IP Video systems Cybersecurity challenges


What's the Technology Report about?

This SourceSecurity.com Technology Report will look at how cybersecurity risks of video surveillance systems can be minimized, and highlight the role manufacturers, installers/integrators and end users should play to make IP video systems as safe from cyber-attack as humanly possible. Manufacturers, in particular, are stepping up to drive the industry’s efforts, and Hikvision USA is a leader in educating the market to address cybersecurity threats.

What's inside?

  • Waking Up to Cybersecurity Risks
  • Demonstrating Leadership on Cybersecurity
  • Best Practices for Cybersecurity
  • The Role of Manufacturers
  • Role of Installers/Integrators and End Users
  • A Cyber-Attack Could Happen to You

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How SecuriThings Boosts Cybersecurity Across Multiple IoT Devices
How SecuriThings Boosts Cybersecurity Across Multiple IoT Devices

As Internet of Things (IoT) devices go, networked video cameras are particularly significant. Connected to the internet and using on-board processing, cameras are subject to infection by malware and can be targeted by Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. Hacking of cameras also threatens privacy by allowing unauthorized access to video footage. The performance of hacked cameras can be degraded, and they may become unable to communicate properly when needed. Ensuring cybersecurity is a challenge, and the fragmented structure of the video surveillance market contributes to that challenge. A variety of companies are involved in manufacturing, integrating, installing and operating video systems, and cybersecurity threats can enter the picture at any stage. “It’s not always clear who is responsible,” says Yotam Gutman, vice president of marketing for SecuriThings, a cybersecurity company. “However, the only entities who can ensure cybersecurity are the security integrator and the service provider. They will bear the financial pain and are willing to pay for cybersecurity. An extra $1 or $2 per camera per month is not expensive.” SecuriThings’ “lightweight software agent” runs in the background of video cameras, sending information to an analytics system in the cloud IoT Device Security Management At the recent IFSEC trade show in London, SecuriThings unveiled its IoT Device Security Management (IDSM) approach to enable integrators to ensure cybersecurity. Founded in 2015, the company has around 20 employees in Tel Aviv, Israel, and operates a sales office in New York City. SecuriThings’ “lightweight software agent” runs in the background of video cameras, collecting metadata on camera processes and connections and sending information back to an analytics system in the cloud. Drag-and-drop deployment enables a camera to begin generating data within seconds and requiring only two mouse clicks. The cloud system analyzes data, pinpoints abnormalities, identifies new users, detects multiple entry attempts and tracks other camera processes to identify any cyberattacks. It monitors all devices, gateways, users and APIs to detect threats in real-time and mitigate the threats based on a pre-determined security policy. Machine learning tools also analyze more subtle activities that can indicate insider abuse. For example, a user support center can identify if cameras are being accessed improperly by employees, thus preventing insider abuse. Certified Vendor Agnostic Software SecuriThings is working with camera manufacturers and video management system (VMS) manufacturers to certify operation of its software agents with various camera models and systems. Working through integrators, such as Johnson Controls, is the fastest route to market, SecuriThings has determined. The system can be added after the fact to existing installations for immediate monitoring and remediation, or it can easily be incorporated into new systems as they are launched. “We have a strong sales team in the United States focusing on bringing the technology to more local and national integrators,” says Gutman. Certification ensures SecuriThings’ software agent can be installed in most modern camera models without negatively impacting operation; the software is vendor agnostic. Another eventual route to market is to work with camera manufacturers to install the SecuriThings software agent in cameras at the factory. In this scenario, the system can easily be “clicked on” when cameras are installed. The SecuriThings cloud system generates a dashboard that tracks system activities to identify any cybersecurity threats IoT Security Operations Center SecuriThings operation is transparent to the VMS, and the company works with VMS manufacturers to ensure the code operates seamlessly with their systems. Cloud analytics generate a dashboard that tracks system activities, and/or a managed service monitors the system and notifies customers if there is a problem. “We monitor it from our IoT Security Operations Center, a fully managed service that ensures the real-time detection and mitigation of IoT cyber-threats,” says Gutman. “We found that end-customers don’t have the manpower to monitor the system, so our experts can guide them.”Access control and cloud-based access control will be the next systems under cyberattack, and they are almost as vulnerable" A benefit for camera manufacturers is the ability of a system like SecuriThings to “level the playing field” on issues of cybersecurity, says Gutman. The approach provides a higher level of cybersecurity confidence for integrators and users, including those using cameras that have previously had cybersecurity problems such as “back door” access. SecuriThings has certified its software for use with Hikvision cameras and is in the process of certifying with Dahua, says Gutman. “Western manufacturers say their products are more secure, but we can help all camera manufacturers prove that they are just as secure,” says Gutman. “Integrators and users can log into a device and see all the activity.” Securing Connected Devices From Cyber Threats Beyond video, SecuriThings’ products target the full range of connected devices in the Internet of Things (IoT). The SecuriThings security solution enables real-time visibility and control of IoT devices deployed in massive numbers in smart cities, physical security, building automation, home entertainment and more. Video surveillance is an early focus because of market need, an opportunity to gain traction, and the critical nature of security applications. But the challenges are much broader than video surveillance. “We are seeing similar risks to other devices,” says Gutman. “Access control and cloud-based access control will be the next systems under cyberattack, and they are almost as vulnerable. If you can disable the access control system, you can cause a lot of problems.” Other connected devices that could be at risk include building automation and heating and cooling (HVAC) systems.

