Mobile Access Trends
Risk is a core concept in the practice of physical security. However, the risk is not always assessed effectively. Ideally, an organisation's appetite for risk guides its security strategy and action planning to the minutest detail, including buying decisions for security equipment and systems. We asked this week's Expert Panel Roundtable: How does the concept of risk influence buying decisions in the security market?
A sad irony in the physical security industry has been the lax attention paid historically to the cybersecurity elements of our industry’s systems. However, the picture has improved starkly in recent years as manufacturers have stepped up to meet the cybersecurity challenges and awareness of the issue has become much higher. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What's new in cybersecurity for physical security systems?
The morning-after reviews of ISC West 2023 could not have been more positive. Everyone in the industry seemed to revel in the excitement and momentum as the show decisively proclaimed: ‘We’re back.’ Continuing that momentum into the future will depend on how well the show adapts to changing industry trends and repeatedly reinvents itself to be better every year. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How could ISC West be improved to make it more valuable to visitors and exhibitors?
PKOC stands for Public Key Open Credential. It is a new standard that will meet a 30-year industry challenge and strip away much of the complexity and cost involved in protecting and administering credentials for access control. It could also accelerate the transition from cards to mobile access control. PKOC is a standards-based mobile credential that is essentially free, vendor-agnostic, and interoperable across multiple devices and systems. It is a highly secure access credential that can live on a mobile phone, in a plastic access card, or in any device capable of generating a public-private key pair. Access control systems PKOC is the newest standard of the Physical Security Interoperability Alliance (PSIA), a tax-exempt organisation created to define, recommend, and promote standards for IP-enabled security devices and systems. PSIA introduced the Physical Logical Access Interoperability (PLAI) specification in 2013 to normalise identity data across disparate physical access control systems. The PKOC specification was introduced in 2021. We’re convinced this is the future A challenge for PSIA in promoting the PKOC mobile credential is to explain it quickly and in layman’s terms “We see the benefit of implementing the PKOC technology and doing it well,” says Sam Siegel, Senior Field Applications Engineer for ELATEC, a manufacturer of credential-agnostic readers/writers. “We wanted to get involved and join the discussion.” ELATEC has been participating in PSIA for more than a year. “This is a better way to do things,” says Siegel. “The PSIA, myself included, are convinced this is the future. The challenge is to get enough people to understand that it is a seismic shift away from what has been in place for so long.” A challenge for PSIA in promoting the PKOC mobile credential is to explain it quickly and in layman’s terms. The explanation spans the concept of public key infrastructure (PKI) and the difference between symmetrical and asymmetrical digital keys. Protecting symmetrical keys A symmetrical key system, which has been used historically in the access control market, involves the use of a single proprietary digital key to both encrypt and decrypt information. This means that digital public keys must be incorporated into each access control reader in the form of a module or a license, which the reader uses to read any compatible cards. Protecting symmetrical keys has been an expensive technology challenge the access control world The need to share these digital keys (in effect, the ability to read every compatible card) securely among access control manufacturers, integrators and end users involves extra administration and costs to ensure the security of the system. Protecting symmetrical keys has been an expensive technology challenge the access control world has borne for decades. The use of proprietary keys also promotes dependence on a single manufacturer or vendor to expand the ecosystem. The use of asymmetrical keys takes away these challenges. Advantages of using asymmetrical key pairs PKOC embraces the principle of PKI (public key infrastructure), a two-key asymmetrical system used to ensure confidentiality and encryption. In effect, there are two digital "keys," one public and one private, that are used to encrypt and decrypt information, in this case, a credential for an access control system. The secure credential standard is generated independently of a third-party credential issuer. It is generated within the device. In the access control scenario, the smartphone generates a key pair in the secure element of the phone, including a private key, which is stored on the smartphone, and a public key, which serves as the user’s ID number in the access control system. Sharing the public key is not a security risk because