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2012 Market Preview by Product Segment

2012 Market Preview by Product Segment

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 12/22/2011 | Article type: Hot Topics

Given the market trends at play, what will the markets actually look like in 2012? Which markets are growing? What are the verticals to watch out for? In this article, a&s analyzes the security markets in 2012 by product segment.






Surveillance
Surveillance is expected to grow in 2012. IMS Research believes that demand for video surveillance equipment will remain strong. “Growth in network video surveillance equipment sales is forecast to exceed 25 percent in 2012,” said Gary Wong, Senior Research Analyst.

Wong predicts the verticals with the fastest growth (in terms of sales revenue) will be transportation, city surveillance and governmental markets. There will be variations among geographic regions, but all verticals are forecast to grow in excess of 15 percent in 2012.

The shift from analog to IP-based surveillance products helped drive the surveillance market following the 2008 financial crisis, and is also expected to drive sales in 2012. IMS Research reports that following 2008, the global analog market was relatively depressed while the network video surveillance market grew almost three times as fast as the total market in 2010, at more than 30 percent. “Throughout 2011, this trend continues to hold, with analog equipment sales remaining muted and network video surveillance vendors exhibiting robust sales figures,” said Blake Kozak, Senior Market Analyst. “Looking forward to 2012, the global video surveillance equipment market is expected to continue to grow, spearheaded by sustained strong network video surveillance equipment growth.”

There is increasing price competition/commoditization of the mid to low tier of the analog surveillance market. As IP video gets cheaper, smaller end users will see more value in switching over to an IP-based system. “The projected dip in the prices of IP cameras is expected to narrow the pricing gap between IP and analog systems,” according to the “Asia Pacific Video Surveillance Market” report from Frost & Sullivan. “The increasing presence of low-cost products from China and Taiwan will further drive down prices, as will the tough economic conditions that compel companies to offer competitive prices.”

Access Control
The access control market is forecast for steady growth in 2012. “Access control is often a purchase that must be made regardless of the economic climate, especially in highly regulated end-user sectors such as banking, government, utilities and airports,” Kozak said. Growth is expected to continue for the near future. According to a new report from Global Industry Analysts, the global electronic access control systems market is to reach US$14.7 billion by 2017. Global financial difficulties will help move this segment forward. “The prolonged 2007 to 2009 recession, interestingly, is expected to be a catalyst for growth as the financial pinch felt by employees and commoners alike can result in increased instances of theft, break-ins, shoplifting and whitecollar offences, thus throwing the focus back on efficient electronic security solutions such as electronic access control systems,” said Global Industry Analysts, in a prepared statement.

According to Kozak, the verticals that are expected to increase investment next year include sports and leisure, utilities, government, health care, airports and hospitality.

Regionally, Global Industry Analysts believe that opportunities in the U.S. remain, but advises watching for markets in APAC. “The U.S. will continue to remain the largest regional market. APAC is the fastest growing regional market, with value sales waxing at a CAGR of about 13.5 percent over the analysis period.”

Intrusion
Of the different product markets, intrusion looks like it will show the slowest growth, Kozak said, “The intrusion detection market has historically been relatively slow growing; as the global economy improves, the technology used in intrusion detection remains relatively unchanged.”

Verticals that are expected to be fastest growing, according to Kozak, are health care, residential and commercial. It is interesting to note that although residential is forecast to be slower than health care, it is nearly 30 times its size. The residential growth has been driven by instances of crime, but also due to the move away from traditional landlines toward wireless and IP. Commercial is forecast to grow most slowly of this group because of the lack of new construction.

However,despite lack of construction, Kozak believes that there are opportunities in the retrofit market. “Forecast to surpass $2.4 billion in 2011, the global intrusion market is poised to recover steadily as the industry capitalizes on new growth opportunities. Unlike other security products that are heavily dependent on new construction, intrusion detection, with its lower penetration rate, witnessed a less dramatic decline during the downturn. As a result of a stronger retrofit market, the Americas experienced a smaller decline compared to EMEA, with retrofit business having a lesser impact in Asia which benefits from stronger economic and construction growth from countries such as China and India.”

HID Global Access Control Solution Helps Beijing Metro Ensure Safety

HID Global Access Control Solution Helps Beijing Metro Ensure Safety

Editor / Provider: HID | Updated: 12/7/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

HID Global, trusted leader in solutions for the delivery of secure identity, announced that Beijing Metro has deployed an access control system consisting of the company's network access controllers and contactless readers to help ensure the safety of its passengers and staff. The centralized, web-based system delivers real-time monitoring with multi-layered access control security, flexible remote-management capabilities and robust failure detection and backup support.

Beijing Metro is using HID Global's network access controller and readers to monitor and control access to, a variety of facilities along its nearly 25-kilometer-long, 11-station Fangshan line. The system makes it easier for staff to prevent unauthorized access to electrical substations, parking lots and other key metro facilities, offices and equipment areas at its stations, most of which are remotely managed.

HID Global's solution enables control center staff to perform centrally-managed station monitoring and access control operations spanning a complex range of entry points, access rules and cardholder information. At the same time, each metro station office can also perform its own station-level management, reporting and data tracking. Control center staff and station-level managers also have real-time access to system status, entry records and card information and are each connected to the central server via TCP/IP for data transmission so they can respond quickly to network failures. The new system also provides multi-layered security and fail-over support using remotely deployed computers at high security level zones and backup communications systems.

“There has been substantial investment in metro system development across China, which drives the need for advanced, web-based access control solutions,” said Eric Chiu, director of sales, Identity & Access Management, China with HID Global. “We are proud of our showcase installation for Beijing Metro, which demonstrates our continuing commitment to providing first-class access control solutions that are helping to fuel the growth of critical transportation infrastructure throughout China.”

Frankfurt Light-Rail Stations Secured by Hikvision Network Video Solution

Frankfurt Light-Rail Stations Secured by Hikvision Network Video Solution

Editor / Provider: Hikvision | Updated: 12/2/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

As an important financial, commercial, and transportation center of Germany, Frankfurt takes great pride in the city's overall infrastructure improvement. While advanced transportation systems are trademarks of the city's foresight, the implementation of a comprehensive solution for all of its 31 underground stations and 16 light rail transit stations – with the later completely located upon the unforgiving German surface - mark an integral moment.

The security solution for the light rail stations, implemented by the German-based company - Indanet AG, was developed to upgrade the existing analog surveillance system to better meet the client's demand for higher image quality and remote monitoring in a more timely fashion; and specifically, in response to emergency situations. Yet, the ability to achieve these security improvements were a direct result of utilizing Hikvision products; both in the design and in the mounting of IP Cameras at these outdoor facilities.

Previously mentioned, there was one significant hurdle these 16 light-rail transit stations had to overcome that many other Frankfurt civic projects did not: these light rail stations were outdoors.

Jurgen Fuchs, Indanet's Director of Strategic Projects at explained, "The German climate can be very unforgiving. These stations are completely outdoors, so the challenges we faced were very different than those at a primarily indoor facility, such as a subway. Outside, we have to deal with absolutely everything."

Using German ingenuity, Indanet AG decided a two-pronged security solution would best fit this environment. One aspect would be for the larger platform area, and the other would be tailor-made for one specific area located upon the platform itself. Yet, both plans needed Hikvision technology to turn these ideas into reality.

Mr. Fuchs chose to monitor the general platform area with Hikvision's 1.3MP Vandal Proof & Weather Proof Network Dome Camera. This was done for a number of reasons, as Mr. Fuchs explained, "This camera was a natural choice. It worked very well with the IP-network we built for the Frankfurt public transportation system, and these cameras gave the system operators' a video image that that had tremendous resolution. But, very importantly, it successfully met the IP65 weather standard – something specifically required by this client."

