You are at : Search > Articles Search Results

Articles Search Results

112 Articles and 7 related Products found for Cisco

Understanding “Real” PSIM

Understanding “Real” PSIM

Editor / Provider: Israel Gogol, a&s International | Updated: 10/15/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

PSIM (physical security information management) software is a rapidly growing segment in the security market. Its core strengths lie in the ability to integrate disparate systems, creating an intelligencebased situation picture and supplying operators with active policy management. As the market learns more of the benefits PSIM they have the potential to go beyond security and turn into a complete site management platform.

The world market for PSIM (physical security information management) software in 2013 was estimated at US$160.3 million by IHS Research. Despite being a small segment inside the larger security market, PSIM has enjoyed rapid growth — it is estimated to continue growing at 20% and higher growth rates until at least 2018, according to IHS. Price and also end users' level of understanding of PSIM solutions are still main barriers limiting PSIM growth. In addition, the PSIM market's long-term growth is also limited by “competing products successfully being deployed in the mid-tier, a market that has historically been out of reach for the high-end PSIM software platforms due to their prohibitive price tag,” IHS commented.

What is a "Real" PSIM?
PSIM is a software platform that collects and manages information from disparate security devices and information systems into one common situation picture. These can be traditional security sensors like video cameras, access control, intrusion detection sensors, as well as “non-conventional” systems such as networks and building management systems, cyber security hacking alerts, and even weather feeds. A true PSIM solution is vendor and hardware agnostic, giving users the ability to integrate legacy systems and the flexibility and the choice to use best-of-breed technology in the future without limitations.

Being a relative newcomer to the security sector, and displaying a fast growth rate, there is confusion regarding what constitutes a “true” PSIM solution and how it differs from other command and control systems, video management software (VMS), or other security platforms, some of them offering their own integrations between different systems.

The main benefit of PSIM lies in its integration capabilities, being able to connect with existing and planned systems without being “locked-in” to any specific vendor. Usually VMS systems or access control systems use proprietary technology. In these cases, extending a system can only be done by the same vendor. Integrating with a legacy system provided by a different vendor could prove difficult, forcing replacement of existing systems.

In addition to this unique integration capability, PSIM offers another strong differentiator: PSIM is an intelligencebased solution. Collecting and correlating information from different sources means alerts are only raised on events that are important. “A true PSIM has the ability to identify unfolding events, manage them effectively, and mitigate their risk. For commercial, critical infrastructure, and homeland security markets, PSIM provides situation management and establishes the foundation for organizations' operations,” said Jamie Wilson, Security Marketing Manager for EMEA at NICE Systems.

A third important differentiator is the ability to provide active management of events, improving operational efficiency. By using adaptive workflows, the operator knows what is happening, where it is happening, and what needs to be done. Step-by-step action plans can be created to address different situations. This is vital in both making the operators job easier, but also in ensuring the company is following corporate safety and security policies every time and complying with local rules and regulations. “Without adaptive workflows, all you have is a lot of interconnected systems and you are solely reliant upon the experience of the operator to be able to coordinate the management of the incident,” added Wilson.

Adlan Hussain, VP of Marketing at CNL Software emphasized that dynamic workflows can change based on the time of the day, the threat level, and the number and types of alarms in the system. “This is what makes a PSIM solution an intelligence-based system and not a mere check list of processes to follow,” he explained.

These benefits, combined with growing connectivity, change the way corporations work. PSIM allows for a more centralized command and control, without being tied to a specific site. “In the past the security surveillance and sensors' monitoring had to be on-site at the place of the event. Today we can disconnect between the surveillance and the site. The benefit of a PSIM system is not only in connecting different sites, but thanks to the ability to display the same information in different languages we can connect a company headquarters in Europe with a site in Africa,” explained Hagai Katz, VP of Business Development for Magal Systems. “This connectivity allows the company headquarters to quickly address issues and make sure that the initial response is the correct one. A company can extend the benefit it gets from a PSIM system beyond safety and security. Other company procedures can be incorporated into the SOP, for example, making sure a proper media response is prepared by the PR function. In that sense a PSIM system also contributes to the company's risk management.”

Who should install PSIM?
From the technical point of view, PSIM solutions are intended for easy integration. It is therefore meant for cases when there are several legacy systems that need to be integrated, when there are several control layers (e.g., local and national), and when there are many sensors, or when future integrations with additional systems are needed.

PSIM is mostly needed for critical sites with high security requirements and large sites with many systems/ sensors. It is therefore mostly relevant for national infrastructure, large corporations, government buildings, mass transportation, and city protection projects. All these already have existing legacy systems and can benefit from integration. A city, for example, can integrate video footage from public space video surveillance cameras and traffic control cameras creating a unified situation picture in the control room.