it is worthless without the private key that is locked away on the smartphone. PKOC-enabled smartphone The smartphone must contain the private key in order to interface with the access control system When a PKOC-enabled smartphone approaches a PKOC-enabled reader, the reader sends a one-time random number (a ‘nonce’) to the smartphone, which then encrypts it using the private key, and sends it along with the public key back to the reader. The reader uses the public key to decrypt the random number, which confirms the authorised access associated with the smartphone. The signals are sent via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). Importantly, the private key never leaves the smartphone and is never shared with any other elements of the access control system. Therefore, there are no administrative or technical costs associated with protecting it. The smartphone must contain the private key in order to interface with the access control system using the public key. Mobile credentialing system For ELATEC, embracing PKOC provides a new way to highlight the company’s value proposition and promote it to a new group of companies; i.e., those who adopt the PKOC approach to mobile credentialing. The ‘universal’ configuration of the ELATEC reader hardware is credential-agnostic “PKOC serves as a great way to show off our value and what we do best,” says Siegel. ELATEC provides credential readers/writers that operate in a variety of card and reader environments, incorporating an integrated BLE module to support mobile ID and authentication solutions, including PKOC. Using applicable firmware, the ‘universal’ configuration of the ELATEC reader hardware is credential-agnostic and so compatible with any RFID card or mobile credentialing system, all in a small form factor (around 1 1/2 inches square). How readers and smartphones interact The PKOC standard addresses the variables of how the reader and the smartphone share information. Currently, the PKOC standard addresses communication via BLE, but the principle is the same for systems using near-field communication (NFC), ultra-wideband (UWB), or any future protocols. PKOC also defines how device manufacturers can enable devices (readers, locks, control panels, biometric devices, etc.) to securely consume the credential for authentication and access. PKOC can be used with smart cards as well as with smartphones. In the case of a smart card, the public and private keys are contained on the smart card, which communicates via NFC with the reader. The encryption/decryption scenario is exactly the same. PKOC enables users to ‘bring your own credential’ (BYOC). Public key number ELATEC is proud to have played an instrumental role with the PSIA in the implementation of PKOC" BLE offers a broader read range than NFC; the read range can be managed using software and/or by signalling intent or two-factor authentication. Because private keys remain secure inside a smartphone, they do not have to be incorporated into a digital wallet for security purposes, although they could be incorporated for matters of convenience. To simplify administration, the public key number can be used as a badge number. If badge numbers have already been assigned, a column could be added to the database to associate badge numbers with public key numbers. “ELATEC is proud to have played an instrumental role with the PSIA in the implementation of PKOC,” said Paul Massey, CEO of ELATEC, Inc. “End-users should not be limited in their solution mix to one or two vendors due to their proprietary technology. PKOC now provides the ideal combination of security, convenience, interoperability, and cost for industry participants, by industry participants.” ‘Experience PSIA’ will promote PKOC at ISC West ISC West participants include PSIM manufacturer Advancis Software and Services The flexibility of PKOC will be on display at ISC West 2023, where ‘Experience PSIA’ will register attendees and provide them with a PKOC credential that can be used with a variety of readers throughout the show. Also showcasing the PLAI standard, PSIA’s presence at ISC West will include ELATEC along with several other vendors/manufacturers. A special PSIA event will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on March 29 at the Venetian Ball Room B&C in Las Vegas. ISC West participants include PSIM manufacturer Advancis Software and Services, which acquired Cruatech software in 2012; and Idemia, specialising in identity-related security services including facial recognition and other biometrics. Integrated security systems Also involved are Johnson Controls (JCI), an integrated security systems provider that offers a range of security products and services; and Siemens, which offers its own range of security solutions and systems. Other participants include Last Lock, which has a unique spin on internet-enabled locks; while SAFR from Real Networks offers accurate, fast, unbiased face recognition and additional computer vision features, and Sentry Enterprises provides the SentryCard biometric platform for a privacy-centric, proof-of-identity solution. Finally, rfIDEAS manufactures credential readers.
