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Axis network cameras stand guard over remote power plants

Axis network cameras stand guard over remote power plants

Editor / Provider: Axis Communications | Updated: 3/18/2014 | Article type: Infrastructure

Mission
GDF Suez is the world's largest independent electricity producer, generating more non-nuclear electricity than any other provider. GDF Suez Canada operates two large 10-megawatt solar facilities and 13 wind-turbine sites, each producing 10 to 99 megawatts of power. These sites are all in remote locations, so managing and securing them would be expensive and labor intensive were it not for modern networked security cameras.

Solution
GDF Suez Canada partnered with systems integrator Freedom Lock and Security to install and manage AXIS P3364-LVE Fixed Dome Network Cameras and AXIS P5534-E and Q6034-E PTZ (pan/tilt/zoom) Dome Network Cameras at its wind and solar sites. The cameras record still images of the equipment for maintenance and management, and the PTZ units are set to “patrol” specified areas. In-camera analytics detect motion and trigger alerts, and the system is connected over fibre to central GDF

Suez facilities, where the data is stored on two terabyte video servers running Luxriot VMS. GDF Suez staff can view the feeds on computers, tablets or smartphones.

Result
The cameras have produced significant reductions in both vandalism and theft. Power plants use a great deal of copper wiring, and this makes them high-value targets for thieves. The cost of shutting down to replace lost wiring climbs quickly. GDF Suez found that preventing even one theft more than pays the hardware and operation costs of networked surveillance cameras.

Security challenges
The solar and wind power-generation facilities operated by global power company GDF Suez are vast installations set in remote areas of Ontario. The seven wind power sites are located on working farm land and each has six turbines scattered across unfenced land. GDF's two 80-acre solar sites are fenced but, with approximately 42,000 solar panels at each site, they are still vulnerable to determined vandals.

Value of deterrence
Vandals are drawn to power facilities, according to Augusto Di Maria, Director of Project Management at GDF Suez Canada. “At one site, on an annual basis, we would get a pickup truck driven down one of the roads and lit on fire. We always had to go in and clean up the mess. You also get people with golf clubs and a bunch of balls who come out to see what damage they can do to solar panels. The panels are surprisingly strong, but if you hit them just right you can do damage.”

To secure its sites, GDF partnered with Freedom Lock and Security to install a total of 40 Axis network cameras at its wind and solar plants. The all-IP cameras are a mix of AXIS P3364-LVE Fixed Dome Network Cameras, and AXIS P5534-E and AXIS Q-6034-E PTZ Dome Network Cameras.

“Since we've had the cameras, the vandalism issue is gone. The cameras are a deterrent, because when you are out to cause mischief, you look around to see if there are security measures. If you see cameras, you leave.” While the presence of Axis cameras alone has kept vandals at bay, the intelligent network video has allowed GDF to take security to the next level

Image usability matters
When an incident does occur, image quality is paramount, as Di Maria learned at a previous job. “We had people steal a lot of copper and copper connectors, and the video system captured them doing it. But the quality was horrible: we couldn't read a license plate or see a face, or even tell what color the car was. If we had better cameras, we could have figured out who did it.”

Di Maria wanted a better system at GDF Suez, and Gord van der Grinten of Freedom Lock and Security recommended Axis. “As an integrator, Axis is a win-win. If you put in second-rate equipment it will inevitably fail, and that is bad for the client and bad for my business.” The cameras use existing fibre connections at the power plants to link to video servers at GDF Suez' offices. The cameras are all made by Axis, and the VMS is from Luxriot.

The PTZ cameras pan through a preset surveillance area. If onboard analytics detect motion, the cameras lock in on that area. “The cameras record 24/7 at a lower resolution, transmitting the images to the GDF servers, but anytime they sense motion, they immediately begin recording in high-definition and trigger an alert to GDF Suez,” van der Grinten said. “The analytics have proven to be very effective in this environment.” In many areas, ambient light is strong enough to provide adequate illumination even at night, but when that is not the case, the sites employ the cameras' Lightfinder technology.

The cameras also take regular snapshots of the far-flung equipment to monitor issues such as snow loads on solar panels. These images are used daily by maintenance staff. “We have them rotating at intervals to take snapshots of solar panels and email those to maintenance personnel. We are looking for factors such as snow loads, and we chose the cameras based on their ability to take still photos and send them off,” van der Grinten said. Di Maria added that “part of our role is to ensure we know when the panels are covered in snow, and that is much easier to do if they can refer to these photos.”

