Home Security Systems
Iris ID Systems Inc., a globally renowned iris recognition-based identity authentication solutions provider, has announced that it has entered into a global partnership with Remo+ (Olive and Dove Company) for smart home and IoT devices. Iris ID – Remo+ partnership This partnership will broaden the accessibility of home video security and IoT solutions for the global market and enable Iris ID to introduce new products which complement and expand the capabilities of its existing markets....
Check Point® Software Technologies Ltd., a provider of cyber security solutions globally, announces the acquisition of a new cloud-based technology that delivers secure remote access created by Odo Security. This technology will integrate with Check Point´s Infinity architecture, and become the easiest and most secure solution for enterprises need to enable employees´ secure remote access to any application. The COVID-19 pandemic has driven enterprise adoption of mass remote wor...
2N, a global provider of IP access control systems, introduces its new 2N Indoor View answering unit for accepting video calls from 2N IP intercoms, making the whole intercom experience more stylish in the luxury apartments. The 2N Indoor View answering unit is equipped with a 7” color touchscreen display, providing a detailed view of incoming people from its scratch resistant 4-mm tempered glass panel. Users can easily and quickly display live video from the intercom and see who is at th...
Security Equipment Supply (SES), the Midwest-based security distributor, said that the new premium architectural speaker brand Adept Audio is in stock at St Louis, Detroit, Chicago, Memphis, Omaha and Dallas. This includes the complete assortment of Adept in-ceiling, in-wall, indoor-outdoor cabinet speakers and digital subwoofers. In Q4, the remaining seven SES branches will be stocking Adept. “SES is very excited about this new loudspeaker brand,” said John Hill, Director of Sales...
Pyronix is delighted to announce the launch of its brand-new heat detector, the HEAT-WE. Part of the ever-expanding life safety range, the thermistor-based detector adds yet another option to installations; protecting properties, families and delivering even greater peace of mind. “Recognizing that security is consistently developing, we’re delighted to expand our life safety range with the HEAT-WE,” Laurence Kenny, Pyronix Marketing Manager, said. Wireless heat sensor...
NAPCO Security Technologies is pleased to announce a new option for its increasingly popular iBridge Video Pro Doorbell. iBridge Video Doorbell Ideal for dealers looking to compete with DIY products with a professional-grade offering, this RMR-generating convenience for any account connects with true-2-way voice using either the standalone video app or integrated with iSecure Connected Home & Security System, iBridge Connected Home app & the multi-function iBridge 7 security/video/smar...
The Security Industry Association (SIA) has announced the 2020 winners of the SIA New Product Showcase Awards, the flagship awards program in partnership with ISC West recognizing innovative security products, services and solutions. Top among the winners – who were recognized July 9 during a virtual awards show – was Leica Geosystems, part of Hexagon, receiving the 2020 Best New Product Award. Since its inception in 1979, the SIA New Product Showcase has been the security industry’s premier product awards program. New products are reviewed by a panel of judges with extensive industry experience, and in 2020, following significant deliberations, the 30 judges presented awards for technologies covering 23 product and service categories. Leica Geosystems, part of Hexagon, received the Best New Product honor for its 3D Surveillance with Leica BLK247, submitted in the Emerging Technologies category. Building security The 3D Surveillance with Leica BLK247 is “a first-of-its-kind reality capture sensor for building security and operations,” said Leica Geosystems. “It is the latest product in the company’s BLK product line, a collection of reality capture, scanning and photogrammetry hardware and software. The BLK247 offers continuous, 24/7 LiDAR-based 3D monitoring and change detection within spaces. It does this using LiDAR, 3D digital fencing and continuous scanning to monitor buildings and spaces 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.” The prestigious Judges’ Choice Award was presented to Suprema Inc. for the Airfob Patch product, submitted in the Access Control Devices & Peripherals Hardware – Wireless category. “Airfob Patch is the world’s first mobile-to-RF-card signal translator, enabling mobile phones to communicate with the existing RF card readers,” said Suprema Inc. “Wire, batteries nor construction is required for installation. Airfob Patch charges itself by using the existing RF field signals transmitted from the RF reader. It transforms the RF fields into its own power source.” New Product Showcase Merit Award SIA is proud to present John Spooner with the 2020 SIA New Product Showcase Merit Award" Additionally, John Spooner – executive vice president at Alarm Detection Systems and an active volunteer judge in the SIA New Product Showcase program. Spooner received the New Product Showcase Merit Award, which recognizes an individual or company who, through their support of the New Product Showcase, demonstrates a commitment to the vision and mission of the program, contributes to its success and promotes the advancement of SIA and the security industry overall. “SIA is proud to present John Spooner with the 2020 SIA New Product Showcase Merit Award; John has not missed a single SIA New Product Showcase event since he began as an active volunteer judge in the program 17 years ago,” said Chris Grniet, chair of the SIA New Product Showcase Committee. “He has always been a fair and honest participant and has never hesitated to jump in and help whenever we need him. He has been exemplary in his commitment, participation and ability to help the group reach consensus.” Services and contributions “Following hours of panel-driven judging and technology demonstrations, SIA is thrilled to recognize the 2020 winners of the SIA New Product Showcase Awards for their innovative products, services and contributions representing the best new offerings in the market,” said SIA CEO Don Erickson. “SIA applauds all the honourees who received awards in 2020 and particularly Leica Geosystems and Suprema Inc. for standing out in this highly competitive field of entrants to earn the Best New Product and Judges’ Choice distinctions. Additionally, we congratulate John Spooner on receiving the 2020 New Product Showcase Merit Award in recognition of his many valuable contributions to this premier program.” Award winners The 2020 SIA New Product Showcase winners are: Best New Product Award Winner – Leica Geosystems, Part of Hexagon: 3D Surveillance with Leica BLK247 Judges’ Choice Award Winner – Suprema Inc.: Airfob Patch New Product Showcase Merit Award Winner – John Spooner, executive vice president, Alarm Detection Systems Category Awards Access Control Devices & Peripherals Hardware – Wireless Winner – dormakaba: BEST Switch™ Tech Access Control Software, Hardware, Devices & Peripherals – Wired Winner – Swiftlane: Swiftlane Access Control Honorable Mention – Altronix Corporation: Tango Anti-Terrorism/Force Protection and Biometrics Winner – Gibraltar Perimeter Security: G-1441 Ultra-Shallow Bollard Winner – IDEMIA: VisionPass Commercial Monitoring Solutions Winner – IronYun Inc.: AI NVR Edge Analytics Communications and Networking Solutions Winner – Axis Communications, Inc.: AXIS C8210 Network Audio Amplifier Convergence and Integration Solutions Winner – Blue Light: Blue Fusion Design, Diagnostic and Installation Tools Winner – Alarm.com: On-Site Wrap Up Emergency Communication Systems Winner – Verint: NowForce Emerging Technologies Winner – BioConnect: BioConnect’s Unified Mobile Access Solution Winner – IPVideo Corporation: HALO IOT Smart Sensor 2.0 Fire/Life Safety Winner – Kidde: Kidde Optica Smoke Detectors Hosted Solutions/Managed Services Winner – SiteOwl: SiteOwl Intrusion Detection and Prevention Solutions (Physical) – Wireless Winner – Alula: Slimline Touchpad Honorable Mention – Cartell: CW-SYS Wireless Driveway System Lock and Key Solutions Winner –Medeco: All Weather Padlock Honorable Mention – Abloy Oy: ABLOY® BEAT Mobile Solutions (Connected) Winner – CloudScann: Visual Intelligence Control Center (VICC) With VisualC3 Mobile Honorable Mention: Rapid Response Monitoring: rapidSMS Smart Home Solutions Winner – Alarm.com/Building36: Smart Water Valve+Meter Threat/Risk Management Software Applications Winner – Splan Inc.: SIVI™ – Splan Intelligent Visitor Insights Video Surveillance Advanced Imaging Technologies Winner – Axis Communications, Inc.: AXIS Live Privacy Shield Video Surveillance Cameras (HD/Megapixel) Winner – Bosch Security and Safety Systems: MIC IP Ultra 7100i Honorable Mention – Hanwha Techwin: PNM-9085RQZ Video Surveillance Data Storage Winner – Dragonfruit AI: Dragonfruit LiveArchive Video Surveillance Hardware and Accessories Winner – EIZO Inc.: FDF2711W-IP Video Surveillance Management Systems Winner – Airship Industries, Inc.: Airship EMS v5.4.5 During the 2020 SIA New Product Showcase virtual awards ceremony, in addition to the presentation of the overall and category-specific awards, attendees enjoyed hearing insights from New Product Showcase judges into innovations driving product advancements in the security industry.
