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Security Design and Planning for Multi-purpose Buildings

Security Design and Planning for Multi-purpose Buildings

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 6/6/2012 | Article type: Hot Topics

Many markets are seeing a return of buildings that have multiple purposes – buildings that may include two or more different purposes, including residential spaces, retail stores, entertainment spaces, commercial offices, hotels and more. Many iconic buildings being built in last few years, especially in Asia, are mixed-use buildings. In Asia, mixed-use buildings help to make use of the limited space. Security plays a role in attracting potential tenants and visitors, and helping them assess the longevity of the buildings.

When there are multiple functions in one building with multiple stakeholders, building owners and building users want separation of use. Separation helps to keep crowds separated and allows security operations to be confined to each specific building use. All the while, operational security remains at the forefront of the design. For operational security, separation allows different units to flexibly transfer between threat scenarios. “Maybe just part of the building needs to move to high threat, and the rest of the building stays in low threat,” said Hayman. “To allow that kind of flexibility, you design things like the hotel, mall, office, to be physically separated from each other so that every access or transitional interface between those different areas are controlled; you lock them up basically.”

Private Versus Public
A large, multi-tenancy building has public areas, like retail malls or food and beverage areas. “The public areas are difficult because you can't really lock them down,” said Hayman. “They're designed to attract all sorts of people. You may have different risk depending on who your tenants are.”

“For a shopping mall, the tenants are more interested in not restricting customer traffic flow, and the concern would be greater for cctv, fire safety and crowd evacuation,” said Patrick Lim, Sales and Marketing Director for Ademco Far East (Ademco Security Group). The operational needs of each specific tenant type must be considered as priority.”

“In extreme environments,” continued Hayman, “you have the risk of crowds. There are people looking to cause major incidents; they may look at those areas to cause mass casualties as well.”

The building's command center will usually only monitor and manage systems in the public areas, such as lobbies, lift lobbies, inside lift capsules, parking lots, all main entrances and emergency exits and stairs, said Vincentius Liong, Sales and Marketing Director for Adyawinsa Ademco Security. “All of those security systems located at general public areas are already standardized and able to be centralized monitored and controlled. Security systems inside the premises of each tenant will be installed and monitored mostly by the tenant himself and/or centralized monitored by outsourced security monitoring station.”

If there are multiple security centers, SOPs can be used to coordinate between the two centers. “If there is more than one security center, generally we can write additional SOP for security management and coordination, what action during each type of alarm events, what communication media should be used and other necessary agreement, such as who will authorize to send police or security patrol to come to the site during triggered alarm and emergency,” said Liong.

In contrast, private areas are usually lower risk areas. “In private areas, you should have led security, access control barriers, security guards, creditation, perhaps ID passes,” said Hayman. “Since most of those people aren't allowed in, the people in private areas are tenants and building staff. You know who the people are, so a threat back there is less likely but not impossible.”

When tenants manage their own security systems, they retain more control over what happens in their space but also more liability. If anything happens in the commercial space, the building is not responsible for paying for services. However, tenant security systems are still tied onto the network so the building can supervise what is happening in tenant areas, said Adam Querker, VP of Engineering, Firetech Engineered Systems.

Interestingly, fire and life safety systems in private areas are usually still under the domain of the owner, as they are part of the building. However, classic coordination between fire and safety and access control must require more negotiation across tenants and building management as opposed to within one party.

Security Operations
“In high threat, operable bollards will allow you to keep vehicles at a point so that you can do some basic checks on vehicles before you allow them to drive in,” said Hayman. “In order to use that, you need to have bollards built into the property in the first place. In Mumbai, after the terrorist attacks, they have flimsy barriers that they bring out to try and stop vehicles, but they're not going to stop any noncompliant vehicles with these barriers. What you need to do is have a more robust set of measures built in.”

Design principles inside will give the proper space to increase security measures, if necessary. In some extreme cases, you may decide that you need to close off the retail mall and screen people coming in. “You see that in Shanghai sometimes, they plan for enough space to put in archways and x-rays, so that they screen people coming in,” said Hayman. “To screen incoming people, you need to find the right place to do it.”

A Hot Topic
Conflicts most often appear during integration of security systems with fire and life safety systems. Fire and life safety systems are always a priority, but fail safe doors can compromise security. What are some creative ways to minimize the impact on security?

Commonly, video surveillance can be used to monitor an area in the event of a fire alarm. “Carefully designed for high security areas and rooms,” said Liong, “displays can be preconfigured to pop-up displays in the control rooms and automatically start recording when fire alarms are triggered. Events are recorded for future review and investigation if necessary. With these preventive system actions, we can mitigate the potential risks in case of false alarms and sabotage.”

Instead of fail safe, doors can be programmed to fail secure. “For example in your data center, you don't want that to fail safe, so that everybody could come in during a fire scenario,” said Hayman. “That's just a different kind of programming; it's just looking one by one at what the problems might be, and then making sure you have a safety route or escape route for people caught as well. It's not difficult; it's just coordination.

“Doors can also be rigged with a delay and alarm detection system. “Typically, there's a push bar or break bar that opens emergency exits. A villain may try to get through that door or open it to allow support staff through. A delay in opening the exit may frustrate someone in a big hurry.”

In the case of a fire emergency, the integration of HVAC with fire will allow the air system to react appropriately to a fire. “HVAC is typically used to provide fresh and conditioned air into the space,” said Allan Rosario, Canada Sales Manager for Network Integration Solutions, Johnson Controls . “Under smoke evac and pressurization mode, HVAC may be used isolate floors during a fire/smoke condition. Typically floor above and floor below under positive pressure and fire/smoke floor under negative pressure.”

