In a bid to strengthen the cyber defenses of governments and enterprises, Spire Solutions, the Middle East and Africa’s value-added distributor will once again be the official distribution partner of GISEC, the cybersecurity event taking place from 31st May-2nd June at Dubai World Trade Center (DWTC). Accompanied by technology partners including Solarwinds, XMCyber, SecurityScorecard, ThreatConnect, Rapid7, Digital Shadows, Gigamon, Corelight, 3Data, and Outthink, Spire Solutions will sho...
Genetec Inc., a technology provider of unified security, public safety, operations, and business intelligence solutions announces an update to its camera registry module for Genetec clearance™ (clearance) a digital evidence management system that facilitates collaboration between public safety agencies, corporate security departments, businesses, and the public. Video evidence is an invaluable tool to help investigators review events, assist the public, and solve crimes. However, the meth...
The first inter airport CONNECT event, which took place online from 20 – 21 April 2021, provided a much-anticipated meeting platform for the international airport community this year. More than 1,700 registered visitors from 115 countries have used the opportunity to log on to the platform to network, watch webinar content live and on-demand, view product showcases, and visit virtual stands of exhibitors. 88 exhibiting companies from 23 countries participated in the event (74% from abroad...
The topic of video analytics has been talked and written about for decades, and yet is still one of the cutting-edge themes in the physical security industry. Some say yesterday’s analytics systems tended to overpromise and underdeliver, and there are still some skeptics. However, newer technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) are reinvigorating the sector and enabling it to finally live up to its promise. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What new technologies a...
SAFR® from RealNetworks, Inc., a face recognition and visual analytics platform specializing in computer vision optimized for real-world challenges, announces it was awarded its third Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract. This contract enables SAFR to advance its computer vision platform to support perimeter protection and domestic search and rescue missions. The SBIR contract allows SAFR to enhance its platform to run on an NVIDIA® Jetson AGX Xavier™ based UGV syste...
Ping Identity, the Intelligent identity solution for the enterprise, announces the first annual Ping YOUniverse (formerly IDENTIFY), an identity security event where security professionals come together to share real-world identity management stories and solutions for improved digital experiences. The event will empower current and prospective Ping Identity customers, security and IAM professionals, IT architects, CISOs and line-of-business owners with actionable examples of how to overcome hyb...
The first inter airport CONNECT event, taking place online from 20 – 21 April 2021, provides a much anticipated trade and networking event for the global airport community, which has been impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. inter airport CONNECT inter airport CONNECT is a two-day online trading, networking and webinar event for airport professionals. Visitors can virtually meet relevant exhibitors, browse informative product presentations and follow webinars on current industry trends. Similar to a live event, there are several options for visitors to get in touch with exhibitors, drop their business card at the virtual stand, pre-book meetings with exhibitors or instantly contact exhibitors, as they browse the virtual stand. The time duration of the online event, which will take place from April 20 to April 21, 2021, is from 8 am to 4 pm GMT. Visitors can participate for free and the platform is open for registration and pre-booking of meetings. Virtual meetings with exhibitors The inter airport CONNECT match-making functionality is now available to arrange pre-booked meetings In current times of travel restrictions, staying in touch with customers and suppliers is key, to stay up-to-date with latest trends and to discuss upcoming development projects. The inter airport CONNECT match-making functionality is now available to arrange pre-booked meetings, with all meetings taking place from 20 – 21 April live, on the inter airport CONNECT platform. Arranging for a meeting is very easy and intuitive, with no third-party software required. Visitors simply need to login, fill in their profile with their interests and they can start searching for exhibitors to send out meeting invites. Webinar program with airport industry experts The online event will feature a daily program of webinars by industry experts that will provide an opportunity to gain useful insights into the latest market developments, as well as technical expertise concerning new industry applications and solutions. Key players from the industry, as well as trade bodies, will provide exclusive insights into latest technologies and case studies on subjects, such as the Smart Airport, sustainability and many more. The conference language is English. The webinar program consists of two days filled with sessions, covering a vast variety of topics and speakers from key leaders in the industry. The two-day webinar schedule includes: On Tuesday, April 20, 2021 09:30 - 10:00 - GATE InnoAirport – the first real-life platform for the airport industry – GATE e.V. and Sittig Technologies GmbH. 10:20 - 10:50 - Despite drop in demand, innovative solutions abound for a smarter airport – Proavia – French Pavilion. 11:10 - 12:10 - British Aviation Group: Innovation in Sustainable Airports – British Aviation Group, Mott MacDonald, Egis, Wood Group UK Ltd, Grimshaw Architects, and Logika Consultants. 12:30 - 13:00 - The Italian way to excellence in the airport industry – Air Tech Italy and One Works, OCEM Airfield Technology, as well as SITTI. 13:10 - 13:22 - Airport Market Intelligence for a New Reality - Momberger Airport Information. 13:30 - 14:00 - Electrification of Ground Support Equipment with Plug & Play Battery Solutions from Webasto - Goldhofer AG and Webasto Thermo & Comfort SE. 14:30 - 15:00 - Zero-Emission Refueling Vehicle Technologies – A Greener Recovery – Titan Aviation. On Wednesday, April 21, 2021 09:00 - 09:40 - Recovery through Revolution - Mott MacDonald. 10:00 - 10:30 - Simultaneous Development of 14 Airports in Greece - FRAPORT Greece. 11:00 - 11:30 - Green, Smart, Safe, and Efficient Airports - An ambitious and challenging path towards a sustainable aviation system - Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics (Fraunhofer IML). 12:00 - 13:00 - Connected Airport – How ‘digital twins’ can optimize asset operation – GATE e.V., Loclab Consulting, Esri Deutschland GmbH, and T-Systems International GmbH. 13:30 - 14:00 - GATE - idea givers for global air travel - BEUMER Group/GATE e.V., Airsiders GmbH. 14:15 - 14:26 - Protect Precious Fuels for Safer Aircraft - Parker Hannifin EMEA Sàrl. 14:30 - 15:00 - Check-in with Ammeraal Beltech & Megadyne – Ammeraal Beltech.
