What to consider when integrating video and access control?

What to consider when integrating video and access control?
More and more, video surveillance and access control are migrating towards IP. This results in various benefits, one being easier integration between the two. Currently, there are different ways to integrate both systems, each with pros and cons.
 
That was according to a recent technology note by Kintronics titled "How to Integrate Door Access and IP Camera Systems."
 
According to the note, integration of video and access control is doubtlessly beneficial to users. “Door access control and IP camera systems provide security by themselves. When the two systems are integrated, they provide a higher level of security and safety,” it said.
 
There are different ways to integrate the two, depending on whether the systems are proprietary that support specific hardware, or non-proprietary that support more general hardware, the note said. The different integration methods and their pros and cons are summarized as follows:
 

Simple non-proprietary access and video integration

 
According to the note, the simplest way to integrate IP door and video systems is to use the timestamp provided by the access control software. If a person enters at a specific time, the event leaves a timestamp in the access control system. The operator can then retrieve the video taken at that particular time.
 
“The pros are that this is a non-proprietary solution. Any door access control system and any surveillance system can be used. It’s a very flexible solution. The cons are that it takes more time to use. It also requires two applications running at the same time,” Kintronics said.
 

Integrated proprietary systems

 
Integrated solutions allow the user to control and manage both systems from one screen. “For example, the Pro-Series door access control system includes video integration. When you use the TVIPTirSoft software, the video from an IP camera or an embedded camera inside the door reader can be displayed on the same computer screen as the access control information. Since the door access system includes a picture of the person assigned to the credential, it is easy to see if the right person entered the door,” the note said.
 
However, there are disadvantages the above-mentioned example. “The TVIPTirSoft software only supports the proprietary door readers. This is only used to enhance the door access control system. It supports a limited number of manufacturers. It is not a general IP camera recording system,” the note said.
 

Integrated non-proprietary system solution

 
For these types of systems Kintronics uses a third-party software solution from Convergence to Pixels (C2P), which works with a variety of VMS and access control system manufacturers, as an example.
 
“The C2P software captures the data from the door access control system and enters it into a very powerful database. The information from the database can then be displayed next to the video provided by the video management software system.  This convergence of technology allows the user to search a database while displaying the related video,” the note said, adding one of the advantages is that this integrated solution can create complex alerts.
 
“For example, if a person, who has been removed from the access control system, tries to enter a door, a notification is automatically sent to security. We can also create alerts when the door is held open, or when a door is forced. In this case, the video from the camera at the door is automatically popped up on the OnSSI Ocularis screen, and an alert sound notifies the security person that action is required,” it said.
 
Yet the solution has disadvantages as well. “This solution is more complicated to install and use. It costs more because there is an additional software license for the C2P integration software,” Kintronics said.


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