Eagle Eye Networks, the pioneer in cloud video surveillance, has raised $40 million of Series E funding from venture capital firm Accel to continue its growth and expand its technology leadership. Eagle Eye is leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) on its true cloud platform to dramatically reshape video surveillance and improve safety, security, operations, and customer service for businesses around the world. Video surveillance systems have multiple security features, such as motion detectio...
Blind spots in surveillance coverage, incompatible video and access control systems, lack of adequate perimeter measures are some of the common issues that facility directors must address with their security teams. At the end of the day, facility executives need technology that accomplish more with less and that expand situational awareness, overall system functionality, and real-time response capabilities, while generating cost savings. By leveraging technology like thermal imaging, this is pos...
Vision-Box a global provider of biometrics seamless travel, automated border management and electronic identity management solutions dedicated to improving the quality and security in government services, travel and border control - announced a regional strategic partnership with AirAsia Group, to implement pioneering, identity management technology across its network of 152 airports. As a provider and pioneer of new seamless digital identification technologies throughout the travel ecosystem,...
Construction site theft can cause project delays, property damage and loss of profit for companies in the construction sector. It is imperative to deter thieves from targeting construction sites with the help of construction site security. Here, we look into the various security options and how they can help protect your firm from the threat of a break-in. Construction theft has soared during the COVID-19 Pandemic Construction site theft is an ever-increasing problem in the UK, costing the ind...
Video storage has been a challenge since the days of VCRs and videotape. Storing images is a central need for any video systems, especially one that is focused on the forensic and investigative aspects of video. Today, digital video is stored on hard drives and even in the cloud. Increasingly, video is considered “data” that drives a variety of video analytics and even artificial intelligence (AI) applications. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the new tren...
GRAU DATA has announced the general availability of Blocky for Veeam, which protects Veeam backups by denying any file access from unauthorized application processes, amid heightened demand for protection from increasingly sophisticated malware attacks. More sophisticated and targeted malware attacks combined with work from home as a new normal, has opened a vulnerability when it comes to IT security, particularly within midmarket companies. Whereas in the past, businesses could count on restor...
Boon Edam Inc., a global renowned supplier in security entrances and architectural revolving doors, has published a new whitepaper for architects and security professionals entitled, ‘The New Lobby: How Will Securing Buildings Change in a Post-Pandemic World?’ Physical security plan The publication begins by explaining the importance of creating a physical security plan that addresses and controls unauthorized entry due to tailgating, and continues with discussions around how COVID-19 has impacted building design, forcing facility owners and designers to provide touchless entry and social distancing while upholding building security. Controlling access in the ‘New Lobby’ As a prerequisite to the effects of a pandemic on building entrances and design, the whitepaper begins by reinforcing the physical security concepts of controlling access and mitigating unauthorized entry to address risk and liability. By understanding what it takes to effectively control access to a building through three critical inputs (people, process and technology), architects and end users can explore changes in design and function while upholding the need for security at all times. Lobby design changes for a post-pandemic world A second requirement of the ‘New Lobby’ design is to support and reinforce distance by design The publication then asks designers to rethink the role of the lobby, which has historically been a ‘catch all’ for processing a variety of building visitors and occupants. Designers must now consider creating separate entry and exit points throughout the building to support social distancing. A second requirement of the ‘New Lobby’ design is to support and reinforce distance by design, such as rethinking office layouts, flexible on-site work schedules and increased telecommuting. Rethinking existing technologies in the ‘New Lobby’ Finally, the ‘New Lobby’ whitepaper covers some existing security and access technologies that are being looked at under a new lens due to the pandemic. The article touches on the positives and negatives of each type of technology and how they will impact the people and processes used to support them. ‘The New Lobby: How Will Securing Buildings Change in a Post-Pandemic World?’ is available at no charge on the Boon Edam website.
Globally renowned access control manufacturer, Inner Range is offering customers the ability to identify close contacts of anyone displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or other infectious diseases, by generating detailed reports of where the infected person has been and who else has been near them. Contact tracing The contact tracing report can be generated and shared quickly and easily. It can show which doors an infected user has passed through, how much time they spent in each area, what time they badged a reader and which other users were near them, up to 15 minutes before the infected person arrived and 60 minutes after they left the area. Furthermore, the report is completely customizable and multiple variations can be saved to ensure operators have what they need for a range of requirements. Inner Range General Manager, Tim Northwood, said “Organizations around the globe are struggling with the challenges raised by the COVID-19 global pandemic. One way in which Inner Range can help address some of these issues is by assisting organizations to design safer work environments for their staff and customers.” He adds, “The company also aims to provide a robust contract tracing report will help organizations quickly identify users who could be at risk and interrupt the spread of infection.” Integriti integrated access control system The contact trace report is available via Inner Range’s intelligent integrated access control and security system, Integriti, for customers using Integriti Business and Integriti Corporate software editions. The reports can be generated and displayed directly within Integriti and displayed on the operator’s screen in a user-friendly format. The report can be saved in PDF, Excel, CSV, Text, Image or RTF formats along with more advanced options such as generating HTML, or creating everything needed for a MHL single page website. Specific access permissions and area counting features Inner Range access systems can provide specific access permissions for each area of a building In addition, Inner Range access systems can provide specific access permissions for each area of a building and include area counting to monitor and limit the number of users in a particular area. This is available for Enterprise-level Integriti as well as Inner Range’s Entry-level system, Inception. Occupancy thresholds can be set for a whole building, specific area, individual offices or rooms, car parks and lifts. Once the level is reached further users’ permissions are suspended until the occupancy count has a spare space. Real-time monitoring and alerts All information about occupancy can be transmitted to the site health and safety manager for real-time monitoring and alerts. A report can be run at any time to confirm the occupancy status of any designated area. Inner Range is a globally renowned company in the design and manufacture of intelligent security solutions, since it was established in 1988. More than 150,000 Inner Range systems have been installed in over 30 countries. Customers include hospitals and high-security units, colleges, distribution centers, pharmaceutical companies, government and critical national infrastructure.
Most business today is conducted at the edge, with employees working from home on vulnerable, often personal, endpoint devices. As the amount of sensitive corporate data accessed by devices out of an organization’s control grows, so does the attack surface that the IT team must safeguard. In response to this complex reality, Acronis announced the development of an integrated solution for managed service providers (MSPs) designed to enhance the protection of their clients’ Citrix Workspace assets, no matter where they sit. Citrix is driven to deliver a consistent work experience, free from complexity and distractions, that enables employees to perform at their best. Intelligent digital workspace And solutions like Citrix Workspace - the secure, intelligent, and high-performing digital workspace that enables greater employee productivity and engagement - have become critical, as two-thirds of all employees have reportedly switched to remote work in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The challenge for organizations is countering the dramatic increase in sophisticated cyberattacks The challenge for organizations is countering the dramatic increase in sophisticated cyberattacks targeting remote workers whose home systems and networks are rarely as resilient as office environments. Compounding that challenge: New research reveals 47% of remote workers worldwide report a lack of guidance from their IT teams on working remotely. That combination leaves them vulnerable to attacks that not only hurt their productivity, but also put valuable company data and systems at risk. Cybersecurity capabilities “Providing a consistent experience that is secure and reliable for employees, regardless of where they are working, is critical to keeping them engaged and productive,” said PJ Hough, EVP, Chief Product Officer, Citrix. “Through Acronis’ integration with Citrix, companies can provide comprehensive cyber protection that enriches the security of virtual apps and desktop users without getting in the way of their experience, and ensure their assets and data are protected now and into the future.” The integration of Acronis Cyber Protect with Citrix Workspace, made possible through the APIs and SDKs of the Acronis Cyber Platform, adds advanced cybersecurity capabilities that enhance Citrix’s existing privacy and security measures. Comprehensive cyber protection As a result, the VB100 certified antimalware solution secures endpoints with real-time protection that uses AI-based static and behavioral heuristic, on-demand antivirus, antiransomware, and anticryptojacking technologies to prevent direct attacks against the Citrix Workspace app. Given the increased sophistication of modern cyberthreats, any access point can be vulnerable to malware attacks that can destroy or alter files and inject malicious code. Without adequate cyber protection, a successful attack on a virtual desktop can put the entire environment at risk Without adequate cyber protection, a successful attack on a virtual desktop can put the entire environment at risk. Once the first client machine is compromised, the infection can move laterally across the network, encrypting data on other machines and leaving the target company open to devastating downtime and lost revenue. Comprehensive cyber protection unites data protection and advanced cybersecurity in one solution, which delivers a proven defense against such modern threats. Advanced antimalware technology Developers and independent software vendors (ISVs) can enhance their solutions using the APIs and SDKs of the Acronis Cyber Platform. By integrating with Citrix, Acronis Cyber Protect delivers a cohesive and cost-effective solution that enables MSPs to protect virtual desktop environments from direct attacks. Its advanced antimalware technology uses kernel-level drivers to protect files and registry entries from modification, while preventing the injection of malicious code. This integration is the first of several capabilities Acronis has planned to support Citrix solutions, with four additional enhancements being planned for early 2021. Among the features MSPs will soon see available are: Agentless Antimalware Protection for Virtual Machines: Other agent-based antimalware protection tools on the market require their technology to run inside each virtual machine in the environment, resulting in both greater complexity and consumption of resources. Acronis plans to integrate Acronis Cyber Protect directly with Citrix’s virtual apps and desktops solutions, which will reduce complexity and cost while streamlining resource consumption. Antimalware Protection for User Profiles: As the frequency and effectiveness of ransomware attacks increase, 50% of companies worldwide report experiencing cyberattacks at least once a week. Countering those attacks requires a proven solution, and testing by independent cybersecurity labs such as AV-Test and Virus Bulletin shows that Acronis Cyber Protect’s antimalware detects 100% of the latest malware attacks with zero false positives. Agentless Backup for Citrix Hypervisor: Most backup tools run a full-size agent inside each virtual machine, increasing the complexity of the overall system, as well as the resource consumption on the virtualization host. Acronis’ agentless backups for Citrix’s virtualized environments provides a more efficient way to capture backups by decreasing RAM/CPU consumption up to 10-times -significantly reducing the time it takes to manage multiple backup agents per virtual machine. Continuous Data Protection for User Profiles: Throughout the workday, employees can make unintended changes to their data, such as accidentally deleting important files. This kind of data loss not only affects the individual user’s productivity, the entire business can suffer as a result. Using continuous data protection technology, the Acronis Cyber Protect agent tracks and backs up every change in user files. Its intuitive interface enables a user to revert files to the latest point in time in a transparent manner, ensuring employees and businesses stay productive. Integrating cyber protection “In this day and age, the need to bring user-friendly, comprehensive cyber protection to virtual desktop environments is more critical than ever,” said Serguei “SB” Beloussov, Founder and CEO of Acronis. “Working with partners like Citrix to develop and deploy integrated technologies is the key to ensuring businesses can survive and thrive in the COVID-19 era - and well beyond.” To learn more about the benefits of deploying Acronis Cyber Protect with Citrix Workspace, readers may visit the company’s official website. MSPs interested in strengthening the security of their Citrix Workspace client can try Acronis Cyber Protect for themselves with a 30-day trial. Any developer or ISV interested in integrating cyber protection into their solutions can learn more about the Acronis Cyber Platform on Acronis’s official website.
