Daily Archives: 14/10/2014

Charter Security dog patrols help reduce crime and anti-social behaviour in London’s Tower Hamlets

Residents in Tower Hamlets have praised a project that has helped to reduce crime in their neighbourhood. The ‘Dealer a Day’ programme sees Charter Security working with Tower Hamlets enforcement officers and Partnership Task Force (PTF) police officers to combat drug dealing and anti-social behaviour in an initiative led by the local authority.

In response to residents’ concerns, sniffer dogs and general patrol dogs are being used to detect a variety of items, including potential weapons and drugs. The pilot initiative began at the end of 2013, and was so successful it has been extended into an ongoing project.

That project has already achieved extremely positive results, disrupting numerous drug deals and detecting and seizing several quantities of cannabis. Indeed, recent raids have led to the seizure of heroin, cocaine and cannabis with a street value of over £6,000.

Regular patrols combat the problem at source, helping to disrupt and prevent drug deals taking place. The dog patrols target high risk areas during what would be considered ‘peak’ drug trading/anti-social behaviour hours.

Six tower blocks formed the pilot area, which has now been extended to cover 15. Stairwells of Tower Hamlets Homes managed properties are regularly visited and patrolled, and dogs are also used in open areas such as greens.

The ‘Dealer a Day’ programme sees Charter Security working with Tower Hamlets Enforcement Officers and Partnership Task Force (PTF) police officers to combat drug dealing and anti-social behaviour in an initiative led by the local authority

The ‘Dealer a Day’ programme sees Charter Security working with Tower Hamlets Enforcement Officers and Partnership Task Force (PTF) police officers to combat drug dealing and anti-social behaviour in an initiative led by the local authority

Bringing drug dealers to justice

Trevor Kennett, head of enforcement services at Tower Hamlets, explained: “I know that residents want the council, police and our partners to work together to stamp out drug dealing and bring drug dealers to justice. These latest patrols with Charter Security’s dog handling services are part of our continuing efforts to do just that.”

Part of Grosvenor Services, Charter Security has an impressive client list covering the commercial, construction and corporate sectors. Customers include Balfour Beatty, The Corporation of London and Network Rail. Services offered by the company include security guarding, key holding, alarm response, concierge and Front of House, Control Room management and CCTV monitoring, Mail Room services, dog handling and event and personal security.

Robert Hanratty, operations director for Charter Security, said: “We’re proud to have played such a key role in this project. It shows how successful partnership working between public and private sector organisations can produce excellent results – in this case a marked reduction in crime and anti-social behaviour.”

Established in Ireland back in 1959, Grosvenor Services is a family-owned and run facilities services company with operations throughout Ireland, the UK and the USA. The organisation provides corporate businesses in a range of sectors with the highest possible levels of service.

*For more information on Grosvenor Services visit: http://www.grosvenorservices.com, call +44 (0) 207 072 0934 or send an e-mail: enquiries@grosvenorservices.com

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Zaun acquires CCTV developer EyeLynx in bid to offer complete perimeter security solutions for end users

Perimeter fencing manufacturer Zaun has acquired EyeLynx Limited, the specialist developer and manufacturer of video and electronic security solutions. The acquisition enables Zaun to offer complete perimeter security solutions to its ever-growing end user customer base.

Jay Patel and Francisco Feijoo, the founders of EyeLynx, have continually delivered comprehensive solutions using their SharpView software. Indeed, the company has actively collaborated with Zaun for more than two years now, rendering this purchase the natural next step forward for both organisations.

Commenting on the deal, Zaun’s co-founder and director Alastair Henman explained: “Jay and Francisco are great guys with an exciting product. The synergy of that product with our customers is plain to see, so we look forward to helping the tie-up thrive in the years ahead. We’re giving Jay and Francisco all the support they need to develop state-of-the-art perimeter protection solutions that integrate with Zaun’s fencing products. As well as growing EyeLynx, this development also moves Zaun towards an integrated perimeter security systems offering.”

The deal is signed at EyeLynx's Chessington office by (from left to right) Alastair Henman, Jay Patel and Francisco Feijoo

The deal is signed at EyeLynx’s Chessington office by (from left to right) Alastair Henman, Jay Patel and Francisco Feijoo

Working out of offices in Chessington, Surrey and Zaragoza, Spain, EyeLynx has created SharpView, the highest performance system for HD MegaPixel CCTV. Built-in capabilities for Video Content Analysis mean that SharpView is also “the smartest recording and management system” in the security sector.

