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Year in Review: Security Surges in 2011 from Delayed Projects

Year in Review: Security Surges in 2011 from Delayed Projects

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 11/30/2011 | Article type: Hot Topics

The economic crisis seems to be largely over in 2011, but new debt concerns are sparking anxiety about a second depression. As security deals with market uncertainty, we look at the year's milestones in events, regional and vertical markets, technologies, challenges, and drivers and differentiators.

There has been no shortage of grim headlines this year. In March, the strongest recorded earthquake in Japan killed scores of people, leaving extensive destruction and a nuclear meltdown in its wake. Along with natural disaster, deliberate acts of violence took place, including the senseless Norway attacks and the Moscow airport suicide bombing. In the U.K., mass riots resulted in five deaths and widespread damage.

The past decade in security has been shaped by 9/11, with its mastermind Osama bin Laden meeting his demise in May. However, the war on terrorism is far from over, affecting a younger generation throughout the region. Across the Middle East and North Africa, Arab Spring uprisings toppled authoritarian regimes. Egypt's Prime Minister Hosni Mubarak stepped down after 30 years of power, while Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi was killed in October. Political instability coupled with economic uncertainty has marked the past year as an eventful one.

Not all is bleak though. China hosted the successful 2011 Summer World University Games in Shenzhen, welcoming student athletes from all over the world. Projects came back online, with Asia Pacific expected to invest US$100 billion for 350 airports in the next 10 years, according to Frost & Sullivan. More new infrastructure boosted the security market, which grew in some areas due to political unrest.

Notable consolidation and restructuring activity went on in 2011, a welcome sign after the recession. Tyco International announced a three-way split in September, with security divided into two companies: ADT and Commercial Fire and Security. “One of the business reasons for splitting up Tyco was serving the customer better,” said Charlie LeBlanc, President of Security Services for FrontierMEDEX. “One of the dangers in consolidation is you start losing the customer and understanding what they want or need.”

Prior to Tyco's split, ADT Security Services acquired physical security information management (PSIM) provider Proximex in April. In the same month, Verint Systems also made a PSIM buy for Rontal Engineering Applications. As security systems handle more data, there is a clear need to aggregate it in management platforms.

UTC reorganized in September, combining security and fire with HVAC provider Carrier to become UTC Climate, Controls and Security Systems. The new business will be led by new President and CEO Geraud Darnis. Siemens also restructured in September, with a new Fire Safety and Security business unit made up of Life Cycle and Enterprise segments.

Pure-play video analytics providers were either acquired or eliminated this year. Vidient was in both categories, going under in January and then being acquired by Agilence in April. In August, Keeneo's 4-D analytics was sold to Digital Barriers for $2.8 million, diminishing the ranks of stand-alone analytics providers.

Of the VCA companies still in operation, ObjectVideo sued Bosch Security Systems, Sony and Samsung Techwin for patent infringement this year. While the defendants have countersued and the legal outcome is uncertain, the lawsuits make ObjectVideo look desperate. Even if ObjectVideo wins, it has lost credibility by alienating some of the biggest names in video surveillance.

Public spending came back in 2011, with government projects and airports being among the most active vertical markets. “Due to the large number of airports across the U.S. and Europe, there is a constant need for retrofit as terminals get updated,” said Blake Kozak, Senior Market Analyst for IMS Research.

DVTel won a project for a major European airport with 1,200 cameras, along with a contract for the Mumbai airport this year. “We see new opportunities largely in emerging markets,” said Ami Amir, Executive VP of Marketing and Products, DVTel. “We had significant success in South Africa, Latin America, Russia and Asia. For us, India has much more activity than China.”

A military site in Afghanistan was one of Delta Scientific's biggest projects in 2011, using barriers and barricades to protect it from car and truck bombers, said David Dickinson, Senior VP of Delta Scientific. Its key regions were North America and the Middle East, with a focus on areas facing high risks from vehicular bombs. Many investments have been made in city surveillance, infrastructure and government buildings. “Government spending in Asia Pacific has been one of the key drivers for security revenues in 2011,” said Susan Sahayan, Research Analyst for Frost & Sullivan. “Railways, airports, highways and in-flight security are some of the key sectors within transportation driving the growth of video surveillance, access control and biometrics.”

Rising fuel prices are increasing demand for public transportation. “As we see an almost negative situation in the economy, we see a positive situation in public transport,” said David Gorshkov, CEO of Digital Grape. “There's an increased need for monitoring, to meet the demands of public transport for both road and rail.”

Threats from domestic and international terrorists around the world remain, making transportation a major security market. “In the public sector globally, we see the increase of security systems, whether they be access control or video surveillance,” Gorshkov said. “Government buildings are increasing their security, as well as educational installations.”

The Beijing metro chose a networked access control solution with card readers to enhance access management and overall security, said Simon Siew, MD for APAC, HID Global (an Assa Abloy company).

Infrastructure and government were among the company's top verticals for 2011. “Geographically, we have grown in India and China in the past year, as their economic environments have rebounded faster than most countries,” Siew said.

Corrections saw growth this year, with OnSSI installing systems at several Texas prisons. Each system includes more than 800 cameras. “OnSSI will be standardized throughout the Texas prison system's 114 facilities in the coming years, with new installations taking place as funding becomes available,” said Gadi Piran, President of OnSSI.

City surveillance also sees greater demand for scalable management. “There is increasing interest in separate control rooms to make better use of data citywide, such as transmission,” Gorshkov said. “There's interest in the consolidation of systems in various control centers, or PSIM.” [NextPage]

The commercial sector saw good movement in the past year. “The global economy trickles down to all spending, whether the government or private sector,” LeBlanc said. “The private sector is driving the spending more so than the government sector.”

Sports and leisure grew, such as athletic venues and stadiums. Dallmeier installed a multimegapixel solution for the Olympic Stadium in Berlin, which can seat more than 74,000 spectators, according to a prepared statement from the company.

In emerging countries such as Brazil, India and China, high growth can be found. “With the World Cup and Olympics to be held in Brazil in the coming years, the country is set to increase its capacity by about 85 percent,” Kozak said. “The number of hotel rooms is also expected to increase by nearly 40 percent, increasing demand for products such as electromagnetic locks. Qatar is also seeing strong growth in sports and leisure as well as other vertical markets, because of the need to secure both established and newly constructed infrastructure.”

Financial institutions witnessed increased demand. “Banking experienced moderate growth in 2011 despite the downturn, because of consolidation and the need for logical- physical access control,” Kozak said.

Retailers are also investing in security. “Retail, certainly supermarkets, are performing quite well, with refurbishment programs for main stores and new developments with new smaller ‘in-town' stores,” said Andrew Pigram, Technical Director at Norbain. “One of the first sectors to react to the downturn was retail in 2008, but we're starting to see a gentle recovery.”

Europe and North America are seeing retail growth. “As it turns out, it has been strong as retailers have an increased need to protect their assets,” said Paul Bodell, Business Development for IQinVision. “In some places, the bad economy or threat of a higher crime rate has accelerated investment.”

