Intercom Systems - Expert commentary

A Secured Entrance Is The First Defense Against An Active Shooter
A Secured Entrance Is The First Defense Against An Active Shooter

The statistics are staggering. The death tolls are rising. And those who now fear environments that were once thought to be safe zones like school campuses, factories, commercial businesses and government facilities, find themselves having to add the routine of active-shooter drills into their traditional fire drill protocols. The latest active shooter statistics released by the FBI earlier this year in their annual active-shooter report designated 27 events as active shooter incidents in 2018. The report reveals that 16 of the 27 incidents occurred in areas of commerce, seven incidents occurred in business environments, and five incidents occurred in education environments. Deadly active-shooter events Six of the 12 deadliest shootings in the country have taken place in the past five years Six of the 12 deadliest shootings in the country have taken place in the past five years, including Sutherland Springs church, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the San Bernardino regional center, the Walmart in El Paso and the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, which have all occurred since 2015. Although these incidents occurred in facilities with designated entry points common to churches, schools and businesses, the two most deadly active-shooter events since 2015 were the Route 91 Harvest music festival shooting in Las Vegas that left 58 dead and the Pulse nightclub killings in Orlando where 49 perished. As Christopher Combs, special agent in charge of the FBI field office in San Antonio, Texas, said during a news conference following the August 31 mass shooting in Odessa, Texas that claimed seven lives: “We are now at almost every two weeks seeing an active shooter in this country." Active shooter incidents Between December 2000 and December 2018, the FBI’s distribution of active shooter incidents by location looks like this: Businesses Open to Pedestrian Traffic (74) Businesses Closed to Pedestrian Traffic (43) K-12 Schools (39) Institutions of Higher Learning (16) Non-Military Government Properties (28) Military Properties—Restricted (5) Healthcare Facilities (11) Houses of Worship (10) Private Properties (12) Malls (6) What the majority of these venues have in common is they all have a front entrance or chokepoint for anyone entering the facilities, which is why any active-shooter plan must include a strategy to secure that entry point. Situational awareness in perimeter and door security Preventing people with the wrong intentions from entering the space is the goal" According to Paul Franco, an A&E with more than 28 years of experience as a consultant and systems integrator focusing on schools, healthcare and large public and private facilities, that while active shooter incidents continue to rise, the residual effect has been an increase in situational awareness in perimeter and door security. “Certainly, protecting people and assets is the number one goal of all our clients. There are multiple considerations in facilities like K-12 and Healthcare. Preventing people with the wrong intentions from entering the space is the goal. But a critical consideration to emphasize to your client is getting that person out of your facility and not creating a more dangerous situation by locking the person in your facility,” says Franco. High-security turnstiles “Schools today are creating a space for vetting visitors prior to allowing access into the main facility. Using technology properly like high-security turnstiles offer great benefits in existing schools where space constraints and renovation costs can be impractical.” What steps should they be taken when recommending the proper door security to ensure the building is safe As a consultant/integrator, when discussions are had with a client that has a facility in a public space like a corporate building, government center or industrial facility, what steps should they be taken when recommending the proper door security to ensure the building is safe and can protect its people and assets? For Frank Pisciotta, President and CEO of Business Protection Specialists, Inc. in Raleigh, North Carolina, a fundamental element of his security strategy is making appropriate recommendations that are broad-based and proactive. Properly identifying the adversaries “As a consultant, my recommendations must include properly identifying the adversaries who may show up at a client’s door, the likelihood of that event occurring, the consequences of that event occurring, determining if there are tripwires that can be set so an organization can move their line of defense away from the door, educating employees to report potential threats and creating real-time actionable plans to respond to threats. A more reactionary posture might include such thing as target hardening such as ballistic resistant materials at entry access points to a facility,” Pisciotta says. Veteran consultant David Aggleton of Aggleton & Associates of Mission Viejo, California recommends that clients compartmentalize their higher security areas for limited access by adding multiple credential controls (card + keypad + biometric), along with ‘positive’ access systems that inhibit tailgating/piggybacking such as secure turnstiles, revolving door and mantrap if your entrances and security needs meet the required space and access throughput rates. Integrated solution of electronic access control Defining a single point of entry in some public facilities is becoming the new standard of care according to many A&Es and security consultants, especially in a school environment. This approach allows a concerted effort when it comes to staffing, visitor monitoring and an integrated technology solution. The bottom line remains: most buildings are vulnerable to a security breach A proactive stance to securing a door entryway will use an integrated solution of electronic access control, turnstiles, revolving doors and mantraps that can substantially improve a facility’s security profile. The bottom line remains: most buildings are vulnerable to a security breach, so it’s not a matter of if there will be a next active shooter tragedy, it’s only a matter of where. Enhancing access control assurance “There is no easy answer to this question,” says Pisciotta referring to how a secured entrance can deter an active shooter. “There have been at least two high-profile incidents of adversaries shooting their way into a facility through access control barriers. So, if the threat so dictates, a ballistic resistant might be required.” He concludes: “There is obviously no question that turnstiles, revolving doors and man traps enhance access control assurance. Electronic access control is easy to integrate with these devices and providing that credentials are secure, approval processes are in place, change management is properly managed and the appropriate auditing measures in place, access control objectives can be met.”

