Third Millennium is pleased to announce the launch of a flush-mounted Ligature Resistant reader. The RX5M is a Third Millennium styled flush-mounted Ligature Resistant reader. The unit is a multi-technology reader suitable to interface with all standard access control systems. This unit offers impact-resistant construction with a high degree of protection against vandalism and malicious attack. Quick and easy installation The stainless-steel flush fit assembled housing may be secured to a re...
Third Millennium is pleased to announce the launch of a flush Panel Mount reader. The RX5 is a Third Millennium styled flush Panel Mount reader. The unit is a multi-technology reader suitable to interface with all standard access control systems and may be used in speed gates and turnstiles, or other third-party enclosures. Having provided readers with turnstiles and speed gates for many years, this is the first product specifically designed for this market. Contactless entry Steve Greenaway...
Nedap, the foremost specialist in advanced vehicle identification solutions, has upgraded its ANPR Lumo license plate reader for vehicle access control with Open Supervised Device Protocol (OSDP) ensuring greater site security. The ANPR Lumo is one of the world’s first all-in-one license plate recognition systems compatible with the OSDP protocol V.2.1.7. The OSDP upgrade within Nedap’s ANPR Lumo camera makes it possible to improve vehicle gate access in a trusted and secure manner...
Nymi, Inc. announces a technology partnership with ELATEC, a provider of RFID readers and NFC/BLE mobile device readers. The partnership enables users of Nymi’s Workplace Wearables™ to seamlessly open doors and authenticate to systems, devices and machines that utilize ELATEC’s readers. The Nymi Band™ is the world’s only workplace wearable wristband that, once authenticated, offers the convenience of continuously authenticating the identity of the user until it is...
The SALTO XS4 One Deadlatch (DL) is a revolutionary stand-alone electronic lock thanks largely to the level of technology packed inside that brings together the convenience of a smart stand-alone access point - easy to retrofit, install, and no wires - with virtually the same power and performance of an online traditional access control point. This innovation brings electronic access control and convenience to a number of retail and commercial operations that commonly use aluminum-framed glass...
Sharp Electronics of Canada Ltd., a subsidiary of Japan's Sharp Corporation, is pleased to announce a technology partnership with ELATEC Inc. of Palm City, Florida, to provide radio frequency identification and mobile device readers as a core component of Sharp's touchless secure print solutions offerings. Touchless solutions High-touch surfaces such as door entrances, vending machines and multifunction printers can be vectors for spreading viral infections, such as the COVID-19 virus....
Suprema, a global provider of access control, biometrics and time and attendance solutions, announced that its Airfob Patch was selected as one of the 30 Top Technology Innovations of 2020 by Security Sales and Integration (SSI), an organization dedicated to providing technology and business content for security dealers and integrators. Security Sales and Integration has been announcing the Top 30 Technology Innovations every year for more than a decade. SSI’s Top 30 Technology Innovations is set apart from other awards program in that it is not submission-based or requires entry fee. Relying on their decades of industry expertise and experience, technical editors of SSI select the innovations that most benefit security dealers and integrators. The product that garnered Suprema the honor is Airfob Patch, an adhesive-backed device that attaches to existing RFID card readers to make them compatible with cellphone credentials. RF field signals We are honored that Airfob Patch was recognized as one of the top technology innovations of the year" When attached to card readers, Airfob Patch acquires cellphone credential compatibility as well as OSDP or Wiegand communication with the reader. Airfob Patch also harvests power from the RF field signals transmitted from the reader, eliminating the need for battery or wiring construction. “We are honored that Airfob Patch was recognized as one of the top technology innovations of the year. Suprema will continue its R&D efforts to keep introducing products and solutions truly beneficial to the company’s partners in the industry,” said Young S. Moon, the CEO of Suprema Inc. Access card solution Suprema Mobile Access and Airfob Patch were developed by MOCA System, a Suprema affiliate company that began in 2019 to focus on mobile access card solution. MOCA System has developed solutions, currently under patent evaluation, based on stable Bluetooth-based wireless communication method.
ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions completed the integration of their Aperio wireless lock technology with vIDix Control, a security management system from Ban-Koe Companies, who provides workplace security and workforce management solutions to thousands of organizations worldwide. “Integration with the Aperio locksets provides vIDix Control customers with the ability to extend electronic access to areas of their facility that are typically off limits to a wired solution,” said Steve Lohman, Workplace Security Solutions Product Advocate at Ban-Koe Companies. Aperio wireless technology integration The Aperio integration offers vIDix Control customers an easy way to connect additional openings to their new and existing system installations. Aperio is a global wireless access control platform that works with extensive locking hardware options from ASSA ABLOY Group brands, offering the flexibility to address a variety of applications throughout any facility. Aperio wireless platform uses wireless communication between the lock and an Aperio hub The Aperio wireless platform uses wireless communication (IEEE 802.15.4) between the lock and an Aperio hub to provide real-time communication to the access control system, simplifying installation and reducing costs. vIDix Control vIDix Control is a comprehensive security platform, enabling visibility into day-to-day security operations to provide assurance that facilities and personnel are safe and secure. This all-in-one security platform delivers the power to securely manage doors, gates & elevators, view live & recorded video based on events, send mass notifications, manage event status and more. “The Aperio integration with vIDix Control combines ease of use with flexibility and scalability to enable comprehensive security management for any facility,” said Mark Duato, Executive Vice President, Aftermarket at ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions Americas.
Virdee, a SaaS company serving the lodging, multi-family and commercial real estate industries, has announced a partnership with SALTO Systems, a globally renowned manufacturer of electronic access control solutions. The integration provides a powerful answer to the market’s demand for contactless arrival options by leveraging Virdee’s advanced ID verification module and the ability for guests to video chat with a remote agent before accessing a property. Virdee Concierge Under the partnership, SALTO Systems customers can use Virdee Concierge, a cloud-based platform that provides contactless check-in and check-out technology. Virdee’s hotel and commercial real estate properties can provide their guests with ID-verified and authorized access via mobile keys on iOS or Android devices that work at thousands of locations with SALTO Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) lock systems. Guests can also obtain SALTO-compatible, RFID keycards from one of Virdee’s in-lobby stations. In an era where the new paradigm for customer experiences and engagement is increasingly contactless, the Virdee-SALTO partnership provides critical layers of technology necessary to deliver on a complete solution. End-to-end remote and contactless solution SALTO Systems is pleased to partner with Virdee to deliver end-to-end remote and contactless solutions Colin DePree, Residential Business Leader at SALTO Systems, said “SALTO Systems is pleased to partner with Virdee to deliver end-to-end remote and contactless check in/check out solutions to our joint customers. Our convenient and robust electronic access control solutions work seamlessly within Virdee’s API-first system to provide hoteliers and real estate management companies with a safe, secure entry ecosystem.” Using an API-first approach, Virdee’s subscription-based technology enables check-ins for 100% of hotel guests, visitors to multifamily properties, and more without the need for a human interaction. By integrating with best-in-class platforms like SALTO Systems, Virdee is setting a new standard for convenient, contactless entry across real estate types. Virdee – SALTO Systems integration Branigan Mulcahy, Virdee Founder, said “As demand for a contactless customer experience continues to grow, this integration combines Virdee’s powerful user-onboarding software with SALTO’s world-renowned iOS and Android compatible BLE lock systems to meet a critical client need.” Branigan adds, “It represents another important step in bringing our powerful solutions to the market for owners and operators looking to provide state of the art arrival solutions - achieving operational cost efficiency and superior guest experiences at the same time.” Cutting-edge technology Nadav Cornberg, Virdee Founder and Chief Technologist, said "Virdee will continue to provide the most cutting-edge functionality to our customers and their guests, and SALTO is the ideal partner to make this a reality.” Nadav adds, “Through this partnership, Virdee will be one step closer to achieving its goal of using technology to simplify property operations, reducing costs, and improving the user experience for people in the built-environment.”