Axis invites customers to join the virtual booth in the Genetec Connect’DX Partner Pavilion from April 20-22, 2020. At this online trade show, one can listen to numerous keynote speeches, including “Evolution of Security IOT” held by Dr. Martin Gren and Fredrick Nilsson. At the virtual booth, you will be able to engage with the on-demand product videos, educational content and chat live with Axis technology experts. The keynote speech, being held by two of Axis senior leadership. Dr, Martin Gren, Co-founder and Fredrik Nilsson, Vice President Americas. They will cover how they have been unifying security through the years with Genetec. And will highlight some of the very latest offerings and integrations to Genetec products. Visit the virtual booth to chat with Axis representatives as well as explore the following offerings: Axis Body Worn camera system and integration with Genetec Security Center and Clearance Smart city and traffic joint solutions Joint cybersecurity integrations such as those for encryption and for Security Center Firmware Vault, which handles secure camera firmware management QR code access management integrations of Axis devices via Genetec ClearID and Genetec Security Center Access control integrations to Security Center Synergis
Acronis, a pioneer in cyber protection, introduces a new partner portal that delivers greater support and enhanced marketing and sales capabilities to the service providers, distributors, and resellers in the #CyberFit Partner Program. The new portal was developed to enhance partner enablement, providing easy access to the content, tools, and training that will help them build a successful cyber protection business. Given the dramatic growth of the Acronis cloud ecosystem – which has doubled since 2018, including a 30% increase in partners last year – the company wanted to revitalize its partner portal with a familiar, easy-to-use interface while providing new capabilities that help partners maximize the potential and profitability of their cyber protection portfolio. Comprehensive cyber protection “Acronis knows that our success is tied directly to the success of our partners, which is why we do all we can to accelerate their business growth. We recently introduced our flagship Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud with a no-charge licensing model to allow for incremental margins, as well as enhanced incentives for our newly announced #CyberFit Partner Program,” said Jan-Jaap “JJ” Jager, Chief Revenue Officer, Acronis. The new portal puts even more power in the hands of Acronis’ service provider “With our new partner portal, we’re making it even easier to leverage those initiatives, putting the knowledge, tools, and support needed to deliver comprehensive cyber protection at our partners’ fingertips.” Available in six languages and accessible through the existing partner portal URL, the new portal puts even more power in the hands of Acronis’ service provider, reseller, and distribution partners. Marketing automation tools Among the featured enhancements are: Easier navigation with a central dashboard that provides a partner an account overview at a glance with customizable widgets that show support cases, MDF, deal registration, renewal opportunities, and more. Partner program benefits and requirements are immediately accessible, as are special promotional offers. With an interface that mirrors the existing Acronis Management Console, access can be set based on roles and responsibilities. Enhanced marketing and sales support, including built-in marketing automation tools that streamline the ability to promote and sell, share email blasts, and offer renewals pipeline management for resellers. Partners also gain access to Acronis’ NFR Program as well. Ready-made and DIY marketing content that can be executed directly from the portal, including campaigns-in-a-box, email nurture flows, social media content, email blasts, customizable web banners, and landing pages, and more provide partners with flexible, self-service marketing opportunities. Increased support visibility for both technical and sales tickets with a new support section that streamlines case submission and provides easily tracked support tickets. Managing sales and renewals opportunities is also made easier. Specialized training from the Acronis #CyberFit Academy – including product training, technical certifications, etc. – can also be accessed directly through the new partner portal. Higher-Level partners Acronis has created a seamless and exceptional user interface with its new Partner Portal" Partners who have participated in testing the new portal agree that the new capabilities will benefit their go-to-market efforts and help them streamline their sales and marketing initiatives. “Acronis has created a seamless and exceptional user interface with its new Partner Portal. From product management to technical support, we feel more connected than ever to Acronis’ team of advisors and continue to learn how to improve our own sales experience on the new platform,” said Evangelos Tselios, Cloud Product Manager at interworks.cloud. “This outstanding development is well-organized and filled with useful content and information, truly honoring one of Acronis’ true core values of transparency. This new portal is a great example of how Acronis values its partners.” All Acronis partners immediately gain benefits through the new portal. More advanced capabilities are also available to higher-level partners through the portal. Anyone interested in seeing a demo of the new Acronis Partner Portal is encouraged to attend the launch webinar that will be taking place on Wednesday 28th April.
ProdataKey (PDK), a manufacturer of the cloud access control platform built for mobile, announces the release of seamless integration with Rhombus Systems, the pioneer in cloud-based video surveillance and asset tracking systems. In joining forces, the two companies – each known for their best-in-class cloud offerings – bring to market the industry’s easiest-to-implement, easiest-to-use, comprehensive access control, and AI-assisted video management solution. The integration is free to PDK dealers and available immediately. Facial recognition algorithms The PDK/Rhombus integration allows users of a Pdk io access control system to easily associate readers with Rhombus cameras, facilitating automated processes that simplifying monitoring while enhancing security. Video clips for all entry events are captured and indexed, and may be filtered and searched for easy investigation. PDK credentials, combined with Rhombus facial recognition algorithms, allow for highly accurate AI-powered entry verification that matches faces to credentials. Rhombus license plate recognition can be tied to garage and parking access points Real-time alerts for unauthorized access, tailgating, and persons-of-interest may be sent to system administrators, speeding up response time. Rhombus license plate recognition can be tied to the garage and parking access points, providing frictionless entry for employees while documenting visitor access. The PDK/Rhombus integrated solution requires no onsite servers and no downloaded software. Integration between the systems is accomplished in seconds via a few clicks within the software interface via phone, tablet, or web-enabled computer. Cloud-Based solution Dealers may customize trigger events and automated responses to align with customers’ security objectives. The integration is fully scalable, supporting an unlimited number of PDK and Rhombus devices. Both systems offer end-to-end encryption for enterprise-grade security. Dallan Labrum, ProdataKey’s director of sales, says, “We are extremely excited about PDK’s partnership with Rhombus. Sharing a video integration with another cloud-based solution allows our dealer partners to install more product in less time, while offering their customers a more robust, effective security solution that leverages the power of video analytics. Because both platforms are communicating through the cloud, the integration delivers an exceptionally clean user experience along with a much easier integration set-up.”
