March Networks®, global video surveillance and video-based business intelligence pioneer announces that its Dubai office has been awarded ISO 9001:2015 certification for its Quality Management System (QMS). The globally recognized accreditation is based on the implementation of several management principles that help to ensure customers receive consistent, high-quality products and services that meet and exceed their expectations. The certification demonstrates the Dubai office’s comm...
The modern meaning of surveillance has reshaped itself. It is more than just capturing or recording the footage or monitoring the premises continuously. Enterprises expect video surveillance devices to assist them in decision-making. Sufficing the same need, Matrix has developed their range of surveillance devices for modern enterprises that encompass smart features to help enterprises mitigate the threats in real-time. Matrix offers their Professional Series Bullet IP cameras, a compact yet po...
Surveillance monitoring for small and medium-sized sites could be a tough challenge at night. Options are often limited to day/night cameras and low-light cameras (sometimes referred to as Starlight cameras). These devices continue to provide color images when lighting levels reduce up to a point but switch to black and white when they deteriorate further. But to maintain color images in low light conditions with these cameras, other aspects of the image – such as noise and definition &nd...
Amberstone Security, one of Europe’s suppliers of intelligence-led manned guarding, security technology solutions, and loss prevention services have announced a security services contract with supermarket giant, Tesco. Amberstone Security will provide security solutions for over 330 Tesco stores across Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Northern England to help keep customers and staff safe while they shop and work. The Essex-based security company impressed during a&...
Video is an enormous wellspring of unstructured data in the enterprise environment. Finding new ways to use video data requires easy access for analysis. Gone are the days when video was recorded just to be played back later. New computer capabilities can analyze video to provide business intelligence and trends, all of which requires that a lot of unstructured data be captured, stored and kept immediately accessible. It's a driving force for companies specializing in video storage such as Quan...
Tech-enabled mobile security service provider, The Keyholding Company, partners with disruptive electronic key safe supplier, Keynetics, to shake up traditional keyholding, alarm response, and access services by removing the need for external keyholders, saving clients thousands and significantly improving response times. The new offering is part of The Keyholding Company‘s smart access service, a range of smart lock solutions for businesses that utilize cloud-connected devices to streaml...
Pyronix launches its all-in-one security solution, the Enforcer V11, with Pyronix AndroidTablet, HomeControlHUB app, and SmartPlug. Incorporating security, automation, and video in one platform, conveniently accessed via the tablet interface, the Enforcer V11 takes security and control to new heights for homes and businesses. “The V11 platform is a major hardware and software upgrade to the Enforcer range of control panels, which brings with it several new and exciting elements. It adds the ability to use the new Pyronix Touchscreen Tablet Control Station, which is based on the 10-inch Pyronix AndroidTablet combined with the new dedicated HomeControlHUB app.” “The Touchscreen Tablet Control Station is connected to the local network via the Wi-Fi communicator and becomes a local programming tool and user interface to the home or business owners’ system, with the ability to not only control the Enforcer but also the user’s camera system and SmartPlugs from one unified experience,” said Valeri Filianov, Pyronix’ Product Director. Communication module Pyronix Touch Screen Tablet Control Station connects over the local Wi-Fi network The Enforcer V11 hardware allows two paths of communication with the Wi-Fi module built on-board and an optional second communication module. This, therefore, allows for simultaneous messaging to an Alarm Receiving Center (ARC) and app via separate paths; maximizing coverage for complete peace of mind. Installation is also enhanced, with a WPS button that means pairing the panel with the router can be done with the push of a button. The Pyronix Touch Screen Tablet Control Station connects over the local Wi-Fi network, providing a secure and encrypted local connection to the panel even when the internet connection is interrupted. Innovative features The Enforcer V11 expands and enhances system application capabilities, with a range of new and innovative features to practically cover any installation requirement. This includes unsupervised zones to deliver car, van, and caravan coverage; adding security peripherals for additional peace of mind when parked outside the property. While occupancy timers on zones provide a new care feature; protecting elderly family members by setting timers to generate a push or voice push notification to a family member via the mobile app, or even a notification to an ARC if no movement has been detected. Smart home integration The introduction of the new SmartPlug provides installers further upsell advantages and opportunities, by entering the smart home market with value-added integration. This provides smart home integration so that users can manage any plug-in appliance at the touch of the AndroidTablet’s screen via the HomeControlHUB app, where they can also access their cameras and security, even using the ‘sound-on-demand’ function to activate the siren to ward off intruders. Touchscreen display control AndroidTablet not only allows users to surf the web but also opens the HomeControlHUB app for control of the Enforcer V11 The AndroidTablet not only allows users to surf the web but also opens the HomeControlHUB app (available to download from the Google Play Store) for complete control of the Enforcer V11 from the touchscreen keypad display. The interface pulls the installer’s branding from their PyronixCloud account to deliver a consistent, uniform, and professional system throughout, including a quick share option for users to send installer details to friends and family. The interface can even be used by the installer as a portable keypad on maintenance visits while existing ProControl+ accounts can be connected to pull other Hikvision/Pyronix cameras on the property in to view via HomeControlHUB. One-platform solution “Changing user requirements means we need to constantly evolve. The innovations of the Enforcer V11 make it the most flexible solution we’ve ever released to the market,” Laurence Kenny, Pyronix’s Marketing Director, said. He continued, “This marks a significant milestone in the development of the Enforcer system; a complete one-platform solution that protects the property, its occupants, the perimeter, vans, caravans, elderly relatives and much more, while also providing access to camera streams and controlling smart devices around the home.” “The capabilities aren’t going to stop here either, as we’re continuously working on innovations that are going to continue to extend the solution moving forward.” Plug in to the potential and extend the security offering with the Enforcer V11, AndroidTablet, HomeControlHUB app, and SmartPlug.
Hikvision’s expansive lineup of PanoVu panoramic cameras allows facilities to monitor vast coverage areas without having to invest in purchasing and installing dozens of surveillance cameras. The expansive PanoVu series features up to 32 megapixels of resolution and are available in a variety of 180° or 360° configurations and feature sets. “Our PanoVu panoramic cameras provide wide area coverage with outstanding value by enabling one camera to replace up to four standard cameras. In addition to reducing the cost of purchasing multiple cameras, these competitively priced panoramic cameras also greatly reduce installation costs,” said John Xiao, Vice President Marketing, Hikvision USA. Video compression technology Hikvision PanoVu cameras are available with 180° or 360° fields of view in 8 MP, 20 MP, or 32 MP resolution and feature supplemental IR and panoramic lighting to capture clear images in extremely dark environments. Panoramic 180°/360° IR models feature four sensors running a high frame rate All PanoVu cameras employ H.265+ video compression technology for efficient video transmission and storage. Four different PanoVu configurations are available: Panoramic 180°/360° IR models feature four sensors running a high frame rate, full 180° stitched images, up to 32 MP resolution, and a 40x optical zoom PTZ. Flexible Series IR models feature four individual sensors with motorized 2.8 mm - 12 mm auto focus lenses and a track design with gimbals that allows each sensor to be independently placed. Recess mount and smaller form factor units are also available. PanoVu Mini IR models feature three sensors running high frame rates and one PTZ for detailed views. Dual-directional series IR models feature a dual-lens design to capture two separate wide-angle views, ideal for specialized use in hallways, parking lots, and retail applications.
Quantum Corporation (Quantum) announced a definitive agreement to acquire the assets of EnCloudEn, an early stage hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) Software Company. This agreement follows Quantum’s recent acquisition of the surveillance business assets of Pivot3, an early pioneer of hyper-converged infrastructure for video surveillance workloads. EnCloudEn acquisition The EnCloudEn acquisition will enable Quantum to expand the addressable market for the company’s video surveillance portfolio, offering customers a solution, using their server hardware of choice, with a flexible subscription-based software model. EnCloudEn’s approach to simplicity and automation integrates tightly with Quantum’s strategy to offer customers intuitive end-to-end solutions for the video data lifecycle. “The recent acquisition of Pivot3’s surveillance business assets brought a customer-proven solution, an established customer base, an established go-to-market, and an experienced team for the mission-critical video surveillance and physical security market.” said Jamie Lerner, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at Quantum Corporation. Open and flexible HCI software stack The addition of EnCloudEn technology brings an open and flexible HCI software stack" Jamie Lerner adds, “The addition of EnCloudEn technology brings an open and flexible HCI software stack that strengthens our position in the video surveillance and physical security market. We can now extend HCI solutions to a broader set of customers, accelerate our development roadmap for HCI-based solutions and employ a subscription-based software purchasing model, which is fast becoming the way businesses want to procure and manage their software investments.” EnCloudEn was founded in 2015 and is headquartered in Bangalore, India. The company built an HCI software stack that delivers software-defined compute, storage and networking, in one virtualized platform, and is used by large banks, engineering companies, and pharmaceutical industries in India. EnCloudEn HCI software The EnCloudEn HCI software is hardware-agnostic, easy to manage, and simple to purchase in a pay-as-you-go model. EnCloudEn's feature-rich, hyper-converged platform allows surveillance customers to not just store video data, but run the video management system (VMS), access control, card readers, analytics, and other HCI workloads on the same platform, while bundling in the best enterprise data center security features. Some key benefits of EnCloudEn’s software platform include: Ability to support a wide range of x86 server hardware from systems vendors, such as Dell, Lenovo, HP, Cisco, IBM, Supermicro, and much more Software-defined hybrid storage pooling that can handle mixed storage media (HDD, SSD, etc.) and differing system capacities, including the incorporation of large SANs Feature-rich hyper-converged private cloud platform with policy-driven resource orchestration Lower total cost of ownership (TCO) through the strategic use of open source, including a built-in KVM based hypervisor for ease of deployment and management Advanced m+k erasure coding across all nodes for extreme resiliency Automatic cache tiering for high-performance use cases A whole set of storage data services, such as in-line compression, de-duplication, snapshots, and quality of service policies on workloads Quantum global engineering facility in India It also establishes a new Quantum global engineering facility in India This technology acquisition adds key technical talent with expertise in hyper-converged infrastructure, cloud operations, and enterprise sales, along with several Red Hat certified engineers. It also establishes a new Quantum global engineering facility in India, as the company expands into more addressable markets, including India and the rest of Asia. “When Quantum acquired the Pivot3 surveillance business assets, the acquisition expanded our ability to address physical security projects of every size and scope and manage the video surveillance data lifecycle from initial capture through expiration,” said Curt Wittich, Vice President of Sales - Strategic Markets at Quantum Corporation. Asset acquisition Curt Wittich adds, “This message has been resonating with customers and partners, and the EnCloudEn technology allows us to further expand on that strategy in every way.” The asset acquisition is expected to close later this quarter and is subject to customary closing conditions.
