TDSi Unveils New Integrated Solutions At Essen
TDSi Unveils New Integrated Solutions At Essen

Security Essen saw access control specialist TDSi unveil its new VUgarde IP video solution, as well as demonstrate a wide selection of systems from its reader, controller and software ranges. Speaking after the show, TDSi's Managing Director, John Davies, said: "We were absolutely delighted with the exhibition and particularly the great feedback we received both from our existing customers and from the new contacts we made there. With visitors from Germany, the Benelux countries, Eastern Europe, Turkey and the Middle East, we had the opportunity to fully demonstrate the versatility, functionality and integration capabilities of our access control and video solutions. This was the largest stand we had ever taken at Essen and it gave us a tremendous platform to showcase the breadth and depth of our range." At the heart of the company's stand was a preview of the new VUgarde system. Developed to deliver powerful yet straightforward surveillance, the cost-effective VUgarde range offers a suite of products for all requirements, from an entry level, stand-alone system capable of controlling up to 16 cameras, to VUgarde PRO, capable of managing hundreds of cameras from multiple video servers. Visitors saw demonstrations of both stand-alone and integrated options, and were particularly impressed with the functionality and capability of VUgarde when integrated with EXgarde, which enables users to seamlessly integrate video and access control. EXgarde is the company's fully featured access management software solution; proven in projects throughout the world, EXgarde provides users with a wide range of integration, control and security management functionality. Fully compatible with Microsoft Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate software suites, as well as Microsoft Vista Business and Ultimate, EXgarde provides flexible expansion and integration options, with a wide range of building management systems including CCTV, intruder, fire alarm, lift control and energy management. John Davies concluded: "As one of the world's premier exhibitions, Security Essen provides a great opportunity for us to showcase our products to an international audience. With our full product development programme continuing to deliver innovative systems and solutions, we're already thinking ahead to the next event!"  See image with caption

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TDSi Unveils VUgarde PRO Edition
TDSi Unveils VUgarde PRO Edition

VUgarde PRO is TDSi's range of powerful IP video surveillance solutions, providing full management control of live and recorded surveillance feeds and alarm systems. VUgarde can operate in stand-alone mode, or as part of a fully integrated system and provides a number of options to suit all project and application requirements.The VUgarde PRO client interface is extremely user friendly to operate and easy to install and configure. It uses drag and drop functionality throughout and display multiple live and recorded video stream. It has been designed to complement TDSi's other long established access management products to help provide strong integrated access control.VUgarde PRO delivers many user benefits from fast detection of potential threats or emergencies, which can enable operators to clear areas and start a security procedure in a short space of time, to various levels of security personnel with intuitive and reliable control, enabling operators to ensure that the correct personnel can gain entry whilst being mindful of emergency exits.TDSi's VUgarde range also includes:VUgarde Site, which provides everything you need to programme your VUgarde PRO video management system through a highly visual user interface. VUgarde NVR, a Microsoft .NET framework based service which is a high-end enterprise level Networked Video Recorder application capable of handling up to 32 streams of IP video.VUgarde WALL, a surveillance solution for a central monitoring and control room applications.VUgarde PLAY, a real time streaming protocol (RTSP) which is used to video streams from the VUgarde suite of products and also compliment any RTSP stream.VUgarde TOUCH, the latest in IP video control that connects easily and manages live and recorded video simply by touching the screen. For further information on TDSi's IP Video Surveillance Solutions please visit www.tdsi.co.uk or phone 01202 724535.

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TDSi Launches New VUgarde2 VMS Surveillance Solution
TDSi Launches New VUgarde2 VMS Surveillance Solution