“Conflicts with other systems are common,” said Adam Querker, VP of Engineering, Firetech Engineered Systems. “When we say we need to shut these fans off, per code for smoke control, we have to control those fans directly, but a lot of them are VFDs (variable frequency drives), which you can't control directly because they go to an immediate controller. We're supposed to control these functions, but we don't know mechanical drawings or other specifications to know exactly what they're supplying. So part of our job is to coordinate with the mechanical contractor.”

Verint Stays Intelligence Driven

Verint Stays Intelligence Driven

Editor / Provider: Jill Lai, Staff Editor | Updated: 5/29/2012 | Article type: Security 50

The proliferation of IP and internet bandwidth has brought new technologies, applications and business models to the security industry. As one of the leaders of networked video security solutions, Verint provides comprehensive networked IP video portfolio to mitigate the possible threats in different market verticals along with strong service and technical support for system integrators to address problems and challenges for a variety of customer environments and installations. Leveraging cloud-based technology, Verint has started to forge partnerships with new and existing players to offer new products and services.

Verint Systems, ranked as the top 13 in 2011 Security 50, focuses on providing IP video intelligence solutions and value-added services. It has an extensive portfolio of enterprise intelligence solutions and security intelligence solutions. In the following, asmag.com interviewed Debjit Das, Vice President of Global Marketing, Verint Video Intelligence Solutions of Verint Systems to explore Verint's Security Intelligence Solutions and find out how Verint maintains its sustainable growth with its solutions portfolio and go-to-market strategies for the Asian markets.

Annual Sale Revenue and Market Breakdown
Das: If you look at Verint's global IP video product sales in 2011—IP cameras, encoders, NVRs, video and situation intelligence software, and analytics--it is about $138 million with an additional $207 million from communications and cyber intelligence solutions which is unique compared to other companies in both the security intelligence market as well as the physical security market.

If we break down the sales revenue by market region, we achieved some significant results in Americas, 53%, EMEA, 27% and APAC, 20%. APAC is definitely among one of the regions with the highest growth. With continuous focus on innovation and value, we not only aim to get the sales growth in some emerging markets, but capture more market share in our more mature regions.

As IP Video Intelligence Solutions is being highly adopted across various security markets, our performance acknowledges Verint as one of the leaders in IP video and security intelligence, and we are pleased with that. Many market research firms and analysts project high growth of IP video adoption in APAC - we get our growth from both wider adoption of IP video as well as expanding market shares. We are also focusing on several emerging Asian countries, such as India, South East Asia, Australia, and China, which are experiencing high growth and adoption of IP video solutions for security and surveillance.

Targeting Critical Infrastructure & New Business
Das: We sell our solutions/products to primarily system integrators and provide specific solutions for different market verticals – Retail, Banks and Financial Institutions, and Enterprise and Critical Infrastructure. In APAC, our primary focus is on critical Infrastructure--airports, sea ports, rail and subway-- public infrastructure for city surveillance, and law enforcement. In addition, we also serve customers in the retail, banking and finance, and enterprise verticals.

An interesting trend that we are seeing is interest from telecom providers to provide video intelligence – both security and business intelligence, as a value added service on top of their networks to their customer segments such as Retailers. They partner with us to create the value added service or application. Video analytics is also embedded in our video hardware solutions such as IP cameras, encoders and NVRs, that are internet and cloud enabled. The cloud market is not big right now. But about five years later, it will definitely attract more telecom providers or other system integrators.

Product Differentiation: PSIM, Business Intelligence and Surveillance Analytics
Das: Verint is a global leader in IP video intelligence solutions. When it comes to product differentiation, Verint has PSIM solutions, integrated with VMS software. Verint video management software supports ImmerVision Enables?, offering Verint customers a 360-degree viewing technology to complement their video security applications. We also have NVR and HVR solution, embedded with video management software as well.

Besides security intelligence, our IP video solutions provide business intelligence solutions that customers can use to capture and analyze shopper movement with people counting, queue management and retail traffic analytics. They are used for store performance management, workforce management and optimization, understanding and enhancing the customer experience, and improving marketing and merchandising effectiveness.

In the video surveillance analytics space, besides basic motion detection based analytics such as people loitering, flow control, etc. we also provide integration with cutting edge technologies such as license plate recognition.

Partnership with System Integrators to Achieve Success
Das: We rely on strong partnership with system integrators to achieve success together. We provide education and training to strengthen their awareness of the value and strength of our product portfolio, business strategies and understanding how IP video is important for their target market sectors. Verint has a high touch sales force and is able to provide universal services, technical support and advice to assist the system integrators during the installation and maintenance and co-work with them effectively in worldwide projects.

Open IP Video Platform
We provide an open IP video platform for our integrators. If our customers want other functions, we will look for new partnerships for integration. Other than that, we provide SDK and API which allow capable systems integrators and other manufacturers to build integrations with our solutions platforms.

Integrated Video and Audio Solutions for the Most Demanding Markets

Integrated Video and Audio Solutions for the Most Demanding Markets

Editor / Provider: Tevin Wang | Updated: 5/21/2012 | Article type: Hot Topics

- Law enforcement, banks and ATMs have a strong tendency to adopt integrated video/audio solutions
- The demand for the combination of CCTV and PA/paging is strong in central stations and railway stations.
- Police and law enforcement agencies show great interest in using audio analytics along with video surveillance to provide real-time information about gunfire and explosions.