Obstacles Facing Adoption
Though the benefits of PSIM seem natural and logical, there are still many barriers to its adoption. Some are due to lack of buy-in by different stakeholders that refuse to give up control of their systems and information; some are the result of past failures.

One of the biggest challenges faced by PSIM vendors is the availability of IT savvy channel partners. “Limitations to growth are predominantly around the current education levels within end users, consultants, and integrators,” explained Hussain,” We are working hard to increase education levels within each of these groups, and have created programs to address some of these challenges.”

Growing Connectivity and Greater Industry Cooperation
“With everything today moving at light speeds towards connectivity via the network and the Internet, PSIM is also migrating and expanding towards the ‘Internet of Things' via the information management aspects of PSIM,” said James Chong, Founder and CTO of Vidsys. “The open architecture and browserbased PSIM technology is enabling the software platform to rapidly and literally connect with almost any IP-based device, application, and system using open standards and protocols such as XML, SOAP, HTTP, SMTP, and others.”

Recent updates in PSIM software functions and features include integration with mobile devices, allowing ground forces to share and receive information through smartphones and tablets. In addition, there is an industry move towards greater connectivity with other business systems such as HR systems, internal directories, visitor management systems, building automation systems, RFID, intelligent transportation, and more. These will create opportunities for other benefits to be realized from PSIMs beyond safety and security.

“I think people are realizing that PSIMs can provide a lot more than just physical security,” said Michael Mesaros, Group Product Manager at Proximex, a Tyco Security Products brand. “We're being asked by customers to integrate with all kinds of systems — elevators, building management systems, luggage conveyors, and even environmental controls in airport jet ways. There is a combination of market forces at work and PSIMs must be capable of leveraging this data for more and more systems as it becomes available.” He pointed out that Proximex has worked to make their PSIM easier to integrate with — for example, by implementing APIs based on REST (representational state transfer), a standard integration in the enterprise IT world. “Following these standards opens up a lot of avenues for customers to integrate social and web solutions.”

toward greater connectivity and easier integration. CNL has created a PSIM driver development community, which allows other development houses, product vendors, and security integrators to create drivers to connect systems to CNL's PSIM platform. This allows fast production of drivers, and allows product vendors to create their own drivers if they are not able to share their SDK or APIs. In the past five years, CNL has also been running a technological partner program.

Another initiative to foster interoperability between manufacturers and establish industry standards is the Physical Security Interoperability Alliance (PSIA) led by companies such as Cisco, Tyco, Hikvision, and Kastle Systems. PSIA's mission is to develop specifications for physical security technology that will enable plug-and-play interoperability across the security ecosystem. This will make the integration of different systems under a PSIM solution quicker and easier.

Integrating Predictive Capabilities
PSIMs can go beyond event management and post-event investigation. The ability to integrate with media broadcasts, open source intelligence systems, and other information analytics gives PSIM a predictive capability, as well as a strategic advantage in predicting and preparing for incidents.

Earlier this year, Vidsys and HP Autonomy announced a collaboration to develop a solution that combines VidSys' PSIM with HP's advanced information analytics platform. “Social and broadcast media play an increasingly significant role in helping anticipate and mitigate potential security incidents around the world. The nature and profile of threats are constantly changing and this new generation of adversary often leaves a different digital footprint, creating potential gaps in traditional threat detection approaches,” said Chong. “The combination of a vast array of information, including social media chatter, video surveillance footage, emails, case files, criminal records, and physical location data help identify potential threats and take actions to neutralize the danger.”

PSIM to Offer Holistic Management
The benefits of PSIM, especially its ability to incorporate non-security systems, hold within them the promise of expanding beyond physical security and delivering comprehensive information management. A good example is seaport management, explained Katz. A PSIM system can make sure that an incoming truck is cleared quickly using LPR sensors for the truck and a biometric sensor for the driver. The containers can be recorded and stored according to their final destination and video surveillance can make sure the goods are not damaged. Since everything is audited by the system, the port can accurately bill the clients according to how long the cargo was stored before it was loaded on the ship. Usages like this, according to Katz, show how “PSIM allows combining these different work flows into one single story.”

All in all, the data gathered from security systems, combined with other systems can turn a PSIM solution into a comprehensive site control platform; thus demonstrating that PSIMs are not for security alone. In the future, PSIMs will allow for a more holistic management approach, combining safety, security, and management.

Total Security Protection and Universal Security Systems earn highest certification on C.CURE platform

Total Security Protection and Universal Security Systems earn highest certification on C.CURE platform

Editor / Provider: Tyco | Updated: 10/6/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Software House, part of the Security Products business unit of Tyco, is pleased to announce that two systems integrators in the UK have achieved Enterprise Level Certification, the highest level of certification and training on the Software House C•CURE Security and Event Management system.

