Daily Archives: 26/01/2015

icomply partners with TIS in security upgrade project for Boots UK

icomply has recently partnered with TIS – one of the UK’s leading independent fire, security and communications specialists – in a project designed to overhaul the security systems operated by Boots UK.

The Security Control Room at Boots UK required an update, with many of the current analogue hardware deemed unfit for purpose and data gathering sometimes proving to be a difficult process.

The proposed solution consisted of upgrading 22 CRT monitors within the Control Room to just 8 LCD flat screens which would serve as a versatile and responsive display area for the network of cameras. Not only would this free up space in the Control Room, in turn making organisation and data collection a whole lot easier, but it also meant that more areas could be surveyed at any given time while the detail captured would be clearer and easier to record.

From icomply’s perspective, there was much work to do in what was a relatively short space of time. Centralised server software had to be installed in order to enable connectivity between the IP CCTV, IDS, intercom and access control systems while the central operator control system demanded involvement from a more general perspective.

Boots UK's Control Room

Boots UK’s Control Room

As stated, one of the biggest challenges was integrating the platform with varying equipment and different manufacturers’ devices. These included the Synectics matrix integration, PC232 integration and HIK and NVR integration.

Completely overhauled security regime

The end result is a completely overhauled system. The single front-end graphical user interface can be used effectively not only to gather and record data but also to review that information.

What Boots now has in its UK Control Room is a GUI with easier navigation and mapping which also unifies all technology in one intuitive space, in turn saving on desk space and making sure that Boots is absolutely ready for the next generation of security technology when it emerges without having to compromise in the short term.

Speaking about the project, Nick Hollins of TIS told Risk UK: “Boots UK is one of my key accounts, and when TIS was asked to look at upgrading the CCTV Control Room it was imperative that the solution I proposed was not only fit for purpose but also offered a significant improvement on the existing CCTV system. Of course, we also had to be mindful of the budget.”

Hollins added: “The assistance received from icomply all the way through this project was exceptional. Business development director Michael Gallagher was always was on hand to offer a technical solution and provide a quotation that was within budget and both the installation and post-installation support was of the very highest standards. This project was delivered on time, within budget and met our end user customers’ high standards and expectations. This was down to the teamwork and professionalism of both TIS and icomply.”

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Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude visits cyber security specialist Advent IM

The Rt Hon Francis Maude MP has visited West Midlands-based cyber security consultancy Advent IM as part of the MPs’ remit as the Minister for Cyber Security. 

Maude met with Mike Gillespie and Julia McCarron, the co-founders of Advent IM, to find out more about the cyber security work the company delivers as one of the UK’s leading independent information security consultancies, the company’s history, its ethos and the business challenges faced by the organisation as an SME.

Topics for discussion on the day were both wide and varied. Mike Gillespie explained the principles of a holistic and risk-based approach to security and the MP was particularly interested in how this translates into solid governance in business.

Maude was also keen to find out more about threat convergence, how cyber threats can now impact our physical environments and steps that can be taken to mitigate those threats.

The team expanded on Advent IM’s development of cyber security training courses specifically for the police in the areas of SIRO and IAO responsibilities and accountability, general cyber security awareness training opportunities currently being developed and Advent IM’s mentoring approach to consultancy delivery, ensuring the company is seen by those involved as a business enabler.

The Advent IM team members meet Francis Maude MP

The Advent IM team members meet Francis Maude MP

The G-Cloud procurement process

Maude and the team discussed the merits of the G-Cloud procurement process and how there’s room to improve the perception that it’s more for technology purchases than consultancy, and how Government is starting to drive the requirement for Best Practice information security and ISO 27001 (more of which anon) through its outsourced service providers.

Changes to the Government Security Classification Scheme and the lack of understanding around its application were touched upon, as were the issues being confronted by local authorities in connecting to PSN and how the latest changes would impact on those either connecting or acting as a provider.

The Cabinet Office Minister also took the time to discuss areas of work with Advent IM staff from the consultancy, marketing and sales teams and the challenges they face when it comes to implementing and promoting cyber security across the UK.

“We greatly appreciate the time Francis Maude has taken to visit us,” said Advent IM’s operations director Julia McCarron. “As cyber security specialists, a number of us have attended events where Mr Maude has been present but we’ve rarely had the opportunity to discuss with him what’s happening in the market or air our views fact-to-face. To be singled out and given the chance to discuss our company, the industry and involve all of our staff in that forum was an honour for the team.”

Advent IM's Mike Gillespie talks cyber security with Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude

Advent IM’s Mike Gillespie talks cyber security with Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude

Holistic security management solutions

Advent IM focuses on holistic security management solutions for information, people and physical assets across both the public and private sectors.

Established in 2002, Advent IM is a Centre of Excellence for security services, promoting the benefits of Best Practice guidelines and standards and the ongoing need to address risk management in order to protect against potential threats.

From offices in the Midlands and London, the company’s consultants work on a nationwide basis and are members of the CESG Listed Advisor Scheme, the Institute of Information Security Professionals, The Security Institute, the Business Continuity Institute and the British Computer Society.

Advent IM consultants are also lead auditors for the international standards on Information Security Management (ISO 27001) and Business Continuity Management (ISO 22301), practitioners of PRINCE2 (a recognised project management methodology widely used within the public sector), CISSP-qualified and also Home Office-trained physical security assessors.

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VMS developer Wavestore and NBM agree terms on distribution partnership

Wavestore, a leading global supplier of video management software (VMS), has agreed a new distribution partnership with NBM Distribution. Under the terms of the agreement, NBM Distribution will supply Wavestore’s hardware-based solutions to its extensive customer base of installers and systems integrators throughout the EMEA region. 