Orange Cyberdefense, the cyber security business unit of the Orange Group, has boosted its UK executive team with the appointment of executive for three senior roles, including new Managing Director, Clive Hamilton. Global ICT experience Clive joins Orange Cyberdefense having spent more than 13 years at NTT Europe (NTT Ltd.), most recently as Managing Director. He has 30 years global ICT experience in network, cloud, data center, security and voice service. Mohammed Lateef has joined as UK Finance Director for the organization. Mohammed has extensive experience within financial management roles, having worked as the Head of Finance and Operations for Xenith and prior to that, Group Financial Controller of Six Degrees Group. This experience has enabled him to harness a vital skill set across accounting, finance, auditing and management. Cyber security and technology solutions expert In 2019, Orange acquired the UK’s largest independent cyber security provider, SecureData New UK Product and Marketing Director, Stuart Reed, has broad experience in the cyber security and technology industry, including with Sony, Symantec and NTT Security. With expertise in product marketing, product management and strategy, Stuart is in a strong position to drive marketing management and strategy. Orange Cyberdefense employs more than 200 people in the UK. In 2019, Orange acquired the UK’s largest independent cyber security provider, SecureData, whose existing Security Operations Center (SOC) was added to Orange Cyberdefense’s existing nine Cyber SOC’s and four CERTs around the globe. The acquisition included SecureData’s penetration testing and consulting arm, SensePost. Services-led approach to cyber security Clive Hamilton, UK Managing Director, Orange Cyberdefense UK, stated “COVID-19 has cemented the market direction towards a services led approach to cyber security. With an increasingly dispersed workforce and global economy, customers are demanding to work with a cyber-security partner that can build a solution to meet their business models that are increasingly reliant on digitization.” Clive adds, “With a blended approach of people, process and technology, coupled with the growth of the UK team plus the backing of a multinational organization, Orange Cyberdefense has the skills, experience and focus to work in partnership with customers to drive their commercial success in a scalable and secure way by placing cyber security at the heart of their digital transformation initiatives.”
Paxton’s Installer app has officially gone live. The tool has been designed as a centralized platform giving installers and system administrators instant access to key information they need to install and manage Paxton products and solutions on the go. 2020 has been a productive year for the people of Paxton, despite the on-going consequences of the global pandemic. Regulatory guidelines and social distancing measures have led to essential and innovative updates for Paxton’s long-standing access control system Net2. Provides digital access Paxton’s Chief Executive Adam Stroud explains: “There are certain things, such as this pandemic, that happen outside of our direct control and where possible, I think it’s important to try to see the opportunity to do something fresh and different.” Along with rolling out these important feature updates, Paxton added their new Paxton Installer app to their 2020 agenda. The simple-to-use pocket tool provides digital access to Paxton’s Knowledge Base. Installers how have convenient access to up-to-date product specifications, technical documents, video installer instructions as well as answers to many FAQs right on their cellphone device. Expert technical support team Paxton has designed the app’s search functionality with a seamless experience in mind Adam said: “At Paxton we are always looking for opportunities to improve the service and information we provide to our valued installers and their customers. Saving them time and making their working lives more convenient is why we have invested in developing the new Paxton Installer app”. To make life simple on site for their installers, Paxton has designed the app’s search functionality with a seamless experience in mind. Individual product information can be accessed within seconds via the app’s built in bar code scanner. Installers will also be able to direct dial Paxton’s expert technical support team and find a list of their local distributors to make sourcing products and getting installation advice quick and easy. Products and solutions Adam continues: “We have an ever-growing library of content about our products and solutions. Finding the right information when you need it can often be a challenge. Making this easier for our installers has been one of the key objectives of the new app. You will be able to simply scan or search for your product, and all the information is right there for you. In addition, the app gives you immediate access to our vast knowledge base that is used by our own customer support team”. Another benefit of the app for installers is the ability to favorite link documents for quick access and share information with co-workers or end users via email, text, Airdrop, or WhatsApp. All documents and videos are also available offline as they are downloadable within the app. This makes it possible to access information when internet access is a problem. Efficient for installers Adam concludes, “I am very pleased we have invested in the development of this app to make things simpler and efficient for installers. Watch this space as we have much more planned for it in the future!”. The app is available to download now on iOS and Android smart-devices. One can also check out the Paxton Installer app video that explains how installers can use the app’s functionally and how they can get the most out of the innovation.
