Government & public services security applications
With a history dating back to the 1850s, the Sioux City Public Museum has evolved from its original focus on natural science to a broader emphasis on preserving the area’s heritage, offering a variety of educational programmes, events, and historical exhibitions valued at more than $2 million. Having outgrown its former location in a prominent Victorian-era mansion, the museum moved to a new downtown site in April 2011—a modern, open-concept building that has become known as one of t...
Since 1967, Southside Medical Center has been providing affordable healthcare and related services to the insured, underinsured, and uninsured in downtown Atlanta. As one of the oldest and largest community health centres in Georgia, Southside Medical Center has continued to advance healthcare in the area by becoming the first Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) of Excellence to offer additional services beyond primary care. “We are in a new era and are moving forward with plans to ha...
Manchester-Boston Regional Airport opened to serve the state of New Hampshire and the surrounding New England community in 1927, a little over two decades after the Wright brother’s first powered flight. Located three miles south of central Manchester, the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport is the fourth largest passenger and third largest cargo airport in New England. The airport is also the busiest in the state, qualifying under the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) as a “small...
Public safety and the protection of property initiatives led the city of Mankato, Minnesota to deploy a city-wide IP-based video surveillance system. Founded in 1852, the city is the seat of Blue Earth County. It encompasses 18.26 square miles of land and water, and supports a population of about 41,000 (2015 US census estimate). Home to a variety of natural landmarks and higher educational institutes, Mankato provides a dynamic lifestyle for its citizens all year round. Surveillance For Key Co...
Roumieh is the largest prison in Lebanon, holding thousands of prisoners within its walls. The size of the prison population of Roumieh and the challenges authorities face around internal crime, corruption, contraband, and inmate unrest have led to the continued notoriety of the facility. The prison consists of five buildings and hosts a variety of convicts and detainees. Its population ranges from individuals held on remand to terrorists and high-risk prisoners who pose great challenges to sec...
Arecont Vision megapixel cameras enable city, county, state, and federal or national governments worldwide to deploy new, cost-effective applications for enhanced situational awareness and forensic viewing.With security concerns on the rise, video surveillance is often the first and sometime the only witness to incidents and the actions that led to them.Arecont Vision solutions increase surveillance coverage and quality, while reducing the number of cameras required and for less cost. Surveilla...
Security trade fairs can be daunting for attendees. At big shows like ISC West and Global Security Exchange (GSX), there can be hundreds of physical security manufacturers and dealers vying for your attention. Booths are sometimes spread out across multiple halls, often accompanied by a confusing floor plan. As the scope of physical security expands from video surveillance and access control to include smart building integrations, cyber security and the Internet of Things (IoT), there is an increasing amount of information to take in from education sessions and panels. Here, SecurityInformed.com presents eight hints and tips for visitors to make the most out of trade shows: 1. Outline your objectives. As the famous saying goes, “Failing to plan is planning to fail!” Before you plan anything else, ensure you know what you need to achieve at the show. By clearly noting your objectives, you will be able to divide your time at the show appropriately, and carefully choose who you speak to. If there is a particular project your organization is working on, search out the products and solutions that address your security challenges. If you are a security professional aiming to keep up with the latest trends and technologies, then networking sessions and seminars may be more appropriate. 2. Bring a standard list of questions Prepare a list of specific questions that will tell you if a product, solution or potential partner will help you meet your objectives. By asking the same questions to each exhibitor you speak to, you will be able to take notes and compare their offerings side by side at the end of the day. This also means you won’t get bogged down in details that are irrelevant to your goals. Most trade fair websites provide the option to filter exhibitors by their product category 3. Do your homework Once you know your objectives, you can start to research who is exhibiting and decide who you want to talk to. Lists of exhibitors can be daunting, and don’t always show you which manufacturers meet your needs. Luckily, most trade fair websites provide the option to filter exhibitors by their product category. Many exhibitions also offer a downloadable floor plan, grouping exhibitors by product category or by relevant vertical market. It may be easier to download the floor plan to your phone/tablet or even print it out, if you don’t want to carry around a weighty map or show-guide. 4. Make a schedule Once you have shortlisted the companies you need to see, you can make a schedule that reflects your priorities. Even if you are not booking fixed meetings, a schedule will allow you to effectively manage your time, ensuring you make time for the exhibitors you can’t afford to miss. If the trade show spans several days, aim to have your most important conversations early on day one. By the time the last afternoon of the show comes around, many companies are already packing up their booth and preparing to head home. When scheduling fixed meetings, keep the floor plan at hand to avoid booking consecutive meetings at opposite ends of the venue. This will ensure you can walk calmly between stands and don’t arrive at an important meeting feeling flustered! Look for panels and seminars which address the specific needs of your project, or which will contribute to your professional growth 5. Make time for learning If you’re on a mission to expand your knowledge in a given area, check the event guide beforehand to note any education sessions you may want to attend. Look for panels and seminars which address the specific needs of your project, or which will contribute to your professional growth. This is one of the best opportunities you will have to learn from industry leaders in the field. Be sure to plan your attendance in advance so you can schedule the rest of your day accordingly. 6. Keep a record Armed with your objectives and list of questions, you will want to make a note of exhibitors’ responses to help you come to an informed decision. If you’re relying on an electronic device such as a smartphone or tablet to take notes, you may like to consider bringing a back-up notepad and pen, so you can continue to take notes if your battery fails. Your record does not have to be confined to written bullet points. Photos and videos are great tools remind you what you saw at the show, and they may pick up details that you weren’t able to describe in your notes. Most mobile devices can take photos – and images don’t need to be high quality if they’re just to refresh your memory. 7. Network – but don’t let small talk rule the day It may be tempting to take advantage of this time away from the office to talk about anything but business! While small talk can be helpful for building strong professional relationships, remember to keep your list of questions at hand so you can always bring conversations back to your key objectives. Keeping these goals in mind will also help you avoid being swayed by any unhelpful marketing-speak. It may seem obvious, but don’t forget to exchange business cards with everyone you speak to, or even take the opportunity to connect via LinkedIn. Even if something doesn’t seem relevant now, these contacts may be useful in future. Have a dedicated section in your bag or briefcase for business cards to avoid rummaging around. With your most important conversations planned carefully, there should be time left to explore the show more freely 8. Schedule time for wandering With your most important conversations planned carefully, there should be time left to explore the show more freely. Allowing dedicated time to wander will give you a welcome break from more pressing conversations, and may throw up a welcome surprise in the form of a smaller company or new technology you weren’t aware of. Security Trade Fair Checklist: Photo Identification: As well as your event pass, some events require photo identification for entry. Notebook and pen: By writing as you go, you will be able to compare notes at the end of the day. Mobile device: Photos and videos are great tools to remind you what you saw at the show, and may pick up details you missed in your notes. Paper schedule & floor plan: In case batteries or network service fail. Business cards: Have a dedicated pouch or pocket for these to avoid rummaging at the bottom of a bag. Comfortable shoes: If you’re spending a whole day at an event, and plan on visiting multiple booths, comfortable shoes are a must!