With this certification, Total Security Protection and Universal Security Systems join an elite group of integrators as part of the C•CURE Partner Program who hold C•CURE Enterprise Level Certification. Installers who earn this highest level of certification have undergone a lengthy and highly technical training program on the C•CURE 9000 platform. C•CURE Partners must also demonstrate expertise in IT expertise and certifications including Microsoft and Cisco certifications along with skills in networking, SQL Server and database administration.

“Total Security Protection and Universal Security Systems have undergone an extensive training program and have proven their capabilities over the past two years in delivering and maintaining complex integrated solutions with C•CURE 9000 at the core,” said Alan Riegler, Sales Director, Tyco Security Products, U.K. and Ireland. “With their Enterprise Level Certification, Total Security Protection and Universal Security Systems have positioned themselves to handle the most advanced, technologically-challenging projects in the industry.”

Total Security Protection, a leading independent integrated security system company based in Watford, has built a reputation for using the latest security technology, for following high installation standards and providing outstanding aftercare service. The company has worked across a broad range of business sectors, including M&E, data centres and government sectors. Total Security Protection supports systems on a national and international basis.

Universal Security Systems, an established security systems integrator based in East London, serves a broad range of clients, including IBM, Standard Charter Bank and the London Stock Exchange. It has won several prestigious industry awards, including the ‘Integrated Security Solution of the Year Award' and ‘Large Security Installer of the Year Award.' Its clients are primarily medium and larger sized organisations located in Europe or the Middle East who require protection for major, prestigious and/or multi-site property estates.

The C•CURE 9000 system provides a holistic, video-rich perspective of managing access control, video, and intrusion using a deeply embedded victor unifying client. victor is Tyco Security Products unifying solution that provides an integrator's customers with a unique management platform that links events from access control, video systems and other integrated applications through one feature-rich interface. Users can manage events through a PC, Web client, victor client or the new C•CURE Go mobile client.

IDIS appoints John Psyllos DirectIP Project Manager

IDIS appoints John Psyllos DirectIP Project Manager

Editor / Provider: IDIS | Updated: 8/28/2014 | Article type: Security 50

IDIS has appointed John Psyllos to the role of Product Manager reporting to Brian Song, Managing Director, IDIS Europe based out of the Korean manufacturer's European headquarters in Brentford, London.

John joins IDIS to lead DirectIP™ product management across Europe and the Middle East. His appointment strengthens the IDIS commitment to further develop third party integrations, which deliver powerful off-the-shelf functionality to increase the flexibility and cost effectiveness of DirectIP™ surveillance solutions. John will work closely with IDIS technical support as well as the sales and marketing team to increase sales of the DirectIP™ line up by developing and maintaining high levels of product value, quality and industry recognition.

John brings with him extensive security industry experience across technical design, engineering, project and account management. An electronic and IT network engineer with a deep understanding of IP surveillance technology, John spent over ten years with leading UK security systems integrator, First City Care. In his most recent role as a technical design consultant, John oversaw the implementation and maintenance of tightly integrated security solutions at London headquartered corporate enterprises.

Commenting on his appointment, Brian Song, Managing Director at IDIS Europe, said, “I am confident John will further strengthen our DirectIP™ integration capability and rich functionality, to meet the growing demand for seamlessly integrated security solutions from across a range of markets. I'm delighted that John is already a fantastic addition to our team, and will ensure IDIS continues to be the partner of choice for our customers.”

John Psyllos, Product Manager, IDIS Europe, added, “We will continue to work closely with our system integration partners and end users customers to develop ground-breaking innovation to lead the market and extend our enterprise offering.”

John holds a Higher National Diploma in Electrical Engineering from the Tshwane University of Technology in South Africa as well as Cisco and Microsoft certifications. He has also held various engineering and training roles at Siemens Telecoms.

IDIS offers DirectIP as an end-to-end solution, comprising a range of cameras, monitors, NVRs and comprehensive video management software. DirectIP™ delivers prominent plug-and-play simplicity, combined with highest-quality performance and industry-leading pricing levels.

Axis secures sport center with modern and integrated HDTV IP solution

Axis secures sport center with modern and integrated HDTV IP solution

Editor / Provider: AXIS | Updated: 8/26/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Mission
The one and only task the client set for the installer was to create an integrated security system at the new Ice Arena site in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk. Like any sports complex, the ice arena has a large number of people continuously moving throughout the site. For this reason, the main requirements for the system were: full video camera coverage, high image detail, precise analytics and integration with the entry monitoring system.

Solution
The set objectives demand that the video has high definition, which is why the installer used three Axis HDTV network camera models when designing the system: AXIS Q1604 and AXIS Q1604-E Fixed Network Cameras and the AXIS Q6034-E Dome Network Camera. A total of 140 cameras were installed, both inside the facility and outdoors. A reliable back end using Cisco equipment was needed to process data from so many cameras. Intellect software from ITV was chosen to analyze images.