The Security Industry Association (SIA) has named Kasia Hanson as the new chair of the SIA Women in Security Forum. Hanson – Global Director for IoT partner sales for digital safety and security in multiple areas, including creating safe cities and sports and entertainment, at Intel Corporation – will lead the forum in offering programs, professional development opportunities, and networking events to support the participation of women in the security industry. Global video industry Kasia Hanson is a visionary sales executive with a history of impact in artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), data center, cloud, networking, storage solutions, cybersecurity, and software. She joined Intel in 2000, and over the past 20 years, she has delivered solutions globally for the company with multi-billion-dollar customers including Hewlett Packard and Oracle, distribution partners, the security industry, and end-users. In her current role, she drives Intel’s presence and revenue in the global video industry develops and executes partner sales acceleration initiatives, and directs ecosystem development and scale initiatives around AI and IoT, with an emphasis on computer vision and deep learning in the video industry. Several industry initiatives Hanson has served on the SIA Women in Security Forum’s education and outreach subcommittee “I am honored to lead the SIA Women in Security Forum and look forward to applying my experience in technology to the outstanding foundation that has been built over the years,” said Hanson. “Diversity of experience and inclusion of the full community of security professionals is so important, and I look forward to working with SIA to bring more women into the industry to create an amazing and safe future.” Hanson has served on the SIA Women in Security Forum’s education and outreach subcommittee since 2019. She participates in several industry initiatives to advance the use of AI and IoT in cities and sports, including the Innovation Institute for Fan Experience and the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security and served as a board member for Women of the Channel in 2017 and 2018. She also led the Economic Recovery team for Intel’s Pandemic Response Technology Initiative. Inclusive security workforce “SIA’s Women in Security Forum has made remarkable accomplishments over the last three years, and the valuable contributions of the WISF Steering Committee and Forum members like Kasia Hanson have helped make these achievements possible,” said SIA CEO Don Erickson. We applaud Kasia for her leadership and service to SIA and the industry, congratulate her on her new role" “We applaud Kasia for her leadership and service to SIA and the industry, congratulate her on her new role leading the Women in Security Forum, and look forward to partnering with her in promoting the advancement of a diverse and inclusive security workforce.” Founded in 2018, SIA’s Women in Security Forum works to engage all security professionals to promote, recruit and cultivate the leadership of women for a more inclusive and diversified industry. Bringing a diverse perspective The forum’s key efforts and activities include the SIA Progress Award, which celebrates individuals who advance opportunities and pave the way to success for women in the security industry; the SIA Women in Security Forum Scholarship, which furthers educational opportunities and promotes advancement for SIA members and student members; the forum’s Speakers Bureau, which helps SIA members bring a more diverse perspective to the security industry; charitable giving initiatives. Collaborative projects with other organizations that seek to empower women in the security and technology fields; sponsorship of the Women in Biometrics Awards, which recognize distinguished female leaders in the biometric identity and security industry; thought leadership opportunities; and engaging networking and professional growth events. The SIA Women in Security Forum is open to all employees of SIA member companies; learn more and get involved.
The three trends of 2020 - aggregation, automation, and augmentation were replaced by four mega trends in 2021 at the annual MIPS 2021 by Milestone Systems demonstrating how quickly emerging technologies are forming new trends. Close to 4000 participants from technology partners, end customers, and media attended the first virtual MIPS conference on March 1st and 2nd. The virtual event brought together this rich community of video, security, and technology solution partners from EMEA, APAC, and Americas to discuss the advancing innovation and shaping the new next. Intelligent sensors Milestone predicts a successful 2021 in EMEA for multiple reasons including the massive amount of technology at hand that has accelerated the development of new innovative solutions to help businesses and societies navigate in a post-pandemic world. They see a clear mind shift in society, and a new market perception, fueling the relevance and readiness for more intelligent sensors and video technology. The MIPS event included products and programs from pioneering brands including Axis Communications, Dell, Intel, and Lenel S2. MIPS 2021 concluded with the hope that this year will stand for new beginnings, unbelievable comebacks, and a world getting back in sync.
What would you do if, tomorrow morning, you opened your work laptop to see a ransomware demand? “Oops: Want Your Files Back? Here’s How to Pay”. It’s a pretty terrifying prospect. In that moment, IT and senior management are rushing to restore previous versions via advanced cybersecurity – or if they can’t, they’re considering paying up. As for the rest of your company’s employees, their online training modules in how to prevent a cyber-attack or create a secure password won’t help them here. With all systems down, clients still need servicing. Business continuity can’t take another hit after COVID. And who will safeguard their jobs if the company loses money? Employees are in the dark, meaning chaos isn’t far away. Emergency Mass Notification System (EMNS) 37 percent of respondents indicate implementation of an EMNS solution set up in their organizations This sounds like every manager’s worst nightmare, though surprisingly little is done to prevent confusion and disruption should an unexpected incident occur. According to the 2019 Gartner Security and Risk Management Survey, only 37 percent of respondents indicate that they have a full implementation of an Emergency Mass Notification System (EMNS) solution set up in their organizations. However, with the variety of challenges all organizations faced in 2020, devastating fires, civil unrest and of course, the pandemic, crisis managers have begun to invest in solutions beyond EMNS that help them plan, detect, respond and recover more quickly to any critical event a modern enterprise may face. Many are beginning to consider how the right technology could help mitigate any further disruption when we all return to the office but – as the ransomware, example proves – this sort of speedy, secure crisis communication isn’t just for the post-COVID season. Disruption can happen at any time, to any organization, working in any location. Critical Event Management (CEM) Organizations must choose a Critical Event Management (CEM) solution which perfectly suits the needs of their business. Crisis managers will want to consider the following four questions. Four vital questions to pinpoint the right CEM What Keeps You Awake? As a business owner, what can potentially disrupt your business operations or create a dent in your firm’s reputation? While we can develop response and recovery measures to address the threat of natural disasters or other potential man-made threats (example, active shooter incidents, building fire emergencies, etc.), there may be other potential risks we may not have planned for. In this instance, the first probable response is to reach out to your most important stakeholders, provide assurance or instructions, and seek acknowledgment from your stakeholders as part of your communications strategy. Being able to account for your team members will then allow you to better size up your next best response to a critical event, collectively. Who Regulates You? Businesses operating in specific sectors may be subjected to regulatory requirements. For example, organizations operating critical information infrastructures (CIIs) may be expected to report cybersecurity incidents within a specified timeframe to “sector regulators”, with relevant details that should include the extent or progress of