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Balkan Security Taking Off

Balkan Security Taking Off

Editor / Provider: a&s Adria | Updated: 12/24/2010 | Article type: Hot Topics

Partly due to the region's own healthy market drivers, and partly as a result of the welcomed financial infusions of the International Monetary Fund and the E.U., the economy of the Balkan countries is reborn. IMS Research shares insights on its forecast of the video surveillance market development in the Balkan region.

A recent report issued by IMS Research, “The East Europe and Russia Market for CCTV and Video Surveillance Equipment,” forecasts strong growth for the video surveillance market in the Balkan region. With more foreign investment in the area and an increase in the spending level on physical security for some countries — Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia — currently with low video surveillance penetration, the video surveillance market will grow at a double-digit rate annually in the next five years. As such, the Balkan region will become one of the largest markets for video surveillance equipment in Eastern Europe.

In particular, Romania and Slovenia are expected to offer bountiful opportunities for video surveillance manufacturers. The Romanian market, which accounted for just about 50 percent of equipment sales in the Balkans in 2009, will grow at a similar pace as the rest of the region, surpassing the Czech Republic in growth rate from 2011 onward. “The Slovenian market, despite having only a population of two million, has a surprisingly large number of video surveillance project tenders out to bid,” said William Rhodes, Research Analyst for Video Surveillance and VCA, IMS Research. A large proportion of these tenders are based on network video surveillance specifications. “Slovenia, among other nations within the Balkans, will drive market growth over the next five years,” Rhodes said.

Regional Differences
Many indicators were used to estimate the magnitude of the Eastern European markets, including the size of the economy, the size of railway network in each country and the amount of retail businesses. The research finds that not all countries offer similar growth potentials.

Despite the various large-scale, IP-based infrastructure projects implemented in Bosnia and Herzegovina, such as the construction of the Corridor 5C Highway, the Sarajevo Airport, the Al Shiddi International mall center and new hydropower plants, researchers are conservative in predicting an equally booming surveillance market for the country. “In the long term, once these projects have been completed, it is unlikely that the video surveillance equipment market will grow as substantially,” Rhodes said. The market will, then, be dominated by smaller projects and a replacement market, Rhodes added.

Considerations
The private entrepreneurship segment and major public operators have collaborated in the fields of telecommunication, ADSL, DSL and the Internet to offer broadband services like remote video surveillance, although hosted video or video surveillance as a service (VSaaS) has had limited breakthroughs in mature video surveillance markets in Western Europe. For smaller countries in the Balkan region, an average monthly fee of US$8 to 14 for VSaaS solutions might have limited success due to price sensitivity, Rhodes said. Another factor that will impede the adoption of VSassS is bandwidth capacity, which awaits further expansion. However, as network infrastructure investment continues in the region, bandwidth will pose less issues, Rhodes said.

The degree of government involvement will also play an important role in shaping an upbeat market in the Balkans. Government funding, EU funding and private investment may not completely support the growing market, but will surely provide project opportunities in the countries, resulting in market growth. Public and private legislations could also provoke or inhibit growth capacity. Privacy laws have the potential to curb installations of surveillance systems in various private sectors, but other state regulations will have a chance to boost system installments, such as setting a minimum standard of security systems in all banking institutions.

Exciting Years Ahead
Backed by stable government support and available capital funding, the video surveillance market is waiting to be explored as the region experiences an infrastructure and economic boom in the next several years. “With a large new retail park planned in Bucharest in 2010 and many western brands such as Carrefour, Tesco, Wal-Mart and Ikea looking to expand their existing establishments, retail in the region will be one vertical that drives growth of the video surveillance equipment market in the coming years,” Rhodes said.

Nice Situation Management Solution Descends at US International Airport

Nice Situation Management Solution Descends at US International Airport

Editor / Provider: Nice Systems | Updated: 12/16/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

Nice Systems, a provider of intent-based solutions that extract insight to impact business performance, reduce financial risk and ensure safety and security, announced that the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport has implemented Nice's situation management solution in its new security operations center. The center serves as the coordination hub for all airport security operations and emergency response activities. The deployment is part of a larger security upgrade project undertaken by the Armstrong International Airport to meet stringent Transportation Security Administration (TSA) airport security regulations. Armstrong International Airport is the first North American airport to deploy the situation management solution. Johnson Controls is the system integrator on the project.

