Video Surveillance software - Expert commentary

Can CCTV Become A More Effective Tool?
Can CCTV Become A More Effective Tool?

We all know that having CCTV around your home can help to protect you and your family. Without CCTV, you could end up in danger and an intruder could get away with breaking into your house, hurting your loved ones and stealing your possessions. Similarly, without CCTV in the office, you’ll be leaving yourself open to all kinds of damage and could lose a lot of equipment in the process. In short, making sure you have CCTV is important for both home and business security. However, it can be improved to become a more effective system so that you’re better protected, and can even deter a potential intruder without having to panic. In our world of ever-changing technology, we’re able to upgrade and enhance our CCTV systems so they can become a monitored system. Remote CCTV monitoring is an ideal way to protect everyone and everything whether you’re at home or at a workplace. What is remote CCTV monitoring? For a long time, CCTV was one of the best ways to keep your home, the office and people safe. But people started to notice that it would only deter people so much of the time and often the cameras were ignored by intruders. They would just cover their faces and hope for the best as they steal from a home, office or any other premises. Remote CCTV monitoring is a system that can loop into your existing CCTV, or come preinstalled with a new system. This technology sends a feed to a control room full of trained operators that are on call 24/7. Within this control room, operators are able to respond to any sort of distress call or unauthorised movement on the property line.  How does it work? Remote CCTV monitoring works by attaching to a live feed of your CCTV system, existing or new, so that the signal and images can be passed to a team of operators. These operators are on hand 24/7 so that if there is a problem, you know that you're safe in the hands of a specialist team. The specialist team has been trained to mitigate the chances of somebody breaking into your home when the system is triggered; similarly they call the local authorities instantly so that the potential intruder has less time to flee the scene. This is especially important if an intruder is already inside your property because they have less time to steal your items and leave. Without CCTV in the office, you’ll be leaving yourself open to all kinds of damage and could lose a lot of equipment in the process One of the biggest questions that revolve around remote CCTV monitoring is the idea of operators watching the CCTV at all times. Luckily most remote CCTV monitoring systems will incorporate a motion detection system to accompany your CCTV. Motion detection offers the ability to alert a control room if there is an unauthorised entry to the property line. These motion detection systems are state-of-the-art and so, depending on the system that you choose, they can watch over your property from a number of angles. Once the motion detection system has been triggered and the alert has been sent to the control room, then and only then will the operators get involved. This means that until the motion detection system has been triggered, nobody will watch your live CCTV feed. After one of the systems has been triggered, one of the specialist operators will instantly jump into action. This means that they can take different measures to deter any potential intruder and make sure that they do everything in their power to stop any damage or theft from the premises. In addition to the motion detection system and CCTV, you are able to opt for a public address (PA) system too. This means that an operator is able to shout commands through the PA system and potentially scare away any intruder. The intruder will also be warned about the fact that local authorities have already been called to the location.  Remote monitoring versus traditional CCTV Motion detection offers the ability to alert a control room if there is an unauthorised entry to the property line Having a monitored CCTV system means that you're able to better protect yourself, your business, employees and even your loved ones. Whether you're at home or in the office, having someone looking over your shoulder protecting your every move is something that can be appreciated by everybody. The biggest problem with just having traditional CCTV, is that it is a reactive system. This means that rather than stopping crime, a CCTV system just records it. While the thought is that having a CCTV camera visible can deter some intruders, there's no real evidence to suggest that it stops anybody; anyone can simply cover their face and carry on breaking into your home, office or even your car. As mentioned, remote CCTV monitoring is going to tackle that problem and make sure that someone is on hand to protect you at all times.

Thermal Cameras and Smart Cities: Preventing COVID-19 in Public Places
Thermal Cameras and Smart Cities: Preventing COVID-19 in Public Places