There are two ways of using audio surveillance in an integrated solution. One is using audio inputs as an alarm or surveillance trigger. Another is using the audio data as evidence; in this case, it is highly important to save video data in synchronization with audio data.

Casinos
In the U.K., for instance, it is legal to record audio at casinos and such capability enables operators to hear the activity on gaming tables, which gives greater evidence in suspicious situations. Some network cameras with built-in microphones provide a basic video/audio solution. However, for those with greater audio demands, users find external microphones more suitable. Sometimes, locations of surveillance cameras are not ideal for audio capture and a close collaboration between video and audio surveillance providers are required. “Casinos would be an example where cameras are positioned to provide an overview while microphones are put into places such as gaming tables to pick up whispering,” said Johannes Rietschel, CEO of Barix.

Law Enforcement; Financial
Law enforcement, banks and ATMs have a strong tendency to adopt integrated video/audio solutions. Legislation there requires specific methods of sound analysis to accept a sound probe as proof in court,” Rietschel said. However, when using audio data as evidence in these verticals, it is important to check with local authorities as they may demand certain compression format and video/audio data synchronization. There are still needs for unprocessed audio, such as forensics and proofing applications.

Mass Transit
The use of a video/audio surveillance system in public not only serves to enhance security but also as to function as emergency call stations. “Listen-in technology usually uses two-way audio communications and we are seeing a continued adoption of two-way voice technologies,” said Thomas Hagh, VP of Products, Zenitel. “Although most of the time, a security system is designed such that audio from the camera end is audible for the guard, the demand for the combination of CCTV and PA/paging is strong in central stations and railway stations. The guard can fully take advantage of the CCTV and PA integration to check whether instruction for evacuation is followed by a crowd in case of emergency.”

In the past, the nature and focus of intercom and camera players were fragmented as intercom players focused on audio communication and camera players focused on video. Both types of companies are now offering integrated video/audio solutions.

Street Surveillance
Integrated video/audio surveillance systems are also deployed to monitor urban activity. For instance, police and law enforcement agencies show great interest in using audio analytics along with video surveillance to provide real-time information about gunfire and explosions. This will enable a more effective response to gun violence and illustrate a more complete picture of crime.

Wide-area acoustic sensors are paired with an audio analysis software that identifies the unique signature of gunshots, loud explosive sounds, screams, glass breaking, car alarms and graffiti sound, said Derek van der Vorst, CEO of Sound Intelligence. “Our technology incorporates a dynamic foreground/ background separation algorithm which automatically adapts during the day to the background noise level. Also, we have a large number of acoustical templates for different indoor and outdoor acoustic environments.”

Some audio analytic solutions providers have eagerly partnered with camera manufacturers or VMS providers as integrated video/audio systems. These can be a useful addition to a system's ability to detect and interpret events and emergency situations like detecting off-camera areas or detecting events regardless of lighting conditions. “Our core feature design is lightweight so that they can run at the edge of the network on devices like modern IP cameras,” said Christopher Mitchel, CEO, Audio Analytic. “By collaborating video/audio features, it is beneficial in a range of applications such as intrusion detection, aggression detection, car alarm detection or keyword detection.”

Health Care & Correctional Facilities
Patients with severe mental health problems are potentially more likely to be violent. When they become ill and need hospitalization, it is often the case that their capacity for decision making and living independently has broken down.

Such deployments allow staff to undertake routine observations safely as it is no longer necessary for staff to enter patient bedrooms in order to undertake observations. While CCTV cameras are currently used to manage violent situations, integrated video/audio solution, on the other hand, could also be used to gain a better clinical understanding of mental health problems.

Besides psychiatric hospitals, handling aggression and violence is also part of the job in prisons. Aggression detection is an effective audio feature for prison officers to keep a proactive eye on aggression and violence before the situation worsens, Vorst said. “90 percent of all incidents involving physical aggression are preceded by verbal aggression. Our solution registers the typical sound characteristics of human aggression, anger or fear. The ability to spot verbal aggression before it turns into a violent outbreak delivers valuable time to security personnel and enables timely intervention.”

What's Next in Video Recording and Storage?

What's Next in Video Recording and Storage?

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 5/18/2012 | Article type: Tech Corner

- Simplicity and cost-effectiveness are big selling points for NVRs.
- One possible solution of fluctuating bandwidth is auto streaming.
- A rise of hybrid systems will precede entire VSaaS and cloud systems.

How will current recording and storage solutions be affected by trends such as VSaaS and megapixel/HD cameras?

Stand-alone NVRs will continue to thrive in low-cost environments, such as independent retail stores and SMBs, said Jeff Whitney, VP of Marketing at Intransa. “Their main benefits are cost, simple functionality and setup. Preconfigured systems, especially those that include cameras and cabling, will continue to take up much of this unsophisticated market segment.”

In installations with larger channel numbers, NVRs and servers should aim to complement, not compete. Simplicity and cost-effectiveness are big selling points for NVRs. As NVRs continue to evolve to incorporate more channels, features and integration capability, Ricky Law, Sales Engineer at Ensec Solutions, believes that NVRs are in a good position to increase market share.

On the other hand, if servers find a way to simplify the installation, configuration, operation and maintenance process, they also have good growth potential. “Centralized, server-based systems, with external IP-SAN, will continue to grow through the end of the decade, because of increased scale, reduced project costs and simplified multisystem management capability,” Law said.