The primary commercial airport for the New Orleans metropolitan area and southeast Louisiana, Armstrong International Airport served 7.8 million passengers in 2009. Through Nice's open architecture, the airport is able to integrate a number of third-party systems including a computer-aided dispatch system, various video solutions, a fire alarm system, an access control solution, and other security and medical/health emergency systems. The system ties all of these diverse security and safety systems together in order to correlate data and alert dispatchers in real time to incidents that require attention.

For example, a specific alert that comes from the access control system at a jet bridge, the protected passenger walkway used to board the airplane, will automatically trigger an alert from the platform, providing the operational picture in real time, including the relevant video feed, status of sensors and maps showing the location coordinates of the incident. Its framework for automating complex response workflows also ensures that dispatchers follow standard operating procedures when handling any threat or emergency.

Nice situation management solution is helping the Armstrong International Airport comply with TSA directives, specifically with respect to preventing and detecting unauthorized entry to secured areas, evaluating threats in accordance with the airport's security program, and if emergencies do occur, taking appropriate actions as specified in the airport's emergency plan.

"At Armstrong International Airport we are proud to employ security and safety technologies from many different companies, and Nice solution is the centerpiece of that," said John Lyon, Telecommunications Manager for Armstrong International Airport. "Our dispatchers are able to immediately get a single view of a situation across our many different security and safety systems, with real-time analysis and alerts, and embedded response plans to guide their actions."

"Normally it could take a year to customize a solution of this magnitude, but with Nice, we were able to accelerate the deployment and complete the initial implementation in a matter of weeks," Lyon said.

IndigoVision Surveillance System Soars at UK Airport

IndigoVision Surveillance System Soars at UK Airport

Editor / Provider: IndigoVision | Updated: 12/10/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

Cardiff Airport has replaced its surveillance capability with an IP video system from IndigoVision. Operated by TBI Abertis Airports, Cardiff Airport is the national airport of Wales with passenger traffic reaching more than 1.6 million in 2009. It is an important business and charter airport offering flights to domestic and European destinations as well as connecting flights onwards to worldwide destinations.

Choosing IndigoVision’s technology was an easy decision for the airport having had more than eight-year experience of operation from a similar system at London Luton Airport, which is also operated by TBI Abertis Airports. The system at London Luton Airport was first installed in 2002.

“All surveillance images are streamed as digital video in real time at 25 fps across the network. By using network protocols and IndigoVision’s multicast capabilities it is possible to view live video at multiple locations with no impact on the network bandwidth. Numerous separate viewing locations are able to view the surveillance images simultaneously,” said Steve Tyler, MD of Touchstone Electronics Limited, IndigoVision’s partner and system integrator for the project.

IndigoVision’s security management software is used to monitor live and recorded video from any of the cameras. It is used by the airport’s operations and security teams, and also by government authorities including South Wales Police and the UK Border Agency. Potential security threats can be identified much faster with IndigoVision’s analytics and search facilities on the platform, such as the thumbnail search feature that allows 24-hour of video to be searched in a matter of seconds.

Touchstone Electronics installed 96 of IndigoVision’s H.264 fixed, dome and PTZ cameras and 26 of standalone NVRs. The NVRs are mirrored creating a redundant and fault tolerant recording solution. Video from each camera is continuously recorded onto a primary and backup NVR simultaneously. In the event of a NVR failure, no recordings are lost. In addition, the NVRs have dual redundant power and network connections and are fitted with RAID configured, surveillance rated disks. A total of 104 TB of disk storage allows the airport to archive 4CIF 25 fps video from each camera 24/7 for more than 30 days. In the event of an incident, evidential quality video can be exported to assist with investigations and for use in court.