EyeLynx’s Pharos system is the only true Rapid Deployment High Definition (HD) surveillance system on the market with Edge Recording Cluster capability to incorporate an intelligent recorder, management software and wireless communications all in the same unit. Using the SharpView recording engine, Pharos can accommodate multiple slave PTZ cameras of any make connected into the master.

Cameras record in HD on a 24/7 basis and, whenever a perimeter zone is compromised or a potential intruder approaches too close to the fence, Pharos will send a snapshot alert to the Control Room operators for visual verification or to assigned personal mobile devices (such as those belonging to the local police chief or the nearest constable to the reported breach).

Screen shot from the EyeLynx Zaun RDS SharpView Manager

Screen shot from the EyeLynx Zaun RDS SharpView Manager

Zaun and EyeLynx have already developed a rapid deployment CCTV tower with embedded cabling and an integrated power cabinet in the post base to enable quick and easy on-site set-up without the need for heavy machinery. Remote connectivity is achieved over wireless 3G or 4G.

Only the master unit needs a SIM card, which helps beam the video intelligence to a workstation or mobile device into which anyone authorised can dial-in to view live footage or rewind and replay from any of the cameras.

The system was successfully deployed at the Conservative Party’s Annual Conference, which took place at the ICC in Birmingham last week.

EyeLynx in operation at the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham

EyeLynx in operation at the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham

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BSIA calls for increased engagement in CCTV standards development

Rapid developments in the areas of CCTV standards and regulation have prompted the British Security Industry Association to call for increased engagement by industry practitioners in BSIA Working Groups and Standards Committees.

In a letter addressed to business leaders in the CCTV sector, the BSIA’s technical director Alex Carmichael outlines a number of forthcoming changes set to affect the CCTV landscape. These include the introduction of three British Standards, eight international standards and three BSIA Codes of Practice (which themselves often go on to form the basis of new standards).

In addition, the impact of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, the appointment of the Surveillance Camera Commissioner Tony Porter and the subsequent publication of the Government’s CCTV Code of Practice in 2013 continue to be felt by the industry, with the standards and guidance issued by the Surveillance Camera Commissioner’s office expected to be adopted as part of an increasing number of specifications and tenders in the coming year.

Nominating a CCTV expert

“One of the easiest ways for companies to influence this developing surveillance landscape is to nominate an expert to a BSIA Working Group or BSIA Committee,” explained Carmichael, who chairs the Surveillance Camera Commissioner’s Standards Working Group. “Ultimately, many of these representatives speak for our industry on British and International Standards Committees, in turn ensuring that Association members’ interests are fully incorporated within the resulting standards.”

The BSIA is calling for increased engagement in CCTV standards development

The BSIA is calling for increased engagement in CCTV standards development

Earlier this year, the BSIA published a short guide to becoming a Working Group expert in order to help businesses understand the benefits of being involved with standards development work. The guide outlines the type and frequency of contributions required as well as the opportunities for personal and professional development.

Mark Wherrett of the Synectics Systems Group chairs the BSIA’s CCTV Technical Committee. “Having knowledge of what elements standards are likely to cover allows me to advise my company of areas where products or practices may be non-compliant,” he explained. “This permits us to take the necessary corrective actions in advance of the publication of those standards. I also have the opportunity to use my expertise and experience to shape standards for the UK. This process is extremely useful for my own professional development.”

Representing the interests of BSIA members

Future changes to the CCTV landscape include the formulation of a CCTV Framework for the UK by the Surveillance Camera Commissioner as well as the imminent introduction of international standards (including the series of BS EN 62676 standards).

“The BSIA wields significant influence over these future developments,” stated Alex Carmichael. “As such, it’s more important than ever that the Association fully represents the interests of its members, and equally important for our members to play their own active role in the BSIA’s activities.”