I have been thinking a lot about the U.S. government’s ban on video surveillance technologies by Hikvision and Dahua. In general, I question the wisdom and logic of the ban and am frankly puzzled as to how it came to be. Allow me to elaborate. Chinese Camera Manufacturers Reality check: The government ban is based on concerns about the potential misuse of cameras, not actual misuse. Before the government ban, you occasionally heard about some government entities deciding not to use cameras manufactured by Chinese companies, although the reasons were mostly “in an abundance of caution.” Even so, I find the targeting of two Chinese companies – three if you count Hytera Communications, a mobile radio manufacturer – in a huge government military spending bill to be a little puzzling. I can’t quite picture how these specific companies got on Congress’s radar. The government ban is based on concerns about the potential misuse of cameras, not actual misuse What level of lobbying or backroom dealing was involved in getting the ban introduced (by a Missouri congresswoman) into the House version of the bill? And after the ban was left out of the Senate version, was there a new wave of discussions to ensure it was included in the joint House-Senate version (with some minor changes, and who negotiated those?). It all seems a little random. Concerns For The U.S. Furthermore, the U.S. ban solves neither of the two main concerns that are generally used as its justification: Concern: Cybersecurity. The U.S. ban “solves” the issue of cybersecurity only if both of the following statements are true. No security system that uses a Hikvision or Dahua camera or other component is cybersecure. Any system that does not use a Hikvision or Dahua camera or other component is cybersecure. What level of lobbying or backroom dealing was involved in getting the ban introduced into the House version of the bill? The ban ignores the breadth and complexity of cybersecurity and instead offers up two companies as scapegoats. Our industry has sought to address cybersecurity, and the one principle that has guided that effort is that cybersecurity is an issue that must be addressed by manufacturers, consultants, integrators and end users – in effect, everyone in the industry. Cybersecurity does not begin and end with the manufacturer and banning any manufacturers from the market does not ensure better cybersecurity. Concern: “Untrustworthy” Chinese companies. Hikvision and Dahua are only two Chinese companies. Any response to concerns about whether Chinese companies are trustworthy would need to cover many more companies that manufacture their products in China. Australian TV recently claimed that “All Chinese companies pose a risk. Because of Chinese laws, there is a requirement for companies to be engaged in espionage on behalf of the state.” Even if one embraces that extreme view, the logic fails when only two companies are targeted. One source told me that 60 to 65 percent of the global supply of commercial video cameras are manufactured in China, so it’s a much bigger issue than two companies.The Chinese government has much more effective ways of conducting espionage than exploiting security cameras And is U.S. security at risk unless or until it is cut off from more than half of the world’s supply of video cameras? Even Western camera companies manufacture some of their cameras and/or components in China. Why name only two (or three) companies, only one of which has ties to the Chinese government? If the goal of the U.S. ban was to address the possibility of cybersecurity and/or espionage by the Chinese government, shouldn’t there be other companies and product categories included? Clearly, video surveillance is not the only category that has the potential for abuse. The Chinese government has much more effective ways of conducting espionage than exploiting security cameras. Global Response To U.S. Ban And now that the U.S. ban has been passed, how is the ban being misused to justify a new level of alarm about Chinese companies? Australian television effortlessly made the leap from “software backdoors” to a concerted and organized effort by the Chinese government to use cameras to be the “number one country for espionage.” And it’s not just about government facilities: “Even on the street, [cameras] have the potential to inadvertently contribute toward Chinese espionage activity by providing real-time information about the situation on the ground,” says the Australian TV report. If all Chinese companies pose a risk, why is the U.S. government targeting specific companies rather than all Chinese companies? If all Chinese companies pose a risk, why is the U.S. government targeting specific companies rather than all Chinese companies, or at least those with electronics or computer products that could be used for espionage? What about the espionage potential of the 70% of mobile phones that are made in China? What about other consumer electronics such as PCs or smart TVs? How many government facilities that are eliminating Dahua and Hikvision cameras have employees who use iPhones or use other electronic equipment from China? Artificial Intelligence & IP-Over-Coax Also, consider the impact of the ban on business. Hikvision and Dahua have had many successes in the video surveillance market, including in the U.S. market. They have added value to many integrators and end user customers. They have been on the forefront of important trends such as artificial intelligence and IP-over-coax. And, yes, they have made technologies available at lower prices.Cybersecurity issues have plagued several companies in the industry, not just Hikvision and Dahua Cybersecurity issues have plagued several companies in the industry, not just these two, and both Hikvision and Dahua have worked to fix past problems, and to raise awareness of cybersecurity concerns in general. Is a U.S. ban on two companies an appropriate response to a series of geo-political concerns that are much bigger than those two companies (and bigger than our entire market)? Should two companies take the brunt of the anti-Chinese backlash? Video Surveillance Cameras Is the video surveillance market as a whole better or worse for the presence of Hikvision and Dahua? Is it up to the U.S. government to make that call? In some ways, thoughts of Chinese espionage are a sign of these uncertain political times. Fear of video surveillance is perfectly congruent with long-standing anxieties about “Big Brother;” suspicion about China taking over our video cameras just rings true at a time when Russia is (supposedly) controlling our elections. But should two companies be targeted while broader concerns are shrugged off?