NBM Distribution was established in 1988 to service the growing demands of the computer network market. From an 11,000 sq ft warehouse located in Hemel Hempstead, the company offers the IT channel an extensive portfolio of network solutions developed by leading manufacturers including MOBOTIX, Allied Telesis, Synology, Brand-Rex, Netgenium, Redetec, Riello, GJD Technologies, Prism Enclosures and Rittal.

Supported by an ongoing commitment to provide all customers with the highest level of service in the data cabling industry, the company has increased its sales to over £9 million.

Danny Kindell: managing director of NBM Distribution

Danny Kindell: managing director of NBM Distribution

“We’ve decided upon a single vendor strategy in respect of video surveillance products and, on that basis, we carefully evaluated video management solutions from a wide range of manufacturers before reaching this distribution agreement with Wavestore,” said Danny Kindell, managing director of NBM Distribution.

“Wavestore’s open platform VMS will provide our customers with the option to deploy a video surveillance solution which can be integrated with a wide range of other  security and IT-related systems. It also works particularly well with Megapixel and 360-degree cameras manufactured by MOBOTIX whom we work with on an exclusive basis.”

Identifying new business opportunities

Also commenting on the new working arrangements, Chris Williams (director of Wavestore) said: “NBM Distribution’s in-depth knowledge and understanding of the network sector makes the company an ideal partner to help us identify new business opportunities within the IT channel. We’re looking forward to working with the NBM Distribution team to bring the benefits of our video management solutions to the attention of professionals who work within the network sector.”

Wavestore director Chris Williams

Wavestore director Chris Williams

Williams added: “The timing of this partnership agreement could not be better as it coincides with the imminent launch of Wavestore V6 which will incorporate a number of exciting and innovative new features. These include the EcoStore intelligent power saving hard drive management technology offering a potential power saving of up to 90% per hard drive. V6 will also feature Wavestore’s proprietary data storage solution. Its highly scalable recording design supports up to 64 Petabytes of storage per single volume, each with a capacity of up to 64 trillion images, and is configurable for an unlimited number of volumes.”

Wavestore is a powerful and user-friendly Linux-based video recording and management system able to simultaneously record images captured by combinations of analogue, IP, Megapixel, HD, HD-SDI and 360-degree cameras.

As a business, Wavestore is fully committed to an open platform philosophy. This enables the company to integrate and work closely with camera manufacturers and other third party technology partners in offering a comprehensive security solution which can include video analytics, access control, Command and Control, Physical Security Information Management (PSIM), motion detection, license plate recognition, abandoned object and intruder detection, people counting, perimeter security detection and traffic monitoring systems.

WaveView in operation

WaveView in operation

Wavestore’s video management software is ONVIF Profile S-conformant. Profile S describes the common functionalities shared by ONVIF-conformant video management systems and devices that send, configure, request or control the streaming of media data over an IP network, and includes specific features such as PTZ control, audio streaming and relay outputs.

Paradigm shift in the approach to VMS

The expertise of its hardware and software development teams ensures that Wavestore is able to react quickly to rapidly changing market demands. Indeed, many of the features incorporated within Wavestore V5 were introduced as a direct result of listening and responding to customer requirements.

Some of those features are unique to Wavestore. One such is de-warping software, which facilitates the recording and display of the fish-eye images captured by 180 and 360-degree panoramic cameras.

Wavestore’s DVRs, NVRs and HVRs are rugged, reliable and straightforward to install, configure and operate

Wavestore’s DVRs, NVRs and HVRs are rugged, reliable and straightforward to install, configure and operate

Developed on the Linux operating system, Wavestore’s DVRs, NVRs and HVRs are rugged, reliable and straightforward to install, configure and operate.

Wavestore systems are also easily expandable and upgradable as and when a client’s requirements change, while Wavestore’s powerful SDK and metadata capability enables integrated security solutions to be developed that will provide a rapid response to dynamic events for end users.

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Help for Heroes announced as The Security Institute’s Chairman’s Charity in 2015

The Security Institute has announced that its designated Chairman’s Charity for 2015 will be Help for Heroes. The charity offers comprehensive support to British servicemen and women who have been wounded or injured in the line of duty – a cause that’s clearly close to The Security Institute’s heart in light of the fact that many of the organisation’s members have served their country across the Armed Forces.

Since its founding in October 2007, the money raised by Help for Heroes thanks to hugely generous public backing has been used to support the wounded, but there’s still so much more to do.

Soldiers, sailors and airmen injured today will still need vital support tomorrow and in the days that follow.

The Security Institute director Richard Bell commented: “We try to select a charity partner that will be highly relevant to our membership and which we believe is making a significant difference to the lives of the people it aims to help. Many of our members have served in the military and while they have been fortunate to be able to forge new careers in security upon leaving the Armed Forces, many of their former colleagues face significant challenges as a result of injuries suffered in the line of duty.”

The Security Institute's designated Chairman's Charity for 2015 is Help for Heroes

The Security Institute’s designated Chairman’s Charity for 2015 is Help for Heroes

Bell’s comments were endorsed by The Security Institute’s chairman Emma Shaw CSyP. “We are immensely proud to be supporting a charity that has achieved so much in a relatively short space of time,” explained Shaw. “Last year, we raised almost £30,000 for our charity partner PTSD Resolution I’m confident we can surpass that figure in 2015. We have a number of fund-raising activities planned throughout the coming year and will be seeking to raise awareness of Help for Heroes at all of our events.”

Bryn Parry, co-founder of Help for Heroes, added: “We’d like to thank The Security Institute for choosing Help for Heroes as its Chairman’s Charity for 2015. The Institute’s support will make a huge difference to the lives of some very brave men and women. The war in Afghanistan may be nearly over but, for many members of the Armed Forces and their families, their battles are just beginning. We will not let them battle alone.”

*For further information access the Help for Heroes website

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