Tag Archives: Smart Phones

NATO selects BlackBerry’s encrypted voice technology for secure calls

The NATO Communications and Information (NCI) Agency has awarded a contract for BlackBerry’s SecuSUITE for Government to encrypt the conversations of its technology and cyber leaders wherever they communicate – in the workplace, at home or when travelling abroad.

The NCI Agency helps NATO’s 29 Member Nations communicate securely and work together in smarter ways. It acquires, deploys and defends communication systems for NATO’s political decision-makers and Command Centres, working on the front lines against cyber attacks. Due to the classified nature of the information the NCI Agency handles, it’s critical that all communications remain secure, combating any opportunity for a cyber criminal to electronically eavesdrop on conversations.

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“As cyber criminals and state-sponsored actors become increasingly more sophisticated, we needed a highly secure way for our cyber leaders to have phone conversations with people inside and outside of our organisation regardless of where they are in the world,” said Kevin Scheid, general manager of the NCI Agency. “BlackBerry’s voice encryption technology helps solve this challenge and strengthens our elite cyber defence strategy.”

Dr Christoph Erdmann, senior vice-president of BlackBerry SecuSMART at BlackBerry, responded: “Eavesdropping on calls is one of the easiest ways to gain access to private information. We’re extremely proud that the NCI Agency, a world leader in the development and use of technology that keeps NATO nations secure, has put its trust in BlackBerry’s software to secure voice communication. No matter the operating system or ‘thing’ used to communicate, BlackBerry’s arsenal of cyber security technology ensures that our customers’ data remains private.”

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BlackBerry’s SecuSUITE for Government supports Android and iOS smart phones and tablets, and can be can be installed on-premise, in a Data Centre or in the cloud.

Use cases for the solution include: 

*Secure conferencing: Encrypts conversations between a secure conference bridge and a SecuSUITE for Government-enabled devices

*Secure landing: Encrypts mobile devices to a landline within a network

*Break-in: Protects any communication between a mobile or landline on the user’s home network to a SecuSUITE for Government-enabled mobile device

*Break-out: Secures mobile devices to the employee’s home network and from there to external mobile or landlines through PSTN extension

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SecuSUITE for Government has been evaluated and certified to be compliant with the Common Criteria protection profile for VoIP applications and SIP servers. It has also earned a NIAP certification and has been placed on the NSA Commercial Solutions for Classified Program component list of products certified for use on classified systems.

*For more information on BlackBerry’s SecuSUITE for Government visit blackberry.com/government

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Cable-free access control solutions specialist LOCKEN celebrates 15 years of innovation in security sector

LOCKEN was established in 2003, combining the knowledge and expertise of its three founders: Arnaud Flecchia, Roland de la Chapelle and Stéphane Conreux. Those founders have “transformed” the business of access control thanks to breakthrough technology based on intelligent keys and user-friendly software, bringing to market a solution that required no wiring or maintenance. This was a remarkable leap forward that has fully benefited security provision for major telecoms, energy and water distribution infrastructures, where isolated and sensitive external sites are the norm.

In 2004, just a year after the company was established, the LOCKEN key was sending its data via a remote device directly connected to the system. Awarded the Trophée de l’Innovation in 2007, LOCKEN picked up the pace of innovation from then on.

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In 2009, the company released the LOCKEN Web Request software application, a complementary module improving co-ordination of the activities of technicians on sites. 2014 saw the advent of the MyLocken application and new customised services were developed around access control. 

The following year, the application took on a new dimension in order to meet the specific needs of customers with customised functions, such as authorisations, declarations of presence on site and reporting of anomalies, combined with new technologies like beacon and RFID.

In 2015, LOCKEN completed development of the software application termed LOCKEN Smart Access (LSA), the first multi-technology access management platform, making it a major breakthrough that would emerge as the cornerstone of its future strategy since the system was now capable of controlling different types of identifiers such as keys, badges and smart phones.

Last year, LSA’s ergonomics were upgraded to a more graphic approach in line with new practices using applications like Google Maps.

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Over time, major companies in the transport industry, banking and local Government sectors have followed the lead of multi-site companies and turned to LOCKEN for assistance, attracted by its “customer business line optimisation” philosophy.

