Africa region. Expanding business offerings Growing business in training, service and support in video surveillance, analytics, computer vision, and artificial intelligence solutions to more customers The BCD Netherlands Centre expands BCD’s offerings, training, service and support in video surveillance, analytics, computer vision, and artificial intelligence solutions to more customers. Expanding BCD’s manufacturing from the U.S. to Europe also reinforces the company’s OEM partnership with Dell by allowing broader reach in assisting local Dell customers and independent security integrators. “As cliché as it sounds, it truly is a win-win for us. Opening the Netherlands Build Centre enables us to quickly deliver our superior surveillance solutions to our mutual customers within the European region, as well as locally support our strong Nordic and UK base of customers,” said Jeff Burgess, Chief Executive Officer of BCD. Surveillance equipment BCD and Dell will continue to pool their strengths in technology effectively through the Netherlands Build Centre to meet mutual customer security needs. This is made possible through BCD’s powerful procurement system that runs through Dell’s EMEA region, which will create high efficiency in surveillance equipment production, distribution and education. “We are enthusiastic about BCD bringing their unique technology into the European marketplace and delivering these high-availability solutions to our customer base. Expanding these capabilities in the region will bring a new level of support and innovation to the region,” said Kyle Dufresne, Dell Technologies – OEM Solutions. Video surveillance solutions BCD focuses on the creation of high-quality video surveillance solutions to suit customer needs As the global market for advanced storage solutions continues to expand, BCD’s focus on creating concentrated regional centres drives the creation of high-quality video surveillance solutions that suit a wide range of customer needs. “Moving our product production into the Netherlands Build Centre gives BCD a technology hub in the region, with localised revenue flow, support, and delivery—all while maintaining our standards of quality and innovation.” Jeff Burgess Chief Executive Officer, BCD International, Inc. Infrastructure and expansion Located in Tilburg, Netherlands, the Netherlands Build Centre is 600 metres (6,450 square feet) in size and is TAPA A and ISO270001 certified for ultimate security. The hub will work in sync with Gary Sykes, BCD’s UK-based Regional Sales Director, and features workspaces for Implementation Engineers and System Engineers. The centre has also been certified in Midrange Storage and Server services, as well as Converged Infrastructure. The Netherlands Build Centre is the second of multiple manufacturing and engineering centres that will be introduced in 2021. Later this month, BCD will also open a centre in Mexico City that will extend security servicing throughout Latin America. This will be followed by the anticipated opening of additional build centres within the APAC region in quarter two, as well as business sales offices in Hong Kong and Singapore.
Dahua Technology, a front-runner video-centric smart IoT solution and service provider, is proud to announce that the Dahua Global Virtual Innovation Centre is now available to its global customers. By demonstrating its latest technologies, products and solutions through an online virtual showroom, the centre can support customers in designing excellent security systems. Due to the drastic impact of COVID-19, people are having difficulties in gaining access and experiencing the development of products and technologies in their field of interest while keeping themselves safe and healthy at the same time. AIoT future Browse the most up-to-date security technologies, products and solutions from the comfort and safety of ones home or office As an innovation-driven company, Dahua Technology stands against the difficulties and challenges brought by the unprecedented pandemic by fully embracing digital transformation. The company launched the Dahua Global Virtual Innovation Centre in order to drive innovation to an AIoT future. No matter where one is, one can simply browse the most up-to-date security technologies, products and solutions from the comfort and safety of ones home or office, and get resources and knowledge that can help one with ones next security project. Benefits that the centre offers Browse the latest technology wherever one is 24/7 Broad range of products and vertical industry solutions on display 360-degree eye-catching product showcases available in VR Download product datasheets, images and other information directly to ones device Additional features With the Dahua Global Virtual Innovation Centre, one can learn about the up-to-date products and solutions of Dahua Technology in an economical and safe manner. Moreover, one can also simply click a button to mark the products that interest one as favourite, as well as send emails to request for more information. With its mission of “Enabling a Safer Society and Smarter Living”, Dahua Technology will continue to focus on “Innovation, Quality, and Service” to serve its partners and customers around the world.
Check Point Software Technologies Ltd., a renowned provider of cyber security solutions globally, has announced the availability of its complete Quantum Spark series of security gateways for small and medium size businesses (SMBs). The range of six gateways sets new standards of protection against the most advanced cyber attacks for SMBs, giving unrivalled ease of deployment and management, and delivering optimum security without needing specialist skills. The 2020 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report showed that 28% of all breach victims were SMBs, with 54% of attempted attacks on SMBs being successful, compared to a 7% success rate at larger companies. 62% of SMBs say they lack the skills to deal with cyber security issues. With the FBI stating that cyber crime reports have quadrupled during the COVID-19 pandemic, SMBs urgently need integrated and automated security to prevent cyber threats from damaging their business. Optimised internet connectivity “Security threats are increasing in frequency and sophistication, but SMBs lack the expertise, manpower and IT budget to adequately address them. They need security solutions that evolve with the threat landscape, are easy to use, and combine communications and security,” said Chris Rodriguez, IDC’s Network Security Research Manager. Quantum Spark is also optimised for delivery by managed service providers as a monthly subscription" “Check Point’s Quantum Spark family of next generation firewalls are specifically designed to protect SMBs from the latest security threats, are easy to manage from the cloud or on the go with a mobile app, and provide optimised internet connectivity including Wi-Fi, fibre, GbE, VDSL and 4G LTE wireless in an “all in one” solution. Quantum Spark is also optimised for delivery by managed service providers as a monthly subscription, so SMBs can be secure regardless of their budget.” Automated threat prevention Check Point’s Quantum Spark Gateways 1500 four-model series is now being expanded with two new models, 1600 and 1800.The full line of gateways allows supporting businesses ranging from one employee all the way to 500. Quantum Spark Gateway users benefit from: Highest levels of security with automated threat prevention: All models include Check Point’s award-winning SandBlast Zero Day Protection with up to 2Gb of threat prevention performance and over 60 security services focused on threat prevention. Automatic set-up in 60 seconds: All models feature zero-touch provisioning, which means they deliver full protection out-of-the-box inside one minute. Flexible connectivity: Quantum Spark Gateways include Gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi and integrated cellular LTE modems, giving users the widest range of connectivity options. Quantum Spark gateways also support multiple internet service providers and performance-based routing, delivering the best bandwidth and quality of service for applications. Easy, intuitive management: Check Point’s WatchTower mobile application enables staff to monitor their security status and quickly mitigate any threats directly from the mobile device. Security can also be managed from any bowser, using a cloud-based portal with intuitive web UI. Complete protection for remote employees and cloud applications: In addition to the network protection Quantum Spark gateways provide, businesses can protect all laptops and PCs against threats such as malware, ransomware and phishing with Check Point endpoint protection, and secure employees’ smartphones with Check Point mobile protection. Email and docs can be protected with Check Point email security. Advanced cyber threats Small businesses are experiencing the same types of advanced, stealthy cyber threats as large enterprises" “Check Point’s Quantum Spark gateways simply do their job of automatically protecting against all types of threat, without needing management attention or manual updates. This gives us peace of mind and enables us to focus on our business,” said Trevor Rowley, Managing Director, Optix Business Management Software. “Small businesses are experiencing the same types of advanced, stealthy cyber threats as large enterprises, but SMBs often don’t have the resources or security knowledge to fully protect themselves against today’s advanced cyber threats,” said Itai Greenberg, VP of Product Management at Check Point Software Technologies. Advanced network protection “The new Quantum Spark gateways give small and medium-size businesses the most advanced protection for their networks and employees’ devices, so they benefit from enterprise-grade automated security, together with easy intuitive management.” For full details and specifications of the six models in the Quantum Spark Gateway range, one can visit the company’s official website. As part of the expansion of the new Quantum Spark gateways, the 910 Security Gateway model is now discontinued and won’t be able to be ordered after July 2021. Check Point’s Quantum Spark Gateways 1500 four-model series and the two new models, 1600 and 1800 are currently available to order.