Result
The project is now completed. The client received a modern security video surveillance system integrated with the access monitoring and ticket sales systems. Although the arena is new, the video surveillance system has already repeatedly helped law enforcement authorities find people who have committed crimes at the facility.

Site description
Sakhalin's Kristall Ice Arena was built as part of the region's long-term program for “Development of Physical Education and Sports in the Sakhalin Region for 2010– 2018” with support from off-budget sources: funds from Gazprom Transgaz Tomsk LLC. The ice arena has a 60x30-meter ice rink with stands for 1,526 spectators, aerobics and general exercise halls, a fitness center, canteen, as well as auxiliary and utility rooms. The ice arena is primarily aimed at children. The arena hosts classes for local youths in all types of sports: hockey, figure skating, boxing, weightlifting, gymnastics, competitive ballroom dancing and chess. However, children's sports are not the only use of the new complex. The ice rink hosts performances on ice, concerts, regular-season and Sakhalin Region championship hockey games, as well as Russian championship volleyball games.

Project parameters
Like any sports complex, the ice arena has special security. The large number of visitors, excited crowds during games or concerts, numerous small auxiliary rooms — all of this requires heightened attention from the security service and law enforcement authorities. For this reason, an integrated arena security plan was developed when the facility was still under construction.

Implementation
The three key objectives of the video surveillance system at the facility are: general observation, tracking selected targets and facial recognition.

Toward these ends, 98 AXIS Q1604 Network Cameras were installed in enclosed rooms and 27 outdoor AXIS Q1604-E Network Cameras (for observation) and 15 high-speed AXIS Q6034-E Dome Ntwork Cameras were installed outdoors. In addition, the ice arena has clearly delineated access zones, which can be changed depending on the current event. For example, visitors to a concert or game should not go further than their seating areas; athletes should not enter service rooms for the arena's administration, and so on. This division requires an easily adjustable multi-level access monitoring system, as well as full integration of the access monitoring and control system with the video surveillance system. Another argument in favor of Axis cameras here was the high integrability of cameras using standard open protocols.
One hundred and forty video cameras create a serious load on the network, which is why a separate structured cabling system was installed for the video system to transmit data and to power the cameras via PoE. This helped avoid extra expenses for routing electrical cables to the camera installation sites.

 

The facility's high traffic requires significant computer capabilities from the analytical back end of the video surveillance system. Furthermore, equipment reliability and dependability are important. For these reasons, the installer and client chose to use Cisco server equipment. Intellect software with analytical functions from ITV was selected as the video management system. The Sakhalin Region government paid meticulous attention throughout the entire construction of the arena. As a result of the very first system tests, the region's internal affairs authorities approved Axis equipment for use within the “Safe City” program. The outdoor cameras installed at the site will be included in the internal affairs administration's network this year.

Milestone amps up with new sales director and managers

Milestone amps up with new sales director and managers

Editor / Provider: Milestone | Updated: 8/22/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Milestone Systems aims to continue its position as the market leader for open platform IP video management software (VMS): the company has recently hired more strong players for managing sales in North America, Austria, Germany and Switzerland and the UK. A new Finance Manager has also come on board in the US and the fast-growing Bulgarian office has a new HR Manager. The Danish headquarters has hired a Product Manager and Marketing Manager, too.

Mike Taylor is now the Director of Sales, North America, for Milestone Systems. Since July, he has been responsible for driving new business, tasked with expanding the local, regional and national integrator base and building out the consulting and Architects & Engineers (A&E) Program. Mike Taylor has been in the security industry for over 18 years in key roles that include Brivo Systems Senior Director of Sales and AMAG Technology Vice President of Sales, having started his career with ADT Security Systems.

 

 

 

 Peter Grubauer is Milestone Country Manager DACH (Germany, Austria and Switzerland) since May. He has extensive experience in selling and managing sales teams, from previous positions with Novell, Polycom, Tandberg, Cisco Systems, and Vidyo. He works with a motivational management style from a proven history of building, guiding and retaining high-performance teams to develop and implement strategies for accelerated growth.

 

 

 

 Ava Parissay joined Milestone Systems at the Danish headquarters in June as Senior Products Manager in the Professional Business Unit. With a B.A.Sc. Computer Engineering and M.B.A. from Simon Fraser University, she has worked more than ten years in the high-tech industry, most recently as Product Manager at Avigilon in Canada where she was responsible for the device portfolio and integration program. Prior to this, she was a Product Manager and Head of User Interface Design at Macdonald Dettwiler and Associates.

“Ava will support our team in a number of activities across R&D, Sales and Marketing. She will take ownership of the strategic three-year roadmap for the Professional Business Unit,” says Janne Jacobsen, VP Professional Products, Milestone Systems.