An extended range of HD and UHD video cameras from IDIS gives systems integrators and their end-user customer's affordable alternatives for NDAA-compliant video. The NDAA line-up now includes a range of 2MP, 5MP, and 8MP camera models, which are ideal for applications of any size from small to medium sites such as retail outlets, hotels, local government facilities, and offices through to enterprise users such as utilities, school, and university campuses, logistics, and large commercial buildings. Those sites needing ultra-high-definition (UHD) coverage will benefit especially from the 8MP models which deliver sharp image capture even in low light conditions. Plug-and-play connection The new lineup gives the benefits of IDIS’s signature DirectIP® plug-and-play connection to a choice of NVRs or servers and comes with IR, True WDR, IDIS Smart Failover, and alarm in/out, with options for two-way audio and vandal resistance. IDIS’s Korean-made cameras assure fast, seamless installation, and low maintenance IDIS’s Korean-made cameras also assure fast, seamless installation and low maintenance, extended warranties, and a choice of license-free IDIS Center for up to 1024 devices or the modular and scalable IDIS Solution Suite, which combine to give users a lower total cost of ownership (TCO). NDAA compliant technology For the growing number of projects which now require compliance with section 889 of the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, IDIS offers a safe choice and an alternative project route. The stringent requirements of the NDAA together with growing concerns about the manufacturing origin of video equipment are already starting to influence applications more widely, not just in the U.S. but in developed markets including Europe, the Middle East, Australasia, and parts of Asia. As Korea’s largest in-country video manufacturer with a track record of installations globally – from mission-critical sites to small businesses – IDIS promises to provide one of the most proven, dependable tech migration routes. IDIS video technology is a safe choice IDIS gives the assurance of Korean design and manufacturing, multi-layered cyber security protection “We are still seeing the problem of ghost-branding and hidden supply chains making it confusing for systems integrators who are trying to locate the best NDAA-compliant tech,” says James Min, Managing Director, IDIS Europe. “Leading manufacturers are still using OEM products or components from prohibited suppliers, and this is not always obvious.” He added that IDIS gives the assurance of Korean design and manufacturing, industry-leading warranties, multi-layered cyber security protection, inherent failover, and respect for international licenses and regulations. “This means that for many video projects such as those deployed at multi-national companies, and increasingly medium-sized companies with US connections or those with plans to expand into the U.S. market - IDIS video technology is now among the safest choices.”
Keyless Technologies, the privacy-preserving, identity company announced FIDO2 Certification for its proprietary biometrics technology. This comes just months after Keyless became one of only seven providers globally to receive FIDO Biometrics Certification, validating that Keyless' facial recognition technology meets industry standards for user verification and spoofing detection accuracy. Achieving certification in both Biometrics and FIDO2 confirms that Keyless' biometric authentication software meets the highest global standards for authentication and makes Keyless unique in a market that is demanding ever more security, privacy, and crucially interoperability, all while simplifying and enhancing user experience. Passwordless and multi-factor authentication solutions The platform eliminates the need to store and manage sensitive information via a quick, intuitive user experience The Keyless biometrics platform enables organizations to deploy passwordless and multi-factor authentication solutions. The platform eliminates the need to store and manage sensitive information, enabling organizations to protect their users with one, simple action, via a quick, intuitive user experience. The technology combines multi-modal biometrics with advanced cryptography, leveraging distributed cloud architecture. Due to the way Keyless leverages these technologies, privacy is preserved for the user and regulatory requirements, such as GDPR and PSD2 are not just met, but exceeded. This has a meaningful impact not just on employees, but on organizations relying on strong customer authentication in areas such as mobile banking and payments. Also, there is no need to rely on the device hardware or operating system, which means organizations can innovate and deploy their applications and services faster, regardless of which devices their employees use - for example replacing hardware tokens and instead of using cellphones as security keys. Next-gen biometric authentication Keyless is integrating the FIDO2 certified technology into both its workforce and consumer offerings"In today's digital world, the average person needs to remember more than 100 passwords so it's no wonder that Verizon attributes 84% of security breaches to compromised passwords. Organizations are now working to adopt zero-trust; identity-first security to protect their users and our mission at Keyless is to make accessing digital services seamless, safe, and private from any device.” “ Achieving these two certifications from The FIDO Alliance is a crucial step on that journey and we're proud to be the first to bring the next generation of biometric authentication to the market," said Andrea Carmignani, CEO and Co-Founder at Keyless. Keyless is integrating the FIDO2 certified technology into both its workforce and consumer offerings, enabling organizations to choose whether to use FIDO2 when implementing Keyless for employees or consumers.
A new NW Security study of 103 medium and large-sized firms across England with existing CCTV systems, found that where an external security systems installer, integrator, or security management company is involved, some key video analytics has been much more widely adopted and deployed. Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) is already deployed in nearly two-thirds (62%) of existing CCTV systems across the country where security systems management is outsourced to an external security company or managed with the help of an independent security systems installer or integrator. Where CCTV systems are managed entirely in-house, ANPR is fully deployed in less than half of the systems (48%). Video Motion Detection (VMD) VMD is available and already deployed where security systems management is outsourced or managed Video Motion Detection (VMD) is available and already deployed in well over half (57%) of existing CCTV systems across the country where security systems management is outsourced to an external security company or managed with the help of an independent security systems installer or integrator. But where CCTV systems are managed entirely in-house, VMD is fully deployed in less than half of systems (49%). Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Optical Character Recognition (OCR) analysis, sometimes used to improve the accuracy of ANPR or to track deliveries of parcels, pallets, or containers of goods, is also deployed in 62% of the systems run with the help of external experts. However, where CCTV systems were managed entirely in-house, only 41% of systems said they had deployed OCR analytics. People counting People counting, which has been widely deployed in the retail sector, for example, has been deployed in 52% of CCTV systems which are run with the help of external security specialists. However, where CCTV systems were managed entirely in-house, only 38% of systems confirmed they had already deployed people counting analytics. Nearly half (48%) of CCTV system owners have already deployed objection detection and classification analytics to improve the effectiveness of their systems and in this rare incidence, the same level of deployment was recorded regardless of whether the system was run entirely in-house or with the help of external parties. Widespread adoption of video analytics Outside security system installers or integrators are involved in supporting medium and large-sized firms Frank Crouwel, Managing Director of NW Security, commented, “It’s interesting to analyze that where outside security system installers or integrators are involved in supporting medium and large-sized firms running video monitoring systems, there is more widespread deployment of major video analytics including VMD, ANPR, OCR, and people counting.” “Odd then that only a fifth (21%) of firms running camera systems are currently outsourcing any work to third party specialists, even as video analytics deployments offer so much potential for improving CCTV system efficacy and delivering a faster return on investment.” “What this shows is that an increasing number of third party experts are recommending the wider deployment of video analytics, safe in the knowledge that they have the skills and capabilities to configure the right video analytics solutions to assure the increased accuracy of CCTV systems in line with their customers’ operational needs.” External involvement for in-house CCTV systems Where CCTV system improvements include more board-level regulatory or legal compliance, risk management, or cybersecurity systems hardening, third-party experts are much more likely to be supporting in-house CCTV systems, management teams. So, nearly half (43%) of all companies supported by external security specialists had a live project to improve their ‘system’s ‘hardening’ to combat cybersecurity threats’ as a ‘top priority which they were aiming to improve considerably by the end of 2021, whereas for firms running their CCTV systems in-house, just 35% of them were focused on hardening physical security systems against cyber-attacks right now. Over half (52%) of all firms supported by external security specialists had a top priority project running to improve ‘GDPR compliance and data protection procedures surrounding our CCTV system’. Whereas for firms running their CCTV systems entirely in-house, 45% of them were focused on improving their GDPR compliance capabilities associated with their physical security system by the end of this year. Improving physical security systems Firms running their CCTV systems entirely in-house, 48% were focused on system resilience, backup systems ‘Improvement on the CCTV system’s resilience and back-up systems and procedures’ was a 2021 top priority for over half (52%) of firms where third-party security installers, integrators, or alarm receiving service providers were involved. Whereas for firms running their CCTV systems entirely in-house, 48% of them were focused on system resilience, backup systems, and procedures. Over two thirds (70%) of the chief executives responsible for their physical security systems which NW Security reached in this study, put ‘Improvement on the system’s resilience and back-up systems and procedures as a top priority for 2021 and 62% of proprietors and business owners placed ‘Improvement of GDPR compliance/data protection procedures surrounding our CCTV system’ as a ‘top priority’ in 2021. Cybersecurity protection and GDPR compliance Frank Crouwel, Managing Director of NW Security, added, “It’s interesting to note that where senior management issues such as cybersecurity protection and GDPR compliance is the top priority for firms right now, external security specialists are much more likely to be working alongside in-house security, FM and IT teams.” “The more strategic the issue and the larger potential threat it poses to business continuity, the more likely that system improvement budgets will be greenlit, and an outsourced specialist pulled in to help out.” “Overall, what the research shows is that where external security systems specialists are involved, a more holistic discussion is enabled which can go beyond the optimization of existing security systems to deliver an array of strategically important business and operational benefits.”