Urban populations are expanding rapidly around the globe, with an expected growth of 1.56 billion by 2040. As the number of people living and working in cities continues to grow, the ability to keep everyone safe is an increasing challenge. However, technology companies are developing products and solutions with these futuristic cities in mind, as the reality is closer than you may think. Solutions that can help to watch over public places and share data insights with city workers and officials are increasingly enabling smart cities to improve the experience and safety of the people who reside there. Rising scope of 5G, AI, IoT and the Cloud The main foundations that underpin smart cities are 5G, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and the Internet of Things (IoT) and the Cloud. Each is equally important, and together, these technologies enable city officials to gather and analyse more detailed insights than ever before. For public safety in particular, having IoT and cloud systems in place will be one of the biggest factors to improving the quality of life for citizens. Smart cities have come a long way in the last few decades, but to truly make a smart city safe, real-time situational awareness and cross-agency collaboration are key areas which must be developed as a priority. Innovative surveillance cameras with integrated IoT Public places need to be safe, whether that is an open park, shopping centre, or the main roads through towns Public places need to be safe, whether that is an open park, shopping centre, or the main roads through towns. From dangerous drivers to terrorist attacks, petty crime on the streets to high profile bank robberies, innovative surveillance cameras with integrated IoT and cloud technologies can go some way to helping respond quickly to, and in some cases even prevent, the most serious incidents. Many existing safety systems in cities rely on aging and in some places legacy technology, such as video surveillance cameras. Many of these also use on-premises systems rather than utilising the benefits of the cloud. Smart programming to deliver greater insights These issues, though not creating a major problem today, do make it more challenging for governments and councils to update their security. Changing every camera in a city is a huge undertaking, but in turn, doing so would enable all cameras to be connected to the cloud, and provide more detailed information which can be analysed by smart programming to deliver greater insights. The physical technologies that are currently present in most urban areas lack the intelligent connectivity, interoperability and integration interfaces that smart cities need. Adopting digital technologies isn’t a luxury, but a necessity. Smart surveillance systems It enables teams to gather data from multiple sources throughout the city in real-time, and be alerted to incidents as soon as they occur. Increased connectivity and collaboration ensures that all teams that need to be aware of a situation are informed instantly. For example, a smart surveillance system can identify when a road accident has occurred. It can not only alert the nearest ambulance to attend the scene, but also the local police force to dispatch officers. An advanced system that can implement road diversions could also close roads around the incident immediately and divert traffic to other routes, keeping everyone moving and avoiding a build-up of vehicles. This is just one example: without digital systems, analysing patterns of vehicle movements to address congestion issues could be compromised, as would the ability to build real-time crime maps and deploy data analytics which make predictive policing and more effective crowd management possible. Cloud-based technologies Cloud-based technologies provide the interoperability, scalability and automation Cloud-based technologies provide the interoperability, scalability and automation that is needed to overcome the limitations of traditional security systems. Using these, smart cities can develop a fully open systems architecture that delivers interoperation with both local and other remote open systems. The intelligence of cloud systems can not only continue to allow for greater insights as technology develops over time, but it can do so with minimal additional infrastructure investment. Smart surveillance in the real world Mexico City has a population of almost 9 million people, but if you include the whole metropolitan area, this number rises sharply to over 21 million in total, making it one of the largest cities on the planet. Seven years ago, the city first introduced its Safe City initiative, and ever since has been developing newer and smarter ways to keep its citizens safe. In particular, its cloud-based security initiative is making a huge impact. Over the past three years, Mexico City has installed 58,000 new video surveillance cameras throughout the city, in public spaces and on transport, all of which are connected to the City’s C5 (Command, Control, Computers, Communications and Citizen Contact) facility. Smart Cities operations The solution enables officers as well as the general public to upload videos via a mobile app to share information quickly, fixed, body-worn and vehicle cameras can also be integrated to provide exceptional insight into the city’s operations. The cloud-based platform can easily be upgraded to include the latest technology innovations such as licence plate reading, behavioural analysis software, video analytics and facial recognition software, which will all continue to bring down crime rates and boost response times to incidents. The right cloud approach Making the shift to cloud-based systems enables smart cities to eliminate dependence on fibre-optic connectivity and take advantage of a variety of Internet and wireless connectivity options that can significantly reduce application and communication infrastructure costs. Smart cities need to be effective in years to come, not just in the present day, or else officials have missed one of the key aspects of a truly smart city. System designers must build technology foundations now that can be easily adapted in the future to support new infrastructure as it becomes available. Open system architecture An open system architecture will also be vital for smart cities to enhance their operations For example, this could include opting for a true cloud application that can support cloud-managed local devices and automate their management. An open system architecture will also be vital for smart cities to enhance their operations and deliver additional value-add services to citizens as greater capabilities become possible in the years to come. The advances today in cloud and IoT technologies are rapid, and city officials and authorities have more options now to develop their smart cities than ever before and crucially, to use these innovations to improve public safety. New safety features Though implementing these cloud-based systems now requires investment, as new safety features are designed, there will be lower costs and challenges associated with introducing these because the basic infrastructure will already exist. Whether that’s gunshot detection or enabling the sharing of video infrastructure and data across multiple agencies in real time, smart video surveillance on cloud-based systems can bring a wealth of the new opportunities.