 

 

Axis cameras bring zoo live web-streams to the living room

Axis cameras bring zoo live web-streams to the living room

Editor / Provider: Axis | Updated: 5/20/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

The Zoological Society of Milwaukee provides support for the Milwaukee County Zoo in southeastern Wisconsin. The zoo features a wide variety of animals including brown bears, jaguars and penguins. To expand its reach, the zoo wanted to stream live video of its most popular and charismatic animals. Yet, each animal enclosure was a unique environment due to the diversity of needs presented by different species. The zoo needed a flexible camera solution that could work in a range of habitats.

Solution
Digital Design Services, Inc., along with Axis partner Camera Corner Connecting Point, recommended Axis network cameras due to their easy, plug-and-play installation capabilities and versatile product line. Outdoor-ready AXIS P5512-E PTZ Dome Network Cameras were used in the low temperature penguin exhibit and high definition AXIS Q6035 PTZ Dome Network Cameras were used to give intimate HDTV-quality views of animals such as brown bears.

An AXIS M5014 PTZ Dome Network Camera was fitted with a custom underwater mount for an exhibit featuring local fish. The high degree of customization was made possible by Power over Ethernet features enabling the ability to plug directly into the network without additional hardware.

Result
The web-streams became a hit, and the zoo continues to bring more animals online. After a landing page was created, the zoo was averaging 24,000 views per month. Following the birth of two jaguar cubs, the zoo used the cameras to give fans a behind-the-scenes view of the first months of their lives. The jaguar stream received 100,000 views over two days following a newspaper article. Zookeepers also use the footage to help them monitor the animals remotely and discover critical information should an animal become sick or injured.

Curling up on the couch with a tiger
The Milwaukee County Zoo is home to over 2,500 animals including tigers, lions, jaguars and bears on 200 acres in southeastern Wisconsin. To reach a wider audience, the zoo wanted to stream videos of their most charismatic animals on the web. “We wanted to bring the animals we have here to people at home or further away from our region who aren't able to attend,” said Dominic Schanen, Director of Technology and Membership Services. But with a variety of enclosure environments, the zoo needed a flexible camera solution to address a range of needs. Based on past experience, Digital Design Services, Inc. knew the ease of installation offered by Axis network cameras would be the perfect fit.

“The zoo and I agreed that the Axis products made it much easier for us to set them up on the zoo's system,” said Joe Rugowski, president of Digital Design Services, Inc. “They are plug-and-play easy, and they work.”

Up a pole, underwater and in the cold
The ease-of-install features allowed Digital Design Services, Inc. to design custom mounts and enclosures to meet the unique requirements of each animal holding area. To stream video of local fish from the “Lake Wisconsin” exhibit, Digital Design Services, Inc. engineered a custom underwater enclosure for an HDTV 720p-quality AXIS M5014 PTZ Dome Network Camera. They selected outdoor-ready AXIS P5512-E PTZ Dome Network Cameras for the chilly Gentoo and Rockhopper penguin exhibit because the construction could withstand the constant 40 degree temperatures. For the brown bear exhibit, the zoo wanted a crisp, intimate view of the massive animals, so Digital Design Services, Inc. attached an HDTV 1080pquality AXIS Q6035 PTZ Dome Network Camera onto a ten-foot high steel pole at the edge of the exhibit. “We mounted the camera so that we are looking almost into the eye of the bear,” Rugowski said. The various feeds are connected to a Dell PowerEdge 2900 rack mount server by fiber through Cisco 3500-CG switches. They also use Ubiquiti wireless access points to connect to the polar bear camera. For streaming, they push the video out to a Dell PowerEdge 2950 server running streaming software.

Keeping watch after dark
The Zoo uses AXIS Camera Station software to record on motion detection, and footage is saved for two weeks. Zookeepers often use this footage as a resource to monitor the animals or verify incidents. The cameras also perform well in low-light situations, so zookeepers can check in with their charges at night. “I've been surprised by the zoo's interest in using it more as a monitoring device to remotely observe the animals' behavior,” Schanen said. The zoo also utilizes cameras for security purposes.

Jaguar cubs meet the world
The most popular web channel they opened documented the birth and development of a pair of jaguar cubs. When the feed went live, the cubs were not ready to be put on public view, so the web streams provided a rare behind-the-scenes look at the first months of their lives. Following a news article, the live stream received nearly 100,000 views in a two day period. To deepen the connection with fans, the zoo added a link to an online store with a list of toys and enrichment items for the cubs. The zoo then placed purchased items in the enclosure, so the buyers could see the cubs play with their new gifts.

In the two years since their launch, the streams have become a web hit. The zoo is averaging 24,000 views per month, and they continue to open up new channels on a regular basis.

“We get a lot of feedback with people saying, ‘Thank you for providing the cameras and allowing us to be able to view these animals at home,'” Schanen said.