Airports present a complex challenge to security managers, representing in sharp relief the tension between the need for efficiency and that of maintaining the highest levels of security standards. As the primary passenger travel hubs of the modern era, airports see the most significant amount of traveler traffic as billions pass through their gates annually on their way to their destinations, both domestic and international. This trend of higher rates of air travel shows no signs of letting up any time soon as global demand for air travel continues to be on the rise, hitting an additional 5% of growth by June of 2019. Challenging security managers The challenge for security managers becomes one of how to ensure that all of these travelers are able to move as freely as possible to reach their gate while ensuring that they and the employees who facilitate the operations are all screened for any potential threats to security. Airport security managers are seeking out technologies that can help their teams to do more within their constraints In response, airport security managers are seeking out technologies that can help their teams to do more within their constraints. This article highlights four different technologies that are making their way into airport security managers’ planning as they build out their strategies for the year ahead. Airplanes and airports represent ideal targets for violent actors seeking to carry out well publicized, substantial attacks. Air travel industry Assaults on the airport grounds or attacks on airborne craft with an explosive or other means have the potential to grab headlines, cause massive casualties, harm the air travel industry, and draw significant reactions from authorities. For these reasons and more, the consequences stemming from a successful attack in this space can be severe and leave little room for error. Striking a balance between the two seemingly conflicting requirements is a difficult act, but is achievable when they define the threat models and implement the necessary solutions and strategies to reach the goals. Building a strategy starts with thinking about how to implement inspections before the travelers reach the terminal. In an ideal security situation, all plots to carry out attacks against an airport would have been picked up by intelligence operations long before the perpetrators even reach the grounds of the airfield. Air travel security Intelligence failures happen and one needs to have measures in place to prevent attackers However, intelligence failures happen and one needs to have measures in place to prevent attackers from reaching the terminals where they can carry out their attacks, potentially causing significant losses of life. The June 2016 attack on Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport that killed 41 people and left more than 230 injured was a stark reminder that attackers do not even have to pass through terminal security in order to pose a threat to air travel security. Controlling access to the terminals with a defined checkpoint at the entrance to the grounds can be a good start for defending your airport. It is advisable to offer a multi-lane checkpoint which compels the incoming traffic to slow for an inspection that allows security officers to perform a quick visual inspection of the vehicle and its passengers, asking them a question or two to ascertain whether they require additional checks depending on whether they show suspicious behavior. Vehicle inspection technologies As the vehicles cross through the checkpoint, interacting with personnel who look into the vehicle’s interior, there is an opportunity to also scan the undercarriage of the vehicle for additional threats such as explosives or other weapons which might be hidden below. Under vehicle inspection technologies (UVIS) that utilize high-resolution cameras to capture images for deep learning analysis allow security teams to scan and detect potential threats in a matter of seconds. Advanced systems in this market use anomaly detection to identify suspicious items based on their deep understanding of the various elements that make up the vehicle (i.e. the exhaust pipe, brake lines, etc.), and can alert security teams to the need for additional checks if it finds something that is out of place. Compromising security requirements The UVIS technology gives airports the ability to move vehicles through the checkpoint quickly These high-end solutions do not require previous scans of the vehicle or a manufacturer’s model, giving it a ‘first pass’ capability that is essential for airports that deal with new traffic on a regular basis. They also offer comparison technology which can play an important role for dealing with insider threats, which will be covered in our next post. The UVIS technology gives airports the ability to move vehicles through the checkpoint quickly, only flagging those that raise red flags for more intensive scans, thus minimizing the time spent stuck waiting for inspections without compromising on security requirements. Once the travelers reach the terminal and check in, they are ready for the next stage of the security inspections before reaching the gate hall. Often categorized by long lines and fraught nerves, this security check is ripe for a shake-up. Traditional security line An upgrade to the traditional security line, Automated Screening Lanes (ASL) systems offer a number of advantages. First, instead of a single line trudging along waiting to advance, travelers need only to find an open station where they can place their items into the waiting bins which are reported to be bigger than the previous models. Hopefully, this means that the entire line will not be held up due to one slower to unload traveler. The bins themselves are equipped with RFID tags to identify as they pass through the scanners. If a bin is identified as needing an additional inspection, it can be diverted from the rest of the flow so as not to slow down the rest of the travelers as they make their way through the x-ray machine. Scanning travel documents Using these systems can be faster than having human agents checking IDs against the traveler While the use of these systems is still at its early stages in just a relative handful of major American airports, they are already showing promise. Serving a dual purpose for both identification and tracking, facial recognition has the potential to add an important layer for verification at the security checkpoint. When the traveler scans their travel documents (passport or another document), their picture can be taken to verify that they really are who they claim to be. Using these systems can be faster than having human agents checking IDs against the traveler and their database, both in terms of speed of operation and the ability to have multiple stations running non-stop without needing additional personnel on shift. Facial recognition checkpoints Along with this use, facial recognition can be used to track both travelers and others such as airport employees as they move throughout the facility. This capability can be useful for access control needs as well as a fast response for locating a person of interest While just a few years ago one might have heard more noise against the idea of using facial recognition at these checkpoints, they have become a fait accompli at this point as biometrics and surveillance have become a standard at the airports. Once the travelers have been identified and their belongings are on their way through the x-ray, it is time for them to have their persons scanned for any dangerous items. This stage is a constant point of frustration as travelers work to remove belts and any other items that have no right to set off a beep but inevitably do. Identifying suspicious items The body scanners that have become a constant of the past decade or so raise issues of their own The body scanners that have become a constant of the past decade or so raise issues of their own, ranging from privacy and health to discomfort of raising hands above head like a prisoner of war or worse. While it is still possible to request a good old fashioned pat down for those who prefer a more personal touch, there are new options out there that could offer a third way. Standoff screening allows multiple people to walk through at a time, identifying any suspicious items that they may have on their person, and alerting for secondary searches. High-end estimates place the capacity of these systems to move nearly 2,000 people through their scans in an hour, depending in part on other conditions in the mix, while the low end puts the number somewhere closer to 500. Faster security process One should recognize that they are still early stage and are probably not where they need to be yet to operate on their own without additional measures. However, despite the calculated rollout, the development of these devices is a positive that can help lead to a faster security process by reducing friction at these high-stress points. The post-9/11 era has brought about a sea change in how travelers are inspected New challenges of how to detect and defend against threats place security managers in a perpetual search for new solutions. The post-9/11 era has brought about a sea change in how travelers are inspected before being allowed to reach the gates, and eventually their flights. Whereas the hijackings of the 1970s introduced the need for metal detectors, the shoe and underwear bombers have brought about the era of the body scanners in the first two decades of the millennium. Security device innovations Developments in the field will drive the next generation of security device innovations, which themselves are still playing catch-up to the last attack. Moving forward, airport security managers are on the lookout for systems that are more automated to help their teams make securely scanning the traveling public at an increasingly larger scale a more achievable task. It is up to the innovators in the sector to provide them with capabilities that go beyond that of the human eye to find dangerous threats wherever they may be, keeping the stream of air travel flowing with minimal interruptions.
ELATEC GmbH, a globally renowned company in RFID technologies for user authentication and access control, is preparing for future international growth with new management and a new corporate structure. Changes in 2020, including the addition of new competencies and expertise and the acquisition of physical access specialist, Xccelo Systems GmBH, will prepare the company for continued innovation and expansion into new markets and industry sectors. Focus on digital solutions 2020 has been a year of many changes for ELATEC, starting at the very top. This summer, the company welcomed a new Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Robert Helgerth, and a new Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Gerhard Burits. Under their leadership, ELATEC will continue to focus on technology innovation, new digital solutions and development of stable partnerships with other industry leaders. We are developing future-proof solutions that give our industry partners and their end users flexibility and security" ELATEC GmbH’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Robert Helgerth stated, “Our focus is on developing and acquiring the talent, expertise and partnerships we need to continue to lead the way in innovation for user authentication and access control across all industries. We are developing future-proof solutions that give our industry partners and their end users flexibility and security for current and future projects, no matter where in the world they are located.” Expanding physical access expertise The past year has also ushered in other changes for the company. At the beginning of the year, ELATEC acquired Xccelo Systems GmBH to expand their physical access expertise and product offerings. In the course of the integration, Xccelo will be transformed into ELATEC Systems GmbH. Dietmar Zappel will take the role of Global Innovation Lead for the physical access product portfolio within the ELATEC Group. The IT team has been restructured under the management of Head of IT Services & Processes Thomas Graf, with a renewed focus on digitization. In addition to developing new digital product solutions, the IT team now offers more digital and virtual options for services, support and learning. Online virtual events for customers Over the last few months, ELATEC has organized a number of online virtual events for customers as well as internal web-workshops and digital sales meetings. This approach expands ELATEC’s ability to serve customers around the globe and in remote locations. ELATEC continues to expand its international footprint with a special emphasis on Asian markets. As part of this initiative, the company welcomed Kazuki Yasui as the new Strategic Alliance Manager in Japan. Adding local experts who understand regional market conditions and needs will allow ELATEC to provide rapid, localized support and more targeted solutions for international customers. In the Americas, ELATEC Inc. moved into their new headquarters and completed construction on a second production facility, which started operations in November. Adding production capacity will enable ELATEC’s U.S. subsidiary to expedite production of orders and ensure a stable supply chain for customers in the Americas as demand increases. Expanding portfolio of RFID solutions Over the last year, ELATEC GmbH has expanded its portfolio of RFID solutions Over the last year, ELATEC GmbH has expanded its portfolio of RFID solutions. This includes software and services as well as state-of-the-art RFID readers and associated hardware. In 2020, the company strengthened its software division, expanding their contactless mobile authentication options and introducing new software innovations. ELATEC also welcomed a new Global Head of Development, Eddy Van Den Broek, who brings additional expertise and competencies to the development team. He will continue to lead the team in development of innovative and future-proof software and hardware solutions that will allow them to meet emerging opportunities in the years to come. Focus on flexibility and innovation 2020 was a particularly challenging year for nearly every market sector worldwide. The COVID-19 pandemic, along with other global and regional disruptions, required companies across all industries to respond with creativity and perseverance. Thanks to ELATEC’s focus on flexibility and innovation, and the tireless commitment of its employees, the company has weathered this unprecedented year exceptionally well. ELATEC has managed to keep their workforce stable and even added new talent and expertise, strengthening the sales and product management departments. Most importantly, they have continued to serve their customers with minimal disruption. Breaking new ground in communication and service The company has broken new ground in communication and service to identify customer needs, provide expert advice and consultation, and design solutions that will meet their requirements for today and tomorrow. Even amidst the COVID-19 global pandemic, many of the company’s projects were continued and successfully implemented this year. The management team at ELATEC extends a large ‘thank you’ to the dedicated team members who have made this possible and to their clients and industry partners. Continuous growth in challenging times We have shown ourselves to be a strong, stable and trusted service partner who is there when it counts" ELATEC’s continued growth during challenging times demonstrates that they are a partner who is both future-proof and crisis-proof. Moving forward, they will continue to develop flexible and innovative solutions to meet their customers’ evolving needs. ELATEC GmbH’s CEO, Robert Helgerth said, “I believe we have shown ourselves to be a strong, stable and trusted service partner who is there when it counts.” RFID and mobile solutions portfolio Moving into 2021, the company plans to expand its focus on the access control sector with new RFID and mobile solutions that improve security and provide greater functionality and control for administrators. Mr. Helgerth adds, “We are looking forward to the coming year with great expectations and are bullish about the outlook for our company and the industry as a whole in 2021. We will continue to focus on understanding customer needs and building our organization to better fulfill those needs.”