Video surveillance systems are producing more unstructured data than ever before. A dramatic decrease in camera costs in recent years has led many businesses to invest in comprehensive surveillance coverage, with more cameras generating more data. Plus, advances in technology mean that the newest (8K) cameras are generating approximately 800% more data than their predecessors (standard definition). Traditional entry-level solutions like network video recorders (NVRs) simply aren’t built to handle massive amounts of data in an efficient, resilient and cost-effective manner. This has left many security pioneers grappling with a data storage conundrum. Should they continue adding more NVR boxes? Or is there another, better, route? Retaining video data In short, yes. To future proof their video surveillance infrastructure, an increasing number of businesses are adopting an end-to-end surveillance architecture with well-integrated, purpose-built platforms for handling video data through its lifecycle. This presents significant advantages in terms of security, compliance and scalability, as well as unlocking new possibilities for data enrichment. All of this with a lower total cost of ownership than traditional solutions. Security teams would typically delete recorded surveillance footage after a few days or weeks Previously, security teams would typically delete recorded surveillance footage after a few days or weeks. However, thanks to increasingly stringent legal and compliance demands, many are now required to retain video data for months or even years. There’s no doubt that this can potentially benefit investigations and increase prosecutions, but it also puts significant pressure on businesses’ storage infrastructure. Data lifecycle management This necessitates a more intelligent approach to data lifecycle management. Rather than simply storing video data in a single location until it’s wiped, an end-to-end video surveillance solution can intelligently migrate data to different storage platforms and media as it ages. So, how does this work? Video is recorded and analyzed on a combination of NVR, hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) and application servers. Then, it’s moved to resilient file storage for a pre-determined period, where it can be immediately retrieved and accessed for review. Finally, based on policies set by heads of security, data is moved from file storage to highly secure, low-cost archive storage such as an object, tape or cloud. Data is moved from file storage to highly secure, low-cost archive storage Long-Term storage This process is known as tiering. It allows businesses to use reliable, inexpensive long-term storage for most of their data, whilst still enabling security pioneers to retrieve video data when the need arises, such as during a compliance audit, or to review footage following a security breach. In a nutshell, it offers them the best of both worlds. Scaling your video surveillance infrastructure can be a headache. Businesses that rely on NVRs – even high-end units with 64 or even 96 hard drives – are finding themselves running out of capacity increasingly quickly. In order to scale, security pioneers then have to procure new boxes. With NVRs, this inevitably involves a degree of guesswork. Should they go for the largest possible option, and risk over provisioning? Or perhaps a smaller option, and risk running out of capacity again? Common management console Security pioneers can easily add or remove storage capacity or compute resources – separately or together As businesses add new cameras or replace existing ones, many end up with inadequate surveillance infrastructure made up of multiple NVR boxes along with several application servers for running other surveillance functions such as access control, security photo databases, analytics, etc. This patchwork approach leaves security pioneers scrambling for capacity, maintaining various hardware footprints, repeating updates and checks across multiple systems, and taking up valuable time that could be better spent elsewhere. By contrast, flexible HCI surveillance platforms aggregate the storage and ecosystem applications to run on the same infrastructure and combine viewing under a common management console, avoiding ‘swivel chair’ management workflows. Plus, they offer seamless scalability. Security pioneers can easily add or remove storage capacity or compute resources – separately or together. Data storage solutions Over time, this ensures a lower total cost of ownership. First and foremost, it removes the risk of over provisioning and helps to control hardware sprawl. This in turn leads to hardware maintenance savings and lower power use. Many security pioneers are now looking beyond simple data storage solutions for their video surveillance footage. Meta tags can provide context around data, making it easier to find and access when needed Instead, they’re asking themselves how analyzing this data can enable their teams to work faster, more efficiently and productively. Implementing an end-to-end video surveillance architecture enables users to take advantage of AI and machine learning applications which can tag and enrich video surveillance data. These have several key benefits. Firstly, meta tags can provide context around data, making it easier to find and access when needed. Object storage platform For instance, if security teams are notified of a suspicious red truck, they can quickly find data with this tag, rather than manually searching through hours of data, which can feel like looking for a needle in a haystack. Plus, meta tags can be used to mark data for future analysis. This means that as algorithms are run over time, policies can be set to automatically store data in the right location. For example, if a video is determined to contain cars driving in and out of your premises, it would be moved to long-term archiving such as an object storage platform for compliance purposes. If, on the other hand, it contained 24 hours of an empty parking lot, it could be wiped. These same meta tags may be used to eventually expire the compliance data in the archive after it is no longer needed based on policy. Video surveillance architecture Continuing to rely on traditional systems like NVRs will fast become unsustainable for businesses Even if your organization isn’t using machine learning or artificial intelligence-powered applications to enhance your data today, it probably will be one, three, or even five years down the line. Implementing a flexible end-to-end video surveillance solution prepares you for this possibility. With new advances in technology, the quantity of data captured by video surveillance systems will continue rising throughout the coming decade. As such, continuing to rely on traditional systems like NVRs will fast become unsustainable for businesses. Looking forward, when moving to an end-to-end video surveillance architecture, security pioneers should make sure to evaluate options from different vendors. For true futureproofing, it’s a good idea to opt for a flexible, modular solution, which allow different elements to be upgraded to more advanced technologies when they become available.
Cloud-based technology can reduce IT costs, streamline application management and make infrastructure more flexible and scalable. So, it’s no surprise that cloud video surveillance solutions (also known as video surveillance as a service or VSaaS) are gaining momentum in a big way. In fact, according to recent reports, the VSaaS market is forecasted to increase at a compound annual growth rate of 10.4% by 2025. But some company owners may wonder – what services does a cloud model deliver and is such a solution right for my business? This article aims to help you determine what cloud video surveillance solution is right for your business and the benefits you can enjoy if you decide to deploy a VSaaS solution. Full cloud-based recording vs cloud-managed First, a bit of clarification on cloud video surveillance models, as definitions can vary from provider to provider. A full cloud-based recording solution is one in which both video recording and management are done offsite (for example, cameras streaming directly to the cloud). While this model can be a good option for some, many large enterprise businesses simply don’t have the bandwidth capacity or network resources required to upload all of their videos to the cloud. Even with the bandwidth capacity, this can be a cost-prohibitive model when hundreds or thousands of IP cameras are involved. A full cloud-based recording solution is one in which both video recording and management are done offsite But that doesn’t mean enterprise businesses can’t take advantage of cloud-managed video surveillance. With this solution, video recording and storage happen on your premises (with network video recorders (NVRs) or a video management system (VMS)), but the video management aspect is handled in the cloud by a third-party provider, usually as a subscription-based service. The provider hosts the central video server overseeing your on-premises devices. Some providers also allow you to back up portions of the video to the cloud, so you can store and share video evidence or select clips needed for investigations. This model combines the performance benefits of local recording with the convenience and cost savings of the cloud. Centralized video surveillance solution Perhaps the greatest benefit of using this type of cloud-managed video surveillance solution is centralization. Because all of your devices are centrally managed in the cloud, you don’t have to travel to a distant location to update a recorder or camera’s software – it’s all done remotely by the provider from a central location. This can save you both time and money, especially since it’s necessary to consistently monitor the configuration settings on cameras and NVRs to ensure they’re correct and functioning properly. If your hardware malfunctions and it isn’t detected immediately, instances of lost video can occur. And business owners know that losing video evidence of theft or fraud could have significant consequences to the efficiency and effectiveness of an investigation. Round the clock monitoring Some providers monitor for changes in cameras’ field of view, so if a camera is blocked or moved, you’ll be alerted With a cloud-managed model, you can rest assured that if a camera goes down or another technical issue arises, the provider will know and will handle it immediately so you can avoid unnecessary truck rolls, which can be costly. Some providers will even monitor for changes in your cameras’ field of view, so if a camera is blocked or moved, you’ll be alerted right away. This type of around-the-clock monitoring eliminates your need for an in-house data center and the IT staff necessary to maintain the video system. This is particularly important if you don’t have the infrastructure or the personnel to host your own video networking equipment. You can also save time with the deployment of your video surveillance solution since your provider will get your system up and running quickly. There’s no need to worry about setting up or configuring the central server or any application software – it’s all taken care of by your provider. Flexible and cost-effective In many cloud-managed solutions, you can also skip the large upfront capital cost of a video surveillance investment and pay a monthly fee for all of these services. This is particularly helpful if it’s difficult for your organization to make large capital investments. You may or may not have to invest in onsite devices (cameras and NVRs), depending on the provider you choose. Some providers will allow you to finance your hardware, while others will want you to purchase it upfront. Many cloud providers also offer robust web clients for viewing video and conducting investigations remotely Many cloud providers also offer robust web clients for viewing video and conducting investigations remotely. These do not require any local downloads, which saves you time and money by avoiding the need for additional IT resources. It also alleviates worrying about whether or not you have the latest version, as the clients are automatically updated. And if you don’t want to spend a lot of time on video analysis, some cloud-managed models offer predefined reports on what’s most important to you. For example, a list of potentially suspicious transactions matched with video – so you can quickly scan to investigate. Getting the right solution Determining whether a cloud-managed video surveillance solution is right for your business is a big decision involving many factors, including your business’s size, bandwidth, and network infrastructure, and overall budget for physical security. By considering the points above, the hope is that you can more easily determine which model is best for your business.