Another growth market is the industrial sector, such as energy and petrol. “We've done work in Brazil, Mexico, Chile, Columbia and several other countries,” said John Moss, CEO of S2 Security. “The nice thing about servicing a number of markets in Latin America and Asia is you have some protection from difficulties in any single market.”

Integrators focused on ROI for installations, which grew in 2011. “We saw a spike in 2010 and 2011 in power and utilities, particularly remote sites,” said Mark Gally, VP of Marketing for VideoIQ.

As more markets have already reached the IP tipping point, standards become crucial to integrating multiple devices. ONVIF is by far the largest of the physical security groups, counting more than 300 members. However, the present version is limited to display. Support for each member's unique PTZ protocols, night vision controls or in-house analytics is still a way off.

Supporting generic functions is already a big step forward, but “standards” still lack a uniform guideline for image quality. “Standards provide a framework for performance criteria to be achieved by the various members,” Gorshkov said. “But ONVIF and PSIA are trade groups, not standards bodies. They are interconnect agreements between vendors.”

Installers and integrators should be more concerned about designing systems that deliver the proper imaging for user needs, rather than just looking at cost. “Integrators need to maintain an appropriate standard of quality, rather than leaving it in the hands of vendors,” Gorshkov said.

Some standards are drawn up by federal bodies, such as Homeland Security Presidential Directive-12 mandates for government identification. “The government has extended its influence on physical access initiatives, imposing tightened privacy standards and mandating secure-compound directives,” Siew said.

The migration to IP has yielded benefits for businesses. “The industry as a whole has embraced what technology can do to assist a corporation or entity in protecting their assets,” LeBlanc said. “It's a multiplier that compounds upon itself. There are much easier ways to integrate into a solution.”

The accessibility of smartphones and tablets is expected to drive home automation growth to reach a wider audience, according to Frost & Sullivan.

As IP yields business benefits, it sees strong growth. “We continue to see rapid adoption of IP technology across product categories,” said James Rothstein, Executive VP of Tri-Ed/Northern Video Distribution.

Edge devices did well, as the hardware and software are optimized to work together. Integrators can save time for setup and calibration, while differentiating with analytics. “It offers nice infrastructure savings and operator efficiency for search and presentation capabilities,” Gally said. “The continued adoption of analytics in the mainstream is a critical component in powering an overall system. You can optimize storage and empower people to do faster searches.”

Delivering ROI was a focus for manufacturers. VideoIQ launched its first business continuity rule for 24-hour ATM vestibules to detect sleeping vagrants, which can be a problem in cold climates. “They're concerned about customer safety and whether people can go in the ATM to do business,” Gally said. “We can track objects that go motionless for a long period of time and send an alarm. Banks are actually impacting their bottom line by making sure there's access to ATMs 24/7.”

Other providers are providing more value by offering more functionality, such as unlimited installs for VMS client software and incremental licenses by camera count. “OnSSI has reconfigured how the software platform goes to market,” Piran said. Its scalability provides upgrade opportunities for customers with cameras and severs at multiple sites. [NextPage]

Network video may have reached its tipping point in several regions, but analog is far from dead. HD-SDI provides a midway point with HD video over analog cabling. “HD-SDI is only available in the U.K. through a limited number of suppliers, so it's not really launched or established yet,” Pigram said. “However, there's a lot of end user interest, and more manufacturers will be launching products towards the end of 2011.”

For network video provider IQinVision, it consolidated its M-JPEG and H.264 product lines for greater efficiency. “In 2011 we converted all our cameras to multistream,” Bodell said. “We now have the largest portfolio of H.264 cameras and consolidated part numbers. Since the market would not allow us to increase the price of the M-JPEG cameras, we are selling the multistream H.264/M-JPEG cameras for the price of M-JPEG cameras and letting the users select the compression in the field.”

This year 's multimegapixel cameras generated plenty of buzz at trade shows. “There is a trend to use high-megapixel cameras, in standard format and increasingly more specialist 180-degree/panoramic and 360-degree fish-eye technology to capture a complete view from a single camera,” Pigram said. “This is proving to be a valuable addition to many video surveillance systems and in some cases, customers prefer to use them compared to traditional fully functional domes.”

Among the high-megapixel solutions was a 51-megapixel multisensory system with a dozen lenses, capable of displaying background objects as clearly as ones in the foreground. “This makes it possible to identify people at a distance of 160 meters,” said Roland Feil, Sales Director for Dallmeier electronic.

More hosted offerings were launched in 2011, but not all sites have the infrastructure to support large bandwidth. “For the smaller commercial and residential sectors of the market, it's just starting and will grow in the next five years and expand to larger applications as greater bandwidth becomes available,” Pigram said. Norbain introduced a hosted access control solution, targeting multisite end-user companies.

And while megapixel counts might be climbing, few networks have the bandwidth to transmit enormous video files at real-time frame rates. “Distributed storage is a key component to intelligently manage data to a cloud service,” Gally said. “HD video into the cloud will require customers to invest so much in the infrastructure that it's hard to cost-justify.”

Managing access can now be done through integration with other physical security systems, such as video door phones for remote monitoring. “The integration of video surveillance with biometrics is gaining traction,” Sahayan said. “This growth in biometrics is expected to create the need for end users to utilize more advanced surveillance systems, particularly IP systems, which will be more cost-effective as a security solution.”

Mobile devices will also feature near-field communications (NFC) for access control. “HID Global sees significant opportunities in taking NFC technology beyond cashless payment into new, complementary physical access control applications,” Siew said. “The industry has made great progress in moving payment applications onto NFC smartphones.”

The global intrusion alarm market is expected to reach $2.4 billion in 2011, according to IMS Research. Opportunities were mainly in retrofit activities, as new construction has slowed.

Finding new opportunities was a top distributor target in 2011. “The economic slowdown has us focus even more on presenting ways for our customers to diversify into new product areas and revenue streams,” Rothstein said.

Network video channels have been tricky to navigate in recent years, as traditional distributors may not understand IP issues. However, IT resellers may know about networking, but lack security experience.

From the experience of 13-year-old IQinVision, security distributors are the way to go, particularly in the high-volume market or sites with less than 10 cameras. “In the early days, we focused on IT integrators,” Bodell said. “But more security channel dealers are becoming network-savvy. Three to four years ago, I would have picked IT as the channel that would win, because the security channel was not embracing IT. But with turnover, you get a younger generation of security integrators who understand networking, because they have grown up with it.”

While IP uptake is seeing more acceptance, education is still a challenge. “It's a fact that the end user and system integrators are exposed to new network solutions and don't know enough about IP,” Amir said.

Challenges in 2011 were spending and economic difficulties. “Western Europe has been greatly impacted by the recession, namely Spain, Italy, Greece and the U.K.,” Kozak said. “As governments look to balance budgets, there could be a slowdown in growth. The Americas is forecast to see slow growth in 2011 as a result of the high growth that returned in 2010 following the economic recession. Despite rebounding, the growth could not be sustained. The EMEA region is only forecast to grow by 2 percent in 2011.”