Are Mobile Credentials More Secure Than Smart Cards?
Are Mobile Credentials More Secure Than Smart Cards?

For the past several years, there has been a focus by integrators and customers to assure that their card-based access control systems are secure. To give businesses an extra incentive to meet their cybersecurity threats, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has decided to hold the business community responsible for failing to implement good cybersecurity practices and is now filing lawsuits against those that don't. For instance, the FTC filed a lawsuit against D-Link and its U.S. subsidiary, alleging that it used inadequate safeguards on its wireless routers and IP cameras that left them vulnerable to hackers.Many companies perceive that they are safer with a card but, if done correctly, the mobile can be a far more secure option  Now, as companies are learning how to protect card-based systems, such as their access control solutions, along comes mobile access credentials and their readers which use smart phones instead of cards as the vehicle for carrying identification information. Many companies perceive that they are safer with a card but, if done correctly, the mobile can be a far more secure option with many more features to be leveraged. Handsets deliver biometric capture and comparison as well as an array of communication capabilities from cellular and Wi-Fi to Bluetooth LE and NFC. As far as security goes, the soft credential, by definition, is already a multi-factor solution. Types Of Access Control Authentication Access control authenticates you by following three things:  Recognises something you have (RFID tag/card/key), Recognises something you know (PIN) or Recognises something you are (biometrics). Your smart phone has all three authentication parameters. This soft credential, by definition, is already a multi-factor solution. Your mobile credentials remain protected behind a smart phone's security parameters, such as biometrics and PINs. Organizations want to use smart phones in their upcoming access control implementations Once a biometric, PIN or password is entered to access the phone, the user automatically has set up 2-factor access control verification - what you know and what you have or what you have and a second form of what you have.                 To emphasize, one cannot have access to the credential without having access to the phone. If the phone doesn’t work, the credential doesn’t work. The credential operates just like any other app on the phone. The phone must be “on and unlocked.” These two factors – availability and built-in multi-factor verification – are why organizations want to use smart phones in their upcoming access control implementations. Smart Phone Access Control Is Secure Plus, once a mobile credential is installed on a smart phone, it cannot be re-installed on another smart phone. You can think of a soft credential as being securely linked to a specific smart phone. Similar to a card, if a smart phone is lost, damaged or stolen, the process should be the same as with a traditional physical access credential. It should be immediately deactivated in the access control management software - with a new credential issued as a replacement. Your mobile credentials remain protected behind a smart phone's security parameters, such as biometrics and PINs Leading readers additionally use AES encryption when transferring data. Since the Certified Common Criteria EAS5+ Computer Interface Standard provides increased hardware cybersecurity, these readers resist skimming, eavesdropping and replay attacks.            When the new mobile system leverages the Security Industry Association's (SIA) Open Supervised Device Protocol (OSDP), it also will interface easily with control panels or other security management systems, fostering interoperability among security devices. Likewise, new soft systems do not require the disclosure of any sensitive end-user personal data. All that should be needed to activate newer systems is simply the phone number of the smart phone.All that should be needed to activate newer systems is simply the phone number of the smart phone Bluetooth And NFC The Safer Options Bottom line - both Bluetooth and NFC credentials are safer than hard credentials. Read range difference yields a very practical result from a security aspect. First of all, when it comes to cybersecurity, there are advantages to a closer read range. NFC eliminates any chances of having the smart phone unknowingly getting read such as can happen with a longer read range. There are also those applications where multiple access readers are installed very near to one-another due to many doors being close. One reader could open multiple doors simultaneously. The shorter read range or tap of an NFC enabled device would stop such problems. However, with this said in defense of NFC, it must also be understood that Bluetooth-enabled readers can provide various read ranges, including those of no longer than a tap as well. One needs to understand that there are also advantages to a longer reader range capability. Since NFC readers have such a short and limited read range, they must be mounted on the unsecure side of the door and encounter all the problems such exposure can breed. Conversely, Bluetooth readers mount on the secure sides of doors and can be kept protected out of sight. Aging Systems Could Cause Problems Research shows that Bluetooth enabled smart phones are continuing to expand in use to the point where those not having them are already the exceptions With that said, be aware. Some older Bluetooth-enabled systems force the user to register themselves and their integrators for every application. Door access – register. Parking access – register again. Data access – register again, etc. Newer solutions provide an easier way to distribute credentials with features that allow the user to register only once and need no other portal accounts or activation features. By removing these additional information disclosures, vendors have eliminated privacy concerns that have been slowing down acceptance of mobile access systems. In addition, you don’t want hackers listening to your Bluetooth transmissions, replaying them and getting into your building, so make very sure that the system is immunised against such replays. That’s simple to do. Your manufacturer will show you which system will be best for each application. Research shows that Bluetooth enabled smart phones are continuing to expand in use to the point where those not having them are already the exceptions. They are unquestionably going to be a major component in physical and logical access control. Gartner suggests that, by 2020, 20 percent of organizations will use mobile credentials for physical access in place of traditional ID cards. Let’s rephrase that last sentence. In less than 18 months, one-fifth of all organizations will use the smart phone as the focal point of their electronic access control systems. Not proximity. Not smart cards. Phones!