TDSi, a global leader in access control systems for all sizes of businesses and organizations announces the launch of its new VUgarde2 IP CCTV software suite and the associated range of security surveillance products. VUgarde2 is designed to offer a portfolio of integrated IP surveillance products that offer greater flexibility and systems evolution with regards to monitoring of security, including direct integration with TDSi’s powerful EXgarde Access Control software to be included later in the year. Individual elements in the VUgarde product range include the VUgarde2 VMS (video management system), VUgarde Full Client (a comprehensive user interface to the VMS platform), VUgarde Anywhere (which allows users to access live and recorded images on a variety of devices including smart phones, tablets and laptops) and VUgarde ANPR (an automated number plate recognition application which can be added to the VUgarde VMS). VUgarde hardware includes a full range of IP cameras, video encoders and video capture cards (to allow the retention and connection of existing analog cameras), USB keyboards (that allow users to easily control fully functional cameras) and a wide range of client and server hardware which is available in both tower and rack formats. Managing Director of TDSi, John Davies, commented, “TDSi is dedicated to offering total flexibility and integration opportunities, so VUgarde2 has been designed to offer this whilst providing a reliable and easy-to-use interface. At the heart of the new product range is the VUgarde2 VMS Software suite which brings together the different parts of the CCTV system to offer a truly combined and fully scalable solution. VUgarde2 gives a firm basis for organizations to build the security and surveillance system that exactly fits their specific needs.” The VUgarde2 VMS excels from having a powerful yet straightforward approach to digital video management. From its modular construction through to its intuitive operator graphical user interface it simplifies the design, installation and commissioning of complete IP CCTV surveillance systems. Where legacy analog cameras need to be retained, smart encoders and video capture cards are available to maximize the previous investment. VUgarde2 is available in two editions (Express and PRO) to suit the project requirements. Both editions have a built-in simplified user management system that provides user authentication, multi-level auditing and group based permissions to limit access to permitted personnel. With the capability to be fully integrated with TDSi’s EXgarde version 4 access control platform, VUgarde2 VMS offers a single platform solution to simplify the security management of any site. Operators can quickly select their preferred camera layout and sequences whilst being alerted both visually and audibly on an alarm incident. The inbuilt dynamic multi-layered mapping application assists the operator in quickly selecting the most relevant camera. Specific benefits of using VUgarde2 software include: A simple licensing system - Buy only what you need. A modular and flexible platform - VUgarde2 can be tailored to suit any sized project and is flexible enough to expand as desired. Multiple setup wizards - Reduce installation and commissioning time. Drag & Drop functionality - Minimal operator training required. Intuitive Graphical User Interface - Simple to use with a focus on common user needs, yet powerful enough to be flexible for the largest installations. EXgarde access control integration - Allows complete integration with TDSi’s powerful access control software. Multi-level mapping - Provides full map management and drill-down, ensuring operators can quickly select the most relevant camera. Powerful event search - Quickly identifies relevant footage from the archive. VUgarde2 Anywhere - A platform agnostic application to view live and recorded CCTV footage anywhere on any smart device. VUgarde2 ANPR - A powerful optional application to detect, recognize and register vehicle number plates. For more information on VUgarde2, TDSi and all its products please visit www.tdsi.co.uk/vugarde2 or call 01202 723 535. For further information please contact TDSi’s press office on tdsi@mccint.com. 

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Video Surveillance software - Expert commentary

Fighting Illicit Trade With Artificial Intelligence
Fighting Illicit Trade With Artificial Intelligence

