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Morpho: Better ID solutions through facial recognition technologies

Morpho: Better ID solutions through facial recognition technologies

Editor / Provider: Morpho(Safran) | Updated: 6/17/2014 | Article type: Security 50

The idea behind facial recognition is to identify a person or authenticate their identity based on the morphological traits of their face. Morpho , as one of the pioneers in this technology, has rendered advanced ID verification through facial recognition technologies.

Multiple security applications
Facial recognition is an increasingly powerful technology that is expanding its reach across a broad spectrum of security applications, starting with police forces and customs services, where it is used to check identities and search for known criminals. It is also used by armed forces and homeland security units to identify terrorists. But facial recognition is also rapidly extending its scope to more commercial arenas. For example, casinos use this technology to detect both known cheaters and addicted gamblers who have signed up for a self-exclusion program – not to mention VIP clients who expect special treatment. In stadiums, the system can recognize pre-identified violent fans before they take their seats, while department stores are automatically notified of arriving customers who have already been arrested for shoplifting. The other main applications for facial recognition systems include access control at high-value sites, ID checks for travelers and border control.

Facial recognition: a two-faced conundrum
The effectiveness of facial recognition technology depends on several key factors, starting with image quality, which in turn largely depends on how the facial biometrics are captured. According to Claude Bauzou, “We have to distinguish between cooperative and non-cooperative subjects. Cooperative subjects voluntarily allow us to capture their facial image and they follow instructions, like looking directly at the lens, not smiling, etc. Then there's non-cooperative capture for ID purposes, via surveillance cameras, photos or videos of events taken by witnesses using their smartphones, etc.”

Algorithms for identification
The second key performance factor for this biometric technology is the power of the algorithms that are used to determine similarities between facial photos, or matching. For the identification of non-cooperative subjects, matching also involves human input: the system operator has a list of “candidates”, sorted by ranked “similarity scores”. The operator thus makes a preliminary selection by looking at the person's profile (home address, criminal record, etc.), then makes a decision based on a visual comparison of the face photos.

Reliable databases
Facial recognition accuracy also depends on the size and quality of the databases used. To recognize a face, it is necessary to be able to compare it to something! The challenge is to establish matching points between the new image and the source image, in other words, photos of known persons. “The largest image databases in the United States – which only public authorities can access – are those that list holders of driver licenses, passports and other ID documents, not to mention photos of suspects taken during arrests,” explains Jim Albers. When police investigators are looking for a suspect, they may also check out photos on Facebook or other social networks, to compare biometric characteristics. There are also private databases, such as those developed by casinos.

A promising outlook
Still a relatively new technology, facial recognition has considerable headroom for improvement. For instance, these systems could add 3D sensors, recognition of moving faces, processing of images captured from above or the side, development of models to integrate aging, and much more. Another area of improvement is the addition of new functions. “In the coming years, systems based on facial recognition will combine official and commercial procedures”, says Jim Albers. “For instance, tomorrow's airport checkpoints such as MorphoPASS will not only check the traveler's identity and passport validity, but also their ticket, all in a single passage! Morpho's other proven technologies could be integrated in these checkpoints as well, especially our luggage scanning systems to detect explosives or narcotics.”

VIVOTEK IP solutions deployed in Melli Bank in Islamic world

VIVOTEK IP solutions deployed in Melli Bank in Islamic world

Editor / Provider: VIVOTEK | Updated: 6/10/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Melli Bank is among the largest banks in Islamic world. There are more than 200 branches in the province of Khorasan alone. As network and digital technology advanced over time, the System integrator of PFN Technology on this case, began to look into IP-based solutions for the bank‘s infrastructure. VIVOTEK IP8161 and IP8151 were chosen as the key solution device.

Background
Melli Bank is among the largest banks in Islamic world. There are more than 200 branches in the province of Khorasan alone. Prior to August 2010, the management adopted mostly analog cameras as their security solutions. As network and digital technology advanced over time, Kankash Niroo, the System integrator of PFN Technology on this case, began to look into IP-based solutions for the bank‘s infrastructure. VIVOTEK IP8161 and IP8151 were chosen as the key solution device.