The last year revolutionized the way people work. When offices transitioned to work-from-home and worksites implemented social distancing, the security industry saw an overnight shift in what technologies our customers wanted. Now that businesses are bringing employees back to work in-person, management has broadened their focus to include healthy access in their security plans. Healthy access is a modern security concept that uses the latest technologies to blend employee and visitor health with automated security and digital transformation. This year, more leaders than ever are concerned with the health of their people – for good reason. Touchless Solutions Touchless solutions are at the forefront of security conversations because, suddenly, no one wants to touch anything in public. As a result, biometric solutions using face recognition have adapted to deliver a powerful and highly effective trifecta of solutions for physical security, health and workforce management. Face recognition is now considered to be the most accurate non-invasive method to identify and authenticate individuals Face recognition is now considered to be the most accurate non-invasive method to identify and authenticate individuals. Ongoing improvements like smarter algorithms, neural networks and artificial intelligence (AI) continue to improve face recognition’s performance. Well-known enhancements like faster processing and better camera functionality are quality-of-life improvements for traditional face recognition applications. Other advancements – like mask detection, face recognition while wearing a mask, mobile enrollment and more – are unique additions to this technology that effectively answer the needs of today without adding complex workflows. Biometric Face Recognition for Physical Security Even as pandemic mask restrictions lift, many businesses still require people to wear face masks to enter their facilities – a policy that will be with us for years to come. The sudden requirement for face masks in public stimulated the rapid development of a new face recognition application where security systems need to authenticate people with half their face covered. The ability to use a person’s biometrics to gain access eliminates the need for PINs or cards that can be forgotten, shared or stolen, so businesses familiar with the high security of biometrics cannot turn to less-secure means of authentication, and fingerprint is not a feasible option because that technology involves touching shared surfaces. Face recognition while wearing a mask is a highly relevant, timely advancement for businesses that need high security at their entry doors without compromising on mask mandates or personal comfort levels with illness avoidance. Biometric Face Recognition for Health Face recognition is touchless by nature and took center stage during the pandemic Face recognition is touchless by nature and took center stage during the pandemic as buildings migrated to contactless security to limit the spread of surface-borne illnesses. As more businesses reopen and bring office staff back, the demand for this fast, easy-to-use and touchless technology will continue to surge. Additionally, advanced face recognition solutions can be enhanced with thermographic cameras for elevated body temperature detection, which enables businesses to limit access to only people with healthy temperatures and prove that they are protecting healthy staff. To adhere to social distancing guidelines, businesses can take advantage of our society’s affinity for mobile apps. Remote enrollment is a feature of high-end face recognition solutions where people can enroll their faces using their phones – limiting the amount of time spent waiting in line, standing in front of a device or interacting with other people. Some solutions are also integrated with attestation questionnaires that allow people to self-declare symptoms or exposure to illnesses, which can help businesses make informed decisions to protect the health of their staff. The more your solution can accomplish, the more confidence your personnel can have that they are healthy at your building. Biometric Face Recognition for Workforce Management Returning to work is now a monumental undertaking. One of the biggest challenges for business owners is balancing hybrid work-from-home schedules and socially distanced in-person shifts. Every business will have a unique approach to what work in a post-pandemic world looks like. Touchless, mask-inclusive technology and attestation are user-friendly solutions that help businesses protect staff health This adds a new layer of complexity to shift scheduling that management must address to maintain the simplicity of shift changes and accuracy of time tracking. Touchless, mask-inclusive technology and attestation are user-friendly solutions that help businesses follow mask rules, ensure high security, protect staff health and keep shift changes fast and easy. Advancements in face recognition align with the timing of getting employees back to work because of work done by proactive security leaders. The “face” of biometrics has forever changed. This industry is no longer represented by antiquated fingerprint technology. Instead, we are represented by modern, accessible face recognition with room to grow for physical security, health and workforce management – the trifecta of healthy buildings.
A new generation of video cameras is poised to boost capabilities dramatically at the edge of the IP network, including more powerful artificial intelligence (AI) and higher resolutions, and paving the way for new applications that would have previously been too expensive or complex. Technologies at the heart of the coming new generation of video cameras are Ambarella’s newest systems on chips (SoCs). Ambarella’s CV5S and CV52S product families are bringing a new level of on-camera AI performance and integration to multi-imager and single-imager IP cameras. Both of these SoCs are manufactured in the ‘5 nm’ manufacturing process, bringing performance improvements and power savings, compared to the previous generation of SoCs manufactured at ‘10nm’. CV5S and CV52S AI-powered SoCs The CV5S, designed for multi-imager cameras, is able to process, encode and perform advanced AI on up to four imagers at 4Kp30 resolution, simultaneously and at less than 5 watts. This enables multi-headed camera designs with up to four 4K imagers looking at different portions of a scene, as well as very high-resolution, single-imager cameras of up to 32 MP resolution and beyond. The CV52S, designed for single-imager cameras with very powerful onboard AI, is the next-generation of the company’s successful CV22S mainstream 4K camera AI chip. This new SoC family quadruples the AI processing performance, while keeping the same low power consumption of less than 3 watts for 4Kp60 encoding with advanced AI processing. Faster and ubiquitous AI capabilities Ambarella’s newest AI vision SoCs for security, the CV5S and CV52S, are competitive solutions" “Security system designers desire higher resolutions, increasing channel counts, and ever faster and more ubiquitous AI capabilities,” explains John Lorenz, Senior Technology and Market Analyst, Computing, at Yole Développement (Yole), a French market research firm. John Lorenz adds, “Ambarella’s newest AI vision SoCs for security, the CV5S and CV52S, are competitive solutions for meeting the growing demands of the security IC (integrated circuit) sector, which our latest report forecasts to exceed US$ 4 billion by 2025, with two-thirds of that being chips with AI capabilities.” Edge AI vision processors Ambarella’s new CV5S and CV52S edge AI vision processors enable new classes of cameras that would not have been possible in the past, with a single SoC architecture. For example, implementing a 4x 4K multi-imager with AI would have traditionally required at least two SoCs (at least one for encoding and one for AI), and the overall power consumption would have made those designs bulky and prohibitively expensive. By reducing the number of required SoCs, the CV5S enables advanced camera designs such as AI-enabled 4x 4K imagers at price points much lower than would have previously been possible. “What we are usually trying to do with our SoCs is to keep the price points similar to the previous generations, given that camera retail prices tend to be fairly fixed,” said Jerome Gigot, Ambarella's Senior Director of Marketing. 4K multi-imager cameras “However, higher-end 4K multi-imager cameras tend to retail for thousands of dollars, and so even though there will be a small premium on the SoC for the 2X improvement in performance, this will not make a significant impact to the final MSRP of the camera,” adds Jerome Gigot. In addition, the overall system cost might go down, Gigot notes, compared to what could be built today because there is no longer a need for external chips to perform AI, or extra components for power dissipation. The new chips will be available in the second half of 2021, and it typically takes about 12 to 18 months for Ambarella’s customers (camera manufacturers) to produce final cameras. Therefore, the first cameras, based on these new SoCs, should hit the market sometime in the second half of 2022. Reference boards for camera manufacturers The software on these new SoCs is an evolution of our unified Linux SDK" As with Ambarella’s previous generations of edge AI vision SoCs for security, the company will make available reference boards to camera manufacturers soon, allowing them to develop their cameras based on the new CV5S and CV52S SoC families. “The software on these new SoCs is an evolution of our unified Linux SDK that is already available on our previous generations SoCs, which makes the transition easy for our customers,” said Jerome Gigot. Better crime detection Detecting criminals in a crowd, using face recognition and/or license plate recognition, has been a daunting challenge for security, and one the new chips will help to address. “Actually, these applications are one of the main reasons why Ambarella is introducing these two new SoC families,” said Jerome Gigot. Typically, resolutions of 4K and higher have been a smaller portion of the security market, given that they came at a premium price tag for the high-end optics, image sensor and SoC. Also, the cost and extra bandwidth of storing and streaming 4K video were not always worth it for the benefit of just viewing video at higher resolution. 4K AI processing on-camera The advent of on-camera AI at 4K changes the paradigm. By enabling 4K AI processing on-camera, smaller objects at longer distances can now be detected and analyzed without having to go to a server, and with much higher detail and accuracy compared to what can be done on a 2 MP or 5 MP cameras. This means that fewer false alarms will be generated, and each camera will now be able to cover a longer distance and wider area, offering more meaningful insights without necessarily having to stream and store that 4K video to a back-end server. “This is valuable, for example, for traffic cameras mounted on top of high poles, which need to be able to see very far out and identify cars and license plates that are hundreds of meters away,” said Jerome Gigot. The advent of on-camera AI at 4K changes the paradigm Enhanced video analytics and wider coverage “Ambarella’s new CV5S and CV52S SoCs truly allow the industry to take advantage of higher resolution on-camera for better analytics and wider coverage, but without all the costs typically incurred by having to stream high-quality 4K video out 24/7 to a remote server for offline analytics,” said Jerome Gigot. He adds, “So, next-generation cameras will now be able to identify more criminals, faces and license plates, at longer distances, for an overall lower cost and with faster response times by doing it all locally on-camera.” Deployment in retail applications Retail environments can be some of the toughest, as the cameras may be looking at hundreds of people at once Retail applications are another big selling point. Retail environments can be some of the toughest, as the cameras may be looking at hundreds of people at once (e.g., in a mall), to provide not only security features, but also other business analytics, such as foot traffic and occupancy maps that can be used later to improve product placement. The higher resolution and higher AI performance, enabled by the new Ambarella SoCs, provide a leap forward in addressing those scenarios. In a store setup, a ceiling-mounted camera with four 4K imagers can simultaneously look at the cashier line on one side of the store, sending alerts when a line is getting too long and a new cashier needs to be deployed, while at the same time looking at the entrance on the other side of the store, to count the people coming in and out. This leaves two additional 4K imagers for monitoring specific product aisles and generating real-time business analytics. Use in cashier-less stores Another retail application is a cashier-less store. Here, a CV5S or CV52S-based camera mounted on the ceiling will have enough resolution and AI performance to track goods, while the customer grabs them and puts them in their cart, as well as to automatically track which customer is purchasing which