 

Paul Smith retail stores upgrade to Milestone IP Video solution

Paul Smith retail stores upgrade to Milestone IP Video solution

Editor / Provider: Milestone System | Updated: 2/26/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Milestone XProtect Corporate open platform IP video management software (VMS) with XProtect Smart Client and network cameras from Axis Communications are being deployed across all of Paul Smith's 45 stores as part of the UK-based retailer's first comprehensive, company-wide IT refresh. Initially the new digital video system is being used for loss prevention but once it is fully implemented worldwide by the end of 2015, Paul Smith plans to use it for business intelligence to assist retail operations management.

Paul Smith is an early adopter of IP and cloud-based services. In 2001 it was the first large UK-based company to migrate to IP telephony, installing a Cisco IPT network. Embracing the latest IT management approaches (including use of open-architected and Microsoft-based systems), the company has been able to maintain a relatively small network services team despite very rapid growth. Paul Smith has a retail presence in 35 countries.

This approach means that when new IT challenges present themselves, Paul Smith's Head of IT, Lee Bingham, looks for standards-based solutions that are capable of scaling quickly and effectively. He specifies that new systems and services must last a minimum of 10 years because he simply does not have the manpower or budget to support continual replacements of devices and software.

Paul Smith's legacy CCTV had grown organically as the group expanded around the world. When the IT department was asked to take over running Paul Smith's video systems, Lee Bingham insisted that it must be moved to IP video and be visible on the corporate network: "If it's not IP then it's not IT, and therefore it made no sense to move it from our Facilities Management team over to the IT department unless the CCTV system was going to be accessible on the network by authorized managers from their desktops."

The company backed the IT department's three-year global migration plan from CCTV-to-IP video surveillance. The installation and networking of the new video platform is being carried out as part of a global IT infrastructure upgrade, along with new retail Point of Sale (POS) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems.

Paul Smith's IT department researched the market for robust, scalable IP video hardware and software. After a painstaking evaluation process, they chose Milestone XProtect Corporate video management software and Axis network cameras. Axis video encoders were selected to bring some existing analog CCTV cameras onto the corporate network ahead of the full IT and IP video upgrade.

Lee Bingham said: "The fact that Milestone XProtect is built on an open platform architecture using Microsoft Active Directory makes rapid roll out possible, as well as cost-effective maintenance and support. Selecting Milestone enables us to migrate the whole CCTV estate onto a single platform to establish uniformity and consistency."

"Milestone fits our model perfectly. The open platform allows us to scale and add new services. We can control which managers can see cameras from which stores through our standard IT technologies. We can log in via the Milestone XProtect Smart Client front-end to view live and recorded video from all the cameras anywhere in the world. If there is a problem, we can generally fix it via the network from Nottingham without getting on a plane. This saves management time and reduces our company's carbon footprint.

In the future Bingham expects different managers in specialist areas like Visual Merchandising will want to proactively access the cameras to assess whether agreed store layouts are being observed and working well for customers. There will also be a higher demand for mobile device access to the video which Milestone Mobile can provide.

"Our objective, as the Milestone-based video systems have been rolled out globally, will be to build on this investment by extending its value beyond loss prevention," concludes Bingham. "We plan to work closely with our retail management team to explore the power of the new IP video system - potentially deploying techniques such as facial recognition, heat mapping and dwell-time analytics that enable us to better understand and serve our customers."

Europe's first security consultant to graduate from Axis Certification Program

Europe's first security consultant to graduate from Axis Certification Program

Editor / Provider: Axis Communications | Updated: 10/22/2013 | Article type: Security 50

The newly qualified Axis Certified Professional is based at CornerStone GRG, an independent global and UK-based security consultancy, and becomes the inaugural Axis architect and engineering partner to successfully complete all the rigorous requirements of the Axis Certification Program; the global industry standard to validate IP video expertise.

Commenting on the achievement, Jon Roadnight, director of CornerStone commented: “Axis certification has really helped us to set ourselves apart from our competitors by validating our expertise to prospective clients – not only with Axis cameras – but also with network video in general. It's the global industry standard in the network video world, very much like the Cisco certification of the IT world – a real unique selling point for us.

Axis has been keyed in the continued drive toward the convergence from analogue to digital video surveillance and has recognized that IP technology offers different challenges to consultants and installers in the surveillance and IT industries.

It recognizes that there is a need for professionals with these skills to be able to validate their credentials across the industries, making it easier for specifies to source the right expertise and reassuring end users. It has therefore added the Axis Certified Professional program to its learning academy.

Atul Rajput, regional director, Northern Europe at Axis Communications explained: “In a similar model to Microsoft and Cisco's certified professionals in the IT world, Axis is keen to help individuals and companies prove their competence and skills in network video surveillance and help them validate this advanced level of knowledge.

