Ho Chi Minh City welcomes Vietnam’s largest trade fair for the safety, security and fire sectors this week, as security industry stakeholders from around the world gather at the Saigon Exhibition and Convention Center for the 11th edition of Secutech Vietnam.

The rising security requirements of Vietnam’s commercial and residential property sectors have set the stage for a fruitful three days of business at the show, which takes place from 16 – 18 August 2018. A new zone showcasing smart home and smart building technology is among numerous additions, which have seen total exhibition space climb 11% to a new record of 10,000 sqm (2017: 9000 sqm).

Government & Commercial Sector Security

A new record has also been set for the exhibitor list, which has expanded by 13% to include a total of 310 solution providers from 19 countries and regions (2017: 270 exhibitors). A strong international contingent includes brands from China, Croatia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, the UAE, the UK, the US and Vietnam. The diverse line-up is expected to be a strong draw for trade visitors, which are predicted to increase in number from last year’s total of 12,097.

Vietnam is continuing to establish itself as one of the most significant security markets in the ASEAN region"

Speaking optimistically ahead of the show’s opening, Ms Regina Tsai, Deputy General Manager of Messe Frankfurt New Era Business Media Ltd, said: “Vietnam is continuing to establish itself as one of the most significant security markets in the ASEAN region. The commercial and residential property sectors are just one driving force behind these positive conditions. An increase in urban infrastructure projects and strong GDP growth are also two significant factors. We expect to see a good mix of government and commercial sector buyers through the doors over the coming days, a high proportion of which will be system integrators, distributors and end users.”

Safety, Security & Home Automation

A convenient sourcing experience awaits buyers at the fair in the shape of three distinct product zones. Namely, the Security Zone, the Fire Safety & Rescue Zone and the Smart Building & Smart Home Zone. A strong line-up of brands represented across these zones include ASTEC, Bosch, Dahua, Hanwha Techwin, Samsung, Seagate, TECHCARD, Nha An Toan, Phuong Viet, VIETSAFE and many more.

Of particular interest to system integrators, distributors and end users in the smart home sector will be SMAhome, which makes its debut at Secutech Vietnam this year to serve as the IoT technology platform for Vietnam’s smart home market. Products on display here will reflect the modern drive towards increased home automation including home automation kits, IoT gateways, smart locks and smart surveillance systems. The new coming Z-Wave Pavilion will also spark the interest of buyers in the smart home sector with an array of Z-Wave solutions for home and building.

Certified Fire Systems And Products    

A further addition to the list of debutants is the Singapore Pavilion. Led by the Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (ASME), the pavilion comprises surveillance solutions, facial recognition technology, modular control platforms and key management systems that have various security applications for home, building, factory and much more. 

The UL Pavilion will feature seven suppliers from around the world to display their latest UL-certified fire systems and products

Two returning pavilions in the Fire Safety & Rescue zone will also add to the product line-up on the show flow. The Korea Fire Institute Pavilion brings leading companies to demonstrate their range of fire extinguishers, fire alarms, hoses, smoke detectors, firefighting suits and escape chutes, while the UL Pavilion will feature seven suppliers from around the world to display their latest UL-certified fire systems and products.    

Fire Safeguarding Solutions For Factories

Fire & Safety Rescue Seminar and Smart Solutions Vietnam forum to serve as information exchange platforms for growing markets

In addition to exploring the varied product offerings at the show, stakeholders in the fire and safety sectors will have ample opportunities to gain industry insights at the returning Fire & Safety Rescue Seminar. A highlight will be discussions on applications for industry 4.0, while experts from Firesmart, GP International Technology, the Korea Fire Institute, Nhuan Phat, Pyrovia, SmartZ and UL will also gather to examine fire safeguarding solutions for factory, building and personal safety.

Integrated Security Solutions

Meanwhile, visitors looking to learn about new technologies and integrated security solutions for the vertical markets of smart city, smart building, smart home, smart transportation and smart factory will have an excellent opportunity to do so during the Smart Solutions Vietnam forum.

Held concurrently on the second day of the show, the forum provides a platform for suppliers Bosch, ICP DAS, Kedacom, Samsung, Seagate and Western Digital to deliver presentations on their newest product offerings. Topics will include ‘Integrated Solutions for Smart Transportation and Smart Buildings’ as well as ‘4G Mobile Surveillance for Smart City Solution’. The forum will be followed by a business networking party to give attendees the chance to form new business connections.