The 1.3 MP dome camera achieves all of these through a variety of Hikvision technological applications. The high clarity aspect is provided through 1280 x 960 pixels of digital resolution; while the ability to successfully function in the extreme outdoor Frankfurt climate is a direct result of the vandal/weather proof housing encasing this camera.

In fact, this casing ensures an IP66 weather rating, which actually exceeds the pre-existing requirements placed upon this project. Mr. Fuchs further elaborated that "this housing is a very complex and vital part for this camera. There is an internal heater to control temperature differences in the winter, and there is a water-proofing element that keeps out rain, snow, and condensation from adversely affecting the camera. Without these, a camera would not function in Frankfurt's climate."

While, in most cases, the general platform was monitored by the 1.3 MP dome camera, there were certain stations that presented a special challenge: finding a location to mount the camera that would allow an unobstructed view of the emergency columns.

Mr. Fuchs overcame this problem with creativity and Hikvision's 2MP Mini Dome Network Camera. These cameras were installed within the actual column and next to the emergency button. In the event of an emergency, a passenger need only press the button. This immediately triggers the camera and conveys the image in real-time to the control center; thereby alerting security personnel of the situation. Furthermore, a voice panel allows staff to speak with the passenger.

Mr. Fuchs noted, "This camera allows a full realization of security with an efficient, all-in-one tool to immediately diagnose the situation. Importantly, personnel in the security center are able to receive real-time HD video with H.264 video compression from these cameras; thereby greatly helping security staff to recognize the nature of the problem and correctly respond." Additionally, all video footage is permanently recorded and stored for 48 hours, which is the maximum duration allowed by authorities.

Tying both of these Hikvision cameras together to a main security center is an IP-network solution compatible with Nexus VMS codec.

And while this network is centrally monitored, IP also presents an additional benefit: the ability to use PCs to view the cameras' video. Mr. Fuchs noted, "This feature is especially important to early responders, such as firefighters. There is a vital need for these individuals to be able to visually see what is happening in real time."

Year in Review: Security Surges in 2011 from Delayed Projects

Year in Review: Security Surges in 2011 from Delayed Projects

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 11/30/2011 | Article type: Hot Topics

The economic crisis seems to be largely over in 2011, but new debt concerns are sparking anxiety about a second depression. As security deals with market uncertainty, we look at the year's milestones in events, regional and vertical markets, technologies, challenges, and drivers and differentiators.

There has been no shortage of grim headlines this year. In March, the strongest recorded earthquake in Japan killed scores of people, leaving extensive destruction and a nuclear meltdown in its wake. Along with natural disaster, deliberate acts of violence took place, including the senseless Norway attacks and the Moscow airport suicide bombing. In the U.K., mass riots resulted in five deaths and widespread damage.

The past decade in security has been shaped by 9/11, with its mastermind Osama bin Laden meeting his demise in May. However, the war on terrorism is far from over, affecting a younger generation throughout the region. Across the Middle East and North Africa, Arab Spring uprisings toppled authoritarian regimes. Egypt's Prime Minister Hosni Mubarak stepped down after 30 years of power, while Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi was killed in October. Political instability coupled with economic uncertainty has marked the past year as an eventful one.

Not all is bleak though. China hosted the successful 2011 Summer World University Games in Shenzhen, welcoming student athletes from all over the world. Projects came back online, with Asia Pacific expected to invest US$100 billion for 350 airports in the next 10 years, according to Frost & Sullivan. More new infrastructure boosted the security market, which grew in some areas due to political unrest.

M&A
Notable consolidation and restructuring activity went on in 2011, a welcome sign after the recession. Tyco International announced a three-way split in September, with security divided into two companies: ADT and Commercial Fire and Security. “One of the business reasons for splitting up Tyco was serving the customer better,” said Charlie LeBlanc, President of Security Services for FrontierMEDEX. “One of the dangers in consolidation is you start losing the customer and understanding what they want or need.”

Prior to Tyco's split, ADT Security Services acquired physical security information management (PSIM) provider Proximex in April. In the same month, Verint Systems also made a PSIM buy for Rontal Engineering Applications. As security systems handle more data, there is a clear need to aggregate it in management platforms.

UTC reorganized in September, combining security and fire with HVAC provider Carrier to become UTC Climate, Controls and Security Systems. The new business will be led by new President and CEO Geraud Darnis. Siemens also restructured in September, with a new Fire Safety and Security business unit made up of Life Cycle and Enterprise segments.

Pure-play video analytics providers were either acquired or eliminated this year. Vidient was in both categories, going under in January and then being acquired by Agilence in April. In August, Keeneo's 4-D analytics was sold to Digital Barriers for $2.8 million, diminishing the ranks of stand-alone analytics providers.

Of the VCA companies still in operation, ObjectVideo sued Bosch Security Systems, Sony and Samsung Techwin for patent infringement this year. While the defendants have countersued and the legal outcome is uncertain, the lawsuits make ObjectVideo look desperate. Even if ObjectVideo wins, it has lost credibility by alienating some of the biggest names in video surveillance.

GROWTH MARKETS
Public spending came back in 2011, with government projects and airports being among the most active vertical markets. “Due to the large number of airports across the U.S. and Europe, there is a constant need for retrofit as terminals get updated,” said Blake Kozak, Senior Market Analyst for IMS Research.

DVTel won a project for a major European airport with 1,200 cameras, along with a contract for the Mumbai airport this year. “We see new opportunities largely in emerging markets,” said Ami Amir, Executive VP of Marketing and Products, DVTel. “We had significant success in South Africa, Latin America, Russia and Asia. For us, India has much more activity than China.”

A military site in Afghanistan was one of Delta Scientific's biggest projects in 2011, using barriers and barricades to protect it from car and truck bombers, said David Dickinson, Senior VP of Delta Scientific. Its key regions were North America and the Middle East, with a focus on areas facing high risks from vehicular bombs. Many investments have been made in city surveillance, infrastructure and government buildings. “Government spending in Asia Pacific has been one of the key drivers for security revenues in 2011,” said Susan Sahayan, Research Analyst for Frost & Sullivan. “Railways, airports, highways and in-flight security are some of the key sectors within transportation driving the growth of video surveillance, access control and biometrics.”

Rising fuel prices are increasing demand for public transportation. “As we see an almost negative situation in the economy, we see a positive situation in public transport,” said David Gorshkov, CEO of Digital Grape. “There's an increased need for monitoring, to meet the demands of public transport for both road and rail.”

Threats from domestic and international terrorists around the world remain, making transportation a major security market. “In the public sector globally, we see the increase of security systems, whether they be access control or video surveillance,” Gorshkov said. “Government buildings are increasing their security, as well as educational installations.”

The Beijing metro chose a networked access control solution with card readers to enhance access management and overall security, said Simon Siew, MD for APAC, HID Global (an Assa Abloy company).

Infrastructure and government were among the company's top verticals for 2011. “Geographically, we have grown in India and China in the past year, as their economic environments have rebounded faster than most countries,” Siew said.

Corrections saw growth this year, with OnSSI installing systems at several Texas prisons. Each system includes more than 800 cameras. “OnSSI will be standardized throughout the Texas prison system's 114 facilities in the coming years, with new installations taking place as funding becomes available,” said Gadi Piran, President of OnSSI.

