You are at : Search > Articles Search Results

Articles Search Results

1143 Articles and 89 related Products found for storage

Cracking down on camera hacks

Cracking down on camera hacks

Editor / Provider: William Pao, a&s International | Updated: 9/17/2014 | Article type: Tech Corner

Recent reports on baby cam hacks raised new concerns over malicious intrusion into networked security devices. The threat is even more imminent for home and small business users who are not as well protected as their enterprise counterparts. Luckily for them, most of today's network camera manufacturers work hard to keep flaws to a minimum and equip their products with various security features.

Two recent incidents where baby cams were attacked by hackers caught the attention of vendors and users alike. One happened in Ohio just in April, when a couple was awoken late at night by strange sounds coming from the baby cam in their toddler's room, only to find that the camera had been taken control over by a hacker. A similar incident happened last year, when a Houston couple heard a man swearing through the baby cam in their infant's room and found out the Wi-Fi-connected device was hacked. In both cases, it was found that the cameras, made by the same vendor, contained security flaws that could easily be exploited.

In fact, hacking can happen to not just cameras but also practically any device on the Internet. Last year, the NAS device of a particular vendor was found to have a vulnerability potentially allowing attackers to execute arbitrary commands on the system. The vendor has since released a patch to solve this problem.

The above incidents illustrate the danger facing users of network cameras and other security devices, which may be targets for malicious intruders. That danger is even more imminent for home and SMB users who, unlike their enterprise counterparts, are not protected by firewalls or advanced perimeter defense software. What they can do to protect themselves has therefore become an urgent issue. Luckily for them, today's network camera makers work hard to minimize flaws and equip their products with various security features, which users should take advantage of to reduce the risk of these devices being hacked. “In general it is not possible to guarantee that computers and network devices do not contain flaws that may be exploited for malicious attack. However, there are measures that can be taken in order to reduce the risk considerably and eliminate the obvious flaws,” said Fred Juhlin, Senior Consultant for Solution Management at Axis Communications, whose Companion series targets home and SMB users.

Access
Unauthorized access to a system can be prevented by a simple yet effective method called password protection. Most network cameras today allow users to create their own usernames and passwords, which can be secured through various means. Zinwell, which makes power line-based home security cameras, has patented a technology that keeps passwords from being sent out to the Internet. “In that case, hackers won't be able to get passwords from the Web,” said Ben Huang, Senior Marketing Supervisor at Zinwell.

Encryption of passwords is another protection method. “The user has the option to let the system remember passwords, and if so the client protects the password with encryption,” said Juhlin.

Once a user accesses the camera, it's a good idea for the device to have multilevel access control based on the user's privilege. For example, a regular user may only view streaming video, while an administrator may access the camera's storage or control the device. In fact, most network cameras today offer this functionality. “This means users can control exactly who can see what in their system, and that their video is safe from any form of third-party manipulation,” Juhlin said.

Encryption
Many IP cams also allow encryption. The videos can be encrypted before being sent over to the network to make sure that unauthorized persons cannot view or tamper with the data. Different encryption technologies are used. One of the most commonly used is SSL/TLS, which encrypts contents with special codes that can be deciphered only by pairs of public and private keys, the latter of which are hidden in the computers of the communicating parties. As private keys can be obtained in a security breach, Bosch, whose Advantage line also targets home and SMB users, makes sure that this will never happen.

“The SSL private key of the device is stored securely on the smart card chip that is directly involved in the SSL connection setup. The private key never leaves the chip and cannot be read out even if the user has complete access to the device,” said Konrad Simon, Product Manager for IP Video at Bosch Security Systems. “This way no access is possible to the private key, even in a hostile approach someone would have achieved to read sensitive data from internal memory.”

Advanced encryption standard (AES) is a protocol that encrypts contents with 128-bit, 192-bit, or 256-bit keys, making encoded messages harder to decipher by untrusted parties. Among camera makers that use AES is Amaryllo, another home security camera maker. It uses 256-bit encryption, at the same time ensuring that video latency is less than 0.5 seconds.

Keeping Flaws to a Minimum
Vendors who are security-minded keep exploitable flaws to a minimum. One way to achieve this is checking third-party software regularly to make sure problematic software isn‘t incorporated into their products. As an example, to implement SSL encryption, many camera makers use OpenSSL, which drew huge attention in the security world in April when it was found it contained a bug called Heartbleed. If left ignored, Heartbleed could lead to the leak of sensitive data, such as usernames and passwords. One camera maker that managed to avert this disaster was Bosch. “We do not use OpenSSL as SSL implementation on our IP cameras, encoders, and decoders. The SSL implementation in our devices is not OpenSSL, nor is it related, so Heartbleed did not affect us at all,” Simon said.