ADT, a provider of security, automation and smart home solutions serving consumer and business customers, has joined the Zigbee Alliance and the Project Connected Home over IP (CHIP) working group. ADT will help to develop and promote the adoption of Project CHIP, a new royalty-free connectivity standard to increase interoperability among smart home products, with security as a fundamental design tenet. “As a member of the Zigbee Alliance, ADT will collaborate with others who are developing the Connected Home over IP initiative to give our customers an even more seamless smart home experience with security and privacy at its foundation,” said Bob Kupbens, President, Chief Innovation and Product Officer at ADT. “Our participation in the Zigbee Alliance and our recently announced partnership with Google demonstrate ADT’s commitment to help develop the next generation of helpful smart home security.” Compatibility across smart home devices The Project CHIP protocol aims to increase compatibility across smart home devices and to define a specific set of IP-based networking technologies for device certification. ADT’s participation in Project CHIP will provide customers with more seamless and secure ways to curate their smart home. Project CHIP has the potential for wide adoption across smart home devices through an open-source approach that will allow ADT systems to easily connect with a growing pool of smart home devices creating a more unified smart home ecosystem. Interoperability and security “The more we connect things around us within home and business settings, the more we need to consider interoperability and security – and through the Alliance community hundreds of companies are working alongside each other to raise standards and expectations around IoT connectivity,” said Chris LaPré, IoT Architect, Zigbee Alliance. “Having ADT join and get involved in Connected Home over IP is a perfect pairing as security is a core design principle of this important member-driven initiative that will transform smart home connections tied to safety, security and everyday digital living.”
Kleard, an award-winning real estate tech company that provides self-tour technology (called Kleard Now), has partnered with Kangaroo Home Security to make self-touring real estate safer, more secure, and helps promote COVID social distancing. Property access works via the Kleard app (available on iOS and Android). The partnership between Kleard and Kangaroo will allow agents the ability to purchase a unique home security package created specifically for real estate listings with a starting price of only $64.99. The two package options will include a combination of a doorbell camera, door/motion sensors, and an indoor camera. Smart home technology Installation is simple, fast, and is done via the Kangaroo app. In-app notifications will inform agents when buyers arrive, when doors are opened, closed, when motion inside the home is detected, and will capture images and video to give agents visual updates when motion is detected. This helps make self-tours using Kleard safer and increases peace-of-mind. With Kangaroo's optional complete plan (1 month is included free), professional monitoring and premium features can be included. Kangaroo's smart home technology was designed to be affordable, extremely easy to set up" Dhruv Garg, Co-Founder and President of Kangaroo, says, "Kangaroo's smart home technology was designed to be affordable, extremely easy to set up, and respectful of user data and privacy. In partnering with Kleard, we are able to extend these core principles into action to enable more secure self-tour events and complete visibility of listed properties for agents - peace of mind for all parties involved." Powerful home security Kleard Now can be used by any licensed real estate agent on their listings in the U.S. The technology reduces friction and allows homes to be toured easily by verified buyers. Kleard requires that all self-tour requests be approved by the listing agent and is done via the app. Buyers simply download the app to find self-tour enabled homes. Social distancing is becoming normalized and with innovative Kleard's self-tour technology, buyers and agents can feel better knowing that homes can be toured without the need to meet in person. "We're excited to partner with Kangaroo. We love that their home security devices are easy to set up and affordable. With this new partnership, agents will be able to add powerful home security to all their listings that have Wi-Fi and will make homes that are self-tour enabled more secure," says Jonathan Martis, Kleard CEO and Co-founder. Both Kleard and Kangaroo are National Association of Realtors (NAR) Reach® Companies, created by Second Century Ventures, the strategic investment arm of NAR.
Johnson Controls has announced it has acquired the remaining stake of Qolsys Inc., a globally renowned residential and commercial security and smart-home manufacturer, after owning a majority stake in the company since 2014. Smart building solutions expert Qolsys enhances Johnson Controls global innovation platform, delivering next generation security and smart building solutions. The Qolsys founders and leadership team will remain in Silicon Valley (San Jose, California), assuming key roles in Johnson Controls’ global intrusion business. Qolsys enhances Johnson Controls global innovation platform, delivering next-gen smart building solutions Johnson Controls continues in its mission to deliver smarter, safer, more intelligent and connected buildings, by deploying emerging technologies, such as embedded IP, artificial intelligence and machine learning through state-of-the-art solutions and partnerships. Johnson Controls is at the forefront of fundamental transformation of how spaces and places are perceived and enjoyed by balancing and responding to the flow of information, services and people that occupy buildings. OpenBlue digital platforms By applying data from both inside and outside buildings, Johnson Controls’ OpenBlue digital platforms empower customers to manage operations, while delivering safety and security in dynamic and agile environments. "Qolsys has grown from a startup to a renowned security platform provider with over 4,000 dealers and service providers worldwide. Johnson Controls sees long-term opportunities to bring Silicon Valley innovation and culture to our broader cloud-enabled IoT solutions in building management, fire and HVAC businesses," said Jeff Williams, President of Global Products, Johnson Controls. "The opportunity to acquire Qolsys allows Johnson Controls to achieve operational efficiencies and scale across our global markets, while further enhancing the suite of products and services offered on our digital platform, OpenBlue." IQ Panel 2 Plus and peripherals The award-winning IQ Panel 2 Plus and peripherals have driven explosive growth in North America and across the globe with future-proof features, supported by over-the-air software updates, built-in panel camera, Bluetooth disarming and innovative installation, and diagnostic tools to reduce costs and increase user engagement and satisfaction. Qolsys continues to show consistent growth of services and dealers, which led to US$ 150 million in revenues during fiscal year 2019. "As the world becomes more connected and the innovation curve continues to ramp at unprecedented speed, we are excited to join Johnson Controls," said Dave Pulling, Qolsys Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Dave will be occupying the post of Vice President and General Manager of the global intrusion products business for Johnson Controls, which had US$ 500 million in revenue in fiscal year 2019. Advanced cloud-enabled solutions firm This is a major milestone in our 10-year journey to disrupt and transform the security industry" Dave adds, "We are committed to our customers in the security channel while continuing to invest in our roadmap and emerging verticals around the globe. This is a major milestone in our 10-year journey to disrupt and transform the security industry with advanced cloud-enabled solutions that transcend traditional intrusion offerings including advanced automation, energy management, apartment management, building management and wellness for aging in place." The combined volume of Qolsys, DSC, Bentel, Visonic - PowerG and Tyco products positions Johnson Controls as the market share major in advanced security solutions worldwide. IQ Hub, Panel, Water and Router products Qolsys recently announced roadmap products, including the IQ Hub, a lower-priced, third-generation IQ Panel; the IQ Router, a next-generation mesh networking solution to elegantly address the rapidly complex connected home; IQ Water, a connected water shut-off valve designed for mass market retrofit and a fourth generation IQ Panel due in 2021 with Qualcomm chipset supporting AI, M2M and next generation connectivity. Johnson Controls will offer Qolsys products throughout global markets. The IQ Panel 2 Plus and a full line of security and home automation devices are available from authorized Qolsys distributors.