City surveillance also sees greater demand for scalable management. “There is increasing interest in separate control rooms to make better use of data citywide, such as transmission,” Gorshkov said. “There's interest in the consolidation of systems in various control centers, or PSIM.” [NextPage]

PRIVATE SECTOR
The commercial sector saw good movement in the past year. “The global economy trickles down to all spending, whether the government or private sector,” LeBlanc said. “The private sector is driving the spending more so than the government sector.”

Sports and leisure grew, such as athletic venues and stadiums. Dallmeier installed a multimegapixel solution for the Olympic Stadium in Berlin, which can seat more than 74,000 spectators, according to a prepared statement from the company.

In emerging countries such as Brazil, India and China, high growth can be found. “With the World Cup and Olympics to be held in Brazil in the coming years, the country is set to increase its capacity by about 85 percent,” Kozak said. “The number of hotel rooms is also expected to increase by nearly 40 percent, increasing demand for products such as electromagnetic locks. Qatar is also seeing strong growth in sports and leisure as well as other vertical markets, because of the need to secure both established and newly constructed infrastructure.”

Financial institutions witnessed increased demand. “Banking experienced moderate growth in 2011 despite the downturn, because of consolidation and the need for logical- physical access control,” Kozak said.

Retailers are also investing in security. “Retail, certainly supermarkets, are performing quite well, with refurbishment programs for main stores and new developments with new smaller ‘in-town' stores,” said Andrew Pigram, Technical Director at Norbain. “One of the first sectors to react to the downturn was retail in 2008, but we're starting to see a gentle recovery.”

Europe and North America are seeing retail growth. “As it turns out, it has been strong as retailers have an increased need to protect their assets,” said Paul Bodell, Business Development for IQinVision. “In some places, the bad economy or threat of a higher crime rate has accelerated investment.”

Another growth market is the industrial sector, such as energy and petrol. “We've done work in Brazil, Mexico, Chile, Columbia and several other countries,” said John Moss, CEO of S2 Security. “The nice thing about servicing a number of markets in Latin America and Asia is you have some protection from difficulties in any single market.”

Integrators focused on ROI for installations, which grew in 2011. “We saw a spike in 2010 and 2011 in power and utilities, particularly remote sites,” said Mark Gally, VP of Marketing for VideoIQ.

TECHNOLOGY TRENDS
As more markets have already reached the IP tipping point, standards become crucial to integrating multiple devices. ONVIF is by far the largest of the physical security groups, counting more than 300 members. However, the present version is limited to display. Support for each member's unique PTZ protocols, night vision controls or in-house analytics is still a way off.

Supporting generic functions is already a big step forward, but “standards” still lack a uniform guideline for image quality. “Standards provide a framework for performance criteria to be achieved by the various members,” Gorshkov said. “But ONVIF and PSIA are trade groups, not standards bodies. They are interconnect agreements between vendors.”

Installers and integrators should be more concerned about designing systems that deliver the proper imaging for user needs, rather than just looking at cost. “Integrators need to maintain an appropriate standard of quality, rather than leaving it in the hands of vendors,” Gorshkov said.

Some standards are drawn up by federal bodies, such as Homeland Security Presidential Directive-12 mandates for government identification. “The government has extended its influence on physical access initiatives, imposing tightened privacy standards and mandating secure-compound directives,” Siew said.

MANAGEMENT AND ANALYTICS
The migration to IP has yielded benefits for businesses. “The industry as a whole has embraced what technology can do to assist a corporation or entity in protecting their assets,” LeBlanc said. “It's a multiplier that compounds upon itself. There are much easier ways to integrate into a solution.”

The accessibility of smartphones and tablets is expected to drive home automation growth to reach a wider audience, according to Frost & Sullivan.

As IP yields business benefits, it sees strong growth. “We continue to see rapid adoption of IP technology across product categories,” said James Rothstein, Executive VP of Tri-Ed/Northern Video Distribution.

Edge devices did well, as the hardware and software are optimized to work together. Integrators can save time for setup and calibration, while differentiating with analytics. “It offers nice infrastructure savings and operator efficiency for search and presentation capabilities,” Gally said. “The continued adoption of analytics in the mainstream is a critical component in powering an overall system. You can optimize storage and empower people to do faster searches.”

Delivering ROI was a focus for manufacturers. VideoIQ launched its first business continuity rule for 24-hour ATM vestibules to detect sleeping vagrants, which can be a problem in cold climates. “They're concerned about customer safety and whether people can go in the ATM to do business,” Gally said. “We can track objects that go motionless for a long period of time and send an alarm. Banks are actually impacting their bottom line by making sure there's access to ATMs 24/7.”

Other providers are providing more value by offering more functionality, such as unlimited installs for VMS client software and incremental licenses by camera count. “OnSSI has reconfigured how the software platform goes to market,” Piran said. Its scalability provides upgrade opportunities for customers with cameras and severs at multiple sites. [NextPage]

VIDEO SURVEILLANCE
Network video may have reached its tipping point in several regions, but analog is far from dead. HD-SDI provides a midway point with HD video over analog cabling. “HD-SDI is only available in the U.K. through a limited number of suppliers, so it's not really launched or established yet,” Pigram said. “However, there's a lot of end user interest, and more manufacturers will be launching products towards the end of 2011.”

For network video provider IQinVision, it consolidated its M-JPEG and H.264 product lines for greater efficiency. “In 2011 we converted all our cameras to multistream,” Bodell said. “We now have the largest portfolio of H.264 cameras and consolidated part numbers. Since the market would not allow us to increase the price of the M-JPEG cameras, we are selling the multistream H.264/M-JPEG cameras for the price of M-JPEG cameras and letting the users select the compression in the field.”

This year 's multimegapixel cameras generated plenty of buzz at trade shows. “There is a trend to use high-megapixel cameras, in standard format and increasingly more specialist 180-degree/panoramic and 360-degree fish-eye technology to capture a complete view from a single camera,” Pigram said. “This is proving to be a valuable addition to many video surveillance systems and in some cases, customers prefer to use them compared to traditional fully functional domes.”

Among the high-megapixel solutions was a 51-megapixel multisensory system with a dozen lenses, capable of displaying background objects as clearly as ones in the foreground. “This makes it possible to identify people at a distance of 160 meters,” said Roland Feil, Sales Director for Dallmeier electronic.

UP IN THE CLOUD
More hosted offerings were launched in 2011, but not all sites have the infrastructure to support large bandwidth. “For the smaller commercial and residential sectors of the market, it's just starting and will grow in the next five years and expand to larger applications as greater bandwidth becomes available,” Pigram said. Norbain introduced a hosted access control solution, targeting multisite end-user companies.

And while megapixel counts might be climbing, few networks have the bandwidth to transmit enormous video files at real-time frame rates. “Distributed storage is a key component to intelligently manage data to a cloud service,” Gally said. “HD video into the cloud will require customers to invest so much in the infrastructure that it's hard to cost-justify.”

ACCESS CONTROL AND INTRUSION
Managing access can now be done through integration with other physical security systems, such as video door phones for remote monitoring. “The integration of video surveillance with biometrics is gaining traction,” Sahayan said. “This growth in biometrics is expected to create the need for end users to utilize more advanced surveillance systems, particularly IP systems, which will be more cost-effective as a security solution.”

Mobile devices will also feature near-field communications (NFC) for access control. “HID Global sees significant opportunities in taking NFC technology beyond cashless payment into new, complementary physical access control applications,” Siew said. “The industry has made great progress in moving payment applications onto NFC smartphones.”

The global intrusion alarm market is expected to reach $2.4 billion in 2011, according to IMS Research. Opportunities were mainly in retrofit activities, as new construction has slowed.