item. In a warehouse scenario, items and boxes moving across the floor could also be followed locally, on a single ceiling-mounted camera that covers a wide area of the warehouse. Additionally, these items and boxes could be tracked across the different imagers in a multi-headed camera setup, without the video having to be sent to a server to perform the tracking. Updating on-camera AI networks Another feature of Ambarella’s SoCs is that their on-camera AI networks can be updated on-the-fly, without having to stop the video recording and without losing any video frames. So, for example in the case of a search for a missing vehicle, the characteristics of that missing vehicle (make, model, color, license plate) can be sent to a cluster of cameras in the general area, where the vehicle is thought to be missing, and all those cameras can be automatically updated to run a live search on that specific vehicle. If any of the cameras gets a match, a remote operator can be notified and receive a picture, or even a live video feed of the scene. Efficient traffic management With the CV52S edge AI vision SoC, those decisions can be made locally at each intersection by the camera itself Relating to traffic congestion, most big cities have thousands of intersections that they need to monitor and manage. Trying to do this from one central location is costly and difficult, as there is so much video data to process and analyze, in order to make those traffic decisions (to control the traffic lights, reverse lanes, etc.). With the CV52S edge AI vision SoC, those decisions can be made locally at each intersection by the camera itself. The camera would then take actions autonomously (for example, adjust traffic-light timing) and only report a status update to the main traffic control center. So now, instead of having one central location trying to manage 1,000 intersections, a city can have 1,000 smart AI cameras, each managing its own location and providing updates and metadata to a central server. Superior privacy Privacy is always a concern with video. In this case, doing AI on-camera is inherently more private than streaming the video to a server for analysis. Less data transmission means fewer points of entry for a hacker trying to access the video. On Ambarella’s CV5S and CV52S SoCs, the video can be analyzed locally and then discarded, with just a signature or metadata of the face being used to find a match. No actual video needs to be stored or transmitted, which ensures total privacy. In addition, the chips contain a very secure hardware cyber security block, including OTP memory, Arm TrustZones, DRAM scrambling and I/O virtualization. This makes it very difficult for a hacker to replace the firmware on the camera, providing another level of security and privacy at the system level. Privacy Masking Another privacy feature is the concept of privacy masking. This feature enables portions of the video (say a door or a window) to be blocked out, before being encoded in the video stream. The blocked portions of the scene are not present in the recorded video, thus providing a privacy option for cameras that are facing private areas. “With on-camera AI, each device becomes its own smart endpoint, and can be reconfigured at will to serve the specific physical security needs of its installation,” said Jerome Gigot, adding “The possibilities are endless, and our mission as an SoC maker is really to provide a powerful and easy-to-use platform, complete with computer-vision tools, that enable our customers and their partners to easily deploy their own AI software on-camera.” Physical security in parking lots With a CV5S or CV52S AI-enabled camera, the camera will be able to cover a much wider portion of the parking lot One example is physical security in a parking lot. A camera today might be used to just record part of the parking lot, so that an operator can go back and look at the video if a car were broken into or some other incident occurred. With a CV5S or CV52S AI-enabled camera, first of all, the camera will be able to cover a much wider portion of the parking lot. Additionally, it will be able to detect the license plates of all the cars going in and out, to automatically bill the owners. If there is a special event, the camera can be reprogrammed to identify VIP vehicles and automatically redirect them to the VIP portion of the lot, while reporting to the entrance station or sign how many parking spots are available. It can even tell the cars approaching the lot where to go. Advantages of using edge AI vision SoCs Jerome Gigot said, “The possibilities are endless and they span across many verticals. The market is primed to embrace these new capabilities. Recent advances in edge AI vision SoCs have brought about a period of change in the physical security space. Companies that would have, historically, only provided security cameras, are now getting into adjacent verticals such as smart retail, smart cities and smart buildings.” He adds, “These changes are providing a great opportunity for all the camera makers and software providers to really differentiate themselves by providing full systems that offer a new level of insights and efficiencies to, not only the physical security manager, but now also the store owner and the building manager.” He adds, “All of these new applications are extremely healthy for the industry, as they are growing the available market for cameras, while also increasing their value and the economies of scale they can provide. Ambarella is looking forward to seeing all the innovative products that our customers will build with this new generation of SoCs.”
Imagine a world where video cameras are not just watching and reporting for security, but have an even wider positive impact on our lives. Imagine that cameras control street and building lights, as people come and go, that traffic jams are predicted and vehicles are automatically rerouted, and more tills are opened, just before a queue starts to form. Cameras with AI capabilities Cameras in stores can show us how we might look in the latest outfit as we browse. That’s the vision from Panasonic about current and future uses for their cameras that provide artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities at the edge. Panasonic feels that these types of intelligent camera applications are also the basis for automation and introduction of Industry 4.0, in which processes are automated, monitored and controlled by AI-driven systems. 4K network security cameras The company’s i-PRO AI-capable camera line can install and run up to three AI-driven video analytic applications Panasonic’s 4K network security cameras have built-in AI capabilities suitable for this next generation of intelligent applications in business and society. The company’s i-PRO AI-capable camera line can install and run up to three AI-driven video analytic applications. The AI engine is directly embedded into the camera, thus reducing costs and Panasonic’s image quality ensures the accuracy of the analytics outcome. FacePRO facial recognition technology Panasonic began advancing AI technology on the server side with FacePRO, the in-house facial recognition application, which uses AI deep learning capabilities. Moving ahead, they transitioned their knowledge of AI from the server side to the edge, introducing i-PRO security cameras with built-in AI capabilities last summer, alongside their own in-house analytics. Moreover, in line with the Panasonic approach to focus more on collaboration with specialist AI software developers, a partnership with Italian software company, A.I. Tech followed in September, with a range of intelligent applications, partially based on deep learning. Additional collaborations are already in place with more than 10 other developers, across the European Union, working on more future applications. i-PRO AI-capable security cameras Open systems are an important part of Panasonic’s current approach. The company’s i-PRO AI-capable cameras are an open platform and designed for third-party application development, therefore, applications can be built or tailored to the needs of an individual customer. Panasonic use to be a company that developed everything in-house, including all the analytics and applications. “However, now we have turned around our strategy by making our i-PRO security cameras open to integrate applications and analytics from third-party companies,” says Gerard Figols, Head of Security Solutions at Panasonic Business Europe. Flexible and adapting to specific customer needs This new approach allows the company to be more flexible and adaptable to customers’ needs. “At the same time, we can be quicker and much more tailored to the market trend,” said Gerard Figols. He adds, “For example, in the retail space, enabling retailers to enhance the customer experience, in smart cities for traffic monitoring and smart parking, and by event organizers and transport hubs to monitor and ensure safety.” Edge-based analytics offer multiple benefits over server-based systems Edge-based analytics Edge-based analytics offer multiple benefits over server-based systems. On one hand, there are monetary benefits - a cost reduction results from the decreased amount of more powerful hardware required on the server side to process the data, on top of reduction in the infrastructure costs, as not all the full video stream needs to be sent for analysis, we can work solely with the metadata. On the other hand, there are also advantages of flexibility, as well as reliability. Each camera can have its own individual analytic setup and in case of any issue on the communication or server side, the camera can keep running the analysis at the edge, thereby making sure the CCTV system is still fully operational. Most importantly, systems can keep the same high level of accuracy. Explosion of AI camera applications We can compare the explosion of AI camera applications to the way we experienced it for smartphone applications" “We can compare the explosion of AI camera applications to the way we experienced it for smartphone applications,” said Gerard Figols, adding “However, it doesn’t mean the hardware is not important anymore, as I believe it’s more important than ever. Working with poor picture quality or if the hardware is not reliable, and works 24/7, software cannot run or deliver the outcome it has been designed for.” As hardware specialists, Figols believes that Panasonic seeks to focus on what they do best - Building long-lasting, open network cameras, which are capable of capturing the highest quality images that are required for the latest AI applications, while software developers can concentrate on bringing specialist applications to the market. Same as for smartphones, AI applications will proliferate based on market demand and succeed or fail, based on the value that they deliver. Facial recognition, privacy protection and cross line technologies Panasonic has been in the forefront in developing essential AI applications for CCTV, such as facial recognition, privacy protection and cross line. However, with the market developing so rapidly and the potential applications of AI-driven camera systems being so varied and widespread, Panasonic quickly realized that the future of their network cameras was going to be in open systems, which allow specialist developers and their customers to use their sector expertise to develop their own applications for specific vertical market applications, while using i-PRO hardware. Metadata for detection and recognition Regarding privacy, consider that the use of AI in cameras is about generating metadata for the detection and recognition of patterns, rather than identifying individual identities. “However, there are legitimate privacy concerns, but I firmly believe that attitudes will change quickly when people see the incredible benefits that this technology can deliver,” said Gerard Figols, adding “I hope that we will be able to redefine our view of cameras and AI, not just as insurance, but as life advancing and enhancing.” i-PRO AI Privacy Guard One of the AI applications that Panasonic developed was i-PRO AI Privacy Guard Seeking to understand and appreciate privacy concerns, one of the AI applications that Panasonic developed was i-PRO AI Privacy Guard that generates data without capturing individual identities, following European privacy regulations that are among the strictest in the world. Gerard Fogils said, “The combination of artificial intelligence and the latest generation open camera technology will change the world’s perceptions from Big Brother to Big Benefits. New applications will emerge as the existing generation of cameras is updated to the new open and intelligent next generation devices, and the existing role of the security camera will also continue.” Future scope of AI and cameras He adds, “Not just relying on the security cameras for evidence when things have gone wrong, end users will increasingly be able to use AI and the cameras with much higher accuracy to prevent false alarms and in a proactive way to prevent incidents." Gerard Figols concludes, “That could be monitoring and alerting when health and safety guidelines are being breached or spotting and flagging patterns of suspicious behavior before incidents occur.”