containment and resolution. The expectation is not only confined to the speed of escalation and reporting to the regulator(s), but there is pressure within the organization’s IT or cybersecurity team(s) to provide a complete situational picture of the incident while facilitating swift resolution. Given the nature of such a threat, business leaders will be taking an unnecessary risk by relying solely on email and SMS communications. Instead, a secured platform that can support the entire incident response lifecycle via a common operating picture through automated alerting and collaboration with relevant stakeholders would be a better option. Who Are You Responsible For? When a critical event has the potential to result in the loss of lives (or any near equivalent), companies have an expected duty of care to their staff and other concerned stakeholders. This should not be confused with accounting for only those operating in the physical premises, but anyone who is contracted by the company needs to be accounted for (yes, remote workers and outsourced service vendors should be included). Businesses still relying on the manual call tree system will experience the excruciating pain of reaching out to staff one by one or must wait for the “next identified tier leader” to reply. Instead, communications platform that can quickly push out alerts, record acknowledgments and facilitates critical information sharing with first responders can significantly reduce response and recovery time. Does Anyone Need to Know? When a critical event occurs (or is about to occur), do the senior management team or Board members need to receive first-hand information? How about other staff and essential vendors within the company? Relying on emails and SMS alone can be problematic, particularly when critical events occur in the middle of the night or on a holiday weekend. If critical events require authorization for certain responses to proceed, surely it should not wait till the next morning. To mitigate this risk, a reliable and robust CEM platform with the ability to provide deliver assurance and secure two-way communication should be considered to ensure prompt dissemination and response. What’s non-negotiable in a CEM platform? Should be able to manage last minute ‘live’ critical plan changes on an accessible and secured platformWhichever CEM solution crisis managers choose, it should be able to manage last minute ‘live’ critical plan changes on an accessible and secured platform. A disruptive event is always in flux, and as such, any technology must be able to quickly communicate the latest plans from leadership teams. The platform should also enable swift notification in the event of activation; provide a means of accountability tracking; facilitates critical information gathering and management from operational and tactical response teams; and, most importantly, enable collaboration between all those who have a stake in keeping the business operating smoothly. Security standards These tactics are nothing without a secure platform. If it can be hacked, the reliability of all information transferred through its network is cast into doubt. Each platform should have industry-recognized security standards and demonstrate resilience to hack attempts. Many now have a managed services team behind them, able to provide trusted assistance whenever an emergency happens. Chaos arises not from the source of business disruption, but from the panicked reactions of teams. With CEM platforms, calm can be restored among all stakeholders while a solution is found, dramatically reducing the impact of the event on the day-to-day operations of the business.
The global pandemic has created a working environment filled with uncertainty and, at times, fear, as COVID-19 cases surge yet again and businesses continue to navigate a complex web of infectious disease mitigation protocols and managing the distribution of a potential vaccine. Organizations are operating in an environment where a critical event, posing significant risk to its employees and daily operations, could occur at any moment. Even with a vaccine showing light at the end of a very dark tunnel, the pandemic unfortunately may be far from over, and the communication of accurate public health information to a widely distributed, often remote workforce is vital to keeping employees safe and businesses running. Organizations that plan ahead, invest in an emergency management system and share key updates quickly, reliably and securely, can keep employees safe while ensuring business continuity when it matters most. Taking time to plan and prepare Throughout the pandemic, U.S. offices have gone through alternating stages of reopening and re-closing Throughout the pandemic, U.S. offices have gone through alternating stages of reopening and re-closing. However, whether businesses are operating at a limited or full capacity, medical experts are expecting continuous waves of COVID-19 cases, as community transmission continues to hit record highs. The only way for businesses to keep their employees and customers safe, protect their operations, and retain trust with their key stakeholders during these tumultuous times is to be proactive in nature. Organizations need to put a business resiliency plan in place now that outlines key actions to take if (or when) an issue relating to local spread of the novel coronavirus arises. By having a plan in place and practicing it regularly, organizations can minimize risks and maximize employee safety surrounding critical events, such as suspected or confirmed exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace. Context of emergency management Ensuring the safety of employees (and others within the company’s facilities) needs to be the number one priority for organizations; and in any crisis scenario, a prepared and practiced plan maximizes a company’s chances of success. In PwC's 2019 Global Crisis Survey, business leaders across a range of industries shared their experiences, expectations, and top strengths and weaknesses in the context of emergency management. By a wide margin (54% vs. 30%), organizations that had a crisis response plan in place fared better post-crisis than those who didn’t. When it comes to ensuring the wellbeing of staff, businesses need to think through a comprehensive, iterative infectious disease mitigation and operational continuity strategy and practice it as often as possible. Investing in proper technology A vital step in adequate critical event management planning is investing in the proper technology infrastructure For today’s modern organization, a vital step in adequate critical event management planning is investing in the proper technology infrastructure to streamline the communication of vital information. Organizations should explore risk intelligence, critical communication and incident management software to keep their people safe, informed, and connected during critical events - and, thankfully, decision-makers are starting to take note. The Business Continuity Institute 2020 Emergency Communications Report found that 67% of organizations at least use emergency notification and/or crisis management tools. Reliable risk intelligence system Building upon that trend, a reliable risk intelligence system can anticipate and analyze the potential impact of incidents, such as increases in local cases of COVID-19, send vital updates to a distributed workforce of any size on multiple devices regarding infectious disease mitigation protocols and public health directives, and then help incident response teams virtually collaborate while maintaining compliance standards. Automating as much of this process as possible through technology allows human decision makers to efficiently and effectively focus their time, effort and expertise on what matters most in a crisis situation - implementing sound operational continuity strategies and, more importantly, ensuring employees’ safety and well-being are prioritized and appropriately considered when stress rises. Communicating vital updates This is the cultural component of incident management based on emotional intelligence, empathy, effective employee engagement, and authentic listening that makes or breaks an organization’s response to challenging situations. Employees must be aware at a moment’s notice to stay away from or exit contaminated areas If employees are exposed in the workplace to a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, employers must be prepared to quickly update staff on vital next steps, as outlined by the CDC and other public health