Development Of Integrated Thermal Imaging Technology Into Evolving Market Verticals
Development Of Integrated Thermal Imaging Technology Into Evolving Market Verticals

Global and domestic threats have highlighted the need for tighter security across all verticals. One of the technologies that has redefined situational awareness and intrusion detection is thermal imaging. Once a technology exclusively manufactured for the military operations, thermal cameras today are deployed across hundreds of security applications and continue to see strong demand in existing and emerging commercial markets. With thermal technology, security personnel can see in complete darkness as well as in light fog, smoke and rain Technology Overview And Early Adoption What distinguishes thermal cameras from optical sensors is their ability to produce images based on infrared energy, or heat, rather than light. By measuring the heat signatures of all objects and capturing minute differences between them, thermal cameras produce clear, sharp video despite unfavorable environmental conditions. With thermal technology, security personnel can see in complete darkness as well as in light fog, smoke and rain. Originally a military developed, commercially qualified technology, the first thermal cameras for military and aircraft use appeared in the 1950s. By the 1960s, the technology had been declassified and the first thermal camera for commercial use was introduced. However, it wasn’t until the late 1990s - when FLIR Systems introduced a camera with an uncooled thermal detector - when the technology began to see substantial adoption beyond government defense deployments. Installations At Critical Infrastructure Sites In the 2000s, industrial companies were some of the first adopters of thermal, using the technology for predictive maintenance to monitor overheating and machine malfunctions. In the years following the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001, there was an increase in thermal camera installations across critical infrastructure sites. Stricter security requirements drove the deployment of thermal cameras for perimeter protection, especially in the nuclear power sector. Thermal cameras produce clear video in daylight, low light or no light scenarios and their sharp images result in higher performing analytics In 2010, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Committee released its 73.55 policy, which states nuclear facilities must “provide continuous surveillance, observation and monitoring” as a means to enhance threat detection and deterrence efforts onsite. Because thermal cameras produce clear video in daylight, low light or no light scenarios and because their sharp images result in higher performing analytics, thermal cameras quickly became the preferred option for nuclear facilities. Likewise, following the 2013 sniper attack on PG&E Corporation’s Metcalf transmission substation, the Federal Energy Regulation Commission introduced the Critical Infrastructure Protection Standard 014 (CIP-014). The policy requires utilities to identify threats to mission critical assets and implement a security system to mitigate those risks. This statute also led to more thermal installations in the utility sector as thermal cameras’ long-range capabilities are ideal for detection of approaching targets beyond the fence line. The demand from both industrial and critical infrastructure entities, as well as other factors, helped drive volume production and price reduction for thermal, making the technology more accessible to the commercial security marketplace. Commercial Applications In recent years, the increasing affordability of thermal cameras along with the introduction of new thermal offerings has opened the door to new commercial applications for the technology. In the past, thermal cameras were designed for applications with enormous perimeters, where the camera needed to detect a human from 700 meters away. Locations like car dealerships, marinas and construction supply facilities can be protected by precise target detection, thermal analytic cameras providing an early warning to security personnel Today, there are thermal cameras specifically designed for short- to mid-range applications. Developed for small to medium enterprises, these thermal cameras ensure property size and security funds are no longer barriers to adoption. Lumber yards, recreation fields and sports arenas are some of the commercial applications now able to implement thermal cameras for 24-hour monitoring and intrusion detection. Affordable thermal cameras with onboard analytics have become attractive options for commercial businesses Innovation And Advancements Innovation and advancements in the core technology have also spurred growth in thermal camera deployment, providing faster image processing, higher resolution, greater video analytic capabilities and better camera performance. In particular, affordable thermal cameras with onboard analytics have become attractive options for commercial businesses that need outdoor, wide area protection. Car dealerships, marinas and construction supply locations all store valuable merchandise and materials outside. Without protection, these assets are vulnerable to vandalism and theft. However, by providing precise target detection, thermal analytic cameras provide an early warning to security personnel so that they can intervene before a crime is committed. By helping to deter just one incident, the thermal solution delivers a clear ROI. New Market Opportunities Not only are there more thermal cameras in use today than ever before, but there are also more thermal sensors being integrated with other multi-sensor systems, driving the adoption of thermal in new markets. For large perimeter surveillance applications, thermal is repeatedly being integrated with radar and drones to expand situational awareness beyond the point of fixed cameras. Users get immediate, accurate alerts of approaching targets and evidentiary class video for target assessment In the commercial market, thermal imagers are combined with optical sensors, analytics and LED illuminators into one solution that integrates with central monitoring station platforms. By bringing these technologies together, users get immediate, accurate alerts of approaching targets and evidentiary class video for target assessment. The result is a lower number of false positives, reducing the total cost of ownership for the solution. These multi-sensor solutions also feature two-way audio capabilities, which enable remote security officers to act as “virtual guards” and speak to intruders in real-time to dissuade them from illegal activity. The introduction of solutions that integrate all these state-of-the-art technologies under one unit reduces the amount of capital and infrastructure needed for deployment. Consequently, more small businesses and alarm monitoring companies can implement advanced perimeter security technologies like thermal sensors, some for the very first time. Thermal cameras have gone from military defense devices to widespread commercial security cameras Multi-Sensor Thermal Solutions Multi-sensor solutions featuring thermal are quickly gaining traction and opening the door to new business opportunities for the security channel. One of the primary reasons for the strong market interest in these systems is they enable integrators to increase their recurring monthly revenue (RMR). With intense price competition and eroding margins on CCTV equipment, integrators have to rely on RMR to grow their businesses. Offering remote video monitoring services and virtual guarding technologies is one of the best ways to do so.  Additionally, there is a clear demand for it. Central stations are continually looking for new technologies to offer their customers and businesses are interested in economical alternatives to physical guards. In conclusion, thermal cameras have gone from military defense devices to widespread commercial security cameras that are a substantial segment of the outdoor security protection market. From nuclear power plants to construction locations, thermal technology is being implemented to secure sites around the globe.