Solutions
186 pieces of IP8151 cameras (with enclosure), known for excellent image quality and visibility under low-light conditions, were installed for outdoor surveillance. For indoor surveillance, the IP8151P remains favoured, particularly due to its ability to overcome different lighting conditions as well as noise disturbance. 162 IP8151P cameras were installed in areas where customers are hosted and seated. The IP8151P is equipped with WDR enhancement, which provides clear image in an extremely dark or bright environment. Other VIVOTEK cameras selected for indoor surveillance include the IP8161, in which 233 of them were installed for counters and teller areas. Meanwhile, the FD8161 was used for low-ceiling sections.

Mr. Taleb, sales manager of Kankash Niroo, suggested the use of PINHOLE CCTV cameras on ATMs. The footage is then converted digitally via VIVOTEK VS8102, which ends up transferred through network cables to the server. in order to record the videos, the servers are given either 8 or 12 terabyte memory with ST7501, VIVOTEK‘s 32-channel software program.

Customer's Feedback
Management of Melli Bank was so satisfied with VIVOTEK‘s camera performances that once a few branches implemented them, about 150 fellow branches followed. "We are all looking forward to upgrading our branches with VIVOTEK‘s cameras," said Darvishi, project manager of Melli Bank of Khorasan.

According to Mansour Farzaneh, president of PFN Technology "for a bank, facial recognition and currency differentiation are among the top priorities, and VIVOTEK‘s cameras chosen for this project definitely meet the requirements."PFN Technology also suggests the award-winning VIVOTEK FE8171V into the project. The FE8171V, launched in August 2011, is the company‘s latest, most-up-and-coming SUPREME product, equipped with a fisheye lens for 180° panoramic view (wall mount) or 360° surround view, assigned for Melli Bank‘s outdoor surveillance.

Wise buying mindset for access control in Middle East

Wise buying mindset for access control in Middle East

Editor / Provider: Jill Lai, a&s International | Updated: 4/25/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

Middle East buyers carry strong purchasing power. Compared to four to five years ago, Middle East buyers have become more aware of the general benefits that the new technologies can bring them. At the same time, they particularly prefer future proof security technologies that will bring them extra value to optimize their business operations and even law and policy enforcement. This kind of buying mindset becomes very obvious when they select access control products.

TIME-ATTENDANCE FEATURE IS A “MUST”
Access control products usually tend to be designed according to the local culture and lifestyles in a country. When buyers select access control products in the Middle East, the time-attendance feature is most frequently asked about and preferred because the government has clear rules on employee attendance. “It is important to have a localized approach here. We are able to customize the products according to the regional requirements and culture; for instance, the holidays in the Middle East are Fridays and Saturdays, which is different from other geographic regions. In the Middle East, the time-attendance feature is very important to end users, especially in commercial and governmental buildings solutions. End users really need the time-attendance function to enforce the government law and calculate penalties for unpunctual employees. Time-attendance features are available in different ways in our systems, and are part of the overall business reporting tools available in our access control systems. These include building space usage and occupancy calculation, people-flow measurement, entry and exit time of visitors, subcontractors, and employees. We are also developing a visitor management system to manage visitors using electronic devices. Meeting room reservation is also another newly added function,” said Tarek Ismail, Sales Director of Middle East at Tyco Security Products.

In the SMB sector, ZK Techhnology FZCO's time-attendance and access control system is popular especially in the Middle East region, especially in Saudi Arabia, Iran, the U.A.E., and Iraq. “We recently launched our latest iris and vein recognition systems, and IP video surveillance cameras with facial recognition. The camera can link with the access control system, after installing software, suitable for business buildings,” said Kiven Wu, Sales Manager of Middle East at ZK Technology FZCO.