Data centers: Security without compromise

Data centers: Security without compromise

Editor / Provider: Tevin Wang, a&s International | Updated: 9/19/2013 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Digital information is becoming ubiquitous while connected devices proliferate with ever-faster transmission speeds. These factors continue to influence rising demand for data centers. Cisco forecasts global data center traffic to grow fourfold and reach a total of 6.6 zettabytes annually by 2016 and global cloud traffic to grow sixfold with a 44 percent combined annual growth rate (CAGR), to reach 4.3 zettabytes by 2016. The growth does not stop at data traffic.

 

According to IDC Research, the size of US data centers will increase significantly, growing from 611.4 million square feet this year to more than 700 million square feet in 2016. Data center security has become one of the highest network priorities. Companies that operate their own data centers will spend an average of US$17 million on security products in 2013, according to Infonetics Research.

 

Main concerns

The main concerns of a data center are the intentional acquisition of personal or corporate data by unauthorized people, according to Kenneth Mara, President and CEO at World Wide Security. Sabotage, theft, and uncontrolled access to a data center's assets pose the most immediate risks.

 

Patrick Lim, Director of Sales and Marketing at Ademco Far East (an Ademco Security Group Company) agreed. “The main concern is the amount and variety of people that access the data center. In an Internet Data Center (IDC), there are many different customers, each with their own staffs accessing the data center and racks. To make matters more complex, some of these data centers have their own contractors for equipment and technical support. All these varieties of activities and visitors create massive access control challenges.”

 

Another primary concern for a data center is the upstream and downstream fiber, which must be protected as well as the protection of the environmental systems which support the data center such as power, backup power, heating and cooling systems, added Jeff Slotnick, CSO at OR3M.

 

Perimeter security

The primary goals of the outer layer of data center protection, perimeter security, are the three D's: deter, detect, and delay. As an example, a perimeter fence equipped with sensors can serve as the first detection point for intrusion. This perimeter fence detection system can be integrated with intrusion alarms, limited access control points, high-definition video surveillance, and motion-activated security lighting. Security personnel will then be able to pinpoint an intrusion and immediately access the network's security system.

 

Vehicle and personnel barriers are adopted to prevent physical access to the data center while personnel barriers can be used to prevent unauthorized entry, including tailgating, added Benjamin Butchko, President and CEO at Butchko Security Solutions. For instance, retractable crash barriers can be used at vehicle entry points. In situations when extra security is needed, barriers can be left up by default, and lowered only when someone has permission to pass through.

 

Besides site-hardening strategies, a perimeter video surveillance system can also be used to detect potential threats and intruders. Cameras can be installed around the perimeter of the data center, at all entrances and exits, and at every access point throughout the building. Motion detection technology, for instance, can trigger alarms, while video content analytics can identify objects left behind to quickly spot potential threats. These technologies make the surveillance system more proactive to detect potential security breaches. Furthermore, video footage should be digitally recorded and stored offsite.

 

Security inside Data Centers

Although data centers house the data, applications, and access critical to many businesses, the layout of most large data centers is similar. “There is a security/reception area that the user enters to gain access to their system. Upon check-in, they go to the lobby. From there, they go through a sally port to get into the secure common area,” said Emily Flink, Marketing Manager, Biometrics, Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies. “What this means is that, at the end of the lobby, they must be identified as authorized to enter the sally port room. Upon entering it, the door is closed. At the end of the sally port room, there is another identification authorization performed before they can go through that door to the secure common area. At this point, they can go to their own cage or vault, where they will again be identified as authorized before going through.”

 

If a breach has occurred at the perimeter or from inside, the layer of protection for facility control is created to prevent further access, “Data centers typically have a large number of infrequent users. This is especially true of independent data centers which have large numbers of customer users who only occasionally visit the site. Therefore, the system has to be easy to use but cannot rely on cards which can be easily transferred from person to person,” added Flink.

 

RSVP Only

A solid visitor management system compliments and is a precursor to the physical access control system. “Visitor management includes all workers and visitors being issued badges that have

built in access codes for various doors and areas on each badge. This prevents accidental access to areas,” Mara said. “It is very important to have those working in the facility pass background checks prior to employment.”

 

Mere access control is not enough. Indoor surveillance for identification and monitoring, as well as multiple ID verification methods are a must. Surveillance deployment and integration with access control can inhibit illicit activities and provide an extra layer of security. An integrated system can rapidly verify tripped alarms, which allows for a speedier response. “Integrated video is a standard demand now for data centers,” Lim said. For example, video surveillance can verify the identity of a person entering an unmanned access control point by capturing video as the person swipes his access card. It can also account for instances of tailgating.

 

Computer Room and Cabinet Control

While the physical security layering makes unwanted entry from “outside” a data center facility more and more difficult, inner layers are often ignored. “Personnel security programs are generally not robust in private industry for employees or contractors. Gaining data center insider access is a fundamental strategy for industrial espionage attacks,” Butchko said.