ELATEC Inc. is pleased to announce that shipments of its RFID readers produced at the company’s new Palm City, Florida facilities have now begun. ELATEC Inc.’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Paul Massey and Business Operations Manager, Yecica Gonzalez have led the efforts to stand up the production capabilities planned to more than double in volume by early 2021. ELATEC RFID readers While the COVID-19 virus has been disruptive throughout most of 2020, it has not slowed ELATEC’s global plans, including the opening of the new office and production facility in Palm City this past August and the hiring of additional staff for these expanded capabilities. “Producing readers in the US enables us to provide additional flexibility and increase our overall value to our customers. And being closer to customers shortens delivery and further enhances our responsiveness,” said Paul Massey, ELATEC Inc. Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Stable supply chain Paul adds, “This additional production capacity will also enable us to ensure a stable supply chain for customers in the Americas as demand increases.” Until now, ELATEC readers have been produced solely at the company’s Puchheim, Germany global headquarters.
The emergence of smartphones using iOS and Android is rapidly changing the landscape of the IT industry around the world. Several industries, such as digital cameras, car navigation, MP3, and PNP, have been replaced by equivalent or even better performance using smartphones. Smartphones provide increasing portability by integrating the functions of various devices into a single unit which allows them to connect to platforms with network-based services and offer new services and conveniences that have never been experienced before. These changes have expanded into the access control market. Although not yet widespread, ‘Mobile access cards’ is one of the terminologies that everyone has been talking about. RF cards used for access security are being integrated into smartphones just as digital cameras and MP3s were in the past. While people might forget their access cards at home in the morning, they seldom forget their smartphones. Using smartphones for access control increases entry access reliability and convenience. Mobile/smartphone access control A key aspect of mobile credential is that it makes it possible to issue or reclaim cards without face-to-face interaction As in other markets, the combination of smartphones and access cards is creating a new value that goes beyond the simple convenience of integration enhancing the ability to prevent unauthorized authentication and entrance. People sometimes lend their access cards to others, but it is far less likely they might lend their smartphone with all their financial information and personal information – to another person. This overcomes an important fundamental weakness of RF cards. Another valuable aspect of mobile credential is that it makes it possible to issue or reclaim cards without face-to-face interaction. Under existing access security systems, cards must be issued in person. Since card issuance implies access rights, the recipient’s identification must be confirmed first before enabling the card and once the card has been issued, it cannot be retracted without another separate face-to-face interaction. Mobile access cards In contrast, mobile access cards are designed to transfer authority safely to the user's smartphone based on TLS. In this way, credentials can be safely managed with authenticated users without face-to-face interaction. Mobile cards can be used not only at the sites with a large number of visitors or when managing access for an unspecified number of visitors, but also at the places like shared offices, kitchens and gyms, currently used as smart access control systems in shared economy markets. The market share of mobile access cards today is low even though the capability can offer real benefits to users and markets. While the access control market itself is slow-moving, there are also practical problems that limit the adoption of new technologies like mobile access cards. Use of Bluetooth Low Energy technology While NFC could be an important technology for mobile credential that is available today on virtually all smartphones, differences in implementation and data handling processes from various vendors prevents universal deployment of a single solution to all devices currently on the market. Accordingly, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) has been considered as an alternative to NFC. Bluetooth is a technology that has been applied to smartphones for a long time, and its usage and interface are unified, so there are no compatibility problems. However, speed becomes the main problem. The authentication speed of BLE mobile access card products provided by major companies is slower than that of existing cards. Enhancing credential authentication speed Authentication speed is being continuously improved using BLE's GAP layer and GATT layers The second problem is that mobile access cards must be accompanied by a supply of compatible card readers. In order to use mobile access cards, readers need to be updated but this is not a simple task in the access control market. For 13.56 MHz smart cards (which were designed to replace 125 kHz cards), it has taken 20 years since the standard was established but only about half of all 25 kHz cards have been replaced so far. Legacy compatibility and the need for equivalent performance, even with additional benefits, will drive adoption timing for the Access Control market. While BLE technology helps resolve the compatibility problem of mobile access cards, it can identify some breakthroughs that can solve the speed problem. Authentication speed is being continuously improved using BLE's GAP layer and GATT layers, and new products with these improvements are now released in the market. Making use of key improvements allows Suprema's mobile access card to exhibit an authentication speed of less than 0.5 seconds providing equivalent performance to that of card-based authentication. AirFob Patch MOCA System's AirFob Patch addresses the need for technological improvements in the access control market in a direct, cost effective, and reliable way – by offering the ability to add high-performance BLE to existing card readers – enabling them to read BLE smartphone data by applying a small adhesive patch approximately the size of a coin. This innovative breakthrough applies energy harvesting technology, generating energy from the RF field emitted by the existing RF reader – then converting the data received via BLE back into RF – and delivering it to the reader. By adding the ability to use BLE on virtually any existing RF card reading device, MOCA allows greater ability for partners and end users to deploy a technologically-stable, high performance access control mobile credential solution to their employees, using devices they already own and are familiar with. Adding MOCA AirFob Patch eliminates the need to buy and install updated readers simply to take advantage of mobile credential, lowering costs and risks, and increasing employee confidence and convenience. Growth forecast of mobile access card market in 2020 In 2020, forecasts show that the mobile access card market will grow far more rapidly Several companies have entered the mobile access card market, but they have not set up a meaningful product solution stream until 2019. In 2020, forecasts show that the mobile access card market will grow far more rapidly. Reviewing new entries into the market allows identification of the latest products that provide improving solutions to compatibility and speed problems. MOCA AirFob Patch addresses development plans in process today that overcome the legacy installed base of card readers – allowing rapid creation of an environment that can make immediate use of BLE mobile access cards. Integrated mobile digital ID With proven usability and within suitable environments, mobile access cards will also begin to make inroads into other markets, not just the access control market. In the sharing economy market, which seeks access management without face-to-face interaction, the integrated mobile digital ID led by the 'DID Alliance' will serve as a technical tool that can be used in access authentication – forging increasing links between the access control and digital ID markets.