Latest Access control news
Centific Global Solutions announced the launch of Pitaya.AI, a SaaS (Software as a Service) platform for retailers that provides a suite of intelligent storage solutions. These solutions leverage AI to tackle industry-wide business challenges such as shrinkage, workplace safety, stockout, and lack of customer behavior visibility. Need for digital strategies According to Gartner, 'Strategies for a digitally enabled and profitable physical store are foundational to the future of retail.' However, an increase in shrink (almost $100 billion according to the National Retail Federation) and continued labour shortage issues (record 75.8% turnover rate according to Korn Ferry) are posing significant burdens on retailers to cope with an eroding bottom line while providing an optimal customer experience. ' Pitaya.AI Pitaya.AI leverage the robust capabilities, and partnerships and markedly reduces losses due to shrinkage" “The time is now. As AI becomes more ubiquitous, enterprises have a unique opportunity to unlock profound value for their revenue, profitability, customer, and employee experiences,” said Venkat Rangapuram, CEO of Centific. He adds, “We created Pitaya.AI to leverage the robust capabilities and partnerships with NVIDIA Edge AI, Microsoft Azure Cloud, and OpenAI, transforming the shopping experience, enhancing associate productivity, and markedly reducing losses due to shrinkage.” Rich ecosystem Pitaya.AI addresses the ever-growing increase in theft for the retail industry by preventing theft at cashier-assisted and self-checkout lanes and helps prevent retail organised crime by detecting loitering and rapid pickup of multiple items. Pitaya.AI uses a broad range of technologies from the NVIDIA Metropolis stack, such as NVIDIA GPUs, the Jetson Edge AI platform, the TAO toolkit, and the TensorRT software development kit to develop the vision AI application. Pitaya.AI offers end-to-end value realisation for retailers via a rich ecosystem of partners, which includes Lexmark, SmartCow, and Wren Solutions. Vision AI solutions We are pleased to be partnering with Pitaya.AI on this exciting venture" "We are pleased to be partnering with Pitaya.AI on this exciting venture," said Ryan Hatfield, Lexmark Portfolio Director of Retail Solutions, adding "By leveraging the strengths of both companies, we are confident in our ability to deliver Vision AI solutions on the edge that provides enterprise-class security and data privacy without compromising performance and enabling rapid deployment at scale." Capabilities Pitaya.AI is engineered to: Require minimal capital expenditure because it leverages a preexisting setup and cameras. Integrate into the retail ecosystem including handheld devices, point-of-sale, virtual machines, and the cloud. Take immediate action via real-time notifications and task management. Deliver tangible business outcomes as all tasks and activities have a bottom-line impact. Principles “With human centricity at the forefront of our value system, we are committed to strict adherence to responsible AI guidelines,” said Vasu Sundarababu, Head of Engineering at Centific, adding “As such, the Pitaya.AI platform embodies the key principles of responsible AI: accountability, inclusiveness, reliability, safety, fairness, transparency, privacy, and security.”
Security sales and marketing specialist Wall2Wall Group, has signed up in partnership to promote Suprema’s Systems UK’s range of innovative access control, time & attendance, and biometric solutions. Wall2Wall Group was established to support security specialists with bespoke requirements for brand strategy support across different sales and marketing channel opportunities; including video, website, content creation, and social media. Effective security and biometric communication With Wall2Wall, we can leverage their industry knowledge, and resources to amplify our message" The new collaboration aims to leverage Wall2Wall’s expertise and strengthen Suprema's market presence in the UK expanding its reach within the security industry, while effectively communicating the benefits of its security and biometric technology to an even wider audience. Says Scott Douglas, Commercial Director at Suprema Systems UK, “We recognise the importance of effective communication in today’s competitive security landscape. By collaborating with Wall2Wall, we can leverage their industry knowledge, expertise, and resources to amplify our message, reach a broader audience, and differentiate ourselves in the market." Delivering cutting-edge security technology solutions “This partnership allows us to focus on what we do best, delivering cutting-edge security technology solutions while enhancing our marketing efforts with a team dedicated to showcasing our unique value proposition and driving growth. Together, we are poised to make a lasting impact with new and existing customers, and we can’t wait to get started!” Wall2Wall Group will capitalise on Suprema’s growing globally renowned industry expertise, boosting its online presence to highlight how its latest security and biometric technologies have achieved bespoke industry requirements. Enhance visibility, maximise reach Our role is to support and evolve sales and marketing through the vast array of marketing tools available" Mark Wall, Managing Director Wall2Wall Group added, “We are thrilled to have Suprema on board, not only as a global leader in biometric technology but also as a brand that is held in utmost respect within our industry." “Our role is to support and evolve sales and marketing efforts. To create awareness, generate leads, and foster customer engagement in the security market, through the vast array of marketing tools available, both online, in print, and in networking. The intention is to work in true partnership to fuel dynamic business growth, enhance visibility and maximise market reach.” Partnership benefits “Having established the Suprema brand in the UK over the last 6 years, and recently completing a strong lineup in our sales structure, we now see this as a valuable opportunity to build further into the security market." “Mark and the Wall2Wall team showcase the same energy, enthusiasm, and thirst for technology that is vital to Suprema’s message. We are excited to see what the partnership can deliver,” said Jamie McMillen, Managing Director at Suprema Systems UK.
