APi Group Corporation (APi Group) is pleased to announce that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the Chubb Fire & Security Business (Chubb) from Carrier Global Corporation for an enterprise value of US$ 3.1 billion, which is comprised of US$ 2.9 billion cash and approximately US$ 200 million of assumed liabilities and other adjustments.
Chubb Fire & Security
Headquartered in the United Kingdom, Chubb has approximately 13,000 employees globally and a sales and service network that spans 17 countries, serving more than 1.5 million customer sites in Europe, Asia Pacific, and Canada. The business is a globally recognized fire safety and security provider, offering customers complete and reliable services, from design and installation to monitoring and ongoing maintenance.
Russell (Russ) Becker, APi Group’s President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) stated, “This is a very exciting day in the history of APi. We have spent a tremendous amount of time evaluating several transformative opportunities, as well as more traditional acquisitions. With the acquisition of Chubb, we see a tremendous amount of accelerated organic growth and margin expansion opportunities across our combined platform.”
Major life safety services provider
The acquisition of Chubb transforms APi into the world’s leading life safety services provider"
Russ Becker adds, “There is also significant opportunity to leverage Chubb’s 200+ year history of providing statutorily required and route-based services through its internationally recognized brand. We look forward to providing additional details during our conference call today at 9:00 am (Eastern Time) and we look forward to welcoming Chubb’s 13,000 employees to our family of businesses.”
APi Group’s Co-Chair, Sir Martin E. Franklin commented, “The acquisition of Chubb transforms APi into the world’s leading life safety services provider. We believe the transaction will be highly accretive with significant synergy opportunities. Together, the business can move faster and more efficiently, globally leveraging the expertise and ability of our combined 26,000 dedicated and talented employees.”
APi Group’s Co-Chair, James E. Lillie said, “This acquisition meets all of our previously stated, key strategic investment criteria. Chubb has a history of strong free cash flow generation, they are leaders in their niche markets and have an experienced leadership team. The acquisition strengthens our strategic platform and expands our geographical reach as the combined entity will have market-leading positions in key geographies.”
He adds, “Importantly, 50%+ of our revenue will be service-based with meaningful, statutorily-required, recurring revenue. We believe there is significant future value creation potential both through organic growth opportunities, as well as through continued incremental transformational and bolt-on M&A.
New customer relationships in multiple markets
We are excited to partner with the APi team by investing in this highly strategic transaction"
James Lillie further stated, “We are delighted to welcome a combined US$ 800 million investment in perpetual preferred equity from Blackstone and Viking Global Investors. Blackstone has a significant global property portfolio, which as our partner we expect to provide the combined company the opportunity to open new customer relationships in multiple markets.”
David Blitzer, Global Head of Blackstone’s Tactical Opportunities, said “We are excited to partner with the APi team by investing in this highly strategic transaction. We believe the combined companies will be well positioned for long-term success and look forward to supporting their vision to create a global market leader.”
Funding via cash and perpetual preferred equity financing
For the trailing twelve-month period ended March 31, 2021, Chubb had revenue of approximately US$ 2.2 billion and adjusted EBITDA of approximately US$ 213 million. The transaction is expected to close around year-end 2021 and is subject to a consultation process, and standard regulatory approvals. It will be funded through a combination of cash on hand, perpetual preferred equity financing, and debt.
Traka is attending The Security Event 2021, to showcase its latest intelligent solutions in key and equipment management, together with powerful integration capability to improve sector productivity, security and accountability.
On stand 3a/H50, Traka will be presenting its latest generation TrakaWEB software, offering remote administration with the benefits of faulty item exchange, curfew, and fleet management, together with full audit control capability. It can be recorded with instant email notifications linked to specific item movements.
Traka will also be highlighting its online access and integration with business systems, to present increased efficiency, resource, and significant cost savings, without compromising on safety or security.
Smart integration solutions
The Security Event is the perfect opportunity to show how our latest solutions can support this objective"
Steve Bumphrey, Traka UK Managing Director, stated “Every sector has been hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and as we continue on the road to recovery, we are now more dependent on technology than ever before. We all must re-evaluate processes and ensure they are the most efficient and effective strategies in place to deliver essential services.”
He adds, “The Security Event is the perfect opportunity to show how our latest solutions can support this objective. This is not only to demonstrate how our technical innovations such as TrakaWEB can offer powerful user functionality but also show how our systems with the latest integration can assist with access control. Combined, this offers customers smart solutions to keep control of valuable keys and equipment.”
Specialist modular lockers and tablet locker system
On the stand at The Security Event 2021, visitors will be able to see live demonstrations of Traka’s latest system offerings, including specialist modular lockers. These modular lockers can be created as bespoke in design, to manage equipment from warehouse devices, to keep operators moving, or even provide intelligent access to critical medication in hospital, where it is estimated a nurse spends an hour a day managing keys when he/she could be looking after people.
Traka’s dedicated tablet locker system will be used as a part of a dedicated integration zone, showcasing the company’s ability to meet customer needs for a seamless security management system. Traka’s innovative key management portfolio, including scalable L-Touch and S-Touch solutions, offers simple ways to control keys and manage different facilities, including full and compliant audit trail capability of keys and users.
The Security Event 2021
Steve Bumphrey said, “The Security Event presents a long awaited chance for Traka to demonstrate its scalable solutions, and show our support for organizations looking to make sure keys and essential equipment are always ready to use by authorized personnel. With assets processed faster and more productively, teams within all sectors can confidently implement new and assured experiences for the people they serve.”
For more information on Traka or its product range, please visit stand 3aA/H50 at The Security Event 2021, taking place from September 7 - 9, 2021 at The NEC Birmingham, in Birmingham, United Kingdom.
Integrated security manufacturer, TDSi is proud to announce its forthcoming appearance at The Security Event 2021, the major UK commercial, enterprise, and domestic security event, which will take place from September 7 - 9, 2021, at the NEC Birmingham, in Birmingham, United Kingdom.
As one of the first major UK security sector events since the pandemic, TDSi will be proudly showcasing its latest products, including the newly enhanced TDSi GARDiS range of hardware and software systems.
TDSi GARDiS systems on display
Looking ahead to The Security Event 2021, Zara Taylor, the Marketing Manager at TDSi commented, “With the disruptions of 2020, we are particularly excited to be appearing at this year’s event. The key theme on our stand for 2021 is the TDSi GARDiS range, and our expert team will be on hand to demonstrate the various components, integration possibilities, and to discuss the security and practical benefits they deliver.”
TDSi will be at Stand: 3a/D40, at The Security Event 2021, which will feature several ‘pods’ showcasing the new GARDiS range, including the GARDiS Web Embedded Controller, GARDiS Software, and GARDiS Bluetooth Low Energy Reader.
GARDiS Version 2.2 software
TDSi recently unveiled the new Version 2.2 of its powerful GARDiS software
TDSi recently unveiled the new Version 2.2 of its powerful GARDiS software, which added a Cause-and-Effect engine to the PRO version, while all versions have gained additional bespoke user records fields for greater detail and flexibility in applications.
Additionally, GARDiS now has full integration with Thinking Software’s renowned RotaOne Time & Attendance platform, providing a complete overview of staff movements and the security of facilities – something which is particularly useful in a rapidly changing and evolving world.