It amazes me how in a few short years security systems have gone from simple, dumb cameras witnessing events to intelligent eyes, ears, speech and touch solutions that boost situational awareness far beyond human capabilities. It seems the only senses missing from the equation now are smell and taste. And who knows, someone might be working on those in a lab somewhere right now. But what’s really fascinating to me is how the Internet of Things (IoT) has opened a world of possibilities for transforming security technology into something new yet again. With IoT we’re able to push and pull nuggets of intelligence from sources we never considered before: environmental sensors, pressure plates, door lock timers and much more. It’s helped us break through the constraining mindset that security systems are strictly single-purpose. With interconnectivity at the core, we’re starting to imagine myriad ways to apply these tools to challenges outside the realm of security. Here are just a few examples. Flood Management Assistance Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate remotely As recent hurricanes and floods have shown, water damage can be devastating to a community. That’s why some municipalities are using their city surveillance cameras in conjunction with water sensor to proactively address the problem. Water sensors collect data from multiple sources such as rain gutters, sewer systems and pump stations, in order to monitor fluctuations in water levels and water quality. If an alert triggers, having a network camera in proximity to visually verify the situation helps responders determine the best course of action. For instance, if multiple water detection sensors trigger alerts simultaneously or sequentially over a large area it’s probably due to natural runoff from recent rainfall. But without eyes on the scene, how can you be sure? Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate and identify the cause of a trigger remotely. It might be a fire hydrant spewing water, a water main break or even a chemical spill. With video streaming live to the command center, staff can remotely inspect the area, determine the cause of the trigger and decide whether remediation is required, thus avoiding the expense of dispatching an investigative crew to a non-event. Some municipalities are using their city surveillance cameras in conjunction with water sensor to proactively address the problem Environmental Control Assistance Data centers house the lifeblood of a business so it’s no wonder why companies work hard to protect them. We’re all familiar with the integration of network cameras with access control systems to visually verify who is actually using the credentials. Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate and identify the cause of a trigger remotely But there’s another aspect to protecting data centers and that’s environment control. Data centers need to maintain optimum humidity and temperature for the racks of electronics. When environmental sensors in the facility detect out-of-norm ranges technicians can remotely command a network camera to zoom in on the gauges and help them determine whether remediation might be necessary. Coupling network cameras with other sensors in the data center can provide visual confirmation of other conditions as well. For instance, every time a data rack door-open-close sensor detects an event it can trigger the camera to pan to the location and stream video to security. Some data centers employ weight sensors at the doorway to weigh personnel and equipment as they enter the room and when they exit to ensure no additional hardware is being taken out of the facility or left inside without permission. Any discrepancy would trigger the camera to zoom in for a close-up of the individual’s face and send a visual alert and ID information to security. Roadway Management And Parking Assistance Network cameras have long played a part in city-wide traffic management. Adding video analytics and integration with network sensors, makes those cameras that much smarter and versatile. They can detect cars driving in bike lanes or driving in the wrong direction and capture license plates of offenders. Their ability to detect anomalous traffic flow patterns can be integrated with car counting sensors, networked electronic road signs and traffic light systems to automatically redirect vehicles to alternate routes. They make great, intelligent parking lot attendants, too. Working in conjunction with weight sensors network cameras can count vehicles coming into and leaving a lot or garage and verify when the facility has reached capacity. License plate recognition and video analytics can be used to ascertain that a vehicle entering a reserved parking space doesn’t match the credentials and vehicle attributes in the database. With the addition of noise sensors and audio analytics, network cameras can improve roadway and parking facility safety by detecting and identifying specific sounds – breaking glass, car alarms, gun shots, and aggressive speech – and triggering a visual alert to first responders. Network cameras can improve roadway and parking facility safety by detecting and identifying specific sounds and triggering a visual alert to first responders Shopper Experience Assistance In the early days of online shopping, e-tailers designed their sites to replicate the in-store customer experience. In an ironic turn of events, today brick-and-mortar stores are trying to mirror the online shopping experience. To do so, they’re turning their security systems into adjunct sales assistance. With network video and audio system automation they can recognize and acknowledge loyal customers with personal greetings. Retailers are applying people counting video analytics to checkout activity to create rules-based consistency in customer service With heatmapping analytics they can measure how much time a customer spends in a specific department or observe how they walk through the aisles of the store. They can track shopping behaviors such as items looked at that made it into the cart or didn’t, or whether a customer actually checked out or left the merchandise behind. By capturing these shopping patterns and trends retailers can shape a more positive, more profitable customer shopping experience. For instance, integrating video analytics with point of sale systems and RFID sensors on merchandise tags can result in timely alerts to sales associates to recommend additional merchandise. This is a case of emulating how e-tailers let the customer know that other customers who bought X often also purchased items Y and Z. Or to avoid disappointing customers due to stock outages, retailers are linking weight sensors and video analytics to make sure their shelves are well-stocked and if not, quickly alert associates to what items need to be restocked. Capturing Business Intelligence Retailers are also using video cameras to monitor checkout queues and trigger automated announcements over the public-address system, closed system such as smartphones or other wireless communications devices that checkers are needed rather wait for a person to call for backup. IoT laid the groundwork for network security solutions to seamlessly integrate with other IP-based technologies, sensors and programs They’re applying people counting video analytics to checkout activity to create rules-based consistency in customer service. While retailers will always use their surveillance camera for loss prevention, they’re finding that integrating traditional technology in new ways can yield even bigger returns. Linking network video surveillance, video analytics, network communications system and sensors with point-of-sale systems and customer loyalty databases, retailers are capturing the business intelligence they need to get back in the game and make brick-and-mortar a greater overall experience than online shopping. A Natural Cross-Over Technology This trend towards integration has forever changed how organizations view their investment in security technology. The intelligence and versatility of a tool that can see, verify and analyze what’s happening in real-time is spurring users to tap its cross-over potential for a host of other tasks that could benefit from more astute situational awareness – everything from manufacturing and equipment maintenance to logistics, inventory control and beyond. IoT laid the groundwork for network security solutions to seamlessly integrate with other IP-based technologies, sensors and programs. How we capitalize on that connection is only limited by our imagination.
Over the past few years, biometrics has rapidly expanded into consumer applications, like the financial market for customer authentication, to payment services and withdrawing cash from ATMs in high-fraud markets. However, its adoption as an additional authentication factor for physical access control systems (PACS) and other enterprise applications, hasn’t been as rapid. But this is changing. Biometrics offers numerous benefits at the door and throughout the enterprise. With the advent of new anti-spoofing capabilities, and its integration into secure trust platforms that protect privacy and support a variety of RFID credential technologies, biometric authentication is poised to deliver a much higher matching speed and better overall performance. This will dramatically improve an organization's security, while enhancing user convenience.Newer solutions are overcoming these security and convenience hurdles to help realise the full potential of biometrics Challenges For Biometric Authentication Biometrics fuses convenience and security while validating “true identity” versus identity that is associated to the possession of an ID card. As an example, biometrics prevents a user from taking someone else’s card and obtaining access to privileged resources. This adds the human element to traditional methods of authentication, strengthening security by combining something the user “is” with something the user “has” or “knows.” According to the firm ABI Research in its May 2018 study, Biometric Technologies and Applications, the total fingerprint sensor shipments for the entire consumer market is “estimated to reach 1.2 billion worldwide for 2018, thus ensuring its market dominance.”It has been far too easy for fraudsters to create a fake fingerprint and present it to a reader Despite the benefits of fingerprint authentication in numerous consumer applications, there have been impediments to its broader adoption in the enterprise. While price has been one big roadblock, there have also historically been other reasons for its slower-than-expected growth. First, many technologies are still vulnerable to spoofs and hacking. It has been far too easy for fraudsters to create a fake fingerprint and present it to a reader. Equally troublesome, older products have not been able to move users through the doors as fast as a simple ID card and reader. In general, all fingerprint capture technologies are not equal among older products, and there can be significant differences in performance. Developing Technology Performance Newer solutions are overcoming these security and convenience hurdles to help realize the full potential of biometrics. Their development has focused on three key areas: How fingerprint images are captured – if the image can’t be properly captured, the rest of the process fails The implementation of liveness detection to enhance trust – even in the case when the image is properly captured, if it is fake the system cannot be trusted Optimizing performance through a combination of new technology and algorithms, while ensuring interoperability so the performance can be trusted. The skin is illuminated at different depths to deliver much richer data about the surface and sub-surface features of the fingerprint Optimizing Capture The quality of the captured image is critical, across all types of fingerprints and environments. Many customers choose sensors that use multispectral imaging because it collects information from inside the finger to augment available surface fingerprint data.The skin is illuminated at different depths to deliver much richer data about the surface and sub-surface features of the fingerprint The skin is illuminated at different depths to deliver much richer data about the surface and sub-surface features of the fingerprint. Additionally, the sensor collects data from the finger even if the skin has poor contact with the sensor, because of environmental conditions such as water or finger contamination. Multispectral sensors work for the broadest range of people with normal, wet, dry or damaged fingers, across the widest range of usage conditions – from lotions or grease to sunlight to wet or cold conditions. The sensors also resist damage from harsh cleaning products and contamination from dirt and sunlight. Liveness Detection Liveness detection is the ability to determine that the biometric data captured by the fingerprint reader is from a real living person, not a plastic fake or other artificial copy. An increasingly visible dimension of biometric performance in commercial applications, liveness detection is critical for preserving trust in the integrity of biometrics authentication. At the same time, it must not impede performance or result in excessive false user rejections.While liveness detection optimizes performance, it is also important to ensure that this performance can be trusted The most trusted multispectral imaging fingerprint sensors with liveness detection provide a real-time determination that the biometric captures are genuine and are being presented by the legitimate owner, rather than someone impersonating them. This capability leverages the image-capture approach of