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EMEA market: balancing between security and privacy

EMEA market: balancing between security and privacy

One unique feature about the European market, aside from a constant need to protect against criminal and terrorist activities, is that it’s really into privacy. There are privacy laws and regulations dictating how personal data is to be gathered and used, and failure to compliance results in hefty fines. As a result security companies come up with solutions to address that need.

“What we are seeing in Europe is workers' rights and privacy laws becoming more prominent. For instance in some countries such as Germany, it's getting to the point where we're told that workers cannot be recorded in an establishment to protect against their privacy,” said Karen Sangha, Field Marketing Manager for Security Solutions at Panasonic.

To address that, Panasonic has a people masking technology that generates two feeds, one with people masked and the other unmasked. Only those with access rights or the permission to do so, for example investigators, can access the unmasked feed.

“We also have an application called Moving Object Removal (MOR), which has been used in warehouse operations,” Sangha said. “This function allows the camera to monitor products on the conveyor belt, but also has the ability to mask moving objects and conceal static areas that should remain confidential for example recordings of the workers.”

Mark Clifton, President of Products and Solutions at SRI Identity, offers a similar observation. “In some countries they don't allow private companies to collect biometrics and store them in a central database. If they're going to do biometric they have to basically put it on the national ID card,” he said. “It’s not a problem for us … we can take a card and read the biometric and use that to match. It’s just that it’s different than U.S. or UAE, where they are centralizing the databases.”

A strong emphasis on privacy has led to stepped up cybersecurity as users protect video or personal data against hacking or intrusion. This has gained importance as Europe, like other regions throughout the world, is seeing its security migrating more and more to IP. “The adoption of IP technology has definitely been a catalyst for growth. You now see a lot of manufacturers creating products that utilize the network,” said Dan Drayton, International Sales Manager at Paxton.

With IP becoming more widespread, cybersecurity becomes a more imminent concern. “Cybersecurity is a looming threat to people, across all industries and in our domestic life. Historically, when you install a surveillance system, you’re securing people and premises. But what about securing the device itself?” asked Atul Rajput, Regional Director for Northern Europe with Axis Communications.

Vendors are therefore working to make their products more resistant to cyber threats. “Axis have released a camera hardening guide, which is guide highlighting some best practices to consider when installing network video products. Axis uses the SANS Top 20 Critical Security Controls as a baseline for its hardening guide. We have multiple layers of security from password protection to IP filtering to encryption. The process of securing a video security system – or hardening it – is an increasingly necessary one for security installers to understand.” Rajput said.

Genetec, meanwhile, implements digital certificates and the latest encryption standards on its Security Center unified platform. “There's a lot of concern around cyber threats and attacks on systems, for example cameras presenting backdoor into a network. Genetec is building increased levels of security in to our solution to try to prevent would-be attackers from using our platform as a spring board into a customer’s network,” said Simon Cook, Sales Engineering Manager at Genetec.

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