Worthwhile investment
The return on investment has been immediate. “Copper theft is a huge problem, and not so much because of the actual value of the copper but because of the delays caused by theft,” Di Maria said. “We have to isolate a station—turn everything off, and lose that revenue—and then send someone in to replace the copper, fix the fence, etc. It's costly and it's a huge nuisance. If I can prevent one theft of copper, then I've paid for the cameras 10 times over — easily.”

Luxriot Mobile is available for beta testers

Luxriot Mobile is available for beta testers

Editor / Provider: Sponsored by:Luxriot | Updated: 3/17/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

Luxriot Mobile is a free application for Android and iOS, it allows users to access Luxriot VMS Servers' live and recorded video streams using smartphones or tablets from almost anywhere. This easy to use application allows multiple cameras monitoring simultaneously.

Until now most of the customers already were able to use their mobile devices to view live and recorded video from their VMS'es via the Luxriot Broadcast Server. But Luxriot finds introducing native applications for Android and iOS to be a great improvement for customers, since native application allows Luxriot to offer more important features as well as to increase usability and outcome from Luxriot VMS.

Following features will become available for beta testers:
- Live video from one or multiple cameras
- Play back recorded video
- Video stream quality adjustment for efficient bandwidth utilization
- Multiple Server setup
- Save camera screen layouts
- Snapshot to share
- Connect using 3G, 4G and Wifi


A&H Software House, is a global developer of an open architecture Video Management System – Luxriot VMS. Luxriot VMS accepts MJPEG, MPEG4 and H.264 as well as HD and megapixel video streams from Network (IP) cameras, encoders and video capture boards. Luxriot VMS is integrated with over 2500 devices from all major manufacturers and provides a client-server architecture to build hybrid scalable solutions from a single NVR/DVR to the multiple server system with thousands of cameras.

Milestone appoints new Director of Corporate Marketing and Director of Sales Distribution

Milestone appoints new Director of Corporate Marketing and Director of Sales Distribution

Editor / Provider: Milestone Systems | Updated: 3/14/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Milestone Systems, the open platform company in IP video management software (VMS), has hired Inger Holm Vinther as Director of Corporate Marketing and Kitty Van Der Sluis as Director of Sales Distribution in EMEA.

Christian Bohn, VP Alliances and Corporate Marketing, says: “Inger's experience from marketing positions at large Danish technology corporations with worldwide presence makes her a perfect fit for Milestone. Most recently she was head of Corporate Marketing at the global IT concern 3Shape, a 3D software and scanner company. In this position, Inger was supporting their rapid growth in 100 countries by building up a successful marketing department,” states Christian Bohn, Milestone Systems.

Prior to 3Shape, Inger held Marketing Manager positions in GnNetcom, Excitor and the ad agency Kunde & Co.

“With the continuing trend for open platform IP video technology uptake, there will be many exciting product launches from Milestone to handle the demand. It is my job to make sure that Corporate Marketing is geared to support this development. With responsibility for the Milestone brand and product brands, one of our most important tasks is to be even better at presenting them in new and interesting ways,” states Inger Holm Vinther, Director of Corporate Marketing, Milestone Systems. “I am also intrigued by the atmosphere and culture at Milestone. I like the entrepreneurial atmosphere, and I feel that technology is far more interesting and challenging to sell than shampoo or shoes - it requires experience and skill to communicate about the products in a way that makes it easy for everyone to understand.”

Milestone focus on relationships with distribution partners
Milestone Systems has been evolving its partner initiatives over the years, including more resources being allocated to enhance collaborations with distributors. To help lead these activities in Europe, the Mideast and Africa, Kitty Van Der Sluis is the new Director of Sales Distribution in EMEA.

“With a clearly tiered business model, Milestone sells all of our software through distribution partners - which makes them a very strategic relationship chain to foster. We aim to listen, support and grow together for mutual success. I am looking forward to continue strengthening the relationships with our partners, making use of my previous experience from the IT and security business. I am familiar with many of the challenges our distribution partners face in driving growth, and Milestone has the right components to address these,” says Kitty Van Der Sluis, Director of Sales Distribution, Milestone Systems.

