Observation systems & accessories - Expert commentary

Lessons Learned With AxxonSoft: How Have You Adapted To The COVID-19 Pandemic?
Lessons Learned With AxxonSoft: How Have You Adapted To The COVID-19 Pandemic?

The coronavirus pandemic has brought about an unprecedented crisis for businesses and individuals. It has also created a new normal, notwithstanding the disruption to our lives, ultimately changing life as we knew it. However, our resilience as humans will ensure that we survive and become better, stronger, and more determined than ever before. As I mentioned, both businesses and individuals have struggled significantly to balance the need for safety versus survival. But at AxxonSoft, we remain committed to keeping our people safe, while ensuring that our support and commitment to our clients are not compromised. Ensuring business continuity At AxxonSoft, our vision has always been to ensure business continuity through enhanced safety and video surveillance offerings. Adhering to the COVID-19 regulations, we are prescribing to social distancing to slow the spread of the virus. As such, we are utilising this time to ensure that our service offering is optimized to afford our clients the ability to repurpose and extend their remote working viabilities. As an essential service provider, we have ensured that we are providing the right tools to our clients to comply with regulations. Our video analytics and face recognition services have no reliance on on-site control rooms and, therefore, clients’ security solutions and personal safety are not compromised. Innovation reimagined During these precarious times, our focus remains on support and service. Our development team continues to work tirelessly to ensure that you can use our software during the lockdown and have accelerated innovation to this end. While we must maintain social distancing, we can and will still be of service to our community Therefore, we are proud to present version 4.11 of the Intellect PSIM, which offers our clients a neural network-based analytical tracker which recognises specific types of objects, such as humans and vehicles. We have also equipped this version with video wall management interface, automatic object tracking and a web reporting subsystem. Behavioral analytics generates data by detecting specific postures, like crouching, shooting or any potentially dangerous scenario. Our surveillance software operates on a three-pronged approach: calibration, detection and measurement, offering a comprehensive bird’s-eye view to clients. This upgrade also upholds mandated social distancing measures and keeps any face-to-face meetings to a minimal. The silver lining is that you can even use this technology when the pandemic is over. Now that’s what I call experiencing the next with AxxonSoft! Finding solutions to the challenges Our specialist technology and frontline technical support staff will ensure that your business is protected during and post-lockdown. We will continue to ensure that we provide solutions to the new challenges that the coronavirus brings, ensuring that our clients can emerge stronger and more responsive to any changes in the future. Our surveillance software operates on a three-pronged approach: calibration, detection and measurement While we must maintain social distancing, we can and will still be of service to our community. After all, change is not just about technology but about mastering mindsets. The COVID-19 disaster has demanded that businesses embrace tech disruptions as early as possible and apply technology in imaginative ways to define the new world of work. Until next time, stay safe!

The Digital Transformation Of Modern Access Control Solutions
The Digital Transformation Of Modern Access Control Solutions