The Security Event 2021
Zara Taylor stated, “We are debuting a new stand at The Security Event this year which perfectly reflects the exciting new technology that TDSi will be showing. It has been a long time since we have been able to physically meet and interact with visitors at a large UK event, but the NEC is the perfect venue to do this.”
She adds, “Geographically central for many parts of the UK (and beyond) in terms of travel, it presents a friendly and well-organized venue for visitors to make the most of what will be on show, with the peace of mind that all safety precautions will be taken to ensure any risks are kept to a minimum. The TDSi team and I are very much looking forward to welcoming you to Stand: 3a/D40 from 7th-9th September!”
CloudSense, the renowned provider of the world's most powerful Configure, Price, Quote, (CPQ) engine, has announced the appointment of Brian McCann as the new Chief Product Officer (CPO). Brian's addition to the team underlines the company's focus on product innovation across end-to-end revenue operations.
AI, security and core network expert
Brian McCann joins from Nokia Software, where he worked as the Chief Product Officer and Chief Technology Officer
Brian McCann joins from Nokia Software, where he worked as the Chief Product Officer and Chief Technology Officer (CTO), responsible for a wide software product portfolio, including monetization, AI/analytics, operations, security and core network.
Brian has shaped product strategy within market renowned technology companies, such as Oracle, Motorola and Portal Software, for more than 25 years, winning the recognition of industry analysts and commentators within the telecommunications industry.
Innovator in product development
“CloudSense has a tradition of leading the market in terms of product innovation and we are excited to be bringing Brian on board to extend our product vision further. His experience and leadership will play a critical role in driving business growth in our focus vertical markets and positioning us to enter new segments,” said CloudSense’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Jonathan English.
Brian McCann, the Chief Product Officer at CloudSense, said “I am proud and excited to join the very talented CloudSense team. Digital Commerce, CPQ, and Order Management are critical, business-enabling capabilities that allow enterprises to drive successful digital transformation strategies and CloudSense has demonstrated that its platform delivers concrete value to customers in the telecommunications, media and utilities industries.
Brian adds, “I am now looking forward to working closely with those customers to drive new innovations into the CloudSense portfolio that will give them the competitive edge they need.”
Steven Kenny, Axis Communications, looks at the benefits of physical access control systems within smart environments, and how knowledge gaps and dated methods can inhibit adoption.
Physical security is becoming more dynamic and more interconnected, as it evolves. Today’s modern access control solutions are about so much more than simply opening doors, with digitalization bringing multiple business benefits, which would simply not be possible using traditional models.
While the digital transformation of processes and systems was already well underway, across many industries and sectors, it is the transformation of physical security from a standalone, isolated circuit, to a network-enabled, intelligent security solution that brings many benefits to the smart environment.
Yet, with more organizations now looking to bring their physical security provision up to date, there are many considerations that must be addressed to maximize the potential of access control and video surveillance. Not least of which is that connecting physical security devices to a network presents risk, so it is increasingly important for IT teams to play a role in helping to facilitate the secure integration of physical and network technologies, as these two worlds increasingly converge.
Improved access control in smart environments
These urban constructs are capable of reducing waste, driving efficiencies and optimising resources
The smart city offers significant benefits, reflected in the US$ 189 billion that is anticipated to be spent on smart city initiatives globally by 2023. These urban constructs are capable of reducing waste, driving efficiencies, optimizing resources and increasing citizen engagement.
Technology, which is increasingly being incorporated to protect access points within the smart environment, can take many forms. These range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems, using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification, right through to complex networks of thermal cameras, audio speakers and sensors.
Frictionless access control
During the COVID-19 pandemic, frictionless access control has provided an effective ‘hands free’ means of accessing premises, using methods such as QR code readers and facial recognition as credentials to prove identity.
Frictionless access control brings health and safety into the equation, as well as the security of entrances and exits, minimizing the risk of infection, by removing the need to touch shared surfaces. Such systems can be customized and scaled to meet precise requirements. Yet, an increasing integration with open technologies and platforms requires collaboration between the worlds of physical security and IT, in order to be successful.
Barriers to adoption
Traditional suppliers and installers of physical security systems have built up a strong business model around their expertise, service and knowledge. Network connectivity and the IoT (Internet of Things) present a constantly shifting landscape, requiring the traditional physical security vendor to learn the language of IT, of open platforms, IP connectivity and software integration, in order to adapt to market changes and remain relevant.
Many are now beginning to realize that connected network-enabled solutions are here to stay
Those who cannot adapt, and are simply not ready for this changing market, risk being left behind, as the physical security landscape continues to shift and demand continues to increase. With end users and buyers looking for smarter, more integrated and business-focused solutions from their suppliers, it is clear that only those who are prepared will succeed in this space.
Time will not stand still, and many are now beginning to realize that connected network-enabled solutions are here to stay, particularly within smart constructs which rely on such technology by their very nature.
The importance of cyber hygiene
Connecting any device to a network has a degree of risk, and it is, therefore, imperative that any provider not only understands modern connected technologies, but also the steps necessary to protect corporate networks.
Cameras, access control systems and IP audio devices, which have been left unprotected, can potentially become backdoors into a network and used as access points by hackers. These vulnerabilities can be further compromised by the proliferation of connected devices within the Internet of Things (IoT).
While the connection of devices to a network brings many advantages, there is greater potential for these devices to be used against the very business or industry they have been employed to protect when vulnerabilities are exploited.
Cyber security considerations
Cyber security considerations should, therefore, be a key factor in the development and deployment of new security systems. Access control technologies should be manufactured according to recognized cyber security principles, incident reporting and best practices.
It is important to acknowledge that the cyber integrity of a system is only as strong as its weakest link and that any potential source of cyber exposure will ultimately impact negatively on a device’s ability to provide the necessary high levels of physical security.
The future of access control
There is a natural dispensation towards purchasing low-cost solutions
There is a natural dispensation towards purchasing low-cost solutions that are perceived as offering the same value as their more expensive equivalents. While some have taken the decision to implement such solutions, in an attempt to unlock the required benefits, while saving their bottom line, the limited lifespan of these technologies puts a heavier cost and reputational burden onto organizations by their association.
The future of access control, and of physical security as a whole, will, therefore, be dependent on the willingness of suppliers to implement new designs and new ways of thinking, based around high-quality products, and to influence the installers and others in their supply chains to embrace this new world.
Cyber security key to keeping businesses safe
In addition, cyber security considerations are absolutely vital for keeping businesses safe. The integration of cyber secure technologies from trusted providers will provide peace of mind around the safety or corporate networks, and integrity of the deployed technologies.
As we move forward, access control systems will become data collection points and door controllers will become intelligent I/O devices. QR codes for visitor management and biometric face recognition for frictionless access control will increasingly be managed at the edge, as analytics in a camera or sensor.
The future of access control presents an exciting and challenging time for those ready to accept it, to secure it and to help shape it, offering a true opportunity to innovate for a smarter, safer world.
The 2020s will be a wireless decade in access control, says Russell Wagstaff from ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions EMEA. He examines the trends data, and looks beyond mobile keys to brand new security roles for the smartphone.
The benefits of wire-free electronic access control are well rehearsed. They are also more relevant than ever. A wireless solution gives facility managers deeper, more flexible control over who should have access, where and when, because installing, operating and integrating them is easier and less expensive than wiring more doors.