Biometric Access Control System Installed at Chicago Office

Biometric Access Control System Installed at Chicago Office

Editor / Provider: FST21 | Updated: 12/3/2010 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Los Alamos Technical Associates (LATA) has installed access control system from FST21 in its downtown Chicago office. The LATA entrance allows access by recognizing employees by the way they look, talk and walk as well as being aware if they are in distress and can even carry a conversation with them and their visitors.

The system modernizes the way people enter buildings, offices and secure areas. No key, no card and no code are required because the face and voice of authorized personnel works as a key. Using biometrics with a combination of face, voice, license plate and pattern of behavior recognition, the access control system provides automated convenient identity management access while maintaining the high level of security.

LATA, a diversified engineering, environmental and technical services company serving worldwide clients, has repeatedly set standards for excellence and has demonstrated capabilities for solving the scientific and engineering problems. LATA’s Chicago team focuses on information technology and systems integration with expertise in biometrics, security, GPS/GIS and applications to increase business efficiencies. The Chicago office works with local clients including the City of Chicago, O’Hare international airport, Cook County, Chicago Transit Authority, Metra heavy rail commuter system, the Chicago Housing Authority and others. The Chicago team also works with multiple public transportation and other agencies across the nation and is working on other security, access control and biometric time and attendance projects in the region.

“This is the system based on fusion technology that integrates facial recognition, voice recognition and behavioral recognition into a cohesive identification system.” said Pat Anderson, Department Manager and Manager of LATA’s Chicago Office.

Before the access control system was installed, LATA was using a hand reader with a keypad, which Anderson admits was invasive and a little time consuming for employees. Employees don’t even break a stride in walking toward the door and entering. The camera sees them, welcomes them and opens the door.

Xtralis Detection System Soars at Indian Airport Terminal

Xtralis Detection System Soars at Indian Airport Terminal

Editor / Provider: Xtralis | Updated: 11/18/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

Xtralis, a provider of solutions for detection of fire, gas and security threats, announced that its warning aspirating smoke detection (ASD) system has been deployed to protect business continuity at Delhi Airport Terminal 3.

The air transportation hub has the capacity to handle 34 million passengers annually. With eight levels 28 meters above the ground laid over four square kilometers, the terminal boasts more than 90 automated walkways and 78 aerobridges. It is rated as the eighth largest airport in the world and the largest public building constructed in India since Independence.

The system was specified for Delhi Airport Terminal 3 because it protecs large, open spaces where smoke will be diluted, an effect compounded by air-conditioning systems. “Xtralis solution is for early warning fire detection,” said Prabhakara Rao, CEO of Airport Development, GMR Group, the developer of Delhi Airport Terminal 3. “And because of the new terminal’s design with multiple levels, we knew the solution would meet our system design requirements.”

“Xtralis takes great pride in helping to protect the transportation hubs, and we’re pleased that the system was recognized as the best choice to protect the new terminal at Delhi Airport,” said Samir Samhouri, President and CEO of Xtralis.

Morpho Detection Upgrades Baggage Screening at HKIA

Morpho Detection Upgrades Baggage Screening at HKIA

Editor / Provider: Morpho Detection, explosive detection, baggage, airports, Hong Kong | Updated: 11/11/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

Morpho Detection, part of Morpho, Safran group’s security business, has been contracted to install four explosives detection systems (EDS) by Airport Authority Hong Kong (AAHK), the operator of Hong Kong International Airport.

The new installation of systems will replace the airport’s existing deployment of Morpho Detection’s scanners. Both models use computed tomography imaging technology. The EDS offers higher resolution on-screen images, allowing system operators to make smarter, safer and faster decisions. Cleared baggage can be sent on to its destination while potential threats, including homemade and improvised devices, can be readily identified for further inspection.

Hong Kong International Airport has been recognized for the quality of service delivered. Named the “World’s Best Airport” among facilities serving more than 40 million passengers annually for the past three years by Airports Council International, the airport has relied for years on Morpho Detection’s detection solutions to ensure passenger safety and cargo security.