The safeguarding of premises through the monitoring of entrance and exit points has traditionally been a very manual aspect of security. Human operators have been relied on to make decisions about who to admit and deny based on levels of authorization and the appropriate credentials. The access control business, like many industries before it, is undergoing its own digital transformation But the access control business, like many industries before it, is undergoing its own digital transformation; one where the protection of premises, assets and people is increasingly delivered by interconnected systems utilising IoT devices and cloud infrastructure to offer greater levels of security and protection. Modern access control solutions range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification, right through to complex networks of thermal cameras, audio speakers and sensors. These systems, connected through the cloud, can be customized and scaled to meet the precise requirements of today’s customer. And it’s the ease of cloud integration, combined with open technologies and platforms that is encouraging increasing collaboration and exciting developments while rendering legacy systems largely unfit for purpose. Remote management and advanced diagnostics Cloud technology and IoT connectivity means remote management and advanced diagnostics form an integral part of every security solution.Cloud technology and IoT connectivity means remote management and advanced diagnostics form an integral part of every security solution. For example, as the world faces an unprecedented challenge and the COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause disruption, the ability to monitor and manage access to sites remotely is a welcome advantage for security teams who might otherwise have to check premises in person and risk breaking social distancing regulations. The benefits of not physically having to be on site extend to the locations within which these technologies can be utilised. As an example, within a critical infrastructure energy project, access can be granted remotely for maintenance on hard to reach locations. Advanced diagnostics can also play a part in such a scenario. When access control is integrated with video surveillance and IP audio, real-time monitoring of access points can identify possible trespassers with automated audio messages used to deter illegal access and making any dangers clear. And with video surveillance in the mix, high quality footage can be provided to authorities with real-time evidence of a crime in progress. Comprehensive protection in retail The use of connected technologies for advanced protection extends to many forward-looking applications. Within the retail industry, autonomous, cashier-less stores are already growing in popularity. Customers are able to use mobile technology to self-scan their chosen products and make payments, all from using a dedicated app. From an access control and security perspective, connected doors can be controlled to protect staff and monitor shopper movement. Remote management includes tasks such as rolling out firmware updates or restarting door controllers, with push notifications sent immediately to security personnel in the event of a breach or a door left open. Remote monitoring access control in storage In the storage facility space, this too can now be entirely run through the cloud with remote monitoring of access control and surveillance providing a secure and streamlined service. There is much to gain from automating the customer journey, where storage lockers are selected online and, following payment, customers are granted access. Through an app the customer can share their access with others, check event logs, and activate notifications. With traditional padlocks the sharing of access is not as practical, and it’s not easy for managers to keep a record of storage locker access. Online doors and locks enable monitoring capabilities and heightened security for both operators and customers. The elimination of manual tasks, in both scenarios, represents cost savings. When doors are connected to the cloud, their geographical location is rendered largely irrelevant. Online doors and locks enable monitoring capabilities and heightened security for both operators and customers They become IoT devices which are fully integrated and remotely programmable from anywhere, at any time. This creates a powerful advantage for the managers of these environments, making it possible to report on the status of a whole chain of stores, or to monitor access to numerous storage facilities, using the intelligence that the technology provides from the data it collects. Open platforms powers continuous innovation All of these examples rely on open technology to make it possible, allowing developers and technology providers to avoid the pitfalls that come with the use of proprietary systems. The limitations of such systems have meant that the ideas, designs and concepts of the few have stifled the creativity and potential of the many, holding back innovation and letting the solutions become tired and their application predictable. Proprietary systems have meant that solution providers have been unable to meet their customers’ requirements until the latest upgrade becomes available or a new solution is rolled out. This use of open technology enables a system that allows for collaboration, the sharing of ideas and for the creation of partnerships to produce ground-breaking new applications of technology. Open systems demonstrate a confidence in a vendor’s own solutions and a willingness to share and encourage others to innovate and to facilitate joint learning. An example of the dynamic use of open technology is Axis’ physical access control hardware, which enables partners to develop their own cloud-based software for control and analysis of access points, all the while building and expanding on Axis’ technology platform. Modern access control solutions range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification Opportunities for growth Open hardware, systems and platforms create opportunities for smaller and younger companies to participate and compete, giving them a good starting point, and some leverage within the industry when building and improving upon existing, proven technologies. This is important for the evolution and continual relevance of the physical security industry in a digitally enabled world. Through increased collaboration across technology platforms, and utilising the full range of possibilities afforded by the cloud environment, the manufacturers, vendors and installers of today’s IP enabled access control systems can continue to create smart solutions to meet the ever-changing demands and requirements of their customers across industry.