Smart Access Control Is Essential To The Future Of Smart Cities
Smart Access Control Is Essential To The Future Of Smart Cities

Throughout the UK there are many examples of smart city transformation, with key industries including transport, energy, water and waste becoming increasingly ‘smart’. A smart city is a one that uses information and communication technologies to increase operational efficiency, share information with the public and improve both the quality of government services and resident welfare. Smart access is an important step forward in providing technologically advanced security management and access solutions to support the ambitions of smart cities and their respectively smart industries. Explaining Smart Access If we used the standard definition of smart, it would be to use technology to monitor, control and manage access, but the technology must be adapted to both the physical and management characteristics of smart cities. Smart access is an important step forward in providing advanced security management and access solutions to support the ambitions of smart cities For example, it would not make sense to install an iris biometric sensor at an isolated water storage tank, which is out in the open and may not even have electrical power. Nor would a permissions management system work, one that does not let you update permissions simply and easily and cannot be customized. With high volumes of people entering and exiting different areas of the city, it is important to be able to trace who has been where, when and for how long. Advanced software suites can provide access to all operations performed by users, including a complete audit trail. This information is often used by business owners or managers for audits, improvements or compliance. When initiating a new access control system it is important that the supplier and customer work together to understand: Who can enter a secure area Where in the building each individual has access to When an individual can enter a secure area How an individual will gain access to a secure area This information can be crucial in the event of a security breach, enabling investigators to find out who was the last known key holder in the building and what their movements were while there. Installing an electronic lock does not require electrical power or batteries, much less a connection to send information Modernizing Locks And Keys Installing an electronic lock does not require electrical power or batteries, much less a connection to send information, which means that it can be installed on any door as you would a mechanical lock without maintenance requirements. Permissions are stored within an intelligent key. If you have authorization for that lock, it will open. If you don’t, you won’t be allowed to enter and all of the activity carried out by the key will be recorded. You can update permissions from a computer or using an app on a cellphone at the time of access, which will update the key's permissions via Bluetooth. This allows shortened validity periods, constrains movements to be in line with company access policy and removes travel and fixed authoriser costs. This then delivers increased flexibility and higher levels of security. Remote Access Control Utilities Access rights can be set at any time and on any day, and if required can allow access on just one specific occasion Using an app improves access control by updating access rights in real time with the Bluetooth key. It also provides notification of lost keys, joint management of access schedules, protection of isolated workers and much more. Combined with new technological solutions, an app allows contextual information to be sent, such as on-site presence, duration of an operation, authorisations and reporting of anomalies. Access rights can be set at any time and on any day, and if required can allow access on just one specific occasion, for example to repair a failure. Access can be restricted to enable entry only during working hours, for example. Permissions can be granted for the amount of time required, which means that if permission is requested to access a site using a mobile app, the company should be able to access it, for example, in the next five minutes. Once this time has passed, the permission expires and, if a key is lost or it is stolen, they will not be able to access the site. The rules for granting permissions are infinite and easily customisable, and the system is very efficient when they are applied; as a result, the system is flexible and adapted to suit company processes and infrastructures. Using an app improves access control by updating access rights in real time with the Bluetooth key Finding Applications To Create Solutions In many cases, companies themselves find new applications for the solution, such as the need to obtain access using two different keys simultaneously to prevent a lone worker from accessing a dangerous area. The software that manages access makes it smart. It can be used from a web-based access manager or through personalized software that is integrated within a company's existing software solution, to automatically include information, such as the employee's contractual status, occupational risk prevention and the existence of work orders. In some companies, the access management system will help to further improve service levels by integrating it with the customer information system, allowing to link it for instance with alarms managers, intrusion managers or HR processes. With over one million access points currently secured worldwide, this simple and flexible solution will play a strategic role in the future of security.