HD
Megapixel and HD cameras have increasingly significant implications for video recording and storage. “The trend toward higher resolution will continue to impact the storage market over the short-to-medium term,” said Sam Grinter, Market Analyst at IMS Research, in a prepared statement.

One big problem facing solution providers is to ensure quality, remote megapixel streaming. Fluctuating bandwidths may collapse the entire system, warned Kevin Shih, GM of FaceID. One possible solution is auto streaming, which adjusts the resolution and frame rate based on the amount of available bandwidth and the size of the monitoring window.

Improvements in processing technology will also help. “New Intel CPUs are embedding more graphical processing elements and will help increase overall performance, while reducing the costs,” said Florence Shih, GM of Thecus Technology. “Elements such as USB 3.0, HDMI or 10 Gigabits can be added much more easily.”

SSD
Solid-state drives (SSDs) are not commonplace in surveillance applications. More expensive but more dependable, they can be useful in specialized applications within video surveillance. Implications might include more efficient video analytics and video coding, said Lee Caswell, founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Pivot3.

SSDs can also be used in applications where the drives might not be in a secured, fixed location, such as military, railway and police, said Chris Williams, Director for Wavestore.

Cloud
Cloud-based computing and storage are already popular in the IT and home consumer markets, Whitney said. Due to the more conservative nature of security, IP-based video surveillance is moving at a slower pace, but cloud and VSaaS, nevertheless, are emerging as a formidable competitor against on-site storage options. “Globally, vendors are starting to introduce their own cloud-like remote monitoring services. Positioned as a service not unlike the fire and burglar alarm monitoring marketplace, they are extremely simple and low-cost for the user.”

The main barrier to large deployments of cloud and VSaaS is price. Monthly subscriptions currently cost between $5 and $30, depending on the level of service and the inclusion of hardware, according to IMS Research. “The current show stoppers are the cost of powerful WAN connections,” agreed Stephen Beckmann, Video Product Marketing Manager in EMEA, American Dynamics, (a Tyco Security Products company).”

Whitney expects that a rise of hybrid systems will precede entire VSaaS and cloud systems. For example, a simple, local appliance based on commodity server hardware can retain a small amount of video that is then fed into the cloud for central recording, retention and monitoring. “That reduces the complexity and cost of the local system, while centralizing costly security resources, such as storage and operational personal, at a central security operations center or IT data center,” Whitney said. To record and store right, there is definitely more than meets the eye.

Samsung to Promote Smart Security

Samsung to Promote Smart Security

Editor / Provider: Jill Lai | Updated: 5/15/2012 | Article type: Security 50

asmag.com interviewed Tim Biddulph, IP Product Manager, Samsung Techwin Europe about “Smart Security,” promoted at IFSEC 2012 and their road shows around the UK.

asmag.com: The purpose of “smart security” is to ease the difficulty of making the migration from analogue to IP. Could you provide some examples to demonstrate this idea?

Biddulph: Smart Security is a phrase which Samsung has given to a ‘philosophy' which recognises that until quite recently, Video over IP was only perceived as a solution for large projects but that we are now also increasingly seeing the technology utilised in small to medium sized installations. Despite this, for every installer or system integrator who is knowledgeable about network based security systems, there are probably still many more who do not yet know what questions to ask when they have a requirement to specify an IP network based solution. As a major stakeholder in the security industry, we feel it is essential that we share our knowledge and expertise in respect of IP network solutions and technologies with our existing and potential customers. Our Smart Security philosophy is therefore all about how customers, with our help, can upgrade from an analogue system to an IP and network based solution in the smartest way for their business.

asmag.com: For system integrators, what is the advantage of adopting Samsung IP products over other brands?

Biddulph: We now have a comprehensive range of IP devices from cameras to recorders and switches and can therefore offer a one-stop-shop for most projects, but it is not good enough just to have what we believe are ‘Best in Class' products. Customers also expect us to provide excellence pre and post sales support which, with the co-operation from our network of distributors, we are determined to provide.

For installers and system integrators, the advantage of working with Samsung is that we are solution ‘agnostic'. Perhaps this is not totally accurate, as we do firmly believe that a very high percentage of video surveillance systems in the future will be IP network based, but we are in a strong position to be objective when offering advice on the best technology to be used for a specific project. Our product catalogue now provides customers with a choice that includes a comprehensive and competitively priced range of analogue cameras, DVRs and monitors, a complete end-to-end IP solutions range, license-free viewing and recording software and an impressive line-up of high definition megapixel cameras. ‘Hybrid' options include encoders, which provide a cost effective and easy to implement method of adding analogue cameras to an IP/network based video surveillance system, and HD-SDI cameras which allow the transmission of uncompressed and non-packetized Full HD (1080P) video over analogue cabling.

asmag.com: I have noticed that the slogan of “smart security” is only promoted in Europe, especially the UK. Is this true?

Biddulph: The Smart Security philosophy is being promoted throughout Europe. The UK however has been among one of the slowest countries in Europe to embrace the opportunities offered by IP network based video surveillance systems. This is to some degree understandable because the UK has such a large number of existing analogue systems but it is for this reason that the Samsung's UK sales team are currently conducting a series Smart Security Days with the objective of taking the mystery out of installing an IP and network solution. By doing so, we can demonstrate to customers that with the correct advice and guidance, they need not have any fear of embracing what is a truly exciting technology which offers so many benefits, not the least of which is the opportunity to gain maximum advantage from the latest HD megapixel cameras.

asmag.com: Samsung have been the market leader of analogue security equipments. How does Samsung strengthen its capability in IP technology especially in Europe, where many leading IP video solution providers are located?