Crowdsourcing, where users in a community share their collective wisdom, is another way to identify flaws and get them fixed. “We monitor discussions in the network community to quickly identify possible vulnerabilities which may impact our products. If a vulnerability is discovered, we will provide patches, firmware, risk analysis, or recommendation to our customers,” Axis's Juhlin said.

User Awareness
While camera vendors may have included a range of security features in their devices, users should also do their part by taking advantage of these features. For example, it's often the case that users simply use the camera maker's default username and password settings, which are easily obtainable. It is also important to check for notices on firmware updates or security patches, which are normally sent via e-mail. Moreover, users may consider isolating their cameras from a local network, since hackers may attack other devices in the network through the camera.

A Two-Way Street
Keeping hackers at bay requires a commitment by both vendors and users. The vendor should build their products with the concept of “security” in mind, while users should familiarize themselves with security features included in cameras and use them whenever possible. It's only through this two-way street can security camera users achieve their primary objective — keeping safe — without being harmed in the process.

Synectics adds Penn premiers to growing North American gaming portfolio

Synectics adds Penn premiers to growing North American gaming portfolio

Editor / Provider: Synectics | Updated: 9/11/2014 | Article type: Security 50

More than 75 gaming properties in North America and Canada now benefit from Synectics' integrated surveillance solutions, with two new Ohio Penn National Gaming casinos the latest additions to the firm's extensive portfolio.

Between them, Hollywood Gaming at Mahoning Valley and Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway will offer almost 2000 video lottery terminals (VLTs), bars, dining, concession stands and entertainment, spread over state-of-the-art facilities spanning 133,000 sq. ft.

Penn National Gaming, one of Synectics' long-standing corporate customers, is capitalizing on advances in IP-based solutions for protecting its newest Hollywood premiers. At both locations, footage from close to 1,000 high definition IP cameras, together with third-party transactional and alarm data, will be integrated within Synectics' Synergy command and control platform to create a unified security and situational awareness solution.

15 Penn Gaming facilities across Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania now use Synectics' video management and integration and scalable data storage solutions.

John Katnic, Vice President of Global Gaming at Synectics, said: “Working on new projects with long-standing customers like Penn is particularly rewarding as they constantly push us to improve our products and meet very challenging deadlines. In this highly competitive market, you simply don't have loyal repeat customers if you haven't listened, evolved and grown together. It's always been our strategy and strength to concentrate our attention and resources on a few key clients with unique requirements and to make sure we consistently meet their technology and delivery expectations on time. It's a 'partnership' in every sense of the word.”

Synectics has already completed 11 major upgrades or installs in North America so far in 2014, with 11 more scheduled for completion before the end of the year. Globally, the surveillance solutions business now supports over 100 gaming properties thanks to its unique non-proprietary hardware and software and proven track record in the casino marketplace.

Penn is not the only long-standing customer to expand or overhaul its surveillance capabilities with Synectics this year. John continued: “Synectics has worked with the Ontario Lottery & Gaming (OLG) for nearly 10 years – our technology is installed in two dozen tightly regulated gaming facilities throughout the Province. Caesars Casino Windsor was Synectics' very first North American casino installation and we have just replaced and upgraded their original Synectics recording system with a hybrid system that incorporates the latest IP video technology. It's a mutually beneficial long-term relationship we are very proud of.”

Synectics' success in North America this year has been largely driven by increased interest in more scalable and reliable IP-based security solutions, third party system integrations, and user friendly, full featured software functionality.

John explained: “Today's gaming and hospitality facilities are rapidly introducing high definition cameras that require more robust networks and create exciting opportunities for more sophisticated data integration to video and access control, slots, player systems, etc.. With more cameras and data on the network, our customers are increasingly focused on system security, resiliency and redundancy. In response, Synectics has introduced innovative, multi-layered technology solutions for real time data replication and hardware failover such as Synectics' ‘backfilling', which eliminates the threat of data loss or single point of network failure.

“It's an exciting and demanding time for Synectics as a business and for our sector as a whole; thanks to the ongoing success of our large repeat customer base and Synectics exponential growth here and abroad.”

Synectics will be showcasing its latest solutions for the gaming industry at G2E Booth 5340 in Las Vegas (Sept 30th – Oct 2nd)

Hikvision IP cameras integrated with ASUSTOR Surveillance Center

Hikvision IP cameras integrated with ASUSTOR Surveillance Center

Editor / Provider: Hikvision | Updated: 9/11/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Hikvision announced that it has completed integration with ASUSTOR, one of the leading innovators and providers of network storage solutions. Over 100 Hikvision camera models are now verified as being compatible with ASUSTOR's Surveillance Center, bringing a premium surveillance solution to the market.

"We are glad to have ASUSTOR as our integration partner," said Keen Yao, International Marketing Director at Hikvision. “With the seamless integration of ASUSTOR' NAS systems and Hikvision camera series, both parties will be able to provide versatile solutions for mutual customers, regardless of SME and professional applications. Besides, customers are also allowed to access a bevy of easy-to-use features, Smart features and much more from Hikvision cameras."

