The last day of Global Security Exchange (GSX) in Las Vegas proved to be the calm after the storm. But a slower third day could not undermine a largely successful 2018 show for exhibitors and attendees. Sometimes the success of a trade show isn’t measured by numbers of attendees (which were reportedly down again this year). Sometimes it’s the individual successes that make an impression. “Just learning about this made the whole trip worthwhile,” said one GSX attendee at the Johnson Controls booth, referring to the company’s new PowerSeries Pro intrusion devices. It’s the kind of feedback that makes the expense of exhibiting at a big trade show worthwhile. The new PowerSeries Pro is an extension of Johnson Controls’ existing line that is expressly designed for the commercial security market. The ‘hybrid’ (wired or wireless) device offers ease of installation and full cybersecurity including 128bit AES encryption with spread spectrum for no jamming or interference. It employs frequency hopping technology first developed for the Israeli defense force. Wireless Technology For Cybersecurity PowerG eliminates the need for wires by providing ‘invisible wired technology’, a marketing term that emphasises the cybersecurity of the product PowerSeries Pro uses PowerG wireless technology and expands the portfolio of PowerG devices from residential through commercial. For use in a wired solution, the main advantage is ease of installation; terminal blocks ‘pop out’ easily and can be wired and plugged back in. Alternatively, PowerG eliminates the need for wires by providing ‘invisible wired technology’, a marketing term that emphasises the cybersecurity of the product – wireless at the same level of cybersecurity as wired. Johnson Controls addresses three big factors with the product line: cybersecurity, user control, and easy installation and dependability. It’s part of Johnson Controls’ broader approach to provide ‘one-stop shopping’, enabling an end user to control their environments, video and access, and protect their contents, according to the company. Need For More Security In K-12 Schools In addition to reaching end users, lock company Allegion sees the show as an opportunity to meet with technology partners. “It’s great to bring together a concentration of people in the industry,” said Brad Aikin, Channel Led Business Leader, Integrator Channel. “We have had good conversations with technology companies here at the show in terms of partnering, both physical access control and OEM partners. We have also had good conversations with the integrator channel.” From speaking with education end users at GSX, Aikin sees a large unmet need for security in K-12 schools, more so than in colleges and universities. “K-12 is underserved,” he says. “They need to identify their priority of needs, and now they can serve needs they couldn’t before, both layering levels of security and phasing in implementation over time. Now things can be applied and tried out without disrupting the environment.” An example is the Von Duprin RU RM (Remote Undogging and Remote Monitoring) door exit devices, which are being integrated by access control partners Sielox, IDenticard and Vanderbilt. Intelligence is added to the door exit device to enable inexpensive monitoring of secondary, previously unconnected doors. The doors can be monitored and locked or unlocked at various points in the day. Lock company Allegion sees the show as an opportunity to meet with technology partners Bridging The Gap Between IT And Physical Security One exhibitor – ADT – noticed more information technology (IT) professionals accompanying their physical security counterparts at this year’s GSX exhibition. “They come along to kill dreams on the spot,” said Morgan Harris, Senior Director Enterprise Solutions, noting the IT department’s frequent hesitancy to add untrustworthy elements to the network. ADT is looking to transform and expand its 144-year-old brand in the commercial security space and has completed eight acquisitions in the last year to accomplish the goal. Some of the acquisitions build on ADT’s expanding cybersecurity initiative, which is both a fully-functioning stand-alone business and an effort to bridge the divide between IT and physical security. ADT is positioning itself to manage enterprise risk in the broadest sense. Combining IT And Cybersecurity The Internet of Things (IoT) is fuelling convergence but are we missing out on how to talk to each other and communicate effectively between IT and security?" “The Internet of Things (IoT) is fueling convergence but are we missing out on how to talk to each other and communicate effectively between IT and security?” asked Harris. “Projects have failed because information was lost in translation.” ADT seeks to have skillsets, experience and certifications on both sides of the issue. “It enables us to be the in-between,” says Harris. “We can blend the two together and be the translator. It’s great for both sides, advocating for security counterparts and for the network simplifies deployment and processes.” Harris sees a trade-off between cybersecurity and convenience in the industry. For example, if a manufacturer says they have a simplified process and only offers firmware updates once a year, cybersecurity suffers, he said. Lack of third-party testing is another way that manufacturers sometimes trade cybersecurity for convenience, at heightened risk to integrators and end users. Training Courses For Integrators And Partners Milestone Systems is expanding its level of involvement with integrator partners, and now provides Partner Business Reviews (PBR) to assess an integrator’s activities, sales and training, pipeline and marketing initiatives. The partner reviews often uncover issues that can be easily rectified through additional training, says Megan McHugh, Milestone’s Training Marketing Manager, Learning and Performance. Milestone uses a dashboard to track each integrator’s completed training courses and can point out additional courses needed to ensure an integrator partner’s success. Milestone offers a variety of in-person, e-learning and YouTube video courses to train installing partners, systems integrators and self-integrators on best practices Milestone offers a variety of in-person, e-learning and YouTube video courses (in 12 different languages) to train installing partners, systems integrators and self-integrators on best practices. ‘Cloud Labs’ are instructor-led online classes. All courses are linked to a variety of support resources. Sometimes a simple checklist accessed on a smart phone can ensure that every aspect of an install is performed and can instill added confidence in customers. The open platform company’s new agile development cycle – releasing multiple versions of XProtect software throughout the year – creates extra challenges to keep learning initiatives up to date. Along with each new release, various existing courses are updated. The concepts of “training and certification” are being replaced at Milestone with “learning and performance,” says McHugh. Milestone is also looking to hire 170 new R&D staff and open a new center in Barcelona (in addition to current R&D centers in Copenhagen and Sofia, Bulgaria). Making Camera Installation Easy Hanwha Techwin is another company that is seeing more interest in cybersecurity, as well as concern about whether a product is supported professionally. They have doubled-up production in South Korea and added capacity in Vietnam to avoid manufacturing in China. Thinking about their integrators, Hanwha Techwin is putting more emphasis on making installation easy. Installation costs may be up to 50 percent of a job, so easier installation frees up money to buy more or better cameras. With a new design of their cameras, an electrical contractor can now install the camera base and conduit, and then the integrator can easily plug in the camera later. Camera bases are common across multiple models, so a customer could switch out a 5-megapixel for a 2-megapixel camera later on if they want to (same housing plate). ‘Skins’ allow the color of cameras to be changed to match surrounding décor. “We are changing the idea of how people approach selling a camera, and it’s a whole new idea of how to install cameras,” said Tom Cook, Senior Vice President, North American Sales, Hanwha Techwin. Hanwha cameras can include a sound classification analytic to detect sounds such as gunshots Cameras With Sound Detection Technology Hanwha offers more flexibility in the field – interchangeable parts are packed together to enable configuration on site. And there is no need to stand on a ladder to position cameras; stepper motors help with remote camera positioning. Multi-sensor cameras have modules (combining lenses and sensors) that can be switched out at installation. Hanwha Techwin cameras can also include a sound classification analytic to detect sounds such as gunshots, screams or glass breaks, especially useful in K-12 education environments. Unification and the customer journey were a key emphasis for Genetec at GSX 2018. Unification for Genetec means combining multiple functions on one platform, from one vendor and using one source code. The company approaches the market by analyzing each customer’s journey as it relates to Genetec products. A typical customer journey involves (1) a company looking for standalone systems; (2) the need to centralize systems through integration and unification; (3) increasing automation and workflow; and (4) adding intelligence for more informed decision-making. “Genetec wants to get more in-depth with customers, be more comfortable with their business, and understand their challenges,” said Derek Arcuri, Product Marketing Manager. “We want to get naked with our customers.” Machine Learning Engine For Crime Prevention In the city of Chicago, Citigraf detects patterns in crime behavior and determines where a crime is likely to occur There was a big crowd at the Genetec booth, and not because the comment was applied literally. Genetec has divided itself into multiple parts, each focused on a vertical market such as retail or transportation. The approach is to operate as a ‘federation of startups’, with each market sector accountable to fill in the gaps in the portfolio to meet the specific needs of each vertical. For example, Genetec’s Citigraf is an unsupervised machine learning engine with an algorithm to detect anomalies and trends from a large pool of data in a municipal environment. In the city of Chicago, Citigraf detects patterns in crime behavior and determines where a crime is likely to occur. The system alerts operators in a bureau or area that has a higher risk level and should beef up the number of first responders. Chicago has seen a 39 percent decrease in average response time of first responders as a result. In the retail market, Genetec leverages the security infrastructure to analyze shopping trends and provide data for merchandising and operations. “Each customer is getting a portfolio of products tailored to the industry they are in,” says Arcuri. Demonstrating IoT Devices Axis Communications displayed its range of products at GSX, demonstrating its almost total transformation from an IP