AI has opened doors to many transformation opportunities and increasingly minimised many risks  -- personal and economic -- that are alarming today. And illicit trade is one of those pains AI can offer a promising solution against. Illicit trade is a serious threat and problem that affects governments and societies on every level. While governments lose financial funds in tax revenues, thriving businesses are losing potential customers, and customers are getting tricked into purchasing counterfeit, low-quality products. Transnational organized crime generates revenue of $2.2 trillion through transnational criminal organizations, complicit corrupt facilitators, and other threat areas. The list of criminal activities is long and involves such horrific crimes as trafficking of narcotics, opioids, arms, humans, fake medicines and other counterfeit and pirated goods; illegal tobacco and alcohol; illegally-harvested timber, wildlife, and fish; pillaged oil, diamonds, gold, and other natural resources and precious minerals; stolen antiquities; and other contraband or valuable items sold across streets, social media, online marketplaces, and the dark web. In short, illicit trade is a contributing cause to large-scale insecurity and instability across markets. AI-driven technologies Here is where revolutionary AI-driven technologies come in, with their capability to fight illicit trade across markets. AI technologies in this specific application promise to help build safer and more secure communities in the future. There are a few ways that AI can support the ongoing fight against illicit trade on a global scale in a tangible way. Transnational organized crime generates revenue of $2.2 trillion For financial transactions at risk of fraud and money laundering, 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. Among these documents widely in circulation, most have an unstructured and inconsistent format -- from invoices to insurance documentation -- are a complex system to tackle; in this whirlwind of pages, the likelihood of non-compliant and misrepresented figures to go by unnoticed. But this is also where AI can thrive as solutions become a necessity, enhancing humans’ capabilities of identifying fraud risks in the early stages. Relying on natural language processing, the technology can begin interpreting the text from the scanned and digitised documents in order to process trade information at high speed. In this context, AI-powered solutions are capable of comparing, contrasting document information and identify anomalies worth looking into further. By automating a large portion of the process, AI-driven technology allows the staff to focus on more pressing, high-involvement issues that require human judgement while saving time on the time-consuming manual work of analyzing documents by hand. Identifying covert interactions between criminals As criminal networks become increasingly intricate in their illegal operations, cutting-edge AI technology is crucial in the battle against it. In 2019, EU launched a project with the goal to deploy advanced AI technology and robots to identify smuggling across the borders of Portugal, Estonia, Italy, Greece, Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary.  With the help of AI, it will be possible to send drones and autonomous vehicles to the most dubious border areas in order to enforce border control and detect smugglers quickly and efficiently. Illicit trade triggers a chain reaction of negative impact across industries, governments and individuals The issues the EU is trying to address through the project include drug and weapon smuggling, as well as human trafficking. From tight border control tracking crossings to communication monitoring to identify covert interactions between criminals on both sides of the border, the project is one among many that will expand the scope of solutions to the illicit trade problems today. AI’s contribution is significant on many levels: from predicting crime and threats to safeguarding public health and safety (in face of human trafficking, counterfeit medicines, and toxic products), these are simply inklings of major shifts that AI technology promises for the future of the battle against illicit trade. So why is fighting illicit trade so crucial? Here are a few reasons why AI’s role in fighting this global issue is crucial. In a world where customers run the risk of being deceived and tricked into buying counterfeit products, companies who provide the original products suffer through the loss of revenue and market share. The same companies are also robbed of their intellectual property and proprietary data. Furthermore, people who are employed in these companies run the risk of losing their jobs as a result of revenue and market share loss. And finally, the last straw is the loss of brand integrity and reputation to the need to compete with low-quality, sometimes even dangerous counterfeit products. Just like a domino effect, illicit trade triggers a chain reaction of negative impact across industries, governments and individuals. And it’s time for AI to step in and stop it.

Edge Computing, AI and Thermal Imaging – The Future of Smart Security
Edge Computing, AI and Thermal Imaging – The Future of Smart Security