"In addition to the need for a safe and stable storage system, high quality network IP cameras are also required when creating a comprehensive cloud surveillance system, " said James Su, Product Manager at ASUSTOR "We are elated to be partnering with world renowned IP camera brand, Hikvision, in completing compatibility testing and verification for this integration. Now consumers will have even more flexibility and choices than ever before when creating a complete all-purpose surveillance solution."

The Surveillance Center App was developed in-house by ASUSTOR and comes with 4 free IP camera channel licenses, which is higher than the industry standard. For users that require additional camera channels, the newest version of Surveillance Center (version 2.1) supports add-on camera licenses that users can purchase to flexibly add new camera channels*. The latest version of Surveillance Center offers a wealth of advanced functionality including camera patrolling which lets users configure up to 5 different patrol paths with up to 20 preset points along with IVA (Intelligent Video Analytics) smart search which helps users to quickly find critical events from amongst recorded video. With IVA smart search, users can configure a specific area (max. 3 areas), object size and level of sensitivity to search for times where any movement was detected. Additionally, ASUSTOR Surveillance Center provides comprehensive cross-platform support, allowing both Windows and Mac users to use familiar web browsers to access their surveillance feeds. Furthermore, ASUSTOR also offers the free AiSecure mobile app that gives users access to all their surveillance feeds while on the go. AiSecure also provides the ability to receive instant push notifications from Surveillance Center, allowing users to keep up with the latest developments.

Axis network cameras monitor construction of remote fish farm

Axis network cameras monitor construction of remote fish farm

Editor / Provider: AXIS | Updated: 9/9/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Mission
AgriMarine Technologies Inc. of Comox, B.C., is a producer of innovative aquaculture fish-farming technology. The company uses proprietary, solid-walled floating tanks to meet the public's growing demand for sustainably raised seafood. However, the fish farms are built in remote marine locations, making it a challenge to monitor their construction. The company also wanted time-lapsed videos of the construction for marketing purposes.

Solution
AgriMarine turned to full-service media integrator Tremain Media to provide monitoring and daily timelapse video of its construction site at Lois Lake, where it was assembling four fish tanks. To provide optimal coverage, both a fixed Axis network camera and a pan/ tilt/zoom (PTZ) network camera were deployed onsite. The PTZ camera allows AgriMarine to remotely adjust the camera's angle of view when the location of the tanks change, and the HDTV 1080p resolution provides detailed zooming when needed. Real-time images are stored at the edge on the cameras, on local FTP servers and pushed via satellite to time-lapse processing and storage system in the cloud.

Result
Prior to implementing the Axis network cameras, AgriMarine staff needed to travel for hours to retrieve video footage. With remote access, that time is saved, and AgriMarine can use the time-lapse footage and daily recaps to manage the project. Additionally, they can also use the clear and detailed images to support their marketing efforts.

Remote monitoring
AgriMarine has been involved with fish aquaculture since the 1980s using traditional net systems. In 2000, they became involved with land-based systems on Vancouver Island and discovered that, while the fish thrived within the tanks, the pump-ashore land-based farms were far too costly. Instead, the company deployed a team of designers and engineers to develop a solid-wall marine tank for finfish farming in the species' natural habitat. The eco-friendly, in-water tanks are 3,000 m3 in size and designed to reduce energy use, curb environmental impact and improve management of animal health. Originally, AgriMarine installed analog cameras to monitor the tanks' construction, but the tanks were being built in the remote Lois Lake on Vancouver Island. Accessing the site required a three-hour ferry ride followed by another hour of driving, and this significantly limited how often their head office could retrieve footage. “During the pilot project, we had to spend half a day getting to the site, so we could only do it every six days,” says Robert Walker, President of AgriMarine Technologies. “This wasn't acceptable, since we needed more timely information.”

Eyes on the ground and water
AgriMarine turned to Tremain Media for help. The Vancouver Island-based company provides remote video monitoring and daily time-lapse solutions that can be accessed over the Internet. They installed an AXIS Q6035-E PTZ Dome Network Camera and an AXIS P3364-VE Network Camera to monitor tank construction through timelapse images taken at 10-minute intervals. The high-resolution HDTV 1080p time-lapse video allows the design team to analyze specific details of construction without making additional trips to the site. Because of their ease of installation, the cameras can also be moved without hassle in the case of drift or tidal changes. Both cameras target different locations to give a wide view of the farm: the PTZ camera follows tanks as they move, while the fixed camera is installed on a pole with a concrete base that can be moved if required.