TECH-SAVVY TECHNOLOGIES ARE PREFERRED
Due to the combination of higher purchasing power and the interest in innovative solutions, "the end users here are becoming more willing to upgrade from the standard mechanical locks to electromechanical locking systems which provide more convenience and have a more technological aspect to them. Electromechanical locks have gained more traction in the GCC than other Middle East countries," said Tarek Marawan, VP of Business Development, for Middle East at Assa Abloy Security Solutions.

Furthermore, in the Middle East, there are no set standards on locks and door hardware. Some countries such as Saudi Arabia prefer American standards (ANSI), while others prefer European standards (EN). So, there is a mixture of standards in the Middle East, depending on the country's history. “However, I would say it provides a good opportunity for a big organization such as Assa Abloy, because we have a diverse range of product lines which comply with all the different standards,” continued Marawan.

People, primarily in the GCC countries, have a high acceptance of new and savvy technologies, which accelerates the penetration of network technologies. Just like in the mature markets, the Middle East also started the adoption of NFC and identity management in certain verticals.

"From HID Global's perspective, there are several key trends for access control (in this region). Firstly, there is a growing paradigm shift from proprietary access control architectures to open and flexible solutions addressing customers business requirements for new products and technologies," said Harm Radstaak, MD of Identity & Access Management of EMEA at HID Global. "Another important trend is the increasing adoption of mobile access control, in stages, whereby smartphones will function similarly to that of a card transaction today."

OPTIMIZING BUSINESS OPERATIONS WITH INTEGRATION
Because of the high understanding toward advanced technologies and their benefits in this region, more and more end users are getting away from the traditional buying mindset, such as considering security applications or products only, and are starting to think about how security technologies can optimize their security processes and procedures and fit their security policies. "We are witnessing a rise in demand from organizations to provision a converged physical access control system (PACS) and IT identities on a single card (or smartphone) that can be used to open doors, log on to computers, and for other applications. Integrating physical access control with IT security will create a seamless user experience when securing doors, data, and the cloud. It will improve how organizations create, use and manage identities across many different applications," said Radstaak. "Migrating intelligence to the door will continue with further adoption of IP architectures and future capabilities of smartphones for access control."

Pierre Racz, President and CEO of Genetec also echoed, “Many customers approach us, initially, not just for security, but to get operational efficiency out of it too, such as in retail stores or even city wide surveillance. We discovered that access control has become a very important sensor to monitor daily business operations. In order to optimize their operations, end users mostly turn to a unified access control and video surveillance system. For example, some of our airport customers charge their employees for not bringing their badges and sometimes the fine is huge. That is because the government has imposed this specific rule on the airport. The airport would get fined without enforcing this rule.”

“In many cases, the employees who forget to bring their badges would ‘piggyback' on access granted to other employees. So, now, we are using the video with access control to monitor if an employee sneaks in with someone else. So, combining these two technologies help the end users to enforce the rule in a very cost-effective way.”

GREEN CONSTRUCTION AND BUILDING MANAGEMENT
New technologies, like green construction, are also driving the market to adopt more new technologies. John Davies, MD at TDSi commented on the changes for the past three years in this region. “We found that the customers want more and more integrated systems, which is not just integration of different elements of the security systems, such as intruder alarms, fire, video surveillance, and access control. More often, customers also want all these security systems to be integrated into a building management system, or back-office systems, like payroll systems and time-attendance systems. From an access control point of view, we can easily know where the people are and see how these people interact. Building management systems also want to interface with access control in order to provide better granular control of heating and ventilation control or lighting systems. Although the Middle East is full of energy, governments and corporations still care about the environment green technologies. We find that Europe has a great track record in developing green technologies, but Asian customers are early adopters of these green technologies; for instance, Hong Kong has been really developing the concept of smart buildings from four to five years ago. In Europe, people are very slow to adopt. However, here, buyers are so different. They really love new technologies and ideas as long as there is a convincing return on investment or cost benefit.”

FUTURE DEVELOPMENT
The access control sector is not like the video surveillance sector, which is strictly regulated by government rules. Instead, buyers' selection is mostly dependent on their preference toward specific standards and technologies. In general, thanks to the people's acceptance of new technologies and requirements toward efficient management and long-term investment, we can expect more and more advanced technologies, especially in access control, to be introduced to this region.