CHALLENGES
CHANNEL
Finding new opportunities was a top distributor target in 2011. “The economic slowdown has us focus even more on presenting ways for our customers to diversify into new product areas and revenue streams,” Rothstein said.

Network video channels have been tricky to navigate in recent years, as traditional distributors may not understand IP issues. However, IT resellers may know about networking, but lack security experience.

From the experience of 13-year-old IQinVision, security distributors are the way to go, particularly in the high-volume market or sites with less than 10 cameras. “In the early days, we focused on IT integrators,” Bodell said. “But more security channel dealers are becoming network-savvy. Three to four years ago, I would have picked IT as the channel that would win, because the security channel was not embracing IT. But with turnover, you get a younger generation of security integrators who understand networking, because they have grown up with it.”

While IP uptake is seeing more acceptance, education is still a challenge. “It's a fact that the end user and system integrators are exposed to new network solutions and don't know enough about IP,” Amir said.

ECONOMIC WOES
Challenges in 2011 were spending and economic difficulties. “Western Europe has been greatly impacted by the recession, namely Spain, Italy, Greece and the U.K.,” Kozak said. “As governments look to balance budgets, there could be a slowdown in growth. The Americas is forecast to see slow growth in 2011 as a result of the high growth that returned in 2010 following the economic recession. Despite rebounding, the growth could not be sustained. The EMEA region is only forecast to grow by 2 percent in 2011.”

Market uncertainty forced installers and end users to reconsider their security purchases, even if they were satisfied with how they performed. “Economic pressures have forced companies to either consider whether they need to spend money on features they don't really need or conversely that the system they buy delivers more: not just in the security arena, but potentially in new areas which will drive economic growth of the end user,” Pigram said. “This has driven a trend to two different purchasing dynamics — cost-effective video and integrated IP systems.”

Regional buying behavior has further compounded market troubles. “Low levels of awareness on the importance of security and the availability of cheap manpower in emerging countries such as Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines are restraining the adoption of security solutions,” Sahayan said. “However, this scenario is expected to change in the next few years, as end users begin to gain more exposure to surveillance technologies through trade shows, media advertising, as well as success stories.” [NextPage]

DRIVERS AND DIFFERENTIATORS
After a relatively calm year, companies are gearing up for a possible debt crisis. In the face of macroeconomic factors, a combination of innovation and responsiveness to customer needs enabled companies to beat the recession and weather the coming storm.

One way to survive is through continuous innovation. “The path we embarked on many years ago has proven to be correct,” Feil said. “We address all aspects of video security technology rather than concentrating on individual components.”

While R&D is not cheap, it can pay off. “Our competitors reduced their workforces during the recession,” Moss said. “We didn't do that, we hired through it. When the recession eased up, they didn't have enough people and we had a bunch of new products.”

Warranties support a highly innovative position with guaranteed quality. “Given the number of low-cost competitors, we've gotten business back from customers who had catastrophic product failures in the field,” Bodell said. “We always boasted the best products, and in 2011 we backed that up with a five-year warranty on our minidome and a three-year warranty for our professional line with on-camera recording and analytics.”

DVTel also launched a quality assurance program, providing a lifetime warranty for new products good for at least four years, Amir said.

CUSTOMIZATION
Tailoring solutions for specific applications benefits both manufacturers and customers. “Diversification related to multiple vertical markets is one way to ensure ongoing success,” Piran said. “It helps that OnSSI has a product that is versatile and useful in a variety of end-user environments, which allows us to focus on hot verticals without having to reengineer the system when the market shifts.”

One phenomenon this year was low-volume customizations. While this was previously unthinkable, economies of scale have enabled manufacturers to adjust products to customer specifications.

CUSTOMER FIRST
The goal of innovation and customization is to satisfy buyer demands. “Companies have to be consistent and focused on execution,” Amir said. “Focus on the customer.”

Continued engagement is about supporting user needs. “Our sales guys are with integrators every day,” Bodell said. “Product management talks to customers and gets feedback. Then we make a list of things, determine what's real in the long term and we invest in that. The simple way to say it is it's just the voice of the customer. You've just got to learn to listen to it.”

Extending the value of existing customer investments is crucial. “In the recession, we solved business problems for end customers and that allowed us to grow,” Gally said. “Our strategy and advice is to make sure solutions delivers a value-add to the channel partner as well as the customer.”

Customer satisfaction is not a new concept, but achieving it is easier said than done. Providing security and convenience at an affordable cost benefits all parties. As companies with a clear value proposition witnessed growth even after the market contracted, it proves that following best practices delivers real results.

Santa Fe Deploys Messoa Video for City Surveillance

Santa Fe Deploys Messoa Video for City Surveillance

Editor / Provider: Messoa | Updated: 11/29/2011 | Article type: Residential & Consumer

The city of Santa Fe is the 9th largest city in Argentina. Located near railroad terminals and ports, it is an important commercial and transportation center. Colonial buildings mixed with a bustling night life make Santa Fe a popular tourist destination. Santa Fe continues to grow and is getting more and more prosperous every day.

With a population of 450,000 and growing, city officials became concerned about security issues. The city was experiencing a growth in theft, vandalism and assault. One particular area of concern was downtown. Cameras were needed with the aim of enhancing security. They would have to be able to monitor the city live; including traffic control. Also, they would be used to track crimes and obtain video evidence. These cameras needed to be tough enough to withstand vandals and harsh conditions. Consequently, MESSOA was chosen as the preferred one in order to build a safer city environment.

One of the cameras chosen was speed dome security camera with low lux capabilities. A Sony CCD, 128X Wide Dynamic Range and Day/Night function with ICR ensures 24 hour monitoring in even the most difficult conditions. It uses a 36X optical motorized Sony zoom lens which allows it to capture details from long distances. Furthermore, high quality construction and a 750kg Vandal Proof and IP66/67 Weatherproof housing with heater and blower ensure that it works in all conditions.

The other camera was MESSOA IR camera. The camera is a security camera with IR LED and low lux capabilities. MESSOA Lumii II technology enhances sensitivity to deliver crisp images in even total darkness. It has 540 TVL resolution and a flexible 3.3-12mm IR-corrected varifocal DC Iris lens for different installation requirements. External focus controls make adjusting the varifocal lens simple. It is housed in a compact die-cast aluminum body with tempered glass, making it suitable for outdoor applications. A cable management bracket allows easy installation and maintenance.

The MESSOA dome camera is the ideal choice for the most challenging applications while the MESSOA IR camera is ideal for a wide range of indoor/outdoor video surveillance systems. The cameras were linked directly to the 911 system. Feeds from cameras on the street can be directly accessed by 911 dispatchers. Dispatchers can keep an eye on the crowds of shoppers and respond to emergencies within seconds. The cameras help gather evidence, improves response times and is a crime deterrent. They are fully operational and have demonstrated excellent functionality, performance and reliability.

Technology Trends: IP, Cloud and Intelligence

Technology Trends: IP, Cloud and Intelligence

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 11/23/2011 | Article type: Hot Topics

IP Fallout
IP offers tremendous benefits, but presents a high technology threshold to cross over. “The market is highly fragmented,” Holtenhoff said. “As the world moves to IT-fication, we're going to see shakeout.”

Scaling the IP learning curve can be lucrative but difficult. “Since the cost of entry to IP-based security is higher than it used to be with analog, there will be fewer players in the future as IP technology becomes more advanced,” Clocher said. “Only a few companies will be able to master this technology to the degree needed in the video security space.”

However, a steep learning curve for IP does not mean the security industry will wind up in the hands of a single company. "Our industry is specialist," said Charlie LeBlanc, President of Security Services for FrontierMEDEX, a US consultant.