Battery powered locks
Many procurement teams are now aware of these cost advantages, but perhaps not their scale. Research for an ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions (AAOS) benchmarking exercise found installation stage to be the largest contributor to cost reduction. Comparing a typical installation of battery-powered Aperio locks versus wired locks at the same scale, the research projected an 80% saving in installers’ labor costs for customers who go cable-free.
Battery powered locks all consume much less energy than traditional wired locks
Operating costs are also lower for wireless: Battery powered locks all consume much less energy than traditional wired locks, which normally work via magnets connected permanently to electricity. Wireless locks only ‘wake up’ when presented with a credential for which they must make an access decision. AAOS estimated a 70% saving in energy use over a comparable lock’s lifetime.
Find out more about wireless access control at ASSA ABLOY's upcoming June webinar
Deploying wireless locks
In short, every time a business chooses a wireless lock rather than a wired door, they benefit from both installation and operating cost savings. A recent report from IFSEC Global, AAOS and Omdia reveals the extent to which the advantages of wireless are cutting through.
Responses to a large survey of security professionals — end-users, installers, integrators and consultants serving large corporations and small- to medium-sized organizations in education, healthcare, industrial, commercial, infrastructure, retail, banking and other sectors — suggest almost four locations in ten (38%) have now deployed wireless locks as a part or the whole of their access solution. The corresponding data point from AAOS’s 2014 Report was 23%.
Electronic access control
Electronic access control is less dependent than ever on cabling
Without doubt, electronic access control is less dependent than ever on cabling: Even after a year when many investments have been deferred or curtailed, the data reveals fast-growing adoption of wireless locks, technologies and systems.
Is mobile access control — based on digital credentials or ‘virtual keys’ stored on a smartphone — an ideal security technology for this wire-free future? In fact, the same report finds mobile access is growing fast right now. Among those surveyed, 26% of end-users already offer mobile compatibility; 39% plan to roll out mobile access within two years. Before the mid-2020s, around two-thirds of access systems will employ the smartphone in some way.
The smartphone is also convenient for gathering system insights
Driving rapid adoption
What is driving such rapid adoption? The convenience benefits for everyday users are obvious — witness the mobile boom in banking and payments, travel or event ticketing, transport, food delivery and countless more areas of modern life. Access control is a natural fit. If you have your phone, you are already carrying your keys: What could be easier?
IBM forecasts that 1.87 billion people globally will be mobile workers by 2022
Less often discussed are the ways mobile management makes life easier for facility and security managers, too. Among those polled for the new Wireless Access Control Report, almost half (47%) agreed that ‘Mobile was more flexible than physical credentials, and 36% believe that mobile credentials make it easier to upgrade employee access rights at any time.’ IBM forecasts that 1.87 billion people globally will be mobile workers by 2022. Workers in every impacted sector require solutions which can get the job done from anywhere: Access management via smartphone offers this.
Site management device
The smartphone is also convenient for gathering system insights. For example, one new reporting and analytics tool for CLIQ key-based access control systems uses an app to collect, visualise and evaluate access data. Security system data could contribute to business success. The app’s clear, visual layout helps managers to instantly spot relevant trends, anomalies or patterns. It’s simple to export, to share insights across the business.
Reinvented for learning — not just as a ‘key’ or site management device — the phone will help businesses make smarter, data-informed decisions. The smartphone will also play a major role in security — and everything else — for an exciting new generation of smart buildings. These buildings will derive their intelligence from interoperability. Over 90% of the report’s survey respondents highlighted the importance of integration across building functions including access control, CCTV, alarm and visitor management systems.
Genuinely seamless integration
They offer greater peace of mind than proprietary solutions which ‘lock you in’ for the long term
Yet in practise, stumbling blocks remain on the road to deeper, genuinely seamless integration. More than a quarter of those polled felt held back by a lack of solutions developed to open standards. ‘Open standards are key for the momentum behind the shift towards system integration,’ notes the Report.
As well as being more flexible, open solutions are better futureproofed. Shared standards ensure investments can be made today with confidence that hardware and firmware may be built on seamlessly in the future. They offer greater peace of mind than proprietary solutions which ‘lock you in’ for the long term.
Open solutions and mobile management are critical to achieving the goals which end-users in every vertical are chasing: scalability, flexibility, sustainability, cost-efficiency and convenience.
Automatic gates remain an increasingly popular security choice for family homes, business premises or public buildings – anywhere that full control over access is needed.
While there is much to consider for installers when advising clients on the right solution for their property, from the size, weight and cost of a gate system, it’s useful to be aware of the latest developments in the market, as this can help to find the right option to fit their needs.
The need for speed
Gates can be automated to either swing or to slide open, and there are many factors to take into consideration, when advising on which option to use. However, swing gate motors tend to be slower than the speeds achievable for sliding gates, which means the latter are usually more popular, especially for commercial sites where timing can be among the more important factors.
One of the most recent developments in the sliding gates market is the introduction of faster motors
One of the most recent developments in the sliding gates market is the introduction of faster motors, such as those from Bft Automation, which allow for opening and closing at a quicker speed than has previously been achievable.
Fast authorized access control
From a security point of view, the ability to allow people and goods in and out of a property at a quicker pace reduces the risk of unauthorized entry, while waiting for a gate to close – an important consideration in both commercial and residential contexts.
Other benefits of a faster motor include reduced waiting times. This can be particularly useful for properties in busy areas, where a vehicle could risk blocking traffic, while waiting to turn into a site controlled by a slower gate.
Also, a faster motor could potentially reduce the risk of an accident from vehicles entering a property at speed. For example, this might happen if someone was making their first visit to a property situated off a fast road in an unfamiliar area.
Beyond these practical considerations, in today’s fast-paced world, people aren’t as used to having to wait for things and this applies to the time it takes to get in and out of their own property. So, security benefits aside, faster motors are likely to be more appealing for clients who have sliding gates fitted to their domestic property and who prioritize convenience.
The choice of which of the new faster motors to use will be impacted by a number of factors, including the weight of the gates. Essentially, the lighter the gate is the higher the speed achievable. And, as always, it’s important to make sure that any installation complies with safety regulations.
Intelligent torque management systems
A further development in access control technology includes intelligent torque management systems
A further development in access control technology includes intelligent torque management systems, which update the level of torque required to perform the gate’s operation, allowing it to work at the optimum level, regardless of weather conditions, temperature or the degree of wear and tear on the device.
Depending on the typical weather conditions experienced at the site and the anticipated frequency of use, it’s worth looking at options that take these factors into account.
Importance of security rights
In some scenarios, it’s important for particular individuals to have security rights. In which case, there are motors available that come with personalized keys, which are unique, providing an additional level of security.
Installers often face the challenge of fitting gate motors in confined spaces, potentially making for a time consuming and technically demanding task.
When you only have a small space to work with, simple details can go a long way to helping you. For example, by putting the fastening screws on the front of a motor’s casing, installation and maintenance are easier and more convenient, even in particularly compact areas.
Working with suppliers that offer more than just a manual means you’ll have access to advice and support on how new products work in practice and what you need to consider before advising on an installation.
A new generation of video cameras is poised to boost capabilities dramatically at the edge of the IP network, including more powerful artificial intelligence (AI) and higher resolutions, and paving the way for new applications that would have previously been too expensive or complex.