DigiCert, a global provider of digital trust announced a partnership with ReversingLabs, a pioneer in software supply chain security, to enhance software security by combining advanced binary analysis and threat detection from ReversingLabs with DigiCert’s enterprise-grade secure code signing solution. DigiCert customers will benefit from improved software integrity through deep analysis that shows their software is free from known threats like malware, software implants, software tampering, and exposed secrets before they securely sign it. Threat detection and secrets protection This newly combined solution protects against software-based vulnerabilities and attacks" "DigiCert’s partnership with ReversingLabs advances supply chain security through threat detection and secrets protection delivered by automated workflows that seamlessly operate within DevOps environments and CI/CD pipelines,” said Deepika Chauhan, Chief Product Officer at DigiCert. “This newly combined solution protects against software-based vulnerabilities and attacks, helping organisations ensure digital trust and build confidence with their customers.” Addressing software supply chain issues "ReversingLabs is excited to partner with DigiCert to help solve software supply chain security issues at all stages of the software development and deployment process,” said Mario Vuksan, CEO and Co-founder at ReversingLabs. “Every DigiCert customer needs to think about the integrity of the software they build, buy or run. Our work together will strengthen the ecosystem and provide organisations with the necessary tools to ensure the trustworthiness of their software." Digital trust strategies Digital trust strategies that centralise, standardise, and unify software security practices improve user trust" “Organisations must take proactive efforts to secure their software supply chain to withstand the continuing and evolving threats of cyberattacks,” said Katie Norton, Senior Research Analyst for IDC’s DevOps & DevSecOps research practices. “Digital trust strategies that centralise, standardise and unify software security practices play a key role in improving resiliency and user trust.” Software supply chain weakness Weaknesses in the software supply chain have been exploited in recent years, resulting in tampering, malware insertion, and other threats to critical business software. A recent ReversingLabs survey found that nearly 90 percent of technology professionals detected significant risks in their software supply chain in the last year. More than 70 percent said that current application security solutions are not providing the necessary protections. Software Trust Manager Software Trust Manager provides a single workflow that is centrally controlled across the organisation Powered by ReversingLabs, threat detection within DigiCert Software Trust Manager secures the software supply chain through advanced, comprehensive detection of threats such as malware, software tampering, the inclusion of secrets and certificate misconfigurations in open-source software, proprietary software, containers, and release packages. Software Trust Manager provides a single workflow that is centrally controlled across the organisation. Comprehensive SBOM The solution also generates a comprehensive software bill of materials (SBOM) covering internally developed and third-party software, such as open-source and commercially licenced software. As attacks on the software supply chain increase, threat detection, and SBOM generation are becoming increasingly important and the focus of government and industry regulations.
