Daily Archives: 18/04/2016

VCA’s analytics energise security and operations for oil and gas sector

Video analytics is increasingly being used as a powerful tool to help remotely monitor and protect vulnerable facilities such as gas and oil pipelines. According to Michael von Hauff, CEO of Osprey Informatics, it can also assist operations managers to improve productivity for the host organisation.

Since it was established in 2012, Osprey Informatics has been on a mission to revolutionise the use of video to automate and remotely manage industrial operations. Unlike traditional video surveillance models, the company believes that visual information should not be the exclusive domain of corporate security, but rather seen as an asset that can be used throughout an organisation, with a measurable return on investment.

Indeed, it’s this philosophy that has resulted in Osprey Informatics acquiring a long list of prestigious clients, among them Husky Energy and the Pembina Pipeline Corporation.

“A recent report published by MarketsandMarkets Research estimates the oil and gas security and service market will grow from a value of USD26.34 billion in 2015 to USD33.90 billion by 2020,” said von Hauff. “Perhaps this isn’t surprising given the ever-increasing sophisticated activities of organised criminal gangs, as well as the risk of terrorist attacks which can result in major disruption to supplies and potential loss of life, as well as damage to the environment.”

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Continuing this theme, von Hauff stated: “With this in mind, our clients are looking to invest in the latest video surveillance technology to ensure they can respond effectively to any threats. We have helped our clients achieve this objective by relying on VCA’s analytics solutions to play a key role.”

Event detection

VCA analytics, developed in the UK by a team of computer vision scientists, can detect movement within very small areas of a video image and provide operators with a powerful ‘exception’ reporting tool to help identify suspicious activity and, when appropriate, despatch security officers or quickly report the incident to one of the Emergency Services.

The ability to do this is significant as it’s widely acknowledged that operators can miss important events after monitoring video for more than 30 minutes or so. The possibility of this happening is increased when individual operators are tasked to view multiple screens.

Not to be confused with Video Motion Detection (VMD), which works on the basis of detecting changes in the light scales of pixels within a video image, VCA analytics is able to provide a far more reliable and accurate solution. It does so by analysing on a frame-by-frame basis the metadata related to the motion and properties of objects within a video stream. The result is a high detection rate and a dramatic reduction in the kind of false alarms that can be generated by VMD software.

Productivity, safety and security

“As part of an integrated video surveillance solution, VCA analytics can provide immediate access to images relevant to urgent operational events, allowing operators to respond quickly to production and environmental incidents as well as security threats,” added von Hauff.

“Companies operating in the oil and gas sector understand the need to protect the environment. They also take the responsibility of creating safe working conditions for employees very seriously and recognise the importance of compliance with Health and Safety policies. VCA analytics can clearly help in these areas. The same technology can be deployed to identify opportunities for improving operational efficiencies. It does this by providing accurate data on a wide range of activities, such as the movement of vehicles and personnel at facilities and remote sites.”

von Hauff cites Pembina Pipeline Corporation, which has grown into one of Canada’s largest integrated energy infrastructure companies over the last six decades, as an excellent example of one of its clients that has embraced video analytics as a way of protecting its investment in the infrastructure used to transport oil and natural gas across North America.

Using its own brand of HD IP cameras and domes with VCA analytics on board, Osprey Informatics has supplied a state-of-the-art monitoring solution that provides the Pembina Pipeline Corporation with a high level of situational awareness through the use of innovative, user-friendly technology to protect its people, assets and the environment.

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Honeywell expands Performance Series IP camera family

Honeywell has expanded its Performance Series IP camera family to include a new range of affordable, high-quality IP cameras that are easy to install, use and maintain.

The range introduces seven new IP cameras in dome, ball and bullet design, all of them perfect for commercial settings such as office buildings, retail stores and warehouses.

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Selected cameras from the new collection use Motorised Focal Zoom technology, which auto-focuses the lens after zoom operation. This allows the system installer to fine-tune camera focus and field of view off the ladder, making the install process easy and saving on labour costs.

Additionally, each camera captures crisp, clear images with high-resolution pixel detail, and offers correct object-aspect ratio to avoid on-screen distortion.

The cameras can be used immediately with Honeywell’s Performance Series embedded NVRs upon installation and are backed up by full customer support.

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Qognify’s Situator 8.0 chosen as finalist for Benchmark Innovation Awards 2016

Qognify Situator 8.0 has been selected as a finalist in the Site Protection Software category of the Benchmark Innovation Awards 2016. These annual awards recognise and reward innovative thinking and the delivery of benefits through advanced security solutions.

Launched by Qognify in February this year, Situator 8.0 adds actionable intelligence capabilities to the Situation Management platform with its new Operational Intelligence Center (OIC) module.

OIC helps organisations better leverage the Big Data flowing into their security and operational Control Centres. It constantly monitors data captured by Situator 8.0 and other systems and sources.

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The OIC features an advanced rule engine and business intelligence visualisation tools which build on Situator’s advanced situation management capabilities, correlation engine and Standard Operating Procedures, in turn yielding an enterprise-wide view of business performance against the host organisation’s own KPIs through the prisms of current business status, its trending performance as well as predictive view.