authorities, and arm key functions - such as security operations, HR, facility management, legal and compliance - with the information they need to mitigate potential spread of the virus, including: Closing/cleaning the office: Employees must be aware at a moment’s notice to stay away from or exit contaminated areas. From there, it is critical that businesses communicate clearly with cleaning staff to follow procedure, use the right disinfecting products and sanitise high-touch surfaces. Alerting key groups that may have been exposed: Employers have a duty to rapidly notify workers of potential exposure to COVID-19. Having the proper communication infrastructure in place can streamline contact-tracing as well as the subsequent testing process, and save vital time. Ensuring work-from-home continuity or diverting workflows to alternative physical environments: Every work environment looks different today. Whether an organization is managing a distributed workforce, full-capacity essential workers or something in between, there needs be a communication system in place to ensure business continuity. Outlining next steps for reopening: After a potential exposure, employees require the proper reassurance that they will be returning to a safe working environment in an organized, thoughtful manner, which is aligned to public health best practices. Whether it is coordinating a limited capacity return to the office or outlining new infectious disease mitigation protocols - such as steps for receiving a vaccine in the coming months - employees must continue to be updated quickly, comprehensively, and often. Incident management technology There is no doubt that organizations will continue to face a myriad of challenges as they navigate business operations during the pandemic into 2021, as the general public awaits the broad deployment of a vaccine. Public and private sector leaders still have months ahead of them before daily operations even begin to resemble “business as usual.” To best prepare for the next chapter of the global pandemic, organizations should outline a plan tailored to infectious disease mitigation protocols; explore augmenting their crisis management policies with risk intelligence, crisis management and incident management technology; and focus employee communications on containing and rapidly resolving events associated with COVID-19 exposure. Keeping employees safe, informed, and connected during critical events are mandatory considerations for leaders as they analyze existential threats to their business in 2021 and beyond.
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.
An impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been to accelerate change. In 2020, the security industry was among many others that sought to adapt to shifting norms. In the process, we grabbed onto new opportunities for change and, in many cases, re-evaluated how we have done business for decades. If necessity is the mother of invention, perhaps crisis is the mother of acceleration. This article will reflect on how these themes impacted the physical security industry in 2020, based on content we published throughout the year, and with links back to the original articles. Sensitive data leakage Since the lockdown came into effect, organizations globally have undergone years' worth of transformations in a matter of months. Whether it has been to transition their operations online or moving their IT infrastructure to the cloud, there’s no denying that the face of business has changed permanently, experiencing a seismic shift, both operationally and culturally. As we enter the ‘next normal’ there remains a great deal of uncertainty around what the next 12 months holds and how organizations can navigate turbulence in the face of a possible recession. One of the most notable and widely reported trends has been the switch to remote methods of work, or home working. With so many employees logging on from residential networks, through personal devices that may be more easily compromised, the overall attack surface has greatly increased, raising the risk of potential corporate and sensitive data leakage in their new home office settings. Security and data protection are larger issues than ever. Good cybersecurity hygiene Criminals will use the crisis to scam people for money, account information and more" With a majority of the world working from home, businesses had to respond to this changing landscape. While it used to be that in-person networking events and sales pitches secured new projects or opportunities, the current landscape pushes businesses to be more creative in how they reach their customers. For example, with ISC West being postponed, many companies have turned to online resources to share new product demonstrations and other company news. Others are hosting webinars as a way to discuss the current climate and what it means for the industry. Without the proper precautions, working from home could become a cybersecurity nightmare, says Purdue University professor Marcus Rogers. “Criminals will use the crisis to scam people for money, account information and more,” he says. “With more people working from home, people need to make sure they are practicing good cybersecurity hygiene, just like they would at work. There is also a big risk that infrastructures will become overwhelmed, resulting in communication outages, both internet and cell.” Work-Life balance In a typical office with an on-premise data center, the IT department has complete control over network access, internal networks, data, and applications. The remote worker, on the other hand, is mobile. He or she can work from anywhere using a VPN. Until just recently this will have been from somewhere like a local coffee shop, possibly using a wireless network to access the company network and essential applications. There are many benefits of working remotely with productivity right up the top of the list There are many benefits of working remotely with productivity right up the top of the list. By reducing the unproductive time spent commuting and traveling to meetings, we are able to get much more done in a day. Add to this the reduction in stress and improved work-life balance and it makes for an impressive formula of happier, healthier and more motivated colleagues. And it’s still easy to measure results no matter where someone is working. Video conferencing platforms 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. 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. Some of these sessions have been incredibly informative – and conveniently accessible from the comfort of a home office. Online training courses Online training has grown in popularity this year, and the change may become permanent Online training has grown in popularity this year, and the change may become permanent. “We have seen unprecedented international demand for our portfolio of online training courses ranging from small installation companies to the largest organizations, across a wide range of sectors,” says Jerry Alfandari, Group Marketing Manager of Linx International Group, a UK training firm. “More than ever, businesses are looking to ensure they have the skills in-house to coordinate their response to the changing situation. Individuals are also taking this time to upskill themselves for when we return to ‘normal’ by bringing something with them they didn’t have before. Perhaps unsurprisingly, people are still seeking to better themselves for what will be, eventually, a competitive market.” Virtual trade show ‘Crisis and the Everyday’ was part of Genetec’s Connect’DX virtual trade show last spring. The virtual conversation – emphasizing both in form and content the topsy-turvy state of the world – included interesting insights on the current pandemic and its near- and long-term impact on the industry. In the middle of this pandemic, there is an opportunity to help security reinvent itself “In the middle of this pandemic, there is an opportunity to help security reinvent itself,” said Brad Brekke, Principal, The Brekke Group, one of the panelists. “Amid the business disruption, we should ask ‘what’s the new playbook?’ It’s an opportunity for security to look at ourselves now and look at a business plan of what the future might look like. We need to align with the business model of the corporation and define our role more around business and not so much around security.” Cloud-Based platform As a cloud-based platform for service providers in the security, smart home and smart business markets, Alarm.com 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.
