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Singapore holds the smart key to success

Singapore holds the smart key to success

Editor / Provider: Lisa Hsu, a&s Asia | Updated: 12/30/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

Singapore, one of the most innovative countries in Asia Pacific, is taking matters into its own hands. With the economy and political issues that have pushed the country to further employ automated systems, Singapore is at the forefront of smart technology.

Rated as one of the top places in the world to do business, Singapore is home to many multinational company regional headquarters. With an English-speaking environment and highly developed infrastructure, Singapore is an ideal country for companies to expand to other Southeast Asian nations. As a hub of the Southeast Asian region, the country is famous for a high level of technology adoption. In recent years, its trend migrates to smart and intelligent technologies in the Singaporean security industry. The foreign worker policy has further pushed Singapore's adoption of new technology to help reduce manpower and save cost on human monitoring due to the tight labor market. Both government and commercial projects are growing in recent years, employing additional use of smart technology. According to Rick Huang, Business Development Manager at Alstron, the government is looking at using cameras with suitable back-end VCA solutions to improve productivity to replace labor intensive jobs like traffic monitoring and illegal parking. Ken Lee Kim Keong, Director of KZTech explained, “there are already many analytical software companies entering the market, and projects releasing from both commercial and government sectors are putting VCA as part of the package.”

“In the low-end market, it is obvious that the customers are after box solutions, where packages offer hardware with software solutions. While in the high-end market, the end users are after value adding through application driven products (surveillance) where they have the freedom to choose applications for their video centric operation needs,” said Sunny Kong, Director of Sales for APAC at Milestone Systems.

A “smart” solution conceptually is a breakthrough for energy conservation, management, and monitoring in buildings and campuses through a mean of enhancing energy efficiency, data center reliability, comfort and analytics, according to Kenneth Tsang, Director of R&D and Technical Services, Video & Situation Intelligent Solutions for Verint Systems.

There are a number of promising projects rolling out in recent years using smart technology. They can be seen in various verticals, one of which is transportation. Recent projects include use of surveillance and custom software solutions to detect illegal parking in pickup areas along mass rapid transit (MRT) stations. Surveillance solutions with smart software are being implemented to detect speeding cars, and detect over height vehicles that are entering height restricted areas.

The transportation sector has also incorporated smart systems in projects as tourism continues to grow in Singapore due to the opening of Integrated Resorts to attract more visitors. Changi Airport has access control systems and hundreds of intelligent card readers by CEM Systems from Tyco Security Products implemented that support smartcards and fingerprint biometrics. An intelligent building security system was also deployed that is integrated with the Singapore Airlines Human Resources SAP system, an interface with the existing visitor system and digital video surveillance/DVR systems integration. This leads to opportunities for smart security solutions when Terminal 4 of Changi Airport finishes construction in 2017.

Smart Buildings
Demands for security products in smart buildings are likely to be in the aspects of full integration and automation, able to provide time efficient incident management, low maintenance cost, easy-to-use manageable systems, remotely controllable systems without distance limitations, efficient system have the ability to integrate with business continuity management systems. According to Masami Eguchi, GM for APAC at Panasonic System Communications, a lot of video surveillance projects are implementing video surveillance and recording with a high-end VMS system into a single platform.

However, combining intelligent solutions in buildings itself is not a new concept, but with most recent technologies that allow for more integrated solutions, smart buildings will in time be highly sophisticated and automated for the user's needs. For instance, data available for building facilities can be shared across relevant users within the organization for other analyses such as business processing, explained Stella Neo, GM for CSO-Singapore at Bosch Security Systems. “Customers are looking how to best maximize the usage of various systems in the building that contribute to the business, organization efficiency and productivity, e.g., maximize security, maximize communication, maximize safety.”

Opportunities in education are growing, with Singapore working with major educational institutions to reinforce its educational hub status using smart technology. Such technology can be seen in SimonsVoss Technologies' projects at Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), and Yale – National University of Singapore Campus and Hikvision's projects in the National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University.

Solutions used for resort projects incorporate smart technology to secure the premises. ST Electronics was awarded the Resort World Sentosa project, worth US$71.7 million, to provide an integrated security system, network infrastructure, and an intelligent car park system for the facility. CEM Systems from Tyco Security Products was awarded the $6.3 billion Marina Bay Resort project to implement 15,000 card holders, and more than 650 card readers. The project provided for the resort access control, alarm processing, and a photo badging system.

Smart security solutions in healthcare are expected to roll out due to a shrinking workforce and aging population. Smart card technology is used in hospitals for staff and visitors to have access to multiple doors, as well as tracking attendance at staff events or trainings. Regulated by the government's Ministry of Health, more projects are anticipated to launch, considering the government's spending in this sector, said Giridhari Ramamoorthy, Director of Sales and Business Development at Pacom Systems.