Lacework, the data-driven security platform, has announced new CIEM functionality to address the complex and growing challenges in managing identity threats and unnecessary risks within public cloud environments. With over 35,000 granular permissions across hyperscale cloud providers, organisations can struggle to maintain an overview and manage access and identities securely. Most cloud users and instances are granted far more permissions than they require, exposing unnecessary vulnerabilities to cloud breaches, account takeover, and data exfiltration. This issue is then intensified by machine identities in the cloud, which typically outnumber humans by an order of magnitude. New CIEM capabilities Lacework delivers real-time monitoring of all cloud identities across complex multi-cloud environments Lacework’s new CIEM capabilities extend the company’s broad identity security offerings with powerful new automation that calculates risks and prioritises action for security teams. Lacework delivers real-time monitoring of all cloud identities across complex multi-cloud environments. This has been combined with its sophisticated system and behavioural analysis to identify exposed secrets, IAM misconfiguration, and over-provisioning of permissions, and to prioritise any necessary action according to risk. Simplifying cloud identity security These new capabilities augment Lacework’s existing anomaly detection technology that actively monitors human and non-human activity to detect behaviour that may be a sign of an attack in progress. Unifying these capabilities at scale bridges the gap between IAM and SecOps teams to simplify cloud identity security. “Our customers need to know what entities are doing in their cloud and whether it’s malicious or inappropriate, and it can’t get in the way of their ability to move fast,” said Adam Leftik, Vice President, of Product, Lacework. Identifying risk via a single platform Customers can address both sides of the identity security issue with the context to investigate, prioritise, and respond Adam Leftik adds, “Now Lacework customers can address both sides of the identity security issue with a single platform that prevents identity risk exposure and detects identity threats at scale, with the context to quickly investigate, prioritise, and respond to identity alerts." He continues, "It’s the latest step in our mission to give enterprises the confidence to rapidly innovate in the cloud and drive their business forward.” New entitlement management technology Lacework dynamically discovers all cloud user, resource, group, and role identities and their net-effective permissions, and automatically correlates granted versus used permissions to determine identities with excessive privileges. The platform calculates a risk score for each identity, determines the riskiest identities based on attack path analysis, and auto-generates high-confidence recommendations for right-sizing permissions based on historical observations. Customer benefits Combined with Lacework’s ability to prioritise risks from an attack path context, as well as detect user and entity behaviour anomalies, customers can: Continuously comply with IAM security and regulatory compliance requirements. Identify all cloud user, application, and service identities, know exactly what actions each can take, and prioritise the identities that pose the greatest risk. Limit the blast radius of compromised cloud accounts, achieve the least privilege, and establish trust with engineering teams. Continuously discover risky behaviour, including lateral movement and privilege escalation, without writing rules or stitching together disparate alerts. Rapidly detect insider threats associated with malicious or accidental abuse of permissions. Easy risk detection “Enforcing least privilege and having visibility of identities and entitlements is a top cloud security challenge for IDC clients. With this innovation from Lacework, security teams can automatically see which identities are overly-permissive, and zero in on the ones that pose the greatest risk,” said Philip Bues, Research Manager for Cloud Security, at IDC. He adds, “Beyond prioritising risks, this will also allow teams to confidently suggest policy changes and reduce their overall attack surface risk.”
Access control applications
Matrix Products offered: Matrix range of IP-PBX: ETERNITY LE with 23 SLT48 cards. Matrix range of VOIP-FXO-FXS Gateways: SETU VFXTH0032. PRI dual cards and one VOIP card. Provision made for Call forward, Conference, CLI, LCR, Auto-attendant, and Call recording. Location: Mumbai IDFC Bank offers financial solutions Introduction: IDFC Bank is a universal bank, offering financial solutions through its nationwide branches, with its headquarters in Mumbai, India. They required a single-box communication system that can accommodate 1250 Analogue users while being integrated with other brands' PBX systems Over IP. IDFC bank wanted to have a compact IP PBX system with all the end users as Analogue extensions Challenges: IDFC bank wanted to have a compact IP PBX system with all the end users as Analogue extensions. ETERNITY LE could accommodate up to 1100 Analogue users as its other slots were occupied with PRI cards. Increasing the capacity of Matrix IP-PBX system and integrating it with other brands' IP-PBX systems over IP were major challenges faced by the customer. Regional channel partner Solutions: Matrix, working along with its regional channel partner - Space Office Systems (I) Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai, understood the requirement of the customer and delivered ETERNITY LE along with five units of SETU VFXTH0032. Results: Seamless internal communication boosted employees' efficiency Enabled bank staff to offer enhanced customer services Convenience delivered with plug-and-play operations Reduced investment with compactness Transparency of features between two different PBX systems Enhanced reach of IT department Hassle-free Maintenance Products Offered: ETERNITY LE with 23 SLT48 Cards SETU VFXTH0032 and VOIP32 Card Web-based Intuitive User Interface for Hassle-free Maintenance Connected Matrix IP-PBX with other IP-PBX Systems over IP