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Water Plant Attack Emphasizes Cyber’s Impact On Physical Security
Water Plant Attack Emphasizes Cyber’s Impact On Physical Security

At an Oldsmar, Fla., water treatment facility on Feb. 5, an operator watched a computer screen as someone remotely accessed the system monitoring the water supply and increased the amount of sodium hydroxide from 100 parts per million to 11,100 parts per million. The chemical, also known as lye, is used in small concentrations to control acidity in the water. In larger concentrations, the compound is poisonous – the same corrosive chemical used to eat away at clogged drains. The impact of cybersecurity attacks The incident is the latest example of how cybersecurity attacks can translate into real-world, physical security consequences – even deadly ones.Cybersecurity attacks on small municipal water systems have been a concern among security professionals for years. The computer system was set up to allow remote access only to authorized users. The source of the unauthorized access is unknown. However, the attacker was only in the system for 3 to 5 minutes, and an operator corrected the concentration back to 100 parts per million soon after. It would have taken a day or more for contaminated water to enter the system. In the end, the city’s water supply was not affected. There were other safeguards in place that would have prevented contaminated water from entering the city’s water supply, which serves around 15,000 residents. The remote access used for the attack was disabled pending an investigation by the FBI, Secret Service and Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. On Feb. 2, a compilation of breached usernames and passwords, known as COMB for “Compilation of Many Breaches,” was leaked online. COMB contains 3.2 billion unique email/password pairs. It was later discovered that the breach included the credentials for the Oldsmar water plant. Water plant attacks feared for years Cybersecurity attacks on small municipal water systems have been a concern among security professionals for years. Florida’s Sen. Marco Rubio tweeted that the attempt to poison the water supply should be treated as a “matter of national security.” “The incident at the Oldsmar water treatment plant is a reminder that our nation’s critical infrastructure is continually at risk; not only from nation-state attackers, but also from malicious actors with unknown motives and goals,” comments Mieng Lim, VP of Product Management at Digital Defense Inc., a provider of vulnerability management and threat assessment solutions.The attack on Oldsmar’s water treatment system shows how critical national infrastructure is increasingly becoming a target for hackers as organizations bring systems online “Our dependency on critical infrastructure – power grids, utilities, water supplies, communications, financial services, emergency services, etc. – on a daily basis emphasizes the need to ensure the systems are defended against any adversary,” Mieng Lim adds. “Proactive security measures are crucial to safeguard critical infrastructure systems when perimeter defenses have been compromised or circumvented. We have to get back to the basics – re-evaluate and rebuild security protections from the ground up.” "This event reinforces the increasing need to authenticate not only users, but the devices and machine identities that are authorized to connect to an organization's network,” adds Chris Hickman, Chief Security Officer at digital identity security vendor Keyfactor. “If your only line of protection is user authentication, it will be compromised. It's not necessarily about who connects to the system, but what that user can access once they're inside. "If the network could have authenticated the validity of the device connecting to the network, the connection would have failed because hackers rarely have possession of authorized devices. This and other cases of hijacked user credentials can be limited or mitigated if devices are issued strong, crypto-derived, unique credentials like a digital certificate. In this case, it looks like the network had trust in the user credential but not in the validity of the device itself. Unfortunately, this kind of scenario is what can happen when zero trust is your end state, not your beginning point." “The attack on Oldsmar’s water treatment system shows how critical national infrastructure is increasingly becoming a target for hackers as organizations bring systems online for the first time as part of digital transformation projects,” says Gareth Williams, Vice President - Secure Communications & Information Systems, Thales UK. “While the move towards greater automation and connected switches and control systems brings unprecedented opportunities, it is not without risk, as anything that is brought online immediately becomes a target to be hacked.” Operational technology to mitigate attacks Williams advises organizations to approach Operational Technology as its own entity and put in place procedures that mitigate against the impact of an attack that could ultimately cost lives. This means understanding what is connected, who has access to it and what else might be at risk should that system be compromised, he says. “Once that is established, they can secure access through protocols like access management and fail-safe systems.”  “The cyberattack against the water supply in Oldsmar should come as a wakeup call,” says Saryu Nayyar, CEO, Gurucul.  “Cybersecurity professionals have been talking about infrastructure vulnerabilities for years, detailing the potential for attacks like this, and this is a near perfect example of what we have been warning about,” she says.  Although this attack was not successful, there is little doubt a skilled attacker could execute a similar infrastructure attack with more destructive results, says Nayyar. Organizations tasked with operating and protecting critical public infrastructure must assume the worst and take more serious measures to protect their environments, she advises. Fortunately, there were backup systems in place in Oldsmar. What could have been a tragedy instead became a cautionary tale. Both physical security and cybersecurity professionals should pay attention.

Expert Roundup: Healthy Buildings, Blockchain, AI, Skilled Workers, And More
Expert Roundup: Healthy Buildings, Blockchain, AI, Skilled Workers, And More

Our Expert Panel Roundtable is an opinionated group. However, for a variety of reasons, we are sometimes guilty of not publishing their musings in a timely manner. At the end of 2020, we came across several interesting comments among those that were previously unpublished. Following is a catch-all collection of those responses, addressing some of the most current and important issues in the security marketplace in 2021.