Singapore launched its first safe city test bed initiative last year to explore possibilities of deploying a city-wide integrated surveillance system. Technologies tested and developed in the project included analytics and sensor engines, facial recognition video analytics used in combination with location-aware analytics, and technology to authenticate video streams. Industry players collaborated with the government to develop possible solutions in the urban landscape with real-time data and scenarios through advanced monitoring and analytics. According to Jason P. Kurek, MD of Asia at SimonsVoss Technologies, this enabled the Singapore government to gain awareness of capabilities, solutions, and innovations from the research and development of private sector industry players. “By actively engaging industry players through the test bed platform, Singapore government shall be in a good position to leverage on them to develop innovative capabilities elevating safe city initiative to a greater height. With the government's strong support, it is therefore opined that safety and security industry shall become the next in-thing for Singapore,” said Joshua Kwai, Group CEO of JK Consultancy Holdings Group. With the initiative mandated and encouraged by the government, the safe city market in Singapore will have great potential. According to Tsang, “there will be a need to apply intelligent detection, real-time situation monitoring, and strategic analysis to help the city collect and analyze information faster, manage and respond to situations efficiently, and keep their citizens safe.”

For the future of the safe city initiative, new projects are continuing to roll out. Sensors that will monitor air and water quality, as well as public safety will be deployed at high traffic areas, and various proof of concepts have been completed.

Singapore Turns to Technology
As future projects for safe city are expected to roll out, Singapore is at the forefront as one of the world's top technology hubs. With tight labor markets and rising cost affecting the economy, many are motivated to relook at incorporating smarter and more innovative technologies to move away from a labor intensive security landscape. As the country's economic growth continues to improve, hopefully smart technology is the key Singapore needs to get back on track.

Chinese Players Entering the Market
The entry of China in the world market has triggered heated price competition in Singapore. Introducing products with cheap prices, the government has started incorporating Chinese products in projects due to price budgets. “China-made products have made a great leap into the low cost segment and are also starting moving into government projects,” said Masami Eguchi, GM for APAC at Panasonic System Communications.

Initially, Chinese products were deemed as unreliable and easily worn out, however over the years, the quality of some Chinese brands have improved, gaining approval from the Singapore government. According to Derek Yang, Asia Business Manager at Hikvision Digital Technology, Hikvision's growth rate achieved an exponential amount in sales revenue in Singapore last year, compared to the previous year.

However, it seems that Chinese products are more accepted for basic products, such as cameras and video surveillance systems. Patrick Lim, MD of Ademco Security Group, explained when it comes to more complex systems such as security management platforms and access control, there is still a strong preference for established global brands that can meet the government's quality and unique technical requirements. As Chinese products maintain its product improvement growth and provide adequate support, it will be likely that more and more people will start to use Chinese products due to the low cost.

Government vs. Commercial Sector
The security industry has grown in recent years, as Singapore is keen to maintain the country's position as one of the safest countries in the world. “This is evident in the island-wide installation of security cameras and systems in key areas such as train stations, transportation hubs, highways and roads, public housing estates, and even in low lying areas for flood monitoring,” explained Riki Nishimura, GM of Visual Security Solutions, Professional Solutions Company (PSAP) for APAC at Sony Electronics. In Singapore, both government and commercial projects are growing in recent years, with the government sector taking up a larger market share due to the large quantities required for projects.

The government sector has been the main driver for medium to large project and infrastructures, mainly focusing on surveillance, to ensure the safety of both old and new infrastructures, and to curb crime related incidents. “The government sector will be enhancing many public facilities and infrastructure that were long overdue,” said Patrick Lim, MD of Ademco Security Group. Whereas for the commercial sector, projects rolled out for office, retail, and residential space are suffering from slight excess due to the poor economy. “Both government and commercial sectors are developing in tandem and are entwined, however there are still certain structural and productivity changes that are painful for some sectors of the economy, and the successes of the private sector would be indicative of the success of the implemented policies of the government,” Jason P. Kurek, MD of Asia at SimonsVoss Technologies explained. For instance, big commercial projects such as the Integrated Resorts and Universal Studios in turn add growth to the government sector as well as the commercial sector.

Suprema's biometric access control system deployed by Pakistan's Karachi airport

Suprema's biometric access control system deployed by Pakistan's Karachi airport

Editor / Provider: Suprema | Updated: 12/22/2014 | Article type: Infrastructure

Customer Background
CAA is a public sector autonomous organization works under the Ministry of Defense of the Federal Government of Pakistan. CAA handles all kinds of civil aviation related activities including regulatory, air traffic services, infrastructure and commercial development of the airports. In response to recent international regulation and security requirements on transportation and aviation industry, Jinnah Airport, the busiest airport in Pakistan, planned to enhance its RF-card based access control to more sophisticated and convenient biometric system.

Jinnah airport is the nation's largest airport with annual capacity of 12 million passengers and 50 thousand flights. With its fast- growing traffic, the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (hereafter ‘CAA') required a more efficient & scalable solution that could meet the airport's growing operation while develop the highest level of security and safety for the staffs and travelers.

As CAA also involves commercial development and management of the airport, improving airport employees' management was another issue at their airports. As airport service is typical labor- intense industry, CAA required highly efficient & invulnerable biometric time attendance management system.

The Challenges
High level of security and safety were the highest priorities at Jinnah Airport. The access control system at Jinnah handles considerable size of facilities including 60 check-in counters, 12 gates, 12 air-bridges, two terminals with restricted back office areas.

The access control & time attendance system should be well integrated to the airport's existing surveillance and alarm systems and also to be inter-connected to enable real-time monitoring and staff management.