One of the easiest ways in which companies might influence the rapidly developing CCTV landscape is to nominate an expert to a BSIA Working Group or BSIA Committee

One of the easiest ways in which companies might influence the rapidly developing CCTV landscape is to nominate an expert to a BSIA Working Group or BSIA Committee

*Membership of BSIA Working Groups and BSIA Committees is open to representatives of Association member companies only. To find out more about becoming a member of the BSIA visit: http://www.bsia.co.uk/join-the-bsia

**Existing BSIA members interested in taking a more active role in CCTV standards development can find out more by contacting the Association’s technical manager David Wilkinson via e-mail at: d.wilkinson@bsia.co.uk

***A copy of the guide entitled ‘Becoming a Working Group Expert’ – which sets out the requirements for potential nominees – may be downloaded from the BSIA’s website at: http://www.bsia.co.uk/app/images/publications/187-becoming-working-group-expert.pdf

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The Cardinal Group celebrates multiple triumphs at the 2014 Retail Fraud Awards

Security and loss prevention solutions and personnel provider The Cardinal Group is celebrating multiple award wins at the 2014 Retail Fraud Awards as its Ministry of Ideas, ORIS Media and not-for-profit initiatives ORIS Forums and the National Business Crime Solution businesses were recognised for delivering exceptional service across the fraud and loss prevention sectors.

First to be recognised and highly commended by the judges in the Best Newcomer – Technology Solution category was the Ministry of Ideas. This provides businesses with innovative, data-driven solutions that enable them to make accurate operational decisions based on historical, real-time and predictive data.

Using cutting-edge technologies to make sense out of data, the Ministry of Ideas assists in converting that data into meaningful and actionable information in real time, subsequently helping businesses to run more effectively and profitably.

The honour was awarded to the business for its ProInform software – a mobile optimised reporting platform that provides intuitive, graphical reporting and dashboard functionality. The software delivers real-time reporting, data aggregation and alerts based on information captured through a number of sources and delivered to loss prevention or retail professionals via a handheld tablet.

Double triumph for ORIS Media

Picking up not one but two awards on the night, The Cardinal Group’s ORIS Media scooped the Best Overall Product and Most Innovative Cross-Functionality Product – People and Process awards for its recently launched Loss Prevention Europe magazine.

A European version of the highly successful US publication distributed by the same name, the magazine was launched in December last year and has already attracted thousands of subscribers from across Europe.

The Cardinal Group triumphed in several categories of the Retail Fraud Awards 2014

The Cardinal Group triumphed in several categories of the Retail Fraud Awards 2014

Also highly commended in the Best Collaborative Solution category was ORIS Forums, a not-for-profit organisation that has been facilitating forums for the retail industry since 2006. The organisation currently represents more than 100 brands encompassing over 35,000 stores responsible for in excess of £200 billion worth of sales.

The ORIS Forums are designed to provide a non-competitive arena for honest and open collaboration, helping retailers to tackle common issues and identify effective and sustainable solutions. A wide range of cross-forum conferences are offered alongside events, analysts’ days and relevant industry research. More than 11 forums are available spanning a wide range of sectors.

Taking top spot in the Best Collaborative Solution category (and the final Cardinal Group business to enjoy the spotlight) was the National Business Crime Solution (NBCS). The NBCS is a not-for-profit initiative providing businesses with an opportunity to join a collaborative partnership that spans the public sector, private sector and law enforcement agencies.

It’s supported by the Association of Chief Police Officers and realises a central repository where business crime data is submitted, shared and analysed in order to determine key threats, linked crime series and national targets that can be investigated.

Hard work and dedication to the cause

Speaking about the award wins, Jason Trigg (CEO of The Cardinal Group) explained: “We’re delighted that these initiatives have been recognised at this year’s Retail Fraud Awards. Congratulations to the team members who have shown such hard work, dedication and passion around these initiatives. It’s great to see their efforts being recognised by the industry. We couldn’t be happier.”

One of The Cardinal Group's teams pick up their trophy

One of The Cardinal Group’s teams pick up their trophy

*The Fraud Awards (which took place in Leicester and attracted over 400 guests representing more than 80 per cent of the UK’s Top 250 retailers) were established to showcase and celebrate the very best in retail fraud and loss prevention, people, processes, strategy and technology

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Employees cost UK businesses £130,000 per annum in lost productivity managing passwords

According to new research conducted by Centrify Corporation (a leader in unified identity management across data centre, cloud and mobile platforms), poor password habits are not only placing employers at risk but also losing them hundreds of thousands of pounds in lost productivity every year.