Check Point Research, the Threat Intelligence arm of Check Point Software Technologies Ltd., a renowned provider of cybersecurity solutions globally, has published its new Brand Phishing Report for Q3 2020. The report highlights the brands which were most frequently imitated by criminals in their attempts to steal individuals’ personal information or payment credentials during July, August and September. In Q3, Microsoft was the brand most frequently targeted brand by cybercriminals, soaring from fifth place (relating to 7% of all brand phishing attempted globally in Q2 of 2020) to the top of the ranking. 19% of all brand phishing attempts related to the technology giant, as threat actors sought to capitalize on large numbers of employees still working remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic. Remote working technology In this past quarter, we saw the highest increase in email phishing attacks of all platforms compared to Q2" For the first time in 2020, DHL entered the top 10 rankings, taking the second spot with 9% of all phishing attempts related to the company. The most likely industry to be targeted by brand phishing was technology, followed by banking and then social network. This illustrates a broad spread of some of the best-known and most used consumer sectors, particularly during the coronavirus pandemic, whereby individuals are grappling with remote working technology, potential changes to finances, and an increased use of social media. Email phishing attacks Maya Horowitz, Director, Threat Intelligence & Research, Products at Check Point said: “In this past quarter, we saw the highest increase in email phishing attacks of all platforms compared to Q2, with Microsoft being the most impersonated brand. This has been driven by threat actors taking advantage of the mass migration to remote working forced by the COVID-19 pandemic, to target employees with fake emails asking them to reset their Microsoft Office 365 credentials." "As always, we encourage users to be cautious when divulging personal data and credentials to business applications, and to think twice before opening email attachments or links, especially emails that claim to from companies, such as Microsoft or Google, who are most likely to be impersonated.” Fraudulent cellphone application The fake website often contains a form intended to steal users’ credentials, payment details or other personal information In a brand phishing attack, criminals try to imitate the official website of a well-known brand by using a similar domain name or URL and web-page design to the genuine site. The link to the fake website can be sent to targeted individuals by email or text message, a user can be redirected during web browsing, or it may be triggered from a fraudulent cellphone application. The fake website often contains a form intended to steal users’ credentials, payment details or other personal information. The top brands are ranked by their overall appearance in brand phishing attempts: Microsoft (related to 19% of all brand phishing attempts globally) DHL (9%) Google (9%) PayPal (6%) Netflix (6%) Facebook (5%) Apple (5%) Whatsapp (5%) Amazon (4%) Instagram (4%) Top phishing brands by platform During Q3 2020, email phishing was the most prominent type of brand phishing platform, accounting for 44% of attacks, closely followed by web phishing, which was the second most attacked platform compared to Q2, where it ranked first. The top phishing brands exploited by email phishing attacks were Microsoft, DHL and Apple, in that order. Email (44% of all phishing attacks during Q3) Microsoft DHL Apple Web (43% of all phishing attacks during Q3) Microsoft Google PayPal Cellphone (12% of all phishing attacks during Q3) Whatsapp PayPal Facebook Enter billing information Example A: Microsoft Phishing Email Aims to Steal Credentials During mid-August, Check Point researchers witnessed a malicious phishing email trying to steal credentials of Microsoft accounts. The attacker was trying to lure the victim to click on a malicious link which redirects the user to a fraudulent Microsoft login page. Example B: Amazon Phishing Email Attempts Credential Information Theft During September, Check Point researchers noticed a malicious phishing email which was allegedly sent by Amazon and was trying to steal user’s credit information. The email said that the user’s account was disabled due to too many login failures and pointed the user to a fraudulent Amazon billing center website in which the user is instructed to enter billing information. Threat sensors Check Point’s Brand Phishing Report is powered by Check Point’s ThreatCloud intelligence, one of the largest collaborative networks to fight cybercrime which delivers threat data and attack trends from a global network of threat sensors. The ThreatCloud database holds over 250 million addresses analyzed for bot discovery, more than 11 million malware signatures and over 5.5 million infected websites and identifies millions of malware types daily.
Every building starts with the entrance. A solid enterprise risk mitigation and security strategy include protecting that entrance. Often, risk mitigation strategies protecting the entrance have included high-resolution video surveillance cameras, video management systems, and access control solutions. But that strategy and set of security solutions only tells part of the story. Imagine a security guard who is protecting a facility after hours, when an individual approaches the entrance and seeks to gain access. The security guard can pull up the video surveillance feed and see the individual and his movements, which appear to be suspicious. But he also needs to hear him in order to decide the next decisions and actions. Does he escalate the situation, calling for backup and for first responders’ response, or does he allow the individual access to the building because he works there and is authorized to enter? Meet high-definition voice What the security guard needs is to be able to hear and to communicate with that individual. All enterprise security systems need three primary components in order to successfully protect the entrance and to mitigate risk – access control, video surveillance, and the ability to hear and communicate. Each component plays an integral role in supporting a unified security system, and without all three, the security system is not complete. Access control can be thought of as the brains of a security system by holding data and permissions. It serves as the arms and hands of the system; it can either keep someone out or invite them in. IP video allows a security team to remotely position a set of eyes anywhere an IP camera can be placed on a network. With a video management system, security teams can see what is happening and decide how to respond. However, with remote viewing, the event may be over by the time security physically responds. Audio adds interactivity That three-component enterprise security system – comprising IP video, access control, and high-definition voice working together mitigates risks and provides value. It also means that security is interactive. Security teams talk and listen to the person that’s seen on a video surveillance system, no matter where the location or how remote. If the person is lost or simply needs assistance, security personnel can talk to them and provide direction and reassurance. Even more, in an emergency, an interactive solution becomes a critical life-saving tool, as it provides data that can be shared between security, police, emergency services, and more. Audio can also detect voices, noises, breaking glass, or other sounds that are not within direct view of a video camera. An interactive security system creates an informed response, by providing real-time situation awareness management. Post-event, it supports forensics and investigations to mitigate future security incidents. Audio and COVID-19 We are living in extraordinary times. As businesses begin to reopen and stay open, they are looking for any tools that can help them overcome the enormous challenges they face. In buildings and facilities, the COVID-19 pandemic has created a new security perimeter, one that demands contactless access with entry and exit, and that has also created a new duty of care for security professionals. Now more than ever is the need to interact and communicate with individuals moving in and out of doors and spaces without physical intervention. Intelligent communications, integrated with contactless access control, can help a business to comply with pandemic safety guidelines and ultimately, reopen for business and stay open. COVID-19 has also increased the need for clean-room isolation and quarantine spaces, sometimes in areas not originally intended for that use, where risk of infection is high, and equipment must be easily disinfected between patients. Here, purpose-built cleanroom intercoms, providing clear touchless communications despite the noisy environment, have emerged as critical tools for enabling patient care while reducing the need to enter the contaminated space. For example, voice communication can enable hospital staff to verify identity and to communicate with patients without entering the isolated and infectious environment, which can save on personal protective equipment (PPE) and reduce the amount of exposure to the virus. In non-emergency healthcare facilities, such as medical centers, voice can effectively relay information to building occupants and visitors for screening purposes. Visitors can be seen and heard. For example, a patient who seeks access to a medical center for an appointment can hear important instructions from a nurse via the intercom solution. Seeing the person that you talk to is one thing but hearing them conveys a much better sense of closeness, making it possible to maintain a high level of security and customer service. The whole story Today’s security systems should no longer simply involve video surveillance cameras generating feedback and images to a security guard. Instead, a new ecosystem for enterprise security and risk mitigation has emerged, and it’s one that involves video surveillance, access control, and high-definition voice. That ecosystem can ensure well-rounded and responsive information management and security platform, all communicating with each other and offering actionable insight into risks and potential physical breaches. Audio is the new value hub of the connected and intelligent school, campus, building, correctional facility, and more. Simply put, a silent security system cannot be an effective security system. In every situation, it is crucial for all security professionals to mitigate risk, no matter what they are protecting. This emphasizes the need to hear, be heard, and be understood in virtually any environment.
This year has been characterized by uncertainty and extraordinary strain, which has fallen heavily on all manner of key workers. Alongside our celebrated healthcare professionals, carers and the emergency services, those working in essential retail have proved themselves to be the backbone of our society during this challenging period. As people try to grasp onto normality and cope with the unexpected changes taking place in every aspect of their lives – including the way they are allowed to shop – it’s no surprise that tensions are now running higher than ever. Retail crime was already on the rise before the pandemic struck, with the British Retail Consortium finding that at least 424 violent or abusive incidents were reported every day last year. The Co-op recently reported its worst week in history in terms of abuse and antisocial behavior, with 990 incidents of antisocial behavior and verbal abuse suffered by staff between 20th and 26th July. 990 incidents of antisocial behavior and verbal abuse suffered by staff between 20th and 26th July To manage the increased risks currently faced by retail employees, businesses must adopt new initiatives to safeguard their staff. Growing numbers of retailers including the Co-op and Asda have equipped their in-store and delivery staff with body worn cameras to enhance safety and provide them with peace of mind, as well as to discourage altercations from taking place at all. Traditional tech Body worn cameras are nothing new and have been used within the law enforcement industry for years. Traditional devices are record-only and can be used to record video evidence able to be drawn upon ‘after the fact’ should it be needed as an objective view of an event and who was involved. These devices can also be used to discourage violent or verbally abusive incidents from occurring in the first place. If a customer is approached by an employee, they are likely to think twice about retaliating if they know their interaction is being recorded. This stance is supported by research from the University of Cambridge that found the use of body worn cameras improves the behavior of the wearer and those in its vicinity, as both are aware of the fact it can act as an objective ‘digital witness’ to the situation. However, record-only body worn cameras do leave much to be desired. In fact, the same University of Cambridge study found that, in the case of law enforcement, assaults against officers wearing these devices actually increased by 15%. This could be attributed to those being recorded being provoked by the presence of the camera or wanting to destroy any evidence it may hold. Out with the old, in with the new Live-streaming enabled body worn cameras provide the benefits of record-only devices and more Fortunately, there is a better option. Live-streaming enabled body worn cameras provide the benefits of record-only devices and more. Live-streaming capabilities are able to take ‘after the fact’ evidence one step further and provide the wearer with ‘in the moment’ safety and reassurance. With these devices, if a retail employee is subject to a volatile situation with a customer, they can trigger live video to be streamed back to a central command and control room where security officers will be able to take the most appropriate course of action with heightened and real-time situational awareness. Having access to all of the information they could need instantly will enable security personnel to decide whether to attend the scene and diffuse the situation themselves or to take more drastic action if needed, before any harm has been caused. This capability is especially valuable for lone workers who don’t have access to instant support – such as delivery drivers, in-store or warehouse staff and distribution operators to name a few. The pandemic has also doubled the number of consumers who do their regular grocery shopping online, leading to potential supply and demand issues resulting in unhappy customers. Live-streaming body worn cameras rely on uninterrupted mobile connectivity to excel, as they are not connected to any physical infrastructure. To minimize the risk of the live video stream buffering or freezing – a real possibility for delivery drivers who can be working anywhere in the country – retailers should look to deploy devices capable of streaming in real-time, with near zero latency footage, even when streaming over poor or constrained networks. To get the most out of their tech, retailers should also look to implement devices that can be multi-use and can be deployed as a body worn camera or a dashcam to record any incidents that may occur while driving. Novel threats This year brought about a new threat that retailers must protect their staff from While not to the same extent, retail workers have always been subject to a level of potential physical or verbal abuse. However, this year brought about a new threat that retailers must protect their staff from. The COVID-19 pandemic has been the cause of many of the new threats facing employees, but is also a threat in itself. To mitigate this, retailers should look to introduce remote elevated temperature detection cameras in their stores, which analyze body temperature and sound an alarm when somebody’s temperature exceeds a certain threshold – as this could indicate the presence of a potential fever. When deployed on the same cellular network as live-streaming enabled body cameras, these tools can be linked to a central command center and the alarms viewed remotely from any connected device. This means a network of cameras can be monitored efficiently from a single platform. Ensuring the protection and security of retail workers has come to the fore this year. With the risk of infection in high-footfall locations, such as supermarkets, and the added pressure that comes with monitoring and enforcing safety guidelines, retail staff are having to cope with a plethora of new challenges. Retailers should adopt innovative technologies within their stores and delivery trucks, such as live-streaming enabled body cameras and remote elevated temperature screening solutions, to minimize the threat faced by their employees and provide them with instant support and reassurance should it be required.