Controlling access into and around Helsinki Airport is a complex task. Around 15,000 people work there; daily pre-pandemic passenger numbers hovered around 60,000 to 70,000. Airport managers chose electronic and electromechanical locks, keyless padlocks and readers to secure the site and improve access management. Safety for staff of operator Finavia and the airport’s customers is paramount. For obvious reasons, only authorised people should have access to many areas. The safe management of movement — by passengers, staff and contractors — is critical to Finavia’s mission to deliver an efficient service in Helsinki. Inbuilt RFID capability To enhance user convenience, they sought new access solutions to help facilitate adoption of keyless security at the airport. Finavia also require solutions which provide compatibility: They secure all types of opening, from doors and cabinets to fences and cargo. Devices must integrate seamlessly with their Lenel access control system. “Safety, functionality, durability, security of supply and usability were the reasons we chose the ASSA ABLOY solution,” explains Kari Mäkinen, Senior Access Control Specialist at Helsinki Airport. Aperio H100 battery-powered handles Working with ASSA ABLOY gave Finavia the broadest possible choice of solutions to meet their complex security needs. With Aperio H100 battery-powered handles, many types of airport door are now connected to their access control system. These Aperio devices with inbuilt RFID capability were easy to install — without the cabling that traditional devices require. Necessary access rights Authorised building users come and go with programmable, secure ID cards “Now we see in real time who will open the lock and when, and we can modify and grant access rights — remotely,” says Kari Mäkinen. Authorised building users come and go with programmable, secure ID cards. It’s much more convenient than a mechanical key. “The access cards of both Finavia personnel and staff of other companies are easily programmed with necessary access rights,” said Kari Mäkinen, adding “When employees change, their access is disabled. Or if the card is lost, it can be completely removed from the system. With mechanical keys, that process is much harder.” Electromechanical door devices Multiple connectable ASSA ABLOY solutions are deployed alongside wireless Aperio and CLIQ Protec2 CLIQ electromechanical door devices. Keyless, mobile-operated ABLOY padlocks secure fencing and cargo. An antimicrobial coating on ABLOY door automation buttons helps to prevent germ spread and reassures staff. The availability of all these solutions from a single manufacturer — easily used with their existing access control solution — helped Finavia to create a unified, integrated system at Helsinki Airport so passengers pass through safely on the way to every corner of the world.
National Petrochemical Industrial Co. (NATPET) is a Saudi Arabian company producing Polypropylene (PP) resin since the year 2009. The plant is in Yanbu Industrial City on the west coast of Saudi Arabia having a name-plate production capacity of 400,000 MT/Year. NATPET PP plant is using the state-of-the-art LyondellBasell licensed Spheripol technology producing a market-defined range of distinguished quality PP resins. The plant is enjoying the sustainable advantage of producing its own high-quality main raw material, Propylene, through an integrated Propane Dehydrogenation (PDH) plant. Challenges The device that can work in harsh environmental conditions Complexity in access control policies for security Difficult fire alarm integration to open the door in emergency case No real-time notifications Manual work for employee attendance and leave policies Difficulty in managing multiple shifts Work hours’ calculation for different shifts Difficult HRMS integration with SAP for salary processing Difficult to manage visitors & access control. Solution The IP-based architecture provided by Matrix enhanced the reliability and scalability of the solution Matrix always strives to provide a customised solution for every single customer-specific requirement with its world-class products. After discussion with the customer, Matrix provided a web-based centralised environment to accommodate all their needs such as Time- Attendance/Access Control/Visitor Management on a single platform/portal. The IP-based architecture provided by Matrix enhanced the reliability and scalability of the solution. Advanced access control policies Matrix offered advanced access control policies suitable for all mission-critical organisation-specific scenarios. Fire alarm integration on the same platform without additional hardware manages multiple shifts and overnight shifts effectively. Moreover, direct integration with SAP without middleware/manual efforts has made the process easy and hassle-free. They managed visitors through the fast and error-free visitor check-in process and controlled visitors' access in sensitive areas with the help of Matrix solution. Products offered Fingerprint + RFID + PIN-based Door Controller with Wi-Fi & POE- COSEC VEGA FAX RFID + PIN based Door Controller with Wi-Fi & POE- COSEC VEGA CAX RFID with POE- COSEC PATH RDCI Application Server Platform with 2000 Users- COSEC CENTRA LE Time-Attendance Software Module- COSEC LE TAM Access Control Software Module- COSEC LE ACM