As for the access control, the system should feature fingerprint identification for high-level security area and also support RF card feature for contractors and special occasions. And it needed be flexible and open solution to keep pace with the airport's growing needs.

SUPREMA Solution
For Jinnah Airport's biometic access control system, Suprema provided over 120 units of BioStation and BioEntry Plus fingerprint systems for the implementation.

Suprema's BioStation™ fingerprint time attendance terminal can verify, record and transfer the sign-in/out records simultaneously over IP connection. The device also features user-friendly GUI hence operation managers and employees can easily adopt the device as their timesheet with simple instruction only. Then the work hour records from the BioStation™ can be directly transferred over IP connection to the payroll system at back office.

BioEntry Plus is a simpler biometrics access controller featuring multiple RF card option and IP connectivity. The device can directly control door and 3rd party devices to give customers significant benefits in cost and flexibility in system design.

Jinnah Airport's benefit were not only limited to enhanced level of security and safety. The solution also improved its operational efficiency in staffing by reducing its labor cost and internal processes.

Biometric authentication goes mobile

Biometric authentication goes mobile

Editor / Provider: Morpho (Safran) | Updated: 12/8/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Today, there are nearly 7 billion mobile subscribers worldwide, as estimated by the International Telecommunication Union. That is 95.5 percent of the world's population! And in this highly connected world, each and every individual mobile subscriber must be sure that personal data and identities are being protected. The awareness of the value of personal data is growing while solutions to manage usernames and passwords become more cumbersome and the use of biometric data to authenticate access will become more widely implemented.

Experience in identity management is needed
Here is where Morpho comes into play. This high-technology company is not only one of the top 3 SIM manufacturers, but also the global leader in biometric and identity management. It has proven its experience so far with 500 million identity documents (ID) and processes 1 million identity document authentication requests and up to 1 million biometric enrollments each day. Morpho's identity management solutions are used by governments and other organizations around the world to protect people, assets and communities. Morpho has more than 30 years of experience implementing and maintaining large Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS), civil and corporate solutions.

The next big driver for biometrics
Mobile phones as the all-in-one device suitable for every purpose are thought to be the next big driver for biometrics. Today's phones and tablets enable highly sensitive services, so securing the unique data of each individual person is a key challenge for the mobile world today and the basis for trust tomorrow. Our comprehensive telecommunications and security expertise allows us to offer new and efficient solutions for secure elements, securing data, transactions and identification for the whole mobile communications ecosystem. As mobile devices and smartphones continue to proliferate and provide users with powerful mobile, networked multimedia computing options, the need for security will become even greater – calling for the strongest security enabler: biometrics. Adding biometrics features such as fingerprints, iris and voice to mobile devices promises to help in a wide area, from website login and anti-counterfeiting, IDs and passports to financial transactions and healthcare processes and on to preventing unauthorized access to accounts and sensitive data.

Numerous use cases
Morpho enables the full mobile ID chain: It offers identity authentication and derivation* for public and private services, strong enrollment and Trusted Identity Service Management, including secure credentials provisioning and downloading and management of related security domains and applications. Morpho's solutions for mobile phones and tablets have many use cases. For Mobile Network Operators they can provide a vital solution at customer registration. As regulators increase their requirements for validating the identity of the new customer, “Know Your Customer” (KYC) becomes more vital. Morpho's solutions can provide a simple secure solution to this complex problem.

A perfect platform for mobility, versatility and data security
The new MorphoTablet™ is a particularly good example of how Morpho uses its expertise to produce innovative combinations of mobile devices and biometrics. It is an enterprise-class touch-sensitive device that adds the security of biometrics (fingerprint and face) and cryptographic functions to mobile operations – the perfect platform for mobility, versatility and data security, enabling the delivery of trusted services in any sector, anytime, anywhere. But Morpho can not only integrate biometric technology into its own devices, but also enable it in existing platforms. For example, Morpho's Software Development Kit (SDK) can enable new biometric capability to be supported by Android devices. Biometric data can be captured with the support of cameras and other capability the phone may have or coded and matched against data stored in an accessible database. Thanks to the SDK, Mobile Network Operators can chose if they would like to undertake the development by teams within the Mobile Network Operator or by Morpho on their behalf – of course ensuring that the security requirements and the correct brand implementation and usability required by the customer can be implemented.

Suprema fingerprint solution deployed by Venezuelan government to combat staple smuggling

Suprema fingerprint solution deployed by Venezuelan government to combat staple smuggling

Editor / Provider: Suprema | Updated: 12/4/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Suprema, one of the leading global providers of technology in biometrics and security, announced it would provide its fingerprint solution to the Venezuelan government for the purpose of identifying authorized customers at supermarkets and pharmacies.

The Venezuelan government has prepared a robust system and procedure to combat the nation's staple shortages and smuggling to Colombia. For this purpose, the government decided to enforce a mandatory fingerprint system to stop people from buying too much of a single item.

Thousands of Suprema BioMini fingerprint solutions, including BioMini Slim, have been ordered by the government thus far for supermarkets and pharmacies near the Colombian border, and the project is expected to grow nationwide next year, following the initial results.