[GDSF Secutech 2014] Digitalcom shares experience in Thai Customs Dept.

[GDSF Secutech 2014] Digitalcom shares experience in Thai Customs Dept.

Editor / Provider: William Pao, a&s International | Updated: 4/18/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

Digitalcom, a participant in GDSF at Secutech 2014, shared its experience in helping the Thai Customs Department set up a state-of-the-art surveillance system aiming to strengthen border control.

The project began in 2008 and is now in its third phase. The main installation was done by the Communication Authority of Thailand, which rents the system to the customs agency on a yearly basis. Hardware and cameras were provided by Yip In Tsoi, and Digitalcom did the system configuration.

The main purpose of the project was to monitor activities at the borders and make sure that no trafficking of any kind took place. Border control gained importance especially after the Thai government raised its tobacco tax this year, an event that caused trafficking of cigarettes from neighboring countries to rise, said Suwich Chitkasemsuk, MD of Digitalcom.

The installation involved the deployment of over 200 recording servers and over 1,500 cameras. According to Chitkasemsuk, installation was made much easier thanks to Milestone's solution, which allowed Digitalcom workers to use Windows Remote Desktop and Management Client to complete installation and configuration, all at one central site.

To free up more bandwidth needed for high-quality video data, the multi-stream technology was adopted. Digitalcom uses MJPEG for recording videos from important cameras and MPEG-4, which requires lesser bandwidth, for viewing purposes, Chitkasemsuk said.

The company's solution also integrates with various existing technologies, such as facial recognition and analytics, to detect intrusion, reduce false alarms, and enhance responsiveness.

AirLive IVS Face Detection surveillance system for casinos

AirLive IVS Face Detection surveillance system for casinos

Editor / Provider: Sponsored by AirLive | Updated: 4/17/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Casino surveillance system requires the ability to respond rapidly to incidents at low levels of lighting, which is one of the most technical-demanding requirements for surveillance systems with diverse operational requirements.

Gaming video surveillance needs to focus on the activities at the gaming tables and slot machines in order to settle disputes, prevent and detect cheating and also to protect the casino and players from dishonest employees. Evidential-level image quality is crucial for bringing the criminal to court successfully.

Casino surveillance systems from AirLive's IVS Face Detection embedded in MD-3025-IVS and BU-3026-IVS (Intelligent Video Surveillance) provide accurate video analytics that can be used to detect faces of people in the monitored area. This function automatically detects and captures a person's face and store in the storage. AirLive's analytics surveillance systems are able to set up the system alerts, take a snap shoot or record a short video when a face is detected in the frame of the image.

Besides Face Detection, AirLive IVS IP Camera has other 5 built-in IVS analytics including 5 powerful intelligence functions – Face Recognition, Object Counting, Trip Zone, E-Fence, i–Motion — for various applications in public places such as airports, stadiums, border crossings, offices, shopping mall, and buildings.

Survey exposes surveillance myths created by CSI crime dramas

Survey exposes surveillance myths created by CSI crime dramas

Editor / Provider: Axis | Updated: 4/15/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Canadians are hooked on crime dramas, and some shows are so convincing that our perception of what forensic technology can do has been skewed – especially when it comes to video surveillance.

"There have been impressive strides in facial recognition analytics, but it is not as prevalent as TV producers would have you believe. The technology works best in controlled conditions”

According to a survey by Leger for Axis Communications, the global brand in network video surveillance, 68% of Canadians said they watch crime dramas like CSI, Criminal Minds, Castle and Law and Order. Of those surveyed, most believe image enhancement techniques and intelligent software are readily available to help law enforcement easily identify suspects. Yet nearly 75% of surveillance cameras sold worldwide today remain analog (IHS Research), which is why security video often shown on the evening news is grainy and of poor quality, making identification difficult.