Governments and corporations face crisis events every day. An active shooter terrorizes a campus. A cyber extortionist holds a city for ransom. A hurricane washes away a key manufacturing facility. Not all critical events rise to the level of these catastrophic emergencies, but a late or inadequate response to even a minor incident can put people, operations and reputations at risk. Effective Response Plan In 2015, for example, the City of Boston experienced several record-breaking snowstorms that forced the city to close the subway system for three days. The extreme decision cost the state $265 million per day and was largely attributed to a lack of preparation and an inadequate response plan by the transportation department. The reputation of the head of the transportation department was so damaged by the decision she was forced to resign. Being able to better predict how the storms would impact the subway system’s aging infrastructure – and having a more effective response plan in place – could have saved the state hundreds of millions of dollars (not to mention the transit chief’s job). A comprehensive critical event management strategy begins before the impact of an event is felt and continues after the immediate crisis has ended. This full lifecycle strategy can be broken into four distinct phases – Assess, Locate, Act and Analyze. Assessing Threats For Prevention Security teams might have complained about not having enough intelligence data to make accurate predictionsIdentifying a threat before it reaches critical mass and understanding how it might impact vital assets is the most difficult challenge facing security professionals. In the past, security teams might have complained about not having enough intelligence data to make accurate predictions. Today, the exact opposite might be true – there is too much data! With crime and incident data coming from law enforcement agencies, photos and videos coming from people on the front line, topics trending on social media and logistical information originating from internal systems it can be almost impossible to locate a real signal among all the noise and chatter. Being able to easily visualize all this intelligence data within the context of an organization’s assets is vital to understand the relationship between threat data and the individuals or facilities in harm’s way. Social Media Monitoring Free tools like Google Maps or satellite imagery from organizations like AccuWeather, for example, can help understand how fast a storm is closing in on a manufacturing facility, or how close an active shooter is to a school. Their usefulness, however, is limited to a few event types and they provide only a very macro view of the crisis. Data from building access systems, wifi hotspots, corporate travel systems, among others, can be used to create a profile Critical event management (CEM) platforms, however, are designed specifically to manage critical events of all types and provide much greater visibility. Internal and external data sources (weather, local and national emergency management, social media monitoring software, security cameras, etc.) are integrated into these platforms and their data is visualised on a threat map. Security teams can quickly see if there are actual threats to the organizations or communities they are protecting and don’t lose time trying to make sense of intelligence reports. The more they can see on a ‘single pane of glass,’ the faster they can initiate the appropriate response. Locating A Threat Once a threat has been deemed a critical event, the next step is to find the people who might be impacted – employees/residents in danger, first responders and key stakeholders (e.g., senior executives or elected officials who need status updates). Often, this requires someone on the security team to access an HR contact database and initiate a call tree to contact each person individually, in a specific hierarchical order. This can be a time-consuming and opaque process. There is no information on the proximity of that person to the critical event, or if a person has skills such as CPR that could aid in the response. Ensuring ahead of time that certifications, skill sets, or on-call availability is included with contact information can save valuable time in the middle of a crisis response. Going even further, data from building access systems, wifi hotspots, corporate travel systems, among others, can be used to create a profile of where a person just was and where he or she might be going in a CEM platform. This information can be visualized on the threat map and help determine who is actually in danger and who can respond the fastest. The emergency response then becomes targeted and more effective. Security teams can quickly see if there are actual threats to the organizations or communities they are protecting Acting And Automating The third step is to act and automate processes. If there is a tornado closing in on a town, for example, residents should not have to wait for manual intervention before a siren is activated or a message sent out. Organizations can build and execute their standing operating procedures (SOPs) fully within a CEM platform. Sirens, alarms, digital signs and messages can all be automatically activated based on event type, severity and location. Using the tornado example, an integration with a weather forecasting service could trigger the command to issue a tornado warning for a specific community if it is in the path of the storm. Summon Security Guards Warning messages can be prepared in advance based on event type so there is no chance of issuing a misleading or unclear alert Warning messages can be prepared in advance based on event type so there is no chance of issuing a misleading or unclear alert. All communications with impacted individuals can be centralized within the platform and automated based on SOP protocols. This also includes inbound communications from first responders and impacted individuals. An employee confronted by an assailant in a parking garage could initiate an SOS alert from his or her mobile phone that would automatically summon security guards to the scene. Conference lines can also be instantly created to enable collaboration and speed response time. Additionally, escalation policies are automatically engaged if a protocol is broken. For example, during an IT outage, if the primary network engineer does not respond in two minutes, a designated backup is automatically summoned. Eliminating manual steps from SOPs reduces the chance for human error and increases the speed and effectiveness of critical event responses. Analysis Of A Threat Looking for ways to better prepare and respond to critical events will not only improve performance when similar events occur again It’s not uncommon for security and response teams to think that a critical event is over once the immediate crisis has ended. After all, they are often the ones pushing themselves to exhaustion and sometimes risking life and limb to protect their neighbours, colleagues, community reputations and company brands. They need and deserve a rest. In the aftermath of a critical event, however, it’s important to review the effectiveness of the response and look for ways to drive improvements. Which tasks took too long? What resources were missing? How many times did people respond quickly? With a CEM platform, team performance, operational response, benchmarking data and notification analysis are all captured within the system and are available in a configurable dashboard or in after-action reports for analysis. Continuously looking for ways to better prepare and respond to critical events will not only improve performance when similar events occur again, but it will also improve response effectiveness when unforeseen events strike. Coordinate Emergency Response Virtually every organization has some form of response plan to triage a critical event and restore community order or business operations. While many of these plans are highly effective in providing a structure to command and coordinate emergency response, they are reactive in nature and don’t account for the full lifecycle of a critical event – Assess, Locate, Act and Analyze. Whether it’s a large-scale regional emergency or a daily operational issue such as an IT outage, a comprehensive critical event management strategy will minimize the impact by improving visibility, collaboration and response.
Using a smart phone as an access control credential is an idea whose time has come – or has it? The flexible uses of smart phones are transforming our lives in multiple ways, and the devices are replacing everything from our alarm clocks to our wallets to our televisions. However, the transformation from using a card to using a mobile credential for access control is far from a no-brainer for many organizations, which obstacles to a fast or easy transition. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: When will mobile credentials dominate access control, and what are the obstacles to greater adoption?