5 Key Ways To Ensure End-to-end Perimeter Protection
5 Key Ways To Ensure End-to-end Perimeter Protection

Critical infrastructure facilities that must secure large areas with extended outer boundary and numerous entry points, present a particularly difficult challenge when it comes to perimeter protection. As such, true end-to-end perimeter protection calls for the utilization of a sophisticated, multi-layered solution that is capable of defending against anticipated threats. Integrated systems that incorporate thermal imaging, visible cameras, radar and strong command and control software are crucial for covering the various potential areas of attacks. Let’s look at these technologies and the five key functions they enable to achieve an end-to-end solution that provides intrusion detection, assessment and defense for the perimeter. 1. Threat Recognition The first step in effectively defending against a threat is recognizing that it’s there. By combining state-of-the-art intrusion detection technologies, facilities can arm themselves with a head start against possible intruders. An exceptionally important aspect of effective perimeter protection is the ability to conduct 24-hour surveillance, regardless of weather conditions, environmental settings, or time of day. Visible cameras do not perform as well in low light scenarios and inclement weather conditions. However, thermal imaging cameras can provide constant protection against potential intruders, regardless of visual limitations, light source or many environmental factors. In fact, facilities such as power stations located near bodies of water can use thermal cameras to create what is known as a “thermal virtual fence” in areas where they are unable to utilize the protection of a physical fence or wall. Deterring suspicious activity can be achieved through real-time two-way audio, a simple but powerful tool Critical infrastructure applications require not only continuous video surveillance and monitoring, but also a solution that yields highly reliable intrusion detection, with fewer false alarms. This need makes advanced video analytics a must for any adequate surveillance system. Features like dynamic event detection and simplified data presentation are game changing in supporting accurate intrusion analysis and facilitating a proactive response. Advanced analytics will provide multiple automated alarm notification options, including email, edge image storage, digital outputs or video management software (VMS) alarms. Incorporating high quality, unique and adaptive analytics can virtually eliminate false alarms, allowing security personnel to respond more efficiently and effectively, while also lowering overall cost for the end user. While surveillance technologies such as radar, thermal imaging and visible cameras, or video analytics work well on their own, utilizing all of these options together provides an advanced perimeter detection system. For example, ground surveillance radar can detect possible threats beyond the fence line as they approach and send a signal to pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras, triggering them to slew to a specific location. From there, embedded analytics and visible cameras can further identify objects, notify authorized staff, and collect additional evidence through facial recognition or high-quality photos. 2. Automatic Response Systems Once an intrusion attempt is discovered, it is important to act fast. Organizing a response system that can initiate actions based on GPS location data, such as the slewing of PTZ cameras, automated intruder tracking or activated lighting sensors, greatly increases staff’s situational awareness while easing their workload. For instance, thermal imagers deployed in conjunction with video analytics can be used to generate an initial alarm event, which can then trigger a sequence of other security equipment and notifications for personnel to eventually respond to. Having all of this in place essentially lays the entire situation out in a way that allows responders to accurately understand and evaluate a scene. Power stations located near bodies of water can use thermal cameras to create a “thermal virtual fence” in areas where they are unable to utilize the protection of a physical fence or wall 3. Deterring Suspicious Activity  After the designated auto-response mechanisms have activated and done their job, it is time for responders to acknowledge and assess the situation. From here, authorized personnel can take the next appropriate step toward defending against and delaying the threat. Deterring suspicious activity can be achieved through real-time two-way audio, a simple but powerful tool. Often, control room operators can diffuse a situation by speaking over an intercom, telling the trespasser that they are being watched and that the authorities have been notified. This tactic, known as ‘talk down’, also allows officers to view the intruder’s reaction to their commands and evaluate what they feel the best next step is. If individuals do not respond in a desired manner, it may be time to take more serious action and dispatch a patrolman to the area. 4. Delay, Defend, Dispatch And Handle The possible danger has been identified, recognized and evaluated. Now it is time to effectively defend against current attacks and slow down both cyber and physical perpetrators’ prospective efforts. Through the use of a well-designed, open platform VMS, security monitors can manage edge devices and other complementary intrusion detection and response technologies, including acoustic sensors, video analytics, access control and radio dispatch. A robust VMS also enables operators to control functions such as video replay, geographical information systems tracking, email alerts and hand-off to law enforcement. With the right combination of technologies, facilities can take monitoring and evidence collection to the next level The primary purpose of the delay facet of the overall perimeter protection strategy is to stall an attempted intrusion long enough for responders to act. Access control systems play a key role in realizing this objective. When a security officer sees a non-compliant, suspicious individual on the camera feed, the officer can lock all possible exits to trap them in one area all through the VMS. 5. Intelligence: Collect Evidence And Debrief More data and intelligence collected from an event equals more crucial evidence for crime resolution and valuable insight for protecting against future incidents. With the right combination of technologies, facilities can take monitoring and evidence collection to the next level. One innovative resource that has become available is a live streaming application that can be uploaded to smart phones and used for off-site surveillance. This app gives personnel the power to follow intruders with live video anywhere and allows operators to monitor alarm video in real-time. Geographic Information System (GIS) maps are computer systems utilized for capturing, storing, reviewing, and displaying location related data. Capable of displaying various types of data on one map, this system enables users to see, analyze, easily and efficiently. Multi-sensor cameras, possessing both visible and thermal capabilities, provide high-contrast imaging for superb analytic detection (in any light) and High Definition video for evidence such as facial ID or license plate capture. Integrating these two, usually separated, camera types into one helps to fill any gaps that either may normally have. Still, in order to capture and store all of this valuable information and more, a robust, VMS is required. Recorded video, still images and audio clips serve as valuable evidence in the event that a trial must take place to press charges. Control room operators can use data collection tools within their VMS to safely transfer video evidence from the field to the courtroom with just a few clicks of their mouse. More advanced video management systems can go a step further and package this data with other pertinent evidence to create a comprehensive report to help ensure conviction.