Technologies at the heart of the coming new generation of video cameras are Ambarella’s newest systems on chips (SoCs). Ambarella’s CV5S and CV52S product families are bringing a new level of on-camera AI performance and integration to multi-imager and single-imager IP cameras. Both of these SoCs are manufactured in the ‘5 nm’ manufacturing process, bringing performance improvements and power savings, compared to the previous generation of SoCs manufactured at ‘10nm’.
CV5S and CV52S AI-powered SoCs
The CV5S, designed for multi-imager cameras, is able to process, encode and perform advanced AI on up to four imagers at 4Kp30 resolution, simultaneously and at less than 5 watts. This enables multi-headed camera designs with up to four 4K imagers looking at different portions of a scene, as well as very high-resolution, single-imager cameras of up to 32 MP resolution and beyond.
The CV52S, designed for single-imager cameras with very powerful onboard AI, is the next-generation of the company’s successful CV22S mainstream 4K camera AI chip. This new SoC family quadruples the AI processing performance, while keeping the same low power consumption of less than 3 watts for 4Kp60 encoding with advanced AI processing.
Faster and ubiquitous AI capabilities
Ambarella’s newest AI vision SoCs for security, the CV5S and CV52S, are competitive solutions"
“Security system designers desire higher resolutions, increasing channel counts, and ever faster and more ubiquitous AI capabilities,” explains John Lorenz, Senior Technology and Market Analyst, Computing, at Yole Développement (Yole), a French market research firm.
John Lorenz adds, “Ambarella’s newest AI vision SoCs for security, the CV5S and CV52S, are competitive solutions for meeting the growing demands of the security IC (integrated circuit) sector, which our latest report forecasts to exceed US$ 4 billion by 2025, with two-thirds of that being chips with AI capabilities.”
Edge AI vision processors
Ambarella’s new CV5S and CV52S edge AI vision processors enable new classes of cameras that would not have been possible in the past, with a single SoC architecture. For example, implementing a 4x 4K multi-imager with AI would have traditionally required at least two SoCs (at least one for encoding and one for AI), and the overall power consumption would have made those designs bulky and prohibitively expensive.
By reducing the number of required SoCs, the CV5S enables advanced camera designs such as AI-enabled 4x 4K imagers at price points much lower than would have previously been possible. “What we are usually trying to do with our SoCs is to keep the price points similar to the previous generations, given that camera retail prices tend to be fairly fixed,” said Jerome Gigot, Ambarella's Senior Director of Marketing.
4K multi-imager cameras
“However, higher-end 4K multi-imager cameras tend to retail for thousands of dollars, and so even though there will be a small premium on the SoC for the 2X improvement in performance, this will not make a significant impact to the final MSRP of the camera,” adds Jerome Gigot.
In addition, the overall system cost might go down, Gigot notes, compared to what could be built today because there is no longer a need for external chips to perform AI, or extra components for power dissipation.
The new chips will be available in the second half of 2021, and it typically takes about 12 to 18 months for Ambarella’s customers (camera manufacturers) to produce final cameras. Therefore, the first cameras, based on these new SoCs, should hit the market sometime in the second half of 2022.
Reference boards for camera manufacturers
The software on these new SoCs is an evolution of our unified Linux SDK"
As with Ambarella’s previous generations of edge AI vision SoCs for security, the company will make available reference boards to camera manufacturers soon, allowing them to develop their cameras based on the new CV5S and CV52S SoC families.
“The software on these new SoCs is an evolution of our unified Linux SDK that is already available on our previous generations SoCs, which makes the transition easy for our customers,” said Jerome Gigot.
Better crime detection
Detecting criminals in a crowd, using face recognition and/or license plate recognition, has been a daunting challenge for security, and one the new chips will help to address.
“Actually, these applications are one of the main reasons why Ambarella is introducing these two new SoC families,” said Jerome Gigot.
Typically, resolutions of 4K and higher have been a smaller portion of the security market, given that they came at a premium price tag for the high-end optics, image sensor and SoC. Also, the cost and extra bandwidth of storing and streaming 4K video were not always worth it for the benefit of just viewing video at higher resolution.
4K AI processing on-camera
The advent of on-camera AI at 4K changes the paradigm. By enabling 4K AI processing on-camera, smaller objects at longer distances can now be detected and analyzed without having to go to a server, and with much higher detail and accuracy compared to what can be done on a 2 MP or 5 MP cameras.
This means that fewer false alarms will be generated, and each camera will now be able to cover a longer distance and wider area, offering more meaningful insights without necessarily having to stream and store that 4K video to a back-end server. “This is valuable, for example, for traffic cameras mounted on top of high poles, which need to be able to see very far out and identify cars and license plates that are hundreds of meters away,” said Jerome Gigot.
The advent of on-camera AI at 4K changes the paradigm
Enhanced video analytics and wider coverage
“Ambarella’s new CV5S and CV52S SoCs truly allow the industry to take advantage of higher resolution on-camera for better analytics and wider coverage, but without all the costs typically incurred by having to stream high-quality 4K video out 24/7 to a remote server for offline analytics,” said Jerome Gigot.
He adds, “So, next-generation cameras will now be able to identify more criminals, faces and license plates, at longer distances, for an overall lower cost and with faster response times by doing it all locally on-camera.”
Deployment in retail applications
Retail environments can be some of the toughest, as the cameras may be looking at hundreds of people at once
Retail applications are another big selling point. Retail environments can be some of the toughest, as the cameras may be looking at hundreds of people at once (e.g., in a mall), to provide not only security features, but also other business analytics, such as foot traffic and occupancy maps that can be used later to improve product placement.
The higher resolution and higher AI performance, enabled by the new Ambarella SoCs, provide a leap forward in addressing those scenarios. In a store setup, a ceiling-mounted camera with four 4K imagers can simultaneously look at the cashier line on one side of the store, sending alerts when a line is getting too long and a new cashier needs to be deployed, while at the same time looking at the entrance on the other side of the store, to count the people coming in and out.
This leaves two additional 4K imagers for monitoring specific product aisles and generating real-time business analytics.
Use in cashier-less stores
Another retail application is a cashier-less store. Here, a CV5S or CV52S-based camera mounted on the ceiling will have enough resolution and AI performance to track goods, while the customer grabs them and puts them in their cart, as well as to automatically track which customer is purchasing which item.
In a warehouse scenario, items and boxes moving across the floor could also be followed locally, on a single ceiling-mounted camera that covers a wide area of the warehouse. Additionally, these items and boxes could be tracked across the different imagers in a multi-headed camera setup, without the video having to be sent to a server to perform the tracking.
Updating on-camera AI networks
Another feature of Ambarella’s SoCs is that their on-camera AI networks can be updated on-the-fly, without having to stop the video recording and without losing any video frames.
So, for example in the case of a search for a missing vehicle, the characteristics of that missing vehicle (make, model, color, license plate) can be sent to a cluster of cameras in the general area, where the vehicle is thought to be missing, and all those cameras can be automatically updated to run a live search on that specific vehicle.
If any of the cameras gets a match, a remote operator can be notified and receive a picture, or even a live video feed of the scene.
Efficient traffic management
With the CV52S edge AI vision SoC, those decisions can be made locally at each intersection by the camera itself
Relating to traffic congestion, most big cities have thousands of intersections that they need to monitor and manage. Trying to do this from one central location is costly and difficult, as there is so much video data to process and analyze, in order to make those traffic decisions (to control the traffic lights, reverse lanes, etc.).