In 1973, a brilliant economist named E.F. Schumacher wrote a seminal book titled ‘Small Is Beautiful:’ taking an opposing stance to the emergence of globalization and “bigger is better” industrialism. He described the advantages of smaller companies and smaller scales of production, highlighting the benefits of building our economies around the needs of communities, not corporations. In almost every industry or market that exists in the world today, you're likely to find a difference in size between companies. Whether it’s a global retail chain versus a small family-owned store, a corporate restaurant chain versus a mom-and-pop diner or a small bed and breakfast versus a large hotel chain — each side of the coin presents unique characteristics and advantages in a number of areas. Disparity In Physical Security Industry Customers are drawn to products and services from large enterprises as the big names typically imply stability This disparity very clearly exists in the physical security industry, and differences in the sizes of product manufacturers and service providers could have important implications for the quality and type of the products and services offered. All too often, customers are drawn to products and services from large enterprises, as the big names typically imply stability, extensive product offerings and global reach. And that's not to say that these considerations are unwarranted; one could argue that larger companies have more resources for product development and likely possess the combined expertise and experience to provide a wide range of products and services. But the value that a company’s products and services can bring isn’t necessarily directly related to or dependent on its size. In an age where the common wisdom is to scale up to be more efficient and profitable, it’s interesting to pause and think about some of the possible advantages of small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Typically, “small” companies are defined as those with less than 100 employees and “medium” with less than 500. Providing Social Mobility Schumacher argued that smaller companies are important engines of economic growth. Indeed, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), a group of 36 member countries that promotes policies for economic and social well-being, SMBs account for 60 to 70 percent of jobs in most OECD countries. Importantly, SMBs provide resilience in that there are often large economic and social impacts when big companies fail. Smaller companies are better for regional economies in general, as earnings stay more local compared to big businesses, which in turn generates additional economic activity. SMBs are also better at providing social mobility for disadvantaged groups by giving them opportunities and enabling them to realize their potential. Smaller companies are often more innovative, bringing to the market novel technologies and solutions such as Cloud, analytics, AI, and IoT New Companies Introduce New Technologies There's no denying the role of start-ups when it comes to innovation. In the security industry, many new technologies (e.g. Cloud, analytics, AI, IoT) are first brought to the market by newer companies. In general, smaller companies’ products and services often have to be as good or better than others to be competitive in the marketplace. They are therefore often more innovative, bringing to the market novel technologies and solutions. And these companies are also more willing to try out other new B2B solutions, while larger companies tend to be more risk-averse. Customer Service Aside from the quality of products and services, arguably one of the most important components of a security company’s success is its ability to interact with and provide customers the support that they deserve. Smaller companies are able to excel and stand out to their customers in a number of ways: Customer service. Customers’ perceptions of a product’s quality are influenced by the quality of support, and smaller manufacturers often possess a strong, motivated customer service team that can be relatively more responsive to customers of all sizes, not just the large ones. A superior level of support generally translates into high marks on customer satisfaction, since customers’ issues with products can be resolved promptly. Flexibility. SMBs have a greater capacity to detect and satisfy small market niches. While large companies generally create products and services for large markets, smaller companies deal more directly with their customers, enabling them to meet their needs and offer customized products and services. And this translates to adaptability, as SMBs become responsive to new market trends. By having a pulse on the market, smaller companies have much more flexibility in their supply chain and can adjust much faster in response to changing demand. Decision-making. Smaller companies are much more agile in decision-making, while larger enterprises often suffer from complex, tedious and lengthy decision-making processes. Communication is easier throughout SMBs, as smaller teams enable new ideas to flow and can solve problems faster. Job Satisfaction Employees working for SMBs connect more directly with the company's goals and objectives, which in turn increases motivation and job satisfaction Employees working for SMBs connect more directly with the company's goals and objectives, which in turn increases motivation and job satisfaction. SMBs are also generally more connected to local communities and participation in community activities leads to a greater sense of purpose. Additionally, SMBs have a much smaller impact on the environment, which is increasingly becoming an important consideration for today’s employees and customers. Though Schumacher's book takes a much deeper dive into the large global effects of scale on people and profitability, the general impact of a company’s size on its products and services is clear. It’s important for all players in the security industry to remember that the commitment and dedication to product quality can be found in businesses of all sizes. Ensuring Safety Of People, Property And Assets Large manufacturers may catch your eye, but small business shouldn’t be forgotten, as they can offer end users a robust set of attributes and benefits. While all security companies are aiming to achieve a common goal of providing safety for people, property and assets, smaller businesses can provide extensive value when it comes to driving the economy, innovating in the industry, providing quality employment and offering superior customer service.
Repercussions are rippling through the physical security industry since President Trump signed into law the ban on government uses of surveillance equipment by Chinese manufacturers Hikvision and Dahua. In addition to the direct and indirect consequences of the new law, there have also been other developments likely to impact the future of Chinese companies in the video surveillance market. The ban has raised awareness of Chinese companies’ role in video surveillance, and other developments are related to tariffs and possible sanctions, all playing out amid the backdrop of an escalating trade war. One Chinese manufacturer previously dismissed security concerns about its role in video surveillance as “Cold War rhetoric.” There has been an almost nostalgic tone recently to the escalating concerns about video cameras being used for spying. Hikvision and Dahua have both stated emphatically that they have not conducted any espionage-related activities. Even so, the U.S. government ban has emboldened the concerns. However, to be clear: No one has alleged that technologies from either of the companies have been used for espionage. Rather, the concerns are about the potential for misuse, not actual misuse. Also aggravating the situation are Chinese companies’ previous, actual problems with cybersecurity, which the companies say they have addressed. Here are some recent developments related to the U.S. government ban and Chinese manufacturers in general: Tariffs And Trade Concerns Additional rounds of U.S. tariffs have targeted an expanding array of Chinese goods, including data storage and processing components such as printed circuit boards, as well as video camera lenses. The escalating trade war has kept generalized concerns about China and its trade practices in the public eye and fomented a level of uncertainty in many markets, including physical security. Additional rounds of U.S. tariffs have targeted an expanding array of Chinese goods Involvement Of Surveillance In Chinese Human Rights Violations Concerns have surfaced in a Congressional hearing recently about the Chinese government’s surveillance activities targeting the Uyghurs and other Muslim ethnic minorities in the Zinjiang Urghur Autonomous Region (XUAR). Specific attention is being directed at the region’s surveillance system including “thousands of surveillance cameras, including in mosques,” and Hikvision and Dahua were mentioned in the Congressional hearing as profiting from security spending in the area. Increased Global Media Attention The ban has not been widely publicized in the U.S. mainstream media, but the topic has attracted global attention. For example, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation broadcast a 10-minute expose on the use of Chinese-made cameras in Australian government facilities, including “sensitive military facilities.” The report, which mentioned the U.S. ban, noted that “Both [Hikvision and Dahua] have had security flaws be exposed leading to fears that some of the flaws were placed there to help the Chinese government spy.” The report continues: “China is trying to set itself up as the number-one country for cyber-espionage, and this is part of that platform.” How broadly should one interpret the inclusion of "critical infrastructure" mentioned in the bill? Broader Interpretation Of The Bill Beyond The Federal Government The language in the bill leaves a level of ambiguity in terms of the scope of its application, and the security marketplace as a whole has been struggling to understand its full impact. Does the ban only restrict an integrator’s use of Chinese technology on a specific government job, or does it eliminate an integrator who installs the technology (even in non-government projects) from consideration for government jobs? How broadly should one interpret the inclusion of “critical infrastructure” mentioned in the bill, for example, non-governmental facilities? Will other governments and private entities assume they should ban Hikvision and Dahua in order to be compliant? For example, Suffolk, VA., has announced it will not to use Dahua or Hikvision cameras because the federal ban applies to “U.S. government-funded contracts and for critical infrastructure and national security usage.” The result of these developments is a kind of snowball effect, simultaneously drawing attention to the issues and adding new elements to an overall narrative. Taken together, these developments suggest the U.S. ban has set off a level of concern about Chinese companies that will have an industry-transforming impact in the months to come.