Biddulph: Samsung has been acknowledged by independent research companies as one of the top three European security brands and although until recently our strength has predominantly been with analogue technology, we now also have a comprehensive range of IP and network products.

One of the things we have done recently to help our customers in Europe and build on the trust they have in the Samsung brand is to accelerate our programme to integrate our cameras, DVRs and NVRs with video management software offered by leading independent software vendors (ISVs). Axxon, Aimetis, Digifort, Griffid, Ipronet, Exacq, Genetec, ISS, Milestone, Mirasys, ONssi and Seetec are now among the list of manufacturers that Samsung has been working with because of their ability to offer ‘open' software specifically designed to facilitate the integration of equipment and systems from different manufacturers. This is to provide customers with the flexibility to choose the perfect combination of security products to match their specific requirements. We recognise that in a tough economic climate, we must ensure that customers achieve the full benefit from their investment in a security system. This means providing customers with the option for Samsung products to be controlled and monitored alongside equipment produced by other manufacturers. Working closely with ISVs is very much a part of our Smart Security philosophy which is primarily about making it easy for customers who are looking for a gradual transition from an existing analogue system to a full IP network based surveillance solution.

NSR Continues to Transform Integrated Systems

NSR Continues to Transform Integrated Systems

Editor / Provider: ANSON TECHNOLOGY | Updated: 5/16/2012 | Article type: China Corner

Anson continues to revolutionize the security industry with the NSR bringing a new meaning to security-centric integrated system.

The Network security recorder (NSR) is an embedded solution which integrates video, access control, intrusion alarms and intercoms. This stand-alone platform allows users to manage all security devices just through this platform alone. Developed by Anson, this all- in-one system also allows users to manage and control the system via LAN or WAN. Multiple NSRs can be interconnected Network Security Management (NSM) software.

The product supports eight-channel video and eight-channel alarm, four-group reader and lock inputs, as well as eight-channel door-contact inputs. The device can record D1/ CIF images with the use of H.264 / MPEG-4. With the unified functions of DVR, access controller and alarm panel, NSR provides a new integrated product experience for users.

Time Management
Time management is a key advantage of the NSR. With traditional solution, different security devices will have their own timing and processing, which brings difficulty and complexity. This problem can be easily solved by NSR as all functions are integrated into one system which creates a more efficient and stable system with consistency

NSR Vertical Markets
NSR can be applied for different vertical market due to its versatility. From the access front, NSR can manage card holder attendance sufficiently when combined with NSM. It supports multiple day attendance and three work-shifts. This solution can be applied to the retail sector and schools where monitoring attendance and accumulating statistics is compulsory

With integrated video monitoring, NSR is particularly suitable for correctional facilities, which can also be incorporated with access control to monitor and record those entering and leaving the premises. In addition, NSR supports four to eight cameras, which delivers real-time video at 25-30 fps. NSR can effectively replace the function of DVR as it can record footage and allow play back when required. These features are applicable for the banking, especially for ATM machines where recording and storage is vital.

Integration and Functions
This revolutionary system differs from traditional software integration, in that with NSR’s standard connector, the system can connect to DVRs, NVRs, access control systems, video door phones, alarms and other security devices. Should any one device fail the system will not be affected.

For small security projects, one NSR is sufficient to handle one set area. Larger projects will require several NSRs in order to cover different areas. As an innovative and revolutionary device which integrates all security equipments through one platform, NSR can create a more stable system with lower costs

The Future Outlook of Security — Art and Technology Foundation

The Future Outlook of Security — Art and Technology Foundation

Editor / Provider: SUNELL | Updated: 5/30/2012 | Article type: China Corner

Stemmed from IT industry, user's experience of IT industry refers to the attention to the using habit and personal emotion when using the products, which is rarely valued in security industry. Since the thresholds for the technology have been brought down, nearly all the products are able to meet the basic standard, thus the decisive factor for purchasing will be a good user's experience.

The tremendous development of technology pushes security from simple imitations to further exploitation. For seeking the continuous growth, what should the manufacturers do since they are no more just copycats. Readers may draw some lessons from the words of Ann Wu, Vice President of Sunell, who made a speech about the combination of art and technology in 2012 CEO Forum.

Since the hardware is reaching maturity, especially the development of chip and hardware, this would reduce the phenomenon of monopoly. Most of the manufacturers equally match in the hardware, so the next step for security players is to make the detailed exploitation to optimize the software structure. With the rise of the mobile platform, the connection between security and IT will beyond doubt be increased. In the light of the strong demand and talented personnel of IP, it's reasonable to introduce some concepts of IT in order to pave the way for security.

Inevitably, the manufactures tend to demand all kinds of function exploitation, the overall structure and integration could be ignored by simply meeting the market niche. It seems to have satisfied the needs of end-users within a short period of time, but the inconsistence will become a hidden trouble in the long-term development.

Going Deep into User's Experience
Stemmed from IT industry, the concept of IT industry refers to the attention to the using habit and personal emotion when using the products, which is rarely valued in security industry. Since the thresholds for the technology have been brought down, nearly all the products are able to meet the basic standard, thus the decisive factor for purchasing will be a good user's experience.

Designers must stand in user's shoes for enhancing the user's experience. As some operation systems of computers like DOS, Windows, Linux, UNIX, every system can satisfy the technical demands from users, it depends on which one can take better care of the user's habit.

Introduction of Fashion
Most of the security companies are designing their product with an ordinary standard, They seldom pay attention to the outward appearance or how to make the product more fashionable. Though the aesthetic feeling seems to be profound for user's experience, the ultimate purpose is to achieve a pleasing life.