Market uncertainty forced installers and end users to reconsider their security purchases, even if they were satisfied with how they performed. “Economic pressures have forced companies to either consider whether they need to spend money on features they don't really need or conversely that the system they buy delivers more: not just in the security arena, but potentially in new areas which will drive economic growth of the end user,” Pigram said. “This has driven a trend to two different purchasing dynamics — cost-effective video and integrated IP systems.”

Regional buying behavior has further compounded market troubles. “Low levels of awareness on the importance of security and the availability of cheap manpower in emerging countries such as Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines are restraining the adoption of security solutions,” Sahayan said. “However, this scenario is expected to change in the next few years, as end users begin to gain more exposure to surveillance technologies through trade shows, media advertising, as well as success stories.” [NextPage]

After a relatively calm year, companies are gearing up for a possible debt crisis. In the face of macroeconomic factors, a combination of innovation and responsiveness to customer needs enabled companies to beat the recession and weather the coming storm.

One way to survive is through continuous innovation. “The path we embarked on many years ago has proven to be correct,” Feil said. “We address all aspects of video security technology rather than concentrating on individual components.”

While R&D is not cheap, it can pay off. “Our competitors reduced their workforces during the recession,” Moss said. “We didn't do that, we hired through it. When the recession eased up, they didn't have enough people and we had a bunch of new products.”

Warranties support a highly innovative position with guaranteed quality. “Given the number of low-cost competitors, we've gotten business back from customers who had catastrophic product failures in the field,” Bodell said. “We always boasted the best products, and in 2011 we backed that up with a five-year warranty on our minidome and a three-year warranty for our professional line with on-camera recording and analytics.”

DVTel also launched a quality assurance program, providing a lifetime warranty for new products good for at least four years, Amir said.

Tailoring solutions for specific applications benefits both manufacturers and customers. “Diversification related to multiple vertical markets is one way to ensure ongoing success,” Piran said. “It helps that OnSSI has a product that is versatile and useful in a variety of end-user environments, which allows us to focus on hot verticals without having to reengineer the system when the market shifts.”

One phenomenon this year was low-volume customizations. While this was previously unthinkable, economies of scale have enabled manufacturers to adjust products to customer specifications.

The goal of innovation and customization is to satisfy buyer demands. “Companies have to be consistent and focused on execution,” Amir said. “Focus on the customer.”

Continued engagement is about supporting user needs. “Our sales guys are with integrators every day,” Bodell said. “Product management talks to customers and gets feedback. Then we make a list of things, determine what's real in the long term and we invest in that. The simple way to say it is it's just the voice of the customer. You've just got to learn to listen to it.”

Extending the value of existing customer investments is crucial. “In the recession, we solved business problems for end customers and that allowed us to grow,” Gally said. “Our strategy and advice is to make sure solutions delivers a value-add to the channel partner as well as the customer.”

Customer satisfaction is not a new concept, but achieving it is easier said than done. Providing security and convenience at an affordable cost benefits all parties. As companies with a clear value proposition witnessed growth even after the market contracted, it proves that following best practices delivers real results.

Five-Star Hotel in London Deploys Fingerprint Readers for Employees

Five-Star Hotel in London Deploys Fingerprint Readers for Employees

Editor / Provider: Ievo | Updated: 11/28/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

NT Security has successfully installed our ievo fingerprint reader as a form of time and attendance at a luxury five-star hotel in London. The ievo software ensures that employees receive the correct pay and no disputes are made. In addition, time and attendance is very useful for fire safety. In one of our case studies, a 100 percent accurate report after a fire drill was achieved because of the software facility available with ievo.

The system has been installed for around a month and currently the client has received no problems. NT Security are a leading security system company based in the UK and are dedicated towards providing their customers with the best quality access control, CCTV and Hospitality equipment. Among this, includes our ievo biometric fingerprint reader which not only provides time and attendance but fully secures door access both internally and externally. We look forward to more high profile projects in the future with NT Security.

Your Face Reveals More Than You Think

Your Face Reveals More Than You Think

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 11/24/2011 | Article type: Hot Topics

Distinguishing lies from truths has never been easy. A developing lie detection technology from the University of Bradford in the U.K., thanks to the R&D efforts led by Hassan Ugail, Professor of Visual Computing, leverages facial-recognition cues and is about to undergo a real-life trial.

A team led by Hassan Ugail, Professor of Visual Computing at the University of Bradford, combines an HD camera, a thermal camera and an algorithm to monitor changes in facial expressions, facial-temperature profiles and blood flow. After monitoring these traits in a group of volunteers, Ugail determined that certain expressions and changes were often associated with lying.

The standard HD camera captures subjects' faces, and the algorithm identifies facial landmarks. Facial expressions of subjects are classified according to a system, facial action coding system, developed by psychologist Paul Ekman. The camera and algorithm help monitor changes in expression frame by frame.

Similarly, the high-resolution thermal camera is used to detect the temperature profiles and blood flow patterns of subjects' faces, which the algorithm also helps monitor. Taken together with the facial-expression data, the algorithm eventually makes a decision about whether a statement is true.

This new form of lie detection deviates from the reigning polygraph lie detector because it does not require physical contact with a subject. Traditional polygraphs monitor blood pressure, pulse, respiration and skin conductivity — attributes that are difficult to monitor remotely. By using facial characteristics, it is possible to detect lies without contact, and perhaps, without a person's knowledge.

In fact, Ugail thinks that a hidden lie detector may give more reliable data. “We believe if this was done covertly, the results would be better. In all experiments, the facial temperatures of subjects always go up in interrogation simply because they are entering into a situation where they are being interrogated.” This issue would be minimized if subjects did not know they were being monitored.

When working with humans, Ugail recognizes the importance of dealing with variability in a population, and thus tries to establish a baseline for each subject. “For this test to work, ideally what we need is a baseline because every individual is different; we understand that. We need to calibrate our system to the individual. This allows us to identify the normal expressions of the subject and the normal blood flow pattern and temperature profile,” Ugail said. When forming the baseline, subjects are asked questions where they have no need to lie, such as a person's name. These questions help researchers establish a “normal” profile of the person in the absence of lying, against which subsequent statements can be measured.

This system currently has an accuracy level of 70 percent,but Ugail is aiming to increase the level to 90 percent. Given the variability in the human population, Ugail does not think that it will ever be 100-percent accurate. The new lie detector will be used as a tool to help humans decide whether they trust a statement.

No Silver Bullet
There are still a few kinks that need to be resolved. It currently takes a few hours for the results to come through, though Ugail sees that number coming down in the future. Additionally, this technology is focused, at the moment, on the proof of principle, that you can detect lies, rather than dealing with the issues that would arise from using this technology in the real world.

