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In focus

Network / IP - News

Putting security in focus

Published on 25 May, 2006
Industry has always been, and always will be, susceptible to breaches in security.  The diverse nature of the sector - anything from utilities and telecoms providers through to construction and heavy-duty manufacturing will have an equally diverse set of risks and the potential for a similarly broad range of CCTV-based security solutions to address these risks.

A Facilities Manager working within a Gas Utility, for example, may be concerned with intruders gaining access to highly explosive areas such as storage tank farms and mixing facilities.  His counterpart in the Construction industry may have an issue with large quantities of material disappearing from a building site.  A Facilities Manager within a manufacturing plant, on the other hand, may have valuable raw material or finished product to protect, and deliveries coming and going all through the night.

But many will also share common challenges: the need to protect a perimeter - whether that is a temporary perimeter, in the case of a construction site, for example, or a permanent, fixed manufacturing facility; the need to protect lone workers working in hostile, potentially hazardous environments; and the need to be able to monitor sites, often in remote locations, from vandalism or theft where the cost of manning such sites permanently would be prohibitive.

And it is not only in applications of security that CCTV is coming into its own. Cameras and associated monitoring technology can also be used for remote site process monitoring, enabling plant tours to be conducted electronically and reducing personal site visits to become ‘by exception' rather than routine.  Cameras are also used to pinpoint plant and machinery for audit purposes.  And in an increasingly litigious age where health and safety is paramount, CCTV is being used not only to protect workers (and the general public) from genuine danger and harm, but also protect industry from nefarious claims using stored footage of ‘alleged' incidents as they occur.

As the needs of industry have become ever more sophisticated, so have the video transmission products and detection technologies that are now being deployed.

The latest ADPRO FastTrace Multi-Site Video Security System, for example, a secure, cost-effective and reliable remote off-site video transmission and verification system has recently been enhanced in line with BS8418 that sets new rules for remote monitoring stations and installers in relation to the quality of technology deployed in monitored CCTV installations.  BS 8418 has recently been adopted by the police as a mandatory requirement for an effective response and is gaining momentum within the British Insurance industry.

New features for the ADPRO FastTrace Version 2.0 have been developed to meet the Standard's strict guidelines in relation to tamper, video integrity, control equipment integrity, communication integrity, and a host of procedures relating to video storage and retrieval.  It now provides up to 120 days storage of archived video at 2ips on 10 cameras without compromising image quality.

In terms of detection technology, ADPRO's PRO series of highly sensitive, standalone passive infrared detectors continue to be proven in the field of outdoor perimeter protection.  Integrating seamlessly with ADPRO's video management and transmission range, the PRO Series employs the latest signal processing and environmental adaptive circuitry to provide the highest reliability of detection while minimising nuisance alarms.  All units are specifically designed to operate in a range of outdoor environments and conditions.

The PRO Series have sensing areas that will detect people up to 150 metres (492 feet) away, depending on the model, by sensing temperature differences between them and the background.  They provide protection in low visibility conditions such as snow or fog, and are engineered for low maintenance, trouble-free operation, whatever the environment - something which is essential in industrial-style applications where dust, moisture, and extremes of temperature can be an issue.

One recent example of ADPRO technology in industry involves Scottish & Southern Energy that has more than 80 remote sites to secure.  Thanks to ADPRO, each remote site can now be centrally monitored from a single location reducing the need for on-site personnel.

Another example involves the builder's merchants Travis Perkins.  It has deployed a solution - compliant with BS8418 to ensure an effective police response - centred on ADPRO FastTrace to control and manage footage from 241 of its outlets.  It also has an instant voice response technology to warn intruders remotely over a network connection.  The system is already proving a major success in reducing vandalism, robberies and theft.

For the construction industry, ADPRO's FastTrace technology has been developed by the security firm Group 2 into Robowatch - a remote monitored CCTV solution which is billed as doing everything a security guard does, but more effectively and at less than half the cost.  The solution is similarly already proving itself in dramatically reducing the amount of material stolen form site during building projects, as well as playing a support role in protecting employees and the public from harm.

Of course it is impossible to do justice to the subject of industrial security in a single page.  Industrial firms needs to protect their assets whilst at the same time controlling costs, and this means that technology needs to work even harder in securing permanent sites, protecting remote locations, and helping to identify improvements to operational efficiency wherever possible - the ultimate value-add.

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