Government And Public Service From national governments and the largest metropolitan areas in the world to the most rural communities, government agencies, and departments, all face the challenge of protecting citizens, staff, property, infrastructure, and resources within limited resources. Arecont Vision IP megapixel cameras have been proven around the world to meet the needs of city surveillance, traffic enforcement, police and law enforcement, corrections, military, and national/federal/state/provincial/county government agencies. Applications Situational awareness Employee, citizen, event, area, and facility surveillance and protection Traffic monitoring and enforcement Surveillance of buildings, structures, walkways, sidewalks, streets, tunnels, infrastructure, bridges, railways, storage areas, and highways People counting and identification License plate recognition Facility access control and monitoring Integration with identify management/access control systems Video documentation and forensic recording Benefits Megapixel video provides outstanding video quality Multi-sensor megapixel cameras reduce the need for multiple individual cameras while providing superior coverage World class cameras integrated with over 100 VMS/NVR platforms for integration and interoperability beyond built-in ONVIF and PSIA standards support Complete situational awareness for security operations Firmware can be securely updated remotely to support new features and capabilities both from Arecont Vision development and from VMS/NVR vendors Easy integration with and migration from existing systems to HD video Future proof with easy system expansion Fewer cables and cameras to install, fewer VMS/NVR licenses, and less to manage and maintain for lower installation and operational costs
XProtect® Smart Client In A 'Smart City' When the City of Beverly Hills began searching for a way to enhance and expand its video surveillance program, officials turned to Milestone Systems' XProtect IP video platform. Former mayor and technology CEO Jimmy Delshad wanted an IP video surveillance system that would reflect Beverly Hills' progressive 'Smart City' initiative. He saw IP video as a means to help the city achieve its goal of being the smartest, safest and most sustainable city in the country. Beverly Hills has a centralized IT Department headed up by Chief Information Officer David Schirmer and Assistant CIO Mark Hobson. The city has integrated Milestone XProtect with several municipal functions, including Fire, Police, Parks and Recreation and Public Works departments. "The software has been great because we can manage it centrally and view it remotely," says Hobson. "This has helped all city operations become more efficient." The Open Platform For Future Scalability According to Schirmer, the city's challenge was to incorporate a system that was reliable,flexible and scalable. "We wanted the best of the class – an all IP-based surveillance system that would support the best cameras on the market with the best image quality," he explained. Milestone XProtect® Enterprise is currently supporting high-end megapixel cameras from IQinVision, Axis, Toshiba and a series of legacy analog cameras, as well. Beverly Hills has a population of about 35,000 residents, but on any given day "we host around 300,000 visitors and workers," notes Hobson. This comes as no surprise for the most famous zip code in the country, where reliable surveillance is a must at such famous landmarks as Santa Monica Boulevard and Rodeo Drive. It is also no secret that Beverly Hills is home to several high-profile residents, from celebrities and foreign diplomats to very successful business executives. Along with such notable residents come nationally anticipated events, such as the Golden Globes™ award ceremony, which draws even more visitors to Beverly Hills. As of June the city had 45 cameras installed, aiming for 100 before the end of 2008. The California Retention Law requires that archived footage be stored for a minimum of 12 months. To aid in archiving and storage – the third phase of the Milestone project – the city is working with Milestone integration partner, Mainline Information Systems. Hardware Used: A Camera Mix For Best-In-Class "There have been zero problems with the Milestone XProtect software, so it is easy to earn ongoing support from city council and to secure grants from the Department of Justice (Homeland Security), which aids in the future growth of the system" IBM video record and archive components: X series servers using dual core Xeon processors Fiber Channel expandable storage using X and N series components Tivoli Tape System Management for long term retention requirements Cameras (to date): IQinVision 500, 700, and 800 series New IQinVision Sentinel Axis 233D PTZ and 216FD fixed dome Currently on order: Arecont 360 and 180 dome cameras Video-Enabling The City After working with Milestone, the city realised that it could use Milestone XProtect to monitor the progress of building projects and to ensure safety. "The city is in the process of constructing a vehicle storage building," explains Schirmer, "and we're using Milestone to monitor the progress and to make sure the construction crew is wearing hard hats." The Fire Department also saw the benefits of the system and requested a camera to be placed on top of one of the Beverly Hills towers, the better to see and manage a situation by remotely accessing the footage. What's Next? The City of Beverly Hills will soon embark on the next phase of the installation plan. Currently, officials are working on the back end, archiving features, but they plan to add up to 80 more cameras in the third phase alone. Hobson explains that he is hoping to see more than 250 cameras installed when the project is complete. The city is also planning to integrate the Milestone XProtect Enterprise software into the Beverly Hills school system and businesses throughout the community. The Department of Homeland Security has recognized the city's critical infrastructure as a part of the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) and officials there are interested in using Beverly Hills as a prototype for larger cities, according to Schirmer. The city's ideas of expanding coverage with additional cameras and integrating schools, hotels and businesses with the system are in line with the Milestone standard of leveraging existing systems to provide unsurpassed security every day and for special events, such as the Golden Globes. The City of Beverly Hills already has existing technology in its police squad cars, and is looking to incorporate the Milestone system, with a goal of having total security running over one network throughout the City. "Milestone was chosen for its integration, flexibility, pricing structure and ease of use" The Advantages Of IP Video Open Platform Beverly Hills wanted a system with adequate out-of-the-box features that offered the latest advances, such as analytics. "We wanted a reliable system that was flexible enough to integrate other features and have a low overhead in the future," explains Schirmer. "Milestone provided that, and since it integrated so seamlessly to our system, we did not have to hire a new person to implement it." The most important aspect, he adds, is that "there have been zero problems with the Milestone XProtect software, so it is easy to earn ongoing support from city council and to secure grants from the Department of Justice (Homeland Security), which aids in the future growth of the system." Milestone XProtect software users also know that in addition to this reliability, the Power-over-Ethernet that an IP solution brings drastically cuts down on labor and costly cabling. Strong Partners Win Together With Milestone as a partner, gaining clients comes about naturally. Mainline is a Milestone-certified integration partner that has been able to interact directly with the Beverly Hills technical staff. Timothy Conwell of Mainline Information Systems says Milestone XProtect was selected for the Beverly Hills project following a thorough review by the city and by the Mainline consulting team. The research included industry tradeshows and recommendations from camera product partners that Mainline works with directly. "Milestone was chosen for its integration, flexibility, pricing structure and ease of use," Conwell says. "We're working with very advanced technology integration strategies, which include enterprise-level archive storage management by IBM, high-speed fixed broadband wireless, and MAN deployment techniques." Schirmer of Beverly Hills says the partnership has been productive: "Tim Conwell and the Mainline team have been instrumental in understanding the storage and our need to be able to rapidly search for archived footage." Among the chief qualities of the Milestone XProtect system, as it is being used in Beverly Hills, Conwell cited these outstanding features: Flexibility Of Scaling: The system has grown from a "proof of concept" design with a single server and a few cameras, to what will eventually include hundreds of cameras placed over the entire six square-mile area of Beverly Hills. The ability to scale to a multi-server distributed design and bring additional feature functions online over time is extremely helpful. A good example is the implementation of the Matrix service for the Police and Public Works departments. The system also has the ability to mix and match camera technology for the location and environment each camera covers. Pricing Structure: Milestone's pricing is competitive and cost-effective. With the unlimited server and unlimited user access per site license business model, the overall software cost of the system integration is actually lower as the system grows. Ease Of Use: Officials in Beverly Hills have been very pleased with the feature-rich user interface and the ability to quickly learn the system. Mainline implemented a successful "train the trainer" approach with the help of its MIS division throughout the project process.