"For a large company, it consolidates all that and reduces the ‘speciality' for efficiency. It's hard under one umbrella to be efficient and active with the client base."

More Than You Bargained For
The migration from analog to IP means security is no longer an isolated system but a business enabler. “What we learned in the past few years is people understand the value of IP-based solutions,” said Bill Stuntz, VP and GM of the Physical Security Business Unit for Cisco Systems. “You get information on the basic situation and better communication for first responders.”

As security goes IP, network administrators deal with more security management, introducing a new dynamic involving more stakeholders. “Over the next five years, the convergence of security and business operations management will in crease several-fold,” Koh said. “Business cost is increasing globally, and well -managed companies are on a constant lookout to improve processes.” The security platform, with a renewed focus on understanding more diverse customer needs and solving their business problems, will be key to achieving this.

More companies now extend the value of their offerings by addressing business efficiencies, not just security needs. When solutions not only improve security but also enhance the bottom line or business processes with concrete metrics, security proves itself to be a smart investment. The IP world operates on a larger scale, requiring a better handle on a wider range of organizational needs and “turf war.” “IP has greater benefits for multiple sites,” Stuntz said. “Those small sites will hold onto DVRs and stand-alone systems longer than large customers. The opportunity for growth is on the IT side.”

IP offers the ability to specialize through more data, for better management and know-how. “IP and integration have been around for a long time now, often used but never completely understood or embraced,” Hussain said. “Fortunately, time and money have been invested in creating systems that take the complexity out of integrations, allowing physical security information to be aggregated and managed. We see huge growth here in the next few years as organizations look to harness the power of these systems.”

Smarter integration promises to make security better. “The first set of the value proposition delivered to the customer is more effective security systems,” Stuntz said. “We can be tying the security systems into operations in a store. The same cameras used to protect the store at night could look at traffic or shoplifting patterns in the day. Customers can get multiple uses of the cameras, spread costs throughout department sand accelerate deployment.”

IP goes beyond securing an enterprise, producing a result that was not previously possible. “The same hardware, software and databases that comprise an access control system can be used in a manufacturing setting, for example, to integrate with plant automation systems in order to ensure that the right number of qualified personnel is logged in at assembly workstations,” McCaughey said. “IP makes this integration possible, achieving a new result that impacts the customer's bottom line.” Such business-security integration requires understanding customer operations and business requirements deeply.

Take retail. Management may be interested in understanding customer and employee behavior, or improving operational efficiency. “The key is minimizing the time and equipment on-site, while making it easy for a broader range of users to access the information they need on a range of devices — Web, mobile and so on — in a range of formats,” Brown said.

IP demand will grow in both the public and private sectors. “We see a decent shift from analog to IP-based security, and that's because, as SMBs and enterprises grow particularly in emerging markets, they realize the advantage of having safety and security based on IP as opposed to analog,” Kan said. “Governments are taking stringent measures to enhance security infrastructure. Additionally, large enterprises, transportation and educational institutions are investing in securing their premises from external threats.” [NextPage]

Technology Trends
As IP defines the future of security, technology developments are reshaped as well. PSIM, VCA and cloud-based services are three things that will influence the industry, if not the world.

PSIM
PSIM as a term is relatively new, but has gained greater recognition in the past five years. Today, PSIM is in the early growth stage of its product life cycle, having passed through the development and market introduction stages but not yet reaching maturity, Hussain said.

Several criteria mark the early growth phase. First, increased sales have resulted in cost reduction from economies of scale. “Globally, the number of PSIM deployments have increased significantly over the last year,” Hussain said. “There are currently in excess of 400 deployments worldwide, and this number increases every week.”

Second, there is greater competition in this space. While not all solutions offer the same degree of integration, it reflects the market's need for true PSIM solutions, Hussain said.

Intelligent Video
The rise of HD imaging makes intelligent video all the more relevant. While more pixels may not necessarily make the algorithms more accurate, basic motion detection could significantly reduce storage costs by only recording in HD when something happens. If nothing occurs, the camera can record at a lower resolution.

VCA does not occur in a vacuum, as it requires some way to report an event. “Our view is that the algorithm is only half of the equation,” Holtenhoff said. “The ability to get benefit out of that is a VMS that leverages metadata.”

Analytics help make data more usable, processing information from cameras and storage. “What you have is a big warehouse of data, without the ability to search through the data or analyze it in real time,” Holtenhoff said. “It's like going to the library to find a book on Shakespeare, but there's no coding tool.”

Intelligent video is clearly a trend, enabling a camera to count people or monitor traffic. “You have one product, and if the processor is smart and flexible enough, you can generate multiple uses,” Clocher said. “One analogy is in the morning, I use my iPhone to listen to music, then call my customers when at the office, then in the evening my kids turn it into a gaming console. Finally, I use it to read my favorite newspaper. It's exactly the same for cameras. It can be for security; then you have an intelligent app in the camera. You can then differentiate and add features to the camera, thanks to software. This is what's happening today.”

Cloud
The cloud concept is simple enough to understand, but devilishly tricky in the details. Present iterations are mostly private cloud offerings from vendors teaming up with alarmmonitoring companies for hosted video, access control or more holistic management solutions.

While there is palpable excitement, not everyone is convinced the cloud is the way to go. “Cloud and hosted services are OK for consumer business models, but not for professional ones,” Santambrogio said. Megapixel video over a wide-area network would not be practical, limiting use for enterprise users.

In his experience, customers prefer on-site storage for bandwidth and privacy reasons. “People don't like to store this kind of data in an unsecured data center,” Santambrogio said. In sensitive markets such as Italy, privacy would be the main argument against public cloud deployments.

The hype about cloud is offset by practical concerns. “Cloud is talked about, but the adoption rate is not as broad as people are saying,” Holtenhoff said. “There's a lot of pulp, but it hasn't delivered yet.”

While the kinks are being worked out, there is no denying that cloud deployments reduce upfront equipment cost. “We absolutely believe in a future with more video surveillance being delivered as a service based on a hosted model,” Mauritsson said. Axis will continue to roll out its hosted offering in more markets through partners.

CNL was among the first vendors to offer SaaS in 2004, which required a significant upfront investment in time and effort. “We still see them as an option for a large number of organizations, but this is still a real challenge for the enterprise-level solutions we are deploying through our channel partners today,” Hussain said. “There are no major technology barriers in the way, but how to operate, who will operate and how to deploy are still significant unknowns that need to be decided for this to become a reality.”

Honeywell has launched private cloud services in the U.S. through its various offerings. “Cloud is a technology trend for the central service model,” said Jerry Jia, Technology Director for APAC, Honeywell Security. “Every day, millions of events from customer panels go through the Honeywell private cloud.”

For Sielox, its hosted access control services have been a sustainable business model, especially for the company's business partners, said Karen Evans, President. Managed platforms eliminate the need for full-time IT professionals or investment in new hardware.

Cloud will figure prominently in the future. “A lot of excitement has been generated in the area of Web connectivity of field devices, such as sensors, based around the much discussed concept of the Internet of Things,” said Clemens Krebs, Head of Marketing Communications for Bosch Security Systems. Key standards bodies include the IP Smart Object Alliance and the Internet Engineering Task Force.

As the security industry shifts from explosive growth to a steadier pace, it is buoyed by companies committed to the long term. The recession proved that smart companies in step with customer needs and a continued R&D investment could help survive lean times. Security will also evolve into a business asset, creating lasting value. Overcoming the IP learning curve will be mandatory for success in the future, which in turn offers tremendous benefits. Convergence, change and customer service are the way forward for those willing to win.