 

The insider threat is huge, especially in areas such as government or corporate espionage. A survey by Cyber-Ark showed some stunning numbers:

*  85 percent of employees admit to knowing that downloading corporate information from their employer is illegal.

*  25 percent of employees say they would take the data anyway, regardless of penalties.

*  41 percent of employees admit to having taken sensitive data with them to a new position.

*  26 percent of employees say they would pass on company information if it proved useful in getting friends or family a job.

 

Although the insider threat can be the most elusive, security within the inner layers of data centers, such as the computer room and cabinet controls, can help secure the core of data. This starts with people recruiting. “Good internal security starts with hiring the right people. This requires a strong Human Resources program working in conjunction with the Chief Security Officer to insure proper and complete background checks are accomplished on all employees, contractors, and laborers which have access to sensitive areas of the facility. In my opinion, a good upfront background check, in most cases, will prevent a majority of internal breaches,” Slotnick said.

 

“Another area of consideration when dealing with the internal threat is how the Human Resources Department and the Security Department work together to insure terminations with dignity to prevent workplace violence or a malicious system attack. Part of the process for a quality access control program is to know which employees, contractors, and service personnel are no longer employed so their access permissions can be removed or modified. This includes the return of all access control and identification cards. In my opinion, this is a significant communications gap in most organizations where someone's status has changed and the security personnel have not been informed or kept in the loop.”

 

Enhanced Security with Multi-Factor Authentication

Inadequate authentication methods lead to sensitive information being compromised. Ultimately, the primary concern of core data center security is access control to the server farms. “The large halls which contain the servers need to be closely monitored to ensure only authorized individuals are permitted entrance and then only at authorized times” Slotnick said. “This requires a

complex system of easy-to-use access control features.”

 

“At data centers, assured authentication begins by accepting the reality that no one single form of authentication by itself is 100 percent. Even biometrics (including DNA matching) is not perfect,” said Phil Scarfo, VP of Worldwide Sales & Marketing at Lumidigm. “Statistical error rates, however, are substantially reduced when multiple forms of authentication are employed. The use of biometrics as an additional tool or second factor greatly enhances the ability to get closer to 100 percent in the continuum to assured authentication. The reason for selecting biometrics as one of the two factors is clear. Knowing ‘who' is the goal of assured authentication and biometrics is the only form of authentication that is focused on the identification of the individual, not something they have or something they know.”

 

Lightening Up

Preventing a fire is crucial in a data center. “There should always be a business contingency plan for emergencies. Advanced fire systems, which detect heat and smoke, long before a fire breaks out should be part of a company's fire safety plan. These advanced warning systems can reduce the overall cost of repairs and downtime,” Mara said. “Backup servers off-site at multiple locations will help to protect against a fire which could not only pose a threat to overall operations but also to an operational shut down for periods of time.”

 

Technological advancements in security devices, such as surveillance cameras, video management and recording platforms, and intelligent access control hardware and software have enhanced the possibility of a totally secure data center. However, successful implementations of a central management system rely not just on subsystem integration, but also on effective communication throughout an organization.

 

Market dynamics urging differentiation on business models and products

Market dynamics urging differentiation on business models and products

Editor / Provider: a&s Asia | Updated: 9/12/2013 | Article type: Hot Topics

No market is too small. That seems to be the talk of the year amid the reincarnated financial and economic uncertainty. Markets that were once overlooked are now back on some solution providers' plates.

Take enterprise access control specialist Pacom Systems for example; the U.S. and Europe used to be the focuses. This year, the company has hired a Cisco veteran to expand activities in the Southeast Asian region. “The financial sector is our forte, with more than 20,000 reference sites to back our claim,” said Giri Ramamoorthy, Director of Sales and Business Development for Asia. The company's network-centric solution designs are particularly well-suited for multisite enterprises that require centralized yet easy-to-use security management, and the new banks and commercial real estate boom in Southeast Asia, China and India are Ramamoorthy's business development targets.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Home security specialist Chuango Electronic from China, on the other hand, is shifting its ODM approach to focus more on solution design and market expansion in North America and Western/Northern Europe. “We are participating in more consumer electronics shows to show that solutions from China can be different and of great taste,” said Ken Li, CEO.

The same goes for distributors. Viewtech in Malaysia and Facility Management (FM) in Thailand, for example, are both in search for solutions that can do wonders and are better designed and reasonably priced. “Adding smart home and cloud capabilities to our portfolio is a must,” said Alex Ng, MD of Viewtech. Pichai Sihsobhon of FM is also diversifying his distribution-only model and looking to add solutions and services through joint ventures.

At the end of the day, “differentiate to survive” rings true.

 

 

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 >Next >Last Page