With the pandemic still in full swing and no certainty as to when exactly it will come to an end, the world has been battling anxiety for months now. And with each day, circumstances change quickly and almost make it impossible to predict what will happen next, how events will unfold, and what actions to take in light of a new situation. But one thing is certain: the world has been shut down and paralyzed for way too long, and the eventual reopening is unavoidable – in fact, it’s well under way. In this situation, what is possible to control is how the world will continue reopening – and specifically, how to ensure the safest possible reopening that will ensure the return of some degree of normalcy to people’s lives and business operations, while also managing the risk of COVID’s spread in the most efficient way. Our highly digitised, technologically advanced world This is when the power of technology comes to rescue the day: what truly sets the global crisis we face today apart from other calamities that humanity has encountered over year is the fact that it has developed in a highly digitised, technologically advanced world where each day brings about innovations with a sole purpose to make daily life and operations easier and more streamlined. And among these, the star of the past decade has been artificial intelligence. The world has been shut down and paralyzed for way too long, and the eventual reopening is unavoidable – in fact, it’s well under way While AI has many avenues of introducing efficiency and fast problem-solving, there is one specific application that will further fuel the reopening of the world and successfully keep the spread of the virus abate. This “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. With such a level of sophistication that can ensure uninterrupted monitoring and analysis of large public spaces, these AI technologies can ideally operate best as cloud solutions to ensure a collaborative network with maximum scalability and widespread implementation. As these technologies increase in ubiquity and find their way into daily operations of businesses globally, the cost of the smart solutions will decrease proportionally to the growth of their reach. There are some highly specific ways to create this collaborative network of interconnected safety tools in the current climate. Here are some applications that 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. Maintaining social distancing practices The most important step everyone around the world has taken to contribute to the effort of slowing the spread of the virus has been social distancing. A six-foot-distance has become a new social norm that has quickly been adopted globally and become a habit to people who are naturally used to being close to others and socialising without giving distance a second thought. The star of the past decade has been artificial intelligence So, it is natural that such distancing measures take time to get accustomed to – and it is also natural that individuals may forget about them from time to time. To help maintain the six-foot distance between people at all times and give them slight nudges to keep the rule top of their minds, AI video technology can be trained to estimate the distance between individuals in public and commercial areas and identify the cases in which people get too close to each other. By notifying local merchants or authorities about such cases, the system can help ensure the safety of everyone in the area at all times while positively reinforcing the public to gradually get more accustomed to maintaining the distance and thus helping stop the spread of the virus. Detecting the virus through facial recognition Perhaps the straightforward application of such high-level technology is using video surveillance to identify persons of interest who have tested positive for the virus. Modern AI has the ability to identify facial features and characteristics with a unique level of granularity, making it possible to identify individuals whose records show they have antibodies from those who can be potential carriers of the virus. After the initial differentiation and identification, the system can then notify the employers and employees of the facility about the results of the conducted analysis and the pursuant results, allowing them to be more vigilant and take action where necessary to ensure a safe experience for everyone. PPE reinforcement Wearing a mask or some sort of face coverage in public spaces and especially within facilities (such as stores, for instance) has been - and will continue to be - a requirement for maintaining a safe and healthy environment for people to continue with their day-to-day lives and businesses to resume regular operations. To this extent, the object detection and identification abilities of smart cameras can further reinforce this requirement and ensure that the absence of protective equipment doesn’t go unnoticed.  Essentially, these cameras can easily identify if an individual has coverage at any given point of time or not, notifying the local authorities about any risks immediately and helping them maintain necessary safety measures without having to interrupt their workflow or worry about missing a visitor without a mask. Detecting high temperature One of the key (and the most widespread) symptoms of COVID-19 is a high fever - a certain indicator of whether an individual may have been infected with the virus or not. While identifying fever with a regular human eye is nearly impossible, AI can do so at a fraction of time by quickly scanning body temperatures of any incoming individuals and determine whether it’s above CDC’s recommended temperature of 100.4F in order to determine the risk factor and notify the local authorities to take action. Modern AI has the ability to identify facial features and characteristics with a unique level of granularity This technology is a good tactic to objectively assess potential risks that come with elevated temperatures - and sometimes, the people themselves might not realize they might (unconsciously) be carriers of the virus and thus endanger the safety of others in their vicinity. The technology is yet another step towards ensuring a safer reopening of the global economy and a more streamlined way of getting back on track while minimizing the risk of spreading the virus further. It’s not all about the theory  We have tested the described approaches in our own R&D campus in Europe. The latest release of the IREX cloud enables remote fever detection and monitoring of social isolation and mask policies with AI. We have integrated thermal cameras to detect people with elevated temperature and CCTV cameras for identification and notifying those who potentially ill. In case of any health threat, the venue manager gets an instant message with a picture and exact location. These preventive steps helped our employees return to the office months earlier than it's happening in other countries. Moreover, personnel coming back to the office by their own wish as now they feel a virus-free environment in the campus - even safer than in their own homes. Now we are launching a pilot project for a well-known pharmacy chain in Florida, USA. With the help of a Computer Vision platform, staff will be able to divide customer traffic into those with normal body temperature and those who come in with elevated temperatures, as well as effectively monitor social distance norms. The goal of our potential client is to maximize the safety of customers in the post-pandemic period. Also, IREX is already deployed across hundreds of locations in the UK and will add health monitoring capability soon.