With the CV52S edge AI vision SoC, those decisions can be made locally at each intersection by the camera itself. The camera would then take actions autonomously (for example, adjust traffic-light timing) and only report a status update to the main traffic control center. So now, instead of having one central location trying to manage 1,000 intersections, a city can have 1,000 smart AI cameras, each managing its own location and providing updates and metadata to a central server.
Privacy is always a concern with video. In this case, doing AI on-camera is inherently more private than streaming the video to a server for analysis. Less data transmission means fewer points of entry for a hacker trying to access the video.
On Ambarella’s CV5S and CV52S SoCs, the video can be analyzed locally and then discarded, with just a signature or metadata of the face being used to find a match. No actual video needs to be stored or transmitted, which ensures total privacy.
In addition, the chips contain a very secure hardware cyber security block, including OTP memory, Arm TrustZones, DRAM scrambling and I/O virtualization. This makes it very difficult for a hacker to replace the firmware on the camera, providing another level of security and privacy at the system level.
Another privacy feature is the concept of privacy masking. This feature enables portions of the video (say a door or a window) to be blocked out, before being encoded in the video stream. The blocked portions of the scene are not present in the recorded video, thus providing a privacy option for cameras that are facing private areas.
“With on-camera AI, each device becomes its own smart endpoint, and can be reconfigured at will to serve the specific physical security needs of its installation,” said Jerome Gigot, adding “The possibilities are endless, and our mission as an SoC maker is really to provide a powerful and easy-to-use platform, complete with computer-vision tools, that enable our customers and their partners to easily deploy their own AI software on-camera.”
Physical security in parking lots
With a CV5S or CV52S AI-enabled camera, the camera will be able to cover a much wider portion of the parking lot
One example is physical security in a parking lot. A camera today might be used to just record part of the parking lot, so that an operator can go back and look at the video if a car were broken into or some other incident occurred.
With a CV5S or CV52S AI-enabled camera, first of all, the camera will be able to cover a much wider portion of the parking lot. Additionally, it will be able to detect the license plates of all the cars going in and out, to automatically bill the owners.
If there is a special event, the camera can be reprogrammed to identify VIP vehicles and automatically redirect them to the VIP portion of the lot, while reporting to the entrance station or sign how many parking spots are available. It can even tell the cars approaching the lot where to go.
Advantages of using edge AI vision SoCs
Jerome Gigot said, “The possibilities are endless and they span across many verticals. The market is primed to embrace these new capabilities. Recent advances in edge AI vision SoCs have brought about a period of change in the physical security space. Companies that would have, historically, only provided security cameras, are now getting into adjacent verticals such as smart retail, smart cities and smart buildings.”
He adds, “These changes are providing a great opportunity for all the camera makers and software providers to really differentiate themselves by providing full systems that offer a new level of insights and efficiencies to, not only the physical security manager, but now also the store owner and the building manager.”
He adds, “All of these new applications are extremely healthy for the industry, as they are growing the available market for cameras, while also increasing their value and the economies of scale they can provide. Ambarella is looking forward to seeing all the innovative products that our customers will build with this new generation of SoCs.”
The city of Baltimore has banned the use of facial recognition systems by residents, businesses and the city government (except for police). The criminalization in a major U.S. city of an important emerging technology in the physical security industry is an extreme example of the continuing backlash against facial recognition throughout the United States.
Facial recognition technology ban
Several localities – from Portland, Oregon, to San Francisco, from Oakland, California, to Boston – have moved to limit use of the technology, and privacy groups have even proposed a national moratorium on use of facial recognition.
The physical security industry, led by the Security Industry Association (SIA), vigorously opposed the ban in Baltimore, urging a measured approach and ‘more rational policymaking’ that preserve the technology’s value while managing any privacy or other concerns.
Physical security industry opposes ban
In such cases, it is local businesses and residents who stand to lose the most"
“Unfortunately, an outright ban on facial recognition continues a distressing pattern in which the clear value of this technology is ignored,” said SIA’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Don Erickson, adding “In such cases, it is local businesses and residents who stand to lose the most.”
At the national level, a letter to US President Biden from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Coalition asserts the need for a national dialog over the appropriate use of facial recognition technology and expresses concern about ‘a blanket moratorium on federal government use and procurement of the technology’. (The coalition includes Security Industry Association (SIA) and other industry groups.)
The negativity comes at a peak moment for facial recognition and other biometric technologies, which saw an increase of interest for a variety of public and business applications, during the COVID-19 pandemic’s prioritization to improve public health hygiene and to promote ‘contactless’ technologies.
Prohibition on banks, retailers and online sellers
The ordinance in Baltimore prohibits banks from using facial recognition to enhance consumer security in financial transactions. It prevents retailers from accelerating checkout lines with contactless payment and prohibits remote online identity document verification, which is needed by online sellers or gig economy workers, according to the Security Industry Association (SIA).
At a human level, SIA points out that the prohibition of facial recognition undermines the use of customized accessibility tools for disabled persons, including those suffering with blindness, memory loss or prosopagnosia (face blindness).
Ban out of line with current state of facial recognition
Addressing the Baltimore prohibition, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation reacted to the measure as ‘shockingly out of line with the current state of facial recognition technology and its growing adoption in many sectors of the economy’.
Before Baltimore’s decision to target facial recognition, Portland, Oregon, had perhaps the strictest ban, prohibiting city government agencies and private businesses from using the technology on the city’s grounds. San Francisco was the first U.S. city to ban the technology, with Boston, Oakland; Cambridge, Massachusetts; and Berkeley, California, among others, following suit.
Police and federal units can use biometrics
Unlike other bans, the Baltimore moratorium does not apply to police uses
Unlike other bans, the Baltimore moratorium does not apply to police uses, but targets private uses of the technology. It also includes a one-year ‘sunset’ clause that requires city council approval for an extension. The measure carves out an exemption for use of biometrics in access control systems.
However, violations of the measure are punishable by 12 months in jail. The law also establishes a task force to evaluate the cost and effectiveness of surveillance tools.
Transparency in public sector use of facial recognition
Currently, the state of Maryland controls the Baltimore Police Department, so the city council does not have authority to ban police use of facial recognition, which has been a human rights concern driving the bans in other jurisdictions. A measure to return local control of police to the city could pass before the year lapses.
SIA advocates transparency in public-sector applications of facial recognition in identity verification, security and law enforcement investigative applications. SIA’s CEO, Don Erickson stated, “As public sector uses are more likely to be part of processes with consequential outcomes, it is especially important for transparency and sound policies to accompany government applications.”
Following its recent acquisition, Vidsys will continue to operate, now as an ‘An ARES Security Company’. The Vidsys brand is known worldwide for its PSIM (physical security information management) solution and the acquisition will accelerate the next generation of products that incorporate Artificial Intelligence (AI) to enhance their value to Vidsys clients and the overall market.
ARES Security Corporation has developed and deployed security and public safety software solutions for the past 20 years, solving complex physical security challenges. Their AVERT security software solution supports the full lifecycle of physical security operations: risk and technology assessment and design, training, and intelligent real-time incident response.