The Copenhagen suburb of Brøndby has 35,000 citizens and 3,500 employees who work in about 100 institutions. It is considered to be just a medium-sized governmental district in comparison to other municipalities in Denmark, but in 2002 they made a very big decision that will affect its growing population in a positive way: all the public institutions must have video surveillance installed within the next few years. It was quickly determined that the surveillance should be digital. With this new technology, they can easily and flexibly add more cameras when needed, as well as integrate with other security systems later on. Brøndby chose Milestone XProtect® software, sold and installed by AC Sikring A/S. Strategic Decision For Social Welfare The strategic objective behind this comprehensive project was defined by Brøndby's mayor and politicians a year ago: they plan to ensure the safety of all the district schools, childcare facilities, libraries against vandalism and other criminal incidents. "We will not have our population feel unsafe, nor will we allow their public buildings to be vulnerable to vandalism and other crimes. We are taking preventive action against criminals to ensure security in Brøndby. That is the motivation behind the intiatives in this project," states Jørgen Nielsen, who is responsible for the surveillance project in the municipality of Brøndby. A budget of 6 million Danish crowns has been set for this big project, to cover a four-year period for all of the installations. The first portion of the money has already been utilised: in the summer of 2003, AC Sikring began implementation in 9 sites, including two big schools, some childcare centers, afterschool youth facilities, and the district's huge storage location where they keep machines and materials for the maintenance of all roads, parks, etc. Focus On Problems With Vandalism "Several years ago, we had an incident with someone sneaking in to our storage location. They went wild driving around on our machines! Even though they couldn't get out of the gates, they still managed to destroy a lot of things on the property," recalls Nielsen. He further explains that such wanton destruction and vandalism creates the biggest costs for the municipality: last year they used a million crowns alone just on renovations of broken glass. This clearly illustrates that so-called ’small crimes’ are not really small at all when seen from the larger perspective. Vandalism is a big problem, but one that can be handled – and that's exactly what they are doing in Brøndby. "A year ago, we had another kind of problem," adds Susanne Ploug Larsen, who is the Risk Control Coordinator for Brøndby. "There were some very macabre activities where criminals were slaughtering the pets in an after-school youth center, leaving the body parts lying in the playground. They also spray-painted some horses. Understandably, it was a horrible experience for the employees to arrive at work the next day and discover the dismembered animals - not to mention the children's reactions." This institution was naturally one of the first chosen to receive the new security solution. The Old Security Approach "Four years ago, all the windows of a school were smashed to pieces one Friday night. The next day we started setting up an analog solution using videotapes and that was the beginning of our career in security," remembers Jørgen Nielsen. "We had to react fast, and the system was put together with products from five different suppliers and electricians with lots of cameras and tapes. It was expensive but at least there were no more broken windows there.” Shortly thereafter, they installed similar solutions in about 12 other institutions. The New Surveillance "Outdoor surveillance is installed to capture images of any vandalism or break-ins, and to allow Brøndby to be connected to our Video Alarm Central service called Security Point. This gives us the ability to react before a crime happens" "At the end of 2002, we asked for public offers based on plans for the new video surveillance project, which is expected to take place over the next four years. We contacted a security consultant, who confirmed our own research showing that the new solution should be future oriented. We got bids from seven different solutions, but chose Milestone as the most advanced and 100% digital. We believe this is the future; we do not believe in videotapes anymore. Now everything can be stored on a hard disk," states Nielsen. Brøndby already knew about AC Sikring as security specialists in the market, and chose them for their solid offer that was a combination of good service and high quality products. "It was precisely the solution we were looking for, with Milestone that is future-safe and more flexible for our overall needs," claims Nielsen. "We want to have better options for upgrading with ongoing technological developments." Only External Surveillance The buildings are monitored at night, on weekends and during holidays, when there are no personnel present. Brøndby has installed 70 cameras with infrared (IR) light, which means that they can record images at night, without the need for strong general lighting in the area that could bother neighbors. Another advantage is that the infrared light cannot be seen by anyone attempting criminal activities. Bent Schwartzbach, who is a manager at AC Sikring, says: "Outdoor surveillance is installed to capture images of any vandalism or break-ins, and to allow Brøndby to be connected to our Video Alarm Central service called Security Point. This gives us the ability to react before a crime happens. Through the network connection, our staff receive alarms when there is any motion detection, and they can quickly determine from any camera's recorded images if it's a matter for concern requiring action – for example, sending out guards to the location." "It's a big relief for any institution personnel leaving for the weekend or a vacation, to know that their place is monitored for protection," affirms Jørgen Nielsen. Open Communication "Some parents have been skeptical about the surveillance because they were afraid that their children might be monitored," remarks Susanne Ploug Larsen. "Therefore, we have chosen to be totally open about communicating exactly what it is being used for – to ensure safety and reduce vandalism. The response from parents since then has been one of understanding." Brøndby municipality's labor union and personnel organization have also accepted the idea that surveillance is being set up over the next several years. All the same, Brøndby continues to make a big effort to ensure that everyone involved understands the goals of making public areas safer. "It is only outdoor monitoring – nothing indoor where people are working," concludes Susanne Ploug Larsen. "So there's no reason for those kinds of worries." Employees at the institutions can feel much safer and more secure when they come to work: they know what our surveillance system is for," confirms Jørgen Nielsen. Fast Installations Childcare centers and playgrounds may need only four cameras, where larger schools can use 16 to 30 cameras. As of now, about 70 cameras have been set up over the summer in nine institutions that belong to the first phase of the project. Susanne Ploug Larsen has been involved in instruction sessions for the new system at the locations and reports: "It has gone really well. The training did not take very long, and the employees figured out quickly how the program works. Milestone is user-friendly and easy to navigate around in the images – in fact, they enjoyed it so much it was hard to tear them away from it!" "When the disk gets full of images, the system automatically overwrites the oldest files first to keep recording newer ones" Managed At Each Location The surveillance is set up for each institution to have someone in charge of managing the system. "At the schools, it is basically the Building Maintenance Manager or Vice Principal who checks the recordings and uses the system actively. They look at it in the mornings to see if there have been any irregularities during the night that they should do something about," Jørgen Nielsen explains. "It is pretty easy since the system is only set to record when motion is detected somewhere." Each location can decide for themselves when the system will record surveillance images, according to their respective opening hours, and in coordination with the Security Point Alarm Central. "Some schools have classes in the evenings, so they obviously would set their systems to start recording after 9 at night, whereas a childcare center closes at 5 p.m.," adds Susanne Ploug Larsen. Automatic Image Storing Brøndby has disk storage capacity for a good number of recordings, but there is no reason to save the files if nothing meaningful has taken place. "It is naturally of no interest whatsoever if Mr. Pedersen in the neighborhood has walked by with his dog at 11 o'clock," grins Jørgen Nielsen. Milestone software has intelligent functionality that allows them to only archive recordings where motion has been detected in the images. "When the disk gets full of images, the system automatically overwrites the oldest files first to keep recording newer ones," explains Susanne Ploug Larsen. "We have not set the software to archive anything during the day either, so we have enough disk capacity for a whole week's worth of images." Future Expansion Brøndby plans to implement the solution in 80-90 institutions that are slated to have the digital surveillance installed with the same user interface, by the time the project's budget is finally used up. About 300 cameras will be in operation with Milestone software by then. Integration with their burglar alarm system is also desired in the future. This is a good option with Milestone software, since it is built using an open design that allows the flexibility to integrate with other security devices and applications. Brøndby On The Forefront The spotlight is now on Brøndby as an example for other municipalities' security solutions. Jørgen Nielsen and Susanne Ploug Larsen have already received a number of referrals from other districts in the country who want to know more about their visionary way of handling public security problems and ensuring the safety of their citizens. "Right now there's a lot of focus on us," concludes Jørgen Nielsen. "Others have heard about our project with digital video surveillance and would like to do something similar. Susanne and I have held presentations for people responsible for security, other risk control coordinators and technicians, to tell them about our project and experiences."