It is believed that the exterior design of security products will become an important factor for the end-users to choose or not, that is similar to the mobile phone industry, taking all functions into consideration, the fashionable iphone is the winner.

For an organic industry chain, each part plays its role to form an alliance that draws on collective wisdom and absorb all useful ideas; as a result, the end-users can gain the more valuable product and service.

In cooperating with different partners, more attention is put on the open software platform. There are many platforms in China developed by domestic manufacturers which can only be linked to their own video camera and NVR in order to promote the brand. Nevertheless, it's beneficial for the expansion of the company as well as the long-term development of security industry.

Culture Merger
From 2010 until now, an evident trend of security industry is the constant merger between different companies, from the point of capital operation, it's a commercial mode and natural process.

However, the business philosophy and culture should be taken into account, especially the compatibility of R&D. For the company concept, more precisely, is fostered step by step, unlike a product, which can be made by assembly line. The compatibility, It is similar to the interpersonal relationship to some degree, long-term benefit can be produced only when two different culture fit together in a coherent framework.

From a whole, security industry is relatively closed; some new technology has been applied in IT industry for a couple of years. When surveillance steps into IP, more IT personnel begin to form an increasingly closer relationship with security. The deep user experience and some fashion concepts will be the irreversible trend of the future development of security.

The Future of Biometrics

The Future of Biometrics

Editor / Provider: Donna Chan | Updated: 5/20/2012 | Article type: China Corner

The increasing popularity and application of biometric identification is becoming common practice. According to Marketresearch.com research reports, the biometrics market is expected to increase from US$4,217.2 million in 2010 to an estimated $11,229.3 million in 2015. The growing concerns of terrorism and safety have led to the strengthening of national security becoming a top priority, which has ultimately led to the growth of the biometrics market. a&s International China Best Buys interviewed several suppliers to give some standpoints from Chinese suppliers.

Fingerprint Continues to Dominate the Market
Despite being the most mature form of biometrics, fingerprint remains the most popular. The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) is an estimated 19% since 2010 to 2015. The application of automated fingerprint identification system (AFIS) in national ID's and civil identification is the main reason for the growth of the market. The AFIS market continues to generate the highest revenue of $1,372.4 million from 2010 and is expected to reach $3,283.7 million by 2015.

In the past conventional security systems where knowledge-based methods or token-based methods were deployed often proved to be problematic, forgetting a password or the loss of a card can lead to hacking, fraud and duplication of information. This is where biometric advantages lay, due to the uniqueness of physical characteristics such as the fingerprint where no two fingerprints are known to be identical and there is no need for cards or passwords. AFIS can often be seen in access control and for monitoring attendance due to its simplicity and effectiveness.

The increasing use and maturity of fingerprint identification have left end-users questioning what breakthrough technology or products can be expected for this coming year. “In 2012, there will be more breakthroughs in fingerprint identification technology, such as in-depth integration with other technology,” said Telan Lee, General Manager at Feptel. “Now that we have realized optical-digitalization technology in our products, we will continue to develop this and integrate with MiFare.”

As mentioned above, the fingerprint identification technology is already mature and the trend amongst manufacturers seems to be heading towards integration of technology. “We are already in the process of conducting a research and development project which will incorporate the different forms of biometric technology integration,” stated Rufus Wang, CEO of Shenzhen Probuck Technologies. Other manufacturers are more focused on the integration of biometrics with one form of technology. “Presently, our fingerprint identification products are integrated with Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and this is currently our primary focus,” said Michael Liu, Manager of Foreign Trade at Sebury Technology.

Is Facial Recognition the Upcoming Trend?
The gradual maturity of AFIS has led the way for the new upcoming facial recognition trend, the facial recognition market has an estimated CAGR of 24.2% from 2010 to 2015. Facial recognition technology has developed steadily over the past few years, with the emergence of new technology and products which has made this more appealing for the market. “The use of facial recognition will become more widespread and the number of companies involved in the facial recognition industry will be on the rise,” said Eric Lee, Director of Marketing and Sales at Hanvon Technology.

“What makes facial recognition attractive to users is that its non-contact, safe and hygienic in comparison to fingerprints it is a less passive method, therefore the popularity of facial recognition can be seen in the increased usage in the recording of attendance,” said Wang. However, Wang points out that facial recognition, although, can be considered a new form of identification and without a doubt its technology is becoming more advanced, further observations are still required in the market.

Invasion of privacy remains a concern with face recognition, but China's manufacturers do not agree with this. “Strictly speaking, facial recognition is similar to that of AFIS,” said Wang. “Both require the extraction of characteristics which are transformed into encryption for processing and identification. Therefore, duplication and inappropriate use should not be a concern.”

Eric Lee further develops this point stating that facial recognition should be ubiquitous, the problems surrounding safety in society is a major consideration, society should be more aware of safety, further information and guidance is required for the market.

Despite being hailed as the new technology of biometric recognition, the development of facial recognition is not as quick compared to AFIS, it will remain in the high-level market, according to Telan Lee. Liu claims its development is due to the advancement of the economy, but it will not become the main trend or replace other technology such as RFID. “Another point to consider is each product and its technology have its distinguished features and application limitations,” said Wang.

Iris Recognition for the High-End Market
The iris recognition market is predicted to increase with a CAGR of 27.5% from 2010 to 2015. In biometrics, iris recognition is perhaps considered the most accurate as the use of mathematical pattern recognition techniques are used to identify an individual. According to Eric Lee, as a non-contact form of biometric recognition the future development of iris recognition is bright, particularly once imaging technology advances.