NAPCO Security Technologies, Inc. is pleased to announce the appointment of Troy Bonanno as new Metro NY Regional Sales Manager, reporting to Napco SRVP, Northern Region, Dave Sheffey. Applications solution assistance Bonanno joins Napco’s sales team with years of security industry experience, most recently in channel sales/distribution. Dave Sheffey said, “Troy is joining Napco at an important time, with the recent introduction of iSecure Cellular Security & Connected Home Systems and increasing importance of class-leading StarLink Communicators. Especially as we face new 3G/CDMA sunsets and rapid disappearance of POTS lines for FACPs, despite the challenges caused by COVID-19.” As Napco Metro NY Sales Manager, Bonanno will be providing sales support, new product introductions and applications solution assistance on Napco’s Communications, Intrusion & Commercial Fire Security Systems and Connected Home Solutions, throughout the region.
ADT Inc., a provider of security, automation, and smart home solutions serving consumer and business customers in the United States, announced it has been named as the premier provider of smart home security and automation services for D.R. Horton, the nation’s large homebuilder by volume. D.R. Horton homes will be outfitted with Home is Connected®, a suite of smart home and ADT security-ready products that keep one connected with the people and things one values most. Each D.R. Horton home will include connected thermostats, video doorbells, door locks, light switches and lamp modules installed by ADT Authorized Dealer, Safe Haven. Voice-control features Homeowners who choose ADT monitoring can seamlessly connect their smart home security system and connected devices with the easy-to-use ADT cellphone app and use voice control features for simple, hands-free operation. “D.R. Horton’s Home is Connected smart home system was designed to help consumers automate and protect their homes,” said David Auld, President and CEO of D.R. Horton. “As the leading smart home security provider, ADT is well positioned to serve D.R. Horton now and for years to come,” said Jim DeVries, President and CEO of ADT. “We are committed to bringing innovative smart home security and world class customer service to the expanding residential new construction market.” Automate the living experience The ADT security-ready automation technology in new D.R. Horton homes enables owners to set custom scenes so they can automate the living experience, such as setting lights to turn on when the owners come home or raising the thermostat temperature automatically when they leave. “We are focused on offering homebuyers value when they purchase a new home,” Auld said. “Delivering homes that are ADT security-ready is another way we can provide a better experience for our homeowners from the moment they move in, and that's what America's Builder is all about.”
Motion detection is a key feature of security systems in residential and commercial environments. Until recently, systems have relied heavily on closed circuit television (CCTV) and passive infrared (PIR) sensors, which both require significant investment and infrastructure to install and monitor. Developments in wireless technology are increasing home security possibilities. Few years ago, these developments led Cognitive Systems to discover that the wireless signals surrounding oneself can be used to detect motion. Known in the wireless industry as WiFi sensing, this technology brings many benefits that other motion detection solutions have not been able to provide. The working of WiFi sensing At Cognitive Systems, the company has used WiFi sensing technology to develop a motion detection solution called WiFi Motion™, which measures and interprets disruptions in RF signals transmitted between WiFi devices. When movement occurs in a space, ripples in the wireless signals are created. WiFi Motion interprets these ripples and determines if an action, such as sending a notification, is needed. Enabling this functionality in a space is incredibly simple. With a software upgrade to only one’s WiFi access point (or mesh router), motion sensing capabilities are layered into one’s WiFi network. Existing connected WiFi devices then become motion detectors without detracting from their original functions or slowing down the network. Using artificial intelligence (AI), WiFi Motion establishes a benchmark of the motionless environment and learns movement patterns over time, which could be used to predict trends. This allows unusual movement patterns to be detected with greater accuracy while decreasing the potential for costly false alerts. WiFi Motion requires no line-of-sight or installation WiFi sensing and other home monitoring solutions All of these capabilities are made possible by WiFi sensing and together create a motion detection system that provides unparalleled accuracy, coverage, privacy and affordability compared to other solutions on the market. PIR integration is far more complex and imposes electronic and physical design restrictions compared to WiFi sensing. In terms of placement, PIR systems are difficult to install, requiring line-of-sight and a device in every room for localization. WiFi Motion requires no line-of-sight or installation and is also a scalable solution compared to PIR. Much like cameras, PIRs can only cover so much space, but WiFi Motion can cover the entire home and even detect motion in the dark and through walls, without adding additional devices to the home. WiFi Motion detects less distinguishing context than cameras and microphones, but more context than regular PIR sensors for the perfect balance of privacy and highly accurate motion detection. Privacy solution While cameras have been the security solution for years, WiFi Motion offers a more affordable solution that can rival the privacy and coverage capabilities of even the most high-end cameras. With such a wide coverage area, one might think that WiFi sensing infringes on privacy, but actually, the opposite is true. With WiFi Motion, the contextual information collected cannot be used to identify a specific individual, unlike cameras which can clearly identify a person’s face or microphones, which can identify a person’s voice. It is different from other smart home security options that use cameras and microphones because it only senses motion using WiFi signals - it doesn’t “see” or “listen” like a camera or microphone would. This provides opportunities for added security in spaces where privacy might be a concern and installing a camera may not be a comfortable solution, such as bathrooms and bedrooms. The data collected is also anonymized and highly encrypted according to stringent industry privacy standards. Existing connected WiFi devices then become motion detectors Additional WiFi sensing applications Since WiFi sensing technology requires no additional hardware or subscription fees, it is much more affordable than other motion detection solutions. It can be used as a standalone solution, or it can be easily layered into more complex systems. This ease of integration, scalability and relatively low cost brings a lot of potential for various applications. Motion detection can trigger other smart devices in the network to turn lights on or off In eldercare, for example, WiFi sensing can be used to help seniors live comfortably in their homes for as long as possible. With the increasing aging population and high costs associated with care homes, the market for this application is considerable. Caregivers can use an app to monitor movement in their loved one’s home and be alerted about unusual movement patterns that could indicate a concern. For smart homes and other environments that have a network of smart devices, the artificial intelligence (AI) component of the technology allows for improvements to automated features. Motion detection can trigger other smart devices in the network to turn lights on or off or make adjustments to the temperature in a room. Security for the commercial sector For office buildings and other commercial properties, it is easy to see how all of these features could be scaled up to offer a highly accurate and cost-effective motion sensing and smart device automation solution. Cognitive Systems is closely involved with the development of WiFi sensing technology, working with various industry groups to establish standards and help it reach its full potential. WiFi Motion is merely the tip of the iceberg in terms of motion sensing possibilities, but its applications in the world of security are undeniably compelling. It is an exciting time for the wireless industry, as one works with stakeholders in the security space to explore everything this technology can do.