The global pandemic has created a working environment filled with uncertainty and, at times, fear, as COVID-19 cases surge yet again and businesses continue to navigate a complex web of infectious disease mitigation protocols and managing the distribution of a potential vaccine. Organisations are operating in an environment where a critical event, posing significant risk to its employees and daily operations, could occur at any moment. Even with a vaccine showing light at the end of a very dark tunnel, the pandemic unfortunately may be far from over, and the communication of accurate public health information to a widely distributed, often remote workforce is vital to keeping employees safe and businesses running. Organisations that plan ahead, invest in an emergency management system and share key updates quickly, reliably and securely, can keep employees safe while ensuring business continuity when it matters most. Taking time to plan and prepare Throughout the pandemic, U.S. offices have gone through alternating stages of reopening and re-closing Throughout the pandemic, U.S. offices have gone through alternating stages of reopening and re-closing. However, whether businesses are operating at a limited or full capacity, medical experts are expecting continuous waves of COVID-19 cases, as community transmission continues to hit record highs. The only way for businesses to keep their employees and customers safe, protect their operations, and retain trust with their key stakeholders during these tumultuous times is to be proactive in nature. Organisations need to put a business resiliency plan in place now that outlines key actions to take if (or when) an issue relating to local spread of the novel coronavirus arises. By having a plan in place and practicing it regularly, organisations can minimise risks and maximise employee safety surrounding critical events, such as suspected or confirmed exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace. Context of emergency management Ensuring the safety of employees (and others within the company’s facilities) needs to be the number one priority for organisations; and in any crisis scenario, a prepared and practiced plan maximises a company’s chances of success. In PwC's 2019 Global Crisis Survey, business leaders across a range of industries shared their experiences, expectations, and top strengths and weaknesses in the context of emergency management. By a wide margin (54% vs. 30%), organisations that had a crisis response plan in place fared better post-crisis than those who didn’t. When it comes to ensuring the wellbeing of staff, businesses need to think through a comprehensive, iterative infectious disease mitigation and operational continuity strategy and practice it as often as possible. Investing in proper technology A vital step in adequate critical event management planning is investing in the proper technology infrastructure For today’s modern organisation, a vital step in adequate critical event management planning is investing in the proper technology infrastructure to streamline the communication of vital information. Organisations should explore risk intelligence, critical communication and incident management software to keep their people safe, informed, and connected during critical events - and, thankfully, decision-makers are starting to take note. The Business Continuity Institute 2020 Emergency Communications Report found that 67% of organisations at least use emergency notification and/or crisis management tools. Reliable risk intelligence system Building upon that trend, a reliable risk intelligence system can anticipate and analyse the potential impact of incidents, such as increases in local cases of COVID-19, send vital updates to a distributed workforce of any size on multiple devices regarding infectious disease mitigation protocols and public health directives, and then help incident response teams virtually collaborate while maintaining compliance standards. Automating as much of this process as possible through technology allows human decision makers to efficiently and effectively focus their time, effort and expertise on what matters most in a crisis situation - implementing sound operational continuity strategies and, more importantly, ensuring employees’ safety and well-being are prioritised and appropriately considered when stress rises. Communicating vital updates This is the cultural component of incident management based on emotional intelligence, empathy, effective employee engagement, and authentic listening that makes or breaks an organisation’s response to challenging situations. Employees must be aware at a moment’s notice to stay away from or exit contaminated areas If employees are exposed in the workplace to a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, employers must be prepared to quickly update staff on vital next steps, as outlined by the CDC and other public health authorities, and arm key functions - such as security operations, HR, facility management, legal and compliance - with the information they need to mitigate potential spread of the virus, including: Closing/cleaning the office: Employees must be aware at a moment’s notice to stay away from or exit contaminated areas. From there, it is critical that businesses communicate clearly with cleaning staff to follow procedure, use the right disinfecting products and sanitise high-touch surfaces. Alerting key groups that may have been exposed: Employers have a duty to rapidly notify workers of potential exposure to COVID-19. Having the proper communication infrastructure in place can streamline contact-tracing as well as the subsequent testing process, and save vital time. Ensuring work-from-home continuity or diverting workflows to alternative physical environments: Every work environment looks different today. Whether an organisation is managing a distributed workforce, full-capacity essential workers or something in between, there needs be a communication system in place to ensure business continuity. Outlining next steps for reopening: After a potential exposure, employees require the proper reassurance that they will be returning to a safe working environment in an organised, thoughtful manner, which is aligned to public health best practices. Whether it is coordinating a limited capacity return to the office or outlining new infectious disease mitigation protocols - such as steps for receiving a vaccine in the coming months - employees must continue to be updated quickly, comprehensively, and often. Incident management technology There is no doubt that organisations will continue to face a myriad of challenges as they navigate business operations during the pandemic into 2021, as the general public awaits the broad deployment of a vaccine. Public and private sector leaders still have months ahead of them before daily operations even begin to resemble “business as usual.” To best prepare for the next chapter of the global pandemic, organisations should outline a plan tailored to infectious disease mitigation protocols; explore augmenting their crisis management policies with risk intelligence, crisis management and incident management technology; and focus employee communications on containing and rapidly resolving events associated with COVID-19 exposure. Keeping employees safe, informed, and connected during critical events are mandatory considerations for leaders as they analyse existential threats to their business in 2021 and beyond.
As the multi-billion-dollar market for artificial-intelligence-based video analytics continues to grow, so does the number of video analytics solution providers. In Q3 of 2018, Stockholm-based consulting company Memoori identified 128 active companies in the supply chain for AI video analytics [i]. This list is far from exhaustive, considering how analytics has been gaining interest and becoming mainstream in 2020, with users expecting more accurate alerts based on object detection instead of motion detection, hardware providers developing more powerful but compact chip sets for deployment, and more startup solution providers carving out their niche in the market. Given so many choices, the question arises as to how a system integrator can evaluate and select the best solution for his customer. Although the criteria vary for each vertical, there are some key metrics to consider across the field: Open platform Ease of use Robustness and reliable performance Versatility Good support and integration Low total cost of ownership 1. Open platform Open platform allows the user to have complete flexibility, avoid being locked into any particular manufacturer, and utilise the best-of-breed solution available in each category. Analytics has been gaining interest and becoming mainstream in 2020 In 2019, an IPVM survey shows that 51% of system integrators always prefer an open platform to an end-to-end solution (i.e., all components including camera, VMS, analytics, etc. provided by one manufacturer), and 24% select open platform or end-to-end depending on customer requirements [ii]. For analytics, as the users commonly have an existing infrastructure, investing in a technology overhaul would be too expensive. An open-platform analytics product, i.e., a camera-agnostic, VMS-agnostic, and computer-server-agnostic product, will add value to the existing infrastructure within a reasonable budget. Open platform also makes it easier and more cost-efficient to upgrade each component when necessary. 