The key advantage with this technology is its extreme resistance to false matches due to the uniqueness of the iris, individuals who are genetically identical retain independent iris textures. The iris is also a well protected organ, unlike fingerprints which become difficult to identify with time due to daily wear and tear.

A major consideration with iris recognition is costs, the cost of an iris scanner is much higher in comparison with other forms of biometrics recognition and token based or knowledge based methods. “Iris recognition will continue to appeal to high-end markets or specific projects and in the short-term this is not going to change,” said Wang. Therefore, this would suggest this technology is not particularly suited for mass application and does not have cost advantages for the mass market. “On the contrary, once technology develops and becomes more advanced costs will decrease,” said Liu.

Looking into the Future
The growth of the biometrics market has created fierce competition between manufacturers which is unavoidable. The appearance of pricing wars and “me-too” products are becoming an issue within the industry as competitors compete for their share of the market. “Competition is unavoidable each player must face the reality, this will consequently lead to the minimization of profits but this can also improve the standards for some players in the industry” stated Wang.

Maintaining competitive advantage in the market is crucial for survival and development Chinese manufacturers each have their own tactics and strategy when approaching such a competitive market. “Keeping one step ahead of the game, we will continue to incorporate new ideas to our products without compromising quality” stated Telan Lee. According to Eric Lee, apart from the improvement of products and technology expanding the application of the products is part of their competitive strategy.

The overall outlook for the 2012 biometrics market is unanimous between China's manufacturers, the market will continue to expand at a steady rate, with the release of new products and technology. “What to look out for in the future is that biometrics will not only be used by companies to monitor attendance and access control, we will see the growing use of biometrics in domestic, government, education sector and hospitals,” said Wang. Telan Lee points out that another particular market is the logistics networks where biometrics will be integrated into the system.

Further investments in marketing, development of new technology and ensuring product quality continues to be a top priority for China's biometrics manufacturers. To uphold their share of the market, the continuous release of new products integrated with the latest functions and technology is what can be anticipated for the biometric market in the future.

Displaying Integration Advantage to ProvideQuality Services

Displaying Integration Advantage to ProvideQuality Services

Editor / Provider: EvangElinE XiE | Updated: 5/15/2012 | Article type: China Corner

ZTE NetView (ZNV) keeps receiving high regard from its customers around the world and has made a difference in various projects. Recently it won the bid of “Intelligent City” in Marseille, France, which is a strong proof that ZNV takes the lead to be an industrial surveillance solution provider. Through several year's growth, ZNV has realized a leap in R&D upgrade and market expansion. a&s talks to Lei Jun, Vice President of ZTE NetView to unveil its achievements .

Keep Strengthening
By firstly proposing “unified surveillance” solutions and sustained investment in R&D, ZTE NetView owns most of the core terminal monitoring products at present and can provide full series of sensors, cameras, DVR, DVS and data collection modules to collect and control remote data, alarm, video and audio via wire line or wireless network even in complicated surveillance environment; The company offers different surveillance system software and solutions for different industries and professional surveillance services for customer.

As ZNV is always stressing in-house R&D and manufacturing capabilities, the percentage accounts for more than fifty percent in optimizing the software platform. The intelligent analysis technology can integrate the statistics and surveillance resources, which creates the opportunity for ZNV to engage widely in various projects such as vehicle monitoring system, petroleum applications, intelligent traffic solutions and etc.

With a background in telecommunication, ZNV has a normative operation and standard practice not only for the design of the service system but also for maintaining it. “The end-users are what we value the most, for the benefit is obtained from the after-sales service,” said Lei.

Based on a steady platform, ZNV put much emphasis on the professional application, “We hope to form a close connection with the subsystem of our clients,” said Lei. As one part of its business, video surveillance can relate to the work flow and emergency dispatch, which is demanded by many important industries such as public security and resource transportation.

Additionally, ZNV applies sorts of innovative technology in product design, revitalizing the long-term development of security market, as a forerunner in various applications. ZNV was the first one that put up with the concept of “unified surveillance”, leading the domestic video surveillance platform into the integration.

Professional Tailor
Based on the broad market reach of ZTE, there is a wide range of projects in foreign market for its option, which requires various supports including the cost and execution. “Due to the high credibility and good corporate image plus the sound technology, by cooperating with the local integrators, we can deploy the integration project with controllable cost,” added Lei.

Recently, the company has become the only provider of the HD surveillance equipment for “Intelligent City” project in Marseille, France. As the second largest city and harbor, city administration is undoubtedly a priority. “Until 2003, it is necessary to install 1,600 camera to protect the citizens, “said the mayor of Marseille. To reach this goal, ZNV has supplied a total solution including the platform, switch, storage facility and the monitoring terminal, which is helping to realize the all-fiber access with storage center of large capacity, generating the powerful security for the city.

Certainly, ZNV is keen to make the surveillance system more intelligent. “With powerful software platform, it can make accessible network technology possible, which is the basic element for building a wisdom city,” said Lei. Similar to the Internet of Things, the linkage between the statistics and video becomes critical since a successful surveillance system should be in charge of analyzing the statistics.

Specific Product Line
Compared with some manufactures with the complete product line, ZNV has not given much consideration to the medium and low-end market; a wide cooperation for this part could see possibilities in future development.

“We prefer to refine the existing product line rather than blindly follow to supply the latest but immature products, which are not yet widely applied,” mentioned Lei. It can be deduced that ZNV will insist on providing the most cost-effective products in order to tap the vast market home and abroad.