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. 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. With 4K-compliant cameras projected to make up over 24% of all network cameras shipped by 2023 – there is a fast-growing desire for reliable storage on-board security cameras. The question for businesses is: do they look to break up their existing smart video network, by separating and compartmentalising cameras to handle data requirements, or do they increase its storage capabilities? As some people begin to venture out and return to work following initial COVID-19 measures, we are also seeing demand for thermal imaging technology increase. New technology like this combined with more of these always-on systems being rolled out, means organizations will need to carefully consider their smart video strategy. Newer edge computing will play an important role in capturing, collecting, and analyzing data and there are some key trends you can expect to see as a result of this evolution. 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 analyze it and deduce a lot of valuable information in real-time, instead of post-event. Edge computing and smart security As public cloud adoption grew, companies and organizations saw the platform as a centralized location for big data. However, recently there’s been opposition to that trend. Instead we are now seeing data processed at the edge, rather than in the cloud. There is one main reason for this change in preference: latency. Newer edge computing will play an important role in capturing, collecting, and analyzing data Latency is an important consideration when trying to carry out real-time pattern recognition. It’s very difficult for cameras to process data – 4K surveillance video recorded 24/7 – if it has to go back to a centralized data center hundreds of miles away. This data analysis needs to happen quickly in order to be timely and applicable to dynamic situations, such as public safety. By storing relevant data at the edge, AI inferencing can happen much faster. Doing so can lead to safer communities, more effective operations, and smarter infrastructure. UHD and storage AI-enabled applications and capabilities, such as pattern recognition, depend on high-definition resolutions such as 4K – also known as Ultra High Definition (UHD). This detailed data has a major impact on storage – both the capacity and speeds at which it needs to be written, and the network. Compared to HD, 4K video has much higher storage requirements and we even have 8K on the horizon. As we know, 4K video has four times the number of pixels as HD video. In addition, 4K compliant video supports 8, 10, and 12 bits per channel that translate to 24-, 30- or 36-bit color depth per pixel. A similar pattern holds for HD — more color using 24 bits or less color using 10 or 12 bits in color depth per pixel. Altogether, there is up to a 5.7x increase in bits generated by 4K vs. 1080 pixel video. Larger video files place new demands on data infrastructure for both video production and surveillance. Which means investing in data infrastructure becomes a key consideration when looking into smart security. Always-on connectivity Whether designing solutions that have limited connectivity or ultra-fast 5G capabilities, most smart security solutions need to operate 24/7, regardless of their environment. Yet, on occasion, the underlying hardware and software systems fail. In the event of this, it is important to establish a failover process to ensure continued operation or restore data after a failure, including everything from traffic control to sensors to camera feeds and more. Consider the example of a hospital with dozens or even over a hundred cameras connected to a centralized recorder via IP. If the Ethernet goes down, no video can be captured. Such an event could pose a serious threat to the safety and security of hospital patients and staff. For this reason, microSD cards are used in cameras to enable continuous recording. Software tools – powered by AI – can then “patch” missing data streams with the content captured on the card to ensure the video stream can be viewed chronologically with no content gaps. Thermal imaging Health and safety is the number one priority for all organizations as people return to work and public spaces. Some organizations are deploying thermal imaging to help screen individuals for symptoms as they return. Organizations that operate with warehouses, depots and assembly lines will traditionally have large amounts of cameras located outside of the entrance. With thermal imaging smart video in place, these cameras can now serve a dual purpose as a screening device. The thermal imaging technology is capable of detecting elevated body temperatures, with 10-25 workers being scanned in one shot, from one camera – making it an efficient and accurate process. This way, staff can use the information to help identify people who may need further screening, testing, and/or isolation before returning to work. There are many more types of cameras being used today, such as body cameras, dashboard cameras, and new Internet of Things (IoT) devices While this may not increase data storage requirements, it can change your retention policies and practices. Smart security today is about utilising AI and edge computing, to deliver an always-on, high-resolution video provision that can help keep people safe 24/7. These trends increase the demands and importance of monitoring, which means requirements of the supporting data infrastructure improve to match that, including the ability to proactively manage the infrastructure to help ensure reliable operation. Companies need to make sure they have considered all the storage and policy challenges as part of their smart security strategy for the future.  

The New Marriage Between AI and Stadiums
The New Marriage Between AI and Stadiums