The threat landscape we operate in today is changing all the time. Around the world, pressures on law enforcement bodies remain incredibly high as they face the challenge of rising international threat levels and a backdrop of intense political, social and economic uncertainty. It is a challenge that demands a considered, proactive and dynamic response. It’s clear that new technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), can dramatically improve the effectiveness of today’s physical and cyber security systems and help us to better defend against a wide-spectrum of threats. Finding the balance Specifically speaking, for physical security systems to be effective, they must have the full support of the public. Airport-style environments where security checkpoint processes are implemented are both time consuming and obstructive, and feels, at times, they are in no one’s best interest. Oppressive, fortress-like environments are likely to quickly lose the backing of the public, who want to be able to go about their daily lives without being delayed or obstructed by cumbersome security checkpoints and procedures. For physical security systems to be effective, they must have the full support of the public However, after a large-scale security threat or attack occurs, it is often these more overt systems that we gravitate towards, often fueled by a proven track record of both deterrence and detection. It’s the antithesis of ‘out of site, out of mind’ security. Having these large, bulky overt security systems offer reassurance to people and create a greater sense of security. But what if we could instill this sense of security without monstrous overt systems? What if today’s physical security systems could allow for seamless people flow while creating safe environments, all done in a covert manner without interrupting peoples’ way of life? This is exactly what can be achieved with the some of the new physical security applications that incorporate AI. Security solutions with AI: how, what, where? Today, security solutions driven by AI technologies are being developed and can be covertly deployed across a range of physical environments to protect our global citizenry. These new AI-driven technologies are taking multiple different forms, depending on the locations they are designed to protect. Video management surveillance systems (commonly referred to as VMS systems) are being enhanced by AI/computer vision technology to identify objects. These enhanced VMS systems can be deployed both inside and outside of buildings to identify and flag forbidden objects, such as visible guns, knives or aggressive people, in a wide range of public spaces, such as schools, hospitals, sport stadiums, event venues and transportation hubs. Recognized threat objects in hand or suspicious behaviours can be identified and flagged instantaneously for onsite security to further investigate. In addition, targeted magnetic and radar sensor technologies, concealed in everyday objects like planter boxes or inside walls, can now scan individuals and bags entering a building for concealed threat objects. Using AI/machine learning, these two sensor solutions combined can identify metal content on body and bag and match the item to a catalog of threat items, such as guns, rifles, knives and bombs with metal shrapnel. Without this advanced multi-sensor solution, it becomes nearly impossible to discover a weapon on a person's body before it appears in an assailant’s hands. This multi-sensor solution allows for a touchless, unobtrusive access to a building, but allows for immediate notification to onsite security when a concealed threat is detected. The hidden technology thus empowers security staff to intercept threats before they evolve into a wider scale attack, while also maintaining the privacy and civil liberties of the public, unless, of course, they are carrying a concealed weapon or pose a physical threat. AI-powered solutions proactively help onsite security to effectively safeguard the public Unlike many large, fixed detection security systems, AI-powered solutions proactively help onsite security to effectively safeguard the public without causing mass obstruction and disruption. Soft target hardening Hardening a facility against physical attacks and threats can be expensive, as well as maintaining and running large fixed detection equipment. It may also result in the threat shifting to ‘softer’, less secure targets, for example schools, music venues and places of worship, all locations we’ve see active attacks in the past decade. Around the world, we have seen the devastation to communities and the aftermath impact of these attacks. In the USA, for example, in February 2018, a 19-year-old gunman walked into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, and opened fire, killing 17 students and faculty members. And in the UK in May 2017, a suicide bomber attacked a concert venue in Manchester, tragically killed 22 people. It is a global priority to make these soft target public gathering places more secure. But in doing so we cannot turn them into fortresses. The security industry, public sector and national and local government must collaborate to deploy intelligent systems with technology at their core to not only protect lives, but also preserve a way of life. Integrated systems and behavioral detection One of the biggest advantages of using AI technology is that it’s possible to integrate this intelligent software into building smarter, safer communities and cities. Essentially, this means developing a layered system that connects multiple sensors for the detection of visible and invisible threats. Integrated systems mean that threats can be detected and tracked, with onsite and law enforcement notified faster, and possibly before an assault begins to take place. In many ways, it’s the equivalent of a neighborhood watch program made far more intelligent through the use of AI. Using technology in this way means that thousands of people can be screened seamlessly and quickly, without invading their civil liberties or privacy. It’s not only knives, guns and explosives that intelligent systems can detect. They can also be trained to detect behavior and potential invisible biological threats, such as viral threats currently facing our world today. This does not mean profiling individuals. Instead, using AI that is deployed on existing CCTV or thermal camera systems, it looks for indicators that may identify a physical altercation and disturbance, an elevated body temperature, indicative of viral fever, or lack of a face mask for health safety compliance. When integrated, these solutions can provide onsite security with up-to-the-minute information to allow greater protection of the properties they serve. By using these intelligent, non-intrusive technologies, today’s security personnel are now more capable of detecting a wide range of threats. This is the future of public safety and security, and we should expect to see these new technologies becoming more common over the coming years, as cities around the world strive to create smart, safer communities. The human element While technology can make a significant impact to existing security systems, it would be wrong to position it as the end-all, be all to preventing future attacks. Technology is only part of the solution. Well trained security personnel are also required; individuals who know how to use new technologies and the data they provide, and then make informed decisions about how to engage a potential bad actor or threat. Not only will a properly trained security staff member help to prevent an attack from happening, but the extra insight provides by these intelligent systems can potentially interrupt an attacker in planning and walk through stages, or even before a weapon is drawn. This alone has many benefits beyond just preventing an attack. It means that authorities can help these individuals, some of whom may be suffering from mental health issues, to get the help they need from professional healthcare workers. By security personnel working with local authorities and healthcare professionals, potential attackers can get the support they need, from de-radicalisation programmes to specialized counseling, helping them return to being a healthy, productive member of society. These intelligent systems can potentially interrupt an attacker in planning AI for safer communities AI’s ability to detect visible or invisible threats or behavioral anomalies will prove enormously valuable to many sectors across our global economy. Perhaps none more so, though, than to institutes of education, where we have seen many violent attacks over the course of the last few years. Specifically, the application of AI for detecting odd behavioral activity could be used to identify potential active shooter attacks, or even students who may be depressed and prone to committing suicide. Both tragedies we see weekly around the world. One thing is clear, cross-sector collaboration and the application of integrated, intelligent AI technology that puts data and ultimate control into a human’s hands can be key to making our communities safer places to live.