We all know that having CCTV around your home can help to protect you and your family. Without CCTV, you could end up in danger and an intruder could get away with breaking into your house, hurting your loved ones and stealing your possessions. Similarly, without CCTV in the office, you’ll be leaving yourself open to all kinds of damage and could lose a lot of equipment in the process. In short, making sure you have CCTV is important for both home and business security. However, it can be improved to become a more effective system so that you’re better protected, and can even deter a potential intruder without having to panic. In our world of ever-changing technology, we’re able to upgrade and enhance our CCTV systems so they can become a monitored system. Remote CCTV monitoring is an ideal way to protect everyone and everything whether you’re at home or at a workplace. What is remote CCTV monitoring? For a long time, CCTV was one of the best ways to keep your home, the office and people safe. But people started to notice that it would only deter people so much of the time and often the cameras were ignored by intruders. They would just cover their faces and hope for the best as they steal from a home, office or any other premises. Remote CCTV monitoring is a system that can loop into your existing CCTV, or come preinstalled with a new system. This technology sends a feed to a control room full of trained operators that are on call 24/7. Within this control room, operators are able to respond to any sort of distress call or unauthorised movement on the property line. How does it work? Remote CCTV monitoring works by attaching to a live feed of your CCTV system, existing or new, so that the signal and images can be passed to a team of operators. These operators are on hand 24/7 so that if there is a problem, you know that you're safe in the hands of a specialist team. The specialist team has been trained to mitigate the chances of somebody breaking into your home when the system is triggered; similarly they call the local authorities instantly so that the potential intruder has less time to flee the scene. This is especially important if an intruder is already inside your property because they have less time to steal your items and leave. Without CCTV in the office, you’ll be leaving yourself open to all kinds of damage and could lose a lot of equipment in the process One of the biggest questions that revolve around remote CCTV monitoring is the idea of operators watching the CCTV at all times. Luckily most remote CCTV monitoring systems will incorporate a motion detection system to accompany your CCTV. Motion detection offers the ability to alert a control room if there is an unauthorised entry to the property line. These motion detection systems are state-of-the-art and so, depending on the system that you choose, they can watch over your property from a number of angles. Once the motion detection system has been triggered and the alert has been sent to the control room, then and only then will the operators get involved. This means that until the motion detection system has been triggered, nobody will watch your live CCTV feed. After one of the systems has been triggered, one of the specialist operators will instantly jump into action. This means that they can take different measures to deter any potential intruder and make sure that they do everything in their power to stop any damage or theft from the premises. In addition to the motion detection system and CCTV, you are able to opt for a public address (PA) system too. This means that an operator is able to shout commands through the PA system and potentially scare away any intruder. The intruder will also be warned about the fact that local authorities have already been called to the location. Remote monitoring versus traditional CCTV Motion detection offers the ability to alert a control room if there is an unauthorised entry to the property line Having a monitored CCTV system means that you're able to better protect yourself, your business, employees and even your loved ones. Whether you're at home or in the office, having someone looking over your shoulder protecting your every move is something that can be appreciated by everybody. The biggest problem with just having traditional CCTV, is that it is a reactive system. This means that rather than stopping crime, a CCTV system just records it. While the thought is that having a CCTV camera visible can deter some intruders, there's no real evidence to suggest that it stops anybody; anyone can simply cover their face and carry on breaking into your home, office or even your car. As mentioned, remote CCTV monitoring is going to tackle that problem and make sure that someone is on hand to protect you at all times.
Today’s environment has evolved into something that according to some may seem unexplainable. But in the context of video surveillance, this is something that we understand. Allow me to shed some light and understanding in terms of security and why it truly is a necessity. Security is not a luxury, it is a necessity. An essential practice now peaking the interests of all businesses small and large. A video surveillance system is a cost effective option that does not require monitoring fees. As business slows, temporarily shuts down or closes, an increase in vacant properties is inevitable. This pandemic will continue to put severe pressure on many businesses around the country. With so many considered non-essential, it is really sad to see how many must shutter their doors and lay off employees. Keeping an eye out for suspicious activity using a commercial grade surveillance system that supports advanced analytics, may end up saving your potential customers thousands of dollars down the road. Demand For Video Surveillance And Security Products We can certainly draw on the conclusion that security is a “need” more so than a “want”. Times like this just further cement that thought process. In today’s economic spiral, people aren’t actively looking for lighting controls or home theaters. What they look for is a way to keep their loved ones safe, protect their homes, businesses and property. In my opinion, you will see video surveillance and security product sales skyrocket in the coming months and years. It has been reported that response times for first responders may be impacted as a result of COVID-19, leaving those with bad intent more time to ransack a property knowing that law enforcement may be slow to respond. Criminals will always take advantage of the situation. All we can do as a community is use common sense, stay vigilant and watch out for one another. For some of us that may mean mitigating risks with technology. Affordable Video Monitoring Solutions Having a solution that can quickly and securely share video footage may be the difference between identifying a perpetrator and becoming a victim. Ella, a video search platform developed by IC Realtime, makes every second of video instantly searchable and shareable, either with the authorities or your neighborhood social apps. Plus it is compatible with any RTSP streaming device. To wrap this up, it’s not about pointing out the obvious, it’s really about bringing awareness as to how technologies can be implemented to provide peace of mind without breaking the bank. Video surveillance technology is a way to do that and provide added security for you, your family and your business.
J.D. Power is a well-known name when it comes to measuring customer satisfaction, and they have been measuring satisfaction in the home security industry since 2016. Changes affecting the marketplace – both in terms of disruptors and technology – make this a unique time. For example, in 2019, J.D. Power expanded the Home Security Satisfaction Study to not only measure the traditional pro-install/pro-monitor companies, but to separately evaluate self-install/pro-monitor brands. “At J.D. Power our rankings are meant to support an industry in two key ways,” says Christina Cooley, J.D. Power's Director, @Home Intelligence. “First, we provide consumers who are shopping for products and services with a ‘report card’ of who provides customers with high levels of customer satisfaction. Second, we provide companies with actionable insights to help them prioritize their initiatives to improve and maintain high levels of customers satisfaction that drive loyalty and growth.” Differentiating between companies The traditional Pro-Install/Pro-Monitor companies are challenged to differentiate from one another In home security, J.D. Power is in a unique position to report on the changes taking place in the evolving industry. The 2019 rankings show that the traditional Pro-Install/Pro-Monitor companies are challenged to differentiate from one another, as each have their individual strengths and opportunities, but overall the score range is relatively tight. On the do-it-yourself (DIY) side, there is more differentiation. A set of brands has been able to challenge the traditional industry by achieving extremely high customer satisfaction levels. Price is always an important factor that impacts customer satisfaction, whether for security or another market J.D. Power serves. The equation is simple, says Cooley: Does the price paid equal the value the customer feels they have received from the product or service? “For Home Security, we didn’t specifically look at price until this year,” says Cooley. “With the changes that have occurred in the market, price can be a differentiator as we’ve seen with the emergence of DIY-installed systems. However, lower pricing does not have a direct relationship to quality of service.” The price factor For example, there are some higher-priced pro-installed brands that perform lower on customer satisfaction than lower-priced competitors. And DIY-installed systems as a whole are less expensive, and price is the customer satisfaction driver in which the DIY segment most outperforms the pro segment. Price is the customer satisfaction driver in which the DIY segment most outperforms the pro segment The equation is: Performance minus Expectations equals Customer Satisfaction. “Obviously, price point will be a factor in the purchase decision and the expectations the customer has about the product and service,” says Cooley. “Any pro or DIY system has the opportunity to differentiate the customer experience regardless of price point.” There are clear differences in the pro vs. DIY experience, which is why J.D. Power evaluates the brands in separate rankings. However, Cooley says the drivers of satisfaction are consistent across both groups. The key to each group goes back to the equation above. Evaluating the purchase process For the both pro and DIY companies, J.D. Power evaluates the purchase process the same. Though the customer may take a different path to purchase based on the offering they seek, the drivers are still the same: Usefulness of information provided Reasonableness of contract terms Professionalism of sales representative Ease of purchasing home security system. For installation, there are clear differences. DIY systems are evaluated based on: Ease of completing installation Quality of installation instructions provided Timeliness of receiving home security system. Pro systems are evaluated based on: Professionalism of technician Timeliness of completing installation Quality of work performed. Interestingly, purchase and installation are the customer satisfaction driver where both pro and DIY providers (as a whole) are most closely aligned on performance. Customer loyalty The price a customer is paying must align with the quality of the system they receive What drives a customer to purchase a home security system initially will often be very different than what will keep them as a loyal customer, Cooley notes. The price a customer is paying must align with the quality of the system they receive, and the service provided through the professional monitoring and customer service. “With the expansion of home security offerings, it’s more important than ever for home security companies to understand the motivations, intentions, and usage patterns across different customer segments to ensure that regardless of the decision to go pro or DIY-install, they are able to meet their customers’ needs and differentiate in the very competitive market. The J.D. Power Home Security Study provides these actionable insights.” The study is focused on the companies/brands that comprise the top two-thirds of market share in each segment, pro and DIY installed. A number of the brands included may work with local dealers or retailers for sales and install, but the customer is essentially evaluating those services as part of the system purchased. It is one and the same from the customer’s perspective, and the sales/install process can either delight or frustrate a customer from the beginning, which can then set the foundation for the entire experience moving forward. Reasons for shopping for a security system tend to differ between pro and DIY shoppers: Both sets are most focused on wanting a newer, more up-to-date system Between the two, pro customers are more often moving into a new home or wanting to take advantage of a discount or bundling opportunity with other products For DIY customers, they are shopping for a system to give them more peace of mind and to protect their property. Reasons for selecting the provider also vary: A pro company is often selected based on brand reputation or a special offer/promo A DIY company is primarily chosen based on price or a positive review. In terms of brand image, we see that customers see both pro and DIY providers similarly in terms of reliability. However, when it comes to being customer-driven, DIY providers receive higher image ratings compared to pro-installed companies.