Targeting Emerging Markets and Innovations

Targeting Emerging Markets and Innovations

Editor / Provider: The Editorial Team | Updated: 11/23/2011 | Article type: Hot Topics

Targeting Emerging Markets
The seemingly recovering yet shaky global economic conditions required security companies to tighten their belts. Top performers found success in emerging markets, and aimed to increase market presence in these regions through partnerships, acquisitions or new offices.

Assa Abloy saw 2 percent growth in EMEA in 2010, up from a -12 percent drop in 2009. The Americas division fell -2 percent due to the lack of new construction, which was better than its -19 percent slump in 2009. Asia Pacific saw strong growth in China, Korea, Australia and New Zealand at 14 percent growth, up from -1 percent in 2009.

Asia continues to be a growth powerhouse. For network camera leader Axis, its revenue breakdown by market in the Americas, EMEA and Asia were 47, 43 and 10 percent, respectively; growth by region was 26, 26 and 40 percent.

The ongoing shift in economic power towards emerging markets is a particularly important trend for Bosch. A new hub in China was established last year, adding to the existing 14 sales offices in this market with an additional 10 planned for this year. Bosch is also taking this strategy to increase market presence in other important emerging markets, such as Latin America.

RCG even restructured its board of directors and senior management to focus more on developing the Southeast Asia market.

Public Spending Steals the Show,Again
The biggest verticals in security are infrastructural assets that are exposed to an increasing number of risks, such as those from terrorist attacks.

This includes utilities, governmental buildings, public areas and transportation hubs. These verticals represent more than 50 percent of the total security market worldwide.

Infrastructure projects are key drivers for the high growth rates in emerging markets. This is most evident in the transportation and public safety segments, as shown by the Safe City initiative in China.

Renewed Focus on Customer Needs
Top performers continued to invest in product development, some even investing more. As the competition continues to heat up, companies are putting more effort into R&D to stay ahead of the game. New technologies and standards, as well as increased scrutiny from end users, can make or break a company if it just sits back and smiles.

Assa Abloy's product development focuses on increased customer value, aiming to improve cost-efficiency yet maintain higher quality and increase functionality. HID Global increased its activities in value analysis, which has led to significant cost savings in both the existing product range and the production of new products.

Companies offering high-end products began to cater to the midrange market, such as the new Honeywell SMB product line. These offerings increase cost-effectiveness. On the other hand, Hikvision expanded its offerings to be more comprehensive, including products that compete in the high-end market.

Hikvision recognized the dropping profit margins for low-cost DVRs, and did not invest significant capital in this space. Instead, it shifted its focus to complete end-to-end solutions. The strategy proved worthwhile, and it won them significant government projects in China.

Avigilon also provides an end-to-end video solution to customers, while each component in the system can also be sold separately. These components are versatile enough to be configured and deployed in many different applications. Avigilon also sells accessories to complement its system.

A common product platform with fewer, integrated components enables enhanced customer value and lower costs. It also raises the technology level of traditional products and offers customers higher security and better functionality.

Efficient product development with a strong customer focus is the strongest driver of organic growth. A complete solution gives customers a single point of accountability, ensuring confidence that their project will roll out smoothly with optimum performance and stability. Furthermore, customers are unwilling to invest heavily in security amidst economic uncertainties, which creates a demand for scalable systems with lower upfront costs.

Utilizing New Technologies
The proliferation of mobile devices and their ever expanding capability create opportunities to provide more value to customers, such as mobile phone payment systems, remote monitoring on smartphones and hotel access control solutions.

Mobotix introduced remote access control functions through integration with mobile devices. As companies struggle to balance cost and value, taking advantage of new technologies can be key for growth in a shaky economy.

Assa Abloy introduced RFID and wireless technology to hotel management, allowing guests to open door locks via contactless card soreven NFC-enabled mobile phones. While new hotel construction is slow, this new technology creates strong demand for retrofit systems.

RCG believes RFID technology can be utilized in various aspects of daily life, which creates numerous business opportunities. It is currently involved in an “Internet of Things” projects in Xiangyang, China.

Nedap Security Management also sees great potential in RFID technologies, as more applications rely on it. Accurate reading of RFID tags is more important than ever, and Nedap invested heavily to develop a new generation of RFID readers that allow RFID tags to be accurately read in even the most difficult conditions.

As Jerry Maguire so eloquently put it in the 1996 film, “Help me, help you.” This is probably how customers today feel. With the economic downturn, customers began to reevaluate their options to get the most bang for their buck. In shaky economic conditions, customers would rather spend on a great product that provides true value and scalability, rather than one that merely gets the job done for the time being.

An investment in security itself may be hard to justify, as the perceived threat is generally not as evident in the commercial world. However, vendors have seen success in providing for targeted markets specific solutions that also integrate into business operations.

The bottom line is that customers who have the resources are willing to spend when it makes sense. Vendors must realize that customer demand is more important than anything, and a gazillion new features do not amount to anything when the customers do not need them. Simple as it may sound, listening to the customer is something many companies find difficult to do.

In addition, factors like industry standards are reshaping and redefining the security industry in the form of convergence and consolidation. In the coming years, the company that can provide a truly integrated solution will rise above the competition, regardless of economic conditions.

New and different approaches and business models are emerging. More so than ever before, companies need to adapt and adopt effective methods that reduce costs, increase productivity and improved core competencies.

American Long-Haul Trucking Facility Deploys Avigilon Video Management for Staff Safety

American Long-Haul Trucking Facility Deploys Avigilon Video Management for Staff Safety

Editor / Provider: Avigilon | Updated: 11/17/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

Xpress Cargo staff seamlessly manages the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system using the Avigilon Control Center network video management software (NVMS) with High-Definition Stream Management (HDSM) technology. The commercial trucking company installed Avigilon HD cameras ranging from 1 MP to 8 MP to monitor activity at its main entrances and exits both inside and out, along with all major traffic areas to ensure maximum protection. Additional Avigilon HD cameras were installed in the parking lot to protect docked trailers and trucks from theft and damage, while several Avigilon HD dome cameras provide complete coverage of the warehouse. An Avigilon HD dome camera monitors the company's repair shop and outside employee lounge area. The company also added audio recording functionality in the dispatch office, repair shop, and drivers lounge area for added safety. Storing two weeks of continuous surveillance video, the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system is monitored live around the clock.

By installing Avigilon HD dome cameras, Xpress Cargo was able to achieve greater coverage with fewer cameras and lower installation costs. With indisputable evidence in hand, the company has also been able to reduce liability costs by 15 percent. The Avigilon high-definition surveillance system provides complete oversight of all trucks being loaded to ensure the proper handling of client goods and to confirm that safety and freight handling requirements are being met, helping to boost overall operational efficiencies. In addition, Xpress Cargo employees now enjoy a heightened sense of security while on the job.

With a fleet of more than 150 trucks, 700 trailers, and 25 years in the business, Indiana-based Xpress Cargo offers consolidated freight and expedited transportation services across the United States. Specializing in team transportation of dry goods, refrigerated goods, and specialty freight, Xpress Cargo manages up to 375 trucks on the road at any given time, traveling from coast to coast. To protect its valuable assets, facilitate cargo management, and maintain employee safety, Xpress Cargo has deployed the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system at its 20,000 square foot

Industrial Facilities Adopting Advanced Security for Efficiency Gains

Industrial Facilities Adopting Advanced Security for Efficiency Gains

Editor / Provider: a&s International | Updated: 11/15/2011 | Article type: Commercial Markets

The industrial sector was negatively impacted by the economic downturn due to lower consumer spending. Production of automobiles and primary metals dropped 30 percent or more during the recession. The early 2011 earthquake in Japan was no help, as it caused shortages of critical components in various sectors.