Aigle, Switzerland is a historical small town in the region of Vaud, nestled in the heart of the vineyards. It is dominated by the impressive twelfth-century Château d’Aigle, an imposing fortification that once served to protect the populace. These days, however, the task requires more modern measures, for instance at the Aigle railway station – Vaud’s second most important, with three million passengers annually – many of whom use the facility’s parking garage when commuting by rail to Lausanne. The Crime Situation And The Safety Objectives The area around the train station had been the scene of frequent urban violence, requiring a strong police presence. In order to ensure a higher level of security for travelers and to prevent vandalism, the Aigle authorities have developed a security concept that includes a video surveillance installation with globally leading technology. Several potential partners were contacted after Swiss Federal Railways (CFF) approved the project, which required compliance with information-protection regulations, as well as consideration for the populace. The Project Decision And Acceptance By Authorities And Populace Panasonic IXA Systems SA was chosen as the partner by virtue of its concept of security in an overall context and its willingness to assist the town’s officials over a rather significant period. The company’s support is not limited to the technical details of surveillance video, but includes other aspects of security and its enhancement. Thus, IXA Systems SA revealed critical points and helped authorities draft the complex regulations. Thanks to that excellent preliminary work, the city of Aigle has been able to openly inform and protect the populace. The concept of security has thus been embraced and the video surveillance has been widely accepted. The IP Technology Security Solution The video surveillance project was completed in three months. IXA Systems installed a network of dome cameras in the area around the station square. Their integrated zoom function allows clear identification of people. Dome cameras, along with several fixed anti-vandalism cameras, are used in the parking area. The two police posts are also under surveillance. The pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras are highly sensitive, with very high resolution, and are protected by a robust sealed case. Data transmission is done over a network, and the dome cameras use wireless Ethernet. The control center consists of a server running the Milestone XProtect® Enterprise platform. XProtect Enterprise software is particularly suited for large distributed systems, with its many extendable functions. It has refined functions for recording, evaluating and transmitting video data, can be integrated with many other systems and can also be freely configured, thus significantly simplifying eventual extensions. At Aigle, access to the archived recorded data is reserved exclusively to two authorized parties. The images are stocked for a maximum of 96 hours and then irretrievably erased. Private areas within the monitored fields of view are masked to be invisible. Positive Experiences And Results The new solution has been operating since February 2009. The Milestone XProtect® software operation is intuitive and very simple for the surveillance personnel, including a guiding checklist from IXA Systems. The system proved its worth many times during the initial months: several delinquents were able to be identified and reported to the authorities. Experiences also revealed scope for improvements in the setup, and thanks to the system’s great adaptability, these were able to be accomplished for even better operations. In Summary In the context of the full security concept, the city of Aigle was looking for a reliable video surveillance system for the area around the railway station. With the Panasonic network and Milestone’s software platform, Aigle can now rely on a solid, modern system, ensuring long-term safety and enabling problem-free extensions should the need arise in future. Hardware And Software Panasonic WV-NW960 dome cameras Panasonic WV-NW484 anti-vandalism fixed dome cameras Milestone XProtect Enterprise IP video management software Synologie data storage system
Challenge: San Lucido in Italy is dependent on tourism, and needed a way to keep the city safe and attractive for citizens and tourists. The first step was to use technology to heighten the security level in the city to deal with incidents, improve city cleanliness and avoid graffiti in public areas. San Lucido also wanted to become more environmentally friendly by finding a way to keep the city clean and tidy for the benefit of the tourists and for the convenience of the citizens. They needed a solution that could grow with the city and help them utilize technology to become a Smart City – a city using a digital infrastructure to perform better services. Solution: Milestone Partner GSA di Guido Luigi based in Polistena RC, installed Milestone XProtect Express to manage 36 Axis cameras located in public areas in the city such as streets, parks and public buildings. The local police and security managers of public institutions can get an overview of all cameras with XProtect Smart Client, an easy-to-manage timeline that enables the police to examine incidents quickly and make informed decisions. The Milestone Mobile client for smartphones enables rapid response by the local police force as they can have full situational awareness even when patrolling. Advantage: San Lucido has successfully entered the first phase of becoming a Smart City. Because of the high image quality, surveillance video can be used to identify perpetrators or graffiti painters. Abandoned waste can easily be detected to ensure the city stays an attractive tourist destination. Because of Milestone’s open platform technology San Lucido can integrate with third-party software to become even smarter in the future. The city is also able to expand the solution easily to cover more parts of the city. Milestone Helps San Lucido To Be An Attractive City To Tourists And Citizens San Lucido is heavily dependent on tourism as a source of income for the local businesses. A high level of safety is a very important factor for being an attractive city to tourists and local citizens. Another factor is the cleanliness of the city. Waste in the streets is a burden to the environment if it is not detected and disposed correctly and rapidly. The city also has to cover the cost of cleaning up and disposing the garbage left in the streets. With the Milestone video security system they are able to give the wrongdoers a fine in case of illegal dumping and make sure to remove the waste to ensure a clean city for the benefit of inhabitants and tourists. The city’s plan to become a Smart City is a part of a larger project initiated by the European Union with the goal of improving the quality of life and making cities more sustainable. The Smart City concept overall includes making better use of resources and ensure less pollution. It means smarter urban transport, upgraded water supply and waste disposal, and more efficient ways to light and heat buildings. It also encompasses a more interactive and responsive city administration and safer public spaces. San Lucido has entered the first phase of their Smart City initiative. In this phase they want to heighten the security level at all public areas to ensure a safe city for inhabitants and tourists. The focus is primarily on avoiding misdoings, graffiti and other destruction of public property. The city also wanted to become more environmentally friendly by finding a way to deal with garbage dumping in the streets. Milestone Mobile Improves Service Quality Milestone Partner GSA di Guido Luigi based in Polistena RC, installed Milestone XProtect Express to manage a mix of motoried speed dome cameras and fixed cameras from Axis. The 36 cameras are located in public areas in the city such as streets, parks and public buildings. The city police and security managers of the different public institutions have access to the video security system, to ensure that the relevant authorities have situational awareness of the city. San Lucido also uses Milestone Mobile allowing police and security managers to remotely monitor the public areas. That enables them to check up on different locations even when they are not near a computer. A police officer out patrolling in one area of the city will be able to check up on other parts through a smartphone enabling the local police to always be on top of the situation. Officers will be alerted if an alarm goes off by the alarm manager in XProtect Smart Client or by getting a push notification in the Milestone Mobile app. The images received by the officers will be real time, giving them the possibility for rapid and more efficient response. San Lucido city has recognized the value in investing in the future city and is already talking about rolling out next phase of the project: “We have taken the first steps to become a city of the future with the help of Milestone’s video software. We are also considering integrating Milestone’s software with other technologies such as license plate recognition and video analytics to become a true Smart City,” says Fabio Frangella, Security Councilor, San Lucido City. Easy To Expand The Solution Because Milestone XProtect is built on an open platform technology, San Lucido can easily add other technologies to reach their goal of becoming a Smart City. Besides LPR software and video analytics the city is also thinking about integrating Milestone XProtect with traffic classification software to clear traffic jams. They are also considering doing an integration that connects an audio IP speakers system with the tourist information panels located at the different sights to improve the experience of visiting the city for tourists. Because of the open platform technology everything is made possible. A smart city uses digital technologies or information and communication technologies (ICT) to enhance quality and performance of urban services, to reduce costs and resource consumption, and to engage more effectively and actively with its citizens. The flexibility and future proof design of Milestone’s video software enables cities to reach these goals and become metropolitans of the future.