The Role Of Building Systems To Ensure Safety As Employees Return To Work
The Role Of Building Systems To Ensure Safety As Employees Return To Work

Returning to work after the global pandemic will not be business as usual, and security systems are an important asset when it comes to helping to keep occupants and buildings safe. 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. 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. “While the ‘new normal’ is still being defined, we believe there will be a greater focus on creating healthier environments while also complying with new regulations,” says Marcus Logan, Global Offering Leader, Honeywell Commercial Security. “Temperature, humidity, energy efficiency, security, safety, comfort, productivity, and demonstrating compliance with regulations are all a part of a healthy building.” For example, social distancing is a new concept for the workplace. How do you make that happen in an open work setting, in breakrooms, elevator lobbies and meeting spaces? Optimized systems create healthier environments Anxious employees will need reassurance about returning to the workplace Building owners will need to look at how they can optimize their systems – or deploy new ones – to create a healthier environment. Building technologies, like those provided by Honeywell's Healthy Buildings solutions, provide building owners with more control over critical factors to encourage sustained compliance with changing building standards, safety guidelines, government-issued regulations, and a company's risk management policies. These solutions also provide transparency for occupants into a building's status, says Logan. Hygiene will be a critical issue: People will want to know that the spaces are ready for their return. Increased cleaning procedures and schedules will evolve, and a way will be needed to demonstrate the procedures are effective and that they have been strictly adhered to. Identifying ways to measure effectiveness of sanitisation and track compliance to the procedures will be a key challenge to solve. This is a space that will evolve significantly in the coming months and years, says Logan. Access control and video analytics Contact tracing is a new requirement in some businesses, and security technology – like access control and video analytics with advanced reporting – can help. Access control technology integrated with video analytics can be used to trace occupant movements within a facility. These technologies capture data that can be used with advanced reporting to provide a digital footprint of where a person has been within a facility and if they may have been exposed to someone identified as being infected with a contagious virus. Building owners can then proactively notify exposed individuals evolve to self-quarantine and minimize further spread of an infection. Video analytics can help to predict where and when occupants encounter each other Anxious employees will need reassurance about returning to the workplace. They will not only seek confidence that the building is optimized for a healthier environment but also that processes are in place to quickly identify and respond to potential issues. Transparency and visibility into how the building works and the health of the environment will help to reassure occupants returning to the workplace. “One way to do this is to share building analytics with occupants – to help them understand factors about the indoor air quality or occupancy density,” says Logan. Controlled health, safety and security Honeywell’s solutions provide building owners with more control over critical health, safety and security factors to encourage sustained compliance with changing building standards, safety guidelines, government-issued regulations and a company’s risk management policies, Logan adds. Visibility into how the building works and the health of the environment will help to reassure occupants returning to the workplace Every day there is new information coming from the medical and scientific community about COVID-19, and the building industry is just starting to learn what it all means. Logan warns that there is no single solution that will keep every environment healthy and safe. A good strategy features deploying a combination of solutions, optimising systems and being vigilant to make sure that companies are sustaining compliance to new and changing regulations, says Logan. “Today more than ever we must be mindful of the changing culture of how buildings are managed by making apparent the need to be mindful of health and well-being in all aspects of our lives,” says Logan. Honeywell has developed outcome-based solutions that allow building owners to transparently address building quality factors while supporting their business continuity needs in the uncertain environment. “We’re giving them the data they need to confidently reassure their employees to accelerate their business operations,” he adds.

Latest March Networks Corporation news

March Networks Helps Enterprise Businesses To Manage Health And Safety Regulations During The COVID-19 Pandemic
March Networks Helps Enterprise Businesses To Manage Health And Safety Regulations During The COVID-19 Pandemic