Latest Vanderbilt Industries news

Vanderbilt Announces VCredential Cloud-Based Credential Management Platform
Vanderbilt Announces VCredential Cloud-Based Credential Management Platform

Vanderbilt, a global provider of state-of-the-art security systems, announced the launch of their VCredential cloud-based credential management platform. Following the introduction of the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) reader family in conjunction with ACT Enterprise in October 2019, Vanderbilt’s increased expansion in this market responds to the continuing trend toward virtualization and a shift toward touchless door access.  VCredential is a cloud-based credential management platform that offers users the ability to create and manage Bluetooth credentials independent of the access control platform. It’s key benefit focuses on intuitive usability and the opportunity to benefit from the latest industry technology trends. Market expansion We confidently believe that being able to offer Bluetooth credentials through all of our systems builds on our success" “VCredential clearly expands our footing in this market following our successful Bluetooth reader launch last year. Now, our BLE readers no longer only support our award-winning ACT Enterprise system. Instead, thanks to the VCredential platform, they support all Vanderbilt systems. This includes OMNIS, ACT365, SPC, as well as multiple third-party partner systems,” explains Nadine Frost, Senior Product Manager at Vanderbilt International.  “We confidently believe that being able to offer Bluetooth credentials through all of our systems builds on our success in the market to date. It brings our product offering to the next level,” finishes Frost. The benefits of Bluetooth has always been convenience and ease-of-use. Following a global pandemic, they have never been more apparent or needed. This is the take of Ross Wilks, Head of Marketing Communications at Vanderbilt International.  Smartphone convenience Smartphone credentials are time and cost-effective alternatives to managing physical credentials" “For example, smartphone credentials are time and cost-effective alternatives to managing physical credentials," said Wilks. "Their convenience is that they enable mobile phones to be used just like a traditional access control card or tag.” “Moreover, the creation and management of Bluetooth credentials can be carried out by the administrator directly in the cloud-based VCredential management platform for easy management.”  Note: This can also be achieved in any of the Vanderbilt access control systems, or third-party systems, through the integration of RESTful APIs.  Customer-first Wilks further weighs in on why the company is expanding its reach into the Bluetooth credential field. “Customer-first is one of our most important mantras at ACRE. Forward-thinking and high-performance are two others that we really care about as well. The VCredential management platform hits all of these criteria out of the park,” Wilks states. “Why we feel so strongly about this market approach is because by introducing Bluetooth readers into existing systems, it reduces the total cost of ownership. This is because it extends the life of the existing system controller and hardware, allowing a smooth migration to mobile credentials. This benefits everyone.” “Furthermore, Bluetooth introduces a new level of end-user convenience. By removing the need for a physical credential, and introducing Bluetooth-enabled smartphones as a mobile credential, it provides end-users with a seamlessly smooth user experience,” says Wilks. No hidden costs Importantly, the VCredential is supporting the same perpetual license model as currently offered under ACT Enterprise. There are no hidden costs as the price per credential is paid up-front and does not reoccur on a monthly or yearly basis thereinafter. In addition, Vanderbilt is not asking for an annual maintenance fee and covers upgrades and support of this service free-of-charge. “For existing users of BLE readers with our ACT Enterprise,” Wilks concludes, “The approach here is the same and is based on convenience and simplicity. It mimics the same approach as the ACT Enterprise software interface. The only difference is that the credential management instead takes place through the VCredential platform.”