SightLogix Video Verification Soars at Buffalo Airport

SightLogix Video Verification Soars at Buffalo Airport

Editor / Provider: SightLogix | Updated: 10/21/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

SightLogix, a supplier of automated outdoor video systems for area and perimeter security, announced Buffalo Niagara International Airport has selected SightLogix video intrusion detection system. The system will be installed by U&S Services, a Tonawanda, New York, system integrator. The design comprises SightSensor detection cameras for detecting and tracking intrusions over large areas and trackers which automatically steer Pelco PTZ cameras to follow targets, providing situational awareness over the airport's perimeter.

The SightLogix system's longer-range capabilities allowed U&S Services to exceed the automated detection area originally specified in the design. By reducing the number of poles, trenching and communication requirements, U&S Services was able to design a more accurate security system within the existing budget.

 

Busy Airport Evolves in Security Measures

Busy Airport Evolves in Security Measures

Editor / Provider: SUBMITTED BY CEM SYSTEMS | Updated: 10/15/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

Growing numbers of passengers and security concerns lead to the collaboration between China's Changsha Huanghua International Airport and CEM Systems.

The Changsha Huanghua International Airport in China underwent a security makeover, complete with a fully integrated IP-based security solution for access control, biometrics and surveillance monitoring. The airport chose the AC2000 system provided by CEM Systems (a Tyco International company), and Tyco Fire & Security China was the system integrator.

The airport handled approximately 11 million passengers in 2009 and is one of the 20 busiest airports in China. As the numbers continue to spike, security and safety become a higher priority. As part of a US$270- million expansion plan, the airport recently enhanced its facilities and required a high-security solution to secure passengers and assist airport operations.

Solution
This is where CEM Systems, part of Tyco Security Products, stepped in. “The AC2000 system has been used to secure airports around the world for more than 20 years,” said Andrew Fulton, Business Development Director. “CEM understands the dynamics of airports and has a range of hardware devices that are ideal for airport security.”

The AC2000 system using CEM's IP readers/controllers takes advantage of the existing Ethernet infrastructure and provides the airport with a fully integrated operational solution. CEM readers feature aviation door modes, such as “Passenger Mode” for segregating arriving and departing passengers and modes for enabling air bridges and check-in desks.

“We recommended the AC2000 security system to the airport authority as it features the latest IP technology,” said Amy Lee, Security Account Manager for China, Tyco Fire & Security. “In order to get the highest security, CEM S610f IP fingerprint readers with an internal database and a graphical LCD were installed at critical areas throughout the airport.”

Featuring a controller, IP card reader and biometric solution in one device, the S610f fingerprint reader controls access to restricted areas where an additional biometric layer of security is required. Fingerprint templates are captured on the access control enrollment station simultaneously with cardholders' details and images, providing the airport with a single biometric and access control software interface.

With an internal database for storing server data and transactions, the S610f reader provides offline biometric and card verification at all times. The S610f reader also features a graphical LCD so that informative access control messages, such as “Card Expiring,” “Bad Biometric” and “Access Denied,” can be displayed. Cardholders can then approach system administrators in the ID unit with the reason for denied entry, thus saving time in trying to diagnose the problem.

The airport also uses the visual imaging and pass production system (VIPPS) to capture and enroll personnel details, images, signatures and fingerprint templates. The VIPPS allows ID unit administrators to print permanent or temporary IDs that can be colorcoded — for example, different badge designs for contractors, visitors, cabin crew and ground staff — to assist visual verification of a person's access rights.

The alarm event display module is also used to interface AC2000 to the airport's third-party surveillance system. This utilizes one user-friendly platform from which security staff can centrally view information on all video and access control alarms and events that occur in the airport.

Future
With the airport's facilities expected to grow further in 2010, the AC2000 system can be easily expanded and developed as the airport's security requirements continue to evolve.

