Tag Archives: Communications

ANT Telecom announces detail of strategic partnership with Motorola Solutions

Automated communications specialist ANT Telecom has joined forces with Motorola Solutions as part of its PartnerEmpower Programme to support its Digital Mobile Radio (DMR) and related communication application portfolio throughout the UK.

Motorola Solutions introduced the PartnerEmpower programme in 2010 to bring forward new opportunities for collaboration in delivering customer solutions. The programme leverages Best-in-Class mobility and communications technology, enabling partners such as ANT Telecom to collaborate with an internationally recognised brand that has a strong reputation for delivering high-quality products and services.

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As part of the PartnerEmpower Programme, ANT Telecom has also extended its own product portfolio to present greater choice to its customers. Products such as Motorola’s Wave and its radio to smart phone integration, as well as its DMR radios (including trunked systems and applications) have enabled the company to further enhance its lone worker and critical alarm management solutions, thereby empowering customers to improve safety and efficiency within their businesses.

Klaus Allion, managing director at ANT Telecom, explained to Risk Xtra: “The partnership compliments our aim of providing better protection for employees and businesses through integrated communication solutions. For over 30 years now, we’ve helped organisations with a highly mobile workforce to communicate effectively with their colleagues, customers and suppliers.”

Allion concluded: “As part of the PartnerEmpower Programme, we’ll also have wider access to alternative avenues to increase market presence, drive sales and strengthen our offer. We’re very much looking forward to seeing how our partnership with Motorola continues to evolve.”

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ANT Telecom concludes research project on companies’ communications, lone worker and critical alert procedures

Automated communication specialist ANT Telecom has recently completed research designed to unearth a better understanding of how businesses communicate and respond to incidents in the workplace.

Within its research, ANT Telecom looked at the range of devices employees were using to communicate with colleagues, including lone workers, as well as incident reporting and response timings and the resulting impact these factors have on business continuity in the workplace.

From the variety of communications business have available to adopt, a GSM mobile solution was the most prevalent, with 76.92% confirming it as their preferred device to keep upon their person. However, the research also showed that an overwhelming percentage (71.43%, in fact) used their devices for voice only, leaving just 28.57% with the means necessary to receive real-time plant processing updates and critical alerts directly to their device.

This approach is likely to affect machine downtime and product wastages as employees cannot benefit from instant alerts if an incident occurs, which is greatly beneficial to keeping production lines and machinery running smoothly.

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However, real-time information is of no value whatsoever if it’s not used effectively. It’s therefore essential to assess how machine alerts could and should be used to facilitate the quickest response possible.

Machine maintenance

Machine maintenance is also a large part of a company’s communication and its impact on production was also a subject raised in the research. The majority (32%) of those who answered confirmed that it would take between zero and two minutes for an engineer to be notified if a problem occurred with a piece of machinery on the manufacturing or production site, but over 38% stated that this would take more than ten minutes, with 6% confirming it would take over 30 minutes for their business.

Those surveyed were also asked if their alert system automatically distributed machine or processing faults directly to a qualified engineer, who would then attend to the fault, and 73% answered ‘No’. Of course, manufacturing plants have been collecting alert information from machines for years. Supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems for remote monitoring and control are a standard component of any operating environment, providing a single view of equipment performance on a large screen in a Control Room.

More recently, these systems have gone mobile, offering operators and maintenance engineers alike the chance to view the red, amber and green alerts on a tablet while on, or away from, the factory floor. That’s great, but the way in which organisations respond to these alerts is still, in the main, archaic.

A red alert could prompt a generic page message to which any number of individuals may or may not respond. Alternatively, an operator viewing the red alert on the SCADA screen has to call the engineering team leader who will access a control panel to understand the true nature of the problem and only then identify and contact a team member to resolve the issue.

Impact on productivity

An overwhelming 88% of respondents felt that machine faults impacted productivity in some way, while 44.44% of those questioned thought that the time taken to detect a fault through to a qualified engineer resolving the issue could be reduced. There are numerous ways in which businesses can address this issue in a proactive manner.

Direct integration between a communication system and a control panel, for example, provides immediate information about the nature of the fault. By designing and configuring a smart workflow, it then ensures the communication system automatically contacts the most relevant team, such as electrical engineering specialists, thereby eliminating a number of time-consuming manual steps. Once the designated team member has received the notification, they can confirm their attendance and, critically, provide updates on the repair resolution.