Moti Shabtai, president of Qognify, commented: “We’re proud that the innovation we have brought to market within Situator 8.0 and particularly the OIC has been recognised by the Benchmark Innovation Awards and Benchmark Magazine. Through Situator 8.0 and the OIC, we’re taking situational awareness to the next level.”

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Moti Shabtai

Shabtai added: “Actionable Intelligence is about delivering insight on what’s happening or unfolding, together with critical ‘what to do next’ guidance. Relying on smart trend analysis, organisations will be able not only to handle incidents in the most effective manner, but also to be more proactive, anticipate events and align performance with business objectives.”

*The winners of the Benchmark Innovation Awards will be announced by Risk UK’s sister title Benchmark Magazine in July

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Reports of evidence loss on supposed eve of digital evidence mandate

Is it a coincidence that the revelations of evidence loss have hit the headlines as we approach the deadline of the Home Office mandate for digital evidence compliance, which comes into effect at the end of April? writes Jamie Wilson.

Given that, since the mandate was announced, there has been very little publicity surrounding the ‘stick’ approach towards driving forces to implement digital evidence management strategies, I suspect that it is indeed a coincidence.

The BBC has revealed the findings of a joint Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary report which says that there was a “widespread issue” involving the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) “misplacing discs containing sensitive evidence and information”.

For members of the public reading such an article it is sure to shock, but for those working in police forces right across England and Wales it may not be such a huge surprise.

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Jamie Wilson

Discs are essentially physical pieces of evidence that need to be manually logged, booked-in, stored and retrieved, etc. With so many discs in circulation and physical storage space being limited, it’s perhaps not unexpected that on occasion they can be misplaced.

In 2014, the then policing and criminal justice minister Damian Green announced that by the end of April this year, all forces in England and Wales must be capable of sharing evidence digitally with the CPS and the courts.

One of the anticipated outcomes that this initiative would lead to was a significant drop in the use of discs as forces move towards lower cost, more secure and faster digital methods of capturing, securely storing and sharing evidence – recordings from Command and Control, body-worn camera feeds, videos and photos, etc.

What I’ve seen in the past 12 months from forces I’ve visited, or spoken with, has been hugely positive. There’s undoubtedly a concerted effort being made by senior officers to push forward the digital evidence agenda.

They’re being driven not just by a mandated obligation (if indeed this remains the case?), but a recognition of the operational rewards it can bring in closing cases quicker and making far better use of scant resources, enabling officers to do what they’re trained to do rather than creating, curating and couriering discs.

Jamie Wilson is Public Safety Marketing Manager (EMEA) at NICE Systems

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360 Vision Technology set to showcase camera range at CCTV User Group Conference

360 Vision Technology, the CCTV design and manufacturing company, will be displaying its range of cameras at the forthcoming CCTV User Group Conference, which runs from 23-25 May at the Chesford Grange Hotel in Kenilworth.

Designed to deliver advanced situational awareness, identification and alert to activity within any surveillance application, 360 Vision Technology’s standard and high-performance imaging cameras will be on show.

Suitable for internal and external use, site perimeters, sterile and hazardous zones and zero light surveillance, 360 Vision Technology’s Predator all-in-one integrated surveillance cameras are available in a number of integrated technology options and with integrated IR and white light LED illuminators.

For any general through to high-security applications, 360 Vision Technology’s range of Predator analogue/HD Hybrid, polished stainless steel and radar cameras can supply the perfect imaging solution, also demonstrating full integration with a wide variety of systems control software.

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“No matter what the requirement, 360 Vision Technology has a surveillance camera model suitable for delivering advanced detection and identification across a wide range of demanding conditions,” explained Mark Rees, business development director at 360 Vision Technology.

“Whether the conditions are zero light, fog or long distance, our range of integrated radar, thermal, Hybrid and stainless steel imaging cameras combine rugged build quality with proven reliability in the field.”

The 360 Vision team will be on hand throughout the conference to discuss camera specifications or any existing or future surveillance project requirements.

*In the meantime, further information about 360 Vision Technology’s full range of camera products can be found at: www.360visiontechnology.com

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Genetec introduces new subscription-based ownership model for Security Center

Genetec, a leading provider of open architecture, unified IP security solutions, has announced a new subscription model for its flagship unified security platform designated Genetec Security Center.

Security Center Subscription introduces new flexible ownership and payment options that allow customers to gain access to Security Center on a ‘pay-as-you-go’ basis. Subscribing customers receive the same local, on-premises version of Security Center and pay for it on a monthly or annual basis, as opposed to purchasing the entire system up front.

When purchasing on subscription, customers also benefit from the Genetec online support resources and qualified support professionals’ expertise either by phone or through live chat, as well as access to Security Center Cloud services with risk-free trials included in the price.

Security Center Subscription is available immediately through the new Genetec self-service portal.

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Changing business model

A recent Gartner industry report noted that, by 2020, more than 80% of software vendors will change their business model from traditional license and maintenance to subscription, regardless of whether the software resides on-premises or in the cloud.

