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INSIGHTS

Video surveillance alone is not enough for K12 security

Video surveillance alone is not enough for K12 security
Most schools use surveillance cameras but to make them more effective, intelligence video analytics is needed.
For several years K12 schools have made use of video surveillance systems to monitor activities on their premises. But technological advancements and increasing crime rate and sophistication necessitate the use of video analytics.
 
Leveraging the power of Deep Learning, video analytics can help school authorities extract, classify, index, and recognize objects and behaviors in surveillance footage. There are several ways in which these functions will help school authorities.

1. Search and review

This is perhaps one of the most popular features of video analytics. Given the increasing number of cameras, manually searching through tons of footage generated every day for a specific incident can be a nightmare. Video analytics can help operators search through footage using common attributes.
 
In a recent blog post, Grant Jensen of Briefcam explains that analytics software makes it possible to search and review footage quickly and accurately, using multiple filters based on object class and attributes such as clothing or vehicle type and color, the direction of movement, gender, or an adult vs. child. 

2. Face recognition

A face recognition system can watch out for known offenders in the area from a digital watchlist and alert authorities if anyone in the list is detected. In situations where a person’s face may not be clear, the system can also use an “appearance similarity” feature that complements face recognition.

3. License plate recognition

License plate recognition can ensure that only vehicles with permission to enter the school premises do so. The system will monitor vehicles that enter the campus, checking the license plates against a list that’s already provided. Operators can receive alerts if any unidentified vehicles arrive. Intelligent video analytic systems can work well even when the camera only partially captures a license plate.

4. Operational intelligence reports

While some of the advantages of video analytics are immediate (as in the case of facial recognition), there are several long-term benefits.
 
“Software can collect and aggregate long-term video data, which would help school administrators derive operational intelligence reports, such as heatmaps that illustrate footfall in buildings and across campus or dashboards that show vehicle or pedestrian traffic volume,” Jensen explains in the post. “This long-term data identifies patterns to help school administrators improve school scheduling, traffic patterns, or campus layout.”

5. Better situational awareness

When used for a considerable period, video analytics helps operators identify what constitutes normal behavior on the campus. This would help them configure alerts when the system detects any “abnormality.” This, in turn, provides better situational awareness and can significantly improve response time in case of any untoward incidents.

“For example, if a crowd of students gathers in a hallway, exceeding the custom threshold, that may indicate a disturbance, in which case the system would automatically send a people-count alert for an operator to assess,” Jensen says. “Similarly, video intelligence software line crossing alerts can track of the number of people in high school auditorium or gymnasium to ensure compliance with building occupancy codes.”

The need for video analytics

Two things are needed to make schools safer. One, an automated system that alerts as soon as an issue is detected, and two, an efficient system for reviewing footage for forensic purposes. Video analytics helps to meet both.
 
One of the advantages of Deep Learning-based video analytics is that even schools that use older cameras can use them without upgrades. This should alleviate any cost-related concerns as well!
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