Covering the distance
AgriMarine originally wanted to employ a real-time feed, but a constant data stream was too costly to transmit over satellite Internet, and they opted for time-lapse video instead. They can, however, activate a live video feed for special events or emergencies. Each camera has a 32GB SD card onboard for local edge storage. This data is also backed up to two FTP servers on location and sent via satellite to Tremain Media's cloud-based visual data system, where it is managed by the company's Render Engine video management software. From there it is processed into daily time-lapse footage provided to AgriMarine in whatever size or format is needed. “We have a lot of redundancy built into the system. We're dealing with a mission-critical implementation, and there's only one chance to get the footage,” Tremain says. “We only use Axis cameras for our time-lapse and monitoring systems because of their reliability and quality. As a videographer by trade, quality is key to me.”

Marketing in high definition
Beyond the ability to monitor construction, AgriMarine found the videos could also be used as an effective marketing tool to raise their profile in the industry. “It's very exciting. At the same time as we're building the tanks, we can now show investors and prospects what we're building,” Walker says. At a trade conference in Abu Dhabi, the time-lapsed video was the focal point of their display. “They found it really drew people to their booth,” Leah Tremain, owner and CEO of Tremain Media. “That type of ‘booth bait' is really important, because their product isn't necessarily easy to understand if you don't see the size and scope of these projects.”

 

SeSys delivers 500th ATEX certified digital IP CCTV

SeSys delivers 500th ATEX certified digital IP CCTV

Editor / Provider: MOBOTIX | Updated: 9/9/2014 | Article type: Security 50

MOBOTIX AG, one of the leading manufacturers of digital high-resolution, network-based video security systems has announced that SeSys, an Advanced Partner has shipped its 500th ATEX / IECEx digital IP CCTV camera based on a modified MOBOTIX core within a unique design certified for use within inhospitable, hazardous or explosive areas.

The SeSys ATEX and IECEx certified models offer high resolution images for live monitoring and can include integral storage to record any images for post processing or record keeping. Recording can be event driven based on motion, light, or an external trigger, for example a temperature or water vapour sensor. Events can also generate alarms, sending images to alert users or alarm receiving centres of any activity.

All units have been validated by Sira, the UK's leading Notified Body for Ex Product Certification across both the ATEX and IECEx standards. The cameras are certified for ATEX zones 1, 2, 21 and 22 as well as IP66 rated and an optional IP67 rating.

The SeSys models utilise core MOBOTIX features such as Power-over-Ethernet, no moving parts and decentralised connectivity which allows the cameras to be quickly installed and integrated into existing environments.

“Our ATEX cameras have proven popular with defence equipment manufacturers and contractors due to their small size and extremely high levels of reliability,” explains Dan Eames, Technical Director for SeSys, “With no moving parts and a purely digital PTZ function, cameras do not need servicing once deployed – in fact some of our original units deployed in 2008 have run continually without requiring any maintenance which can be an expensive process requiring production lines to be suspended.”

The cameras are used for both security and manufacturing control processes. For example, in one installation, ATEX cameras are used to display the lights and dials on a remotely operated piece of equipment in a high risk area. “In that installation, a particular set of lights turning on will generate an alert to staff in the control room,” says Eames. According to Eames, at half the cost and a third of the size of legacy analogue ATEX certified units, SeSys has experienced strong demand for its cameras and will be demonstrating the units at the upcoming ‘security essen 2014' event in September.

Dominic Chapman, UK country manager for MOBOTIX added, “We actively encourage our partners to build on our technology and develop new use cases and we applaud the technical evolution that SeSys has shown in establishing itself as an innovator in this exciting sector of the market.”

IDIS DirectIP adopted in Thai luxury hotel resort

IDIS DirectIP adopted in Thai luxury hotel resort

Editor / Provider: IDIS | Updated: 9/5/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

A luxury hotel and resort group has completed the first installation of IDIS DirectIP full-HD surveillance at its new flagship resort in Phuket, Thailand, as part of a wider DirectIP rollout programme. Commissioned ahead of the resort's inauguration in December, the project is the first of twelve DirectIP solutions to be installed across the group's new properties in Asia and North America.

Ahead of opening the Phuket resort, the group's security team needed to implement a modern and high performance HD video surveillance solution that would be unobtrusive and match the resorts luxury brand and image. The solution needed to ensure the safety and security of the resort's guests and staff, while the implementation needed to meet extremely tight deadlines ahead of the inauguration in late 2013.

In November 2013, the hotel group turned to their trusted systems integrator, Rutledge Integrated Systems (RIS). RIS worked in partnership with CCTV specialist's iCenter HD to review a number of server-based surveillance solutions. After thorough evaluation, the team selected DirectIP, based on its innovative high performance combined with its capability for fast and simple implementation, affordable pricing and bundled IDIS Center™ video management, requiring no ongoing licence fees.