Ugail is optimistic about its basic lie-detecting functions, saying that it could be ready for interrogation purposes in about a year's time. Given the noninvasive nature of this technology, it has potential in arenas beyond traditional interrogation. At airports, for example, critical security questions are often asked as passengers pass through customs and immigrations — locations where authorities may want to know if passengers are lying. In fact, there are plans to pilot this technology at an airport in the near future. However, use in a more complex airport setting will likely take much more product development; equipment often works differently in a laboratory compared to an uncontrolled setting.

From the lab to Real Life
An anonymous airport security professional and Stewart Heffernan, CEO of OmniPerception, were asked to weigh in on bringing this biometric lie detection technology to market. They identified three important issues to consider.

With biometric technologies, testing and piloting are very important. Good laboratory preparation is often hindered by unexpected environmental factors. “We've found that a combination of testing the perimeters of the software or hardware sets the baseline , and testing with a real-world environment gives you real data,” said the anonymous source.

“When you walk into an airport or public arena, there are always environmental factors that you have not thought of when you deploy these things,” Heffernan agreed. “There are almost always things that crop up once you actually deploy the equipment in a trial situation or live environment.”

Marketing Hype
People have unrealistic expectations of what biometrics can do, because of movies and popular TV shows like CSI. It is important to not only create a good product, but to make sure customers understand the limitations of your products.

“People nowadays watch CSI and assume the impossible is quite easy. It's important, throughout the process when you're launching products and designing products, to realize what problem you're targeting, what problem you're trying to solve and making the product good enough for that particular market or need,” Heffernan said. “You need to make sure your customer understands what problem you're solving and that you can't solve all the problems.”

End Users
Airports have practical considerations about the usability of a technology, integration into its existing infrastructure and the final ROI. For example, does the algorithm limit the number of cameras you can have on a server, which then would require additional servers and increase costs? “ROI can be measured in many ways: reduction of staff, reduction of cost, improved detection or improved transfer of information. Just because I reduce or remove certain issues does not mean the cost of developing and installing such software or hardware will be lower than having the existing manpower to do the same task,” said the source that wished to remain anonymous.

 UK Child Care Center Relies on Ievo Biometrics for Safety

UK Child Care Center Relies on Ievo Biometrics for Safety

Editor / Provider: Ievo | Updated: 11/23/2011 | Article type: Education

Based in Manchester the kids allowed childcare center provides specialist day care services to hundreds of children. Taking childcare to a new level, they pride themselves in offering the very best services by listening to parents. This includes making sure the kids are protected to the highest standard.

Initially the kids allowed childcare center used fingerprint readers because it provided parents and families with peace of mind. With no codes or fobs the parents are assured that no one besides themselves can collect their children from center.

Kids allowed have rigorously followed these instructions, but having installed a leading biometrics competitor they found major problems with the system they initially invested in:

1.With the original system, parents and staff with creams or oils on their skin where continuously denied access because the reader could not penetrate the substances thus unable to read the print. The ievo reader uses a multi-spectral imaging sensor which solves those exact problems ievo retains its functionality with levels of dirt, oil, grease, cream or cosmetics on the skin. In addition, ievo is able to read through some types of latex gloves.

2.The kids allowed previous biometrics system was very hard to use, therefore training staff and parents become a difficult task. Ievo has been ergonomically designed meaning it uses visual and auditory sensors which inform the user if they have been granted or restricted access.

3.Kids allowed ere registering approximately 500 users. Their previous biometrics system restricted access to below this number. Alternatively the reader is able to register 8000 prints. This offers staff major flexibility options as they will not have to worry about limiting parents access on site.

Los Angeles Airports Upgrade to Contactless Access Control and Identification System for Staff

Los Angeles Airports Upgrade to Contactless Access Control and Identification System for Staff

Editor / Provider: Unisys | Updated: 11/16/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

The Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA), which oversees airport operations for the city of Los Angeles, has awarded a contract modification to Unisys to upgrade its access control and alarm monitoring system, used to identify the 45,000 airport employees, contractors, police and others who work at the organization's three airports.

The work is an early step in LAWA's plan to move to a biometrics-based identification system in which workers at the airports will be identified based on personal attributes such as fingerprints.

LAWA awarded a contract to Unisys to operate and maintain the access control and alarm monitoring system in 2009.

Under the modification, potentially worth an estimated $10.3 million over one year, Unisys will provide services such as site assessments, engineering, installation and training on the system's new features. Unisys will also upgrade LAWA's network infrastructure to provide greater levels of reliability and security.

With the new modification, Unisys will replace the airports' existing magnetic stripe card readers with a contactless system that will make it more difficult for non-authorized individuals to access secure areas. The contactless system can also save money by reducing the wear on cards and readers associated with magnetic stripe systems. The readers will be installed at 870 access points in the airports.

“As the operator of one of the world's busiest airports, LAWA understands the need for secure airport facilities,” said Steve Soroka, managing partner, homeland security, Unisys Federal Systems. “Through our expertise in physical access control, identity management, video surveillance and mobile communications network systems, Unisys is helping LAWA build and deploy a security environment that can serve as a model for other aviation facilities.”

Efficiency Gains Achieved Through Integration

Efficiency Gains Achieved Through Integration

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 11/15/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Electronic security systems are used primarily to protect the facility, goods, equipment and intellectual property from theft and vandalism. However, they are also increasingly utilized to help businesses improve efficiency. Security systems are now capable of providing improvements in safety, productivity and cost control.

Current video analytics can detect potential hazards, such as water spills or safety helmets not worn, thus reducing health and safety accidents. “Video analytics can reduce the need for human intervention or monitoring,” said Markus Niederberger, Head of Marketing Support for Fire Safety and Security, Siemens Building Technologies. Examples of applications include thermal imaging, measuring the speed of conveyor belts or examining attributes such as the size and number of items on the conveyor belt.

Another application is presence verification. This ensures staff safety for processes that require the complete evacuation of an area as explained above. Goods can also be protected through intelligent video analysis. For example, video analysis can detect unauthorized removal of an item from a conveyor belt, or alert if items get blocked on the conveyor belt.

Integration into Industrial Controls
“Efficiency and productivity gains can be realized by integrating access control with plant automation software,” said Kevin McCaughey, VP of Security Solutions, Buildings Business, Schneider Electric. “In one example, a customer used access control to ensure the right number of people with the right qualifications were present on a manufacturing or assembly line, prior to start up of the line.”

This integration benefits manufacturing in several ways. First, starting a manufacturing or assembly line without the right number of qualified personnel at work stations can result in injury, product defects, manufacturing inefficiencies, reduced customer satisfaction and legal liability, McCaughey said.

Using access control this way can also be a management tool, McCaughey said. It can help plant managers spot personnel problems in a routine way on certain lines. With this information, plant managers can address and resolve such problems. This information could illuminate problems with individual line workers or line managers.

Business-security efficiency occurs more often through integration with IP networks, Niederberger said. “There is logical identity management to control login to production software, calibration equipment and programs, production scheduling programs, equipment presets, and the like.”