March Networks®, a video surveillance and video-based business intelligence provider, is pleased to announce a new solution to help enterprise businesses manage new health and safety compliance regulations in the COVID-19 era. The company’s Health Compliance Solution delivers a suite of new features to help banks, retailers, restaurants, schools and other businesses monitor and measure occupancy in real time, rapidly detect individuals who may pose a potential risk, and ensure compliance with new cleaning and sanitization procedures. Data analytic platform The solution, based on March Networks’ highly flexible data analytic platform called Searchlight, combines data from video surveillance cameras and third-party sensors to alert operators in real time of potential compliance violations. The solution was recently selected for rollout by a major European supermarket chain with more than 150 locations. The first release of the Health Compliance Solution includes: Real-Time Occupancy Management – Using Searchlight, businesses can count the number of people entering their locations in real time and visualize occupancy data in multiple ways, both locally and from a central location. Occupancy alerts can be displayed on a local, color-coded video client or public view monitor, a mobile phone or tablet or via a smart lighting system, which can change color to indicate when a business is nearing or has reached its maximum capacity. Thermal imaging cameras All visual indicators of occupancy are easy to setup, custom configurable and displayed in real time Once capacity has been reached, video clients display the maximum count number with a red background and Searchlight simultaneously sends an email or SMS message to a manager so they can react in real time to close their doors. For large enterprise businesses, color-coded occupancy data from multiple sites can be viewed together from one central location, along with associated surveillance video. All visual indicators of occupancy are easy to setup, custom configurable and displayed in real time. Data can also be viewed historically via Searchlight’s reports and dashboards, allowing managers to identify trends and more easily pinpoint high-risk locations. Real-Time Alerts on Elevated Body Temperatures – COVID-19 has generated immense interest in thermal imaging cameras as a tool to identify individuals with elevated body temperatures. Searchlight’s open platform integrates with many of the third-party thermal cameras to send real-time email and SMS alerts when an alert is triggered. Email notifications include a video snapshot of the person that triggered the alert, so managers can quickly identify the individual and take appropriate action. Potential risk factor Searchlight logs all alerts centrally so managers can search and sort alerts by location and camera, view data in chart or graph format, identify trends and rapidly respond to locations presenting a potential risk factor for virus transmission. Audits can also validate that employees are wearing masks and gloves Health & Safety Audits – Leveraging Searchlight’s convenient Security and Operations Audit features, businesses can automatically capture video of new health and safety procedures to ensure compliance with re-opening rules. Examples include a video database of employees washing their hands at prescribed intervals, and regularly cleaning high-touch surfaces. Audits can also validate that employees are wearing masks and gloves and that physical barriers like sneeze guards are in place. Improving health and safety “COVID-19 has created unprecedented challenges, and at March Networks we’re doing all we can to help business owners get back to work while instilling confidence in consumers that these organizations have taken the necessary steps to keep them safe,” said Peter Strom, President & CEO, March Networks. “With Searchlight as the centerpiece, this solution equips businesses to quickly make informed decisions that can help them reduce risk and further improve health and safety moving forward. We will continue to work closely with our customers to add more functionality to the platform as new regulations emerge.” The March Networks Health Compliance Solution is available starting this month on flexible one, three or five-year service terms. In Canada and the U.S., the solution will also be available as a hosted service, offering convenient monthly invoicing options.

March Networks Unveils AI-Enabled ME6 Series IP Cameras For Accurate Detection Of Security Incidents And Threats
March Networks Unveils AI-Enabled ME6 Series IP Cameras For Accurate Detection Of Security Incidents And Threats

March Networks, a globally renowned video security and video-based business intelligence solutions, announced that it is pleased to introduce its ME6 Series IP Cameras, a new 6 MP camera line powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI). ME6 Series IP Cameras Incorporating advanced system-on-chip (SoC) technology from California-based company, Ambarella, the ME6 Series use Deep Neural Network processing power to accurately distinguish between people and vehicles. This built-in intelligence is combined with next-generation security analytics for the most accurate, real-time analysis and detection of events. Organizations can enhance security and rapidly respond to incidents with the cameras’ highly accurate notifications on perimeter and zone breaches, loitering, and atypical activity involving vehicles. The ME6 Series’ analytics are embedded on the cameras for convenient out-of-the-box use – no training required. AI-powered analytics The ME6 Series IP Cameras are March Networks most intelligent cameras to date “The ME6 Series IP Cameras are March Networks most intelligent cameras to date,” said Nathan Dinning, Edge Devices Product Manager for March Networks. He adds, “The AI models used in these devices are designed to accurately detect both people and vehicles. This means other objects, for example - a tree branch blowing in the wind, will not inadvertently trigger an alarm. This level of intelligence can greatly reduce false alarms and allow customers to more rapidly and accurately respond to potential threats.” Digital Overlap High Dynamic Range (DOL- HDR) In addition to AI-powered analytics, the ME6 Series also incorporate Digital Overlap High Dynamic Range (DOL- HDR), the latest in HDR sensor technology for superior image quality in highly contrasted lighting conditions. DOL- HDR combines three separate exposures in every frame, delivering only the sharpest, most colorful and well-lit images for customers. Additionally, the cameras offer a new Region of Interest (ROI) feature that allows users to adjust compression levels within identified zones and save on storage. Using this feature, customers can identify zones of high or low importance in the camera’s field of view and apply additional compression in those zones. When combined with March Networks’ existing Low Bit Rate (LBR) feature, the ROI feature can help customers reduce data rates by as much as 65%. Organizations can choose from two distinct ME6 Series models including: The ME6 IR Dome, an indoor/outdoor dome with a 3.6-11mm motorized lens with P-Iris The ME6 IR DuraBullet, purpose-built for outdoor environments, featuring a 2.7-12mm varifocal lens with P-Iris and remote zoom and focus Built-in IR LEDs Both ME6 Series models have built-in IR LEDs that can illuminate objects in the dark at over 130-feet (40 meters) away. Both are also protected by weather-proof (IP66), vandal-resistant (IK10) enclosures to ensure optimum performance in all climates. “We’re very pleased to add the ME6 Series IP Cameras to our portfolio,” said Dinning. “The powerful combination of accurate security analytics with superior image quality will make the ME6 Series a popular choice in both new and existing installations.”