Trade shows have always been a basic element of how the security industry does business - until the year 2020, that is. This year has seen the total collapse of the trade show model as a means of bringing buyers and sellers face to face. The COVID-19 pandemic has effectively made the idea of a large trade show out of the question. Today, even air travel seems incredibly risky, or at minimum a huge hassle. The good news is that the industry has adapted well without the shows. A series of “on-line shows” has emerged, driven by the business world’s increasing dependence on Zoom and other video conferencing platforms. The fact is, 2020 has provided plenty of opportunities for sellers to connect with buyers. It’s easy to dismiss these sessions as “Death by PowerPoint,” but some of them are incredibly informative. And conveniently accessible from the comfort of a home office. Internet transforming businesses We have already seen how the online world makes it easier than ever to connect with customers. In the consumer space, businesses like Uber, Shopify and Airbnb have proven that the Internet can transform how business is done. But in the security industry, we hear: “You can’t replace the value of meeting face to face.” That’s definitely true to some degree. A lesson of 2020 is the need to take a hard look at the economic model of trade shows However, the reality of 2020 suggests that there are alternatives that are almost - emphasis on almost - as good. And that don’t cost as much. And that don’t take away as much time from the office. And that don’t involve the effort of schlepping luggage through an airport yet again to a hotel in a beautiful city you will never see where you will spend three days in a big exhibit hall eating overpriced hot dogs and regretting your choice of footwear. Economic model of trade shows Sure, you’ll meet up with old pals, and get some value out of the experience. But how much value versus the cost? A lesson of 2020 is the need to take a hard look at the economic model of trade shows - how much they cost versus the value they provide. Considering how well we have gotten along without them, one wonders how and why trade shows have become such an integral part of our industry, and of hundreds of other industries, for that matter. I have had many conversations with exhibitors at trade shows in the last several decades. I have heard probably thousands of complaints about the slowness of the foot traffic, the high costs of exhibiting, the price and hassles of travel. The question I have often wondered (and asked): Is it worth it? Defray the costs Usually, the complaining exhibitor will reluctantly admit that it is, and/or provide some other justification, such as one of the following: All my competitors are here. If I don’t exhibit, it sends the wrong message to the market. That’s why I need to have the largest booth near the front of the show, too, because it’s all about perception and positioning ourselves in the market. We need the show for the sales leads, which drive our sales for the next six months. If I meet one large end user who turns into a big sale, the extra revenue pays for it all and makes everything worthwhile. This is the only time I get to see my sales staff or other coworkers from around the country. We have a sales meeting this week, too, so it helps to defray the costs. Success of alternatives The realities of 2020, and the challenges to the business world, will impact the nature of commerce for years to come Given the experience of the year 2020 without any trade shows, might some of these justifications melt away? At a minimum, companies will be taking a hard look next year to evaluate what they missed about the trade show experience, and more importantly, what the impact was on their business (if any). What is the future of trade shows? After the 2020 hiatus, exhibitors and attendees alike will be starting with a clean slate, taking a fresh look, reexamining the value proposition with new eyes, braced by the successes (while acknowledging the failures) of alternatives that emerged as necessities during a global pandemic. Ensuring safety and security The realities of 2020, and the challenges to the business world, will impact the nature of commerce for years to come - including trade shows. During the pandemic, we have all had to reinvent ourselves, deploy new strategies, work around new challenges, and in the end, hopefully, emerge better for it. There’s no reason trade shows shouldn’t undergo the same transformation. And it’s likely the “new normal” could look very different. The security market has found new opportunities during the pandemic, including new applications for existing technology and a renewed emphasis on the importance of ensuring safety and security. That positivity will hopefully carry our industry triumphantly into the new decade, and trade shows will adapt to find their place in the newly revitalized industry. As it should be.
If one employee stands less than six feet away from another employee, a fob attached to a lanyard around his or her neck emits an auditory beep – an immediate reminder to observe social distancing. If an employee were to be diagnosed with COVID-19, a cloud-based database provides a record of who at the company the sick employee had contact with. These capabilities of HID Location Services ensure social distancing and provide contact tracing to enable companies to return to work safely. They have been deployed in a pilot program at HID Global’s Corporate Headquarters in Austin, Texas. Social distancing using a BLE beacon To ensure social distancing, a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon is emitted from an employee’s fob (or from a badge that has the same functionality). The beacon communicates peer-to-peer with a beacon emitted by another employee’s fob or badge to alert if the location of the two employees is less than six feet apart. To ensure social distancing, a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon is emitted from an employee’s fob For contact tracing, the beacons communicate via a nearby “reader” (a BluFi BLE-to-Wi-Fi gateway) to the Bluzone cloud-based software-as-a-service. The building area covered by each reader constitutes a “zone,” and the system records when two beacons are signaling from the same zone, which indicates contact between employees. In effect, the system records – historically and forensically – who was near whom (and for how long) using the zone-based approach. “In the workplace, we provide organizations with visibility into the location of their workforce,” says Mark Robinton, Vice President, IoT Services Business Unit at HID Global. Pilot program spans variety of environments By documenting where a sick individual moved in the building, the system also can guide any need to close off a certain area for deep cleaning. Instead of quarantining a whole building, a company could quarantine a small subset of employees who were likely exposed. Importantly, the system only reports data, while management makes the actual decisions about how to respond. The site of the pilot program is the 250,000-square-foot HID Global facility in Austin, which includes a variety of environments, including manufacturing areas, an executive suite, cubicles, a training area, a cafeteria, and lobbies. This spectrum of use cases enables the pilot program to evaluate how the system works in various scenarios. The building in Austin has two floors, plenty of natural lighting and emphasises sustainability in its design. HID Location Services ensure social distancing and provide contact tracing Pilot starts small and expands For the pilot program, 80 readers were installed in a wide area in the facility, including a variety of environments. Initially 30 badges and 30 fobs, all BLE-enabled, were issued to employees. If a badge identifies another nearby beacon (suggesting a social distancing failure), it emits a blinking LED light, which can be seen by the offending co-worker. The fobs emit an audible beep, which employees have overwhelmingly said they prefer. Observers overseeing the pilot program have documented employee reaction and comments. It emits a blinking LED light, which can be seen by the offending co-worker There were challenges in setting up the pilot program remotely to ensure fewer employees were on site during the pandemic. The equipment was provisioned in Florida and then shipped to the Austin location. Fine-tuning was required to adjust the signal strength of the BLE beacons. The badges were initially more powerful, but the strength was dialed back to be comparable to the fobs and within the six-foot social distancing range. Signal strength is also a variable in diverse environments – the 2.4 Ghz signal tends to reflect easily off metal, so adjustments in signal strength are needed in a factory setting, for example, versus a collection of cubicles. “This facility is large enough and diverse enough that it provides great test results and quality data to analyze,” says Dean Young, Physical Security Manager at HID Global. “Our employees are eager to be part of the pilot to demonstrate that we use the technologies we provide to our customers, and they want to help us stay in compliance with social distancing and contact tracing.” Ensuring privacy while protecting employees HID Global’s headquarters had approximately 425 employees before the coronavirus pandemic lowered the number drastically to include only essential workers. As more people return to work, additional fobs and badges are being issued to expand the scope of the pilot program. The program is also incorporating contact tracing of suppliers and others who visit the facility. Except when triggered by contact among employees, locations are not recorded. Each employee’s location is always available in real-time (e.g. in case of an emergency), but they are not “tracked.” Through BluFi placement and geofence capabilities, the system closes off private areas where location should not be monitored, such as a rest room. Geofencing also identifies when employees enter and/or exit the area covered by the pilot program. Although each beacon is associated with an employee, the employee’s identity is not part of the data stored in the cloud, so there are no privacy concerns. Data is completely anonymized, and no personally identifiable information (PII) is stored in Bluzone. Other computer systems in a company, such as a human resources (HR) program, can privately and securely store the identities associated with each beacon. Other applications for HID location services In addition to social distancing and contact tracing applications, HID Location Services offer other use cases ranging from asset tracking and employee safety/security to location analytics. For example, the system can analyze room usage for better building management and operational efficiency. It can also quickly find people in emergency situations. These use cases ensure continued value for a system even after concerns about social distancing and contact tracing have faded. The system can analyze room usage for better building management and operational efficiency Another big selling point is the ability of a company to be better prepared in case of a future pandemic, or a second wave of this one, says Robinton. The HID Location Services social distancing and contact tracing applications will be available at the end of Q3 and will be rolled out through HID Global’s existing integrator channel. Vertical markets likely to embrace the technology include healthcare, where hospitals need to track patients as they come in and to know which other patients or staff they may have been exposed to. The financial sector is another likely market, as is manufacturing, which is looking to avoid the prospect of shutting down an entire plant. It’s better to address the three or four people who were near a sick employee than to shut down the plant. In the hospitality industry, fobs can be used to signal duress by the housekeeping staff.