In addition, authentication to the manufacturing execution system (MES) can use the same token as the physical access control system, with biometrics providing a dual-factor authentication. “Authentication using a badge and/or biometrics reduces the number of logins and increases the speed,” Niederberger continued. “It also cuts administration costs to manage blocked accounts due to invalid passwords attempts. Security can be further increased by linking logical and physical access control. In other words, a worker can only log in to the MES after accessing the zone using physical access control first.”

The added digital authentication and tracking capabilities this integration provides delivers additional benefits for compliance and safety, enabling tampering or errors to be fully tracked back to the relevant operators. The provision of meaningful statistics can help identify those workers who need retraining, or bring wider issues to light, with a view to reducing manufacturing defects.

Furthermore, the integration of access control with other business systems generates synergies, Niederberger added. Not only does integration simplify the management of cards, tokens and credentials, it also simplifies other nonsecurity related business processes, such as reduced reliance on manpower, prevention of loss and increased productivity.  [NextPage]

Cost Savings
Access control reduces the need for manned security gates inside the facility itself. This enables workers to access their secured work areas slowing them down. For distributed access control systems, on-site card printing is made available. This allows each site to be less dependent on the centralized system, benefitting from predefined central access rules while also maintaining a level of flexibility.

Enhancing Productivity
According to Niederberger, productivity in industrial facilities can be increased through access control solutions in many ways:

For instance, integrated time and attendance makes it quicker to identify which worker is absent. This is important for critical manufacturing processes, where special training, certification or skills are required. Through integration with the HR system and skill databases, it is possible to seek out backup operators immediately.

Furthermore, access control integrated with MES helps managers track and log equipment maintenance, with details recorded centrally of who did the maintenance, what was done and whether it was done in due time. “This functionality is crucial in specialized manufacturing, where manufacturing equipment failure could lead to quality issues in the finished products, such as for aircraft manufacturing,” Niederberger said.

Productivity improvements can also be linked to safety. This is particularly true when it is essential to account for everyone during an evacuation, such as those on mining sites. “The full evacuation of the zone for a planned blast has to be conducted and verified as part of mining safety regulations,” Niederberger continued. “A useful application of access control is therefore one where card readers are installed in the buses that drive mining operators away from the danger zone, with workers registering their presence inside the bus through badging. It is worth noting that a similar functionality can also be used for emergency evacuation purposes, such as on oil platforms or in chemical plants, where access control badging can be used at emergency assembly points to account for people.”

Finally, a key aspect of productivity is increased fiscal transparency. “Access control on equipment or production lines enables for more accurate production accounting by providing exact internal cost allocations, exact machine utilization statistics or identifying how much time a worker spent on a certain process compared to a benchmark,” Niederberger added. “It can also help reduce energy use, such as cutting power to unused equipment. The same is true for time allocation for external resources. Access control can help track the time of arrival and departure of contractors to check against service level agreements and delivery performance targets.

Preventing Loss
Access control plays an obvious role in preventing losses caused by theft, vandalism or sabotage. In addition, it can also prevent untrained operators from damaging sensitive or expensive equipment, Lim said.

Furthermore, access control provides an additional means of controlling stock. Efficiency and accountability are further increased when paired with RFID technology. This makes it easier to monitor when and how many specific items were taken out of stock, and by whom.

Access control systems that enable visitor and contractor management functionality provide better control over who is actually on the site, and who is their host. They also make available escort functionality that ensures visitors are do not wander around on their own.

A centralized system that is integrated with the HR system enables quick activation or deactivation of access rights, based on staff changes. This prevents former employees from accessing the site or using equipment, while enabling new employees to be fully operational quickly.

Complying to Regulations
Health and safety benefits from access control systems. Access control can ensure only trained personnel operate in or around dangerous areas or machinery, reducing the risk of workplace accidents and thereby the number of lost workdays, Niederberger said. “This not only directly impacts compliance achievements, but can also reduce nonconformance rates of manufactured goods, which is particularly relevant in highly specialized and regulated manufacturing industries.”

Access control systems can be configured to register and verify certain criteria before allowing individuals to enter controlled areas. “There was one case where the client needed this functionality to comply with safety regulations, as some staff and contractors may not have attended the relevant safety courses,” Lim said. “However, there are also cases where we needed to deny access to staff who did not have the relevant certifications for required skill sets.”

Compliance is simplified by understanding the compliance requirements prior to the selection and design of security infrastructure. “That way, the infrastructure can be designed specifically to meet the compliance requirements completely and efficiently,” McCaughey said. “This is far more efficient and less costly than trying to meet compliance requirements after installation of systems and having to compensate for inadequacies.”

Although compliance with safety and health regulations is touted in many businesses, many do it as a “paper” exercise, Lim warned. “By merely putting coordinators or managers to check on noncompliance is a process that had failed often and is merely for documentation and retrospective actions. We often remind business owners that if a real accident occurs, there might be loss of lives and have many undesirable and unforeseen consequences for the business. Putting physical checks by security systems can certainly improve all-year-round consistency in the enforcement of compliance.” [NextPage]

System ROI is not easy to measure, especially when businesses are not aware of the inefficiencies or risks they are facing in the first place. “For example, one customer who approached us realized his operation was suffering from more losses and it coincided with a gradual drop in productivity,” Lim said. “He had tried many productivity programs but did not get any improvement.”

After the customer rolled out a cleverly designed suite of security systems, there was increased accountability in processes, visibility in operations and staff attendance. “Not only did the inventory losses decrease by 50 percent, the productivity from better staff attendance coincided with a 3-percent increase in overall operating margin,” Lim continued. “Who would have thought that security systems could increase productivity? However, in many cases, security systems discourages bad habits and practices in business operations.”

ROI is often measured though space returned to the business in dollars per square foot; system infrastructure cost reductions such as unneeded PC workstations, server rooms, phone stations; and system maintenance cost reductions, said Aaron Kuzmeskus, Director of Security Channel Development, Buildings Business, Schneider Electric. “In addition, there can be many soft savings as the result of faster response times with better information to help prevent an event, or greatly reducing an event's impact to the business.”

Operational efficiency can only be measured when objectives are met first. “In many cases for video analytics implementations, we realized that there is no comparison, as a human guard would have missed many things on a regular basis due to fatigue,” Lim said.

Marching Toward Efficiency
The inevitable trend for industrial applications is the movement towards energy efficiency and sustainability, said Jiangong Ding, Industry Director for Hikvision Digital Technology. “Digital surveillance and security systems are one of the most powerful enablers for this capability. Through technology, it is possible to reduce resource consumption and pollution, which leads to more efficient management and better operational efficiency with less reliance on manpower.”

Megapixel cameras and intelligent, integrated systems make it possible to have a comprehensive management platform, which provides support for further growth within the industrial sector, Ding said.