These crises emphasize the need of facility managers to have more efficient management practices, which are enabled through the marriage of automation and security. This approach makes for a safer and more productive work environment, yet also has significant cost-saving benefits .

China has the strongest growth in industrial estate development, with fast growth also witnessed in neighboring India and Vietnam. Singapore and Malaysia are also having a healthy number of industrial estate developments, said Patrick Lim, Director of Sales and Marketing for Ademco Far East. “The key difference in most of the current industrial estates is the usage, and thus the value, of the development. There is a shift of focus to higher value use for these industrial estates.”

“We are seeing a 30- to 40-percent increase in security spending in these new industrial estates,” Lim continued. “However, compared to the older industries, the new types of businesses occupying these spaces are in high-tech manufacturing, R&D, energy and high-value services; which are much higher in value.”

Gone are the dirty and messy impressions of these developments, Lim said. “The new industrial estates are built for high-value businesses. Thus the emphasis is on good security and technology to add value to their business.”

Entering the Perimeter
Starting from the very outer rim of an industrial plant, there are several considerations for site access. It depends on whether the site is closed or open. “Closed sites have perimeter fencing that protects the entire site and its estates. The site could also be open, in which case the site can be freely walked around and physical protection is not present until you get to the building,” said Ian Hodgson, Regional MD for North U.K., ADT Fire and Security. “However, both types share similarities in how a design is secured. The design has to be based on two things, pedestrian access and vehicular access, which are approached separately.”

For vehicular access, there are generally several groups. There are the staff members who work in the facility, visitors driving to the site, people in the supply chain bringing in raw materials and, finally, people dispatching the finished goods.

An increasing number of sites are beginning to adopt ALPR to automate vehicular access, Hodgson said. “They can discern which group the vehicle belongs to. The security system grants access rights according to that information and, using information display systems, guide the vehicle to areas within the site. This helps automate traffic control and directional control, reducing the need for human resources.”

For example, there could be an external gate which grants access according to information obtained by the ALPR system. Information boards guide drivers through the most direct route to their destination. There could also be other gates and barriers along the way, which are opened according to the access rights of the vehicle.

Video surveillance that utilizes intelligence is used to monitor workflow and the direction in which people are walking around the site.

“When anomalies occur, there might be a reason to investigate,” Hodgson said. This reduces the number of guards needed to patrol the site. [NextPage]

Granting Access
Heading into the building itself, access to the building is allowed or denied based on a person's credentials. The greatest demands for access control solutions lie in time and attendance management, entry and exit control, and parking facility monitoring, said Jiangong Ding, Industry Director for Hikvision Digital Technology.

Access solution requirements can include almost every variety of readers and credentials on the market, said Kevin McCaughey, VP of Security Solutions, Buildings Business, Schneider Electric. “Specific use cases spell out which readers or credentials are required in a given circumstance.”

The type of access control used within the facility depends on the aperture, Hodgson said. “It depends on whether it's a person or vehicle, for internal or external access, whether access needs to be both ways, person-by- person, or can have many people move through at once.” For example, pedestrian access to the site may be limited by swipe cards and turnstiles, which allows the system to know if a person is on- or off-site. Closer to the building itself, there might be a simple door lock mechanism or another form of turnstile to restrict access to one person at a time. It all depends on the usage of the building.

In addition, more users are migrating towards biometric readers as they become more affordable and reliable. “Tokens can be shared among staff members, while biometric data is much more difficult to pass around,” Hodgson said. “Some clients require biometrics to create a foolproof security system.” While video verification coupled with access control tokens help in this regard, it is a more expensive solution.

The two most common biometric readers in industrial settings are fingerprint and retinal. “Facial recognition is currently still on the more expensive side of biometrics, as it involves a larger area of view using video and other technologies and a database for lookups and comparisons,” Hodgson continued.

“From an affordability perspective, fingerprint readers are preferred. However, technology is constantly changing and improving, and access control solutions that contain data and images of users can be related to by video systems. There are some entrylevel systems of that nature, but that technology is still quite embryonic.”

Furthermore, there is an increased demand for centrally managed access control systems. "In particular, customers who need to control several sites rather than just the one building require a multisite solution that can be distributed geographically and at the same time can be centrally monitored and administered,” said Markus Niederberger, Head of Marketing Support for Fire Safety and Security, Siemens Building Technologies.

Some customers require a fully centralized system management. “Others prefer a mix of centralized and distributed management,” Niederberger said. “Typically, these customers also require system redundancy, a next-to-zeroapplication downtime, the ability to interface to legacy components as well as the integration with their IT and HR systems to optimize the business workflows.” [NextPage]

Keeping an Eye on Processes
The use of video cameras on the production line enables real-time monitoring of the entire production process, Ding said. “It is also possible now to monitor staff members for performance, as well as compliance to regulations and company policy. When something goes wrong, the manager can remotely instruct or alert staff members to ensure problems are resolved quickly.”

Furthermore, video surveillance allows a single person to monitor several locations without having to be physically present, whereas in the past, one supervisor was needed to watch each location, Ding said. This drastically reduces the manpower needed for specialized tasks.

Machine Vision
Machine vision cameras can also be utilized to monitor the production line for quality issues. There are two differences between security cameras and machine vision cameras, said Hardy Mehl, Director of IP Business for Basler. “For machine vision, there is a very controlled environment, which means there is stable lighting and the camera looks at very defined objects. The camera or video system does not have to work in challenging light conditions. This is a big difference from the security world, where you always have the sun coming up or shades or reflections, so security cameras are more optimized to changing, dynamic environments.” The other is compression, as all network cameras use compression algorithm such as M-JPEG or H.264. “Typically in the industrial automation world, raw data is transmitted,” Mehl said. “This is a big difference that has implications on which interface to use between the camera and the PC. In the industrial world, you need much higher bandwidth since the data is not compressed. The computer is looking at the image, and you need the absolute best quality in terms of signal-to-noise ratio to calculate and get every little detail.”

Security cameras are different, as every detail is not essential or practical. “You need high-resolution, but typically you need compressed images that are just good enough, and you need lower bandwidth because you store for a long time,” Mehl said. “In the industrial environment, you don't transmit live streams, but rather you shoot images. You make snapshots and you transmit the snapshots in very high frequencies.” The two types of cameras are not interchangeable in most cases, but due to the technological development and market development, there are some applications that overlap. “The performance of network cameras, in some cases, is good enough for industrial purposes,” Mehl said. “For example, they are cheaper or give an advantage. However, in most cases, there are really two different demands on the customer side.”

Bringing Disparate Systems Together
One clear management level trend regarding access control, and security in general, involves manufacturers taking a holistic approach to access control technology, processes and policies to protect their most essential operations. “The need for a global approach is driven by the high level of acquisition activity among manufacturers over the last 10 years and the rise in risk and threat levels these companies face,” McCaughey said. “From a security perspective, acquiring companies also means acquiring their security infrastructure, policies and their risk profile. As the chief security officer, anything more than one security infrastructure and set of security operating policies and processes builds inherent risk into your business. There is more to manage and more potential holes in your security perimeter.”

Adding Video to Access Control
Integrating access control, security management systems and video surveillance creates significant efficiency gains in industrial and manufacturing environments, said Aaron Kuzmeskus, Director of Security Channel Development, Buildings Business, Schneider Electric.