AVERT security software
AVERT security software helps clients by increasing security effectiveness and reducing cost
AVERT security software helps clients by increasing security effectiveness and reducing cost. Clients are in many market segments including Corporate, Military, Government, Power, Data Centers, Transportation and Ports. Vidsys’ PSIM will immediately be improved by incorporating AVERT C2 (Command & Control), allowing clients access to expanded capabilities and an advanced technical roadmap.
“Over time we will migrate the Vidsys technology to our state-of-the-art, multi-tenant SaaS architecture that includes secure, multi-site data sharing, an updated library of connectors, and integration to the AVERT digital twin, artificial intelligence/machine learning and automation capability,” said Ben Eazzetta, ARES Security Corporation’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
Technical roadmap for upgrading to AI-PSIM platform
“We are a client-centric company, and we will continue to support Vidsys clients,” stated Ben Eazzetta, adding “We will focus initial efforts towards closing any required and promised capability gaps and offer a significantly improved technical roadmap for the platform to be upgraded to AI-PSIM.”
Additional AVERT products will be made available to Vidsys clients in a ‘cost-effective way’. They include technology for assessment and design, virtual tabletop and virtual reality training and enhanced AI and robotics capability surrounding the digital twin. A ‘digital twin’ is a digital representation of a physical object.
Rapid incident response and robotic sentries interfaces
ARES/Vidsys solution offers capabilities with extremely high levels of automation for rapid incident response
ARES has a strong market position in several verticals that require a robust and automated next-generation AI-PSIM. The ARES/Vidsys solution offers capabilities with extremely high levels of automation that enable rapid incident response and incorporate advanced features, such as interfaces to robotic sentries.
“These capabilities, along with a more automated deployment process, will allow Vidsys to scale their acquisition of customers across key verticals in which ARES is already active. This automated deployment process will also open new opportunities to work with system integrators who have shied away from PSIM projects in recent years,” stated Ben Eazzetta.
Optimizing security operations
ARES believes the physical security market is underserved by technology that optimizes operations. Ben Eazzetta adds, “All of our products are designed to optimize security operation, and the acquisition of Vidsys allows us to accelerate the development of the next generation PSIM that is adaptive and intelligent, powered by AVERT’s AI, and Modeling and Simulation system.”
Vidsys pioneered PSIM in the security industry and created a robust library of connectors, providing an integrated real-time incident response system powered by a rules engine. Together, the AVERT/Vidsys solution seeks to transform the way security operations centers (SOCs) operate and respond to emergencies.
Vidsys pioneered PSIM in the security industry and created a robust library of connectors
Managing security at multiple sites
Ben Eazzetta said, “There’s no denying that some in the security industry see PSIM as a four-letter word. But PSIM exists because it meets a need in the security operations center that cannot be met by either video management or incident management systems. It is critical that PSIM evolves to meet the rapidly changing demands of enterprise clients.”
He adds, “Our clients need to manage security at multiple sites, each with different security plans and threats, they need adaptive rules engines to manage complex incidents and emergency responses, and they need automation to seamlessly command and control all security assets, including robotic assets.”
Flexible and intelligent software
Future of command-and-control will need to be flexible, intelligent software with extremely high levels of automation
“The future of command-and-control will need to be flexible, intelligent software with extremely high levels of automation that enables very rapid incident response and incorporates advanced capabilities such as interfaces to robotic sentries,” said Ben Eazzetta.
He adds, “To achieve this, we are replacing the brittle, difficult-to-configure rules engine of today’s PSIM with machine learning and AI capabilities that can produce automated/optimized responses or recommendations in near real time.”
SaaS-enabled and remotely hosted system
The systems will be SaaS-enabled, remotely hosted and easily configurable to reduce the cost and time of deployments for large enterprise implementations and easily supported by end-users, and system integrators.
In a post-Covid-19 world, it is critical that enterprise security software solutions be adaptive, intelligent, automated and offer the ability for disparate teams to share information and collaborate in a meaningful way, while responding to incidents and emergencies in real-time. The ARES/Vidsys offering is a lifecycle solution that meets the needs of enterprise security operations.
Next-generation of AI-PSIM
“ARES has always pushed the needle of what is possible with our AVERT solution, ever since development of our digital twin technology began in 1999 to protect our nation’s nuclear stockpiles,” said Ben Eazzetta, adding “Today, we continue to innovate with the next generation of AI-PSIM.”
So what’s ahead for ARES and Vidsys in 2021? “A lot of Zoom calls!” laughs Eazzetta, adding “We are excited to leverage the decades of hard work that both teams have put into our solutions. We all realize the fantastic opportunity we have been given to create a next-generation AI-PSIM and to open new markets for all of our products and solutions.”
He adds, “Combining the two companies will lead to improved development/support capability and significantly improved roadmaps for our clients. We will provide immediate ROI for clients by lowering deployment costs and leveraging the entire suite of products to provide more immediate value while continuing to deliver as promised, like ARES always does.”
Hyde Park is a premium residential complex of BI Group, a renowned construction holding company in Kazakhstan. This high-end project is located in one of the elite and ecologically safe neighborhoods of Almaty, combining modern solutions and quality services with elegant British architecture.
In addition to the traditional British mansion features, one of the main attractive qualities of this residential complex is its high level of security, thanks to a range of modern and smart solutions made by Yasar LLP (Yasar Group), which includes the intelligent residential solution from Dahua Technology.
Dahua Intelligent Residential Solution
The Dahua Intelligent Residential Solution provides an interconnected platform for property managers
While bringing high-quality living experience to residents, the Dahua Intelligent Residential Solution provides an interconnected platform for property managers, to simplify operations and improve management efficiency in a visual way.
To help Yasar LLP achieve their tasks, which include ensuring the safety of the residents, keeping the property of the apartment owners safe, as well as home owners’ requests for visual intercom with visitors, the project must be able to provide a video intercom system that supports both audio and video, integrates with third-party smart home apps, supports IP camera integration and preview, and allows several door opening methods, etc.
Video intercom system with two-way audio support
It required high-performance products with modern video technologies and quality services, which were successfully fulfilled and accomplished by Dahua products and solutions.
Based on the client’s requirements, the Dahua team customized a complete solution including the successful development of a 10-inch Android indoor monitor that supports two-way audio intercom, video recording, remote door opening, message features, as well as installation and access to third-party smart home apps.
Android indoor monitor installed
This indoor monitor offers high brightness, high contrast and high sound intensity. It can provide a clear display interface, even in a strong-light environment and transmit clear two-way intercom sound, despite noise interference.
In addition, the indoor monitor is equipped with dual network cards that can work at the same time. The wired network card is used to access the video intercom system, while the wireless network card is for third-party smart home systems.
Flexible door opening options
In the Hyde Park residential area, two different parking areas are provided for residents and their guests
In order to bring modern and high-tech living experience to home owners, the solution provides flexible door opening options, including cards, fingerprint recognition, password, etc., in case they forgot to bring their key or access card. Alternatively, they can also open the door remotely using the mobile app or enter via facial recognition.
In the Hyde Park residential area, two different parking areas are provided for residents and their guests. These parking areas are both under constant round-the-clock monitoring using the Dahua ANPR camera. At the same time, the camera’s real-time recognition algorithm allows vehicles to enter and exit automatically, without stopping and waiting, greatly improving traffic efficiency.