Aimetis Video Management Soars at Munich Airport

Aimetis Video Management Soars at Munich Airport

Editor / Provider: Aimetis | Updated: 10/14/2010 | Article type: Infrastructure

Aimetis, a provider of intelligent IP video management software announced that Munich Airport has expanded the use of Aimetis video surveillance to Terminal 2, bringing the total cameras under Aimetis management to 1,900.

Aimetis provides Munich Airport with a single platform to manage analog surveillance systems on an IP network and integrate the VMS into other systems on the network such as the command center and the burglary and fire alarm system. Aimetis' system is the core of the surveillance system and has been used in Terminal 1 of the Bavarian capital's airport since 2009.

During the past year, approximately 800 Bosch network cameras in Terminal 1 were equipped with Aimetis software. With the expansion being implemented at Terminal 2 to include legacy analog cameras with Axis Communication encoders, Aimetis software will manage more than 1,900 cameras, 1,000 I/O devices and 5,000 users in a single platform, all of which is handled by only six active and three redundant servers for system failover. In view of the airport's constant growth and expansion, it is expected that there will be more than 3,000 cameras installed in the future.

"For us, an aspect of integrating Terminal 2 into the surveillance system is the possibility to integrate it in a network platform and to use just one surveillance system for the entire airport," said Michael Fr?hlich, CCTV Project Manager at Munich Airport. "The Aimetis software has ensured smooth airport operations, helped prevent or clear up criminal activity and supply rescue teams with all the information necessary in special situations," said Michael Zaddach, CIO at Munich Airport.

In cooperation with prime contractor Alcatel-Lucent, which is responsible for system integration and overall project management, Aimetis is delivering a key solution for one of the CCTV projects in Germany.

"The Munich Airport had expectations in terms of performance and reliability for this critical component of its security system, and Aimetis is helping us meet those expectations, including the ability to upgrade individual cameras with video analysis algorithms tailored to its specific location," said Carsten Smago, Head of the Services Business at Alcatel-Lucent Germany.

"We are happy and proud to extend the use of Aimetis software at Munich Airport," said Marc Holtenhoff, CEO of Aimetis. "The project teams from Alcatel-Lucent, Munich Airport and Aimetis have worked hard to ensure the success of this project and improve the safety at the airport."

Piecing Together the PSIM Puzzle

Piecing Together the PSIM Puzzle

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 10/12/2010 | Article type: Tech Corner

Physical security information management (PSIM) promises to make life easier for security operators. Instead of managing systems separately, PSIM provides a converged platform, bringing the most relevant information to the fore while advising the best course of action. Operators can piece together the whole picture from many disparate systems. In the event of a fire, smoke detectors can sense the fire, cameras can offer video verification and the PSIM can list response measures for the operator to take. An integrated platform maximizes existing investments, combining multiple systems into one seamless interface. However, each provider has its own way of bringing multiple inputs into a cohesive whole, resulting in varying definitions of what true PSIM is.

Physical security information management (PSIM) is one of the hottest buzzwords in the industry. Sometimes referred to as “situational awareness” or “command and control,” more viable solutions show that convergence is now a real-life trend.

The benefits are clear for holistic management. Instead of tracking access control on one workstation, video on another and intrusion on a third machine, operators can have a bird's-eye view of all systems through PSIM. “Technologies such as video analytics and PSIM help automate video monitoring, filter out irrelevant information, and provide operators and guard forces with the data they need to make more intelligent decisions — typically referred to as ‘actionable data' in the language of IT; ‘situational knowledge' in the language of public safety; and ‘total domain awareness' in the language of homeland security,” said Aberdeen Group in a March 2010 study on video surveillance.

All the flowery terms mean one thing: Bringing the most important information to the operator 's attention. Instead of trying to watch 100 video feeds, control room staff can manage their time better and respond to issues faster. “With the same number of full-time equivalent staff , the topper formers in Aberdeen's study are able to support 3.3-times more cameras and 21-times more alerts requiring evaluation and action by guards or operators,” Aberdeen Group said.