camera company to a supplier of a full range of Internet of Things (IoT) devices. “Axis is broadening its portfolio to include more solutions,” said Scott Dunn, Senior Director, Business Development Systems and Solutions. “Our success is driven by continuing to innovate our portfolio. The market is continuing to grow, and Axis is continuing to expand its market share.” Eight ‘Axis Customer Experience Centers’ around the United States help Axis stay close to their integrators, customers, partners and prospects. IP addressable audio speakers from Axis can provide music as a service, and then can be interrupted for audio messages on behalf of physical security Axis has offered access control IP edge devices since 2013, and now has a new A1601 door controller being sold with partner-only software (no embedded Axis software like previous A1001 devices). In audio products, Axis has a portfolio of speakers, intercoms, and public address systems. Acquisition Of IP Door Intercom Company Enhancing the audio line was acquisition in 2016 of 2N, an IP door intercom company headquartered in Prague, Czech Republic. In North America, the 2N team is now fully part of Axis. The line emphasises simple architecture, programmability, and the ability to integrate widely. The products use Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) to integrate through the cloud or peer-to-peer. IP addressable audio speakers from Axis can provide music as a service, and then can be interrupted for audio messages on behalf of physical security. Retail, education and enterprise customers are gravitating to IP audio. An IP bridge can tie existing analog components into the IP system. For perimeter security, Axis offers a radar device to help eliminate false alarms, as well as thermal cameras.
End users at ASIS 2017 in Dallas may feel overwhelmed by all the new technology on display, but often their integrator partners can offer a helping hand. Traffic continued through much of Day 2 of the ASIS exhibition, but the foot traffic appeared to slow considerably as the day wore on. Convergint Seeks Closer Manufacturer Relationship Integrators are prominent at ASIS and play an important role connecting end user customers with manufacturers' products that meet their need. "We are taking them by the hand and introducing them to our [manufacturer] partners and to the solutions," said Tony Varco, Vice President Security Division, Convergint Technologies. Convergint has a global presence and is one of several large integrators with booths at ASIS. "We want a closer relationship with the manufacturers we work with," Varco said. Previously manufacturers may have preferred to keep their distance from end users, but not anymore. "They want us to facilitate the relationship between manufacturers and customers at a very high level," says Varco. In addition to their booth presence, Convergint personnel are escorting their big clients through the exhibit hall, one-on-one, to view the latest products. "It's not about whiz-bang technology, but about the technology that can produce business results. We may spend half a day or several days, depending on the client. We map it out ahead of time, and talk with them weeks ahead about their objectives. They may not be looking to make an immediate investment, but more looking ahead three to five years: These are the things you need to start thinking about." Digitising Building Systems "It's not about whiz-bang technology, but about the technology that can produce business results" Varco sees a trend in the market to digitise more building systems, including power-over-Ethernet lighting (using low-voltage LEDs), occupancy sensors, HVAC, fire alarms/life safety and physical security. These technologies are being combined in the "digital ceiling," which refers literally to the space above the ceiling tiles of a building and the network and cabling infrastructure that accommodates all the digitised operations for various functions. As a large-scale integrator, Varco points to managing customer expectations as a challenge, both at ASIS and in general. "What the customer expects and what's being sold to them may be two different things," he said. "When solving problems and creating business outcomes, you have to control expectations so they understand what they're getting, and what they're not getting. If the customer doesn't believe they got what they were sold, it causes problems." ADT And Cybersecurity Cybersecurity continues to be top-of-mind, both among attendees and exhibitors. Protection 1 (now ADT) is a company that has been talking about cybersecurity and other networking issues for several years now, dating back to before it was such as "hot" topic. "It's irresponsible to just provide physical security without addressing what that entails in your cyber environment," said Morgan Harris, ADT's Senior Director of Enterprise Solutions. Ironically, security systems are often the cause of vulnerabilities on a network, and ADT's cybersecurity and network management approach seeks to minimize the vulnerabilities. Avigilon Blue is a subscription-based cloud service that enables integrators to manage more sites with fewer resources ADT's network operations center offers health management, network services and cybersecurity to business customers. Services that previously targeted national commercial accounts are now being brought downmarket to help smaller commercial customers, which can be even more vulnerable to cyber-attack. Meeting Cybersecurity Challenges The entire market -- manufacturers, integrators and end users -- all have a stake in meeting cybersecurity