According to Bioidentidad, leading the project as a local partner of Suprema in Venezuela, Suprema's BioMini products were selected since it was evaluated as the best solution, with the following features:
* High Quality Fingerprint Capture - FBI Certified (FBI PIV/FIPs 201 and FBI Mobile ID FAP20)
* LFD (Live Finger Detection) Technology
* IP65-rated High Endurance in Ambient Conditions

“This project is noteworthy because it is a unique and new application for fingerprint solutions in preventing crime beyond the ordinary purpose of identification, and it will be an excellent reference for other customers,” said Young S. Moon, Vice President of Suprema.

Suprema wins All-Over-IP Award as best product

Suprema wins All-Over-IP Award as best product

Editor / Provider: Suprema | Updated: 11/27/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Suprema, one of the leading global providers of technology in biometrics and security, has won an award for its fingerprint access control terminal, BioEntry W, at this year's All-Over-IP Expo in Moscow.

“We are very pleased to receive this prestigious award in the Russian marketplace, which has such potential for growth in the security business,” said Young S. Moon, Vice President of Suprema. “Russia and the CIS region are one of the most important targets of our global business if we consider its economy and size of population as an emerging market. Suprema will target this market even more aggressively as ‘Best Product' in global biometrics based security.”


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Morpho places first in NIST 2014 MINEX fingerprint benchmark

Morpho places first in NIST 2014 MINEX fingerprint benchmark

Editor / Provider: Morpho (Safran) | Updated: 11/20/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Morpho (Safran) announced that its fingerprint matching technology placed first in the ongoing Minutiae Interoperability Exchange Test (MINEX) sponsored by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)*.

Results published by NIST reveal that Morpho ranked first in all 3 major categories. All tests are done with fingerprint “templates” which are digital representations of fingerprint images created for matching and storage.

Over 30 companies submitted technology for NIST testing. Morpho achieved top performance in the following areas:
* First in fingerprint matching accuracy using Morpho templates and matching algorithms. Morpho's matching results are 60% higher than the next closest vendor.
* First in template interoperability in which Morpho templates out performed all other templates no matter which vendor's matcher was used. Morpho's template interoperability results are 10% higher than the next closest vendor.
* First in matcher interoperability, where Morpho's matcher out performed all other matchers no matter which vendor template was used. Morpho's matching interchangeability scored 44% better than the next closest vendor.

“The 2014 MINEX benchmark results confirm Morpho's leadership in the field of biometric identification,” observed Celeste Thomasson, CEO of the U.S. company MorphoTrak. “For government agencies tasked with ensuring security and safety, using superior technology helps avoid security lapses, missed identifications and other serious vulnerabilities for law enforcement, border control, access control, traveler safety, etc. The results of Morpho's continuing R&D investments are apparent in these tests and in our growing list of worldwide customers who choose security as their top priority.”

Interoperability among various vendors and deployed systems is key to the exchange of records, and accuracy in matching for meaningful identification. Morpho-encoded fingerprints provide the greatest number of accurate matches, under the broadest range of conditions.

*The NIST program's mandates are to measure and publish performance and interoperability of template and matching capabilities, and to establish compliance standards for template encoders and matchers for the U. S. Government's Personal Identity Verification (PIV) program. Test results for all compliant ongoing MINEX vendors are published on the NIST website. In this table, Morpho is represented as 4S.

HID Global securing enterprise cloud applications

HID Global securing enterprise cloud applications

Editor / Provider: Jordan Cullis, HID Global | Updated: 11/5/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Applications that reside in the cloud afford enterprises previously unavailable levels of agility, productivity and vital flexibility – all at a crucially lower cost than ever before. However, with many enterprises cloud deployments now successfully up and running, plus the integration of the Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) culture into the workplace, the complex issue of data security and access control have leapt to the fore. Unfortunately, more and more organizations are still falling short of sufficiently extending their ‘best practice' security policy to encompass their now sprawling corporate network.

With data now living on the wrong side of conventional internal defenses in cloud-based server farms, the ground has shifted and a one-size-fits-all approach to data protection is not sufficient. As such, it has become more critical than ever to hone in on the linchpin challenge of secure identity management. Traditionally, enterprises have focused on securing the network perimeter, and relied on static passwords to authenticate users internally, within the firewall. However, taking into account the multifarious nature of present-day threats – from Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs) to the internal risk the mass adoption of BYOD brings – it represents a considerable leap of faith to place complete trust in a singular perimeter defense. Moreover, the simple static password comes with its own challenges. For example, employees may lock themselves out of critical applications if they forget them or, more worryingly, they may reuse their passwords from personal web services for corporate applications.

Intrinsic to cloud and mobile working practice, and further complicating security, is the diversity of the user population. To date, much of the security discussion has focused on securing the cloud-platform, but as enterprises continue to move applications into the cloud and take advantage of the Software as a Service (SaaS) model, it is increasingly important that enterprises resolve the challenges around provisioning and revoking user identities across their cloud-based applications, while also delivering secure, frictionless user login to those applications. As such, enterprises need to have an adaptive authentication solution in place that not only serves to manage users – based on their behavior and risk profile – but also crucially addresses where sensitive data lives and considers the way in which user's access information.