2. Ease of use One of the main reasons and goals of applying AI to security is to help the user automate the process of watching hours and hours of surveillance videos, extract useful information and send alerts when necessary. In other words, AI should make it easier for the user to operate the security system. Thus, a good AI video analytics solution must be easy to set up and connect to the existing infrastructure, easy to use on a daily basis, and easy to scale with the expansion of the business. Let us examine each point in more details: Easy to set up: a turn-key, plug-and-play solution helps save time and money. The system integrator can spend a couple of hours instead of days to help the customer set up. In both 2018 and 2020, the most common reason that integrators cited for choosing a solution is that “it just works” [iii][iv]. Easy to use: an intuitive, no-learning-curve user interface allows the customer to make the solution second-nature, maximize its utility and gets the highest return on investment. The best-case scenario is that everyone in the user’s organisation, e.g., every police officer in a city police department, can use the solution on a daily basis, not limited to a technical staff with rigorous training. Easy to scale: the solution must be designed to seamlessly scale in different ways: number of cameras (e.g., from a few to a few thousands); deployment locations (e.g., can we access data in our branch office in another city? how about another country?); types of device and deployment (e.g., body-worn cameras, in-vehicle, control center, cloud). 3. Robustness and reliable performance Traditional VMD (video motion detection) -based analytics have many limitations and false alarms, so AI-based analytics were developed, primarily to identify different objects in the videos with high accuracy. However, such accuracy must be achievable in different real-life environments. The best solution does not let low lighting, snow and rain, spider crawling in front of the cameras, etc., interfere with human intrusion detection or license plate recognition at night. In the case of temperature detection, users should be able to walk by the system at a normal pace without removing the mask to minimise disruption and maximise worker efficiency. A more robust solution means less time and resource spent on false alarms. 4. Versatility A versatile, feature-rich, multi-functionality video analytics is the most effective choice for system integrators in the long term. Not limited to only object detection, AI can be trained to recognise higher levels of details (e.g., faces, age, gender, license plates), track objects (including people and vehicles), and detect certain behaviours (e.g., loitering, theft). In other words, a more versatile analytics solution can recognise more types and behaviors of objects for more use cases. Most users have certain pain points today and are looking for only one or a few solutions. However, as the organisation grows, new situations and requirements may arise, which call for new detection functions in video analytics. The costs and complexity will add up quickly if each solution has only one function. A few examples: An LPR camera may be perfect for the need to record all license plates today, but if the police wants to find a black Toyota Prius with “A23” in the plate number, a solution that can detect the plate number, vehicle make and model will save much more time and effort. Intrusion detection based on the ability to distinguish human from other moving objects (e.g., animals) is only the first step. What if the user needs an alert for people that enter a construction zone without a hard hat and safety vest? The answer is an AI solution that can grow its repertoire. In the current pandemic, business must adopt temperature screening, distancing detection, occupancy detection, and mask detection; a solution that can provide all four analytics in one platform is clearly more useful than four individual solutions, not to mention whether the solution can be repurposed after the pandemic has been resolved. 5. Good support and good integration One of the main reasons that system integrators might select an end-to-end solution instead of an open-platform one is technical support: more responsiveness and less finger-pointing. In terms of responsiveness, good technical support is a part of the ease of use, where the system integrator and the user can rest assured that any question can be answer via email or a phone call to the manufacturer. A more robust solution means less time and resource spent on false alarms In terms of having a one-stop-shop solution to reduce finger-pointing, good support means the manufacturer can provide easy integration to 3rd-party systems, which includes API interface support. One example is access control. Video analytics is a great tool to enhance access security (e.g., face recognition to open doors for employees; LPR for parking management; weapon detection linked to automatic locked-down system), but only 24% of video surveillance systems today are integrated with access control [v]. Two of the main reasons: (1) integration is expensive, and (2) the systems are not compatible. Both hurdles can be overcome if the analytics solution bridges the gap between cameras and access control system via its API. 6. Low total cost of ownership These six criteria help both the system integrator and the end-user save time, money, and effort Cost is always a determining factor, especially in the SMB market [vi]. Customers’ expectations are high, and higher-resolution cameras are decreasing in price and increasing in numbers, which means more data to process than ever. A good analytic software solution is not only capable of many functions, its algorithms are efficient enough to fit more into the same server specs, and it does not require expensive cameras to have good accuracy, thereby increasing cost saving for the entire system. In summary, these six criteria help both the system integrator and the end-user save time, money, and effort and get the most out of video analytics in the long run. A high-performance, versatile, turnkey solution is already a reality with today’s technology, and it will only continue to improve, so there is no reason to settle for less. [i] Memoori, The Global Market for Intelligent Video Analytics 2018 to 2023, 2018 [ii] IPVM, Open vs. End-to-End System: Statistics 2019, November 11, 2019 [iii] John Honovich, IPVM, Favorite Video Analytic Manufacturers 2018, April 2, 2018 [iv] IPVM, Favorite Video Analytic Manufacturers 2020, February 25, 2020 [v] Brian Rhodes, IPVM, Access Control and Video Integration Statistics 2020, October 8, 2020. [vi] Brian Karas, IPVM, Low Cost, Low End Competitors Challenge SMB Surveillance Market, September 1, 2017
Convergint Technologies’ rapid growth has come through a combination of organic growth and acquisitions — they have acquired 35 companies since 2014. Growth has been a focus since day one when the founders started the systems integration company with 10 colleagues in a basement. Today, the diverse company includes more than 5,000 employees globally. As technology has advanced and business practices have evolved, Convergint’s core values and beliefs have guided their path forward. Customer-centric approach Convergint’s culture is a critical aspect of the company, from the executive level to frontline colleagues. “It is essential that the companies we look to acquire and develop partnerships with directly align with our people-first, customer-centric, inclusive culture centered on colleagues and customers,” says Mike Mathes, Executive Vice President, Convergint Technologies. “This approach has allowed us to maintain and grow our number of colleagues across our acquisitions and enables us to continue being our customers’ best service provider.” Integration practices Many practices have to be form-fitted to each individual acquisition A simple but important consideration as Convergint grows through acquisitions is: No two companies are the same. While some integration practices can be standardised across the company, many practices have to be form-fitted to each individual acquisition, says Mathes. “Our objective is not to come in and immediately implement change. We want to build on what has already been successful within the local market and share our learned experiences. There is plenty we can learn from each other and create a much better organisation.” Mathes says that Convergint’s view of a successful acquisition is that 1+1=3. “The end result is always much more impactful than what we anticipated,” he says. “Every acquisition brings with it an experienced leadership team, dedicated and skilled colleagues, vertical market and technological expertise. Most acquisitions are in geographies where we do not already operate, so with every acquisition, we increase our capability to serve our customers much better.” Also, the network of Global Convergint Technology Centres (CTCs) helps expand clientele, and the Convergint Development Centre (CDC) offers new support capabilities allowing acquisitions to grow at a very high rate. Expanding service Are there more acquisitions to come? Mathes says Convergint is always open to further expanding its footprint across the globe, improving its ability to service customers, deepening their technical expertise, and continuing to expand service offerings across the current and new vertical markets. However, the current focus remains on several key factors: service to colleagues, customers, and communities. “While obviously, acquisitions fuel our growth, the addition of these organisations to Convergint has really improved our ability to service clients on a global basis,” says Mathes. Acquiring ICD Security Solutions in Asia, for example, made Convergint a pioneer in that market for U.S.