challenges, according to Harris. "Everyone has ownership in it," he said. "It starts with the products, but cybersecurity also has to be considered during installation, operation and maintenance." "We try to be out on the edge looking at vulnerabilities," Harris said. "If you are using our managed video recorders, we can push a patch out to the devices fairly quickly." He provided an example of a recent deployment of video systems at a national grocery store chain – more than 300 locations installed over 90 days. A couple of weeks into the deployment, a Windows vulnerability was discovered related to the NVR. Because ADT had a remediation plan in place, they were agile enough to solve the vulnerability problem and continue to deploy on schedule. Leveraging Protection 1's historically successful approach to customerservice has benefited both customers and employees Bringing back national commercial accounts to ADT (which gave up the business in a non-compete provision when the company separated from Tyco) is just one of the benefits of combining Protection 1 and ADT, which will use the more familiar ADT brand going forward. New national account business has also been added by recent acquisitions. Cloud Service Platforms For Video Since the merger with Protection 1, ADT has been working to up its game by improving customer service, drastically lowering customer wait times, and replacing automated audio recordings with live people. Leveraging Protection 1's historically successful approach to customer service has benefited both customers and employees, who don't have to deal with as many angry and frustrated customers. Therefore, employee turnover is going down. "We are proud of the results we are seeing," said Bob Tucker, ADT Director, Corporate Affairs. Cloud services are another hot topic at ASIS 2017, and Avigilon is the latest company to introduce a cloud service platform for video. Avigilon Blue is a subscription-based cloud service that enables integrators to manage more sites with fewer resources, and to add recurring monthly revenue (RMR) based on site subscriptions. A twist is use of "self-monitoring”, in effect, self-learning video analytics, to provide alarm notifications to bring attention to events as triggered by analytics. The customer can also view live and/or archived video through a browser. The system is powered by Microsoft Azure.
Protection 1, a division of ADT, will feature advanced managed and monitored network security and location analytics capabilities such as foot traffic, heat mapping, dwell time and new vs. repeat customer visit using Cisco Meraki Access Points (AP) at NRF Protect. To streamline deployment and help enhance network security, Protection 1 offers fully managed services from its Network Operations Center (NOC). Its engineers are Cisco and Meraki certified and can help design, implement, commission, manage and monitor a retailer’s networks. Protection 1 Network Managed Services can help insure your networks will operate as expected, are continually monitored, software is updated and bandwidth is managed. They have been shown to help reduce costs associated with travel expenses related to on-site visits, improve business processes and help mitigate network security risks. Unified Wireless Network Management Cisco Meraki Access Points provide powerful and intuitive multi-site management of networks via the cloud and eliminate the cost and complexity of traditional on-site wireless controllers. They also provide an end-to-end solution that unifies WAN, LAN, wireless LAN and mobile device management through one common user interface. Meraki APs offer a secure WIFI with guest access, are PCI Compliant with associated reporting and offer multi-site cloud management with centralized control across all store networks from a web-based dashboard. Whether used to deploy single or multi-site networks or as stand-alone appliances, Meraki APs also provide integrated Bluetooth Beacons, streamlined guest access and rich location analytics for unmatched opportunity for customer engagement. "The value of the solution extends beyond security and may help improve marketing programs and customer engagement." Enhanced Customer Engagement Cisco Meraki Location Analytics display real-time location statistics to help improve customer engagement and are built-in to Cisco Meraki APs with no addition cost or complexity. Data collected by APs is synced with the Cisco Meraki cloud and automatically reported in a dashboard, providing visitor traffic trends, dwell time and new vs. repeat visitor loyalty. The devices can even offer insight on the number of customers who actual visit the store vs. just simply passing by based on dwell time algorithms. The reports can be customized to compare sites, effectiveness of campaigns or analyze trends by day, week or even over a month. The data is collected when the APs detect a unique WIFI Mac address whether the customer is connected to the guest WIFI or not. “Retailers deploying Meraki Access Points have the ability to improve network security with the added benefits that can be derived from the Location Analytics, at no additional costs,” states Morgan Harris, Senior Director of Enterprise Solutions for Protection 1/ADT. “The value of the solution extends beyond security and may help improve marketing programs and customer engagement.” Visit Protection 1’s booth #1013 at NRF Protect June 27-28, 2017 at the Gaylord National Harbor Resort and Convention Center in Washington, DC to learn more about how Protection 1 can help provide a secure network environment and advanced analytics as well.