using different colors or spectrum of light to measure the surface and subsurface data within a fingerprint. In addition to this optical system, the biometrics sensor features several core components, including an embedded processor that analyses the raw imaging data to ensure that the sample being imaged is a genuine human finger rather than an artificial or spoof material. Advanced machine learning techniques are used so the solution can adapt and respond to new threats and spoofs as they are identified. While liveness detection and the underlying capture technology optimizes performance, it is also important to ensure that this performance can be trusted. This requires adequate testing to ensure interoperability with template matching algorithms. The first requirement for incorporating biometrics into a physical access control solution is a secure trust platform Trusted Performance The top-performing solutions capture usable biometric data on the first attempt for every user. They also speed the process of determining that the biometric data is not a fake, and they quickly perform template matching to reject impostors and match legitimate users.The card/mobile plus finger mode is one of the fastest-growing two-factor authentication use cases for securing access to both physical and digital places To trust this performance, though, the focus must be elsewhere: on interoperability with template-matching algorithms. Extensive interoperability testing must be performed by skilled and independent third parties like the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) so that performance data can actually be trusted in all template-matching modes, and not simply a vendor claim. Template Matching Modes Template-on-card and card/mobile + finger modes using “1:1” template-matching profiles authenticates a person’s identity by comparing the person’s captured biometric template with one that is pre-stored in a database. Template-on-device mode for finger-only authentication using “1:N” matching compares the person’s captured biometric template against all stored biometric templates in the system). The card/mobile plus finger mode is one of the fastest-growing two-factor authentication use cases for securing access to both physical and digital places.Cryptography prevents any man-in-the-middle attacks while also protecting the biometric database As an example of how to deliver trusted performance, HID Global uses the top-ranked NIST certified MINEX III minutia algorithm to ensure interoperability with industry-standard fingerprint template databases. This interoperability ensures that today’s systems, which are based on much more powerful hardware than in the past, will perform accurate 1:N identification of a full database in less than a second. Physical Access Control Integration The first requirement for incorporating biometrics into a physical access control solution is a secure trust platform designed to meet the concerns of accessibility and data protection in a connected environment. The platform should leverage credential technology that employs encryption and a software-based infrastructure to secure trusted identities on any form factor for physical access control, access to IT networks and beyond. Cryptography prevents any man-in-the-middle attacks while also protecting the biometric database. This system also must encompass remote management of all readers and users, spanning all onboarding as well as template loading and enrolment activities for supported authentication modes. Beyond the encryption of the data itself, there are now many good alternatives available for building highly secure and well protected systems Other important focus areas include configuration and administration, plus all logs, reports and monitoring.New system architectures and data models have been created to protect personal information and maintain user privacy It should be possible to manage biometric readers as groups or individually over the network, and tools should be available to allow system administrators to manage all configuration settings from time and data to language, security and synchronisation. The system should enable continuous live monitoring of authentication, alerts and system health, and provide a rich set of associated reporting tools. There are also backend implementation decisions to be made, including how a biometric authentication system will be seamlessly integrated into third-party systems. This is another major pain point of biometric technology. To simplify deployment, application programming interfaces (APIs) should be available for direct integration of the biometrics authentication solution with the access control infrastructure. Privacy Considerations Properly implemented, biometrics solutions with liveness detection also protect privacy – if you can’t use a fake finger, then even if you did obtain someone’s fingerprint data, it is meaningless. Strong and updatable liveness protection is critical if biometrics are to eliminate the need to use PINs or passwords.Strong and updatable liveness protection is critical if biometrics are to eliminate the need to use PINs or passwords Biometrics data must be handled like all sensitive and identifying information, and properly architected system designs will always consider and protect against both internal and external threats and attacks. New system architectures and data models have been created to protect personal information and maintain user privacy. Beyond the encryption of the data itself, there are now many good alternatives available for building highly secure and well protected systems, including the use of multi-factor and even multi-modal authentication to maintain security even if some identifying data is compromised. Today’s modern fingerprint authentication solutions are on a fast track to deliver a unique combination of ease of use, availability and convenience and higher security to physical access control systems. With their latest improvements in liveness detection, system architectures, performance and ability to be easily incorporated into access control solutions, they seamlessly combine security and convenience to make them a viable option when accessing a facility, networks and services. These solutions deliver a higher confidence of “who” is being admitted through the building’s front door, where it really matters.
The coronavirus pandemic had a monumental impact on all aspects of the business world, including the security industry. However, amid the gloom and doom, many security professionals also saw opportunity: New ways the industry’s products could be applied to address the challenges of coping with the virus. This article will review some of those opportunities, based on our reporting throughout the year and including links back to the original articles. During and after the pandemic, security systems are an important asset when it comes to helping to keep occupants and buildings safe as employees return to work. For example, video analytics can provide insight into how spaces have previously been used and can help to predict where and when occupants encounter each other or congregate. Role of thermal cameras These foot-traffic patterns can inform settings for a variety of devices - like ventilation and temperature controls - and even help owners create social distancing plans and monitor personal protective equipment (PPE) compliance. Thermal surveillance, a mainstay of traditional physical security and outdoor perimeter detection, began being deployed early in the pandemic to quickly scan employees, contractors and visitors as part of a first line of defense to detect COVID-19 symptoms. These systems provide flexibility and can offer integrations with multiple VMS platforms and access control devices These systems provide flexibility and can offer integrations with multiple VMS platforms and access control devices. Thermal cameras can be a tool for detecting fever, but any use of the technology for this purpose is full of qualifications and caveats. Importantly, how the camera system is configured makes all the difference in whether temperature readings are accurate, and the downside of inaccurate readings is obvious - and potentially deadly. Temperature detection systems FDA guidelines limit how the cameras are used, not to mention guidance from other regulatory/government bodies such as the CDC. One of our Expert Roundtable panelists compares the market to a “wild west scenario,” and almost all the panelists are clear about how customers should approach the market: Buyer beware. There are many companies jumping into selling temperature detection systems to the state, local governments, hospitals, airports and local businesses, but do they know how to drive one? Anyone can get behind a car and drive it into a wall by accident. The same can happen with a temperature detection system. Customers need to know what questions to ask to ensure they maximize the accuracy of body temperature detection systems. Rise of contactless Spread of the novel coronavirus has jolted awareness of hygiene as it relates to touching surfaces such as keypads. No longer in favor are contact-based modalities including use of personal identification numbers (PINs) and keypads, and the shift has been sudden and long-term. Both customers and manufacturers were taken by surprise by this aspect of the virus’s impact and are therefore scrambling for solutions. Immediate impact of the change includes suspension of time and attendance systems that are touch-based Immediate impact of the change includes suspension of time and attendance systems that are touch-based. Some two-factor authentication systems are being downgraded to RFID-only, abandoning the keypad and/or biometric components that contributed to higher security, but are now unacceptable because they involve touching. "Users do not want to touch anything anymore,” says Alex Zarrabi, President of Touchless Biometrics Systems (TBS). Facial recognition system Another contactless system that benefits from concerns about spread of COVID-19 is facial recognition. New advancement in software, specifically in the areas of algorithms, neural networks and deep learning and/or artificial intelligence (AI), have all dramatically improved both the performance and accuracy of facial recognition systems, further expanding its use for an increasing number of applications. A low-tech solution - the face mask - became a leading preventative measure during the pandemic. But, a high-tech solution is necessary to ensure that everyone is wearing them. Cameras powered by artificial intelligence can now identify whether or not people entering a facility are wearing facemasks and help enforce adherence to mask mandates. This technology is proving to be a cost-effective solution that reduces risks of confrontations over masks policies and gives managers the data they need to document regulatory compliance and reduce liability. Smart video analytics Other technology approaches, including artificial intelligence (AI), were also brought to bear during the pandemic. The German data analytics powerhouse G2K, for example, has developed a Corona Detection and Containment System (CDCS) that is ready for immediate use in record time. Detection takes place in combination with AI-supported data analysis to specifically identify virus hotspots and distribution routes, as well as to identify other potentially infected persons. One specific AI application fuels the reopening of the world and successfully keeps the spread of the virus abated One specific AI application fuels the reopening of the world and successfully keeps the spread of the virus abated. A “collaborative security” application includes a synthesis of smart video analytics, facial recognition, object identification/detection, and thermal cameras that can support the reopening of businesses globally when installed within those facilities frequented by customers. Enforcing social distancing Several applications have been successful to date and will increase in usability in the foreseeable future, creating “smart cities” working together towards a safer, more secure world. The site of one pilot program is the 250,000-square-foot HID Global facility in Austin. For the pilot program, 80 HID Location Services readers were installed in a wide area in the facility, including a variety of environments. Initially 30 badges and 30 fobs, all BLE-enabled, were issued to employees. If a badge identifies another nearby beacon (suggesting a social distancing failure), it emits a blinking LED light, which can be seen by the offending co-worker. To ensure social distancing, a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon is emitted from an employee’s fob (or from a badge that has the same functionality). The beacon communicates peer-to-peer with a beacon emitted by another employee’s fob or badge to alert if the location of the two employees is less than six feet apart. For contact tracing, the beacons communicate via a nearby “reader” (a BluFi BLE-to-Wi-Fi gateway) to the Bluzone cloud-based software-as-a-service. COVID-19 White Papers In addition, we published several White Papers in 2020 that addressed various aspects of the coronavirus pandemic. They included: The top five security lessons learned that apply across all industries navigating COVID-19. Using video analytics to keep staff, visitors and customers safe by enforcing social distancing. How antimicrobial treatment on door handles and levers can reduce disease spread. How companies can put in extra precautions that will continue to grow and adapt with their environment over the long-term. Determining the practicalities and capabilities of today's thermal cameras to accurately detect body temperature.