Thomas Lausten, VP of Sales in EMEA, also highlights the importance of collaboration with both security and IT distributors: “Milestone actively interacts with our distributors, who play a key role in our go-to-market strategy. Kitty has gained valuable experience in supporting and improving sales and distribution channels in Europe, the Middle East and Africa in her previous positions at the international corporations Anixter and Tyco. Moreover, Kitty has comprehensive knowledge about the IP video surveillance business from an earlier position at Genetec.”

Axis assists Kwik Trip store chain for retail security and quality control

Axis assists Kwik Trip store chain for retail security and quality control

Editor / Provider: Axis Communications | Updated: 3/11/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Mission
The Midwest-based convenience store chain, Kwik Trip, needs to protect itself against the same threats as many of its C-store competitors. In addition, Kwik Trip also manages its own bakery, commissary, dairy, and warehouse – producing, packing and shipping a wide variety of goods for all its stores 365 days a year. At the store level, the company wanted to install a high-resolution video surveillance system to help protect its thousands of employees and millions of customers, minimize theft and mitigate insurance claims. At the corporate level, they wanted to tighten quality control over food preparation, storage and distribution, as well as improve safety and security across its facilities.

Solution
Hunter Security & Surveillance Systems, Greenville, WI-based integrator and Axis partner, devised a cost-saving hybrid strategy that augmented the corporation's existing analog cameras with AXIS P3301 Fixed Dome Network Cameras in high risk areas of its retail stores and outdoor AXIS P1343-E Network Cameras at its car washes.

Hunter also deployed a full-IP strategy at the various corporate operations centers using a mixed-array of high resolution Axis fixed and PTZ network cameras running under the management of exacqVision video management system (VMS) software.

Result
Axis cameras have not only provided forensic evidence of criminal activity but have assisted the company in maintaining high standards for food preparation and safety, reducing merchandise shrinkage and identifying and correcting inefficiencies in production and distribution

“Whether we're talking about our retail stores, kitchens, distribution center, manufacturing plants or other facilities, employee safety is our most important priority,” said Brett Gooden, Director of Loss Prevention.

Prior to 2004 only approximately 20 stores in the chain had surveillance systems in place. When Gooden was hired as the new corporate loss prevention director, he led an initiative to put analog CCTV systems in every store.

During this initiative, Kwik Trip was introduced to Axis network cameras by Greenville, WI-based integrator, Hunter Security & Surveillance. Matt Hunter, President and Installation Specialist for Hunter Security, initially recommended Axis for Kwik Trip's bakery and distribution center. Hunter suggested the high resolution offered by Axis cameras would help Kwik Trip better monitor their baked good production line, as well as verify product labels in the tobacco distribution center so they could more effectively oversee the handling of the high value items.

“From here, they saw the advantages of Axis cameras, so they wanted to try them in the stores,” Hunter said. The level of visual detail offered by high resolution Axis cameras provided the perfect complement to the analog equipment. “It was all about picture quality.”

“We partnered with Hunter Security & Surveillance to deploy Axis network cameras to cover the highest risk areas of our convenience stores,” Gooden said. “This included the front doors, the cash registers, high shrink merchandise aisles and kitchens. We relegated our analog cameras to building exteriors and low shrink merchandise aisles.”

In the past, Kwik Trip often relied on employee observation to verify the facts of an incident. Today, the Axis cameras have eyes on the situation. The high resolution cameras record and reveal detailed information about robberies, shoplifting attempts, employee theft, accidents and other activities. The video support helps the chain mitigate risks and reduce losses. “Compared to the old analog cameras, we see things a lot more clearly now,” Gooden said.

Joining the Neighborhood Watch
Many Kwik Trip stores are situated on the corner of busy intersections. Not only do these strategic locations make the stores more accessible to customers, they also serve as an extra pair of eyes on the neighborhood.

According to Gooden, local law enforcement often reaches out to Kwik Trip to review the video captured by its Axis cameras. “If something happens in the vicinity, there's a good possibility that the person who the police are looking for has been to a Kwik Trip right before or just after the incident,” shared Gooden. “It didn't take long for law enforcement to figure out that Kwik Trip usually has the best camera system in town.”

Assuring the highest quality control
Beyond the convenience stores, Axis cameras are integrated into every corner of the Kwik Trip operation. This helps the company achieve its goal of cost-effective operational excellence. For instance, at the corporate center, AXIS P3301 Fixed Dome Network Cameras keep an eye on food safety and sanitation standards in the dairy and the bakery, and AXIS P3343-VE cameras with weather-proof and vandal-resistant casing watch over ice cream production and freezer storage in temperatures as low as -40o F/C. In the distribution center, AXIS 216FD Network Cameras oversee a huge inventory of high-profit tobacco products that are vulnerable to theft.