The complete end-to-end DirectIP solution, comprising 45 internal and external dome cameras and two 32-channel network video recorders (NVRs), is managed through the simple and intuitive IDIS Center video management software (VMS). The IP-enabled and vandal proof range of one and two megapixel cameras, also feature pan-tilt-zoom, low light and audio functionality. Eighteen terabytes of storage provided by the DirectIP NVRs support the resort's requirement to store 31 days of footage all in full-HD.

The user-friendly solution operates just like a traditional analogue DVR-based system with all the necessary accessories supplied by IDIS to build a complete full-HD surveillance solution.

Andy Rutlege, Managing Director at RIS, said, “The luxury resort group are an existing prestigious and important customer for RIS, and we were determined to complete the project ahead of the inauguration. As an established systems integrator, having completed a large number of IP CCTV projects, DirectIP offered us a previously unseen level of seamless integration. To ensure we delivered the project on time and on budget, iCenter HD distributed the kit in record time to Thailand and remained incredibly responsive throughout the project.

“We are currently rolling out two similar DirectIP solutions in the Maldives and Miami with another nine scheduled over the next few months. We intend to use IDIS DirectIP™ combined with the services offered by iCenter HD for these and many projects in the future.”

Hard disk drives work hard to ensure data integrity

Hard disk drives work hard to ensure data integrity

Editor / Provider: William Pao, a&s International | Updated: 9/4/2014 | Article type: Tech Corner

Hard disk drives (HDDs) are the core of a storage system, which is critical in a surveillance installation. With growing demand for storage devices capable of storing bigger and more complex video data for longer periods of time, the need for higher-capacity and more reliable hard drives also rises. Today's surveillance HDDs consume less power, have better error detection capabilities, and are designed specifically for intensive writing that is typical of surveillance operations. All this is intended to meet users' growing storage needs.

The history of HDDs goes way back; they were Introduced in the 1950s. Yet for a long time, HDDs focused primarily on the storage of personal and corporate data and lacked surveillance applications. However, this has changed with the growing importance of the security industry. As camera resolutions get higher and video retention periods become longer, demand for HDDs that are bigger in volume and designed specifically for writing-intensive surveillance operations has increased.

In fact, it can be said that surveillance is a growth driver for the hard drive industry. A recent study by IHS predicted that revenue for both internal and external HDDs in video surveillance applications would rise from US$638.7 million in 2013 to $1 billion by 2017, a remarkable 57% increase. The market research firm attributed the increase in storage demand to various factors, including better performance and the use of high-resolution cameras. “The HDD industry as a whole will reap the benefits of a fast-growing video surveillance industry,” the report said. Indeed, today's HDDs come with advanced features, such as error detection and vibration tolerance, to make sure no data is lost. Capacity, which totals 4 terabytes (TB) in most of today's enterprise-level HDDs, will only increase over time. All this is meant to ensure data reliability and integrity over a long period of time and boost the overall performance of the surveillance deployment.

Consumer vs. Surveillance HDDs
The major difference between HDDs for consumer and surveillance applications is that the former is reading intensive and the latter is designed for data writing most of the time. “Consumer electronics (CE) HDDs' primary focus is entertainment systems, like a consumer DVR, where you typically record content and play it back over and over again. In this environment, smooth playback is very important,” said CN Chu, Technical Manager for Taiwan at Seagate.

Surveillance, on the other hand, requires constant writing of data as video feeds from different cameras are continuously transmitted to the storage device. HDDs for surveillance applications must therefore be designed from a writing-intensive perspective. “For surveillance applications, the customer needs an HDD that writes data 90%of the time, while reading accounts for just 10%or even 5%,” said Patrick Lo, Director of APAC Marketing, Digital Video and Data Center Storage Division at WD. “If there is no event, the video data is either retained or overwritten.”

Moreover, surveillance HDDs must be able to withstand lots of heat, being often enclosed in systems such as NAS or servers. Surveillance HDDs must also have more stringent fault tolerance requirements, able to perform even in the event of a components failure. Finally, consumer HDDs work at an average of eight hours a day, five days a week. Surveillance HDDs, on the other hand, must work round-the-clock. And given surveillance systems are always on, HDDs with improved energy conservation features can help users save on power.

Comparison between consumer and surveillance HDDs

 

Consumer HDDs

Surveillance HDDs

Power-on hours

8x5

24x7

Designed for multi-HDD recording

No

Yes (1 to unlimited)

Mean time before failure (hours)

700K

1-1.4 million

Workloads

Balanced between read and write

High sequential write/recording high-resolution videos at all time

Power management

High spin-up current >2amp

Low spin-up current <2amp

Warranty

2 years

3-5 years


Features to ensure data Integrity
Imagine the horror of not being able to find or retrieve a vital piece of data in the event of an accident. Since surveillance HDDs are tasked with storing piles upon piles of video data that is too valuable to be lost, they come with cutting-edge features to make sure all the data is kept securely and intact.