Key findings of the survey include:
* 71% of Canadians think recorded surveillance footage can be enhanced in a lab using software.
* Most Canadians have very little idea how long surveillance video is generally stored, with 27% admitting they have no   idea and 26% believing video is stored indefinitely.
* Three-quarters of Canadians believe facial recognition software can easily pick individual faces out of a crowd for identification, with crime drama fans even more likely to believe this.

“When TV crime technicians produce an accurate photo of a suspect from the reflection off someone's sunglasses, it makes for good entertainment but it's not realistic,” said Bob Moore, country manager, Canada, Axis Communications. “IP camera innovations have improved image quality and image usability exponentially, but if police are dealing with low-resolution video common in the real world today, there is nothing that can be done to enhance the image.”

The surveillance industry is currently undergoing a shift from analog CCTV to IP video, with IP cameras expected to begin out-shipping their analog predecessors in 2017. This is because IP video offers much improved functionality closer to the technology shown on TV, including HDTV-quality video, ease-of-use, speed of forensic search, intelligent analytics and low-light recording in color.

Surveillance Cameras: Myths vs. Reality

Myth: Surveillance video quality can be enhanced in a lab using software.
Reality: “What you see is what you get,” said Moore. “If you don't start out with high resolution video, enlarging it will result in a bigger, blurrier, more pixelated image. Video clarity cannot be fixed after the fact. As a rule of thumb, an image must supply 80 pixels from ear to ear to ID a face.”

Myth: Surveillance video is stored indefinitely.
Reality: “In Canada, there are no legal guidelines regarding how long surveillance video is stored, but as a general rule 31 days is the average most video is stored before being overwritten. After all, it is data,” said Moore. “In practical terms, it's really an issue of storage and how much an organization has available to keep. Video that is pulled to be used as evidence in a case, however, could be kept indefinitely.”

Myth: Facial recognition software can pick someone out of a crowd.
Reality: “There have been impressive strides in facial recognition analytics, but it is not as prevalent as TV producers would have you believe. The technology works best in controlled conditions,” said Moore. “Some buildings employ facial recognition software to automatically open doors for authorized people, but the person must look directly into the camera and, most importantly, their faces must be stored on a database for comparison. This is much different than picking a random face out of a moving crowd.”

Myth: Most surveillance is monitored in real time.
Reality: “The opposite is actually true,” said Moore. “99% of security video is deleted without ever being seen. Of the video that is seen, only one percent of that is viewed live. Most security video is not monitored live by a person because of the expense involved. Thankfully innovations in IP video are moving video surveillance from a forensics-only tool to a proactive one.” “Today's IP cameras offer more flexibility and advantages than older analog models and hopefully provide real Canadian crime fighters with the images they need to do their jobs,” said Moore. “While it was good to see that 47% of Canadians do not believe crime dramas provide an accurate depiction of how security equipment is used, one-third still believe these myths to be true. With IP video, we're vastly ahead of the quality and ability of outdated analog CCTV, but haven't yet caught up to Hollywood.”

Morpho joins FIDO Alliance to revolutionize online authentication

Morpho joins FIDO Alliance to revolutionize online authentication

Editor / Provider: Morpho (Safran) | Updated: 4/15/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Morpho (Safran) has recently joined the FIDO (Fast IDentity Online) Alliance, an industry consortium delivering standards for simpler, stronger authentication during online transactions.

“As a leader in secure identity management, we are delighted to join the digital industry's most innovative players in revolutionizing online authentication.”

Members of the alliance commit to sharing technology and collaborating on the development of open specifications that enable FIDO-compliant authentication methods to be interoperable, more secure, private and easy to use. FIDO addresses the need to develop a viable alternative to passwords.

To create a secure online ecosystem, FIDO specifications support a wide range of authentication technologies, platforms and mobile devices. By joining the FIDO alliance, Morpho will bring its expertise in authentication technologies such as biometrics (fingerprint, iris and facial recognition), Near Field Communication, Trusted Platform Modules (TPM) and secure elements (SIM cards, smart cards, USB tokens), as well as in innovative mobile devices and secure e-service platforms.

As a member, Morpho will offer FIDO-compliant products enabling banks, online service providers and mobile network operators to provide more convenient and secure access to online services.