Because the corporate center uses the exacqVision Enterprise VMS, Hunter Security was able to take advantage of the more advanced and intelligent features such as license plate recognition at the corporate fueling stations and near-immediate video retrieval.

The benefits of IP video system permeate throughout the entire company. “I deal with the Loss Prevention side,” Gooden said, “but our operations team also uses the Axis/exacqVision system to monitor what's happening in our kitchen center to improve the efficiency of how we cook our food. We monitor store inventory, especially the foods we sell, to reduce waste. Based on what we witness on the video, we've also added and changed store policies and training to improve the quality of our customer service.”

While each Kwik Trip stores archives its own video locally, the corporate communications center remotely monitors the cameras when incidents occur. Stores generally house the video for 30-60 days, depending on the size of the store, the volume of traffic and the size of the hard drive. When necessary, corporate extracts and stores incident video to preserve forensic evidence for prosecution.

Testing the benefits of full IP surveillance
Kwik Trip is currently field-testing an array of advanced Axis network cameras at its newest convenience store in Steven Points, WI. “We're building the surveillance system from the ground up to be a full IP-based solution indoors and out,” explained Matt Hunter, President of Hunter Security & Surveillance Systems.

Some of the features being explored in this test environment include two-way audio, HDTV-quality resolution with advanced H.264 compression, 360o and 180o fields of view, longer range lenses for day/night clarity and sophisticated in-camera analytics like license plate recognition.

This installation will give the Kwik Trip team an opportunity to see how best to incorporate cutting edge surveillance technology in their chain going forward.

OPTEX protects Canada’s construction sites in harsh weather conditions

OPTEX protects Canada’s construction sites in harsh weather conditions

Editor / Provider: OPTEX | Updated: 3/5/2014 | Article type: Security 50

The site
Cove Properties, one of Canada's luxury condo (condominium) builders had a large construction site located in Northern Canada to secure. The site is exposed to very harsh weather conditions and a very short amount of daylight during the winter months.

The challenge
Many developers and construction companies build throughout the year and are forced to battle different weather conditions including rain, sleet, snow and extreme cold. They also face the problem of theft and vandalism; theft of tools, machinery, new materials and scrap material costs contractors millions of dollars per year and leads to higher insurance premiums and potentially months of delays.

To avoid the major ramifications of construction site theft, Cove Properties turned to 2020 Digital Security Solutions of Alberta, Canada for help. Cove's requirements included a mobile solution capable of wireless communication that could be moved from site to site with surveillance, motion detection, lighting and remote monitoring capabilities. In addition, it had to survive the harsh outdoor elements of Northern Canada. .

The solution
2020 Digital Security Solutions found the perfect solution in PowerSentry by Mobile Pro Systems. The PowerSentry is a self-sufficient temporary or permanent surveillance solution, built as a ‘power platform' to power any security, communications and/or network equipment. In this instance the platform is powering 6 REDSCAN laser scanners from Optex which protect the perimeter and the inside of the site, two 8,000 lumen LED flood lights motion triggered by the REDSCANs, 2 fixed cameras used in conjunction with Milestone VMS platform for visual verification and event response; and finally a horn/speaker control.

“Despite abnormal cold temperatures, the systems are working great and we haven't had a system go down at all,” said Gene Telfer, president of 2020 DSS.

Exacq bolsters security at The Ice Palace in Russia

Exacq bolsters security at The Ice Palace in Russia

Editor / Provider: Exacq Technologies | Updated: 3/5/2014 | Article type: Security 50

The Ice Palace closely monitors audiences at hockey games and other events with the exacqVision video management system (VMS) software from Exacq Technologies. The exacqVision solution enables them to quickly search and find evidence, integrate with multiple IP camera manufacturers and view live and recorded video at all times.

The Ice Palace is a multi-purpose sports and entertainment complex in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Built in 1999, the Ice Palace has served as the home arena for SKA St. Petersburg and been primarily used for ice hockey games. Beyond ice hockey, the arena hosts concerts, fairs, circus shows, exhibitions and acts as a skating rink. The five-story building can hold up to 12,300 people.

