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INSIGHTS

City of Gangneung: Unifying video and analytics empowers city operators

City of Gangneung: Unifying video and analytics empowers city operators
The city of Gangneung enhances city surveillance by unifying video and BriefCam analytics systems within Security Center.
Bordering the east coast of South Korea, Gangneung is a municipal city in the province of Gangwondo. Just over 210,000 residents call Gangneung home. Many tourists also flock to the coastal city for various attractions, such as watching the sunrise over the East Sea and visiting the popular Jeongdongjin and Gyeongpo beaches. The city is also host to numerous festivals, including the Gangneung Danoje festival which has received a UNESCO heritage designation and attracts an influx of visitors every year. To keep residents and guests safe, the city relies on video surveillance and other advanced security systems.
 

Working in siloes slows incident response

 
Many cities all over the world use surveillance technology to enhance public safety. The city of Gangneung is no different. City staff relied on a networked video system to effectively monitor and investigate reported incidents. The challenge was that city surveillance teams were distributed across many locations and managed independently. These siloes slowed communication and incident response.
 
The city-wide system had also grown to reach over 1,000 cameras. Monitoring all the video, responding to incidents, and handling investigations became increasingly burdensome for operators who needed to find information and act quickly.
 
As time went on, the city of Gangneung saw an opportunity to expand their security operations and add other advanced security systems. The goal was to fully maximize surveillance investments and enhance operator efficiency. To do that, the city wanted to build a centralized and unified CCTV control center, which could bring their teams together and empower them with the latest cutting-edge video solutions.
 
To build out the control center’s comprehensive video solution, the city of Gangneung partnered with Ncloud, a leading systems integrator that specializes in government, transportation, and energy and utilities applications.
 
After considering many options, city staff decided to equip the new Gangneung CCTV control center with leading security technologies including the Security Center Omnicast video management system (VMS) and the BriefCam Video Content Analytics Platform. Together, these technologies could bring relevant events to the operators’ attention and help speed up video investigations and incident response.
 
“We were able to introduce a control center security platform that combines a reliable VMS and intelligent video analytics solution which are developed by two industry leaders, Genetec and BriefCam. This has empowered the city of Gangneung to effectively enhance safety and security for residents and businesses. The city can also continue to expand security and surveillance operations as needs evolve,” said Ncloud CEO Won-hun Kim.
 

Expanding city-wide surveillance with Security Center

 
Today, operators monitor over 1,200 IP cameras from the new 523 square meter-control center in the Gangneung City Hall. The control center houses a control room, conference room, video analysis room, and information and communication room. Three managers, sixteen operators, and one police officer oversee all security tasks.
 
According to Gu-min Kim, System Maintenance Manager at the Gangneung CCTV Control Center, who oversaw the construction and implementation of the new control center and now manages the protection of personal video information, “The biggest consideration in the project design was ensuring that the security solution could empower operators to work efficiently and effectively as camera counts continue to grow.”
 
The city staff knew that their surveillance solution needed to be designed to seamlessly evolve alongside their needs. “This customer noted that many CCTV integrated control centers failed to cope with the increasing number of cameras, ultimately causing the network and system to become unstable. The only solution for them was to keep expanding the network and adding servers, which increases costs and demand on resources,” explained Hyun-chan Shin, Director Sales at Ncloud.
 
When it came time to choose a video management system (VMS) for the Gangneung CCTV control center, the Genetec VMS was the obvious choice. “The Security Center Omnicast system was the only solution to fully support H.265 video file formats and end-to-end multicasting functionality. These features enable the Gangneung control center to apply the latest technology, while significantly reducing network bandwidth and increasing data storage efficiency. With the Omnicast system, the city can easily accommodate future expansion and add high-resolution cameras later on,” said Shin.
 

Transforming video into actionable intelligence

 
The comprehensive BriefCam Video Content Analytics Platform has been fully unified within the Security Center Omnicast video surveillance system. This further empowers operators to make productive, proactive, and predictive decisions.
 
Based on deep learning and artificial intelligence technologies, BriefCam enables object detection, extraction, classification, and analysis, making video searchable, actionable, and quantifiable for the control center. For instance, operators can configure alerts based on object classification, search videos using extensive object class and attribute filters, as well as face and license plate recognition.
 
They can also enhance incident investigations with BriefCam’s patented Video Synopsis technology, an innovative solution that simultaneously displays objects that appeared at different times within a shortened video segment.
 
“Having the BriefCam analytics unified within the Security Center platform has been a very user-friendly experience. The comprehensive video solution is very intuitive, and the menus are well written in Korean, so it’s easy to navigate and operate the systems,” said Gu-min Kim from Gangneung.
 

Empowering operators to solve cases faster

 
Mostly, operators use the surveillance platform to deter crimes, monitor and preserve forests and cultural assets, and spot other nuisances such as parking violations and illegal dumping. They also use the Security Center Omnicast system and BriefCam’s video analytics to handle any emergencies and ensure community safety. Having both the Security Center Omnicast system and the BriefCam video analytics combined in one intuitive platform keeps operators at the mission-critical control center working at peak efficiency.
 
Since implementing the centralized video solutions, operators have been able to track suspects involved in accidents or other random events and solve cases faster. In one particular case, the control center operators were also able to use the Security Center Omnicast system and BriefCam to assist police in tracking the suspects of a phone scam.
 
“Our team received a letter of appreciation from Gangneung Police station because we were able to help them identify and find a group of individuals who were suspected to be running a voice phishing organization,” said Gu-min Kim.
 
The control center team has also been leveraged for solving sexual crime cases, locating missing persons, and preventing accidents through abnormal behavioral detection, such as accidental tripping or falling near the city’s breakwater. “Within the unified security platform, we’re able to receive real-time analytics alerts. As soon as the BriefCam analytics detects unusual activity in pre-defined publicly-restricted zones, the Security Center platform will alert our team so they can respond quickly,” said Gu-min Kim.
 

Planning for city-wide security expansions

 
Looking ahead, the city of Gangneung plans to expand its use of BriefCam’s real-time applications and business intelligence for uncovering inefficiencies, optimizing traffic flows, and urban development. The city is also keeping up-to-date on any new technological developments and capabilities that could improve the control center team’s efficiency. Today, the city’s goals are to keep making improvements to the city-wide surveillance system to maximize productivity and community impact.
 
“Working closely with Ncloud, Genetec, and BriefCam, we have been able to significantly enhance our city-wide security operations and empower our control center operators. Today, our team can work more quickly and effectively at identifying urgent situations in real-time and accelerating post-event investigations. We will continue to enhance the surveillance system to keep our city safe,” concluded Gu-min Kim.


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