March Networks Announces Integration Between Its Searchlight And Zebra Savanna Cloud Platform
March Networks Announces Integration Between Its Searchlight And Zebra Savanna Cloud Platform

March Networks, a global renowned video security and video-based business intelligence solutions company, is pleased to announce the expansion of its Retail Solution to include fraudulent return investigations through the Zebra Savanna data intelligence platform. March Networks’ new integration – between its Searchlight for Retail software and Doddle, which designs, develops and integrates consumer fulfilment technology – is powered by Zebra Savanna, a cloud-based platform that enables the real-time collection of data from Zebra Technologies’ sensors and devices. March Networks Searchlight March Networks Searchlight logs events from Zebra Savanna and other systems within the retail environment Through this unique collaboration, March Networks Searchlight logs events from Zebra Savanna and other systems within the retail environment, like Doddle, that are powered by the Zebra platform. Searchlight can then match those events with corresponding video clips for greater enterprise-wide visibility. For example, with the Searchlight-Doddle integration, retailers using Doddle can keep a record of all of their product returns in Searchlight. When a customer arrives in-store to return a product facilitated by Doddle’s returns technology, Searchlight records that event, allowing retailers to quickly and easily pull up the surveillance video associated with the return. This allows retailers to visually verify the details of all product returns, including the individuals involved and the condition of the product at the time of the return. Zebra Savanna cloud-based platform In addition, the integration also tracks other retail events such as coupon use at the point-of-sale (POS).  Retailers offering coupons through fulfillment partners like Doddle that are powered by Zebra Savanna can track the full buying cycle in Searchlight. When a customer uses a coupon, it’s recorded in Zebra Savanna and visible in Searchlight, allowing retailers to track the success of promotions offered through third-party vendors. “As more consumers turn to online channels for their retail purchases and returns, these latest Searchlight capabilities bridge the gap between digital and in-store transactions, providing retailers with complete visibility into the buying cycle,” said Jeff Corrall, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Integrations for March Networks. “According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), 11% of retail purchases are returned and an average 8% of returns are fraudulent. With Searchlight, retailers can proactively detect and target this fraud, and recoup associated losses.” Power of integrated data and video “By working with leading retail manufacturers like Zebra Technologies and fulfillment technology companies like Doddle, March Networks is proving the true power of integrated data and video, and its ability to positively impact the retail bottom line.” Returns can have an impact on retailers’ margins, especially over peak periods" “Returns can have an impact on retailers’ margins, especially over peak periods,” said Gary O’Connor, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Doddle. “Working with partners like March Networks means the Doddle platform can provide deeper insight. Retailers have the ability to re-convert customers through personalized digital journeys, while also having access to more capability to prevent fraud.” Integration with RFID data from Zebra sensors March Networks’ Retail Solution is used by more than 300 retailers worldwide to facilitate improved efficiency and compliance, reduction in losses and risk management, thereby enhancing customer service and compete more successfully in the market. Searchlight is the centerpiece of the solution that helps retailers to improve performance and profitability through the integration of clear surveillance video, relevant business data, including POS transactions, and highly accurate analytics. March Networks’ Searchlight also integrates with radio frequency identification (RFID) data from Zebra sensors and devices for enhanced product tracking, loss prevention and inventory management. March Networks will showcase the Searchlight for Retail-Doddle integration powered by Zebra Savanna in Zebra Technologies’ booth #3301 at NRF 2020: Retail’s Big Show Expo, January 12-14 in New York, NY.  

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