Just like most sport and leisure centers, the Ice Palace required increased attention to safety. A common standard in Russia is the continuous improvement of video monitoring measures. The Ice Palace has seen a 10 % increase in the number of events occurring each year since it opened. With the increasing demand and more than 10,000 square meters of space and several floors, the Ice Palace needed a surveillance system to overcome the complicated issue of properly monitoring the facility.

The iPera Company partnered with the Ice Palace to design a video surveillance solution. Having past experience installing a surveillance system for the Arena-Mettalurg at Magnitogorsk, made this a familiar, manageable task for iPera to design and install.

iPera suggested the Ice Place install the scalable exacqVision VMS with a two-stage installation throughout 2011 and 2012. They selected exacqVision for its multi-faceted integration with IP video camera manufacturers and various servers.

To protect spectators and improve the capabilities available to the security team, iPera deployed the exacqVisions solution. iPera integrated IP cameras from Arecont Vision and Axis into the Ice Palace system. The cameras and exacqVision VMS software cover all areas of the stands, VIP boxes, entrances and exits, main foyer, cafes, player tunnels, press center and locker rooms.

Ice Palace staff members monitor the facility through a video wall displaying the exacqVision client software in the main office. The exacqVision VMS software is easy to use and navigate, so staff members could quickly adapt to the software without extensive training.

They can easily view all event attendees entering and exiting the facility. By using the client, they have effectively minimized criminal activity including entering with counterfeit tickets or bringing in unnecessary weapons. When the hockey players have interviews with media personnel, security staff can easily view and examine the interaction. Also, the exacqVision VMS is useful when players have meet and greet sessions with fans. Ice Palace security workers now have the capability to zoom in and see greater detail. With the integrated cameras and exacqVision client, they can completely and accurately identify people.

The exacqVision VMS software provided Ice Palace staff with the functionality to pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) on individual spectators faces in the stands. If a crowd disturbance is reported in a section, staff members can quickly search and view the video to investigate the incident and remove inappropriate visitors before a serious incident occurs. Staff members can also download, save and send specific video clips if needed as evidence for a case. Therefore, they can better handle situations and improve their response time to provide the safest atmosphere.

The Ice Palace has greatly improved their surveillance with the scalable exacqVision system. They can now ensure an enjoyable spectator experience while protecting its staff members, players and fans.

Latin America Repgroup reaches agreement with Milestone

Latin America Repgroup reaches agreement with Milestone

Editor / Provider: Milestone Systems | Updated: 3/4/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Milestone Systems, the open platform company in IP video management software (VMS), announces that the Latin America Repgroup (LAR) has signed a sales representation agreement that includes all of the Latin American regions. LAR is the largest manufacturers' representative for electronic security in Latin America.

Milestone and LAR have signed a representation agreement for all of the Latin American and Caribbean territory. This partnership is being realized with the aim to reinforce the sales and go-to-market activities that these 2 companies undertake to promote and strengthen trade relations with major dealers, systems integrators and end users in the security sectors of Latin America.

Eric Fullerton, Chief Sales & Marketing Officer at Milestone Systems, says: “We see a commoditization going on in the IP video space. For Milestone it becomes a question of achieving a broader and deeper presence in the local markets to deliver better service to our partners and customers – not just as a pure technology sales approach but with more people interaction to sell solutions locally.”

“We will provide higher touch levels with more ‘feet on the street' and better service for our Latin American partners, who are the differentiating factor in our 2-tier business model,” adds Manuel Nylen, Milestone's Vice President of Field Sales, Americas . “LAR will be representing the full portfolio of Milestone products, covering all segments of the market. We will still have factory representation (Milestone sales managers) and LAR is a valuable supplement to our own resources.”

With over 10 years in the Latin American market, LAR has become the largest manufacturers' representative in the electronic security industry, meeting the needs of system integrators and security equipment dealers within CCTV, IP, Access Control, and Fire. LAR has offices in Texas, Mexico City, Guadalajara, Chihuahua, Colombia and Venezuela.

Glenn Patrizio, Director of LAR, states: “We are very proud of this agreement because Milestone Systems has proven to be a company at the forefront of technology and innovation. Milestone also supports our approach to business through maintaining trained teams in the vendor products that we represent, to always be knowledgeable about the major challenges, risks and opportunities in the security industry.”

The agreement between Milestone Systems and Latin America Repgroup takes effect as of March 1, 2014.