Latest Climax Technology Co., Ltd. news

Climax Technology Launches The HSGW-Model Wireless Control With Alarm.com
Climax Technology Launches The HSGW-Model Wireless Control With Alarm.com

Taiwan-based Climax Technology Company announces the release of a security control compatible with Alarm.com’s cloud-based home security and automation platform. The HSGW-model wireless control has a wide range of regional certifications including EN Grade II for the European market and many other country-specific regulatory approvals. Alarm.com supports the entire ecosystem of Climax security sensors, peripherals, and automation devices in a variety of wireless frequencies. Climax controls and sensors include advanced features and superior wireless performance. Their encrypted F1 series wireless sensors have long battery life and two-kilometer open-air range. The HSGW control includes embedded Z-wave automation, dual-path Ethernet, 3G/LTE communication, high-zone capacity, and two-way voice for alarm verification. Feature-rich and competitive solution In combination with Alarm.com’s security, video, automation, and energy management services, the HSGW is an attractive, feature-rich, and competitive solution for home and small business owners. Alarm.com’s remote reseller portal complements these capabilities with a robust set of tools that increase the speed and efficiency of installations by authorized dealers. We are excited to expand our partnership with Alarm.com to fuel global growth" “We are excited to expand our partnership with Alarm.com to fuel global growth and broaden our range of smart home security hardware and solutions,” said Michael Chang, CEO of Climax Technology. Seamless integration “Seamless Alarm.com integration with Climax control panels and devices provides more hardware options for our resellers and expands the global footprint where our services can be offered,” said Reed Grothe, SVP Global Business Development at Alarm.com. Deep integration of Climax panels and sensors with Alarm.com technology means users can remotely monitor and automate their homes for greater security, comfort and peace of mind. Climax Security products are available in Europe, APAC, and the Americas from Climax Technologies and authorized distributors.

CES 2020 To Focus On Security’s Intersection With Consumer Electronics
CES 2020 To Focus On Security’s Intersection With Consumer Electronics