Arteco’s VCA video analytics system is their latest new product, signaling a move from machine vision-based analytics to deep learning video analytics. A server – separate from the Arteco video management system (VMS) – manages the algorithms for the analytics. Arteco has been field-testing the product for a year and a half and had planned to launch it officially at ISC West in March (which was postponed). In lieu of the trade show launch, the company has been presenting the product (along with partners) through a series of webinars. The deep learning video analytics product operates out of the box – “just turn it on,” says Steve Birkmeier, Arteco VP of Sales. Functionality is based on “training” of pre-classified objects, such as differentiating between a person, an animal, a vehicle, or just clutter. The deep learning library focuses on people and vehicles. Detection and identification The new system detects everything in the field of view The new system detects everything in the field of view and only identifies what the operator is looking for, thus reducing false alarms. Any identified object is provided with an accuracy reading (e.g., 92% confident it is a human.) The system can be set up from the graphical user interface (GUI). Arteco VCA (video content analysis) also uses analytics rules, such as “if A+B=C, then do D.” Therefore, an abandoned object may elicit a different response than a violated area. With roots in the industrial automation market of the early-2000s, Arteco offers an event-based video management system (VMS) platform. That is, their emphasis is on identifying and providing video at the moment something happens rather than managing a vast amount of video that shows, in effect, nothing of interest. Arteco’s system, providing functionality expected in a full-featured VMS, is designed around the need to react to exceptions and events. Video verification “We can pull in events from any type of system and provide the related video,” says Steve Birkmeier, Arteco VP of Sales. “It can be access control, fire, intrusion, perimeter security, radar or microwave barriers, vape sensors, license plate recognition, or whatever.” An open connector, xml framework enables Arteco to interface with other systems and provide video verification of events. In addition to a focus on event-based video, Arteco also emphasizes ease of use, building on their 20-year history with video analytics. Another point of differentiation is their open architecture that easily and repeatably enables incorporation of third-party “events.” Finally, Arteco’s systems are competitively priced (less expensive), including flexible pricing and licensing structure to maximize value for a customer. In addition to security, there are multiple operational applications that use video verification In addition to security, there are multiple operational applications that use video verification. For example, integration with warehouse management software using metadata from warehouse surveillance video can provide a searchable database. An operator can enter a purchase order number, for instance, and the system provides video associated with that sale. The role of video in physical security Arteco has traditionally been a strong player in the utilities vertical, where event-based video management is useful to keep watch on high-value assets located in remote areas with little physical security. Another strong vertical is car dealerships in the United States, including security and loss prevention applications as well as integration with fleet management (using RFID and/or license plate reading). Arteco’s heat mapping capabilities can help a car dealer analyze customer activity to guide merchandising decisions, in the same way a retail store might. Big-box stores are another application for Arteco’s combination of marketing analytics, security and loss prevention. Arteco’s strength is also proving useful in the emerging, highly regulated cannabis industry. State regulations require that each marijuana plant be tagged, and systems are required to provide total chain of custody records from “seed to sale.” In the case of Arteco, video associated with a specific plant tag is available at each stage of growth, production and sale. Coronavirus and video management The analytics can detect when people are grouped together closer than 2 meters As an Italian company, Arteco has already applied its deep-learning VCA product at city centers in Italy, which was hard hit by the novel coronavirus. The analytics can detect when people are grouped together closer than 2 meters, for example, and can provide an alarm if social distancing requirements related to the coronavirus are not being observed. The system can also detect and confirm the use of face masks at an entrance. Tracking that number – the percentage of customers who comply – in real time might offer additional peace of mind for high-risk customers entering a store, for example. Birkmeier contends the world has been changed forever by the pandemic, although acceptance over time of new technologies being introduced will vary greatly by geographic location. Already, in the last decade or so, acceptance of video surveillance has been greater, even in the U.S. market, he says. ”More often you hear ‘why don’t you have cameras’ rather than ‘I don’t like these camera here,’” he comments.
ISC West is being affected only minimally by the COVID-19 coronavirus, which is having an impact on international business travel, specifically to and from China. One consequence of coronavirus travel restrictions is a decision by Reed Exhibitions International not to proceed with a dedicated pavilion for Chinese companies at ISC West, March 17-20. In the main hall, however, some Chinese companies will remain in the show and staff their exhibit booths with U.S. office personnel and resources. Importantly, the ISC West event is moving forward as planned. Several trade show organizers globally have canceled events because of fears of spreading the disease. For example, the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona was canceled at the end of February. “Our clear focus is on the health and safety for our entire ISC community, and empathy and compassion for our Chinese customers relative to personal health and safety, and the very challenging business predicament for these companies,” says Will Wise, Group Vice President, Security & Gaming Portfolio, Reed Exhibitions. Minimal Impact Our clear focus is on the health and safety for our entire ISC community, and empathy and compassion for our Chinese customersThe ISC West team and Reed Exhibitions International colleagues in China have been working diligently to assess the status of all ISC West exhibitors from China, given the travel restriction, says Wise. Among show attendees, Chinese travel restrictions will have a negligible impact. In past years, only a tiny fraction of attendees traveled to Las Vegas from China for the show. Immediate action by the U.S. government as soon as the world became aware of the COVID-19 coronavirus has enabled a controlled business and health and safety dynamic that will allow the show to proceed as planned. The U.S. took quick action to put major travel restrictions in place, including no incoming flights/travel from China. “The status is ever-evolving and we’ll be keeping the expo floor plan updated,” says Wise. The China pavilion In previous years, the China pavilion had hosted 50 or more companies as part of what was formerly known as “Global Expo,” located in the Venetian Ballroom adjacent to the Sands Convention Center. In 2019, the slate of companies in the Venetian Ballroom expanded to include some domestic exhibitors as well as the international companies. Importantly, the ISC West event is moving forward as plannedThis year, Venetian Ballroom exhibits will continue without the participation of Chinese companies. There will be international exhibitors from countries outside China as well as some domestic companies, including the Emerging Technology Zone, where new startups will highlight their latest innovations. The Security Industry Association (SIA) New Product Showcase will also be featured in the Venetian Ballroom, as well as a VIP international lounge. Additionally, a new pavilion highlighting Loss Prevention and Supply Chain companies will be featured, and there will be an educational theater offering free sessions on topics such as drones and robotics. Reed Exhibitions strongly urges exhibitors and visitors to refer to the guidelines and protocols as suggested by the World Health Organization and local /national public health authorities to contain and mitigate against any further spread of the virus. Suggested precautions include frequent hand washing (including alcohol-based hand rubs) and maintaining a three-foot distance between oneself and other people, particularly those who are coughing, sneezing and have a fever.