Coventry University will enhance security across its 33-acre city-centre campus with a surveillance upgrade that will unlock new capabilities and efficiency gains to support its dedicated security team. Coventry University is upgrading to the latest version of Synectics’ Synergy software to benefit from features including enhanced video management, dynamic mapping, and integration to analytics-enabled cameras as part of its ongoing mission to keep students, staff, and visitors safe. Remote 24/7 monitoring, made simple The upgrade will allow a small team based out of the University’s central control room to monitor more efficiently and effectively over 1,300 cameras spread across a vast array of campus buildings, car parks, student areas, and external sites, including halls of residence. While several locations feature localised surveillance recording and viewing facilities, including some third-party technology, Synectics’ Synergy will integrate all feeds to ensure the central team has continuous command and control of cameras and recorded footage. Failover server Synergy automatically identifies the best location to ‘backup’ video footage, allowing for seamless viewing A dedicated failover server is also being deployed as part of the upgrade as an additional layer of system resilience. Synergy automatically identifies the best location to ‘backup’ video footage, allowing for seamless viewing and playback should the primary server be compromised. Video analytics, alarms, and incident management Integration with video analytics-enabled cameras, and the University’s dedicated alarm system, means that the central team will be alerted by Synergy to any suspicious behaviour that warrants immediate attention. This includes the presence and movement of cars or people in or around university premises at unusual times or in areas with prohibited access, which is particularly beneficial for securing facilities that would be unmanned or patrolled infrequently. Rapid response When an event that needs ‘eyes on’ is detected, footage from the nearest available cameras is prioritised in the control room. The exact location is pinpointed within Synergy’s mapping functionality for rapid response. An ‘incident’ is automatically created on the system with footage pushed to and stored in a secure incident locker for evidential purposes. This ensures the University is equipped to pursue internal security investigations and support local law enforcement as required. Reporting that supports resource allocation Details of all operator activity, alarms received, and incidents generated are automatically logged for audit trails Details of all operator activity, alarms received, and incidents generated are automatically logged on the system for fully transparent audit trails. Together with built-in data analysis and reporting wizards, this means the surveillance team can create valuable reports on incident types, frequency, trends, activity hot spots, how scenarios are dealt with, and a wide range of other information, all of which can be used to demonstrate best-practice compliance for public space surveillance and inform decisions about future security requirements. Future-proofing surveillance For Coventry University, the upgrade is a natural evolution of a 15-year-plus collaboration with Synectics. Gary Dedden, Head of Protection Services at Coventry University says, “It’s reassuring to work with the Synectics team, who we already know and trust, and benefit from a surveillance software platform we already find easy and intuitive to use." “Alongside protecting everyone on site, effective use of resources is our key priority." Improving detection capabilities It also unlocks future potential by giving us the flexibility to integrate with any emerging security technologies" "We are always looking for ways to improve our ability to detect suspicious persons and activities across a very diverse campus without creating additional pressure for my team in the control room or for security personnel on the ground." “Upgrading to the latest version of Synergy allows us to do exactly that. It also unlocks future potential by giving us the flexibility to integrate with any emerging security technologies that we feel will further enhance our capabilities.” Updating security Synectics is committed to supporting Coventry University with its evolving security needs. Synectics Account Manager, Brett Longley, comments, “It’s great to be strengthening our collaboration with Coventry University." "Attracting staff, students, and visitors from across the UK and overseas means the challenge is always on to protect the thousands of people who set foot on their campus each year. We’re honoured to work with Gary and his team to tackle this challenge head-on.”