Along with the flexibility and affordability of a subscription model, the Gartner report finds that the value of short-term predictability trumps long-term costs, particularly when the ease of adding or relinquishing licenses is included in the picture.

The subscription model also moves the purchases from capital expenditure (CAPEX) to operational expenditure (OPEX). This enables customers who are looking to upgrade their systems to Security Center to do so from operational budgets allocated to their older, less capable security software.

“In the past few years, companies like Adobe, IBM, Oracle, Netflix and many other software companies have adopted flexible buying models with impressive success, offered as Technology-as-a-Service via the cloud or as a traditional on-premises installation with monthly or annual renewals,” said Andrew Elvish, vice-president of product management and marketing at Genetec.

“Genetec is leading the way in the physical security industry by offering customers an alternative ownership option for our successful video surveillance platform. Not only will customers enjoy the same fully-featured version of Security Center, but they will do so with lower up front expenditures, predicable recurring costs and access to the latest releases and Genetec support resources, all at no additional charge.”

Introducing Security Center Compact

As part of its new subscription model, Genetec is introducing Security Center Compact, a new entry-level edition of Security Center.

Only available through subscription, Security Center Compact supports up to 25 cameras and provides an easy ‘no training required’ option for customers with basic video management requirements.

A good fit for smaller sites, Security Center Compact systems can also be linked to larger systems through the Genetec Federation feature, allowing for centralised monitoring (as seen with city-wide surveillance and multi-site businesses or campuses).

The Compact edition features all of the camera integrations available in the enterprise edition of the software such that customers can choose the vendors they want to work with and design a system that best suits their business.

In addition to providing smaller site video surveillance, Security Center Compact offers a clear path as an organisation’s security needs evolve over time. Security Center Compact end users can simply update their subscription and purchase a higher edition of Security Center as their system grows, in turn avoiding the need to install and/or re-deploy new system software.

Introductory 90-Day Trial for Compact Edition

Beginning this month, Genetec-certified channel partners can sign up for a 90-day trial of Security Center Compact. To take advantage of this limited-time promotion, channel partners should visit the Genetec Channel Partner Portal for an instant download.

*For more information about Genetec Security Center Subscription and Genetec Security Center Compact visit: http://www.genetec.com/subscribe

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Xtralis VESDA-E smoke detectors and PRO E-PIR detectors win MTP Gold Medals

Xtralis has announced that the VESDA-E VEU aspirating smoke detector (ASD) and the ADPRO PRO-E 400H passive infrared (PIR) long-range detector have both won prestigious MTP Gold Medals, which are to be awarded at the SECUREX 2016 International Security Exhibition. The show runs from 25-28 April in Poznan, Poland.

The Miedzynarodowe Targi Poznanskie (MTP) Gold Medal is one of the most recognisable awards in the Polish and central European markets, and is given to innovative products of the highest quality.

Each year, nearly 500 products are entered into the competition and judged based upon innovation, functionality, design and total cost of ownership.

In 2016, the expert Judging Panel consisted of representatives from the University of Technology in Poznań, the Institute of Precision Mechanics (Warsaw), the Polish Chamber of Alarm Systems (PISA) and the Polish Association of Security and Security Management Engineers and Technicians (POLALARM).

Gold Medal winners are eligible for a Consumer’s Choice Award, which is open for voting to the public.

XtralisMTP

“We’re delighted to be awarded two prestigious MTP Gold Medals for Xtralis safety and security solutions,” commented Mick Goodfellow, vice-president of European Union and Middle East sales for Xtralis.

“These influential awards are a true validation of Xtralis’ innovation, quality and reliability in both life safety and security, and will help to raise awareness of our solutions in the central European markets,” added Goodfellow.

“VESDA-E VEU is clearly the new standard for smoke detection, while PRO-E PIRs deliver superior perimeter protection over the longest range. Customers need these safety and security solutions today. The Gold Medals are a mark of distinction which will help raise awareness about solution benefits for our customers.”

The VEU ASDs are the premium detectors of the VESDA-E range. They feature 15x greater sensitivity, an 80% increase in coverage and longer pipe runs versus VESDA – all at a 15% reduction in total cost of ownership.

In addition, VESDA-E detectors offer future-proof expandability, smoke analytics and “unprecedented” connectivity for remote monitoring and management. To learn more visit www.xtralis.com/VESDA-E

The ADPRO PRO E-400H PIR detector is the ‘flagship’ of the Xtralis PIR family. With a nominal range of 220 metres, the detector is designed for one-man installation and features sophisticated 3D-tamper (pan/tilt/move) protection, IP connectivity and wireless communication or even battery operation (in combination with renewable energy sources).

With these awards, in just a few years Xtralis has now won close to 50 honours from across the globe. Recently, the Xtralis IntrusionTrace video content analytic was named as a finalist in the Intelligent Solutions category of the Benchmark Innovation Awards 2016.

Only recently, Xtralis showcased its safety and security solutions, including VESDA-E VEU and ADPRO PIRs, at ISC West (which ran from from April 6-8 at the Sands Expo Centre in Las Vegas, Nevada).

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