Contracts for two additional COSMO-SKyMed Second Generation (CSG) satellites have been signed with the Italian Space Agency (ASI) and the Italian Ministry of Defense. Satellites 3 and 4 will complete the second generation of the Italian earth observation program, ensuring continuity and high performance of the planet's monitoring services. Continuous technological research Alessandro Profumo, Leonardo CEO commented: “COSMO-SkyMed is one of Italy’s great success stories, a driver of technological research, new applications, industrial competitiveness and employment, as well as fundamental infrastructure for the protection and security of Italy and Europe.” As Leonardo, we are proud of the contribution provided in all phases of the COSMO-SkyMed program" “Thanks to the capabilities demonstrated in the management of emergency situations linked to sudden events, the systems potential in terms of reliability, precision and flexibility are known internationally. In addition, its capabilities are now further enhanced by the second generation, with continuous technological research. As Leonardo, we are proud of the contribution provided in all phases of the COSMO-SkyMed program, a role that gives us credibility and prestige with our customers all over the world.” SAR satellite system COSMO-SkyMed is an Earth observation satellite system of ASI and the Ministry of Defense, a flagship of Italian technology and innovation, built by Leonardo and its joint ventures Thales Alenia Space and Telespazio. It is a dual-use constellation, with SAR ‘eyes’ (Synthetic Aperture Radar) capable of monitoring the phenomena of the Earth in any weather condition. COSMO-SkyMed has changed the way of observing the planet, ensuring fundamental information for the security and the understanding of phenomena that affect everyday life. With the innovative updates built into the second generation COSMO-SkyMed is the first SAR satellite system in the world capable of simultaneously acquiring two images of two areas hundreds of kilometers apart and thus serving two requests that would have been in conflict for any other satellite system. Medium-Sized enterprises COSMO-SkyMed images are used to support populations affected by natural disasters such as earthquakes and fires, but also for the control of cultural and artistic heritage, of critical infrastructures, for monitoring the receding of glaciers, that of oil spills in the seas and for the optimization of agricultural techniques. The constellation will be completed with the additional two satellites just announced which will join the first two The first Second Generation satellite was launched a year ago. The second satellite will be launched on a VEGA-C launcher. The constellation will be completed with the additional two satellites just announced which will join the first two. The COSMO-SkyMed system, of the Italian Space Agency and the Ministry of Defense, is the result and expression of the best skills of the Italian space industry, with Leonardo and its joint ventures Thales Alenia Space and Telespazio, assisted by a significant number of small and medium-sized enterprises. Providing star trackers In particular, Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), is responsible for the entire radar system and satellites, while Telespazio, a joint venture between Leonardo (67%) and Thales (33%), is responsible of the ground segment and hosts the command and control center of the constellation at the Fucino Space Center. Leonardo also contributes to the program by providing the star trackers (A-STR) for the orientation of the satellite, photovoltaic panels (PVA) and electronic units for the management of the electrical power. The first generation has four satellites launched between 2007 and 2010, while the first satellite of the new generation was launched in December 2019. The COSMO-SkyMed constellation is able to acquire up to 1800 images per day that Leonardo, through e-GEOS (Telespazio 80%, ASI 20%) receives, processes and markets all over the world.
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.”
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.”
Genetec Inc., a technology provider of unified security, public safety, operations, and business intelligence solutions, announces that the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, an iconic amusement park in California, has recently upgraded its security infrastructure with the Security Center platform. By unifying video and access control park-wide, the park’s security team is able to speed up investigations and emergency response. Touted as the ‘Coney Island of the West’, the seaside park features about 40 rides, 30 restaurants, 15 retail shops, arcades, miniature golf, bowling, and conference and banquet facilities. Video surveillance technology As an admission-free park, guests can enter through multiple entrances to buy food, purchase ride tickets, or simply walk around and enjoy the surroundings. Unlike gated parks which typically have a main security checkpoint, the park’s security team must be hyper-vigilant to spot potential security threats before they can develop. Security operators constantly monitor video cameras and work directly with field officers to handle issues. While video surveillance technology helped security teams watch over the large park, aging equipment began compromising their efficiency. As the search for a new video management system began, the team prioritized openness, reliability, and a vendor’s reputation in the market. Moreover, their aging access control system would soon need replacing too. Actively monitoring cameras The team at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk uses the Security Center platform to manage over 400 cameras and 220 doors The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk team chose the Genetec Security Center platform because of its unique ability to unify video surveillance, access control, and other systems and sensors. The flexibility of the platform was a key selling point and enabled them to choose their preferred cameras and door hardware. Today, the team at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk uses the Security Center platform to manage over 400 cameras and 220 doors across the entire amusement park. From one single interface, operators actively monitor cameras and doors, respond to alarms, handle investigations, and export and share video evidence. This ensures that every security incident is effectively resolved without having to switch applications. Video surveillance system “Like any busy amusement park, our guests sometimes become separated from their groups. When this happens, we are now able to use the Security Center Omnicast™ video surveillance system, along with assistance from our field officers, to quickly reunite guests with their parties,” said Will Graham, Security Technology Administrator at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. If motion is detected near a perimeter after opening hours, the platform will trigger an alarm and display live video and a 10-second replay of the event on a dispatcher’s monitor. This allows them to quickly identify if it’s an actual threat. Unique access privileges The team has also expedited investigations by sharing system access with other departments. This includes food service, loss prevention and ticket sales who can handle their own preliminary investigations, if needed. The team has set up different door schedules and rules and created over 200 cardholder groups “Using the Security Center platform, all door events are linked to video which means our team can quickly gather the information needed and solve cases faster,” said Graham. With Security Center, operators get an instant view of an event as it’s unfolding. So before sending an officer to check on the area, they can quickly identify if it’s a threat or a false alarm. Using the Synergis system, the team has set up different door schedules and rules and created over 200 cardholder groups with unique access privileges for various roles and responsibilities. Managed software maintenance For added peace-of-mind, the Santa Cruz Boardwalk team receives fully managed software maintenance and monitoring via the Genetec Advantage maintenance package to help ensure their systems always available and up to date. “Using Security Center has definitely heightened our response efficiency at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Everything from video surveillance and access control to alarm management has been consolidated into one solution—it’s just a better, more effective way to work. And we’re confident that with this unified platform, we’ll be keeping our guests happy and safe well into the future,” concluded Graham.