Industrial sites will continue to have strong demand for security and safety systems, due to the critical resources and services they bring to the market as a whole, said Gary Tan, APAC Head of Systems Solution Group, Bosch Security Systems. “Moving forward, IP-based solutions and fully integrated security systems will become a growing trend. In two to three years' time, there will be stronger demand for intelligent central management systems that integrate all the key subsystems, including the security system, and more application interfaces with automation control functions. This will mean the staff of such plants will need to be of a higher level and be trained to operate and maintain such intelligent systems.”

Industrial Facilities Adopting Advanced Security for Efficiency Gains

Industrial Facilities Adopting Advanced Security for Efficiency Gains

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 11/15/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

The industrial sector was negatively impacted by the economic downturn due to lower consumer spending. Production of automobiles and primary metals dropped 30 percent or more during the recession. The early 2011 earthquake in Japan was no help, as it caused shortages of critical components in various sectors.

These crises emphasize the need of facility managers to have more efficient management practices, which are enabled through the marriage of automation and security. This approach makes for a safer and more productive work environment, yet also has significant cost-saving benefits .

China has the strongest growth in industrial estate development, with fast growth also witnessed in neighboring India and Vietnam. Singapore and Malaysia are also having a healthy number of industrial estate developments, said Patrick Lim, Director of Sales and Marketing for Ademco Far East. “The key difference in most of the current industrial estates is the usage, and thus the value, of the development. There is a shift of focus to higher value use for these industrial estates.”

“We are seeing a 30- to 40-percent increase in security spending in these new industrial estates,” Lim continued. “However, compared to the older industries, the new types of businesses occupying these spaces are in high-tech manufacturing, R&D, energy and high-value services; which are much higher in value.”

Gone are the dirty and messy impressions of these developments, Lim said. “The new industrial estates are built for high-value businesses. Thus the emphasis is on good security and technology to add value to their business.”

Entering the Perimeter
Starting from the very outer rim of an industrial plant, there are several considerations for site access. It depends on whether the site is closed or open. “Closed sites have perimeter fencing that protects the entire site and its estates. The site could also be open, in which case the site can be freely walked around and physical protection is not present until you get to the building,” said Ian Hodgson, Regional MD for North U.K., ADT Fire and Security. “However, both types share similarities in how a design is secured. The design has to be based on two things, pedestrian access and vehicular access, which are approached separately.”

For vehicular access, there are generally several groups. There are the staff members who work in the facility, visitors driving to the site, people in the supply chain bringing in raw materials and, finally, people dispatching the finished goods.

An increasing number of sites are beginning to adopt ALPR to automate vehicular access, Hodgson said. “They can discern which group the vehicle belongs to. The security system grants access rights according to that information and, using information display systems, guide the vehicle to areas within the site. This helps automate traffic control and directional control, reducing the need for human resources.”

For example, there could be an external gate which grants access according to information obtained by the ALPR system. Information boards guide drivers through the most direct route to their destination. There could also be other gates and barriers along the way, which are opened according to the access rights of the vehicle.

Video surveillance that utilizes intelligence is used to monitor workflow and the direction in which people are walking around the site.

“When anomalies occur, there might be a reason to investigate,” Hodgson said. This reduces the number of guards needed to patrol the site. [NextPage]

Granting Access
Heading into the building itself, access to the building is allowed or denied based on a person's credentials. The greatest demands for access control solutions lie in time and attendance management, entry and exit control, and parking facility monitoring, said Jiangong Ding, Industry Director for Hikvision Digital Technology.

Access solution requirements can include almost every variety of readers and credentials on the market, said Kevin McCaughey, VP of Security Solutions, Buildings Business, Schneider Electric. “Specific use cases spell out which readers or credentials are required in a given circumstance.”

The type of access control used within the facility depends on the aperture, Hodgson said. “It depends on whether it's a person or vehicle, for internal or external access, whether access needs to be both ways, person-by- person, or can have many people move through at once.” For example, pedestrian access to the site may be limited by swipe cards and turnstiles, which allows the system to know if a person is on- or off-site. Closer to the building itself, there might be a simple door lock mechanism or another form of turnstile to restrict access to one person at a time. It all depends on the usage of the building.

In addition, more users are migrating towards biometric readers as they become more affordable and reliable. “Tokens can be shared among staff members, while biometric data is much more difficult to pass around,” Hodgson said. “Some clients require biometrics to create a foolproof security system.” While video verification coupled with access control tokens help in this regard, it is a more expensive solution.

The two most common biometric readers in industrial settings are fingerprint and retinal. “Facial recognition is currently still on the more expensive side of biometrics, as it involves a larger area of view using video and other technologies and a database for lookups and comparisons,” Hodgson continued.

“From an affordability perspective, fingerprint readers are preferred. However, technology is constantly changing and improving, and access control solutions that contain data and images of users can be related to by video systems. There are some entrylevel systems of that nature, but that technology is still quite embryonic.”

Furthermore, there is an increased demand for centrally managed access control systems. "In particular, customers who need to control several sites rather than just the one building require a multisite solution that can be distributed geographically and at the same time can be centrally monitored and administered,” said Markus Niederberger, Head of Marketing Support for Fire Safety and Security, Siemens Building Technologies.

Some customers require a fully centralized system management. “Others prefer a mix of centralized and distributed management,” Niederberger said. “Typically, these customers also require system redundancy, a next-to-zeroapplication downtime, the ability to interface to legacy components as well as the integration with their IT and HR systems to optimize the business workflows.” [NextPage]

Keeping an Eye on Processes
The use of video cameras on the production line enables real-time monitoring of the entire production process, Ding said. “It is also possible now to monitor staff members for performance, as well as compliance to regulations and company policy. When something goes wrong, the manager can remotely instruct or alert staff members to ensure problems are resolved quickly.”

Furthermore, video surveillance allows a single person to monitor several locations without having to be physically present, whereas in the past, one supervisor was needed to watch each location, Ding said. This drastically reduces the manpower needed for specialized tasks.

Machine Vision
Machine vision cameras can also be utilized to monitor the production line for quality issues. There are two differences between security cameras and machine vision cameras, said Hardy Mehl, Director of IP Business for Basler. “For machine vision, there is a very controlled environment, which means there is stable lighting and the camera looks at very defined objects. The camera or video system does not have to work in challenging light conditions. This is a big difference from the security world, where you always have the sun coming up or shades or reflections, so security cameras are more optimized to changing, dynamic environments.” The other is compression, as all network cameras use compression algorithm such as M-JPEG or H.264. “Typically in the industrial automation world, raw data is transmitted,” Mehl said. “This is a big difference that has implications on which interface to use between the camera and the PC. In the industrial world, you need much higher bandwidth since the data is not compressed. The computer is looking at the image, and you need the absolute best quality in terms of signal-to-noise ratio to calculate and get every little detail.”