Security’s intersection with consumer electronics is on view at CES 2020, the world’s largest technology event, Jan. 7-10 in Las Vegas. The giant show features more than 170,000 attendees, 4,500 exhibitors and 1,100 industry thought-leaders featured on the CES stage. A range of technologies will be on display, from artificial intelligence (AI) to 5G, vehicle technology to AR/VR (augmented and virtual reality), robotics to home automation. Security plays a prominent role, too.The impact of this event for the smart home could be about delivering home analytics and enhancing privacy" Smart home market on the forefront The smart home market is a major focus. “For the smart home market at CES this year, we expect to see numerous announcements regarding home awareness,” says Blake Kozak, Senior Principal Analyst at IHS Markit. “This will include brands offering up additional analytics for consumer security cameras with a focus on edge-based solutions.” “The impact of this [event] for the smart home could be about delivering home analytics and enhancing privacy through cloudless architectures and new electronic door lock approaches,” he adds. An example of cloud analytics is the Resideo Home app, introduced in December, which will make whole-home monitoring possible for four critical networks of the home – water, air, energy and security. Resideo promises a “simplified and integrated smart home experience.” Video is also prominent at the show. “For cameras, we can expect to see more cameras focused on the outdoor space and possibly new form factors for video doorbells,” says Kozak. Familiar security industry brands exhibiting at CES 2020 include ADT, Ring, August Home and Yale (both part of ASSA ABLOY), Bosch and Alarm.com. Focus on Cybersecurity In 2020, companies will continue to focus on solutions for protecting consumer data" Cybersecurity is an aspect of many of the devices on display at CES. “Device security and data privacy play a key role in the adoption of connected devices,” says Elizabeth Parks, President, Parks Associates. “Consumer security concerns for smart home products will continue to be a barrier to adoption in the U.S. and Europe, and these concerns can actually intensify with device adoption-71% of U.S. smart home households are concerned about cybersecurity. In 2020, companies will continue to focus on solutions for protecting consumer data. One big area of interest is protection on the network router, providing whole home solutions, which are very appealing to consumers.” “At CES we will see the traditional players introducing new DIY (do-it-yourself) products, as well as new players announcing new product features, services, and partnerships,” Parks adds. Smart access control Smart locks will be among the security products at CES 2020. For example, PassiveBolt, a lock company, will show the Shepherd Lock, a touch-enabled smart lock with enhanced security through sensors and AI. The add-on lock converts existing locksets into touch-activated devices. Another lock manufacturer is Kwikset, whose door locks and door hardware include Wi-Fi-enabled smart locks, Bluetooth-enabled smart locks, keyless and keyway-less locks and connected home technology. Video doorbells, including industry-innovator Ring, have been a hit in the consumer market. At CES, Ring will expand the mission to make neighborhoods safer by creating a “Ring of Security” around homes and communities with a suite of home security products and services. The “Neighbors by Ring” app enables affordable, complete, proactive home and neighborhood security. Homeguard offers a range of affordable CCTV solutions for home and small business DIY CCTV demonstrations DIY security systems are another market. Homeguard is a leading DIY consumer brand offering a range of affordable CCTV solutions for home and small business, including wired and wireless CCTV kits, smart cameras, home alarm systems and wire-free HD CCTV kits. Swann Communications is also at the forefront of surveillance and monitoring with new products developments including wire-free HD cameras and doorbells, professional CCTV video surveillance systems, and 1080p full HD systems with “True Detect” heat and motion sensing. AVTECH, and subsidiary YesGo Tech, will demonstrate a compact Wi-Fi home security set, a series of special cameras with face recognition, thermal detection and license plate recognition, customized central management software and a university ID tag that is compatible with access control, OEM and ODM opportunities. Security and automation solutions D-Link’s home networking, security and automation solutions will help consumers connect, view, share, entertain, work and play. SECO-LARM, manufacturer of a Room Occupancy Monitor that shows whether a room is in use, has a line of keypads and proximity readers with built-in Bluetooth for convenient access. Another smart home security solutions provider, Climax Technology, integrates wireless security, home automation, energy management, home emergency monitoring and live visual monitoring. Personal safety mobile application Manufacturers are positioning outdoor cameras as deterrents to theft before a burglary happens" WaryMe designs and develops a personal safety mobile application to improve a user’s security in public places, schools, transports and companies by addressing major risks such as terrorism attacks, intrusion, fire and even industrial accidents. An all-in-one mobile application integrates alerting, crisis management and mass notification features. “Market players are looking to expand beyond established smart home devices like smart thermostats and networked cameras to products like smart water leak detectors, smart pet feeders, and smart air purifiers,” says Elizabeth Parks. “Manufacturers are positioning outdoor cameras as deterrents to theft before a burglary happens. This trend is part of a broader security marketing effort to extend the perimeter of home security beyond traditional home access points.” “Familiarity with smart home devices lags behind familiarity with smart entertainment products; it even lags that of smart speakers, which are quite new in the market,” adds Parks. “In 2020, we will see players working to advance the visibility and marketing around device integration, and specifically focus on use case scenarios around safety, security, and convenience, which have always been the primary drivers of adoption of these types of products.”
The boundaries between the smart home market and security market at large are narrowing. Amidst a wave of expansion, suddenly everything is becoming digital. Home automation has been around for close to 30 years but hasn’t really hit it big because integration hasn’t been that simple. Now that the Internet of Things has stepped into the market, home automation is really taking off. As technology in the smart home market advances, the gap between the residential and professional security markets is growing smaller. Additional revenue for security industry There will continue to be more opportunity for interoperability, and home automation will continue to grow and eventually become a norm. Growth in the residential security market and its position as the channel for smart home solutions, have attracted numerous new entrants. Telecoms, cable operators, and CE (consumer electronics) manufacturers are joining traditional security players as they compete to fulfill consumer demand for safety and security. Connected products also provide a layer of competition as consumers must decide whether having category devices such as doorbell video cameras, networked cameras and other products suffice for their security. Smart home services can provide additional revenue streams for the security industry. In Parks Associates’ 2017 survey of U.S. security dealers, 58% report that smart home service capabilities enable extra monthly revenue. Almost half of dealers also note they have to offer smart home devices and services in order to keep up with their competition. Data capture form to appear here! Residential security solutions Growth is going to be slow and steady. Everyone needs to be realistic about that" The trend has no doubt accelerated in the last couple of years. New collaborations are being made between audio-video (AV) suppliers and security solution providers. The clientele of high-end AV products is becoming increasingly concerned with home security and property protection. So, in recent months, the requirement for residential security solutions has been increasing as technical solutions can go hand in hand with AV installers’ capabilities and client base. “One of the big mistakes many make is that they assume – based on some of the hype and big market investments – that the smart home market is set to explode,” says Michael Philpott, Senior Practice Leader, Consumer Services at Ovum. "This is not the case – growth is going to be slow and steady. Everyone needs to be realistic about that, rather than expecting some rapid ramp up simply because some big names have entered the market.” Pressure to upgrade security standards Surprisingly for what has historically been something of a grudge purchase, in the context of home automation, security is seen as a solution some consumers are looking for. Another security aspect of home automation is cybersecurity, in particular how it applies to various IoT devices in the home. Now as connected devices gather personal information from realms long considered private and protected – the bedroom, the kitchen counter, the nursery – the risks are higher than ever. All of the data that various devices and sites have collected can be combined, shifted and then exploited by marketers or even stolen by hackers. Both manufacturers of smart home products and the companies that install them are feeling pressure to upgrade security standards. They are moving to set policies that will regulate who has access to data and how it is used. Ease of installation Advances in the home market are increasing customers’ expectations as well as adoption of newer technologies A recent revelation that some “smart TVs” might be listening to conversations and transmitting them to "third parties" caused an uproar. These sets have voice activated features that enable users to change channel, turn on a DVD or browse the internet by speaking to the screen or remote. The fine print in privacy policies contains warnings that general conversations are also being heard, and one company even told owners to turn off this function if they were concerned. Another impact of smart homes on the security marketplace is to raise expectations about the capabilities of commercial systems. Products made today for residential applications are very high quality, easy to install (do-it-yourself, or DIY), and have very rich feature sets. End users expect their commercial solutions to have a similar ease of use and ease of installation. Geofencing in commercial applications The quality of video that people are seeing at home is motivating some legacy commercial customers to finally move to IP video from lower resolution analog cameras. A higher percentage of commercial customers use cellphone applications to view integrated video and access control data. People’s experience with smart thermostats has them asking for geofencing in some commercial applications. In short, advances in the home market are increasing customers’ expectations as well as adoption of newer technologies. Read part two of our smart home mini series here.