24/7 uninterrupted video surveillance
Public areas and common spaces are comprehensively protected by a combination of 2 MP IR Mini Dome Network Camera, 2 MP WDR IR Mini Bullet Network Camera, 4MP IR Mini Dome Network Camera and other equipment. At the same time, the Dahua DSS platform was selected for centralized management, operation, and maintenance.
The Dahua Intelligent Residential Solution provides a highly secured and comfortable community for Hyde Park residential complex. It has 24/7 uninterrupted video surveillance, covering the whole residential area, including public areas, playground, and lobbies.
The Dahua Intelligent Residential Solution provides a highly secured community for Hyde Park residential complex
It enables the communication between the residents and security system operators, as well as touchless access control to parking lots and residential buildings in addition to card, password, and a physical lock.
Advanced AI technology
Now, residents can enjoy a smart and convenient living experience brought by advanced AI technology, make video conversations with guests, call security personnel for help, or manage all smart home control systems remotely.
The Dahua indoor monitor integrates a visual intercom system and smart home system, which simplifies the tedious configuration process and saves input costs for integrators.
Remote and visual management of properties
Security guards at the entrance are not needed anymore, to manage entering and exiting vehicles, which saves labor costs, reduces the waiting time, and improves traffic efficiency. Moreover, it assists remote and visual management of properties, and improves the services and facilities offered in the residential community.
“Thanks to smart residential solution of Dahua Technology, the safety and functionality of this residential complex has become more efficient. The cameras of the entire residential complex meet the latest innovations and instantly transmit data to the central observation point,” said Bagdan, a Yasar LLP Executive Employee.
Retrofitting modern security to old or protected heritage buildings used to be an installer’s nightmare. Wiring could be complex, with damage to ancient architecture or door hardware a constant risk. Now, wireless access control devices that match the protection and durability of wired technology, have made it straightforward.
For a facilities manager, the security remit for any building or space is broadly the same. People and assets must be kept safe. Access to the most sensitive areas should be carefully filtered. Intrusion has to be stopped. Yet, installation, wiring and larger modifications present a unique set of challenges in an older building.
Battery-powered access control
Battery-powered access control devices can add equivalent features wirelessly, at lower and more predictable cost, because no cabling is required around the door. In a wireless system, locks for doors, cabinets and other openings communicate over-the-air with a network of hubs. These may be placed close to existing mains power sources, minimizing disruption to the building fabric.
Software makes the access decision, which is communicated back to locks via the hub
Software makes the access decision, which is communicated back to locks via the hub. Everything happens almost instantly and wire free. In an old building or structure, choosing to wire for door security opens up not only expense but also uncertainty. Indeed, when working under old floors and inside walls, which are 100 years or more old, surprises are guaranteed. At the installation stage, big surprises can be very expensive.
Wireless access control cylinders
Aesthetics is another concern. Wireless access control cylinders, for example, offer durable, certified electronic security paired with a minimal visual impact.
At a heritage property, low-profile security solutions are a must. In addition, replacing mechanical locks with wireless electronic door devices reduces the manual workload involved in handling and tracking physical keys — saving time and money for property managers.
Retrofitting 21st-century locks to a 16th-century building
In updating access control for one school property in Spain, installers faced precisely these challenges. The Colegio Diocesano Santo Domingo in Orihuela is more than just a school. Its historic buildings date back to the 1500s. An on-site museum needs protection from the same access system. This is a heritage site, as well as a place of learning.
Hence, the brief for a new access system required minimizing disruption on two fronts. The college buildings are a Resource of Cultural Interest and on Spain’s heritage registry. Hence, they must not be damaged. School leaders wanted to avoid disturbance to everyday learning. Wireless locks were the answer.
Wireless locks installed
“In addition to the main entrances and classrooms, access to private spaces such as lifts, offices, staff rooms, the church, the museum, the library and the IT room is constantly monitored,” said the school’s IT Manager, Francisco Fernández Soriano.
Francisco adds, “Thanks to our SMARTair devices installed at more than 300 doors, the security team can find out who has accessed which space and when, at any time. This increases security for children and for staff because no unauthorized people can enter the school.”
Installation of the school’s new SMARTair system demanded little work
Installation of the school’s new SMARTair system demanded little work. Some doors are 500 years old, so major alterations were not possible. ASSA ABLOY’s SMARTair door devices are easily fitted without drilling or wires.
To install a SMARTair cylinder, for example, a professional simply replaces the existing mechanical cylinder with the battery-powered SMARTair device. “The system was installed without a hitch and also without any disruption to classes,” confirms Fernández Soriano.
Flexibility for school and care home security
“At the Vejle Friskole in Denmark, key management had been eating up a very long time, approximately 5 hours a week,” explains Henrik Kækel, the school’s Technical Service Officer.
Now, mechanical keys have also been replaced by a wireless access control system. More than 80 doors and cabinets around the school are secured with SMARTair locks. At a historic property like Vejle Friskole, the customer required that devices were easy and unobtrusive to retrofit.
SMARTair locks installed at Vejle Friskole
“It was really bad [before] because we had big problems with keys that were lost,” said Henrik Kækel, adding “There was a lot of work on keying in and handing out.” Today, Vejle Friskole staff spends around 5 minutes a week managing their access system.”
Henrik adds, “It's incredibly easy to figure out and it takes 1 minute to code a student.” Even managing the leasing of school buildings for non-school events is simple and secure. Facilities staff issue digital credentials for the duration of an event, then cancel them immediately afterwards via the software, with no concerns that someone may have copied a physical key.
Electronic locking system
Pamplona’s Casa de la Misericordia, in Spain, also switched their century-old building from mechanical to electronic locking
Pamplona’s Casa de la Misericordia, in Spain, also switched their century-old building from mechanical to electronic locking. To meet the day-to-day care needs of over 500 residents, they had a specific set of demands for a new access system.
Real-time control over the premises was essential. “In a residence like ours it is critical to have real-time management that allows us to interact with a door at any time,” explains Ernesto Serra, Facility Manager at the Casa de la Misericordia.
Advanced wireless technology
The system also needed to be flexible and expandable, so it could be installed in two phases. Advanced wireless technology suited to retrofitting in an old building was another must-have as this 1930s building has large doors and walls up to 1 m thick.
“A wireless solution that allows us to install access control without wiring up the buildings is a big advantage, the system has adapted to our present and future needs,” said Ernesto Serra.
The nerve center at Miami International Airport (MIA) is its Airport Operations Center (AOC), which operates around the clock, monitoring activity, responding to safety and security incidents, disseminating information and responding to requests from stakeholders throughout the airport.
Incident logging at the AOC
An essential daily task for the AOC team is incident logging, with approximately 70 detailed logs being created each day, and that number is set to rise, as a result of internal process changes within the department.
Rupen Philloura is the Director of Terminal Operations & AOC at Miami International Airport and he explains, “The MLS logging system was a 25-year-old custom-built application. It was familiar for our operators to use, but it was unwieldy, unreliable, and inefficient. With logging being such a critical and growing aspect of our day-today operations, we needed to upgrade to a state-of-the-art unified platform.”
Situator enterprise incident management system
The platform chosen by the airport was the renowned enterprise incident management system, Situator, from Qognify
The platform chosen by the airport was the renowned enterprise incident management system, Situator, from Qognify, a company whose solutions are trusted by airports around the world. Miami itself was already working with the company, using its NiceVision video management system (VMS) and analytics solutions across its highly distributed video surveillance system.