Security cameras are different, as every detail is not essential or practical. “You need high-resolution, but typically you need compressed images that are just good enough, and you need lower bandwidth because you store for a long time,” Mehl said. “In the industrial environment, you don't transmit live streams, but rather you shoot images. You make snapshots and you transmit the snapshots in very high frequencies.” The two types of cameras are not interchangeable in most cases, but due to the technological development and market development, there are some applications that overlap. “The performance of network cameras, in some cases, is good enough for industrial purposes,” Mehl said. “For example, they are cheaper or give an advantage. However, in most cases, there are really two different demands on the customer side.”

Bringing Disparate Systems Together
One clear management level trend regarding access control, and security in general, involves manufacturers taking a holistic approach to access control technology, processes and policies to protect their most essential operations. “The need for a global approach is driven by the high level of acquisition activity among manufacturers over the last 10 years and the rise in risk and threat levels these companies face,” McCaughey said. “From a security perspective, acquiring companies also means acquiring their security infrastructure, policies and their risk profile. As the chief security officer, anything more than one security infrastructure and set of security operating policies and processes builds inherent risk into your business. There is more to manage and more potential holes in your security perimeter.”

Adding Video to Access Control
Integrating access control, security management systems and video surveillance creates significant efficiency gains in industrial and manufacturing environments, said Aaron Kuzmeskus, Director of Security Channel Development, Buildings Business, Schneider Electric.

For example, access cards used in combination with visual verification of the cardholder enable quicker throughput of workers without requiring someone to check ID badges, Niederberger said. “This is applicable at the security perimeter of a plant and within the plant itself.”

Video surveillance enables security operations to have eyes on an event, even when they are not physically present. This manifests itself in two ways, Kuzmeskus said. “One is the ability to assess quicker an alarm event or situation, and a safer manner of assessment in areas where dangerous substances or machinery be may be in use.”

Secondarily, video verification at access points can lessen the financial burden of stationing guards at sensitive entry or egress portals or to physically verify that credentials are being used properly, Kuzmeskus continued. While biometrics provides good identification, it can be problematic in areas that require personal protective equipment, such as gloves and face shields.

Integration between access control and video enhances productivity, as it can corroborate staff access records with video footage. A common example of poor productivity is staffers taking frequent smoke breaks while claiming to be carrying out other tasks, Lim said. “Another example I came across is for a sterilization room, where a customer had utilized our system to control. According to company policy, the time needed for staff to be sterilized prior to entering a clean room environment. However, some staff members deliberately shortened their sterilization period. As the staff are all wearing suits, without both records for exit access and video information, it would be difficult to determine which staff members violated company policy.” [NextPage]

Adding Video to Perimeter Protection
Video aids perimeter protection systems in several ways. “Overt video surveillance cameras present an aura of security by deterring potential intruders intent on gaining unauthorized entry to a facility,as they will be aware their actions are being observed and potentially recorded,” Kuzmeskus said.

In addition, thermal cameras can be used to supplement perimeter fences, requiring less cameras yet reducing the number of false positives. With a thermal camera you are able to reach longer distances, reducing the need to place standard cameras on the fence itself, said Ron Petrie, Director of Sales for Vumii. "Thermal imaging provides supplemental support for the security system, covering locations that do not have adequate lighting."

Using the philosophy of “deter, detect, delay, respond,” overt video surveillance cameras present an aura of security, whereas a site without dense surveillance coverage would be an easier target. “This can be leveraged further as a detection method with the addition of simple analytics. A video trip-wire can establish a virtual perimeter beyond a physical fence of property line, creating a greater setback distance, and increasing the available time to respond to a pending event,” Kuzmeskus said. “Video is another key enabler of virtual guard tours, allowing for fewer roving guards, quicker tour times and reduced guard fatigue.”

Cameras with video analytics deployed for perimeter protection solutions can help deter and provide early detection of some potential security breaches, agreed Gary Tan, APAC Head of Systems Solution Group, Bosch Security Systems. “This would reduce or do away the needs for physical patrolling around the perimeter. Depending on the site condition, one common application includes virtual perimeter lines or areas crossing covering a wide geographical area for early detection.”

For some large sites, it is too expensive and inefficient to deploy a great deal of manpower to protect the premises. Thus a good perimeter protection system, combining fence intrusion detection and intelligent video systems, is useful to supplement manpower. More importantly, it is proven that humans are not good at maintaining concentration for prolonged periods of time, Lim said. “We have had a bad experience with a public transport operator who simply refused to employ better systems to protect their transportation depots,” Lim said. “Eventually, disaster struck. Intruders breached their perimeter and vandalized their transport, resulting in public outcry and much embarrassment to the company.”

With VCA built into the cameras, fewer patrols are needed. “The verification of the alarm or event could be assessed and remotely evaluated first without the need to dispatch security personnel,” Tan said. “This increases productivity per staff member and lowers reliance on manpower.”

Perimeter protection and video analytic systems are also especially helpful for remote locations where there is no real need for manpower, Lim said. “One of the services that we provide is to remotely manage access and verify activities with video for customers with remote locations. However in most cases, it is usually a combination of manpower, systems and remote services. By reducing the high dependence on labor, this manpower can be diverted to engage more meaningful tasks. Contrary to the many unfounded fears, this will not lead to fewer jobs, but more meaningful careers.” [NextPage]

Customers Watching Too Much TV
Customers are often introduced to advanced systems through Hollywood productions. This raises their expectations of what a security system can provide.

Some clients ask for fully automated systems, wishing to completely eliminate human factors. “This is not practical with the current level of technology,” Ding said. “Any system will need a management platform that requires humans to maintain and operate. While a security system can greatly reduce a facility's reliance on manpower, humans cannot be entirely replaced.”

Some customers do not understand that manpower is still needed to manage alarms and to evaluate the response; access control and video can only tell you something happened, said Mo Hess, Director, Business Development, Global Security, Buildings Business, Schneider Electric. Another common request is for the ability to control and track who enters the site while not impacting the throughput of people, said.

“However, this would conflict with the initial goal of preventing multiple entries using one card,” Hess said.

“We always try to educate the customers so they can understand the solutions and technologies proposed,” Lim said. “If the customers simply refuse to adopt a more realistic expectation, then we will have to walk away from the business.”

The effects of television shows like “CSI” give users the impression that access control and video can track someone's movements inside a facility with time stamping of the movement, Hess said. “With video, the impression is that you can blow up an image and it will not be pixelated. Also, the ability of ‘facial recognition' to identify individuals is just not there yet.”

Furthermore, because so many add-on products claim to be “plug and play,” customers do not always understand that software changes could still be required in their security system, Hess continued.

Getting the Best Results
The best results are achieved when the consultant or specifier works hand-in-hand with the integrator during both the design process and the deployment to ensure a seamless transformation from the prior system to the new system — one that functions as needed and performs as expected, Kuzmeskus said. Each contributes their expertise: the consultant often has better knowledge of the customer's business objectives, while the integrator generally knows more about the capabilities of the specified components.