The cloud is here to stay. Its resilience and ability to connect the world during the COVID-19 pandemic has proved its worth, even to the uninitiated who have now witnessed first-hand the value of connected systems. Video and access control as a service provides a flexible and fluid security and business solution to meet the demands of a rapidly evolving industry, where the changing threat landscape means investing in the cloud is an investment towards success. This article will look back at our articles in 2020 about the growing popularity of cloud solutions for physical security, with links to the original content. Product offering While most people agree on the definition of “cloud,” there are several points about the terminology that may require clarification. Private cloud or public cloud? VSaaS or unlimited storage for video? Beyond the basics, the terms become foggy, reflecting a variety of notions about how cloud services fit into the broader physical security marketplace. As cloud usage becomes more popular, it’s important that marketers be precise in their terminology, and that integrators and end users be diligent in understanding the specifics of available product offerings. Different meanings “The cloud has many different possible connotations, depending on the context,” says Yu Hao Lin of Rasilient Systems, one of our Expert Roundtable panelists. For example, corporate CIOs will more likely understand the cloud to be a private cloud platform. As such, the public cloud is a ubiquitous term while the private cloud is more specified. Cloud system security Security of cloud systems is an ongoing discussion in the industry, especially how cloud system cybersecurity compares to that of on-premise systems. Our Expert Panel Roundtable weighed in on this question. “While both kinds of security systems serve their purpose, it can be argued that the streamlined updates that are commonplace with cloud-based solutions may put them at more of an advantage when it comes to data security,” says panelist Eric Widlitz of Vanderbilt Industries. “Also, most reputable cloud-based solutions are running in secured data centers by companies such as Google, Microsoft, or Amazon, so you also get to take advantage of all the security layers they have protecting your data.” Hybrid cloud video security solution A growing list of cloud players reinforces the importance of the cloud in the future of physical security There are several relatively new companies pushing cloud in a big way. Verkada is fast-growing company currently currently focusing to deliver an all-in-one hybrid cloud video security solution powered by edge processing inside the camera. The growing list of cloud players reinforces the importance of the cloud in the future of physical security. Combining AI and cloud video One company investing in the cloud is Eagle Eye Networks, which has raised $40 million of Series E funding from venture capital firm Accel to finance the realization of their vision to combine AI and cloud video. The money will allow Eagle Eye to continue its steep growth curve and leverage AI on its true cloud platform to reshape video surveillance. “The investment will make video surveillance smarter and safer for end-users,” says Ken Francis, President. Eagle Eye offers an application programming interface (API) to enable the integration of best-in-breed third-party AI and analytics systems to leverage the video. Eagle Eye is also investing in its own AI development and hiring additional development and customer service personnel. Hirsch Velocity Cirrus and MobilisID Identiv introduced the Hirsch Velocity Cirrus cloud-based Access Control as a Service (ACaaS) solution and MobilisID smart mobile physical access control solution. Hirsch Velocity Cirrus is an optimal solution for both end-users and integrators, with lower upfront costs, reduced maintenance, enhanced portability, and the future-proof assurance of automatic security updates and feature sets. MobilisID is a smart mobile physical access control solution that uses Bluetooth and capacitive technologies to allow frictionless access to a controlled environment without the need to present a credential. Advantages and disadvantages Advantages of cloud-based physical security technologies are many, when supporting staffThe advantages of cloud-based physical security technologies are many, and have wide-ranging applications for all areas of the transport sector; across stations, transport hubs, and vehicles. When used to support staff and complement existing processes, such systems can prove invaluable for transport professionals in helping to create a safer working environment, promoting confidence among personnel and passengers, and assuring passengers who are fearful about the current pandemic that all possible precautions are being taken during their journey. 5G supporting cloud-based applications 5G is the first communication environment that is cloud-native. As such, 5G networks will support cloud-based applications in a way that 4G, 3G and 2G can’t support. For instance, sensors (e.g. in a manufacturing plant) often have small internal storage and rely on synced devices (e.g. gateways) to interact with the cloud. Soon, these sensors will be able to work more efficiently, interacting with the cloud via the ultra-low latency and the edge computing capabilities supported by 5G networks. Increasing use of IoT Unlike current IoT services that make performance trade-offs to get the best from these existing wireless technologies, 5G networks will be designed to bring the high levels of performance needed for the increasing use of IoT. It will enable a perceived fully ubiquitous connected world, with the boosted capacity offered by 5G networks transferring exponentially more data at a much quicker rate.
Spread of the novel coronavirus has jolted awareness of hygiene as it relates to touching surfaces such as keypads. No longer in favor are contact-based modalities including use of personal identification numbers (PINs) and keypads, and the shift has been sudden and long-term. Both customers and manufacturers were taken by surprise by this aspect of the virus’s impact and are therefore scrambling for solutions. Immediate impact of the change includes suspension of time and attendance systems that are touch-based. Some two-factor authentication systems are being downgraded to RFID-only, abandoning the keypad and/or biometric components that contributed to higher security, but are now unacceptable because they involve touching. Touchless biometric systems in demand The trend has translated into a sharp decline in purchase of touch modality and a sharp increase in the demand for touchless systems, says Alex Zarrabi, President of Touchless Biometrics Systems (TBS). Biometrics solutions are being affected unequally, depending on whether they involve touch sensing, he says. Spread of the novel coronavirus has jolted awareness of hygiene as it relates to touching surfaces such as keypads “Users do not want to touch anything anymore,” says Zarrabi. “From our company’s experience, we see it as a huge catalyst for touchless suppliers. We have projects being accelerated for touchless demand and have closed a number of large contracts very fast. I’m sure it’s true for anyone who is supplying touchless solutions.” Biometric systems are also seeing the addition of thermal sensors to measure body temperature in addition to the other sensors driving the system. Fingerscans and hybrid face systems TBS offers 2D and 3D systems, including both fingerscans and hybrid face/iris systems to provide touchless identification at access control points. Contactless and hygienic, the 2D Eye system is a hybrid system that combines the convenience of facial technology with the higher security of iris recognition. The system recognises the face and then detects the iris from the face image and zeros in to scan the iris. The user experiences the system as any other face recognition system. The facial aspect quickens the process, and the iris scan heightens accuracy. TBS also offers the 2D Eye Thermo system that combines face, iris and temperature measurement using a thermal sensor module. TBS's 2D Eye Thermo system combines face, iris and temperature measurement using a thermal sensor module Another TBS system is a 3D Touchless Fingerscan system that provides accuracy and tolerance, anti-spoofing, and is resilient to water, oil, dust and dirt. The 2D+ Multispectral for fingerprints combines 2D sensing with “multispectral” subsurface identification, which is resilient to contaminants and can read fingerprints that are oily, wet, dry or damaged – or even through a latex glove. In addition, the 3D+ system by TBS provides frictionless, no-contact readings even for people going through the system in a queue. The system fills the market gap for consent-based true on-the-fly systems, says Zarrabi. The system captures properties of the hand and has applications in the COVID environment, he says. The higher accuracy and security ratings are suitable for critical infrastructure applications, and there is no contact; the system is fully hygienic. Integration with access control systems Integration of TBS biometrics with a variety of third-party access control systems is easy. A “middleware” subsystem is connected to the network. Readers are connected to the subsystem and also to the corporate access control system. An interface with the TBS subsystem coordinates with the access control system. For example, a thermal camera used as part of the biometric reader can override the green light of the access control system if a high temperature (suggesting COVID-19 infection, for example) is detected. The enrollment process is convenient and flexible and can occur at an enrollment station or at an administration desk. Remote enrollment can also be accomplished using images from a CCTV camera. All templates are encrypted. Remotely enrolled employees can have access to any location they need within minutes. The 3D+ system by TBS provides frictionless, no-contact readings even for people going through the system in a queue Although there are other touchless technologies available, they cannot effectively replace biometrics, says Zarrabi. For example, a centrally managed system that uses a Bluetooth signal from a smart phone could provide convenience, is “touchless,” and could suffice for some sites. However, the system only confirms the presence and “identity” of a smart phone – not the person who should be carrying it. “There has been a lot of curiosity about touchless, but this change is strong, and there is fear of a possible second wave of COVID-19 or a return in two or three years,” says Zarrabi. “We really are seeing customers seriously shifting to touchless.”