Smart Offices: How Is Mobile ID Changing The Way We Access The Office?
Smart Offices: How Is Mobile ID Changing The Way We Access The Office?

If you’re a security or facilities manager, you may already be aware of the quiet revolution that’s taking place across businesses and organizations up and down the country. By the end of 2020, 20% of all ID and access control systems featured mobile capability, and this is set to increase by a further 34% over the next three years. There’s no doubt that using a smartphone or mobile device in place of traditional credential and access control is a growing trend that’s only been sped up by the pandemic. It’s true that many businesses are still very much focused on remote working, although many are now starting to implement new-and-improved strategies that are better suited to protect the workforce moving forward. Mobile ID systems As the next normal becomes clearer, businesses will be reviewing procedures such as access control, occupancy monitoring, reducing touch points, and tracking visitors. Mobile ID systems are ideally suited to this task. But what are the key reasons for considering such a setup in 2021? But why is this new technology so well-suited to future-proof your physical access system, and why is it becoming so popular? Eradicating outdated legacy credentials Have you seen just how vulnerable outdated Proximity card technology can be? Low-frequency 125kHz cards can be cloned in a matter of seconds with the use of cheap, readily available tools. Despite their weaknesses, they are still used by a huge majority of businesses – big and small. All smartphones include two industry-standard features that make them perfect for operating a secure, contactless credential Replacing such a system with a mobile-enabled system is one of the best ways to increase security ten-fold. Thanks to a cloud-based infrastructure, mobile ID offers best-in-class security and cryptography. All smartphones include two industry-standard features that make them perfect for operating a secure, contactless credential. Bluetooth Smart and NFC (Near Field Communication) make them the best product to operate such a credential via a secure app. If you’re looking for best-in-class security in 2021, mobile access is most definitely the way forward. Removing touch points across the business Reducing touch points and the adoption of touchless facilities has become a key priority for businesses in the wake of COVID-19. Even as businesses start to return to the office and operate a home/office split, it will be imperative that unnecessary contact is kept to an absolute minimum between staff. The traditional issuance of identification and access control credentials can pose problems in this regard. Facility and security managers who are responsible for onboarding and processing ID have done the process face to face. Mobile access makes it possible to carry this process out without people coming into direct content. First, the security manager has access to a secure portal, allowing them to create, manage and edit credentials anywhere. They can upload and remotely transfer mobile ID and access control credentials directly to users’ smartphones over the air. Via the secure app, users can view and see their credentials and immediately begin using it for ID and access control by simply placing their smartphone over card readers. Enabling a more flexible way of working The way in which we work has changed for good. Even as people more people return to the office in 2021, a majority of businesses will be operating a home/office split indefinitely. This once again reinforces the need for a smarter, more adaptable onboarding system. Implementing mobile ID is the perfect way of doing this: over-the-air delivery of credentials and security data is now a given, helping businesses create the perfect balance between the home and the office. No longer do people have to come into the office for the onboarding process. Increasing convenience and user experience More often businesses are realising the value mobile ID can have for enhancing the work experience as well as security Ok, so mobile ID is the perfect way of increasing security and adapting workplaces to a post-COVID way of working. And we’ve not even touched on the most obvious advantage yet: Convenience. How many times have you forgotten your ID card? We’re sure it’s more times than you forget your smartphone. These powerful processors have become intertwined with the way we carry out tasks on a daily basis. They’re so vital that people will soon notice if they’ve forgotten it. From an employee’s perspective, mobile ID and access control is simple, convenient, and extremely user-friendly. More and more businesses are realizing the value mobile ID can have for enhancing the work experience as well as security. From the employer’s perspective, mobile ID means it’s easier for administrators to manage access and credentials. Future-proofing access control now will ensure that in the longer term, mobile ID is well worth the investment. The annual expenditure of printing ID cards and purchasing credentials can be vast, while reissuance costs can also quickly add up for larger organizations. These issues are a thing of the past for businesses using mobile ID. Mobile ID perfect tool for 2021 and beyond Until mobile ID, new and improved credentials’ main focus was on increasing security. Mobile ID not only delivers that, but it also provides a more convenient way of accessing the office in a way that’s perfectly suited to returning to the office in 2021. If there was ever a time to upgrade, now is the time. Summing up, mobile access is changing the way we access the office by: Eliminating weak links in security systems such as outdated legacy card technologies Eradicating the need for touch points across multiple areas of the workplace Enabling a smarter, more flexible approach to onboarding Increasing convenience – for both employers and employees.