With regards to the current product line, ZNV's distribution covers the end-to-end devices and central platform, which can meet the diversified demand of end-users. The video cameras incorporate analogue, network, HD and intelligent series, the highest definition range from CIF to D1; the networks storage products provide as many option as 4-channel, 8-channel, 16-channel, 64-channel to 256-channel. All the series above support the customized solution and can render the timely service by specified R&D with property intellectual right.

Aiming High-End Market
With the growth of the company as well as market, ZNV has made a collection of channel partners sharing the same value and purpose. “We still identify ZNV as the device providers, as long as the products can meet the demand, we hold a open attitude to expanding our markets no matter being OEM partner or brand booster,” said Lei.

Unlike some other players who have quite detailed product line from front to back end, ZNV still focus on the high-end market, its current application is concentrated upon the public security, army, railway traffic, energy and etc. Multiple surveillance integration solutions have been provided such as power monitoring system solution, environmental supervision and management system.

Integration Drives Stadium Security

Integration Drives Stadium Security

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 5/14/2012 | Article type: Commercial Markets

- Integration helps to minimize security loopholes.
- Mobile security, connected security and expanded security networks are key features of upcoming security technologies.
- Stadium security is extending beyond the gates of the stadium and into the surrounding city.

The coming few years promise to be filled with exciting sports competitions. The technologies that are protecting stadiums are rising to the security challenge. Current trends are pushing security technologies to be better integrated, expand their area of protection and have better mobility.

Recent advances in stadium and sports event security technologies are seeing greater integration, expanded protection areas and increased mobility. The first trend is linking of security efforts. Integration helps to minimize security loopholes. Putting in automatic processes or procedures uses security technologies in a more efficient manner.

The second trend is the expansion of security efforts outside of the event venues and into the cities. More coordinated and comprehensive security strategies are possible now with innovations in networking, integration and communication.

The third trend is mobile security technology that can move and adapt to changing security needs. These three trends will emerge again as different sports event security technology is discussed.

Integrated Approach
The arrival of PSIM technology allows connectivity between disparate security systems. “The PSIM software system enables city agencies to connect and leverage any number and variety of disparate physical security and information systems available across multiple agencies and private organizations into one common operating picture, including legacy security systems, without having to purchase new or additional hardware or implement custom coding,” said James Chong, founder and CTO, of VidSys.

This connectivity stretches security networks beyond traditional stadiums. “In the past, security was only configured within the stadium,” Chong said. “With PSIM, security now extends beyond the stadium to areas within the vicinity that are impacted by the event. Any physical security device — video cameras, sensors and so on — in the immediate areas can be integrated with the system, extending the security zone to increase situational awareness and management capabilities.”

Outside the arena, PSIM can manage traffic flow in cities by integrating with advanced traffic management systems. Organizers can see where congestion is, look at other security and event factors and react accordingly.

PSIM also demonstrates great security mobility. Since PSIM is software-based, it can be used to establish mobile command centers. Traditionally, only the fixed command center would receive all security feeds, but now mobile command centers can act as backup command centers to provide redundant coverage and additional eyes on the event as needed, Chong said.

Mobile security, connected security and expanded security networks are key features of upcoming security technologies. Finding ways to further push security technologies in these directions may help to further strengthen security efforts at stadiums

Network Backbone
Wireless networks are easily deployed without major infrastructural changes, as opposed to wired networks. In the past few years, advances in wireless technology allow networks to be more stable with greater capacity. Often, these wireless networks are designed with video surveillance in mind, and can easily extend surveillance networks. For large-scale events, as there are usually several layers of security before reaching actual event venues, wireless networks can extend security into the city.

“The fact is that wireless is becoming more widely adopted and more recognized globally as a very fast, cost-effective way to deploy cameras around stadiums and transportation arteries,” said Geoffrey Smith, VP of Business Development and Strategic Accounts, Proxim Wireless. “It's one-tenth the cost of running fiber, and they can deploy it immediately, versus having to wait months and months for all the permits to be done, to trench the equipment and dig up the streets.”

For the 2010 Winter Olympics, wireless networks were deployed around Vancouver to backhaul video surveillance footage. These wireless networks were not only deployed around the Olympic venues, but throughout the city to keep an eye on the influx of people. In particular, transportation routes, like traffic signal controls, needed to be outfitted with security technology. In preparation for the 2010 Olympics, Vancouver also deployed an intelligent video solution into its public transportation system. Such security measures helped city management to keep an eye on crowds, congestion problems and evacuations from a venue, in the case of an emergency.

As networks extend into the city, they make it possible to implement security measures and catch threats before they reach the stadium. “We're seeing a big emphasis on safety and security around stadiums, but mostly around providing surveillance connectivity outside of the stadiums even throughout the city,” Smith said. “There is a lot of focus on the ports, on the cities, to prevent anything that is trying to get in. The city tries to address problems before they get there. That's why people are trying to secure the roadways, also related the stadium security — to control things when an incident happens. It's a coordinated effort between the city, transportation and the stadiums.”

At these large events, security is a national issue, and security is deployed far outside of the realm of a traditional stadium. Prior to an event, names of potential disturbances are solicited from other countries. At the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, the North American Aerospace Defense Command monitored the skies for unusual activity. For the upcoming London Olympics, biometric information in the form of fingerprints and facial scans are being taken from more than 10,000 Olympic athletes and coaches for identification. Prevention is key for sports event security, which is exactly what extended networks help to do.

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