Two-factor authentication
As a first step, enterprises should start by extending two-factor authentication measures beyond the brick and mortar locations of ‘the office' to also cover cloud-hosted data and apps. Best practice already requires using strong authentication to secure remote access to corporate networks – therefore, enterprises must extend two-factor authentication to also cover cloud-hosted data and apps. Two-factor authentication measures have typically been confined to physical devices like one-time password (OTP) tokens and display cards, but thanks to a variety of technological advancements these are being replaced by ‘soft tokens' that can be held directly on the user device such as a mobile phone or tablet, or alternatively as browser-based tokens. While OTPs have proved quite popular as an additional layer of security, users have found hardware OTPs and display cards for two-factor authentication to be inconvenient. As such, replacing the token with a soft token presents an obvious solution. These contactless OTPs operate in the same way as physical tokens, generating random passwords which cannot be re-used – and thus guessed.

Given that the user typically accesses the corporate cloud application from a web browser or application on a mobile device, a multi-factor solution such as token-less authentication with single sign-on begins by identifying the device in use. It does so by consulting the configurable device criteria that is pre-set by the organization, and then assigns a risk score to the specific transaction. The organization itself can therefore tailor the level of security based on the risk associated with specific types of transactions, and providing the device or transaction is verified as secure, the cloud application is enabled and the user begins their session. However, should the transaction not pass, the authentication solution can prompt users to further validate who they say they are by sending an SM, asking additional security questions or continuing authentication using a software token that is installed on a mobile device, reducing hardware and maintenance costs. This leap forward in technology provides greater security and better control of the cloud-based tools in use by employees, enabling organizations to take advantage of the substantial cost savings often associated with cloud technologies, without a bump in security costs to support it.

The Device in Use
Unsurprisingly, as BYOD continues to grow, many of these cloud-based applications are being accessed from personal devices, bringing additional challenges. When tackling the issue of the multitude of devices in use in the workplace, whether employee-owned or corporate-issued by the organization itself, implementing a secure ‘zoning' policy creates an encrypted zone contained inside a personal device, allowing corporate data to reside separately to the rest of the device in use. This serves to establish a clear partition between personal and business information. By clearly demarcating the data available, ‘zoning' data enables employees to securely and efficiently access the corporate information available through cloud applications without frustrating them or decreasing productivity through laborious authentication processes.

Ultimately, it is important for enterprises to adopt a layered approach to security, recognizing that no single authentication method is going to address the diverse requirements for multiple devices and scenarios in today's mobile enterprise. Fortunately, the latest technologies ensure enterprises can continue to leverage their preferred two-factor authentication credential anytime anywhere, even when the highest levels of identity assurance and security are required. For example, the enterprise could combine risk-based authentication techniques with standard two-factor authentication tokens to help eliminate the risk of token sharing. How does this work? It's simple really. The first time an employee registers their token for use, the authentication solution will take a fingerprint of the end-point device they are using. The next time the person uses their token for access, the authentication solution will conduct a check on the token and the end-point device and if both elements are validated it will allow access; if something is amiss the authentication solution can make a risk based decision to either allow access by asking for another authentication factor, such as an out of band SMS one time code, or deny access. This layered approach best addresses the evolving needs of corporate data protection and identity assurance.

                                                        - by Jordan Cullis, Head of Identity Assurance, APAC

Trends in airport security: meeting the challenges

Trends in airport security: meeting the challenges

Editor / Provider: Sponsored by Siemens Enterprise Security | Updated: 11/4/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

The challenges facing today's airport security decision makers become ever more complex, as additional processes traditionally outside of their scope of responsibility have to be considered. These include passenger flow management, higher capacity aircraft, differing passenger security classification criteria, legislative compliance and the increasing pressure of operational uptime and profitability. The security industry is responding to all of these challenges, and as it does, there are several discernible trends coming to light.

Trend 1: Use of intelligent, wide-area surveillance
The implementation of any comprehensive security policy usually involves a multi-layered approach with the first line of defense being the surrounding airport perimeter. There have recently been a number of highly publicized incidents at airports, which were initiated as a result of a perimeter security breach - both inadvertently and deliberately. Such incidents not only pose an immediate threat to operations as well as passenger and airport asset security and safety, but can damage an airport's reputation in today's competitive market and undermine trust and confidence of business partners and customers.

The current sophisticated solutions for effective perimeter security detection include, amongst others, long-range, thermal-imaging surveillance cameras, false alarm resilient presence and motion-detection sensors, as well as ground-radar detection and tracking. Once deployed, these external detection systems can be operated through intelligent management platforms to automatically qualify and identify unauthorized attempted access well beyond the airport boundary and contain a potential risk before it poses a threat to operations and assets.

The benefits associated with the live tracking of qualified objects, vehicles and people via video analytics have also assisted airport operators to effectively manage all ground activity in a typically busy and dynamic environment. All movement and activity is automatically mapped against planned and authorized routes with real time integration of other airport databases. This facilitates airport security operators to be alerted and react to extraordinary events and suspicious behavior aided by pre-defined and approved workflows. Today's large-scale surveillance solutions filter critical events from camera and other sensor input, graphically displaying results via a comprehensive digital map on a single screen. Integrated three-dimensional analytics determine particular object attributes, supporting operators in pre-qualified classification of all activity and incidents. Using intelligent policy zones and virtual barriers, these systems detect, track, and classify activity, enabling operators to see what is happening throughout the whole area in real time.