-based multi-national companies. Meeting customers demand “Convergint does not weigh market conditions when making an acquisition decision,” says Mathes. Rather, they are primarily focused on meeting or exceeding their customer’s needs on a local to a global level. They see acquisitions as a potential way to extend their geographic reach so they can be closer to customers. An acquisition might also expand technological or vertical market expertise. “The end goal is for us to enhance our service capabilities by attracting and retaining talented colleagues and leaders to better service our customers,” says Mathes. Enhancing and expanding services Convergint identifies how to leverage the expertise to further enhance and expand current service options “Economies of scale” have not been a consideration. They have never sought to acquire companies and restructure them in the process, for example. Rather, each company brings forth a unique skillset, is carefully vetted by the executive team, and provides purpose in the company's mission and vision for the future.” “Frontline colleagues are Convergint’s most valuable assets,” says Mathes. Rather than restructuring and eliminating skilled, knowledgeable colleagues, Convergint identifies how they can leverage the expertise to further enhance and expand current service options for customers. “Our colleagues and their skill sets are our competitive advantage—they remain an essential element to our success,” says Mathes. Demand for integrator services “We continue to experience a growing demand for innovative solutions across electronic security, fire alarm, and life safety,” says Mathes. “As companies innovate further and rely on technologies such as artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, IoT, and cloud solutions, we expect to see an increased demand for integrator services. Our customers demand a local service provider who is responsive and can meet their needs, which is why Convergint aims to be its customers’ best service provider.” This year, Convergint is celebrating its 20th anniversary. In 2021, they will continue to focus on the same critical components that have dominated since day one taking care of colleagues, customers, and the communities where they operate.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is more than a buzzword. AI is increasingly becoming part of our everyday lives, and a vital tool in the physical security industry. In 2020, AI received more attention than ever, and expanded the ways it can contribute value to physical security systems. This article will revisit some of those development at year-end, including links back to the originally published content. In the security market today, AI is expanding the use cases, making technologies more powerful and saving money on manpower costs - and today represents just the beginning of what AI can do for the industry. What it will never do, however, is completely take the place of humans in operating security systems. There is a limit to how much we are willing to turn over to machines - even the smartest ones. Beyond video analytics "Apply AI to security and now you have an incredibly powerful tool that allows you to operate proactively rather than reactively," said Jody Ross of AMAG Technology, one of our Expert Roundtable Panelists. AI made its initial splash in the physical security market by transforming the effectiveness of video analytics AI made its initial splash in the physical security market by transforming the effectiveness of video analytics. However, now there are many other applications, too, as addressed by our Expert Panel Roundtable in another article. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning provide useful tools to make sense of massive amounts of Internet of Things (IoT) data. By helping to automate low-level decision-making, the technologies can make security operators more efficient. Biometrics with access control Intelligent capabilities can expand integration options such as increasing the use of biometrics with access control. AI can also help to monitor mechanics and processes. Intelligent systems can help end users understand building occupancy and traffic patterns and even to help enforce physical distancing. These are just a few of the possible uses of the technologies - in the end, the sky is the limit. AI is undoubtedly one of the bigger disrupters in the physical security industry, and adoption is growing at a rapid rate. And it’s not just about video analytics. Rather, it is data AI, which is completely untapped by the security industry. Bottom line: AI can change up your security game by automatically deciphering information to predict the future using a wide range of sources and data that have been collected, whether past, present, and future. That’s right. You can look into the future. Smarter perimeter protection Now, Intrusion Detection (Perimeter Protection) systems with cutting-edge, built-in AI algorithms to recognise a plethora of different object types, can distinguish objects of interest, thus significantly decreasing the false-positive intrusion rate. The more advanced AI-based systems enable the users to draw ROIs based on break-in points, areas of high-valuables, and any other preference to where alerts may be beneficial. AI Loitering Detection can be used to receive alerts on suspicious activity outside any given store Similarly, AI Loitering Detection can be used to receive alerts on suspicious activity outside any given store. The loitering time and region of interest are customisable in particular systems, which allows for a range of detection options. Smart security is advancing rapidly. As AI and 4K rise in adoption on smart video cameras, these higher video resolutions are driving the demand for more data to be stored on-camera. AI and smart video promise to extract greater insights from security video. Meeting urban needs Complex, extensive camera networks will already require a large amount of data storage, particularly if this is 24/7 monitoring from smart video-enabled devices. Newer edge computing will play an important role in capturing, collecting, and analysing data. There are many more types of cameras being used today, such as body cameras, dashboard cameras, and new Internet of Things (IoT) devices and sensors. Video data is so rich nowadays, you can analyse it and deduce a lot of valuable information in real-time, instead of post-event. In smart cities applications, the challenge of identifying both physical and invisible threats to meet urban citizens’ needs will demand a security response that is proactive, adaptable and dynamic. Optimise security solutions As we look ahead to the future of public safety, it’s clear that new technologies, driven by artificial intelligence (AI), can dramatically improve the effectiveness of today’s physical security space. For smart cities, the use of innovative AI and machine learning technologies have already started to help optimise security solutions. In sports stadium applications, AI’s role in getting fans and spectators back after the COVID pandemic is huge, through capabilities such as social distance monitoring, crowd scanning/metrics, facial recognition, fever detection, track and trace and providing behavioural analytics. Technologies such as AI-powered collaboration platforms now work alongside National Leagues, Franchises and Governing Bodies to implement AI surveillance software into their CCTV/surveillance cameras. AI surveillance software In many ways, it’s the equivalent of a neighbourhood watch programme made far more intelligent through the use of AI This is now creating a more collaborative effort from the operations team in stadiums, rather than purely security. AI surveillance software, when implemented into the surveillance cameras can be accessed by designated users on any device and on any browser platform. One of the biggest advantages of using AI technology is that it’s possible to integrate this intelligent software into building smarter, safer communities and cities. Essentially, this means developing a layered system that connects multiple sensors for the detection of visible and invisible threats. Integrated systems mean that threats can be detected and tracked, with onsite and law enforcement notified faster, and possibly before an assault begins to take place. In many ways, it’s the equivalent of a neighbourhood watch programme made far more intelligent through the use of AI. Fighting illicit trade Using technology in this way means that thousands of people can be screened seamlessly and quickly, without invading their civil liberties or privacy. AI’s ability to detect visible or invisible threats or behavioural anomalies will prove enormously valuable to many sectors across our global economy. Revolutionary AI-driven technologies can help to fight illicit trade across markets. AI technologies in this specific application promise to help build safer and more secure communities in the future. AI can support the ongoing fight against illicit trade on a global scale in a tangible way. For financial transactions at risk of fraud and money laundering, for example, tracking has become an increasing headache if done manually. As a solution to this labour-intensive process, AI technology can be trained to follow all the compliance rules and process a large number of documents - often billions of pages of documents - in a short period of time.