Stadiums around the world are still paralyzed from the effects of COVID-19. Fans and spectators in masses have been absent from stadiums since April and there doesn’t seem to be a concrete plan on how or when they’ll be able to return to near capacity. The NBA recently opted to form a bubble philosophy concept in Disney’s facilities, although it’s been a relative success, it’s also been a $200 million temporary solution. This then begs the question: How long can stadiums survive like this without spectator’s present? History tells us that stadiums, venues and sport recover from disasters, so what can stadiums do to speed up the process? This is the catalyst for AI to be integrated on mass level to stadiums around the world. AI is the answer AI’s role in getting fans and spectators back is huge, through capabilities such as: Social Distance Monitoring Crowd Scanning/Metrics Facial Recognition Fever Detection Track & Trace Providing Behavioural Analytics Technologies such as IREX.ai is now working alongside National Leagues, Franchises and Governing Bodies to implement AI surveillance software into their CCTV/surveillance cameras. This is now creating a more collaborative effort from the operations team in stadiums, rather than purely security. Stadiums around the world are still paralyzed from the effects of COVID-19 AI surveillance software such as IREX.ai when implemented into the surveillance cameras can be accessed by designated users on any device and on any browser platform. Crowd metrics Arming stadiums with AI-powered surveillance tools can detect crowd metrics such as “people counting” and “group statistics”. This ensures stadium personnel can monitor social distancing with precision, accuracy and immediately. Alerts can be set up throughout parts of the stadium to alert senior staff members when overcrowding can appear with real time videos, analytics and photos to their hand-held device, such as a smartphone. Fever detection Thermal cameras have been implemented throughout facilities including stadiums and are helping assist to spot people with elevated temperatures. What IREX.ai implements is an alert system, coupled with facial recognition of any individual(s) that read an elevated body temperature. This alert system then provides security and health officials with a photo of the individual with the elevated body temperature, meaning staff can react quicker to the situation prevent this individual from entry. Pandemic monitoring by facial recognition  Thermal cameras have been implemented throughout facilities including stadiums and are helping assist to spot people with elevated temperatures Through facial recognition, staff members will be able to locate individuals through simply uploading a photo. It has never been easier to find a person of interest. With masks becoming an everyday part of society, facial recognition has come under scrutiny regarding the accuracy when a mask is worn. Irex.ai still maintains a 96% accuracy with individuals wearing masks and can set up alerts for any individuals not wearing a mask. Another important aspect of facial recognition is finding persons of interest quickly through technology like IREX.ai’s “searchveillance”. The future is here. Designated staff can track a person from when they enter the stadium by simply uploading their photograph. An example of how this can assist stadium personnel is to help relocate lost children inside the stadium with their guardians/parents when they are separated. Another attribute would be any individuals banned from entering the stadium would trigger alerts once they appear under surveillance, a fantastic collaborative tool to use with Law Enforcement.    Return on investment With security solutions, one of the biggest issues with any security investment is a lack of an ROI. This is where AI security is breaking the mould. The ability to provide business analytics, consumer/fan behaviours, traffic patterns, etc, allows other departments within the organization to gain vital information that can assist with their strategies and practices. Stadium security will never be the same in a post-COVID world, so why will its practices stay the same? AI & Stadiums is no longer the future, it’s the 2020 solution.

Latest TDSi news

How is AI Changing the Security Market?
How is AI Changing the Security Market?

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?

Apprentice Product Engineer Oscar Johnson Joins The Team At TDSi’s Poole-Based Headquarters
Apprentice Product Engineer Oscar Johnson Joins The Team At TDSi’s Poole-Based Headquarters

Integrated security manufacturer TDSi is pleased to announce its first higher-level Apprentice, trainee Product Engineer Oscar Johnson. Oscar is currently studying for a Higher National Certificate (HNC) at Bournemouth and Poole College for two years, but will continue as a Degree Apprentice for a further four years, with a permanent role at TDSi alongside his studies. TDSi’s Managing Director, John Davies commented, “It’s great to welcome Oscar to TDSi. He’s the first candidate to take up a higher-level apprenticeship at TDSi and he’ll be a great asset to our development team, as we ramp up product development and augment products in the GARDiS family and ecosystem." Skills for security This is a great opportunity for me and there is so much variation and job rotation within my new role" "The security industry is leading the way on the apprenticeship front, with initiatives through Skills for Security (part of the BSIA), and TDSi is excited about the energy and innovative thinking that apprentices bring to the table as our ‘Boomers’ retire.” Having studied Engineering at college for the last year alongside his previous role in Occupational Health, 22-year-old Oscar is excited by his new role and the opportunities at TDSi. He stated, “This is a great opportunity for me and there is so much variation and job rotation within my new role. I am working within the Development Team, mainly alongside our Product Engineer, Russell Marande, to gain valuable experience and training in this cutting-edge technology company.” Future of security Oscar comes from nearby Bournemouth and has spent most of his life in the area, apart from a year living on the Gold Coast in Australia. “Living in Australia was an amazing experience and tied in well with my other great passions of surfing and photography. I still enjoy surfing and continue to sell photos through my Instagram.” With an eye on the future of technology, Oscar is also excited to be joining a technology company which is helping to shape the future of security. “It is fascinating finding out how TDSi is adapting towards the future and seeing what great new products will be released before they are unveiled to the public. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for me at TDSi.”

Are Privacy Concerns Stifling Innovation in Security?
Are Privacy Concerns Stifling Innovation in Security?

Facial recognition is the latest technology to be targeted because of concerns about privacy. If such concerns cloud the public perception, they can be harmful to technology markets. Whether the concerns are genuine or based on misinformation is often beside the point; the practical damage has already been done. But beyond market demand, what is the impact of privacy concerns on technology innovation? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Are privacy concerns stifling innovation in security and related markets? 

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