The survey of 1,000 UK workers highlights that the average employee wastes £2611 each year in company time on trying to manage multiple passwords. For an organisation with 500 staff on the payroll, that equates to a loss of more than £130,000 every 12 months.

“In our new digital lifestyles, which see a blurring of the lines between our personal and professional lives, we’re constantly having to juggle multiple passwords for everything from e-mail and mobile apps through to online shopping and social media,” explained Barry Scott, CTO (EMEA) for Centrify.

“According to the results of our extensive survey, over a quarter of us now enter a password online more than ten times each day, which could equate to 3,500 to 4,000 times every year. This is becoming a real challenge for employers who need to manage security and privacy concerns, and also for employees who are costing their companies both time and money.”

While around half (47%) of those employees questioned use their personal mobile devices for business purposes, one-in-three (34%) admit they don’t actually use passwords on these devices even though they keep office e-mail, confidential documents, customer contact information and budget details on them.

Centrify's Infographic on Passwords

Centrify’s Infographic on Passwords

High on many people’s list of ‘most annoying things’, it seems that passwords are becoming the cause of major headaches. Centrify’s study reveals that forgetting a password for an online account is more annoying for individuals than misplacing their keys (39% of respondents), a mobile phone battery ceasing to work (37%) or receiving spam e-mail (31%).

One-in-six (16%) of respondents would rather sit next to someone talking loudly on their mobile phone, 13% would rather spend an hour on a customer service line and 12% would prefer to sit next to a crying baby on a flight than have to manage all of their passwords.

Multiple incorrect password entries

The Centrify research also shows:
• More than one-in-three (38%) employees have accounts they cannot access any more because they cannot remember the passwords
• 28% are locked out at least once a month due to multiple incorrect password entries
• One-in-five employees change their passwords at least once a month while 8% change them every week
• Most have little faith in password security – just 15% believe their passwords are ‘very secure’

With nearly half (42%) of respondents creating at least one new account profile every week – more than 50 per annum, in fact – the problems around password management will only worsen. In fact, 14% of employees quizzed believe they will have 100-plus passwords to deal with in the next five years.

Despite this, it’s believed that many employees already seriously underestimate the number of account profiles they have online, with nearly half (47%) believing they have just five profiles – although a quarter admit they harbour 21 or more.

Andy Kellett at analyst OVUM added: “When it comes to providing safe access to what should be highly secure business systems, the password model is no longer fit for purpose. It remains the primary security tool for businesses in environments where other authentication options should be considered. We used to go to work and stay in one place. Now we are just as likely to be working from a remote office, on the train or at home and simple passwords are neither robust nor secure enough to support secure remote access.”

Kellett added: “With today’s workforce also using social media and flexible remote tools and applications, we need to empower them to do this by allowing them to have more ownership of their identities and incorporate better, more balanced security measures that also improve productivity.”

Top 5 bad password practices

When asked what they do in order to remember their passwords, survey respondents stated that they:
(1) Always use the same password whenever possible
(2) Rotate through a variety of similar passwords
(3) Keep a written password in a master book of passwords
(4) Use personal information in a password
(5) Avoid using complicated symbols or combining upper and lower case

Barry Scott: Chief Technology Officer (EMEA) at Centrify

Barry Scott: Chief Technology Officer (EMEA) at Centrify

Top 5 password tips

To help employers, Centrify has complied a list of top tips on effective password management:

• Educate staff about using passwords – make it a key part of your corporate security policy
• Make it easier for employees to work anywhere, any time by using technology that offers single sign-on capabilities (ie one click to access all of their work accounts and applications)
• With some mobile phones now providing both identity and access management capabilities, incorporate them as part of your BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policy
• Create one profile for any corporate log-ins and then have privileges for individual employees within the one profile. Anyone who leaves the company can be removed automatically
• Think about replacing passwords with something much more intuitive like pass phrases.

The Widmeyer survey was developed to assess people’s engagement with – and their perception of – passswords in order to determine their efficacy in the workplace. The survey was completed in September 2014 with more than 1,000 participants in the UK and 1,000 in North America. Results were similar across both regions. The final results can be found at: http://www.centrify.com/Password-Survey

Reference

1Figure calculated by taking an average of the hourly rate of personal income from one’s job multiplied by the amount of time spent dealing with password management

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