Trend 2: Protection of the apron
The airport apron, where aircraft are parked, loaded, unloaded and refueled, is an extremely high-risk and sensitive area. To counter the threat of unauthorized access, state-of-the-art video systems with intelligent algorithms are being implemented to track objects and persons, and to interpret and define routine aircraft servicing operations while parked within the apron area. These solutions facilitate the immediate detection of extraordinary activities and maintain a constant state of vigilance, ensuring the security of aircraft and associated assets.

Current solutions available to airport operators make use of surveillance cameras to create virtual barriers or zones, around fences, buildings or areas within the apron, that trigger automatic alerts when unauthorized activity occurs. Images from cameras covering the area are automatically displayed to the operator, tracking and classifying activity in real time. Operators simply view one graphical display of the entire apron area showing all the necessary information. When an incident occurs, the exact location is pinpointed and the fast and efficient deployment of security personnel or suitable resources facilitated.

Trend 3: Optimization of existing terminal infrastructure
The need for controlled and efficient transfer of passengers travelling to or arriving from destinations with differing security credentials within a common terminal area is a challenge facing many of today's airports. In Europe, for example, there is need for the measured, controlled and secure segregation of passengers travelling from Schengen* and Non-Schengen countries. Globally, many international airports face similar passenger segregation requirements when looking to process domestic and international passengers in their ever busier terminals.

In these situations, immigration and customs procedures are performed in segregated areas under particular conditions, but often use the same terminal infrastructure. Solutions are needed to eliminate the possibility of passengers or objects being transferred from one controlled zone to another. Unique measures are now being installed in many airports to facilitate the automated transit between only predefined and pre-approved areas. A major European airport, for example, is currently installing a solution to allow passengers to access existing common use elevators to travel between terminal levels with differing active security policies. When an elevator is called, the absence of passengers or objects is assured through detailed scanning of the elevator cabin by multiple surveillance and thermal imaging cameras, together with 3D motion detectors. The process is completed within seconds, ensuring the elevator is empty before setting off and no breach of security through the transfer of persons or objects is possible.

Trend 4: Measuring of passenger flow
Despite recent economic setbacks, air travel continues to grow globally. Code-sharing between carriers, the use of larger aircraft and the ‘hub and spoke' system offer tremendous efficiency gains to airlines, but have also resulted in increased passenger numbers being within the terminal at any one time.

The resulting formation of bottlenecks and queues is a key issue facing today's airports. Stringent security procedures compound the problem, necessitating passengers to arrive hours before boarding and restricting their movement within the terminal. Adequate numbers of staff must be in position to manage all corresponding processes and the expected facilities must also be available. Balancing this provision of optimum service against cost and the consequences of unexpected delays is a truly complex task.

The ability to measure and manage queues at all key points within the passenger flow path is a key element in optimizing airport operations. Intelligent solutions are now available to assist staff in tracking, managing and sharing information about passengers and their luggage. Technologies such as flow-monitoring and predictive analytics can enable airports to capture and access data in real-time, supporting them in making the most effective decisions. Examples of technology supporting airport queue and passenger flow optimization, whilst reducing operational costs, include the automated validation of boarding passes and automated staff scheduling and dynamic deployment of resources in response to real-time passenger activity. Utilizing accurate passenger flow data offers airports the opportunity to enhance operational efficiency, optimize terminal layouts, and to reconfigure retail areas and increase revenues as a result of a better understanding of passenger behavior. Real-time data of expected and actual waiting times is increasingly being provided to passengers and has been proven to reduce the potential for passenger frustration and dissatisfaction, in turn improving the airport's reputation and securing repeat business. Monitoring capabilities can be used to track assets such as wheelchairs and vehicles for passengers with reduced mobility, ensuring their availability when needed.

Trend 5: Biometric identification and verification
For a number of years, researchers have been developing highly secure authentication techniques that use the recognition of measurable biological characteristics for enhanced security and improved convenience.

There is an increasing demand from the airport sector for the more wide-spread use of biometric verification technology to compliment and increase the security of traditional access control and identification solutions. Unauthorized access tops the list of airport security threats according to a recent survey of airport security managers. The potential mis-use of staff and contractor ID badges to gain access to unauthorized areas within an airport requires a highly effective yet user-efficient means of providing additional security levels. As biometric solutions become ever more cost effective and reliable, their use is expected to increase. Several technologies such as fingerprint, face, iris and retina scanners for identity validation have been used for a number of years, with differing levels of success. Palm vein detection is among the latest technologies being introduced into the market, utilizing one of the most effective and widely accepted identification techniques, through the contactless and safe scanning of human vein patterns within the palm of the hand. The unique palm vein patterns of each human individual are extremely complex, and the position of the veins remains unchanged for life, ensuring identification is extremely reliable with even skin defects or superficial injuries not affecting the performance of the reader.

Verification readers use infrared technology to scan the blood vein patterns within seconds and typically validate the pre-stored characteristics of the registered user's card, ensuring the card is only used by the true owner.

Meeting the challenge with the right partner
These trends ably demonstrate that the security industry is responding to today's challenges and addressing the needs of airport operators. Within an airport however, certain security solutions can compromise the efficient flow of passenger and air traffic. It is therefore important that problems or threats are identified early and dealt with reliably, with systems working together to ensure an optimum level of reaction and response. Integrated solutions enhance security, increase efficiency and reliability while reducing airport operators' exposure to risk and improving the overall passenger experience. Command and control platforms from leading manufacturers are a critical part of the day-to-day running of an airport and provide a coordinated, timely and appropriate response to all security and safety incidents.