Customer: Alburtis is a borough in Lehigh County, PA and a suburb of Allentown, PA in the Lehigh Valley region of the state. Residents in the borough of Alburtis, PA, can dispose of lawn clippings, tree limbs and shrubs at the local yard waste center. However, Leigh County needed to prevent disposal at the center of prohibited items such as construction debris, propane tanks and household garbage. The borough has a lot at stake in its efforts to prevent illegal dumping - from possible damage to the environment to harmful fumes, toxicity and deadly fire risk. More specifically, the Alburtis Police Department wanted the ability to clearly identify anyone dumping prohibited items, and to see what type of materials they were dumping via remote video monitors at the police station and borough building. Arecont Vision Video Surveillance System Alburtis was able to accomplish its surveillance objectives with a video surveillance system that uses only three cameras – two Arecont Vision MegaDome® AV1355DN 1.3 Megapixel H.264 day/night dome cameras for license plate viewing, and one Arecont Vision 180-degree Panoramic AV8185 8 Megapixel H.264 camera for a comprehensive view of the waste center yard. The single panoramic camera installed provides as much coverage as up to 24 standard resolution cameras. The borough turned to Michael Miller, President of The Wire Guys located in Alburtis, PA to design and install the cameras, server, system setup, and provide training. Mr. Miller recommended Arecont Vision cameras because of their competitive pricing, H.264 compression to minimize bandwidth and storage needs, and because of the availability of a 180-degree panoramic megapixel solution. The newly installed system at Alburtis’ yard waste center is integrated with an existing video surveillance system at the borough building/police station via a cable modem that streams live video back to the police station for remote live viewing and web viewing from police cars over a cellular network. The system employs network video recorder (NVR) software from Exacq Technologies and a Wire Guys custom-built network video recorder (NVR) with 750 GB of storage. The collaboration between Arecont Vision and Exacq Technologies ensured interoperability of Arecont Vision’s megapixel cameras with the ExacqVision NVR platform. The Arecont Vision MegaDome® AV1355DN 1.3 Megapixel H.264 day/night dome cameras provide 1280x1024-pixel images at 32 frames per second. The all-in-one integrated camera, lens and IP66-rated dome housing features a 1/2” CMOS sensor and Arecont Vision's MegaVideo® technology that processes video at 80 billion operations per second. The camera uses H.264 (MPEG 4, Part 10) compression to minimize bandwidth and storage requirements while maintaining real-time image frame rate. Additional capabilities include motion detection, image cropping and region-of-interest streaming. Light sensitivity of 0.1 lux at F1.4 enables low-light viewing and recording, and the day/night version used by the borough of Alburtis has a motorized infrared (IR) cut filter. The Arecont Vision 180-degree Panoramic AV8185 8 Megapixel H.264 camera with MegaVideo® technology is an 8 megapixel network camera with four 2-megapixel sensors that provides up to 6,400 x 1,200 pixel images at 5.5 frames per second (fps). The camera can be set for lower resolutions at higher frame speeds, such as 1,600 x 1,200 pixel images at 22 fps or 800 x 600 pixel images at 88 fps, and combines both H.264 (MPEG 4, Part 10) and JPEG compression. Light sensitivity is 0.2 lux at F2.0, and the AV8185 provides image cropping with up to four regions of interest. The Arecont Vision cameras provide the borough of Alburtis with an ideal combination of HD image quality, variable frame rates, low bandwidth, and lower storage requirements. Exceptional Coverage Capabilities Of Arecont’s Megapixel Solutions The Arecont Vision cameras provide the borough of Alburtis with an ideal combination of HD image quality, variable frame rates, low bandwidth, and lower storage requirements During the proposal phase of the project, users at the borough were almost instantly impressed and convinced that the exceptional resolution and coverage capabilities of Arecont Vision’s megapixel solutions provided the resolution they needed for both real-time and playback modes to enforce local ordinances. Alburtis system operators can zoom in for up-close views, even on stored images, view specific parts of a larger image – a person's face or a license plate number – without any loss of detail. The Arecont Vision cameras have proven to the borough that megapixel imaging is suitable for almost any application and represents a significant upgrade in system functionality compared to standard-resolution cameras. In addition to lower bandwidth and storage requirements, megapixel cameras dramatically decrease costs related to other elements of a system, such as fewer software licenses, less cabling, fewer lenses, and a decrease in the man-hours needed to implement the system. The system has already proven successful to date allowing the police to identify and issue citations to people who discard anything but acceptable yard waste. “People were using the location to discard everything from old decks and propane tanks to household trash,” said Alburtis Police Chief Robert Palmer. “We wanted a system that could be used to identify people's faces, to read their license plates and to see what they are disposing of. We were able to meet those requirement using only three Arecont megapixel cameras as part of a simple system at a very reasonable cost.” “The customer is very happy with the system and has had no issues,” said Mr. Miller. “Arecont Vision gave us the ability to meet the customer's system requirements with only three cameras, which would not have been possible with any other imaging solution on the market.”