Vanderbilt Integrates ACT365 With Mobile BankID To Enhance Supermarket Security At ICA Sweden
Vanderbilt Integrates ACT365 With Mobile BankID To Enhance Supermarket Security At ICA Sweden

Installation company Nessence recently integrated Vanderbilt’s ACT365 cloud-based access control and video management system with Mobile BankID in Sweden. Mobile BankID is a citizen identification solution that allows companies, banks, and government agencies to authenticate and conclude agreements with individuals over the internet. The integration with ACT365 comes together to solve a brief put forward by the supermarket chain, ICA Sweden. Web API for integration Tobias Olofsson, Project Sales Manager at Vanderbilt, explains that ICA Sweden is a retailer with a focus on food and health, and they wanted to be open earlier in the morning and later in the evening. “It would be too expensive to hire staff to stay open during these times in smaller locations. This is because the number of customers shopping early in the morning or late at night is minimal. But the store wants to be able to provide its customers with this value-added service,” says Olofsson. ACT365 was the perfect solution for this project due to its easy deployment, easy operation To solve this, the supermarket wanted to open unmanned and needed a solution to allow customers to enter the store in a functioning and approved manner by the insurance company. In Olofsson’s opinion, ACT365 was the perfect solution for this project due to its easy deployment, easy operation, and a smooth web API for integration. Increased accessibility and convenience “The success of this project means it is now possible for shoppers to open the supermarket’s entrance door by digitally signing into the Mobile BankID on their phone and presenting it to the ACT365 reader located on the outside of the door,” states Olofsson. Moreover, good accessibility is maintained as all customers do not need to have specific cards or tags for the access system to be able to enter the supermarket. “A new modern solution has been developed to facilitate trade for private individuals, especially in smaller towns where food stores do not tend to stay open for as long as in the big cities. This project has resulted in increased profits for the supermarket, as well as increased accessibility and convenience for its customers,” concludes Olofsson.

Vanderbilt Announces On-Demand Webinar On Access Control System Strategies For Businesses To Reopen Safely
Vanderbilt Announces On-Demand Webinar On Access Control System Strategies For Businesses To Reopen Safely

As places of work start actively planning to safely open, Vanderbilt are providing customers with smart and reliable strategies to help create a safer environment for staff and visitors. Topics include: Creating social distancing solutions to allocate time slots and to ease people traffic flows Reducing transmission among employees by creating contact tracing reports on one’s access control system Maintaining healthy business operations by using one’s access control system to run a cleaning rota report Ensuring a healthy work culture by implementing temperature and facial mask detection By attending this webinar, one can also download the exclusive 'How your Access Control system can help you re-adjust your business to re-open, and STAY open' whitepaper.