When 150,000 video surveillance cameras get hacked, it’s big news. Even if the main reason for the hack was to make a point. Even if the major consequence is bad publicity for a video company (and, by extension, the entire video surveillance industry). The target of the hack was Silicon Valley startup Verkada, which has collected a massive trove of security-camera data from its 150,000 surveillance cameras inside hospitals, companies, police departments, prisons and schools. Previously, Verkada has been known for an aggressive sales approach and its intent to disrupt the traditional video market. The data breach was accomplished by an international hacker collective and was first reported by Bloomberg. The reported reasons for the hack were “lots of curiosity, fighting for freedom of information and against intellectual property, a huge dose of anti-capitalism, a hint of anarchism – and it’s also just too much fun not to do it,” according to Bloomberg. Tesla amongst those impacted The “fun” included access to a video showing the inside of a Florida hospital, where eight hospital staffers tackled a man and pinned him to the bed. Inside a Massachusetts police station, officers are seen questioning a man in handcuffsA view inside a Tesla warehouse in Shanghai, China, showed workers on an assembly line. Inside a Massachusetts police station, officers are seen questioning a man in handcuffs. There are even views from Verkada security cameras inside Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, where a gunman killed more than 20 people in 2012. In a “security update” statement, Verkada reports: “Our internal security experts are actively investigating the matter. Out of an abundance of caution, we have implemented additional security measures to restrict account access and further protect our customers.” Hacking was possible due to built-in feature The hacker group was able to obtain “root” access on the cameras, meaning they could use the cameras to execute their own code, reports Bloomberg. Obtaining this degree of access to the camera did not require any additional hackingUsing that access, they could pivot and obtain access to the broader corporate network of Verkada’s customers or hijack the cameras and use them as a platform to launch future hacks, the hackers told Bloomberg. Obtaining this degree of access to the camera did not require any additional hacking, as it was a built-in feature. Elisa Costante, VP of research for cybersecurity firm Forescout, calls the Verkada security camera hack "shocking." "Connected cameras are supposed to provide an additional layer of security to organizations that install them,” she says. “Yet, as the Verkada security camera breach has shown, the exact opposite is often true. [It is worrisome that] the attack wasn't even very sophisticated and didn't involve exploiting a known or unknown vulnerability. The bad actors simply used valid credentials to access the data stored on a cloud server.” Super Admin account had access to all cameras Hackers gained access to Verkada through a “Super Admin” account, allowing them to peer into the cameras of all of its customers. They found a username and password for an administrator account publicly exposed on the internet, according to Bloomberg. The hackers lost access to the video feeds and archives after Bloomberg contacted Verkada.Hackers lost access to the video feeds and archives after Bloomberg contacted Verkada The results could have been worse, says Costante. "In this case, the bad actors have seemingly only resorted to viewing the footage these cameras have captured. But they are likely able to cause a lot more damage if they choose to do so, as our own research team has discovered. We were able to intercept, record and replace real-time footage from smart cameras by exploiting unencrypted video streaming protocols and performing a man-in-the-middle attack. This effectively gives criminals a virtual invisibility cloak to physically access premises and wreak havoc in the real world.” Impact on broader video surveillance industry The impact of a well-publicised cyber-attack on the broader video surveillance industry is also a concern. “As an industry, and as manufacturers in physical security, we cannot take these hacks lightly,” says Christian Morin, CSO & Vice-President of Integrations & Cloud Services, Genetec. “The potential broad-reaching impact of these hacks on physical security systems, including providing a beachhead to facilitate lateral movement onto networks, resulting in data and privacy breaches or access to critical assets and infrastructure, cannot be overstated. It is our responsibility and duty to users of our technology to prioritise data privacy and cybersecurity in the development, distribution, and deployment of video surveillance systems.” Widespread government and healthcare use The Verkada cameras are in widespread use within government and healthcare, which are by far the company’s most dominant verticals. Lesser verticals for them are manufacturing, financial and retail.The Verkada website pledges to take privacy seriously Verkada’s line of hybrid cloud security cameras combines edge-based processing with the capabilities of cloud computing. Cameras analyse events in real-time, while simultaneously leveraging computer vision technology for insights that bring speed and efficiency to incidents and investigations. Command, Verakda’s centralised web-based platform, provides users with access to footage they need. Motion detection, people analytics, and vehicle analytics enable searches across an organization to find relevant footage. The Verkada website pledges to take privacy seriously: “We are passionate about developing products that enhance the security and privacy of organizations and individuals. We believe that well-built, user-friendly systems make it easier to manage and secure physical environments in ways that respect the privacy of individuals while simultaneously keeping them safe.”
The UK Government is consulting on plans to introduce a new law requiring operators of public spaces to consider the risk of a terrorist attack and take proportionate and reasonable measures to prepare for and protect the public from such an attack. Under the proposals outlined in the consultation document, those responsible for a publicly accessible location will have a ‘protect duty.’ The protect duty would apply to certain publicly accessible locations, widely defined as ‘any place to which the public or any section of the public has access, on payment or otherwise, as of right or by virtue of express or implied permission.’ Publicly accessible locations Publicly accessible locations include a wide variety of everyday locations such as: Sports stadiums, festivals and music venues, hotels, public houses, clubs, bars, casinos, high streets, retail stores, shopping centers, markets, schools, universities, medical centers, hospitals, places of worship, government offices, job centers, transport hubs, parks, beaches, public squares, other open spaces. This list is by no means exhaustive, but it does demonstrate the diverse nature of publicly accessible locations. To manage these challenges, some organizations are relying on guarding and manual solutions or processes Organizations responsible for publicly accessible locations have many challenges they need to overcome while at the same time ensuring that safety and security is visible, yet non-intrusive. To manage these challenges, some organizations are relying on guarding and manual solutions or processes, whereas other organizations have invested heavily in diverse security technologies: CCTV, access control, intruder alarms, fire detection, intercoms and more. Managing public safety Effectively managing public safety and security is difficult and can be costly. Potential liabilities are something to seriously consider, based on forthcoming regulation and prevailing public expectations. When a critical event unfolds public reactions can be difficult to safely manage, however this is now a must do. Public space operators need to get the right information to the right people at the right time to protect all people, including every single member of the public. Their work with public and private sector clients around the world has enabled them to understand ‘protecting the public’ challenges and offer solutions that meet the specific requirements. Public space operators and organizations must keep track of all emerging threats and assess the potential impacts of when, not if, they will experience a critical event. Unpredictable threat environment Security executives have the challenge of protecting people, facilities and assets With an increasingly complex and unpredictable threat environment, it has never been more imperative to act faster. With more complete intelligence, organizations can increase their speed and decisiveness to assess risks and prevent those risks from harming people or disrupting operations. Leisure and entertainment is a prominent UK industry, that is also one of the most vulnerable to safety and security threats. Security executives have the challenge of protecting people, facilities and assets, while also maintaining friendly and welcoming services to visitors. Public venues and retailers must provide non-intrusive client safety and security. For the would-be criminal, safety and security provision should be a visible deterrent. Balancing these needs is where Everbridge can help organizations. Everbridge provides the critical event management platform to help organizations manage the full lifecycle of a crisis. Facilitating device activation Their platform correlates events from disparate safety and security systems into a common operating picture to focus people’s attention on what really matters. The platform provides users with actionable alerts, next step actions, and automated reporting to better manage risks, ensure compliance with operating procedures and support the business continuity. Automated workflows ensure rapid, consistent responses, reducing the risk of human error Automated workflows ensure rapid, consistent responses, reducing the risk of human error. It also facilitates device activation to ensure they are always in operational control and protecting the people. Dynamic reports and dashboards provide real-time actionable insights for the operations teams and senior executives. Benefits include: Real-time situational awareness. Reduces risk. Accelerates response times. Avoids technology lock-ins. Prevents information overload. Keeps stakeholders informed. With Everbridge, the organization can deliver the public protect duty. Now and in the future.