As a cloud-based platform for service providers in the security, smart home and smart business markets, Alarm.com has adapted quickly to changing conditions during the coronavirus pandemic. In the recent dynamic environment, Alarm.com has kept focus on supporting their service provider partners so they can keep local communities protected. “We moved quickly to establish work-from-home protocols to protect our employees and minimize impact on our partners,” says Anne Ferguson, VP of Marketing at Alarm.com. The Customer Operations and Reseller Education (CORE) team has operated without interruption to provide support to partners. Sales teams are utilizing webinars and training resources to inform and educate partners about the latest products, tools, and solutions. Alarm.com’s partner tools are essential for remote installations and support of partner accounts. Helping customers remain connected Adapting to challenges of the coronavirus pandemic, Alarm.com is further investing in solutions that help customers remain connected and engaged. The company has created a resource hub called “Succeeding Remotely” that provides tools, tips and news links that partners can use to adapt their business operations. From adjusting sales and installation techniques to maintaining cellular upgrades, Alarm.com is helping partners stay connected to customers remotely, keep their teams trained, and address rapidly evolving customer concerns without rolling trucks.The company has created a resource hub called “Succeeding Remotely “Additionally, after seeing all that our partners are doing to support their local communities in need, we were compelled to highlight those efforts with ongoing videos called Good Connections, which we’re sharing with our partner community to spark more ideas and ways to help,” says Ferguson. “Though our partners have experienced varying degrees of disruption to their business, we’re inspired by their adaptability, ingenuity and resilience,” says Ferguson. “Along with establishing proper safeguards for operating in homes and businesses, our partners are leveraging our support resources more heavily, while our entire staff has worked tirelessly to deliver new, timely resources.” Do-It-Together solutions Alarm.com partners are successfully employing Do-It-Together (DIT) solutions, focusing on 3G-to-LTE upgrades, and pivoting to new verticals like commercial and wellness. Many are also streamlining their business operations and taking advantage of virtual training opportunities to enhance their technicians’ skills and knowledge, says Ferguson. Do-It-Together installs involve depending on customers to perform part or all of the installation process. Partners can send customers fully configured kits with mounting instructions, or technicians may guide customers on a remote video call. Alarm.com’s tools, training and products help partners modify remote installation options depending on each customer’s needs. End users can validate the Alarm.com Smart Gateway with their central station that sensors they have mounted were done correctly using the Alarm.com mobile app Alarm.com Smart Gateway For example, the Alarm.com Smart Gateway can be pre-configured with indoor and outdoor cameras for easy customer installation and to reduce the likelihood of future service calls. Also, end users can validate with their central station that sensors they have mounted were done correctly using the Alarm.com mobile app. “DIT is helping our partners continue onboarding customers and avoid backlogs,” says Ferguson. “We’ve been pleasantly surprised by the resiliency and level of future investment that our residential and commercial partners have shown in the face of adversity,” adds Ferguson. For example, a significant number of business customers have used the slow period to install systems that are typically too disruptive to put in during normal business hours. Similarly, service providers are adopting new technologies or business models, such as cloud-based access control. “They’re often saying to us, ‘I’m going to take this opportunity to make changes to improve our business,’ and have been working closely with us on training and business consulting to support their efforts,“ she says. Shift to the cloud Ferguson sees a growing preference for cloud-managed surveillance and access systems over ones that have historically been run on-premise. The technology itself is attractive, but especially driving change is the enhancement to the daily lives of service providers and customers, which have been strained during this time. “The foundational benefit of our cloud-based solution is the hassle-free, seamless customer experience it delivers,” says Ferguson. “We make this possible by taking ownership of the servers, software maintenance, firmware updates, health monitoring, and more. With cloud technology, these aspects become invisible to the customer and take a lot off their plate, which is more important than ever.” End users can take advantage of Smart Tip video tutorials to help with DIT installations, or they can use the Alarm.com Wellcam to connect with loved ones anywhere.End users can take advantage of Smart Tip video tutorials to help with DIT installations Partners can attend training workshops focused on remote installation tactics, while driving consumer interest in new offerings through Alarm.com’s Customer Connections platform. The goal is to make it simple for partners to stay connected to their customers to maximize lifetime account value. “We are well-positioned to endure the pandemic because of the strength of our partners in their markets along with our investments in technology, hardware and our team,” says Ferguson. “As restrictions slowly lift, there is cautious optimism that the residential, commercial, property management, plumbing/HVAC, builder and other verticals will recover quickly. We believe that as more partners adopt the DIT model and add commercial and wellness RMR, they will find increasing opportunities to deploy security, automation, video, video analytics, access and more throughout their customer base.”
The contactless technologies will enhance passenger safety and security during the pandemic. Vision-Box, a pioneer in biometrics seamless travel, automated border management and electronic identity management solutions dedicated to improving the quality and security in government services, travel and border control, has announced the implementation of an integrated Biometric experience for Emirates Airline at Terminal 3 of the Dubai International Airport. Vision-Box’s contactless technology Vision-Box’s Orchestra™ Digital Identity Management Platform - a state-of-the-art touchless and contactless passenger processing at the airport to provide passenger safety and security in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Vision-Box’s contactless technology will offer a sophisticated traveler experience, comprising an identification, clearance, and safety monitoring environment. The new infrastructure offers a suite of digital tools that reduces or eliminates passenger contact with touchscreen surfaces, and physical interaction with airport and airline staff, thus providing a safe travel experience. Some of the key automated features of the Orchestra Platform provided for Emirates passengers include: Touchless identification using facial biometrics Contactless security checks for clearance Digital travel document authentication – eliminating the need for carrying paper documents Touchless lounge access Touchless boarding Additional benefits This also reduces long waits at checkpoints and curtails crowding at clearance hotspotsThe Orchestra™ Digital Identity Management Platform removes the time-consuming task of manual identification, meaning that passengers do not need to physically interact with potentially exposed touchpoints or exchange travel documents manually at counters. This also reduces long waits at checkpoints and curtails crowding at clearance hotspots, allowing passengers to navigate the airport a lot quicker and safely without the need for interacting with other people, thereby reducing the transmission and exposure to pathogens. Vision-Box and Emirates reaffirmed their mutual commitment by signing a long-term agreement to deploy and advance a digital shift in passenger operations at Dubai Airport and beyond, aimed at keeping travellers and staff safe. Advanced touchless biometrics and contactless clearance technology used at Terminal 3 shifts the passenger clearance process from a manual interaction to one of minimal physical contact with automated self-service devices. Using the award-winning Vision-Box Orchestra™ Digital Identity Management Platform, Emirates is optimizing traveler flow and passenger processing through security and clearance checks being performed in less time. Facial recognition biometrics offers the highest level of traveler identity security and significant improvements over traditional manual and touch-based identification procedures in terms of hygiene, accuracy and privacy protections. Vision-Box and Emirates alliance The collaboration with Emirates is the result of a successful 4-year trial of digital identification technology, when one of the world’s leading airlines selected Vision-Box as the key technology provider and partner to deliver a One-ID end-to-end biometric solution that complies with all international security and privacy standards. Travelers digital enrollment allows them to be automatically recognized and for contactless passageIn March 2019, Emirates launched its Biometric Path for select passengers at Dubai Airport T3. Travellers who chose to opt-in, enrolled their facial biometrics during the check-in process to generate their unique One-ID Single Identification Token. This digital enrollment allowed passengers to be automatically recognized and allowed for contactless passage through border control, boarding, and Emirates lounge access using eGates. The new partnership with Vision-Box will now expand the enhanced contactless traveler experience to all Emirates Airline passengers. The agreement also covers an Emirates Group Enterprise wide framework that will allow enhanced contactless access security measures to be deployed across all of the Emirate Group companies and affiliates. Contactless experience Miguel Leitmann, the CEO of Vision-Box said “The need for touchless identity management and seamless passenger flow management is the new reality. As air travel dynamics have evolved under the covid-19 pandemic, the importance of a safe contactless passenger experience is paramount to the industry’s revival. Emirates has been one of the first in the world to recognize the need for contactless digital technology for passenger safety and have sought to swiftly implement the most advanced technology with Vision-Box’s touchless and contactless technology." "With this combined with Orchestra, our smart passenger flow management platform, Emirates is fully equipped to offer revolutionary world class contactless experience for passengers navigating though the airport.” “We are excited to build this partnership with Emirates and together deliver safe, secure and seamless experiences to the millions of travellers who chose to fly with Emirates.” Installed first phase of contactless technology As part of the Orchestra™ Digital Identity Management Platform implementation, Vision-Box has deployed and delivered the first phase of the biometric self-service touchless devices at areas in Concourse B at Terminal 3. The Contactless Passenger solution includes eGates and VBoT™ IoT Biometric devices located at manual counters. The VBoT provides contactless biometric face enrollment and identification for Economy, Business and First-Class travellers and is natively embedded into the Emirates check-in application. Last generation smart eGates enable the use of Seamless Self-service processes for Lounge access and Automated Boarding that ensure a contactless travel experience. TVS allows Emirates to biometrically identify all the US outbound passengers at boarding Emirates is already leveraging on the flexibility of the Orchestra platform on flights to the USA, directly connecting Vision-Box solution with the U.S. CBP TVS (Traveler Verification Service) from Dubai. In cooperation with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, TVS does not require pre-enrollment and allows Emirates to identity biometrically at boarding all the US outbound passengers. Subsequently, Vision-Box will scale up and implement the contactless passenger solutions across all Terminal 3 concourses. Certification and compliance The Orchestra™ Service Platform is fully compliant with Data Privacy regulations through its unique Privacy-by-Design certification. It operates under user-centric business rules and is the kernel of the advanced management of Identity proofing and Flow Monitoring of Passenger processes. The platform’s powerful capability allows it to process the full extent of Emirates passenger volume, thanks to its future-proof scalable design and resilient architecture. With Emirates and Vision-Box building a strong case for contactless and hygienic biometric security on an enterprise wide approach, they are providing the aviation industry with a model for business continuity in challenging conditions. Together they are enabling a distinctive touchless, contactless brand asset in the world of aviation 4.0 that is technologically grounded and inspires passenger confidence. The solution unleashes the power of the IATA One-ID framework as a tool to combat future epidemics and other threats.