Security’s intersection with consumer electronics is on view at CES 2020, the world’s largest technology event, Jan. 7-10 in Las Vegas. The giant show features more than 170,000 attendees, 4,500 exhibitors and 1,100 industry thought-leaders featured on the CES stage. A range of technologies will be on display, from artificial intelligence (AI) to 5G, vehicle technology to AR/VR (augmented and virtual reality), robotics to home automation. Security plays a prominent role, too.The impact of this event for the smart home could be about delivering home analytics and enhancing privacy" Smart home market on the forefront The smart home market is a major focus. “For the smart home market at CES this year, we expect to see numerous announcements regarding home awareness,” says Blake Kozak, Senior Principal Analyst at IHS Markit. “This will include brands offering up additional analytics for consumer security cameras with a focus on edge-based solutions.” “The impact of this [event] for the smart home could be about delivering home analytics and enhancing privacy through cloudless architectures and new electronic door lock approaches,” he adds. An example of cloud analytics is the Resideo Home app, introduced in December, which will make whole-home monitoring possible for four critical networks of the home – water, air, energy and security. Resideo promises a “simplified and integrated smart home experience.” Video is also prominent at the show. “For cameras, we can expect to see more cameras focused on the outdoor space and possibly new form factors for video doorbells,” says Kozak. Familiar security industry brands exhibiting at CES 2020 include ADT, Ring, August Home and Yale (both part of ASSA ABLOY), Bosch and Alarm.com. Focus on Cybersecurity In 2020, companies will continue to focus on solutions for protecting consumer data" Cybersecurity is an aspect of many of the devices on display at CES. “Device security and data privacy play a key role in the adoption of connected devices,” says Elizabeth Parks, President, Parks Associates. “Consumer security concerns for smart home products will continue to be a barrier to adoption in the U.S. and Europe, and these concerns can actually intensify with device adoption-71% of U.S. smart home households are concerned about cybersecurity. In 2020, companies will continue to focus on solutions for protecting consumer data. One big area of interest is protection on the network router, providing whole home solutions, which are very appealing to consumers.” “At CES we will see the traditional players introducing new DIY (do-it-yourself) products, as well as new players announcing new product features, services, and partnerships,” Parks adds. Smart access control Smart locks will be among the security products at CES 2020. For example, PassiveBolt, a lock company, will show the Shepherd Lock, a touch-enabled smart lock with enhanced security through sensors and AI. The add-on lock converts existing locksets into touch-activated devices. Another lock manufacturer is Kwikset, whose door locks and door hardware include Wi-Fi-enabled smart locks, Bluetooth-enabled smart locks, keyless and keyway-less locks and connected home technology. Video doorbells, including industry-innovator Ring, have been a hit in the consumer market. At CES, Ring will expand the mission to make neighborhoods safer by creating a “Ring of Security” around homes and communities with a suite of home security products and services. The “Neighbors by Ring” app enables affordable, complete, proactive home and neighborhood security. Homeguard offers a range of affordable CCTV solutions for home and small business DIY CCTV demonstrations DIY security systems are another market. Homeguard is a leading DIY consumer brand offering a range of affordable CCTV solutions for home and small business, including wired and wireless CCTV kits, smart cameras, home alarm systems and wire-free HD CCTV kits. Swann Communications is also at the forefront of surveillance and monitoring with new products developments including wire-free HD cameras and doorbells, professional CCTV video surveillance systems, and 1080p full HD systems with “True Detect” heat and motion sensing. AVTECH, and subsidiary YesGo Tech, will demonstrate a compact Wi-Fi home security set, a series of special cameras with face recognition, thermal detection and license plate recognition, customized central management software and a university ID tag that is compatible with access control, OEM and ODM opportunities. Security and automation solutions D-Link’s home networking, security and automation solutions will help consumers connect, view, share, entertain, work and play. SECO-LARM, manufacturer of a Room Occupancy Monitor that shows whether a room is in use, has a line of keypads and proximity readers with built-in Bluetooth for convenient access. Another smart home security solutions provider, Climax Technology, integrates wireless security, home automation, energy management, home emergency monitoring and live visual monitoring. Personal safety mobile application Manufacturers are positioning outdoor cameras as deterrents to theft before a burglary happens" WaryMe designs and develops a personal safety mobile application to improve a user’s security in public places, schools, transports and companies by addressing major risks such as terrorism attacks, intrusion, fire and even industrial accidents. An all-in-one mobile application integrates alerting, crisis management and mass notification features. “Market players are looking to expand beyond established smart home devices like smart thermostats and networked cameras to products like smart water leak detectors, smart pet feeders, and smart air purifiers,” says Elizabeth Parks. “Manufacturers are positioning outdoor cameras as deterrents to theft before a burglary happens. This trend is part of a broader security marketing effort to extend the perimeter of home security beyond traditional home access points.” “Familiarity with smart home devices lags behind familiarity with smart entertainment products; it even lags that of smart speakers, which are quite new in the market,” adds Parks. “In 2020, we will see players working to advance the visibility and marketing around device integration, and specifically focus on use case scenarios around safety, security, and convenience, which have always been the primary drivers of adoption of these types of products.”

