The Key to 360 Degree Physical Security!
Today, all leading organizations are aware of the modern day security threats. From internal data hacks and cyber-crimes to vandalism and break-ins, the danger is very real and is always lurking round the corner. That’s why companies have either installed or are looking to install sophisticated physical security systems to safeguard their workplace. However, even with the huge capital investments and complex security processes in place they are not 100% confident when it comes to handling a crisis situation.
So, what is it that’s going amiss?
Many a times an alarm or an alert that comes directly into the security environment is not dealt with properly, resulting in a disastrous situation. This happens because the person manning the central security system is not sure of how to act in case of an emergency, due to lack of meaningful ground info. He either overreacts and causes an unnecessary disruption or sits back and takes no action thinking everything is fine. Both are equally dangerous and incur a cost. The time taken for collaborating data from disparate security systems can be the difference between a well-managed lockdown and a hara-kiri of sorts.
What if the system is smart enough to act on its own? What does it take for your security system to become fully automated and contextually intelligent?
Well, the answer simply is a Connected Physical Security System that comprises of integrated access control and video surveillance solutions.
Isolated systems may answer the question “What’s happening?” but they aren’t much help with the follow-up questions, “How important is it?” and “What should I do about it?” That’s because they don’t correlate the activities they record with those registered by other systems. Therefore, the security personnel watching the cameras may not have enough information to recognize that the person who seemed to swipe his card and walk through the door was not in fact granted access. Similarly, the access-control system recorded the door opening, but it didn’t associate it with the face of the person walking in. The individual systems still think everything is fine when its not!
The need of the hour is a cohesive video and access control system that is efficient, non-proprietary, and cost effective. The synergy between the two technologies is seamless and could be leveraged in many different ways to deliver strategic advantages. With recent advancements in software technologies, and the ongoing discussions between manufacturers, integration has become a popular substitute for traditional interfacing. However, even integration has its limits. The best alternative is a single software that manages access control, intrusion and video through non-proprietary security appliances. It delivers many unique business benefits that include:-
Efficiency and Resource Productivity
Any security staff, regardless of the industry or sector they belong to, should spend their time on performing their core tasks such as monitoring, investigating and reacting to low and high-priority situations, and not on managing technology. In other words, the security technologies they use should help them be more efficient and not slow them down. However, switching between disparate systems can be cumbersome and time consuming.
Access control systems in particular generate alarms such as invalid badges, door-forced and door-held events. Those events need to be investigated, but the task of doing so with a standalone surveillance system is painful. Receive an alarm on one system, and having to move to another completely different system to investigate can be a time kill. This surveillance system has a different user interface and so he/she has to “switch gears.” Then, which camera do you call up to view the scene? An experienced operator will know, but that “experience” costs you a lot in terms of training.
Interoperability leading to Newer Possibilities
The PC industry has by far been most successful in building interoperable products. Adding new hardware such as a printer, web cam, gaming devices etc. or installing new software is ‘piece of cake’ even for the amateurs. This has rendered unlimited capabilities to the users.
However, the same cannot be said about the security industry. A user cannot simply decide to buy the latest high-tech wireless door controller and add it to the existing access control system. Or buy the latest and greatest IP cameras and connect them to the video surveillance system without first verifying the support infrastructure. Making an investment in proprietary technology can be tough as it limits the option of adopting new technologies and capabilities. Interoperability on the other hand allows organizations to adopt best-of-breed products and ensure greater flexibility in the system.
Event Correlation Leading to Minimized False Alarms
A single server infrastructure where the access control system and video management system share the same events database is able to correlate events and minimize false alarms. For example if there is a tailgating event detected by the video sub-system, the access control system can automatically confirm if there was single or multiple cards swiped at the door in question, in which case the alarm would or would not be automated.
Ease of Maintenance and Support
System upgrades are fast and can be remotely managed from the backend. The ease of upgrade results in significant time savings for the integrators and simplifies the technical support aspect in cases of issues since there is a no time wasted in coordinating with multiple vendors. For the end user, it translates into quicker response time to resolve problems and get answers.
Cloudastructure provides an integrated Cloud Video Surveillance and Access Control System built on the principle of Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) – the foundation of next generation security management. The system collects and correlates events from video surveillance, access control to provide you data that once contextualized and analyzed, becomes information for making better business decisions. By unifying 2 of the key security systems – Video Surveillance and Access Control it produces much enhanced situational awareness that prompts smarter decisions beyond physical security.