As a multi-faceted community with several buildings, public safety services, healthcare facilities, schools, childcare, barracks, a commissary and a visitor’s center, a typical U.S. Military base is a city in itself. Beyond the protection of armed forces personnel, the base is responsible for the safety of many civilians and civil servants. With such high standards and complex needs, U.S Military bases recognize the need for intelligent security systems that enable proactive monitoring, provide fast and smart forensics and comply with NDAA Section 889. Challenges faced by the US Military Base Inadequate situational awareness - The size and diversity of the military base pose a challenge. Past security measures led to gaps in coverage, leaving the base vulnerable to both internal and external threats. In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic created the need for increased situational awareness. Without a real-time and dynamic understanding of the environment, it became increasingly difficult to enforce preventative measures to control and mitigate the risk of transmission. Slow incident response time - Speed is critical. Within the confines of the military base, the consequences of slow incident response time can be devastating and even sometimes deadly. The longer it takes for the Security Operation Center (SOC) to gather, understand, and analyze the details of the incident, the greater the threat becomes. It became clear that responding to an Active Shooter, vehicle breach, or an assault, required immediate action that wasn’t available through their existing technology. Limited real-time analytic capabilities - The base wanted to prevent incidents from occurring rather than reacting after an incident has occurred. The traditional method of receiving an emergency call and responding after the fact was too costly. The US Base needed a platform that would provide the security team with automation notifications and alerts based on anomalies and rule-violations that were captured on video. NDAA-889 compliance - All military bases must meet the NDAA-889 compliance which states that the U.S. Government has banned specific telecommunications and video surveillance equipment utilising chips manufactured in China. Government contractors must help agencies remove/ replace banned equipment by Aug 12, 2021. Why Ava? One U.S. Military Base recently turned to Ava for an end-to-end intelligent security solution that would meet its full range of needs. Their requirements were a platform that was: Proactive - When there is a need to respond to a threat, the response needed to be immediate. Precise - On a base of this size, it was critical to pinpoint the exact location and nature of a security event in seconds - not hours or days. Simple - The system needed be straightforward to implement, manage and use within the existing infrastructure and cameras. Ease of use saves time and lives. Scalable - The system needed to be able to scale to thousands of cameras. Protecting military personnel and staff at the base Using Ava, operators can add maps of all the US Military Bases’ locations to gain situational awareness and insights Ava understood that the ability to protect military personnel and civilians that run the US Military Base is of utmost importance with even seconds being critical. Ava’s wicked-fast and smart forensic searches and powerful analytics transform the manually intensive examination of massive surveillance footage into accurate and useful results within mere minutes. Security operators are using powerful appearance, event, or image search functions to narrow down and track people or objects of interest. Using Ava, security operators can add maps of all the US Military Bases’ locations to gain situational awareness and insights. Each map can be configured and includes camera views, alarm views, as well as the ability to track people and objects as they move around the campus. Only Ava could meet their challenges by providing: Advanced Situational Awareness: Powered by Ava’s Smart Presence, the company’s use of AI and machine learning allows security personnel and operators to detect anything unusual at any time. Ava Aware VMS understands perimeters and behaviours, identifies, classifies, and tracks people of interest, vehicles, or other objects to send alerts before threats escalate. Operators now receive immediate alerts on unidentified loud noises including the exact source of the sound through microphones. The US Military Base’s security teams are now able to stop threatening actions, before there is damage to property or people. Rapid Incident Response: Powered by Ava’s Spotlight, video streams change dynamically to bring only the relevant feeds to the attention of the operator. Real-time alerts and notifications show up on the video wall to describe the incident, the time, and place it occurred. Using Ava’s Smart Search, the base is able to search by event and similarity to perform appearance and image detection powered by machine learning capabilities to comb through countless hours of video within seconds. Real-time Analytics: Ava provided the US Military Base with threat detection and notifications in real-time and uses intelligent algorithms and self-learning to detect abnormal behavior. The platform will alert the base’s security operators in real-time. It will intelligently highlight what’s relevant from all of the US Base’s cameras, in real-time, all the time. NDAA Compliant - Ava’s video hardware is TAA (Trade Agreement Act) Compliant, enabling any base to be fully NDAA 889 compliant. Ava’s solution provided operational efficiencies, such as: Seamless integration with existing cameras - Whether a military base is replacing all or some of their cameras, Ava Aware VMS easily integrates into and enhances existing cameras with the same AI capabilities. Now, existing ONVIF cameras are enhanced with analytics such as object detection, people and vehicle count, similarity based searching and more. By linking all existing cameras into a larger, AI-based video analytic platform, the base can leverage these powerful analytics across ‘all the cameras, all the time’. Access Control Integration - Ava’s solution easily integrates into access control, remote monitoring, and existing infrastructure. Monitoring the entire military base can be done as part of a single video management system. Scalable - The platform can easily be clustered to meet the growing needs of a base, from hundreds to thousands of cameras. Deployment simplicity - Ava’s system is designed for overall simplicity and readiness for deployment. With security cameras that were ready to go, fully loaded with out-of-the-box Ava Aware software, the base could easily replace cameras in a phased implementation, minimizing installation time and eliminating downtime. Ava’s simplified licensing/pricing model further simplified deployment. Plug and play configuration Plug and play configuration removes the need for user names and passwords The same simplicity extends to maintaining scalable management within a base’s group configuration policies. Plug and play configuration removes the need for user names and passwords, pre-configuration steps, and default settings. And finally, the base chose the Ava system for its general ease of use. Security operators now have access to detailed camera information, activity logs, and advanced video adjustments in a single, user-friendly screen view. Set up for success with intelligent video security The US Military Base is now set up for success with an end-to-end intelligent video security system that will scale with their needs. Highlights include: Camera installation, which will put the base into full compliance with NDAA-889. The US Military Base now has the highest level of security, to protect against the vulnerabilities of the connected world. The equipment has end-to-end encryption, factory-installed certificates, and records detailed audit trails of both operators and administrators to assist with any other compliance requirements. Security operators have gone from having ‘data overload’ to easily and quickly accessing ‘actionable insights’ to drive more confident and proactive security decisions. By leveraging powerful analytics, the base’s operators are able to respond in real-time and investigate incidents faster and with fewer resources. Operators are able to act on the system’s identification of objects, events, anomalies, and similarities that detect issues as they unfold. Furthermore, operators also have full occupancy insight to manage the flow of people and traffic across the base, in support of COVID-19 rules and regulations. Ava Smart Presence includes a people and vehicle counter to track objects in real-time, allowing for historical analysis and reporting. Configurable maps of all locations provide instant situational awareness and insights. The US Military Base seamlessly integrated the new system with existing access controls and non-banned cameras to cost-effectively meet the mandate and fully leverage analytics across the entire security system. Security teams at the base can trust in a powerful security solution that doesn’t inadvertently contain technology that poses a new threat. Whether enhancing existing cameras with advanced video analytics, replacing the entire video security system to meet the NDAA mandate, or creating a solution from scratch, the U.S. Military and supporting agencies can benefit from Ava’s secure cameras and leverage Ava’s powerful analytics for the highest levels of proactive security.