An upgrade of video technology at a south London residential estate has proved so effective that the system has been immediately scaled-up. The IDIS video solution, implemented by Hall & Kay Security Engineering at the Meridian South Development in Hither Green, is less obtrusive than the system it replaced, yet it immediately delivered better results, with a number of incidents tackled to the surprise of the culprits. IDIS video solution Although the mixed development, comprising 440 owner-occupied and rented properties, is a safe and pleasant neighborhood for most of the time, to maintain this high standard of living managers needed to tackle a growing problem with petty crime and anti-social behavior. Hall & Kay were asked to solve this problem by implementing an advanced, end-to-end video solution from IDIS Issues were being reported with increasing frequency, including rubbish being dumped by short-term tenants vacating their apartments, theft from mailboxes, vandalism, and car crime. Rubbish removal alone was costing the management company more than £12,000 annually. Hall & Kay were asked to solve this problem by implementing an advanced, end-to-end video solution from IDIS, Korea’s largest in-country manufacturer. IDIS cameras deployed The H&K team began by replacing the ten column-mounted PTZ cameras with IDIS cameras. IDIS technicians visited the site with the H&K engineers and conducted a bandwidth test on the existing cabling, demonstrating that, by using the existing coax with IDIS ethernet converters, up to four IDIS fixed bullet cameras could be cost-effectively mounted on each existing column. Additionally, wireless access points were installed where cameras couldn’t be cabled directly to the estate control room. This approach eliminated blind-spots and guaranteed that events would not be missed when the system was unmanned. IDIS Center video management software (VMS) To provide wider coverage, a further six columns were added, and additional IDIS cameras were mounted in the underground car parking areas. The system now delivers full HD images in all lighting conditions, with built-in IR ensuring night-time image capture at distances up to 30m. All footage is stored for 30 days. The security officers and maintenance staff who manage the estate are also taking advantage of the easy-to-use analytics functions that come with the totally cost-free IDIS Center video management software (VMS). These tools include motion detection which can be utilized out of hours to ensure that scenes are only recorded when movement occurs, thus minimizing bandwidth usage and storage requirements. This feature, along with IDIS MapVue navigation, also makes it easy to quickly review footage to find incidents of interest. IDIS full HD IR cameras Within 24 hours of the cameras being installed, departing tenants were recorded illegally dumping rubbish The 57 IDIS full HD IR cameras, and the three NVRs with 12TB storage each, benefit from true plug-and-play set up with DirectIP. When the South Meridian management team saw the quality of images now being captured, they asked if the system could be extended. With IDIS’s flexible approach this was quick and easy to do. Within 24 hours of the cameras being installed, departing tenants were recorded illegally dumping rubbish. Shortly after this, a contractor working at the site reported that tools had been stolen in both cases, with high definition evidence of the crime being captured and passed to the police. Easy-to-use VMS controls In fact, thanks to the design of the system, and the easy-to-use VMS controls, security staff was able to retrieve footage of the incident itself, along with a full video trail of the thief moving across the estate, before and afterwards. Word has now spread about how effective the new system is, and residents are delighted that there are now no blind spots. “The support we had from IDIS was second to none and the technology works exactly as promised,” said Wayne Wharton, Security Sales Manager, H&K Security, adding “We are now looking at many more IDIS projects with the same customer and others.” “We are delighted that IDIS technology is making such a positive difference to the quality of life of residents at Meridian South,” said James Min, Managing Director at IDIS Europe.
Based in the affluent district of St John’s Wood, Collection Place is a high specification development comprising 14 luxury apartments, built nearby the infamous Abbey Road studios. Home automation and integration specialists, Advanced Integration (AI) invited Comelit to present custom door entry systems, as part of a security upgrade program of works. Specification included bespoke brass video flush panels with video monitors and smart capability to manage from a cellphone, incorporating full links to dedicated 24-hour concierge services. Smart door entry systems Says Kem Rashica, Estate Manager of The Collection Management Limited / Harrods Estates Asset Management: “Every element of our development, set in heart of our beautiful St John’s Wood, was created to present residents with a high-end luxury lifestyle, from specification to security and privacy. We are always looking for best ways to maintain and futureproof this expectation.” “Advanced Integration highlighted the opportunity to present smart door entry systems and recommended Comelit, as a brand renowned for delivering on design and style without compromising on technology or security. The installation was seamless and residents are now delighted to be able to manage their home from the convenience of their cellphone.” Monitors with video capability Maria Tsiftis, Chief Operating Officer of Advanced Integration added: “When it came to upgrade the door entry, we wanted to incorporate a visual, smart capability, without affecting the style or ambience on site. Being a residential development, we also had to be conscious of any works program not causing disruption to daily lives." “Comelit responded with a bespoke specification, including high-end entrance panels, monitors with video capability and concierge systems, enabling a combination of door entry and messaging. Being involved from the design stages ensured a smooth delivery and beautiful custom finish befitting to this luxury development.” Video intercom calls on a smartphone Comelit designed the door entry systems for Collection Place, to operate through its innovative VIP system, which offers a powerful all-encompassing opportunity for residents to receive video intercom calls on a smartphone. Sam Arnold, Business Development Manager at Comelit UK concluded: “St John’s Wood is one of London’s most upscale residential locations, and Collection Place has been established in the elegant villa-style housing that is synonymous with the area.” “Any enhancements to door entry had to be delivered to complement this lavish attention on detail, but also serve discerning homeowners who want the advantages of service and latest technology. By working closely with Advanced Integration, we have delivered a sleek and functional, smart security solution to accommodate these requirements.”