The coronavirus pandemic had a monumental impact on all aspects of the business world, including the security industry. However, amid the gloom and doom, many security professionals also saw opportunity: New ways the industry’s products could be applied to address the challenges of coping with the virus. This article will review some of those opportunities, based on our reporting throughout the year and including links back to the original articles. During and after the pandemic, security systems are an important asset when it comes to helping to keep occupants and buildings safe as employees return to work. For example, video analytics can provide insight into how spaces have previously been used and can help to predict where and when occupants encounter each other or congregate. Role of thermal cameras These foot-traffic patterns can inform settings for a variety of devices - like ventilation and temperature controls - and even help owners create social distancing plans and monitor personal protective equipment (PPE) compliance. Thermal surveillance, a mainstay of traditional physical security and outdoor perimeter detection, began being deployed early in the pandemic to quickly scan employees, contractors and visitors as part of a first line of defence to detect COVID-19 symptoms. These systems provide flexibility and can offer integrations with multiple VMS platforms and access control devices These systems provide flexibility and can offer integrations with multiple VMS platforms and access control devices. Thermal cameras can be a tool for detecting fever, but any use of the technology for this purpose is full of qualifications and caveats. Importantly, how the camera system is configured makes all the difference in whether temperature readings are accurate, and the downside of inaccurate readings is obvious - and potentially deadly. Temperature detection systems FDA guidelines limit how the cameras are used, not to mention guidance from other regulatory/government bodies such as the CDC. One of our Expert Roundtable panelists compares the market to a “wild west scenario,” and almost all the panelists are clear about how customers should approach the market: Buyer beware. There are many companies jumping into selling temperature detection systems to the state, local governments, hospitals, airports and local businesses, but do they know how to drive one? Anyone can get behind a car and drive it into a wall by accident. The same can happen with a temperature detection system. Customers need to know what questions to ask to ensure they maximise the accuracy of body temperature detection systems. Rise of contactless Spread of the novel coronavirus has jolted awareness of hygiene as it relates to touching surfaces such as keypads. No longer in favor are contact-based modalities including use of personal identification numbers (PINs) and keypads, and the shift has been sudden and long-term. Both customers and manufacturers were taken by surprise by this aspect of the virus’s impact and are therefore scrambling for solutions. Immediate impact of the change includes suspension of time and attendance systems that are touch-based Immediate impact of the change includes suspension of time and attendance systems that are touch-based. Some two-factor authentication systems are being downgraded to RFID-only, abandoning the keypad and/or biometric components that contributed to higher security, but are now unacceptable because they involve touching. "Users do not want to touch anything anymore,” says Alex Zarrabi, President of Touchless Biometrics Systems (TBS). Facial recognition system Another contactless system that benefits from concerns about spread of COVID-19 is facial recognition. New advancement in software, specifically in the areas of algorithms, neural networks and deep learning and/or artificial intelligence (AI), have all dramatically improved both the performance and accuracy of facial recognition systems, further expanding its use for an increasing number of applications. A low-tech solution - the face mask - became a leading preventative measure during the pandemic. But, a high-tech solution is necessary to ensure that everyone is wearing them. Cameras powered by artificial intelligence can now identify whether or not people entering a facility are wearing facemasks and help enforce adherence to mask mandates. This technology is proving to be a cost-effective solution that reduces risks of confrontations over masks policies and gives managers the data they need to document regulatory compliance and reduce liability. Smart video analytics Other technology approaches, including artificial intelligence (AI), were also brought to bear during the pandemic. The German data analytics powerhouse G2K, for example, has developed a Corona Detection and Containment System (CDCS) that is ready for immediate use in record time. Detection takes place in combination with AI-supported data analysis to specifically identify virus hotspots and distribution routes, as well as to identify other potentially infected persons. One specific AI application fuels the reopening of the world and successfully keeps the spread of the virus abated One specific AI application fuels the reopening of the world and successfully keeps the spread of the virus abated. A “collaborative security” application includes a synthesis of smart video analytics, facial recognition, object identification/detection, and thermal cameras that can support the reopening of businesses globally when installed within those facilities frequented by customers. Enforcing social distancing Several applications have been successful to date and will increase in usability in the foreseeable future, creating “smart cities” working together towards a safer, more secure world. The site of one pilot programme is the 250,000-square-foot HID Global facility in Austin. For the pilot programme, 80 HID Location Services readers were installed in a wide area in the facility, including a variety of environments. Initially 30 badges and 30 fobs, all BLE-enabled, were issued to employees. If a badge identifies another nearby beacon (suggesting a social distancing failure), it emits a blinking LED light, which can be seen by the offending co-worker. To ensure social distancing, a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon is emitted from an employee’s fob (or from a badge that has the same functionality). The beacon communicates peer-to-peer with a beacon emitted by another employee’s fob or badge to alert if the location of the two employees is less than six feet apart. For contact tracing, the beacons communicate via a nearby “reader” (a BluFi BLE-to-Wi-Fi gateway) to the Bluzone cloud-based software-as-a-service. COVID-19 white papers In addition, we published several White Papers in 2020 that addressed various aspects of the coronavirus pandemic. They included: The top five security lessons learned that apply across all industries navigating COVID-19. Using video analytics to keep staff, visitors and customers safe by enforcing social distancing. How antimicrobial treatment on door handles and levers can reduce disease spread. How companies can put in extra precautions that will continue to grow and adapt with their environment over the long-term. Determining the practicalities and capabilities of today's thermal cameras to accurately detect body temperature.