Only a limited number of security solution providers can offer a bespoke airport portfolio, the necessary knowledge, global reach and project experience required to meet the demands of today's airports. Fewer yet are fully able to deliver integrated airport projects, supporting clients through technical design and specification, project management, training and long term service and support.

Modern airport security is a complex and dynamic subject, but, with the support of the right security solution provider, a most effective solution is more accessible than ever.

(*The Schengen Area is a group of 26 European countries which have abolished passport and immigration controls at their common borders, utilizing a common Visa policy.)

                                                   - By Steve Batt, Market Manager Airports, Siemens Enterprise Security


Click here for more information about airport security solutions by Siemens Enterprise Security


Identity management solutions keep intruders at Bay

Identity management solutions keep intruders at Bay

Editor / Provider: William Pao, a&s International | Updated: 11/4/2014 | Article type: Tech Corner

Identity management has become an increasingly important method of protecting assets, data, and premises by organizations, many of which have thousands of workers on their payroll. Making matters worse, these workers include not only full-time employees but temp workers and contractors as well. Determining whether these people are who they say they are and allowing them access to critical areas or secure networks has become a major focus for end users, who can be aided by advanced technologies such as multifactor authentication.

Identity management is a growing sector. A recent Research and Markets report indicated that the industry stood at a size of US$5.1 billion in 2013 and is expected to hit $10.4 billion in 2018, translating into a compound annual growth rate of 15.1%. Growth is driven by strong demand from organizations seeking to protect premises and sensitive data from intruders. Being able to identify people accurately is critical, especially for large enterprises that maintain thousands, if not tens of thousands, of workers around the globe. Further, the roles assumed by workers have become more diverse. For enterprises nowadays, staff does not just include full-time employees but also part-time workers, temp workers, and contractors. The need to effectively manage these workers and grant them access to company premises or data has therefore spawned advanced management solutions. “The process of managing identities and authorizations should be straightforward and user-friendly in order to manage many different identities quickly, while at the same time decreasing the chance that human mistakes occur,” said Arjan Bouter, Head of Sales at Nedap Security Management. “If you use temporary staff to make the most of seasonal peaks, you set (the system) so they're only authorized to access your production facility for a specific period. When this period ends, their access rights are withdrawn automatically.”

Multifactor authentication
Multifactor authentication involves vetting one's identity based on two of the three factors: “what you know” (a password), “what you have” (a card or token), and “what you are” (biometrics). It has become an important identity management method, especially for access into critical areas. “Organizations with high security requirements such as financial institutions and government agencies tend to adopt multifactor authentication to grant access. For example, the Department of Defense in the U.S. has incorporated fingerprint biometrics and facial images into its common access card (CAC), which controls entry to DoD facilities and information systems,” said Jordan Cullis, Head of Identity Assurance for APAC at HID Global.

The need for multifactor authentication arises amid the sense that using one single factor is not sufficient to prove one's identity. “Single factor is normally an RFID token ‘what you have' factor. These are easily shared or lost, and they do not guarantee identity,” said Steve Bell, CTO for Security at Gallagher. “Adding a PIN does provide a much higher certainty of identity.”

Most experts agree that passwords are an ideal second factor that is relatively inexpensive and easy to deploy. “For instance, there are many readers that have a keypad built in, and they are wired in the same fashion as those without. In this way, the readers can use a passcode and smart card for dual authentication without the added installation cost of installing two separate readers,” said Jeremy Earles, Credentials Business Leader at Allegion. The third, and final, layer of security is biometrics, which identifies a person based on his or her biological attributes. “Biometrics is available with different ways, like fingerprints, finger veins, or facial recognition,” said Tom Su, Sales Manager at Hundure Technology.

While effective, concerns over biometrics continue to linger. One of the major issues is cost, which could be twice as much as a standard card reader. “Adding biometrics may additionally require a network connection to the reader, as biometrics templates are larger data packets. It will be more expensive,” Bell said.

There is also an inconvenience factor, especially for people in a hurry to get to work. Furthermore, “some people don't like to use biometric readers for personal hygiene reasons and feel reluctant to put their hands or fingers on something that everyone else has touched,” said Jerry Cordasco, CTO at AMAG Technology.

According to Bouter, eye identification — based on retina or iris recognition — offers the best accuracy and gives good identification results. “The better you understand the various benefits and shortcomings of a biometrics system, the better prepared you are when it comes to the implementation of that system,” he said.

Multifactor vs. Single-Factor
Choosing between single-factor and multifactor authentication is an act of balancing between cost, convenience, and the risk level of the end user organization.

“Many public sector organizations and banks need to be open to the public, while their employees have to be separated from this same public by a ‘Chinese wall' of heavy security. And, in the same organizations, behind this wall, employees have to be authorized for different areas or rooms. In these cases it can be worthwhile installing PIN or iris-scans to your access security,” said Bouter. “This doesn't really work in locations like hospitals or offices, where many people enter and leave the building frequently. In these situations, the security threat shouldn't be the only factor that determines access security; the type of organization and the system's users are equally important. If ease of entry is of greater value than security, then a PIN or biometric system simply doesn't work.”Ultimately, the number of factors to grant access to employees depends on the user's needs and requirements.