Future residents at Kebbell Homes’ new prestigious development, Wintersbrooke will be able to receive and answer door entry requests via cellphone or Amazon Alexa voice control, thanks to Comelit’s WIFI connected monitors. Set in Ascot, Berkshire, Wintersbrooke is a grand, new gated community featuring just six spacious and exclusive 2-3 bedroom apartments within mature, secluded communal gardens. Kebbell Homes has used Comelit’s specification team on previous developments and again called upon its services, together with chosen installers R&M Bailey, from the initial design process, through the work’s program to project completion. Door entry, via Comelit’s mini handsfree WIFI monitors, will enable new residents to respond to door entry requests from their cellphone, and also integrates with Amazon Alexa for voice announcements and control of the gate/front door to the block. Facial recognition technology The monitors provide facial recognition technology for authorized guests to gain access and video memory, to record any missed calls. Says Andrea Fawell, Sales and Marketing Director at Kebbell Homes: “With high expectations for Wintersbrooke’s indulgent design to deliver gracious living for our discerning buyers, every element had to be considered to offer the highest level of luxury and specification. And to ensure all feels safe and secure.” All the smart home security systems installed had to be equally stylish and futureproof" “We had worked previously with Comelit and knew its systems were able to achieve the level of style intended to complement Wintersbrooke’s dignified presence. The additional benefits of WIFI connected monitors provide our soon to be residents with latest integrated smart security technology, seamlessly installed, enabling them to instantly respond to door entry requests, at their choice and from wherever they are.” Smart home security systems Mat Bailey, Director from R&M Bailey added: “Wintersbrooke has the look and feel of a private country home, which epitomizes Kebbell Homes’ well-known flair for grand architecture. All the smart home security systems installed had to be equally stylish and futureproof. Comelit’s Mini Handsfree WIFI was the natural choice for door entry, easy to install via wireless technology and simple to integrate. Just the one solution presents future homeowners with user friendly bespoke options that can connect seamlessly with their home security, and be controlled by cellphone and Amazon Alexa, at their own choice.” Each home at Wintersbrooke has been fitted with a Mini Handsfree monitor complete with integrated WIFI, operating through Comelit’s renowned Simplebus 2 wire. At the striking gates to the development is Comelit’s premium stainless steel flush mounted, 316 Sense digital entrance panel. Door entry system Up to fifteen smart devices can be connected to each and every property’s individual WIFI monitor The system enables new residents to grant access through the vehicle gates or adjacent pedestrian gate using the internal monitor or a dedicated mobile app. A second is fitted on the front door of the development itself. Up to fifteen smart devices can be connected to each and every property’s individual WIFI monitor. Daniel Wood, Southern Sales Manager at Comelit UK concluded: “Once again, it was a pleasure for Comelit to work closely with Kebbell Homes to ensure the complete door entry system installed at Wintersbrooke, achieved the desired balance between timeless style and latest technology." Alexa voice control "From the gated entry using our Sense panel, which at only 3 mm thin, blends in with any building due to the panel's slim profile, to the chic WIFI monitors, the combined solution, provides aspiring residents with a powerful door entry system and the convenience of audio and visual communication, together with ease of use via mobile or Alexa voice control in everyday life.” Comelit’s official website can be visited for more information on Comelit’s ViP System, Mini handsfree WIFI Monitor Door Entry Solutions or range of products.
Amthal has worked closely with the management team and residents at Kenilworth Court to ensure fire and security upgrades on site occur without compromising on aesthetics of the Edwardian mansion blocks. Situated in Putney, Kenilworth Court consists of eight purpose-built Edwardian style blocks of flats, completed in 1904 – 1905. Featuring 150 portered flats, with a garden in the middle, it is now run by the controlling company, Kenilworth Court Co-ownership Housing Association Ltd. Upgrading door entry system The opportunity to upgrade door entry from audio to video capability saw the initial introduction of Amthal to the development. So successful in understanding the importance of keeping with original design features, working closely with the management team and residents, from initial specification through installation and project completion, Amthal now additionally maintains security gates and all fire requirements on site. Video security system at Kenilworth Court Steve Logie, General Manager at Kenilworth Court Co-Ownership Housing Association Ltd, said “With the historic significance of our development, and the pride of notable residents who have lived here, any upgrades, however small, must be carefully considered with regards to how it will impact on the aesthetics of the overall premises.” Steve adds, “Amthal understood this and worked closely with us and our residents, carefully taking in feedback to create bespoke video door entry solutions that blend with the grand entrances. Installation was sympathetic, always ensuring wiring was discreet and ‘boxed in’ where necessary.” He further said, “So impressed with their customer service and technical ability, we now consider them our preferred supplier for all fire and security maintenance.” CAME BPT brass entrance panel installed Based on resident feedback, Amthal created and installed a bespoke CAME BPT brass entrance panel for Kenilworth Court Based on resident feedback, Amthal created and installed a bespoke CAME BPT brass entrance panel for Kenilworth Court, allowing all homeowners to benefit from stylish video door entry technology. Residents and staff also benefit from an upgraded Paxton Net2 access control system, with dedicated fobs distributed to ensure safe and secure block entry. Phil Bryant, Amthal Strategic Accounts Team Manager added, “The key to our success with Kenilworth Court was taking the time initially to create an installation works program with video door entry systems that could blend in visually without disrupting the architectural aesthetic of the development.” Enhanced security system Phil adds, “We spoke with the management team and residents throughout the design process, bringing door entry styles and samples to ensure everyone was confident in the installed final solution.” He further said, “From this, our engineering team and customer service has built up a trusting relationship where residents understand our needs to operate internally, sometimes within apartments themselves and also through communal areas. And the management team has peace of mind that fire and security requirements will be maintained to exceed standards across the development.” Security solutions expert Independently owned, Amthal Fire & Security is dedicated to satisfying end user needs for security safety and convenience offering design, installation, service and remote monitoring of advanced electronic fire & security solutions, including intruder, fire, access and CCTV systems. Amthal Fire & Security is accredited by the Security Systems and Alarm Inspection Board (SSAIB) United Kingdom Accreditation Services (UKAS) and British Approvals for Fire Equipment (BAFE).
Resilience and efficiency have become watchwords for the public institutions, before, during and after the ongoing health crisis. In delivering services fit for the modern world, these institutions need more than just innovation and accountability. They require flexibility and agility, too, including in how they approach security. The lock and key have enjoyed public trust for a long time. Keys were used in Ancient Egypt and Assyria, and warrant a mention in the Christian Old Testament. As a technology the key is familiar and proven, user-friendly and dependable. It can also be inflexible and time-consuming to manage. The security challenges of delivering public services do not stand still, but standard mechanical keys cannot move with oneself. Filtering access intelligently and dynamically has become part of security’s job description. Yet there is no need to dispose of the key altogether. One can adapt it, rather than throw it out. Intelligent, programmable keys combine the powerful features of electronic access control with the convenience of a mechanical key. They are keys, familiar and user-friendly… but evolved. When the key has a brain, one can do more with less. These efficiencies are critical in a world where demands on the public institutions are at levels not seen in generations. Cut workload and solve the problem of lost keys One [lost] key cost from €3,000 to €4,000 for changing cylinders and replacing the keys" Lost keys present mechanical security with its most intractable problem. When a key goes missing, time and budget are expended to remedy the situation. Extensive rekeying and reissuing to relevant keyholders are complex and expensive. Programmable keys, however, solve the problem quickly. The French town of Villiers-le-Bel, north of Paris, faced these familiar key management challenges. Each person in their Municipal Technical Centre carried approximately 40 physical keys. If one was lost or stolen, all compromised cylinders had to be changed. To prevent unauthorised access, all the keys had to be replaced, too, at great expense. Key duplication costs were mounting. “One [lost] key cost from €3,000 to €4,000 for changing cylinders and replacing the keys,” explains Fabrice Girard, Territorial Technician at the town’s Municipal Technical Centre. To fix this expensive lost key problem, Villiers-le-Bel city administrators chose to combine trusted mechanical security with new electromechanical key-operated locking, all managed within the same flexible, wireless access control system. Now lost or stolen electronic keys are cancelled instantly using secure cloud software which works inside a standard browser, no software installation required. Administrators can program access rights for any key, padlock or cylinder. They filtre access to specific sites and doors according to the precise requirements of every municipal employee. Keep residents safe in their homes In Aalborg, Denmark, around 3,000 citizens in home care have programmable locking cylinders installed at their front door. This replaces a cumbersome mechanical master-key system. Aalborg’s installation was tailored to meet the needs of this vulnerable group of city residents. Certified technicians simply