Error Detection
Error detection is a feature that activates when the system detects an impending HDD failure to allow the engineer to act accordingly, such as backing up data or making replacements. To make sure that error detection works, the HDD must be able to “shake hands” with the error detection software developed by the system manufacturer. “We do not just sell HDDs. In this industry, we sell a service and work with system manufacturers from the very beginning during the R&D stage,” Lo said.

Power Management
The more power a hard drive consumes, the more heat it will emit. Overtime, this will shorten a hard drive's life expectancy. Power management is therefore, in the words of Lo, “a topic that, for surveillance players, will never go out of style.”

Power management also plays a major role in the economics of running surveillance. “Because surveillance HDDs run 24x7, power consumption is a big deal. The less power required by the drive the lower overall cost of ownership for the end user — especially as you scale into larger surveillance data centers,” Chu said. To lower overall power consumption, HDD manufacturers have developed various technologies to achieve this purpose, for example minimizing disk operations during periods of downtime and reducing the “spin-up power” — power needed to get the disk from a state of rest to full rotation. A sudden surge in power consumption during this time may be costly and may even affect system operations later.

Read/Write
The hard disk's read and write speeds are dependent upon the user's surveillance system. A hard drive that supports a maximum sustained data rate of 180MB/second, for example, can accommodate up to 32 simultaneous recordings from HD cameras. “If you're streaming from a higher camera count and in higher resolution formats, you will need a drive that can support a higher throughput,” Chu said.

Besides read/write speed, effective and accurate writing into the hard drive is also critical. “Sometimes the HDD will keep recording, yet frame drops may occur, and that can be a huge problem,” Lo said, adding WD has a solution, called AllFrame, for this situation.

Selecting the right HDD
Picking the right HDD to install really depends on various factors. Installers and integrators should consider a range of things, for example the size of the project, the level of reliability demanded, and the number of drives that will be packed in a unit, before choosing the right product.

Type of Project
One way to figure out which HDD to get is by determining the size of installation. For a home environment with a camera count of four to eight, the installer may choose a standardlevel drive with workload of up to 60 TB a year and warranty of three years — that's total workload of 180 TB for three years. For companies or businesses with 40 to 50 cameras, an HDD with total workload of 900 TB over a five-year period (180 TB times five) may be considered. For the more missioncritical operations such as casinos, airports, and government agencies, total workload of 2,750 TB over a five-year period (550TB times five) is preferred.

Number of Drives
When HDDs are deployed in multi-drive units such as NAS or large servers, rotational vibration (RV) may become an issue that may cause data loss and corruption. “In systems with more than five drives, vibrations from the chassis or other rotating drives may cause enough vibration to impact the system performance as well as data integrity,” Chu said.

To address this issue, RV sensors are built into surveillance-purpose HDDs to minimize the impact of vibration. WD's technology, for example, has a sensor that detects vibration and triggers a response that keeps the drive heads within the safe operating region during read and write operations.

Level of Reliability
If the user requires a higher level of data reliability, then it's preferable to choose HDDs with a higher mean time before failure (MTBF) — the predicted time before the drive goes out. HDDs in the market now have MTBF ranging from 1 million hours to 1.4 million hours.

HDDs vs. SSDs Solid state drives (SSDs) are storage devices that are based on integrated circuits rather than on electromagnetism like HDD. SSDs do have a place in surveillance. They are more resistant to extreme conditions and vibrations, making them suitable for outside or vehicular applications. They also boast faster read and write speeds.

However, HDDs still have advantages. First, HDDs can stand a lot of roughening up. Enterprise-level HDDs can read or write 600,000 times, while SSDs can do so only 30,000 to 50,000 times. Secondly, HDDs are a lot more inexpensive. The price of a 512 GB SSD, the maximum spec in the market right now, can get the user more than one 4TB HDD.

“SSDs are suitable for many applications, for example car digital recorders which do not require big capacities. But will they completely replace HDDs in the near future? I don't think so,” Lo said. “And I don't think it's an issue of who replaces who, as finding the right storage technology really depends on your operating environment and budget.”

Bigger and faster is the future
As for the future of hard drives, the trends are that they will feature bigger and bigger capacity. Currently, maximum HDD capacity is 4TB, a figure “that is set to double every two years,” Lo said. “You can never satisfy customers' storage needs.” PCI Express (PCIe), a high-speed serial computer expansion bus standard, is meanwhile expected to replace SATA as the mainstream interface for connecting storage to PC systems. PCIe boasts transfer rates of 1 to 2GB/s, faster than 3 to 6Gb/s for SATA.

Good prospects down the road
With bigger capacity, better performance, and less power consumption, today's surveillance HDDs help surveillance players big time by keeping data safe and secure. It has been said that a hard disk will be able to hold 20TB of data by 2020. With storage technology continuously improving, that scenario is no longer a far-fetched dream.