Physical and logical access integration
While identity management solutions can effectively control who can enter a physical premises, they can also control who should enter a company's network, where sensitive information is kept. And in the same way multifactor authentication is used to grant users access into a building, it can be used to authenticate users seeking to log on to the company's network.

“Each level of identity verification adds a further layer of protection. Seventy-two percent of network intrusions in 2013 exploited weak or stolen credentials. Strong authentication technology significantly strengthens the fabric of the layered security,” said Jennifer Dean, Identity and Access Marketing Communication Manager at Gemalto. Integrating both physical and logical access on a single device, be it a card or mobile phone, has become more common. There are many benefits, with ease of management being one of them. “You can terminate an employee, and someone could take their access to the building out. But if somebody forgets to take their access to the network out, they are still able to log into the network and cause damage,” Cordasco said. “It's just the simplicity for managing the top-level identity that draws people to physical and logical access integration.”

With near-field communication (NFC), authenticating users for physical and logical access via their mobile phones becomes a possibility. “If we see the adoption of NFC being the key to go forward, the future is such that for any company with NFC capability on their door latches, the central server that controls those can be connected to other servers. Once those connections are in place, your phone will allow you to open door at your company and log on to PC,” said Andy Kemshall, Co-Founder and Technical Director at SecurEnvoy. But NFC has yet to become a norm, due to several reasons. NFC-enabled phones are still a novelty, with Wired Magazine predicting that by 2016, only a quarter of Americans will have NFC smartphones. With this, companies may decide that investing in NFC-based access and identity management technologies is not worthwhile. Security also plays a role, especially with increasing prevalence in phone hacking. Pointing an NFC-enabled phone to a malicious NFC tag may allow hackers to take control of that phone, which nowadays contains lots of user information like social security number and credit card number.

Collaboration With IT
Since most integrators are more proficient at physical access, integrating physical and logical access requires cross-departmental communication and cooperation. “The integrator will have to collaborate with the customer's logical access team and the physical access team as they used to operate independently. Bringing all the parties together at the beginning of the project and communicating the project goals and its impact on team's funding are critical,” Dean said.

Peace of mind
Modern ID management solutions, supported with multifactor authentication, can effectively determine whether people are who they say they are. Access to company facility or network by those who are not supposed to can be prevented, and end users can take comfort in the fact that their important company assets are protected.

Networked security system for major hotel development in Turkey

Networked security system for major hotel development in Turkey

Editor / Provider: Bosch | Updated: 10/31/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Bosch Security Systems has delivered a networked security solution for one of Turkey's major hotel developments: the new Hilton complex in Bursa. It combines the 5-star Hilton Bursa Convention Center & Spa with the 3-star Hampton by Hilton Bursa. Located close to Bursa city center, historical heritage sites and the business district, the visually striking Hilton Bursa Convention Center and Spa offers splendid views of the majestic Ulu Mountain and is only a short distance from the Intercity Highway, linking the major cities of Ankara, Istanbul and Izmir.

The two hotels are located next to each other, but operated as two separate entities. However, the management required an integrated security system covering both Hotels and allowing central management and operations.

The 5-star hotel features 187 guest rooms, twelve meeting rooms, two ballrooms with capacities of 1,200 and 800 people respectively, a spa and wellness center and multiple restaurants. Hampton by Hilton Bursa offers 107 guest rooms, a fitness center, a restaurant and a fully equipped meeting hall.

To protect guests, employees and visitors of both hotels, Bosch partner Ateksis designed an integrated security solution with fire detection systems, access control, video surveillance and voice evacuation. All these systems are networked and centrally managed and operated via Bosch's Building Integration System (BIS). Next to the security systems, Bosch also delivered thermo technological equipment, such as three Buderus heating boilers and their control technology.

Ateksis implemented the Modular Fire Panel 5000 Series in both hotels, which can be operated independently but are managed as a single integrated solution. In public areas such as lobbies, meeting rooms and ballrooms, Bosch's series of invisible fire detectors were used to support the classy architecture. For the same reason, the integrator chose to use elegant dome cameras in these areas. In total, approximately 250 IP cameras were installed together with the Bosch Video Recording Manager as a distributed network video recorder solution. The cameras support intelligent video analysis to alert the operator whenever specific, pre-defined events occur. Private areas with limited access are secured by Bosch's AMC access control systems, using card readers for general purposes and fingerprint readers in high security areas such as the IT room.

In case of an emergency, the digital PRAESIDEO public address and evacuation system from Bosch can be used to deliver intelligible evacuation instructions. All 59 zones of the system, matching the zones of the fire alarm system in the building, can be reached individually by PRAESIDEO to ensure targeted addressing. In addition to the security solution, Ateksis also implemented a comprehensive Audio/Video system in the ballrooms and the conference center.

With the networked and integrated security solution covering both hotels, the operator was able to combine highest security standards with great operational efficiency. Using specific cameras and smoke detectors also allowed making the entire solution very inconspicuous, not disturbing the luxury ambience of the hotels.

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