PSIM does not replace human operators, but helps them make sense of multiple inputs more efficiently. “For example, an operator monitoring an unidentified object in the airport can simultaneously view pictures from multiple cameras, access video archives to trace the sequence of events leading to the placement of object and path it has taken, monitor the chemical identity signal from a robot explosive detector, and evaluate evacuation procedures from a crisis management tool,” said Bhaskar Ganguly, Global Marketing Director for Critical Infrastructure Protection, Automation and Control Solutions, Honeywell International.

PSIM, VMS, ACS
Management software such as VMS or access control software (ACS) keeps tabs on individual devices in a system, sometimes even integrating inputs from other subsystems like intrusion. However, such management platforms cannot integrate all — including elevators, climate control and lighting — and usually are proprietary. True PSIM is vendor-agnostic and should give operators a clear set of steps to follow, depending on what sort of emergency is taking place.

No universal definition exists for PSIM. “There are many unique features which clearly set a PSIM platform apart; most of which have been customer-driven to answer real business challenges and provide bottom line value,” said Matthew Kushner, President of the Americas for Computer Network Limited (CNL). “It's surprising how far some VMS and ACS companies are willing to stretch the description so as to add ‘PSIM' to their product labels.”

A converged management platform needs to do more than pull in feeds of alarm data, video images and card usage. “A true PSIM solution provides a much higher level of integration, providing a bidirectional interface with an auditable database management system,” Kushner said. “This level of integration is the only way to provide local sites with complete command and control, regional managers with overall situational awareness and senior management a dashboard view of how a security situation could impact their business's bottom line.”

System-specific management software has limited functionality. “There are many VMS and ACS platforms that offer integrated solutions in a box,” said Brandon Arcement, Manager of Global Security Technology, Building Efficiency, Johnson Controls. “They typically don't have the flexibility of a PSIM software, as engineers are frequently focused on priorities other than just third-party integrations, and they are somewhat constrained by the application and control logic code at the base of their software.”

As ACS and VMS address specific system needs, they are less complex compared to PSIM. “With an open PSIM, you can include almost everything,” said Holger Maier, Product Manager for Building Integration System, Bosch Security Systems. “On the other hand, some ACS solutions integrate just video and intrusion, but are much easier to install for VARs and system integrators.”

Genuine PSIM solutions correlate relevant data from more security systems better than any other type of software. “Because PSIM solutions are built to support a variety of systems and technologies, the operator display and flow of information deliver a much more holistic view of the environment,” said Larry Lien, VP of Product Management, Proximex. “It's not focused on just video or alarm information, but connects and correlates information from many various sensors and systems to give operators the most relevant data in order to respond better to incidents.”

System Integration
There are a number of ways to integrate systems into PSIM. Some PSIM providers team up with hardware manufacturers to support their solutions, while others work exclusively with software companies. This results in different degrees of integration in the final management platform.

There are three ways to integrate systems for PSIM. First, there is hardwired integration, Arcement said. Then there is standard protocol integration, involving protocols such as BACnet, Modbus, Lon or OPC.

A standardized OPC client in the PSIM communicates with any OPC server, making integration simple. “The subsystem can deliver any data from the connected detectors and cameras, so the PSIM can process and display this information,” Maier said. “On the other side, the PSIM can be programmed to control the many different connected subsystems from one common customized user interface.”

Finally, systems can be integrated with APIs or SDKs from the manufacturer, which is the most robust integration. “APIs expose more information than a standards document can and thus allow a developer to support more functionality in the integration,” Arcement said. “One drawback is that these integrations take time to schedule and develop, and they often need significant maintenance when subsystem versions change.”

The software approach usually pays off better than spending effort integrating with hardware. “The real play here is the integration of event information and controls; therefore, software integration is usually the way to go,” said John Moss, CEO of S2 Security.

SDKs enable system integrators and installers to create different user interfaces, such as for VMS, said Alf Chang, Senior Consultant for A&S magazines and a former installer. Most sensors are covered by standard protocols, so a Wiegand card reader will integrate with nearly all platforms.