Milestone adds support for offline camera recording using ONVIF

Milestone adds support for offline camera recording using ONVIF

Editor / Provider: Milestone | Updated: 9/4/2014 | Article type: Security 50

Milestone Systems has just released its bi-monthly Device Pack 7.5 for the XProtect portfolio of VMS products. The most significant feature in this upgrade is support for ONVIF Edge Storage: cameras with Edge Storage can record video directly on internal storage.

Milestone XProtect Corporate supports the intelligent use of camera-integrated Edge Storage as a complement to centralized video storage. Edge Storage can be used as a safeguard function for uninterrupted video recording in the event of network or server failure. The flexible retrieval function in XProtect Corporate helps preserve network bandwidth when retrieving recordings from the Edge Storage in the camera. This ensures transparent operation, seen from a user perspective.

Support of Edge Storage previously demanded dedicated driver programming by Milestone, working with the Camera Alliance Partners (CaPs). Milestone XProtect Corporate, for example, has been supporting Axis and Sony implementations of Edge Storage using dedicated drivers since 2012. The new implementation of ONVIF Edge Storage in Device Pack 7.5, enables Milestone partners and customers to choose devices from any camera manufacturer supporting ONVIF Edge Storage.

The XProtect Device Packs include optimized drivers that enable the relevant capabilities of a camera or other hardware device to be managed by the XProtect software. Milestone works closely with the device manufacturers in the Camera Partner Program (CaPP) to achieve the optimal interaction between their devices and the XProtect VMS. This ensures the highest quality for a video surveillance solution, which is important for total system operability, efficiency and stability. Milestone is constantly promoting driver standards like ONVIF and remains dedicated to support the broadest range of cameras and devices on the market.

"This is yet another testimonial of the power of open platform technology," says Christian Bohn, Milestone Systems VP Corporate Marketing & Alliances. "This rapid implementation of ONVIF Edge Storage is a clear illustration of our dedication to giving our partners the broadest and most comprehensive device support in the market - now and in the future. Milestone will continue to drive video enabling business by utilizing such possibilities in open platform technology. "

The device support in XProtect reaches beyond digital video devices because the software also has comprehensive support for encoders which allow analog cameras to be connected to the VMS. Support for 15 new encoders from Bosch, Ateme, Mango DSP, UDP Technology and ACTi has been added in this version of the Device Pack, lifting the number of supported encoders to well over 200.

The extensive encoder support in Device Pack 7.5 combines positively with Milestone's recent change in encoder licensing which offers end users and partners an easy and cost-effective transition from analog to IP technology. The new licensing model only demands one license per encoder unit, as opposed to the industry norm of one license per connected camera.

Milestone is scheduled to showcase open platform technologies at these upcoming industry events:
• ISAF – Sep 18 – 21, Stand A-760 (Turkey)
• Security Essen – Sep 23 – 26, Hall 2/stand 216 (Germany)
• ASIS – Sep 29 – Oct 2, Stand 1043 (United States)

Samsung Techwin tells why it invests in analogue product line

Samsung Techwin tells why it invests in analogue product line

Editor / Provider: Samsung Techwin | Updated: 9/3/2014 | Article type: Security 50

In a brief interview Tim Biddulph, Product Manager for the Security Solution division of Samsung Techwin Europe Ltd, has explained the decision to invest in the development of a new generation of analogue cameras and recorders.

Q: Tim, at a time when IP network based video surveillance solutions are increasingly being specified for projects of all sizes, why has Samsung Techwin made what many will think is a surprising decision to introduce a new range of analogue products?
A: The widespread adoption of IP is inevitable and at Samsung Techwin we have been developing our open Platform WiseNetIII 1.3MP, 2MP and 3MP camera range, as well as our ‘zero configuration' NVRs that are changing the way we all work with IP based video surveillance.

There is nevertheless an almost countless number of existing analogue CCTV systems. These maybe working well but the users may now wish to upgrade to achieve improved identification grade images, which their existing analogue cameras cannot deliver; and the users are not ready for various reasons to migrate to a network based solution.
We have therefore introduced our new Beyond 1280H series of analogue cameras (1000TVL) and DVRs that are interoperable with the many thousands of existing analogue CCTV systems across Europe.

Q: Where do you think they are likely to be installed?
A: Anywhere there is a need for a highly competitively priced video monitoring solution but where the user does not wish to compromise on quality or functionality. Collectively the first eight new models are in fact designed to offer solutions for a wide range of application, and environments from offices, retail stores, schools, hospitals and warehouses, to more challenging environments such as airports, ports, transport facilities, car parks and town centres.

Q: Do think the Beyond series is likely to be specified for new installations?
A: Although we have introduced the new cameras and domes with legacy systems in mind, we believe that the new cameras and DVRs will prove to be very popular with installers who are not as confident with network based solutions and where their customers do not at this time wish to invest in an IP infrastructure.