JEWISH CARE has placed its trust in the latest access control, door entry and CCTV technology, to help create a safe and secure environment for residents living in Anita Dorfman House, a new 64-bed care home facility recently erected at its Sandringham care and community hub in Stanmore. Phase 1 of the project has seen the MEPH contractor Harvey Group, award a contract to South London system integrator WLS, to install a Paxton Net2 access control and door entry system with the objective of ensuring that JEWISH CARE has strict control as to who is able to enter the accommodation block or gain access to its sensitive areas. Home management control Paxton proximity card readers and door entry panels have been installed at the new care home’s 5 entrances which, together with 55 door entry handsets deployed throughout the building, allow JEWISH CARE reception and security personnel monitor all access control events. They are able to do so with the help of Paxton’s user-friendly Net2 software platform run on a desktop PC. WLS has also installed over 60 high definition 4-megapixel network dome cameras manufactured by Dahua at carefully chosen locations both within and around the building, to help detect intruders, as well as visually verify access control activity. In addition, automated barriers will shortly be installed at the site’s entrance. Linked to the CCTV system and triggered by Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) analytics, the barriers help care home management control vehicle access to the site. Smooth implementation of the access control JEWISH CARE is the largest health and social care organization serving the Jewish community in London With over 70 centers and services touching the lives of 10,000 people every week, JEWISH CARE is the largest health and social care organization serving the Jewish community in London and the South East. “We go to great lengths to ensure our clients feel safe and this is particularly important as many of them have disabilities, mental health needs or live with dementia,” said Lindsay Long, Facilities Manager at JEWISH CARE. “Investing in the latest generation of access control, door entry and CCTV solutions was therefore considered to be an essential requirement and we have been delighted with how Harvey Group, WLS and the various manufacturers involved in the project, have worked closely together to ensure a smooth implementation of the access control, door entry and CCTV systems.” Stopping unwanted visitors “The combined solution is enabling us to deter and stop any unwanted visitors from entering the building, as well as track and record people as they move around the building, without causing any inconvenience or disruption to colleagues, clients and genuine visitors.” A second phase of the project which is due to be completed by the end of 2020, will see WLS expand the security systems to cover the care home’s new independent living and communal facilities. As was the case during phase 1, WLS has also been tasked to install a TRIAX satellite TV system throughout new facilities, to enable to clients watch British and Israeli TV.
Staff safety and customer service will be boosted across Sydney’s rail network with the deployment of SafeZone®, the safety, security and emergency management solution from CriticalArc. The ground-breaking technology will enable Sydney Trains to manage a wide range of situations, including mitigating risks to staff and customers and strengthening the capacity to respond to incidents and emergencies across the network. For example, SafeZone will put up to 2,500 of Sydney Trains’ front-line staff directly in touch with security control room teams, letting them summon immediate assistance at the touch of a button. High safety standards The investment in SafeZone will cover over 175 stations across the greater Sydney area and is the latest step in a modernization drive to transform Sydney Trains’ operations, with more than a million customer journeys taken on the network every weekday. SafeZone enables staff to call for assistance and receive optimized response at the touch of a button, via their assigned smartphone. This capability is as valuable on crowded city platforms at rush-hour as it is on more remote suburban stations where staff may be working alone late at night. “Sydney Trains is committed to fulfilling our duty of care to all of our staff and enhancing our high safety standards in order to maintain and enrich customer service levels on station platforms,” explains Mark Edmonds, Manager of Security Capability, Network Operations. Real-time situational awareness Sydney Trains will now have real-time situational awareness, and a more complete picture of critical events “Employing proven technology such as SafeZone will help us solve day-to-day challenges, further improving the safety of our staff and helping them work more effectively to continue to deliver world-class service.” Across its transportation network, Sydney Trains will now have real-time situational awareness, and a more complete picture of critical events. This makes possible a wide range of security management functions, such as sending targeted alerts to specific individuals and groups. It enables control room operators to pinpoint the location of individuals needing help so they can initiate the most efficient and rapid emergency response. Primary safety concern “This visionary deployment by Sydney Trains will have a significant impact on the safety and wellbeing of staff and thus will produce dividends with regards to customer service and satisfaction, and the potential for streamlined operations moving forward,” says Glenn Farrant, CEO, CriticalArc. “With staff safety a primary concern for all rail operators internationally, implementation of this technology by Sydney Trains represents a significant step forward for the sector and will be the blueprint for many implementations to follow.”
Round table discussion
It has been two years or so since the last ISC West trade show, the biggest security show in the U.S. market. The coronavirus pandemic has caused a year’s worth of trade show cancellations, and the trend will continue for a while longer. The absence of trade shows has been transformative for the security marketplace, among others, as companies implemented a variety of alternative approaches, with mixed results. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What impact has the cancellation of trade shows had on the security industry?
Artificial intelligence is on the verge of changing the face of multiple industries – from healthcare to entertainment to finance, from data security to manufacturing to the cars we drive (or that will drive themselves!) In the physical security market, AI has garnered a lot of attention as a buzzword and as a harbinger of things to come. We asked this week's Expert Panel Roundtable: What security markets are most likely to embrace artificial intelligence (AI)?
The ability to treat patients in a secure environment is a base requirement of hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Whether facilities are large or small, security challenges abound, including perimeter security, access control of sensitive areas, video surveillance, and even a long list of cyber-risks. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the security challenges of hospitals and the healthcare industry?
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