Almabani General Contractors has a long robust history which began when the founders established the company in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, in October of 1972. They are a family-owned company that remains true to its founders’ spirit, covenants, innovation and perseverance. Almabani General Contractors For four and a half decades, Almabani have been building up their expertise to serve an ever more demanding and challenging construction need in the region. In a prosperous economy fueled by the oil boom, the company was positioned to participate in the execution of some of the most prestigious landmark projects in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. They have the highest classification in all civil and electrical works with in-house capabilities to develop design and value engineer solutions to cater to the customers’ needs. They have proudly executed projects from complex infrastructure works to heavy civil engineering structures. Engaged in highly competitive turnkey projects The company is engaged in highly competitive turnkey projects worth several billion dollars The company is engaged in highly competitive turnkey projects worth several billion dollars. To this end, Almabani continues to invest in quality, value engineering, proactive and talented people, endeavoring at all times to satisfy their customer’s expectations and to best serve the welfare of the society. Replacing decentralized access control systems Almabani General Contractors was using traditional decentralized access control & time-attendance systems in which they were facing the issue of excessive manual work and inaccurate data. Because of the poor quality of the existing biometric sensors, user fingerprints weren't recognized in the first attempt and the process was annoying and time-consuming. As the company is dealing with construction work, one of the major challenges for construction workers is accurate attendance marking despite dirty/stained fingers. Moreover, due to existing software limitations, many policies of access control and time-attendance couldn’t be implemented. As the existing system was decentralized, on-field employees faced issues while marking their attendance. Only basic reports could be prepared for attendance and access whereas they needed more customized reports because of various shifts and different contract workers. Moreover, third party integration was not possible in the earlier system. And last, but not the least, they were unsatisfied with support from the past supplier. Matrix access control and time-attendance solution Matrix solutions experts collaborated with the decision heads to understand the exact requirement and provide a cost-effective solution. After a comprehensive discussion, Matrix offered a centralized solution for all the locations. With the Matrix time-attendance and access control solution, the customer has overcome all the challenges. Now, it's possible for them to get control of all the locations from a single central location. Multispectral fingerprint sensor technology To stop inaccurate attendance marking, Matrix offered multispectral fingerprint sensor technology To overcome the problem of inaccurate attendance marking due to dirty/stained fingers, Matrix provided the multispectral fingerprint sensor technology which contains information about both the surface and the subsurface features of the skin. This technology gives a high throughput. They also acquired Palm Vein Reader for contactless authentication verification for the higher authorities. The solution from Matrix is fully customized with multiple shifts and attendance policies that can be applied to individual users. The smart mobile application for attendance marking and leave applications facilitate easy operation for users. Now, the customer is able to get the report of each employee with 200 different options. Auto-push technology With the auto-push technology, there is no need to transfer the data into the server. The data is automatically transferred to the server in real-time. The customer also got flexibility in terms of connectivity with 3G and WiFi options. The system from Matrix also provided the flexibility for easy integration with the third-party payroll system. Result: Accuracy in attendance management Centralized time-attendance and access control management High possibility of third-party integration User-friendly and fast process because of good quality sensor OEM support Contactless and advanced technology Flexibility in terms of integration, connectivity and credentials Products Offered: COSEC DOOR PVR – Palm Vein based Door Controller COSEC PATH DCFE – Biometric Fingerprint + RFID based Door Controller COSEC PATH DCCE – RFID based Door Controller COSEC PANEL LITE – Site Controller for Advanced Access Control Features COSEC LE PLATFORM – For 1500 + Users COSEC LE TAM – Time-Attendance Application Module COSEC LE ACM – Access Control Module COSEC LE ESS – Employees Self Service Module (Mobile App) COSEC INTEGRATION - Integration with In-house Payroll Software
The Headquarters Business Park developed by Adeem Al-Watania is a 52 story office building located on the coast site of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. When completed in 2012, it became the tallest building in Jeddah and is served by a large 11-story parking garage. Nedap’s Long-Range Identification solutions provide seamless vehicle access to employees and long-term tenants. The devices were successful installed and integrated with Lenel access control system OnGuard by Idex Services. The Headquarters Business Park Tower This tallest skyscraper, towering above Jeddah’s North Corniche and with a unique “Sail of a dhow” design, is an iconic structure in the commercial hub of Saudi Arabia. The iconic business park consists of offices, clinics, restaurants, entertainment facilities and a luxurious hotel. It has three main sections, the West tower housing 52 floors, East tower housing a luxurious hotel with 16 floors and a mid-section with 11 story parking facility comprising of 2.000 parking spots which connects the West and East towers. Need for hands-free vehicle access Multiple entry and exit points to the vehicle parking facility had to be provided with an automated system With the exemplary design of the tower, there was a need for an all-in-one innovative vehicle and driver access control solution which can provide seamless integration with best performance which is in line with the state-of-art services to tenants in one of the most sophisticated buildings in Jeddah. Multiple entry and exit points to the vehicle parking facility had to be provided with an automated system, for convenient, hands-free access to authorized vehicles of office employees and long-term tenants. An efficient solution was identified, with a combination of Automatic Number Plate Recognition and Long-Range RFID (Radiofrequency Identification for Automatic Vehicle Identification). Touchless vehicle access to employees Nedap’s uPASS Reach, based on passive UHF technology read-range up to 5 meters in combination with UHF Windshield tags Nedap’s uPASS Reach, based on passive UHF technology read-range up to 5 meters in combination with UHF Windshield tags is used to provide convenient vehicle access to employees. UHF Tags, which are thin, flexible, tamper resistant and maintenance free are assigned to vehicles of employees who work in the 256 office units. When the registered vehicle with UHF tag installed approaches the long-range UHF RFID reader installed near the barrier, the vehicle is automatically identified and access is granted for authorized vehicles to the parking facility. Parking access to tenants based on LPR Nedap’s ANPR series – License plate recognition camera with an accurate read-range at several metres The iconic tower with sea-view includes a luxurious hotel and it is observed that tenants stay for a longer duration or prefer coming back on regular basis. To provide a seamless experience to tenants and ensure smooth flow of vehicles and drivers into the parking facility, there was a need for a solution which could grant tenant vehicles access temporarily or incidentally. Nedap’s ANPR series – License plate recognition camera with an accurate read-range at several metres – ensures tenant number plates are registered and required access rights can be easily granted in the backend application. Securing the 11 floor parking facility With the parking facility being the main entry point to both the West and East tower, it was very necessary to meet high-security standards and control the flow of vehicles. The proposed solution required to have seamless integration with the existing Lenel access control system OnGuard. The open architecture of Lenel and Nedap supporting variety of industry-standard communication interfaces, enabled seamless integration and successful implementation of the products by Idex services. Customized reports with the required log were easily accessible after the successful integration.
At the Inholland University of Applied Sciences, a rolling project to upgrade access control at all locations has been ongoing for several years. Typical of any large educational setting, the tension between remaining open and accessible on the one hand — and securing people, equipment and data on the other — is a critical factor. More than 500 Aperio wireless door locking devices have now been deployed at 7 separate Inholland campus sites. These battery-powered locks provide tested and trusted protection for the university’s most important areas and rooms, including offices and exam storage spaces. Aperio devices fit all kinds of interior openings, including wooden and glass doors, as well as fire doors. Aperio cylinders, escutcheons, handles and security locks have in-built RFID readers for installer and user convenience. Integration with Nedap AEOS access control system All Inholland’s new Aperio devices are fully and seamlessly integrated with the university’s Nedap AEOS access control system. A single credential allows users to unlock all authorized openings managed by the AEOS system — whether wired or Aperio-protected doors. Because Aperio locking devices are wireless, they were installed and initiated quickly — without disruption to Inholland buildings or their students’ working day. And choosing Aperio saved more than just time. A recent ASSA ABLOY benchmarking study finds installer labor costs are over 80% lower for wireless versus wired locks. The ongoing cost of running battery-operated wireless locks is also much lower than for equivalent wired electronic locks, which require an “always on” connection to mains electricity to maintain secure status. In addition, choosing Aperio gives Inholland the ability to roll out enhancements over time, as needs, budgets and priorities evolved. Aperio devices can be added and integrated gradually, with no need to replace existing systems. Inholland’s investment remains totally future-proofed. Programmable RFID credential Fitting Aperio wireless escutcheons and locks to critical doors ensures university staff, students, visitors and confidential information are safe without impacting site accessibility. Authorized users open relevant secure doors conveniently with a programmable RFID credential. Aperio’s inherent flexibility makes it easy to adjust any space’s level of protection at any time. So, locking status is regularly reconfigured as needs and usage evolves around the multi-site campus and university facilities. Smart building systems Based on their experience to date with Aperio, Inholland are already planning for the future. A new university in Amsterdam will become a smart building and will require access control able to integrate with smart building systems. Aperio is built on an open platform, designed for interoperability, so this is a natural fit. Inholland will enter pilot stage for their new smart building soon. “I am very satisfied with the implementation and operation of the Aperio solution and I have every confidence in ASSA ABLOY as a manufacturer,” concludes Frans Bruggeman, Facility Services Consultant at Inholland.