Currently, the AOC has six Situator-powered stations from which operators monitor the airports Honeywell/EBI fire alarm and Matrix access control systems, as well as its extensive surveillance camera network.
Dynamic form functionality
Rupen Philloura describes the process, stating “When an alert is raised, the operator must follow a strict set of procedures for that specific event, this might simply be resetting an alarm remotely, or the dispatch of maintenance personnel. Incidents and subsequent actions need to be accurately documented for regulatory compliance purposes, but also to help us to learn and improve how we deal with incidents and events.”
The need to manually enter all details has been replaced by the dynamic form functionality within Situator. It automatically populates and logs specific information relating to that incident, saving operators valuable time, and ensuring every log is of a consistently high standard.
End-to-end accounts and improved logging
Rupen Philloura further stated, “Together with the input of the operator, we are assured that the logs we generate and store are comprehensive end-to-end accounts, which can be quickly and reliably searched, retrieved and reviewed.”
The improved logging has also had a noticeable impact on business continuity and operational efficiency, as well as providing an additional layer of protection to the airport from a regulatory standpoint. With the AOC operating a three-shift pattern, it is vitally important that change overs can be completed swiftly and nothing is overlooked.
Rupen Philloura adds, “When the next shift logs on to Situator they have instant situational awareness, there is no lag in productivity. They can see what has happened and what requires their immediate attention. During their shift they no longer need to repeatedly log into multiple systems to access information. It is all there on the screen at their station.”
Reduced response time to incidents
The success of Situator within the AOC has led the airport to begin exploiting its strength as a powerful platform
Situator has also reduced the response time to incidents, such as door alarms, as well as access requests from tenants and airport employees, by automating the interaction with the Matrix system. With the old MLS system, both use cases needed to be handled manually.
The success of Situator within the AOC has led the airport to begin exploiting its strength as a powerful platform, with higher levels of task automation, ad-hoc forms, and reporting, as well as integration with airport-specific and non-specific subsystems (made easier by the API driven Situator), such as its access control system and surveillance cameras.
Support for facilities management
It is also evaluating its ability to support the facilities management team in ensuring the statutory maintenance of its extensive network of elevators and moving walkways.
Mike Bryant is Computer Services’ Sr. Manager at Miami-Dade Aviation Department and he has been impressed not only by the reliability that the web-based Situator is providing, (demonstrated by a drop in support calls from the AOC since the implementation), but also its future potential.
Enhanced Airport safety and security
Mike Bryant said, “With Situator, we have a platform that we can evolve to positively impact the operations, maintenance, compliance, safety and security throughout our airport. It has opened up possibilities to integrate systems, solve problems and make improvements, without needing to make further investments in standalone solutions.”
Rupen Philloura concludes, “Every airport needs a robust, reliable and easy to use logging solution and for MIA it is one of the greatest strengths of Situator. It gives us complete situational awareness regarding when and how an event transpired, who responded, how, and the result. This insight improves our decision-making and feeds a continual cycle of improvement.”
Rapid aging population, high healthcare costs, and physician shortages are creating an increasing demand for care at home, especially for seniors with long-term health conditions.
The GX-Cubic2 Series Smart Care Medical Alarm from Climax Technology Co., Ltd. (Climax), features an LCD display that shows clock time, temperature, GSM signal strength, and sensor faults, to keep users fully informed at all times.
GX Smart Care Medical Alarm
GX Smart Care Medical Alarm is an all-in-one wellness and personal safety medical alarm solution
GX Smart Care Medical Alarm is an all-in-one wellness and personal safety medical alarm solution, bridging medical health monitoring and emergency alarm, to keep seniors safe in their own homes.
GX is compatible with Bluetooth medical devices, like blood glucose/blood pressure monitors, pulse oximeters, etc., to track medical data and remote monitoring directly from caregivers/physicians, and also has telecare alarm features, including voice recognition, emergency monitoring, inactivity monitoring, voice control, and home automation capabilities, in order to assist seniors to have a more secure and healthy living.
Some of the major features of the GX-Cubic2 Series include:
Bluetooth Medical Device Pairing
GX is compatible with Bluetooth Medical devices, like blood pressure/blood glucose monitors, pulse oximeters, thermometers, etc., to track health and medical data, and allow care-givers/physicians to remote monitor and provide treatment as needed.
Smart Home Automation
ZigBee, Z-Wave, and/or Bluetooth automation devices incorporated into GX creates a smarter and safer home, by auto-turning on hallway lights at night, to decrease the chance of a fall, or auto-turn on the heater, if there is a sudden temperature drop.
GX has built-in voice recognition and can activate an emergency all to CMS by preset vocal commands or keywords. Allowing seniors to receive emergency attention even in situations where they are unable to seek help manually.
GX can be paired with BRPD-1 Bluetooth pendant, a small wearable panic button that partners with a smartphone application for GPS location reporting and trigger help alarm with one button press, whether the user is at home or out for a walk.
GX is compatible with Google Home and Amazon Alexa voice control to control home electronic devices, allowing seniors to use their voice to make their environment more suitable without lifting a finger.
Visual Monitoring and Verification
GX can integrate Camera PIR Motion Sensors to deliver real-time visual monitoring and verification. When an emergency occurs, alerts are immediately sent to family members and Monitoring Center to verify the event and sending immediate assistance as required.
Pivotell Advance Automatic Pill Dispenser
GX is compatible with Pivotell Advance Automatic Pill Dispenser, keeping secure of all pills, remind users to take their medication, keep track of their medicine intake, and allow caregiver/physician to monitor pill taking results/record and keep an eye on user’s needs.
Safety & Inactivity Monitoring
GX can support wireless sensor devices, allowing users to add in smoke detectors, water leakage sensors, and gas sensors to monitor emergencies, and motion sensors, door contacts, sensor pad transmitters for inactivity monitoring, to build a healthier, safer independent living.
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) & DECT
GX’s built-in VOIP function allows users to initiate two-way voice calls to contact CMS and family members during alarms and emergency. With the optional add-on of DECT, GX can pair with voice extenders, talking pendants, call points, etc. placed around the home, to create a safety net and peace of mind.
Color Lighting Function
GX also has an LED nightlight featuring both multi-color adjustment and light level button control for a pleasant ambiance.
The idea of touchless systems has gained new levels of prominence during the last year, driven by the global COVID-19 pandemic. Contactless systems have been part of the industry’s toolbox for decades, while technologies like facial and iris recognition are finding new uses every day.
We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Which security markets are embracing touchless, contactless systems and why?
Adoption of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) by the European Union in 2016 set a new standard for data privacy. But adherence to GDPR is only one element, among many privacy concerns sweeping the global security community and leaving almost no product category untouched, from access control to video to biometrics.
Because privacy concerns are more prevalent than ever, we asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What is the impact on the physical security market?
Many of us take critical infrastructure for granted in our everyday lives. We turn on a tap, flip a switch, push a button, and water, light, and heat are all readily available. But it is important to remember that computerized systems manage critical infrastructure facilities, making them vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
The recent ransomware attack on the Colonial Pipeline is an example of the new types of threats. In addition, any number of physical attacks is also possibilities. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the security challenges of protecting critical infrastructure?