Empire House, the luxury business members' club due to launch in West Yorkshire in a few weeks, has invested a five-figure sum in state-of-the-art, automated security systems to create a slick customer experience, intensify site security and help protect clients from COVID-19. In readiness for opening in a few weeks’ time, the Slaithwaite-based business center – which will incorporate offices, a ‘lounge’ area with stocked bar and corporate and event facilities – is set to attract businesspeople from all over West Yorkshire and offer 24-hour access to tenants. CCTV and intruder system Recognizing a need to heighten client experience and reduce the manpower required, Empire House has invested in CCTV, access control, fire and intruder alarm support from Huddersfield-based specialists, Centurion Fire & Security Ltd. The automated system has been designed to make the management of the building simple. The access control, which can screen visitors via a camera, also offers the option of COVID-19 functionality Able to be programmed to allow and deny access around the building, the system ensures that no unauthorized individuals can gain entry. It is wholly integrated with the CCTV and intruder system, permitting ‘triggers’ and push-notifications to key holders when an area has been ‘breached’. The access control, which can screen visitors via a camera, also offers the option of COVID-19 functionality, allowing or denying entry based on whether they are wearing a mask or not. Manned onsite teams Amy Byram is the founder of Empire House. Commenting on the investment, she said: “We wanted to provide the utmost security for our clients, whilst ensuring that their experience is slick and uninterrupted – the last thing that people want is to feel that their privacy is being intruded, and we have got that balance just right.” “I am impressed with the functionality of the software, which will allow the management team to ensure security is maximal at all times, without the costly need for manned onsite teams. We can lock and unlock doors directly from an app, whilst enabling us to mark people as safe or missing in an emergency. We hope our clients will be as equally as impressed by the technology as we are.”
Otay-Tijuana Venture LLC, a US-Mexican group of companies operating Tijuana International Airport’s Cross Border XpressTM (CBX), has chosen SAFR from RealNetworks’ video analytics technology to be used throughout the San Diego - Tijuana terminal in order to optimize operations and improve passenger flow. The first building to connect the United States to a foreign airport terminal, CBX serves millions of passengers that cross the border as part of their trip, helping them avoid unforeseen delays in the congested border crossings of San Ysidro and Otay. Video analytics technology “We are very satisfied with the performance, specific dashboards, and team support that SAFR offers, providing the necessary insights that are required to run such an important operation like CBX,” said Julio Armentariz, CTO of CBX. The 390 ft long bridge is a hub for many daily situations where technology, process, and people work together to create a safe and efficient passenger experience. AI video analytics technology ensures CBX staff have actionable data at their fingertips as they monitor passenger flows and make real-time decisions. Mask detection feature SAFR has recently added additional features specifically designed to help customers respond to the global COVID-19 “We are extremely proud to help CBX in their day to day operations, contributing to more efficiency and quality of journey for the thousands of passengers that frequent the terminal every day,” said Jose Larrucea, RealNetworks Senior VP of International Sales. SAFR has recently added additional features specifically designed to help customers respond to the global COVID-19 pandemic including mask detection and occupancy counting. CBX has applied the mask detection feature to passenger flow monitoring to better track mask compliance and gather critical operations data. Face recognition technology "We see optimal potential in RealNetworks’ technology and we are looking into expanding its use in other areas within CBX in order to increase operational efficiency," added Armentariz. SAFR offers highly-accurate, fast, low-biased face recognition and additional face and person-based computer vision features. SAFR’s NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) scores for speed, accuracy, and bias combine to distinguish SAFR as one of the leaders in real-world accuracy and performance.
Birmingham’s hospitality businesses have benefited from significantly increased outdoor dining space, following the deployment of ATG Access’ Surface Guard system at a number of locations around Hurst Street. With many businesses struggling as a result of the restrictions placed on public venues by the government, Birmingham City Council was keen to make it possible for people to return to the city’s usually bustling bars and restaurants in a safe, socially distanced way. It recognized that pedestrianizing key areas would significantly increase capacity and enable venues to take advantage of the government’s sidewalk license scheme. However, the council also wanted to keep the roads open to normal traffic between Monday and Friday to minimize disruption, while allowing bars and restaurants to use the carriageway for outside dining space at the weekend. Vehicle access extension plates Requiring an innovative, flexible solution in order to achieve this temporary pedestrianisation, Birmingham City Council contacted renowned event-protection business, Crowdguard. With less than 24 hours’ notice, Crowdguard deployed 65 metres of ATG Access’s hugely sought-after Surface Guard barrier system in five different locations across the city center, with four locations having Vehicle Access Units. Surface Guard is a completely surface-mounted system, meaning that there is no damage to the underlying road Thanks to the specialist vehicle access extension plates, the barriers provide access to normal traffic from Monday to Friday, while also creating safe, pedestrianized areas with no unauthorized vehicle access on Saturdays and Sundays. Surface Guard is a completely surface-mounted system, meaning that there is no damage to the underlying road, with a lightweight and modular design that makes it quick and easy to deploy with no machinery required. Crash test standard Without appropriate security measures in place, pedestrianizing busy city center can render the public more vulnerable to hostile vehicle attacks, thanks to greater numbers of people gathered in outside areas. A Surface Guard barrier can withstand the impact of a 7,200kg vehicle traveling at 32kph and has been tested twice in accordance to the IWA 14 crash test standard, providing world renowned protection against such attacks. The barriers are also designed to allow people to flow in and out of an area with minimal disruption, preventing the unnecessary build-up of crowds. This makes them ideal for facilitating social distancing, while also providing further protection from vehicle as a weapon attacks. The temporary pedestrianization of Hurst Street was hailed a success after its first weekend of operation, which saw an estimated increase in trading of up to 50% for participating venues. Offering flexible solution Iain Moran, Director at ATG Access, commented: “Birmingham City Council has done a brilliant job supporting its hospitality businesses, recognizing very quickly the value that pedestrianization could bring to the sector. Increasing capacity in this way has only become more important in light of the new 10pm curfew, so we hope to see more councils and local authorities following suit to give venues the best chance of survival." In this situation, Surface Guard offered the perfect flexible solution, ensuring all needs can be met" "However, it’s also vital to keep public safety and security front and centers when making any changes to our urban landscapes, as well as bearing in mind the impact that pedestrianization can have on other businesses in the area. In this situation, Surface Guard offered the perfect flexible solution, ensuring all needs can be met.” Support hospitality businesses Deborah Ainscough, Operations Director at Crowdguard, said: “We are proud that, through innovations such as Surface Guard, we have been able to make a real difference to Birmingham’s hospitality sector, helping as many people as possible to show their support for local businesses in a safe and secure way.” James Betjemann, Head of Enterprise Zone and Curzon Delivery at Birmingham City Council, commented: “Crowdguard provided the council with a number of temporary barriers to facilitate a series of weekend road closures to help support hospitality businesses deal with the impact of COVID-19. Deborah and the team were able to mobilize and install the barriers at very short notice and provided excellent customer service throughout the scheme.”
Malwarebytes, a provider of advanced endpoint protection and remediation solutions, announced that it was selected by NatWest Group to deliver premium cybersecurity security solutions to the bank’s consumer and business banking customers worldwide. NatWest Group customers will now be able get a free license to install Malwarebytes Premium to protect their digital experiences from within their Online Banking portal. “Keeping our customers safe and secure is of paramount importance to us,” said Alasdair MacFarlane, Head of Fraud Prevention NatWest. “We are the only UK bank to offer premium virus protection to our customers for free and are working with Malwarebytes to deliver this.” Increase awareness among customers New customer offering is experiencing positive adoption rates, quickly reaching the initial target of NatWest Group The new customer offering is experiencing positive adoption rates, quickly reaching the initial target of NatWest Group. The program has over 100,000 customer downloads to date and further efforts are planned to increase awareness amongst their customer base. “Providing digital protection, productivity, and peace of mind to customers is increasingly critical for companies and consumers as the threat landscape continues to rapidly evolve,” said Marcin Kleczynski, CEO of Malwarebytes. “Malwarebytes has been a champion of security since our inception and we’re thrilled to be able to partner with innovative, socially responsible organizations like NatWest Group who are going above and beyond to ensure the safety of their customers.” Malwarebytes for NatWest Group is available for personal customers on up to ten devices and for business customers on up to thirty devices. Users can download Malwarebytes from their online banking portal after logging in. This offering is available for customers of NatWest, Royal Bank of Scotland, Isle of Man Bank, NatWest International and Ulster Bank.
Round table discussion
School shootings are a high-profile reminder of the need for the highest levels of security at our schools and education facilities. Increasingly, a remedy to boost the security at schools is to use more technology. However, no technology is a panacea, and ongoing violence and other threats at our schools suggest some level of failure. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How have security solutions failed our schools and what is the solution?
The COVID-19 global pandemic continues, and more and more companies are looking for ways to continue (or resume) operations while minimizing the coronavirus’s negative impact on their workforce, or potentially contributing to disease spread among the wider population. Thermal cameras have been proposed as a solution to screen individuals for elevated body temperature since the beginning of the pandemic. However, the technology has its detractors, and there are regulatory questions. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How can thermal cameras be used effectively for fever detection to screen for infectious diseases?
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning have made a big splash in the physical security market, transforming video analytics to a new level of accuracy. In fact, the terms have become common buzzwords throughout the industry. However, the potential for AI and machine learning to impact the physical security industry goes far beyond their ability to improve video analytics. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Beyond better video analytics, how can artificial intelligence (AI) and/or machine learning benefit the physical security market?