Q: What is so special about the Beyond analogue series?
A: Primarily it is the fact that they incorporate 1280H technology which offers users the opportunity to capture and record very high quality images at 1000TV lines. Equally important, the eight new cameras and domes are equipped as standard with innovative and technically advanced features which until now, users might have only expected to see built into IP network cameras.

Q: Can you give some examples of this?
A: Many of the new highly competitively priced models feature enhanced Wide Dynamic Range which, with performance greater than 120dB, can accurately produce images in scenes that simultaneously contain very bright and very dark areas, such as reception areas. They are also equipped with SSNR IV, Samsung Techwin's new generation of noise reduction technology, to deliver high resolution images in night time conditions without any smear or “ghosting”. Other key features include various forms of video analytics, and defog which can improve the clarity of images captured in poor weather conditions such as rain, smoke or fog.

Q: Are the new cameras and DVRs compatible with all existing analogue systems?
A: Yes, the good news is that the Beyond series is fully interoperable with current, and legacy analogue systems.

Q: With so many already on the market, was it really necessary for Samsung Techwin to introduce some new DVRs?
A: We did so to ensure that customers can gain maximum benefit from the outstanding quality images captured by the new eight Beyond models and by this I mean that the new high performance 4, 8 and 16 channel Beyond DVRs can simultaneously record 1000 TV lines images in real time across all their channels.

We have also taken the opportunity to make the new DVRs are user friendly as possible. For example, they offer the flexibility to separately configure each of their channels to make best use of the available storage capacity by enabling users to set the specific image quality/resolution required for each camera location. They also have an individual camera loop-through feature and a simple HDD upgrade facility.

They also benefit from a new ultra user friendly GUI (Graphical User Interface) and offer authorised users the option to remotely view live or recorded video from a PC or any Android or IOS supported smartphone or tablet via Samsung Techwin's license-free SSM, SmartViewer or iPOLiS Mobile monitoring software. A built-in web viewer offers enhanced compatibility via Chrome, Explorer and Safari.

Public school district in Nebraska deploys IP solutions with Genetec and Axis

Public school district in Nebraska deploys IP solutions with Genetec and Axis

Editor / Provider: Genetec | Updated: 9/2/2014 | Article type: Education

North Bend Central School District (NBCPS) in America has installed Genetec Security Center to better protect its elementary and junior high school students.

North Bend Central School District serves a community of 1,200 residents in the southwest corner of Dodge County, Nebraska. Its facilities include a PK-6 elementary school and a central junior-senior high school campus, accommodating approximately 560 students. While North Bend is a close-knit community and usually devoid of serious risk, NBCPS always stays vigilant in ensuring its students and faculty are safe.

The school district had been using a very small analog digital video recorder (DVR) camera system to track minor incidents of vandalism in its high school building, and doors to both buildings were secured by keys. The manual process of locking and unlocking doors and tracking keys was tedious and cumbersome. Upon receiving a sizeable financial federal bond, the school district planned a major infrastructure improvement which included a complete security upgrade. NBCPS turned to Prime Communications, a certified security solutions provider, who proposed Genetec Security Center, for a unified approach to security with video surveillance and access control.
Today, NBCPS is using Security Center to manage a total of 36 network cameras from Axis Communicationsand 15 HID Global door readers and controllers across both buildings.

Synergis, the access control system of Security Center, has been pre-configured to automatically lock and unlock the main entrances and exits of both school buildings according to school schedules. Since the community also uses certain facilities after-hours, the NBCPS facility managers can easily make schedule adjustments within Synergis to accommodate different events or special exceptions. Administrators can also quickly activate or de-activate cards as required. “Because everything is automated, we don't need to have someone come in and manually lock or unlock doors anymore. We schedule everything in the system or we assign community members visitor badges with specific privileges and access rights. Synergis has been really easy to use,” explains Jim Cody, Technology Coordinator at NBCPS.

From an IT perspective, Security Center has also been extremely adaptable by running within a virtualized environment and thus allowing NBCPS to minimize hardware. Omnicast, the video surveillance system of Security Center is also set to record on motion.
“We're a small district and we don't have the money to spend on terabytes and terabytes of data storage or servers for our security system. Having motion detection supported within Omnicast has saved us a lot of time searching for video and minimized storage costs,” added Cody.

NBCPS is using Security Center mainly for after-the-fact investigations, yet rotating video feeds are consistently displayed on monitors in administration offices. Being able to quickly locate, time-stamp and export video as evidence has proven to be useful to identify a suspect who had damaged school property during a school event and also provided video evidence to parties with different recounts of a traffic accident that was caught on camera.

While Security Center features such as remote monitoring have saved staff considerable time in handling video investigations from home, more powerful features like Security Center Mobile, Health Monitoring and Active Directory Integration are top of the to-add list in the future.

First Page< Prev< | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 >Next >Last Page