The results of this research highlight some prominent issues for businesses that must be addressed and acted upon accordingly. In an era where increasing regulatory scrutiny is matched by rapid advances in disruptive innovation, there can be no excuse for companies who fail to take advantage of the best available technology. To optimise such technology, it makes sense to partner with a trusted expert, evaluate your exposure and plan for a safer and more connected future.

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Inner Range to unveil Integriti Encrypted High Security integrated access control and security system at IFSEC International 2017

We live in an era where criminal activity has become more sophisticated and information about system hacking more readily available. With organisations being more vulnerable to attack, access control and security system manufacturer Inner Range is addressing the challenge for the security industry by adding another system to its already strong portfolio: Integriti Encrypted High Security.

Launching at IFSEC International 2017, Inner Range’s Integriti Encrypted High Security is an integrated access control and security system offering the pioneering integrated security and building management functionality of its flagship brand Integriti, but with the added advantage of being end-to-end fully encrypted to 128 bit with Mac authentication. Data encryption ensures secure LAN communications at all times, while continuous monitoring detects any fault or attempted module substation.

Chantel Smith, business development manager at Inner Range Europe, commented: “Integriti Encrypted High Security delivers end-to-end full encryption, which is essential for buildings and facilities that are of critical importance to national infrastructure and for Data Centres and research labs where there’s a heightened security risk.”

Smith continued: “Equally, we’re experiencing an increase in demand for systems from organisations big and small that don’t necessarily need end-to-end encryption to meet regulatory requirements, but understand the importance of adding an extra layer of protection for their buildings.”

InnerRangeIntegritiHighSecurity The Integriti Encrypted High Security system comprises a suite of products which together offer all the elements necessary to build a fully-integrated high security system that provides complete end-to-end data encryption. The Integriti range of products includes controllers, input expansion modules, end of line modules, keypads, card readers, power supplies and equipment enclosures.

The system’s modular design delivers scope for expansion while also boasting hybrid architecture which supports both high security and standard commercial grade (resistor network) areas at the same facility at the same time. The end result is a single, holistic and affordable security solution for the entire organisation.

Expansion of the Integriti system is achieved by installing additional encrypted modules to the high security controller’s RS-485 LAN or adding additional controllers to the system. The entire platform, including multiple controllers, can be managed from the Integriti Enterprise software.

*Visit Inner Range Europe on Stand E1400 at IFSEC International 2017

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IS cyber attack on the UK “could cripple all forms of communication and infrastructure” warns Bitdefender

Following the news that the British Government is set to double UK cyber crime funding to combat the IS threat, Catalin Cosoi (chief security strategist at Bitdefender) offers an insight into what an Islamic State-orchestrated cyber attack might look like and where defences must be improved.

“A cyber attack from Islamic State could have devastating consequences for British businesses and infrastructure.

“As organisations continue to deploy innovate technologies to increase productivity, the number of attack surfaces is increasing and leaving businesses exposed.

“A possible worst case scenario is the crippling of all communication and critical infrastructures, ranging from mobile phones to water supplies, electricity and gas. This could be co-ordinated alongside a physical tactical assault, as disrupting any form of communication or Internet-connected technology could be used as a serious tactical advantage on the ground.

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“It’s conceivable that, although IS might not have the necessary technical skills, it could potentially outsource these types of attack to parties that do. After all, the black market is now riddled with such services, all waiting for the right buyer.

“Adding £1.9 billion per annum to the budget for fighting cyber crime is a step in the right direction, but this needs to be supported with an extensive review of critical infrastructure.

“There have been several incidents where industrial SCADA systems have been found plugged directly into the Internet and accessible by anyone. If this situation doesn’t change, we’re leaving the door open for any organised attacker including IS.”

Security threat countermeasures

Catalin Cosoi’s work is helping to set the agenda for the development of new security threat countermeasures.

Over the last 11 years, Cosoi has acquired a thorough understanding of key areas of technology such as cloud computing, outbreak detection, proactive phishing detection and mobile threats.

Bitdefender is a global security technology company that delivers solutions in more than 100 countries through a network of value-added alliances, distributors and reseller partners.

Since 2001, Bitdefender has consistently produced award-winning business and consumer security technology, and is a leading security provider in virtualisation and cloud technologies.

*More information is available at: http://www.bitdefender.com/

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