replaced each old cylinder with a programmable cylinder If a home care resident loses their key, its access rights can be deleted from the system without the need for a lock replacement — keeping the keyholder’s home safe and saving the city time and money on rekeying. Managing Aalborg’s system is straightforward. Lock installation was quick and easy: certified technicians simply replaced each old cylinder with a programmable cylinder — with no wiring and no major alterations to the door. Aalborg’s fire brigade quickly took over the maintenance process. Brigade staff now grant or revoke access, and tailor permissions for different users or locations according to defined needs. In Skellefteå, Sweden, electromechanical locking has given local firefighters faster, safer access to any building. To speed up emergency response times and improve firefighter safety, the local service fitted houses with secure façade key cabinets.More rapid response means a better chance to prevent a fire spreading Property keys are stored inside the cabinets, so authorised firefighters get rapid building access if there is a fire. When the emergency call comes, firefighters update their individual, programmable key at the station or while on the move, using a remote key updater kept in the fire engine. There’s no longer any need for fire stations to hold multiple sets of keys or for off-site firefighters to divert to the station to collect the right key. More rapid response means a better chance to prevent a fire spreading. Safety is improved for everyone, Skellefteå residents at home and firefighters at work. Clear workflow bottlenecks in public housing With crime against empty properties on the rise, public authorities in the English city of Rotherham aimed to minimise the time a council house stands vacant. However, workers from multiple departments require access to prepare a property for a new tenant. Passing keys securely between all relevant staff members was a major cause of delay. Security managers issue the precise permissions which every staff member needs At Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council (RMBC), intelligent key technology helped streamline these workflows, upgrading security and saving money at the same time. RMBC identified physical key handover as a major bottleneck in their workflow. They needed a solution to speed up the process. Now, each relevant RMBC staff member is issued with their own programmable key. Using simple online software, security managers issue the precise permissions which every staff member needs. The access rights of any key can be amended or revoked at any time. Physical handover of mechanical keys, and the time and money spent coordinating this process, has been eliminated. Preserve the fabric of historic buildings, and the design integrity of new spaces Building type can make a big difference to the access control one chooses. Public spaces inside protected heritage buildings often cannot opt for card- and reader-based access control. Here, wireless electronic cylinders which simply replace existing mechanical locks solve the problem, preserving doors which may be centuries old. Intelligent key security is hardly noticeable for the library’s many visitors The issue of aesthetics also affects modern public spaces, albeit differently. In Stuttgart, innovative design was a key element of the city’s new library building. Door security should be discreet and not disrupt the vision of Korean architect, Eun Young Yi. This was the first public building in Stuttgart’s Europaviertel, a unique creation with a double façade with glass bricks, a brightly lit atrium four storeys high, and public entrances on all four sides. Almost as soon as it opened, the building was declared an architectural icon — “instantly one of the world’s most beautiful libraries.” Intelligent key security is hardly noticeable for the library’s many visitors, yet critical for protecting Stuttgart’s precious public heritage Save time and money managing keys for a mobile workforce Many public services involve managing and directing a mobile or contractor workforce. Mileage expense mounts up when workers must return to base to collect keys or update their access rights. With a Bluetooth-powered solution, everyone carries their own programmable key Mobile workers use more fuel and increase a carbon footprint. One makes a business more sustainable quickly if one reduces the mileage one travels. Reducing miles while maintaining security is not easy, if one relies on mechanical keys to secure remote or dispersed sites. Bluetooth-enabled intelligent keys eliminate the need for workers to return to headquarters to collect or return a mechanical key. With a Bluetooth-powered solution, everyone carries their own programmable key and keeps its access rights up to date on the move, simply by making an encrypted connection to a secure smartphone app — meaning fewer miles driven and less money wasted on unnecessary fuel. One technology powers all the solutions All the installations referenced above — and many, many more across the full spectrum of public services — run on the same technology: CLIQ® from ASSA ABLOY. CLIQ combines electronic and mechanical security in a range of wireless cylinder applications, including a full range of mechatronic and electronic cylinders and padlocks. CLIQ locks are installed without wires: every cylinder’s power is supplied by a battery inside the CLIQ key. These keys are physically identical and programmable by a system administrator using a desktop updater; by keyholders with a portable programmer; or in the case of CLIQ Connect Bluetooth-enabled keys, via an encrypted connection to a secure smartphone app, minimising both wasted journeys and unnecessary social contact between workers and office staff. Intuitive software makes it simple to manage access rights, enable and disable keys and customise access schedules, on site or on the go. To learn how you can put CLIQ® intelligent key technology to work in agile, flexible, secure public services, download a free introductory guide at https://campaigns.assaabloyopeningsolutions.eu/eCLIQ
Synectics has secured a multi-site protection contract for a customer whose infrastructure assets are considered critical to national security. Responsible for maintaining an energy network that supplies over 3.9 million homes and businesses, the customer required a centralized system to guard against both physical and cyber threats at five key sites – each recognized as a national asset with corresponding levels of access clearance. The Synectics solution, driven by its Synergy 3 command and control platform, integrates third-party sensors, analytics, cameras, systems, personnel databases, and edge devices. The resulting level of situational awareness gives the team – based at the customer’s state-of-the-art Alarm Receiving Center (ARC) – complete oversight and control of security, safety, and site-management systems at each facility. Electrified perimeter-fence systems As part of the contract, Synectics will also provide a redundant ARC solution for failover scenarios. The core integrations included as part of the project ensure alerts and responses are linked to, and can implement direct control of, door-access systems, intrusion-detection systems, intercom technology, and the electrified perimeter-fence systems deployed at each location. Synectics will conduct a complete system FAT, which includes all specified third-party software and hardware, at its dedicated UK testing facilities. Given the high-risk, high-security nature of the project, the provider’s ability to system-test at such scale was a crucial factor in the contract being awarded. The five locations to be monitored from the ARC are government-authorized to trigger armed response units to deal with imminent or actual threats. Command and control system In addition to meeting technical resiliency specifications, Synectics will be providing cybersecurity consultation The solution will, therefore, employ customized workflows to support incident (alarm) validation and protocol-compliant responsive action. The solution will also see each site equipped with its localised command and control system for on-site management, with the ability to manually and automatically escalate incidents to the ARC team as required. Cybersecurity was a specific focus of the brief. In addition to meeting technical resiliency specifications with authentication and encryption solutions, Synectics will be providing ongoing cybersecurity consultation, working in partnership with in-house specialists to ensure the continuous development of protective measures. Third-Party system Martin Bonfield, UK Sales Manager at Synectics, commented: “The perfect alignment between customer requirements and Synectics’ track record in CNI meant the lead integrator came directly to us with this exciting project. Our credentials and expert team, coupled with Synergy 3’s ability to remotely integrate and interoperate with any third-party system vital to effective operations, meant we ticked multiple boxes." "We are regarded in the industry as a safe pair of hands with the relevant experience, and an innovator with the forward-focused technology required to meet all aspects of the brief.”
Round table discussion
Driven by technology developments such as voice recognition, smart devices and the Internet of Things, our homes are getting “smarter” all the time. Increasingly, we expect our residential environments to be responsive to our voice commands, whether we are adjusting a thermostat, turning on a light, or lowering the window shade. Smarter home integration yields new opportunities and challenges for home security, too, which contributes an element of safety and protection to the convenience aspects of smart homes. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How are new smart home systems impacting security?
Our Expert Panel is an opinionated group on a wide variety of topics, and we are dedicated to providing a useful and flexible forum to share those opinions. This week, our panelists address a range of opinions about several self-selected topics, culled from the large number of Expert Panelist responses we have collected in the last year. In this Expert Panel Roundtable article, we will share these varied and insightful responses to ensure they are not lost to posterity!
Video cameras are everywhere, and hundreds more are installed every day. Our society appears to be reaching a point of perpetual surveillance. It certainly feels as if we are always being watched even though it is not yet the case. But as cameras are becoming more common than ever, we are also entering a new era of privacy concerns and sensitivities, as evidenced by GDPR and other such initiatives. We presented this quandary to this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Surveillance cameras can go anywhere, right? Where is it “not OK?”