Johan Cruijff ArenA will utilise innovative video analytics to improve visitor flow, optimise parking utilisation and offer fans an anonymous way to provide feedback about the stadium experience, among other uses. The Security & Safety Things IoT platform for smart cameras will integrate into the ArenA’s operational software to provide key insights into stadium operations and ongoing health and safety measures, especially useful since the pandemic. The partnership will provide a potential model for other organisations looking to deploy technology solutions to safely reopen. IoT platform for smart cameras Security and Safety Things GmbH and the Johan Cruijff ArenA are partnering up and will deploy S&STs IoT platform for smart surveillance cameras to enhance overall fan experience, optimise ArenA operations and increase visitor security and privacy. The ArenA is home to AFC Ajax and the internationally renowned Amsterdam Innovation ArenA (AIA), a living lab established by the ArenA and the City of Amsterdam to enable development and testing of innovative stadium and smart city solutions. Security & Safety Things IoT platform S&ST IoT platform and network of cameras is integrated into the ArenA’s dashboard software The Security & Safety Things (S&ST) IoT platform and network of cameras is integrated into the ArenA’s dashboard software to provide information and analysis for safety and security as well optimisation of stadium operations and visitor engagement. “Every technology selected for our innovation environment is strategic because of the potential benefits not only to our ArenA, but to the City of Amsterdam and other stadiums and large event venues seeking technological solutions to help to re-open safely and operate their facility more intelligently,” said Sander van Stiphout, Director International, Johan Cruijff ArenA. Sander van Stiphout adds, “The unique flexibility of the Security & Safety Things approach enables us to simultaneously deploy COVID-19 health and safety analytics along with business optimisation tools and easily re-equip the cameras with other analytic applications as our needs change.” AI-enabled video analytic applications A series of smart cameras on the S&ST IoT platform are installed in key areas throughout the stadium. Using specialised, Artificial Intelligence-enabled video analytic applications from the S&ST Application Store that run directly on each camera, each device will provide the ArenA with valuable operational insights. When the stadium reopens, crowd detection analytics will monitor social distancing compliance and visitor flow around entrances and food or merchandise kiosks. License plate recognition cameras will assist with real-time occupancy monitoring for parking and traffic flow optimisation. Queue detection applications Queue detection applications can be employed to reduce visitor wait times by directing fans to less busy areas and by providing the insights required to optimise staffing levels at peak times. In one specific area, a camera also provides the ability for visitors to provide feedback about their stadium experience in an anonymous and contact-free way by detecting the visual of a ‘thumbs-up’ or ‘thumbs-down’ from a visitor, collecting only the rating without disrupting people flow. Smart camera platform We’re honoured to be joining the Johan Cruijff ArenA as an innovation partner" “The flexibility of our smart camera platform and the ArenA’s mission of innovation are very well matched to produce the intelligence necessary to address real world issues of privacy, health and safety but also new and creative ideas for stadium and event management,” said Hartmut Schaper, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Security & Safety Things GmbH. Hartmut adds, “We’re honoured to be joining the Johan Cruijff ArenA as an innovation partner and to help them provide a seamless and safe visitor experience.” Smart surveillance camera system The camera system and how it is used complies with all European and Dutch privacy regulations. Furthermore, there are various advantages to this camera system, when it comes to privacy. These cameras are equipped with powerful processors that analyse the images directly on the camera, reducing the need for a constant video stream to be passed on to a central location, where it can be monitored or further processed. Instead, the cameras can be configured to send only the information about relevant events such as when a long queue is forming, groups of people gather too closely, or individuals are not wearing face coverings as required. Only then will respective images be passed along. This reduces the processing of visitors’ personal information to an absolute minimum as opposed to a traditional set-up where all footage is transmitted and centrally processed at all times.
Singapore’s Changi Airport Group, one of the most innovative and technologically advanced airports in the world, has selected Genetec, Inc. (Genetec), a globally renowned technology provider of unified security, public safety, operations, and business intelligence solutions to enhance and upgrade its security system. Genetec Security Center The three-year project, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2023, will see Genetec Security Center, a unified security platform that blends IP security systems within a single intuitive interface, underpinning the airport’s security operations, with a specific focus on the video surveillance system across its terminals. The contract for Changi Airport Group was awarded to Genetec following a rigorous competitive tender process. “Increasingly, our airport customers are understanding the deep business insights that Genetec Security Center is capable of delivering, its ability to inform and create value for multiple areas of an airport business operation and improve the overall passenger and employee experience,” said Giovanni Taccori, Commercial Lead Transportation, APAC at Genetec, Inc.
The Very Group is the UK’s largest integrated digital retailer and financial services provider. It offers 1,900 brands to its four million customers. Due to the company’s growth, it built a new state-of-the-art fulfilment centre - close to one million square feet - to centralise operations and drive efficiency. The Very Group has historically operated from three fulfilment centres in the north of England. Due to the business’ growth, it needed a new, purpose-built and automated facility in a central, well connected location; that could accommodate all one-man fulfilment and returns operations on one site, and that provided room for continued expansion. The space offered by the new site in the East Midlands means that The Very Group can process more orders and use new technology to make the business more responsive, reducing the time it takes to get products to customers. Support business growth The site’s position in the East Midlands, adjacent to the M1 and East Midlands Airport, with its own rail freight terminal, will enable the business to increase its cut-off time for next day delivery to midnight from 7pm, and explore the introduction of same day delivery in the future. A crucial aspect of the new hub was security - with the need to not only secure the site and the stock inside, but implement solutions which would benefit the wider business too. The Very Group required a platform which could provide the business-wide value it was seeking The Very Group required a platform which could unite operations and provide the business-wide value it was seeking. The company approached Grantfen, initially on a consultancy basis, to guide the organisation on the route it should be taking and the technologies that could support its ambition. Grantfen quickly recognised the scope of The Very Group’s ambitions for a platform that was easy-to-use and that could bring together information from hundreds of different sensors and technologies. Incorporating video surveillance It put forward a comprehensive solution built on the Genetec Security Center unified platform. Incorporating video surveillance and analytics, access control, automatic number plate recognition and integration with other key business systems, this allowed The Very Group to deploy best of breed technologies from a range of vendors including HID Global, Axis Communications and SenStar. Perhaps the most important solution needed was tracking who was coming in and out of the building - with such a large workforce, combined with inbound and outbound deliveries, the facility has hundreds of people inside at any one time. Previously, security manually searched people selected at random. However, thanks to the robust Genetec software development kit, and Grantfen’s specialist development expertise, The Very Group has been able to adapt the solution and write its own code in order to use the access control system to implement truly random searches. Number plate recognition This has involved getting permission to hold employee data, but again, thanks to the new system brought together by Security Center, the data is housed safely. Moving from three fulfilment centres into one, consolidated facility meant a change in operations for The Very Group, and security needed to mirror this evolution. Therefore, with the volume of traffic coming in and out of the site increasing, The Very Group implemented automatic number plate recognition (ANPR). Heavy goods vehicles could be monitored coming in and out of the site, enabling those in the diary to enter and exit the grounds in an efficient manner. Plus, with timestamps now able to show when vehicles entered or exited the grounds, it helped with yard management and traffic flow, with Security Center able to generate reports on how traffic is moving around the yard. Employees are able to take advantage too - with the ANPR recognising them and seamlessly letting them into the car park. Health and safety standards The opening of Skygate, our new fulfilment centre, means a new era for the group" This enhanced integration has benefitted other areas of the business too. The CCTV control room is now able to monitor fulfilment centre flow, looking at movements such as trailers, to help maximise efficiencies and ensure high health and safety standards. Dean Cooper, Head of Security at The Very Group, commented: “The opening of Skygate, our new fulfilment centre, means a new era for the group. We are a digitally-led business, and the fact we are now able to enhance operations and yield more value from security functions is going to help us operationally. Genetec and Grantfen have played a huge part in accelerating our sophistication in this area, and I look forward to how we can gain increasing insights from all the technology has to offer.” Deep integration and analytics While the roll-out has been relatively recent, the positive effects are already being felt across the business. This has led to future plans about what else could be introduced - all underpinned by Genetec Security Centre. “Genetec Security Centre is helping to improve inter-departmental collaboration thanks to its reporting functions, alongside benefiting operations and ensuring the security of the facility. We are an ambitious business, and as we grow we need a system that will continue to evolve with our requirements. Genetec enables this, and alongside its deep integration and leading analytics, we look forward to continuing the partnership over years to come”, concluded Cooper.