Slovakian integrator, RYS, has recently deployed a system that provides a textbook example of how RFID access control can concretely improve people’s lives every day. Before automatic access control was introduced there, a Bratislava apartment building, known as ‘The Pentagon’, had suffered a reputation as a place to avoid. RFID access control system Drug dealers, vandals, and a similar criminal element were a chronic presence, leaving residents constantly feeling unsafe in their own homes. Idesco customer RYS was contracted to design and deploy an RFID access control system to better guarantee safety and enhance the residents’ quality of life. With over 30 years specialized experience in residential building access control, RYS designed a solution and chose Idesco to supply the over 100 RFID readers to be deployed. Currently, those readers control both ground floor access and section/hallway entrances on each floor. Elevator readers restrict residents’ access to their own floors. Access to only RFID tag-holding residents The system even restricts access to the building’s waste bins, ensuring their use only by its RFID tag-holding residents. Simultaneously, the entire system collects real time data about access events, including unclosed doors or unauthorized access attempts, to help strengthen prevention and control. Due to the building’s history of vandalism, RYS recognized the importance of choosing readers capable of withstanding malicious impacts, moisture and dust. Idesco optical tamper Idesco’s optical tamper proved better than many other readers whose manufacturers rely on mechanical tampers" Marcela Benuskova, RYS Assistant Project Manager, commented “Idesco’s optical tamper proved better than many other readers whose manufacturers rely on mechanical tampers. Whereas alarms should be sent whenever a reader is intentionally mishandled, mechanical tampers trigger false alarms more often than those cued optically.” Marcela continues, “The technical solutions Idesco and RYS implemented, combined with the efforts of an excellent crisis management team, triggered almost unbelievable changes inside that apartment building. Our access control not only strengthened crime prevention immediately, but also empowered law enforcement in discouraging unwanted or illegal activity.” Enhanced building security He adds, “As that building’s security increased, the market value of individual flats began trending upward. Today, the building’s residents feel safer and they have actually started thinking positively about their community’s future.” Marcela Benuskova with RYS closed by stating, “Idesco’s team is so nice to work with; they always respond fast, with a friendly, professional and positive attitude. Any technical question or problem gets looked at, given proper thought and action. They have always been open to, and repeatedly implemented, product changes we asked for.”
Slovakian integrator RYS, recently deployed a system that provides a textbook example of how RFID access control can concretely improve people’s lives every day. Before automatic access control was introduced there, a Bratislava apartment building, known as ‘The Pentagon’, had suffered a reputation as a place to avoid. Drug dealers, vandals, and a similar criminal element were a chronic presence, leaving residents constantly feeling unsafe in their own homes. Idesco customer RYS was contracted to design and deploy an RFID access control system to better guarantee safety and enhance the residents quality of life. Access control readers The system even restricts access to the building’s waste bins, ensuring their use only by its RFID tag-holding residents With over 30 years specialized experience in residential building access control, Rys designed a solution and chose Idesco to supply the over 100 readers to be deployed. Today, those 7 C 2.0 and 8 CD 2.0 readers control both first floor access and section/hallway entrances on each floor. Elevator readers restrict residents’ access to their own floors. The system even restricts access to the building’s waste bins, ensuring their used only by its RFID tag-holding residents. Simultaneously, the entire system collects real time data about access events, including unclosed doors or unauthorized access attempts, to help strengthen prevention and control. Due to the building’s history of vandalism, Rys recognized the importance of choosing readers capable of withstanding malicious impacts, not merely high IP67 protection from moisture, dust and dirt, but Idesco’s high, IK-09/10 impact durability (10-20 joules). Better tampering protection Marcela Benuskova, RYS assistant project manager, comments that Idesco’s optical tamper proved better than many other readers whose manufacturers rely on mechanical tampers. Whereas alarms should be sent whenever a reader is intentionally mishandled, mechanical tampers trigger false alarms more often than those cued optically. Marcela continues, “Idesco’s team is so nice to work with; they always respond fast, with a friendly, professional and positive attitude. Any technical question or problem gets looked at, given proper thought and action. They have always been open to, and repeatedly implemented, product changes we asked for. For example, they provided a special 8 CD 2.0 Compact reader module for our door phone, and customized orange lenses for our Basic readers. Product deliveries have always been timely and in proper condition. In short, Idesco has been a very reliable supplier for us, with great customer support. Additionally, their high quality, modern readers offer unique features such as RS232 connections, optical tampers, great security, all in addition to their high IK and IP ratings”, maintains Rys’ Marcela Benuskova. Engineering for future needs “They not only use the most modern technology but engineer for future needs. This lets us design new features in our access control systems. Despite their readers’ durability and reliability, they still look fresh and modern while still having the latest security features. This is exactly what we want from readers upon which we will build our systems. Even better, their stable pricing policy and frame order option greatly supports our own planning and product marketing cycles”, Marcela explains. She closes, “The technical solutions Idesco and Rys implemented, combined with the efforts of an excellent crisis management team, triggered almost unbelievable changes inside that apartment building. Our access control not only strengthened crime prevention immediately, but also empowered law enforcement in discouraging unwanted or illegal activity. As that building’s security increased, the market value of individual flats began trending upward. Today, the building’s residents feel more safe; they have actually started thinking positively about their community’s future.”
Marassi harbors, known as upcoming gateway to Egypt, is a community with a picturesque surrounding overlooking the turquoise Mediterranean Sea along the Alamein coastline. At this community one will find lavish residences that includes chalets, apartments, townhouses, villas, large marinas and signature hotels creating a lifestyle of sheer pleasure and luxury vacation destination. Secured access points to such an extravagant, lavish community is fundamental as the community is occupied by highly influential people, including high-ranking Egypt government officials. Streamlined access Until recently, manual security checks of vehicles and people were carried out at the community access to comply with the security requirements. As manual security checks were not only time consuming, but also resulted in queuing, the need for a secure and convenient access experience arose. Deluxe communities, like Marassi, strive for an automated frictionless, streamlined vehicle and people access process. Identifying tenant vehicles To automate vehicle access at the gates, Nedap’s UHF RFID uPass Reach readers, with a read range up to 5 meters, are implemented. Combined with Nedap’s UHF windshield-mounted tags, these readers are used for automatic vehicle access. The UHF tags are issued to registered tenant vehicles and when the vehicle comes within the read-range, the tag is identified and granted access. The UHF windshield tag is battery-free and maintenance-free, making it the most effective solution provide secure and seamless vehicle access. E-gate entry to residents Marassi residents manage their digital access card through the community app developed by EMAAR. Digital access cards are used as identifiers and are stored in user’s smartphones. Nedap’s multi-technology reader makes use of smartphones to identify people utilizing Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and NearField Communication (NFC) technologies. The solution has provided Marassi tenants with easy and secure access to the community and beach. Residents manage visitor access Visitor access to the community and beach is further simplified by enabling the residents to generate guest requests through the app. Besides supporting BLE and NFC technology, Nedap’s multi-technology reader includes a QR reader that enables scanning QR-codes displayed on a smartphone. Residents can share the QR code with guests. The guest presents the QR-code to the reader and access to the property is granted frictionless. Implementation of such an integrated solution has provided a high level of convenience to all users at Marassi. The reliable solution has also reduced the congestion at the entry gate, securing the flow of vehicles and reducing the waiting period for guests.
Round table discussion
The new year comes with new opportunities for the security industry, but what technologies will dominate our discussions in 2020? Topics such as artificial intelligence (AI) and HCI (hyperconverged infrastructure) became familiar in conversations during 2019, and they are likely to dominate our thoughts again in the new year. But other buzzwords are also gaining steam, such as “blockchain” and “frictionless access control.” Connectivity and the cloud will also be timely technology topics as the industry evolves. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What technology buzz will dominate the security industry in 2020?
The ability to treat patients in a secure environment is a base requirement of hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Whether facilities are large or small, security challenges abound, including perimeter security, access control of sensitive areas, video surveillance, and even a long list of cyber-risks. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the security challenges of hospitals and the healthcare industry?
Using a smart phone as an access control credential is an idea whose time has come – or has it? The flexible uses of smart phones are transforming our lives in multiple ways, and the devices are replacing everything from our alarm clocks to our wallets to our televisions. However, the transformation from using a card to using a mobile credential for access control is far from a no-brainer for many organizations, which obstacles to a fast or easy transition. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: When will mobile credentials dominate access control, and what are the obstacles to greater adoption?
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