Climax GX Cubic Smart Care Medical Alarm Brings Voice Control, Tele-Health Monitoring, Emergency Alarm Directly To Senior Citizens’ Homes
Climax GX Cubic Smart Care Medical Alarm Brings Voice Control, Tele-Health Monitoring, Emergency Alarm Directly To Senior Citizens’ Homes

In the aging trend of 21th century with rapid aging population and high healthcare costs are creating a growing demand for care at home, especially for seniors with long-term health conditions. Home care is moving towards tele-health monitoring and telemedicine, including video conferencing and remote monitoring technology to help increase caregiver efficiency while still providing constant convenience to the patients. Living independently and aging gracefully are the ideals that every individual seeks to pursue, and the challenge is to ensure that all people can age with dignity and security. Climax’s GX Cubic Smart Care Medical Alarm is an all-in-one wellness, and personal safety medical alarm solution, designed to help the elderly to manage their long-term health conditions, bridging medical health monitoring information to care providers/hospitals and create points of care to keep them safe in their own homes. GX Cubic medical alarm GX Cubic can be flexibly connected with third-party Bluetooth (BLE) healthcare sensors GX Cubic can be flexibly connected with third-party Bluetooth (BLE) healthcare sensors, like blood glucose monitor, pulse oximeter, blood pressure monitor, or weight for tracking health data and providing customized alerts to meet individual needs. The measurements can be automatically sent to a health professional who can review the results and continuously keep an eye on the patient’s health needs and provide early treatment as necessary. In addition to medical health monitoring, GX Cubic is also compatible with Pivotell Advance Automatic Pill Dispenser to keep secure of all pills, and remind the user to take the correct medicine at the pre-set time. The solution allows health professionals to monitor pill taking timely results and keep an eye on the patients’ treatment as needed. For situation when remote monitoring care given is insufficient and the user requires onsite assistance, GX Cubic can raise an emergency alarm to inform the caregiver or medical personnel for immediate action. Seniors can be assured that they are always being taken care of, and provide their family members with a peace of mind. Voice recognition solution Voice recognition has innovated over time and continues to advance, allowing products to become even more intuitive and easier to use. GX Cubic has built-in voice recognition and can activate an emergency call to care provider or central monitoring center by preset vocal commands or keywords. This allows seniors to receive emergency attention even in situations where they are immobilized or cannot manually reach the panic button. Working with the leading voice ecosystems Amazon Alexa and Google Home via cloud, GX Cubic also features voice control to activate home electronic devices, complete daily tasks, and seek help during emergencies. Voice over Internet Protocol With the VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) feature, GX Cubic users can also initiate two-way voice callsWith the VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) feature, GX Cubic users can also initiate two-way voice calls to contact their caregivers or family members at any time. With the additional add-on of DECT, GX Cubic can pair with voice extenders, talking pendants, call points, and voice extenders placed strategically around the home to create a safety net. Smart Home Automation Comprehensive elderly-friendly health care should also have a focus on preventive action to maintain a healthy ageing process. To realize independent living in a smart way, GX Cubic pairs with Zigbee or Z-Wave sensors to enable the whole-home control with various protocol-of-choice. GX Cubic can be programmed to turn on the hallway lights automatically when a sensor reports a senior’s movement in the middle of the night, to reduce a chance of falling; or automatically adjusting air conditioning when there is a sudden temperature-drop. The scenarios are unlimited to fit individual requirements, ensuring a safest living experience for the senior users. GX Cubic can also integrate IP security cameras and camera PIR motion sensors to deliver real-time visual monitoring and verification. When an emergency occurs, alerts are immediately sent to family members, and Monitoring Center to verify the event and sending immediate assistance as needed. Lastly, GX Cubic can support wireless sensor devices, allowing users to add in smoke detectors, water leakage sensors, and gas sensors to monitor environmental emergencies; and motion sensors, door contacts, sensor pad transmitters for inactivity monitoring, to build a healthier, safer independent living.

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