Milestone widens devices support with more than 3,000 products

Milestone widens devices support with more than 3,000 products

Editor / Provider: Milestone Systems | Updated: 3/3/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Milestone Systems, the open platform company in IP video management software (VMS), has released Device Pack 7.2 for partners and customers using Milestone Xprotect security solutions. Device Pack 7.2 has deep driver support for more than 3,000 devices, which means that Milestone has added more than 2,000 supported devices since 2011. This speedy development has only been possible due to Milestone's dedicated efforts to drive the uptake of open platform technology in the physical security industry.

The Milestone Device Packs include optimized drivers that enable all the relevant capabilities of a camera or other hardware device to be managed fully by the XProtect software. Milestone works closely with the device manufacturers in the Manufacturer Alliance Program (MAP) to achieve the optimal interaction between their devices and the XProtect VMS. This ensures the highest quality for a video surveillance solution - very important for total system operability, efficiency and stability.

Milestone is actively promoting driver standards like ONVIF and PSIA, but these standards are not always able to keep up with the rapid development of security device hardware. Milestone steps up with dedicated, deep driver support to ensure that partners can leverage the newest device technologies in their solutions, with the freedom to choose camera models from more than 100 manufacturers in the Manufacturer Alliance Partner (MAP) network.

Christian Bohn, Milestone Systems VP Corporate Marketing & Alliances, says: “The release of Device Pack 7.2 with deep support for a record number of devices clearly highlights our total dedication to give our partners not only the best VMS, but also the broadest and most comprehensive device support in the market. The ability to add 2,000 devices in just 3 years is only made possible by having an open platform strategy, and clearly showcases the power of our open platform. We celebrated this at Intersec 2014 in Dubai, where we announced the 3000th supported device was the AXIS Q6045 HD high-speed PTZ dome camera, and it was a pleasure recognizing a key Alliance Partner this way.”

The supported devices in the Milestone Device Pack 7.2 span from simple USB webcams to highly specialized thermography cameras from Pelco by Schneider Electrics that enable precise monitoring of temperature. These cameras can be used in the food industry, for example, to ensure that refrigerated and frozen goods always are kept at the right temperature for freshness and safety. Another supported option comes from the Bosch Security Systems MIC Series 550 cameras with integrated lens wipers. Here the Milestone deep driver support enables an XProtect customer to activate the wiper from the VMS, ensuring clear images even in the worst rainstorm.

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."

Milestone to provide tighter support for Pelco IP cameras

Milestone to provide tighter support for Pelco IP cameras

Editor / Provider: Milestone Systems | Updated: 2/19/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Milestone Systems, the open platform company in IP video management software is tightening relations with Pelco by Schneider Electric, a globl manufacturer of IP cameras and IP video accessories. This collaboration is evolving for Pelco as a long-time Milestone Manufacturer Alliance Partner (MAP), in response to market demand. Milestone Channel Partners and customers now gain the advantage of new and deeper integrations between Pelco IP Cameras and Milestone Systems IP video management software (VMS).

Going forward, Milestone Systems will provide deeper integration support for Pelco's IP-based cameras in the award-winning Xprotect -familiy of open platform VMS. The closer relationship between Milestone's open platform and Pelco's IP cameras enables partners and customers to explore the advanced capacities of Pelco cameras and Milestone XProtect video management software. This gives Milestone and Pelco active roles in shaping and driving the industry by better supporting the channel partners who create solutions to meet the diverse needs of customers worldwide.

The support of Pelco analytics with the latest version of Milestone device pack is already a good example of this cooperation. It gives our joint customers the possibility to use at the edge advance analytics and have events and information reported and managed by Milestone XProtect software.

Christian Bohn, Milestone Systems VP Corporate Marketing & Alliances, says: “We are not only excited to further intensify our cooperation with a leading IP-based camera manufacturer like Pelco, we are also seeing great advantages for the market by providing better support for Pelcos advanced technologies. This initiative further expands the possibilities for our channel partners, as they now get more options to integrate Pelco's advanced IP cameras into cutting-edge solutions utilizing Pelco and Milestone technologies to their fullest extent.”

Pelco Stephane Lantoine, Pelco by Schneider Electric Director of Integration Operations, says “We are very pleased. Our collaboration with Milestone demonstrates Pelco's commitment to be a true open systems provider, and we will continuously focus on the areas that will offer flexible, reliable and scalable feature-rich integrated security solutions to our mutual customers. We are excited about this cooperation as it opens the door to achieve win-win cases for both companies in the video surveillance market.”

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