The volume of data necessary to solve crimes continues to rise across the United Kingdom and sharing information quickly is instrumental in solving cases. With this in mind, NICE has announced that it’s NICE Investigate digital evidence management solution is now helping connect businesses and police forces. NICE Investigate system NICE Investigate system enables enterprises and police forces to work collaboratively on investigations, in order to speed the delivery of justice, by ensuring fast, seamless sharing of CCTV video and other digital evidence. Two major UK retailers have already embraced the initiative, by registering their thousands of CCTV cameras with the NICE Investigate system. The initiative is being driven in part by the National Business Crime Centre, a UK resource created out of Home Office Police Transformation Funding, to improve the partnership between the business community and police. Boots UK, the largest pharmacy health, safety and beauty chain in the United Kingdom, with 2,336 stores nationwide, is among the first retailers to join, along with a large UK supermarket chain. Sharing video with UK police forces When businesses register with NICE Investigate, they’re able to easily share videos with UK police forces When businesses register with NICE Investigate, they’re able to easily share videos with participating UK police forces. Currently, 15 UK police forces and organizations, including Hampshire Constabulary, are actively using the NICE solution to manage digital evidence and conduct investigations. Iona Blake, the Security and Incident Manager at Boots UK explained, “We have a large number of stores, with both internal and external CCTV cameras, for investigating all types of crimes and incidents.” She adds, “The addition of the NICE Investigate technology allows Boots to engage in the right level of data sharing, with local police forces. For us, it’s all about how can we get better at reporting crimes. In addition to improving efficiency and saving time, this program has really changed the dynamic of our relationship with the police. Boots may be the first to use the NICE platform, but I’m sure, we will not be the last, as more retailers and police forces come on stream.” Swift video evidence collection Patrick Holdaway, Superintendent at City of London Police and Lead for the National Business Crime Centre said, “NICE Investigate provides a great opportunity for police forces and businesses to work together, to ensure the swift collection of evidence, allowing the police to bring offenders to justice, as effectively as possible.” Chris Wooten, the Executive Vice President, NICE, stated “The need for businesses and police forces to work together is greater than ever. The volume of crime is rising and getting digital evidence into the hands of police investigators can be a time consuming, drawn out, manual process, requiring officers to travel to the business location, to copy and collect the evidence. With lean budgets and forces short-staffed, time is limited. NICE Investigate helps businesses and police forces break through this log jam, by removing the time-consuming manual processes.” One-stop, cloud-based solution NICE Investigate stores the contact details for each participating business, along with the geo-location of each CCTV camera NICE Investigate is a one-stop, cloud-based solution for transforming manual processes around the collection, management, analysis and sharing of all types of digital evidence. With NICE Investigate, the entire process of requesting and sending CCTV video is done electronically. Participating businesses register their cameras in NICE Investigate and can share CCTV video evidence securely and electronically. NICE Investigate stores the contact details for each participating business, along with the geo-location of each CCTV camera. When a crime occurs, investigators can view camera locations on a map and instantly send out an electronic request for the relevant CCTV footage. Video evidence files are cyber secure Upon receiving the request, the business uploads the video file(s) into NICE Investigate’s secure portal. As they are uploaded, video files are virus-checked, automatically converted to a playable format and deposited into an electronic case file, where they are available to the investigator for viewing. NICE Investigate is currently being by used more than 50,000 investigators and police officers around the world.
IDIS end-to-end video is protecting a new, purpose-built visitor center at Canterbury Cathedral, part of a $34 million renovation project transforming one of the UK’s most important UNESCO Heritage sites. The seven-year program, preserving and safeguarding the fifteen-centuries-old masterpiece of English Gothic architecture – and mother church of the worldwide Anglican communion - includes the addition of a new, purpose-built welcome center for visitors. The center, housing retail facilities, a viewing gallery, and community studio exhibition space, is protected with a best-in-class video solution which combines discrete monitoring with high-performance image capture. Real time monitoring Specialist systems integrator Hall & Kay Security Engineering was tasked with delivering a solution that would be affordable, easy-to-use, and allow for comprehensive real time monitoring, while ensuring reliable recording without data loss. And because this was part of a much wider project, the video technology also had to be fast and easy to install – essential for avoiding project overruns in this complex, multidisciplinary construction environment, and preventing any delays to the new welcome center’s opening. This IDIS Korean-made tech also gives Canterbury assurance of trusted manufacturing origin Based on previous experience, Hall & Kay had no hesitation recommending IDIS end-to-end tech, incorporating cameras, recorders VMS, and essential peripherals. This IDIS Korean-made tech also gives Canterbury assurance of trusted manufacturing origin and high-level cybersecurity protection, with its inherent, multi-layered encryptions and proprietary protocols to safeguard sensitive video data. Variable lighting conditions To give high-definition video coverage of the Welcome Center’s entrances, retail area and exhibition spaces, Hall & Kay installed IDIS Full HD DC-4223WRX IR dome cameras. These vandal-resistant models come equipped with varifocal lenses, true WDR and IR LED to deliver crisp, clear images even in challenging and variable lighting conditions. They connect to three 16-channel DD-1216 NVRs to handle recording and deliver 480ips live view with no visible latency. Easy plug-and-play allowed for seamless and rapid connectivity and mutual two-factor authentication of devices streamlined cybersecurity measures, the cornerstone of IDIS DirectIP® solutions. Specific user permissions The IDIS cameras, NVRs and VMS discretely blend with the center’s architecture The license-free IDIS Center VMS gives the cathedral Constable and his security team complete visual awareness and easy control tools for efficient management, plus the ability to configure specific user permissions to give senior staff and system administrators timely access to video footage. The IDIS cameras, NVRs and VMS discretely blend with the center’s architecture without detracting from the visitor experience, while providing effective real-time monitoring. “The solution is now protecting property, enhancing safety for visitors and staff, and providing a complete record of events at one of the UK’s busiest and most important heritage sites,” says David Stokes, Divisional Director, Hall & Kay Security Engineering. Compelling business case “The IDIS end-to-end solution allowed us to present this important customer with a compelling business case, with no up-front or ongoing licensing fees, extended warranties and a low total cost of ownership. The solution is also highly flexible and scalable, thanks to long-term hardware support and forward- and backward-compatibility, which future-proofs the cathedra’s investment.” “The choice of IDIS video for this most sensitive of sites is testament to the reliability, quality and cybersecurity of our Korean-made tech,” adds Jamie Barnfield, Senior Sales Director, IDIS Europe. “This is just one of many projects we are working on with Hall & Kay in-line with the IDIS philosophy of building sustainable strategic partnerships with integrators and end user customers.”