Global MSC Security announced that it has been appointed by the City of Edinburgh Council to consult on a planned upgrade of its video surveillance system from analogue to IP, as Edinburgh progresses towards its vision to become one of the world smartest capital cities. Working with the Council, Global MSC Security will use its public sector expertise to oversee the preparation of a tender specification of a fully integrated public space surveillance operation. Upgrading public realm CCTV surveillance system The appointment of Global MSC Security follows the announcement that the City of Edinburgh Council is investing over £1 million in its public realm CCTV (including housing blocks, transport network and Council buildings) and has also secured £712,000 from the 'Scotland's 8th City, the Smart City' European Regional Development Fund Strategic Intervention in support of an upgrade to its CCTV infrastructure, as part of its smart city programme. Global MSC Security has a wealth of expertise in public space surveillance, having consulted on dozens of local authority CCTV surveillance projects, including The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, Central Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Herefordshire, North Somerset, Barnet, Bristol City, Dorset, Neath and Port Talbot, Mid Devon and Maidstone and Luton Councils. Installing new IP cameras, VMS and encoders Global MSC Security will ensure the City of Edinburgh Council is able to upgrade its public space cameras, VMS and encoders Global MSC Security will ensure the City of Edinburgh Council is able to upgrade its public space cameras, video management system (VMS) and encoders, with the right technology at the best price and implemented smoothly. Global MSC Security’s Managing Director, Derek Maltby stated “We offer a wealth of experience in specifying public space surveillance systems for local authorities. Global MSC Security is proud to be involved in what is a major initiative not only for the City but Scotland and its position as a leader in smart services and society.” Resilient and secure city surveillance system He adds, “This important and essential infrastructure upgrade represents a significant investment, and the resulting system will provide the Council with a function-rich, future-proof, highly resilient and secure surveillance system.” Derek further stated, “However, for any organisation making the switch from analogue to IP, it is vital that the transition is managed in the correct way, to maximise resources and optimise system performance. That begins with a robust tender specification, which is where our expertise lies.” The tender specification is expected to be released by the City of Edinburgh Council in February 2021 and the contract awarded in September.
Synectics, a globally renowned company in the design, integration and support of advanced security and surveillance systems, announced that the company has won a new contract with Irish Rail (Iarnród Éireann) to upgrade all InterCity Mark 4 rolling stock on the Dublin to Cork route to an IP-based video surveillance solution, following a competitive bid process. The IP video security system contract will see Synectics develops and installs an innovative safety-critical IP video surveillance system that enables full connectivity from trains to the control room, there by replacing the existing CCTV approach. Safety-critical IP video surveillance system installation Each eight-coach train set, using Synectics’ T2000 platform, will help utilise a suite of IP 360-degree ‘fish-eye’ cameras Each eight-coach train set, using Synectics’ T2000 platform, will help utilise a suite of IP 360-degree ‘fish-eye’ cameras, in the vestibules and saloon areas, to provide high-quality surveillance information. Installation is expected to commence in September 2021, to be followed by an additional support contract to provide a five-year in-territory maintenance programme. IP video security technology Iain Stringer, Managing Director of Synectics, commented “We are delighted that Irish Rail has chosen our IP video security technology, alongside our design, programme management and installation capabilities, to upgrade surveillance on one of their premier InterCity routes.” He adds, “This win with Irish Rail represents a further step into on-vehicle heavy rail solutions for our Synectics Security business, building on our deep experience across light-rail markets.” Smart technology developments Iain further stated, “Irish Rail is our second public transport win in Ireland over the last few months and reflects our growing reputation for smart technology developments that meet next generation operator requirements. Our approach is opening up new opportunities for all rail operators to transition their video management capability to the cloud and improve operational effectiveness.”
MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company S.A. (MSC) is the world's second-largest shipping line in terms of container vessel capacity. It operates 480 offices across 155 countries worldwide with over 24,000 employees. MSC’s shipping line sails on more than 200 trade routes, calling at over 315 ports. Challenges MSc searched for options to manage attendance in the office spread across 15+ locations. A central server that can handle the capacity of 1000+ users and can seamlessly integrate with their accounting software - SAP. Additionally, they required a fool-proof solution that can assist them to manage multiple shifts with automated shift correction options and work hour’s calculation in overnight shifts and more. Solution The offered solution deploys the access control solution that enables complete security of all their units Matrix addressed these challenges by proposing a Door Controller for the locations connected by a central platform. This Time-Attendance Solution helps them to procure accurate attendance details of an employee in no time. Furthermore, this attendance data is integrated with accounting software - SAP for seamless attendance and payroll management. The offered solution deploys the access control solution that enables complete security of all their units. COSEC PVR Door Controller - a contactless biometric that is engineered to offer the utmost security, eliminates the risk for forgery or identity duplication. Results Effortless attendance management of all location from head office Multiple connectivity options Streamlined shift allocation and automated shift correction Seamless integration with SAP Customised attendance policy formation Real-time alert on attendance related event and auto scheduled reporting No correction required for overnight shift environment Products and Solutions Offered: COSEC PVR DOOR CONTROLLER - Palm Vein Door Controller COSEC CENTRA LE - Application Server Platform with 1000 Users COSEC LE TAM - Time Attendance Software Module COSEC LE ACM - Access Control Software Module
Round table discussion
What a year 2020 was for the security industry! There were vast challenges that could not have been foreseen at the beginning of the year. It is safe to say that the events of 2020 defied all industry prognosticators. However, is that any reason not to hope our expectations looking ahead to 2021 will be much closer to reality? Can we possibly benefit from looking ahead and trying to plan for the challenges of the year ahead? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What will be the security industry’s biggest challenge in 2021?
Artificial intelligence is more than just the latest buzzword in the security marketplace. In some cases, smarter computer technologies like AI and machine learning (ML) are helping to transform how security operates. AI is also expanding the industry’s use cases, sometimes even beyond the historic province of the security realm. It turns out that AI is also a timely tool in the middle of a global pandemic. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How is artificial intelligence (AI) changing the security market?
Traditionally, dealer-installers and/or integrators provide the front line of support to end user customers after a sale. Because integrators assemble and provide the “solution” – often using products from multiple manufacturers – they are most familiar with the total system and can troubleshoot any problems. However, manufacturers may be better equipped to deal with specific problems after a sale and also to provide a variety of resources to end-users. It’s a delicate balance, and the best approach may be dependent on the product or even the market. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What is the role of manufacturers in providing support to end user customers after the sale?
Surveillance software: Manufacturers & Suppliers
- Milestone Surveillance software
- CCTV Software Surveillance software
- Panasonic Surveillance software
- Hanwha Techwin Surveillance software
- Vanderbilt Surveillance software
- Axis Communications Surveillance software
- Geutebruck Surveillance software
- Bosch Surveillance software
- artec Surveillance software
- Vicon Surveillance software
- Genetec Surveillance software
- Verint Surveillance software
- March Networks Surveillance software
- ADPRO Surveillance software
- FLIR Systems Surveillance software
- Siqura Surveillance software
- eneo Surveillance software
- TDSi Surveillance software
- TeleEye Surveillance software
- CitySync Surveillance software
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