“Morpho will contribute to FIDO's vision of more secure and convenient online authentication for a broad range of identity and payment applications. We are delighted to welcome Morpho as a Sponsor member and look forward to drawing upon their expertise in biometrics and protecting identity data,” said Michael Barrett, president of the FIDO Alliance.

“As a leader in secure identity management, we are delighted to join the digital industry's most innovative players in revolutionizing online authentication,” stated Thomas Chenevier, Senior Vice President, Products and Innovation at Morpho. “Joining the FIDO Alliance is a natural move for Morpho at a time when we are expanding our e-service offering.”

IP based video surveillance enjoys high market penetration in Middle East

IP based video surveillance enjoys high market penetration in Middle East

Editor / Provider: Jill Lai, a&s International | Updated: 4/15/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

The video surveillance market is greatly influenced by government rules. HD and megapixel has become standard for video surveillance cameras and 180-day video storage is required for almost all market sectors. The Ministry of the Interior (MOI) also updates the rules every year. The government regulations usually include where the security cameras must be placed, several details about its specifications, and also, how to make sure they are able to produce good quality video. "In the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, it is important to make sure that your IP-based video surveillance system meets all legislation and governmental standards, which should be the key elements of business here," said Peter Biltsted, Director of MEA at Milestone Systems. According to an industry expert, some IP-based video systems might have the problem of losing images, which would cause the end users and systems integrators to get fined afterwards. Therefore, high reliability of IP-based video surveillance systems is required for this region.

HIGH ADOPTION OF IP-BASED VIDEO SURVEILLANCE
Due to regulations from the government, the trend of full IP-based video surveillance starts from the U.A.E. such as Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Qatar, and then spreads the rest of the Gulf countries. The IP-based video surveillance trend also leads to high adoption of some innovations in this region, such as multi-megapixel, low-lux, and intelligent video analytics.

In the Middle East, people usually want the best technologies. For surveillance, the standard would be around 2 to 3 megapixels with WDR, because of the strong sunlight. ANPR and facial recognition are also usually required for infrastructure projects.

In large facilities, such as stadiums, hotels, campuses, and city surveillance projects, end users look for a more cost-effective way to have better coverage over a large area. “Multi-megapixel cameras are proving their worth here. Using multi-megapixel (1,080p for example) cameras, end users receive a minimum resolution more than seven times better than standard definition (VGA) or analog cameras. Megapixel cameras provide detailed information for capturing license plates and faces, said Scott Schafer, Executive VP Sales, Marketing and Service at Arecont Vision. “We have examples of customers that use 75 cameras to cover an area that would have required about 2,000 analog or standard definition VGA cameras delivering 40 pixel-per-foot resolution, which is enough to identify faces in a crowd. In campus settings, we have used eight multi-megapixel panoramic cameras to replace 24 standard definition cameras and the new system delivered superior resolution at a lower price.”

Intelligent Video Adoption
The local requirement of up to 180-day storage for HD megapixel video in some cases drives the need for more intelligent management of data, especially in large-scale projects such as infrastructure. "To provide an efficient forensic search after events take place, and also meet the challenges of managing so many cameras and data in a large environment, there is a need for intelligent video. And since people here are quite open to new technologies, they are starting to use intelligent video analytics (IVA) for marketing and management purposes," said Hakan 畤yi?it, Regional Director of Middle East at Bosch Security Systems.

Intelligent video is commonly used for high-end retailers and some large retailers deploying 160 to 200 cameras for people counting and heat maps. "In some five-star hotels, it has become common to have people-counting features to see who gets inside of the hotel building, 360 fish-eye camera at main areas like lobby/restaurant, heat mapping to analyze customers flow, and missing-object analysis for the retail stores inside. Some hotels provide the live-streaming video online for marketing.

Samsung also provides such solutions for retail/commercial markets controlled by Samsung security management platform," said Ali Boussi, Regional Sales Manager at BASS/Samsung Techwin. Due to the demand for intelligent video in this region, “Kedacom launched its latest NVRs, with the latest video analytic technology to do smart searching and quick location of the event as soon as the alarm is triggered. Besides, Kadacom also has a complete solution of centralized chain-store management and HD video surveillance solutions for courts,” said Zhiqiang Liu, Marketing Director, Kedacom Technology.