To increase footfall in its Dubai Festival City Mall showroom, and to create a winning in-store customer experience, leading Middle East retailer Jashanmal has deployed a unique LED and LCD solution from Hikvision. Attracting customers in competitive retail environments Customers visiting large malls and retail parks can access a world of products in a single location. But while malls attract large crowds, stores need to create unique offers and experiences for customers to maximize footfall and to win a larger share of their overall spend. In this highly competitive environment, innovative commercial display technologies such as LED displays can help stores stand out and gain a significant competitive edge. As well as attracting more customers into the store, commercial displays and interactive screens can be used to provide information about specific brands and products or to order goods that are not available in the store. To achieve these benefits, leading homewares and lifestyle retailer Jashanmal is using the commercial display and LED technologies extensively in its stores. Using LED’s to create a wow factor We understand the benefits of LED's and interactive screens to create a ‘wow-factor' in our showrooms " The retailer exclusively distributes and retails some of the best brands in GCC (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman), and offers a wide selection of products ranging from cookware, tableware, home appliances, travel products, gifts and many more sees these kinds of technologies as a major opportunity to attract more customers and to deliver winning in-store experiences. Dinesh Dhingra, Chief Group Support & Services Officer, Jashanmal says, “We fully understand the benefits of LED displays and interactive screens in terms of creating a ‘wow-factor in our showrooms. That’s why we decided to create and deploy a captivating commercial display solution at our showroom in Dubai’s Festival City Mall.” ‘Artistic’ LED display with interactive in-store screens Jashanmal worked with consultants from commercial display leader Hikvision to design the solution, which incorporates two unique ‘arch-shaped' LED displays at the showroom entrance. Each of these LED panels is one meter wide, and 15 meters long, reaching up from the floor, over the ‘arched’ entrance to the store. The panels continually show ‘artistic’ content that is perfectly aligned to the Jashanmal brand, creating a welcoming atmosphere for customers and encouraging them to come into the showroom and explore. Interactive LCD screens Customers can use these screens to browse product specifications and color options In addition to these huge, arched LED displays at the store entrance, the solution includes three 86-inch interactive LCD screens located at the cash register, the ‘homewares’ area of the store, and in the ‘luggage’ area. Customers can use these screens to browse product specifications and color options. If a product is not available in-store, customers can also use the screens to order them online. To complete the solution, three additional screens broadcast details of products, brands, and offers to customers in-store, helping to inform and inspire them on their buying journey. The digital signage content that is shown on these screens is also replicated on the LCD interactive screens when customers are not using them to browse or buy products online. All of the benefits with the lowest possible cost Although Hikvision consultants helped to design the solution, Jashanmal put out an open tender for the solution rollout. After a competitive bid process, Systems Integrator Magnus Technologies was chosen to deliver the solution, with foundational LED and LCD technologies provided by Hikvision. “Retail is an extremely price-sensitive industry, and we need excellent value across our entire supplier ecosystem,” says Dinesh Dhingra. “With Hikvision, we didn’t just get great technical and design advice. We also met our requirements in terms of cost-effectiveness and best value, which is a critical requirement across all our in-store innovation projects.” Close collaboration for a seamless deployment An artistic LED display attracts more customers into the Jashanmal showroom, boosting footfall in the store " Hikvision and partners collaborated extremely closely on the project with Jashanmal to ensure fast, seamless delivery. Sachin Srinivasan, Hikvision Project Manager, says, “The unique contour of the showroom’s arches meant that we had to work closely with the store and our other delivery partners at every stage of the manufacturing and deployment process. The result was a stunning artistic LED display that attracts more customers into the Jashanmal showroom, boosting footfall in the store and, as a result, conversion as well.” Increased competitive advantage for Jashanmal in Dubai Partnering with all the top brands in the Middle East, Jashanmal already has a winning retail proposition that keeps customers coming back for more. However, by collaborating with Hikvision and Magnus Technologies, the store has also achieved the brand expression it was aiming for to attract more customers than ever into its showroom at Dubai Festival City Mall. “The new commercial display solution delivered by Hikvision has been attracting a lot of attention,” says Dinesh Dhingra. “Our leading products and brands are now backed up by an equally compelling, exciting in-store experience for our highly discerning customers.”
Customers shopping in Scotch & Soda clothing will have soon a much stronger chance of finding and purchasing the right trousers, skirt, jacket, or shirt, thanks to the retailer’s new three-year partnership with renowned RFID solutions provider, Checkpoint Systems. RFID labels for inventory accuracy Checkpoint Systems will tag, on average, 10 million Scotch & Soda garments with the latest generation of RFID labels per year, providing it with improved inventory accuracy across its estate. By utilizing this technology, the retailer will gain full, real-time visibility of its entire stock holding, ensuring its omni-channel services, including ‘click & collect’, are optimized. Scotch & Soda has been using Checkpoint Systems’ clothing labels for more than 10 years Scotch & Soda, which operates 166 stores in more than 70 countries, has been using Checkpoint Systems’ clothing labels for more than 10 years. Now, the fashion brand is going a step further in its collaboration, by incorporating the latest generation of RFID labels, featuring the high performing Njord label with the Impinj M750 Chip, onto all its merchandise worldwide. Scotch & Soda and Checkpoint Systems partnership Scotch & Soda has expanded the relationship with Checkpoint Systems, as they are a trusted partner that could deliver this project, within just 8 weeks’ time. With the implementation of this new technology, Scotch & Soda will be able to match its stock to the demands of its consumers. This means that the retailer will be able to have the right stock, at the right place, at the right time, in order to serve its customers, regardless of the channel they chose to shop. To be able to optimize stock holding to this level results in omni-channel retailing becoming seamlessly coordinated, enabling stores to optimize services, such as click & collect. Checkpoint RFID labels Rik Kok, the Global Director of Procurement and Real Estate for Scotch & Soda, said “Thanks to Checkpoint Systems' latest RFID labels, we know exactly how many medium blue trousers are still in our distribution centers in Belgium, the Netherlands or Germany, for example, or how many extra jackets our shops in Japan need from our summer collection.” Rik adds, “In this way, we are not left with a large surplus of unsold items, at the end of a season and we can provide every consumer with the garment he or she wants, through his or her most preferred sales channel.” Getting the right garments online and in shops faster Thanks to Checkpoint Systems’ RFID labels, shop staff can now replenish stock quickly Imagine shopping and wanting a garment, but are told that the size or color is no longer available. Scotch & Soda believe this should never happen and thanks to Checkpoint Systems’ RFID labels, shop staff can now replenish stock quickly and coordinate it with the entire supply chain, right from manufacturer to distribution center, to shops and pick-up points. Rik Kok said “Thanks to RFID technology, we know how many garments we have of what size and color, and where they are in our chain. This means, we can immediately help the consumer find the right garment. This also applies to when they buy clothes from us online. We refer the customer to the nearest click & collect, or buy & pick up point, where the desired garment is located, or they pick it up in our shop that is on their daily route.” Change in customer buying trends Geert den Hartog, the Key Account Director - Apparel at Checkpoint Systems, said “2020 has changed the buying behavior of consumers worldwide. Shoppers no longer just buy clothes in a physical shop or online. They buy through their preferred channel, as and when it is convenient for them. If retailers want to grow, they will have to accommodate their consumers with this omni-channel behavior.” He adds, “RFID ensures that shops can perfectly align e-commerce, click & collect and other online services. This improves customer loyalty by ensuring that the experience in enjoyable, from mobile/desktop browsing through to collection or delivery.”
Hanwha Techwin a supplier of IP and analog video surveillance solutions, announces that Round1 Entertainment, a multi-entertainment facility offering bowling, arcade games, billiards, karaoke, and other activities in an indoor facility complex has chosen Hanwha cameras, NVRs and WAVE VMS to secure several of its US-based facilities. Until recently, security at Round1 centers in the US focused mainly on internal and external theft. As the company began building more sports challenge zones, however, it started seeing an increase in litigation from visitors making claims about injuries. Physical security system To protect the company against false claims, Round1 decided to increase data retention requirements at their facilities to store footage for two years to allow staff to go back and review incidents to determine the validity of any claim made against the company. Round1 implemented a remote storage solution featuring a 124 TB NVR from Hanwha Techwin To help design a physical security system that would meet the new retention requirements, Round1 implemented a remote storage solution featuring a 124 TB NVR from Hanwha Techwin that performs continuous back-ups to ensure that the data is secure. This NVR is then supported by an outside server. The total storage for the facility is 528TB, which enables them to comply with the two-year retention requirement. Dual-Headed cameras Protecting against liability requires capturing and storing wide-angle, high-resolution video. To achieve this, a total of 77 cameras were deployed from Hanwha Techwin, including the XNV-6011 with a fisheye lens and the PNM-7000VD. With these cameras placed throughout the center, the security system is able to capture 360° views of key areas. One of the challenges in using fisheye lenses and dual-headed cameras is the size of the video files. These cameras are capturing high-resolution 360° images that are data-heavy and require a lot of bandwidth. Finding the right VMS to compress video and manage bandwidth is crucial. This is particularly true if you are interested in implementing long-term storage. Optimizing motion capture Hanwha’s Wisenet WAVE VMS is helping Round1 at Cumberland Mall in Atlanta, Georgia manage bandwidth Hanwha’s Wisenet WAVE VMS is helping Round1 at Cumberland Mall in Atlanta, Georgia manage bandwidth. In addition to using H-265 and WiseStream II compression technology to reduce file size, they’re also using motion detection to help reduce the amount of video they capture. “Wisenet WAVE offers Round1 everything we need to meet our retention goals. And, from an operations perspective, the day-to-day usage of the cameras is just so far superior to anything else on the market,” said Matthew Strawn, Director of Loss Prevention at Round1. They have also set the sensitivity of their video cameras to optimize motion capture so that flashing lights and other background elements don’t trigger the sensors. Pertinent video footage The facility at Cumberland was completed in 2020, and their security system is already yielding results. The center had an alleged injury on the skating rink that was reported long after the date it was said to have occurred. Using WAVE, Strawn was able to retrieve the pertinent video footage from the remote storage and then isolate the relevant images. To date, Round1 has migrated seven locations to WAVE. Strawn is pleased with the outcome, saying “We have had zero issues and the coverage has been great. We haven’t had to make any adjustments and the system completely satisfies our retention needs.” And he’s not alone in his appreciation of the new system. The project at the Cumberland Mall and the migration of seven other centers to WAVE have been so successful that Round1 hopes to upgrade more in the future.
Round table discussion
We are several weeks into 2021, and it is already shaping up to be an eventful year. The happenings and trends from 2020 will likely carry over into the new year, but in a fast-moving industry such as ours, there will also be additional trends to watch. Looking toward the year ahead, we asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What will be the biggest security trends in 2021?
What a year 2020 was for the security industry! There were vast challenges that could not have been foreseen at the beginning of the year. It is safe to say that the events of 2020 defied all industry prognosticators. However, is that any reason not to hope our expectations looking ahead to 2021 will be much closer to reality? Can we possibly benefit from looking ahead and trying to plan for the challenges of the year ahead? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What will be the security industry’s biggest challenge in 2021?
Ten years is a long time, but it seems to pass in an instant in the world of security. In terms of technology, 2010 is ages ago. Changes in the market have been transformative during that decade, and we called on our Expert Panel Roundtable to highlight some of those changes. We asked this week’s panelists: What was the biggest change in the security industry in the 2010-2019 decade?
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