Most cases involve some degree of customization to an existing solution. For example, camera positioning often needs to be optimized for the best point of view, Kuzmeskus said. “In addition, dramatic improvements in video quality can lead to camera upgrade requirements. In other cases, a facility may have a perimeter that is adjacent to inaccessible or dangerous terrain, such as a refinery bordering a swamp area containing alligators and poisonous snakes. PTZ or thermal imaging cameras can augment the existing video systems to reduce the number times a guard enters that environment to assess an alarm, or in many cases, remove that dangerous area from a physical guard tour and transition it to a video guard tour.”

The integration between automation and security is always a dilemma, Lim said. “Unless there are real benefits in cost savings or functionality improvements, the integration tends to be cosmetic only.” The next part of our coverage explores efficiency gains enabled by the integration of automation and security.

Self-Serve Yogurt Chain Relies on Fingerprint Biometrics from DigitalPersona

Self-Serve Yogurt Chain Relies on Fingerprint Biometrics from DigitalPersona

Editor / Provider: DigitalPersona | Updated: 11/3/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

DigitalPersona, a global provider of authentication and endpoint protection solutions, announced Yogurtland restaurants across the U.S., Mexico and Guam are addressing Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliance requirements and reducing payroll fraud with DigitalPersona fingerprint biometrics.

DigitalPersona Fingerprint Readers eliminate the need for franchise managers to remember constantly-changing login passwords at each store location, and also help eliminate buddy punching by employees. This increases operational efficiency and reduces costs at Yogurtland locations.

Employees at Yogurtland previously used 4-digit PIN codes at point-of-sale terminals to access time-and-attendance and POS systems, while managers used swipe cards for override authorizations. One of the biggest operational challenges was complying with the PCI Data Security Standards requirement to change a user's complex password every 90 days. Franchisee managers and owners with multiple locations found it difficult to remember the changing passwords, as not all of their stores would change passwords at the same time requiring managers to remember multiple complex passwords. Forgotten passwords resulted in frequent calls to IT support at all hours of the day. By using Fingerprint Readers with their Micros Systems, point of sale software, managers and owners do not need to remember complex passwords which are different for each location. They simply needed to touch the fingerprint reader to release the password.

“I've had the opportunity to use DigitalPersona's fingerprint solutions in a variety of other retail and POS businesses, and knew they were a perfect fit for addressing our needs at Yogurtland,” said Phil Olea, director of technology at Yogurtland. “Fingerprint readers give you an irrefutable proof of identity and ensure that employees aren't clocking in and out for each other, and that only our managers have the ability to approve voids, discounts and overrides. Our employees were happy to get rid of their PINs andswipe cards, and seem to love that we are using cool, modern technology in our stores.”

DigitalPersona Fingerprint Readers have been integrated into more than 90 percent of the biometrically-enabled POS systems in the U.S. and are supported by a variety of commercial POS applications. DigitalPersona fingerprint readers enable restaurants and retailers to transition away from swipe cards and PINs, which can be easily lost, stolen or shared. In contrast, biometrics ties individuals to the actions they perform, providing a powerful deterrent to time-and-attendance and management-override fraud. Fingerprint biometrics also makes it easier for businesses to address the stringent PCI mandates for strong identity security controls and can improve productivity, as well as customer response times, by simplifying and speedingup system login.

"In the past, passwords and PIN codes were good enough, but today, PCI compliance mandates are forcing restaurateurs and retailers to significantly strengthen the security used to ensure only authorized employees access applications," said Jim Fulton, VP of DigitalPersona. "DigitalPersona's fingerprint readers make it simple for businesses to secure access to their POS systems and save money at the same time. Often, adding biometrics can pay for itself within a month by reducing theft and fraud."

Luxury Apartments in Spain Choose Wireless Biometrics from Databac

Luxury Apartments in Spain Choose Wireless Biometrics from Databac

Editor / Provider: Databac | Updated: 10/26/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

ID specialist Databac has installed a high-end biometric door entry system at the newest boutique aparthotel of Splendom Suites in Madrid, Spain. User-friendly terminals from Biodit were chosen for their reliable performance and intuitive usage, as well as their smart appearance, to fit in with the hotel's elegant interiors.

Opened this month, Splendom Suites Madrid has one- and two-bedroomed apartments of 65 square meter to 135 square meter and is located in the city's exclusive Salamanca district. Biodit Inside terminals are fitted unobtrusively into the walls, in light switch enclosures, to enable guests to enter their rooms without the hassle of keys or cards.

Biodit Inside uses fingerprint recognition and is completely wireless. Inside is connected to the management control software and other network devices using a wireless locking system developed by Biodit for the Zigbee platform. This connectivity makes installation easy, using standard computing resources and avoiding any complicated wiring or building works.

Databac MD, Charles Balcomb says: “Biodit Inside is perfect for Splendom Suites. These attractive terminals perfectly complement the designer decor and do not require any structural work to the classical building in which it is housed.”

“Splendom Suites Madrid is a unique concept in accommodation and we wanted to implement the most advanced biometric technology. With Databac's help, that's exactly what we have achieved,” said Santiago Torras, Director of The Suites Group.

London's Second Largest Airport Deploys Iris Recognition from AOptix and Human Recognition Systems

London's Second Largest Airport Deploys Iris Recognition from AOptix and Human Recognition Systems

Editor / Provider: AOptix Technologies | Updated: 10/20/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

AOptix Technologies, a leading edge developer of innovative iris recognition solutions, and Human Recognition Systems, the UK market leader in identity management announced their successful implementation integrating the AOptix InSight VM iris recognition system into 34 automated e-Gates at the Gatwick Airport South Terminal. AOptix was selected by HRS for their ability to bring a time saving, enhanced passenger experience to the world's busiest single-runway airport.

With the goal of improving the overall airport experience for millions of travelers from all over the world, the InSight VM is integrated into MFlow Track, developed by HRS for positive passenger identification as part of Gatwick Airport's automated security process.

“HRS has a great reputation in the aviation industry for deploying and integrating innovative world class identity solutions such as the one at Gatwick” says Dean Senner, CEO of AOptix. “Iris at-a-distance from AOptix and the HRS MFlow Track is the hassle-free, non-intrusive security experience that passengers are looking for at today's modern airports.”

The AOptix-HRS approach delivers a highly accurate match of passenger to boarding pass on a remarkably consistent basis. Designed for ease of use and high throughput, the system is intended to create secure, customer friendly passage into the international departure lounge area where passengers can shop, dine, and relax prior to boarding their flights.

“Human Recognition Systems has been deploying iris recognition systems for 10 years now and with the introduction of the InSight iris recognition solution from AOptix, we are able to exploit the full power of iris biometrics” said Neil Norman, Human Recognition Systems' chief executive. “We are pleased to be working with our partner AOptix and in having the InSight VM integrated into our MFlow product and having successfully deployed the first system in Europe at Gatwick Airport."

“Already passengers are spending on average less than five minutes in security” said Geoff Williams, Head of Security at Gatwick Airport. “With our new spacious preparation area and 19 security lanes, some of which are designed to assist families with young children and premium travellers, the new technology will help increase the efficiency of the security operation and provide a better service."

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