IP for SMB
The small-to-medium business (SMB) sector is also adopting IP technologies, starting from the U.A.E. “I would say in the MEA market, especially in GCC countries, there is very high percentage of SMB market using IP. Even small retail shops — usually requiring six to eight cameras — still need to meet government requirements for megapixel resolution. The analog system can't reach that standard.

All the shops need to be approved by the government. If they are not satisfied with the evidence, they will ask you to shut down the shops or replace the system entirely. That's why convergence comes there. I would say, in the next two to three years, GCC countries will not allow video that does not supply a certain level of video quality,” said Biltsted.

“Even for small customers here, they want integration. They usually want access control to be integrated too. If they have 25 cameras in place, they also want a perimeter solution to be integrated with their systems," said Biltsted.

"What I also found in this region is people have more awareness about security and they use surveillance for more than just for security. They will use the surveillance video to check if the store is clean. So, customers would choose cameras with a corridor view. We also bundle it with our software," he continued.

COMPETITIVE IP-BASED VIDEO SURVEILLANCE MARKET
 IP-based video surveillance technologies have penetrated to different market sectors here. Intelligent video is commonly used in a five-star hotel and even the small shops want an integrated system for video surveillance and access control. The Middle East has become a competitive market for IP-based video surveillance technologies. To satisfy end users' desires for new technologies, more and more integrated solutions will be introduced to the market for different applications.

Morpho IAD: The power behind the iris

Morpho IAD: The power behind the iris

Editor / Provider: Morpho(Safran) | Updated: 3/12/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Although less well known, Iris recognition is a biometric technique as effective as fingerprints. The launch of the IAD (Iris At a Distance) solution, which can identify a person at a range of more than one meter in less than a second, gives Morpho a great start in this market.

A fully developed biometric
Morpho has been working on iris recognition for a number of years, and has contributed to creating the 2 iris databases: those used by the Abu Dhabi Police and the Aadhaar project in India. The 2 most recent NIST evaluations awarded number one ranking to the Morpho iris identification algorithm. This expertise has encouraged Morpho to develop its IAD solution. The product was launched in October 2013 at the Gitex tradeshow in Dubai.

Technological prowess
Previously, 2 types of sensor shared the market. ‘Twin' or proximity sensors that must be within 60 cm of the person scanned, and cameras that operate at a minimum distance of 2 meters. Morpho's IAD scans both irises and the face at a distance of between 0.8 and 1.2 meters in barely 1 second, compared with the 4-7 seconds required by the most powerful solutions prior to its launch. The IAD system has dedicated cameras for facial image acquisition. The aim of this arrangement is to record a real-time image of a person and his/her position in space. These data allow the iris image acquisition system to calculate the ideal moment to capture the image, enabling the entire operation to be completed within a second. As an upscale scanning system, IAD is intended primarily for very high traffic areas. It is very simple and convenient to use, because the only thing the user needs to do is to look at the sensor screen for a second. The addition of facial recognition, for which very large databases already exist, is an additional benefit.

Excellent sales prospects
Designed primarily for the border control market, IAD could easily be integrated into an e-gate or installed in a security checkpoint desk. The system could also be deployed in airports to limit access to particular zones by passenger profile (final destination or transfer). Lastly, pharmaceutical companies and hospitals are interested in this solution to simplify access control procedures for staff working in gloves and masks.

“IAD is designed to detect two types of fraud: the use of a contact lens to copy the iris pattern of another person, and the use of a product to dilate the pupil of the iris, making identification impossible.” Laurent Lambert, product manager, Morpho.

“Many of the Gulf States already have an iris biometrics database, which is the essential precondition for using the IAD solution to maximum advantage. This exceptionally precise technology is highly thought of here.” Georges Moukarzel, Business Development Director middle east at Morpho

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."

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