For example, access cards used in combination with visual verification of the cardholder enable quicker throughput of workers without requiring someone to check ID badges, Niederberger said. “This is applicable at the security perimeter of a plant and within the plant itself.”

Video surveillance enables security operations to have eyes on an event, even when they are not physically present. This manifests itself in two ways, Kuzmeskus said. “One is the ability to assess quicker an alarm event or situation, and a safer manner of assessment in areas where dangerous substances or machinery be may be in use.”

Secondarily, video verification at access points can lessen the financial burden of stationing guards at sensitive entry or egress portals or to physically verify that credentials are being used properly, Kuzmeskus continued. While biometrics provides good identification, it can be problematic in areas that require personal protective equipment, such as gloves and face shields.

Integration between access control and video enhances productivity, as it can corroborate staff access records with video footage. A common example of poor productivity is staffers taking frequent smoke breaks while claiming to be carrying out other tasks, Lim said. “Another example I came across is for a sterilization room, where a customer had utilized our system to control. According to company policy, the time needed for staff to be sterilized prior to entering a clean room environment. However, some staff members deliberately shortened their sterilization period. As the staff are all wearing suits, without both records for exit access and video information, it would be difficult to determine which staff members violated company policy.” [NextPage]

Adding Video to Perimeter Protection
Video aids perimeter protection systems in several ways. “Overt video surveillance cameras present an aura of security by deterring potential intruders intent on gaining unauthorized entry to a facility,as they will be aware their actions are being observed and potentially recorded,” Kuzmeskus said.

In addition, thermal cameras can be used to supplement perimeter fences, requiring less cameras yet reducing the number of false positives. With a thermal camera you are able to reach longer distances, reducing the need to place standard cameras on the fence itself, said Ron Petrie, Director of Sales for Vumii. "Thermal imaging provides supplemental support for the security system, covering locations that do not have adequate lighting."

Using the philosophy of “deter, detect, delay, respond,” overt video surveillance cameras present an aura of security, whereas a site without dense surveillance coverage would be an easier target. “This can be leveraged further as a detection method with the addition of simple analytics. A video trip-wire can establish a virtual perimeter beyond a physical fence of property line, creating a greater setback distance, and increasing the available time to respond to a pending event,” Kuzmeskus said. “Video is another key enabler of virtual guard tours, allowing for fewer roving guards, quicker tour times and reduced guard fatigue.”

Cameras with video analytics deployed for perimeter protection solutions can help deter and provide early detection of some potential security breaches, agreed Gary Tan, APAC Head of Systems Solution Group, Bosch Security Systems. “This would reduce or do away the needs for physical patrolling around the perimeter. Depending on the site condition, one common application includes virtual perimeter lines or areas crossing covering a wide geographical area for early detection.”

For some large sites, it is too expensive and inefficient to deploy a great deal of manpower to protect the premises. Thus a good perimeter protection system, combining fence intrusion detection and intelligent video systems, is useful to supplement manpower. More importantly, it is proven that humans are not good at maintaining concentration for prolonged periods of time, Lim said. “We have had a bad experience with a public transport operator who simply refused to employ better systems to protect their transportation depots,” Lim said. “Eventually, disaster struck. Intruders breached their perimeter and vandalized their transport, resulting in public outcry and much embarrassment to the company.”

With VCA built into the cameras, fewer patrols are needed. “The verification of the alarm or event could be assessed and remotely evaluated first without the need to dispatch security personnel,” Tan said. “This increases productivity per staff member and lowers reliance on manpower.”

Perimeter protection and video analytic systems are also especially helpful for remote locations where there is no real need for manpower, Lim said. “One of the services that we provide is to remotely manage access and verify activities with video for customers with remote locations. However in most cases, it is usually a combination of manpower, systems and remote services. By reducing the high dependence on labor, this manpower can be diverted to engage more meaningful tasks. Contrary to the many unfounded fears, this will not lead to fewer jobs, but more meaningful careers.” [NextPage]

Customers Watching Too Much TV
Customers are often introduced to advanced systems through Hollywood productions. This raises their expectations of what a security system can provide.

Some clients ask for fully automated systems, wishing to completely eliminate human factors. “This is not practical with the current level of technology,” Ding said. “Any system will need a management platform that requires humans to maintain and operate. While a security system can greatly reduce a facility's reliance on manpower, humans cannot be entirely replaced.”

Some customers do not understand that manpower is still needed to manage alarms and to evaluate the response; access control and video can only tell you something happened, said Mo Hess, Director, Business Development, Global Security, Buildings Business, Schneider Electric. Another common request is for the ability to control and track who enters the site while not impacting the throughput of people, said.

“However, this would conflict with the initial goal of preventing multiple entries using one card,” Hess said.

“We always try to educate the customers so they can understand the solutions and technologies proposed,” Lim said. “If the customers simply refuse to adopt a more realistic expectation, then we will have to walk away from the business.”

The effects of television shows like “CSI” give users the impression that access control and video can track someone's movements inside a facility with time stamping of the movement, Hess said. “With video, the impression is that you can blow up an image and it will not be pixelated. Also, the ability of ‘facial recognition' to identify individuals is just not there yet.”

Furthermore, because so many add-on products claim to be “plug and play,” customers do not always understand that software changes could still be required in their security system, Hess continued.

Getting the Best Results
The best results are achieved when the consultant or specifier works hand-in-hand with the integrator during both the design process and the deployment to ensure a seamless transformation from the prior system to the new system — one that functions as needed and performs as expected, Kuzmeskus said. Each contributes their expertise: the consultant often has better knowledge of the customer's business objectives, while the integrator generally knows more about the capabilities of the specified components.

Most cases involve some degree of customization to an existing solution. For example, camera positioning often needs to be optimized for the best point of view, Kuzmeskus said. “In addition, dramatic improvements in video quality can lead to camera upgrade requirements. In other cases, a facility may have a perimeter that is adjacent to inaccessible or dangerous terrain, such as a refinery bordering a swamp area containing alligators and poisonous snakes. PTZ or thermal imaging cameras can augment the existing video systems to reduce the number times a guard enters that environment to assess an alarm, or in many cases, remove that dangerous area from a physical guard tour and transition it to a video guard tour.”

The integration between automation and security is always a dilemma, Lim said. “Unless there are real benefits in cost savings or functionality improvements, the integration tends to be cosmetic only.” The next part of our coverage explores efficiency gains enabled by the integration of automation and security.

ImageWare Systems and GCR Partner for Biometric Identity Systems in Airports

ImageWare Systems and GCR Partner for Biometric Identity Systems in Airports

Editor / Provider: ImageWare Systems | Updated: 11/9/2011 | Article type: Infrastructure

ImageWare Systems, a leading developer of identity management solutions providing biometric, secure credential and law enforcement technologies, has teamed with GCR & Associates, to provide secure biometric identity solutions to the U.S. Transportation Industry.

Many airports are contemplating major technological upgrades to the security and credentialing capabilities of their facilities and the GCR/ImageWare team has been created specifically to address this requirement. The companies are currently collaborating on several identified aviation projects.

“We have selected ImageWare for this most strategic venture because of its extensive history and capability in developing and implementing biometric identity management products and technologies,” says Phillip Brodt, VP of GCR. “The combination of the unique and specialized core patented technologies provided by IWS when coupled with GCR's total system development capabilities make our team the leader in this market segment.”

"ImageWare is delighted to be working with GCR, a company with a high level of expertise and experience within the aviation sector,” says Chuck AuBuchon, VP of Business Development for ImageWare. “GCR has been developing and integrating solutions for its airport clients for several decades. We are presently finalizing the contract for our first joint project and look forward to announcing the details as soon as they are completed.”

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