However, the maintenance of multiple systems is complex. “If you try too much to optimize each piece of the system, the system can become quite fragile,” said Kevin Daly, CEO of Maxxess Systems. “Often, a looser integration does not bring with it as significant a penalty as you might think, since it can provide you with more flexibility if the system components change.”

Making New Friends
Integrating third-party software is not hard technically, but the manufacturer may not want to reveal all of its secrets. Thus, the PSIM software may be able to display the proprietary software, but cannot run all features natively, such as built-in analytics.

Integration with third-party systems is straightforward if the subsystems support industry standards. “ONVIF is a great example for such integration and will enable integration of not only network cameras but also serverbased analytics engines and access control going forward,” said Anand Mecheri, CMO of Siemens Building Technologies.

The PSIM platform's integration is as deep as system manufacturers provide through their SDKs and APIs. “The biggest obstacle is typically a multitude of different systems which give acceptable service at the local level, but due to the intentional proprietary nature of these systems, it's almost impossible to bring all of these systems together into a single system,” Kushner said. “Most security equipment manufacturers have made interoperability through a common GUI almost impossible.”

At a recent project, the user wanted to use Agent Vi analytics on Milestone Systems' and Cisco Systems' respective VMS systems. However, each system displayed the analytics so differently that additional manipulations were required for uniform operator response, Kushner said.

It is reasonable to expect most day-to-day functionality to be available in the PSIM, but usually not all features are transferred, Arcement said. It could be that the protocol or method of integration did not allow certain types of information to be transferred; the subsystem manufacturer chose not to expose that functionality through the shared API or the PSIM developer chose not to support a certain portion of the SDK.

Intergraph emphasizes emergency response, so only the most essential functions are integrated for operational needs. “Not everything needs to be integrated right away, if ever,” said Bob Scott, Executive Director of Security Solutions Strategy for Intergraph. “Our goal is to provide our customers with value by increasing their operational capability though integration and by providing a platform or framework that can grow and evolve with their needs.”

Real-World Technology
PSIM delivers real benefits, but is not for everyone. A small installation with four cameras does not require a command-and-control platform to manage an overwhelming number of inputs. In general, large projects facing higher risk, such as airports, nuclear power plants and hospitals, are more likely to benefit from using PSIM.

As construction has slowed down, has demand for PSIM gone down? Some experts believe so. “I expect the number of PSIM installations has been lower recently,” Chang said. “Most commercial high-rise buildings can use their own surveillance management software as an alternative to PSIM, at least for physical security installers.”

ADC, a subsidiary of Robert Bosch, thinks differently. “In Singapore's context, we've been seeing increasing prospects and tenders based on seamless integration,” said Daniel Ko k , Bus ine s s Deve l opment Manager for ADC Technologies International. “IT infrastructure serves as the backbone for communications of virtually all electronicsbased systems. As technology advances and is able to cater to a wider bandwidth at faster speed and reasonable cost, security products will naturally follow in tandem and leverage on the backbone.”

Other market players have also observed growth for PSIM. “We've seen the mature markets like North America and Europe use PSIM more frequently in existing facilities, while emerging markets like Asia and the Middle East have requested PSIM more frequently for greenfield construction projects,” Arcement said.

More users facing high risks have adopted PSIM. “These tend to be companies who are geographically dispersed or concerned with business continuity,” Ganguly said. “If the customer is building a new facility that he sees as being high security risk, he would likely invest in the latest technology to mitigate the risk he sees in a possible breach.”

PSIM is sometimes installed for efficient business management. “In some cases, customers have already built their primary security infrastructure and now want to use the available information productively and intelligently to earn returns,” Ganguly said. “This is possible only when a PSIM system is installed and used in day-to-day operations.”

The number of PSIM projects has increased significantly, particularly for existing buildings with disparate security and building subsystems that need to be incorporated into a new or additional installation, said Stephen Moody, Security Development Manager, ViS Security Solutions. Integrating multiple subsystems, however, requires significant resources and can face roadblocks for third-party equipment. In the next article, we examine what makes a PSIM solution good, along with cost considerations and challenges.

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