In 2016, the merger with Italian manufacturer ISEO opened up new avenues and the contactless key with a Bluetooth module arrived on the scene. More efficient and more secure, it has allowed LOCKEN to build leading-edge equipment into its offer.

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Nittan’s collection of technical guidance videos now available to view on YouTube

Nittan Europe, the manufacturer of conventional and addressable fire detection products, has released seven new technical guidance videos on its YouTube channel. These follow on the back of its previous highly successful videos, which form part of Nittan’s customer experience, enabling the business to connect with end customers via different mediums.

Presented by product support manager Barry Sargent, the videos address frequently asked questions relating to the Nittan evolution1 Fire Alarm Control Panel. These include the panel’s quick start option, set up, navigation, ‘Cause and Effect’ programming, a PC configuration tool overview and PC configuration tool ‘Cause and Effect’, in addition to Nittan’s Evolution Loop Calculator.

The videos provide simple step-by-step instructions that aim to serve as a guide or memory jogger for engineers such that they can the most advantage for Nittan products on behalf of their end users.

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Lee James, general manager for product marketing at Nittan Europe, said: “The short video format with clips of between two and four minutes has proven very popular with our customers. We’re providing quick bursts of information in an easy-to-assimilate way. Our customers now have easy access to technical guidance on site or in their office with video clips literally at their fingertips via smart phones and tablets. We aim to continue building our video library in the coming months. The video clips are a guide and not intended to replace official manufacturer training which Nittan continues to provide free of charge at its Old Woking offices.”

*The new technical guidance videos can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/user/NittanChannel/videos

**Also available on the channel are existing videos about Nittan’s Dual Optical Detector and how to use the EV-AD2-EXT Evolution Programmer

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84% of small businesses call for intelligent video surveillance as existing systems “fail to protect premises”

A survey1 of small businesses in the UK has discovered that 84% of retail, office and hospitality owners are looking for video surveillance with high resolution images and intelligent features such as remote monitoring to provide superior security for their premises.

85% of respondents also stated that high quality and reliability would be important purchasing considerations when looking to invest in video surveillance.

The survey demonstrates a wide consensus among small business owners that current surveillance solutions in place are not viable to provide the necessary proof of crime at a time when the cost of shop theft is at an all-time high2. It also reveals that new technology is sought to provide the required security level within a given business.

Axis Communications carried out the survey in order to establish small business owners’ key challenges regarding video surveillance and how they believe it could be improved. In addition to stating that high quality images and the ability to access footage remotely on a smart phone or other device is desirable, 70% also suggested that ease-of-use is also high on the agenda.

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In light of accessible intelligent technology, 82% of small business owners are considering new video surveillance technology for their premises in order to provide a more up-to-date solution.

The survey results also demonstrate the challenges currently faced by small business owners in regards to their existing video surveillance solutions. A number of factors were revealed as unsatisfactory within their present set-up, including poor quality of images and difficulty of use.

These small business owners reported facing issues with their current video surveillance including “bad quality of system”, “lack of ability to monitor outside of premises” and providing “limited proof of crime”. This feedback further confirms the desire for more intelligent surveillance solutions to help protect businesses and make staff feel safe.

Atul Rajput, regional director for Northern Europe at Axis Communications, observed: “Pioneering technology and the benefits that come with it shouldn’t be limited to corporate entities. With the help of dedicated IT and security installers, the network camera is becoming more accessible and affordable for the small business than ever before. Many small business owners have an awareness that high quality, intelligent solutions are available and are looking for guidance as to how they can make the most of this to protect their premises and, ultimately, their bottom line. A rise in theft and the continued improvements in technology such as remote monitoring and high-quality images are only set to exacerbate this situation.”

Rajput continued: “As legacy video surveillance solutions become obsolete, we’re witnessing a shift in the ways small businesses adopt new solutions. Once regarded as a standalone investment, many now consider IP cameras as a vital upgrade that forms a part of their larger IT infrastructure. Along with this, end users are also looking to remotely access live and pre-recorded video footage anytime and anywhere. The ultimate benefit of this is a solution that delivers information rapidly and cost-effectively and that can benefit from the latest applications as and when they become available.”

References 

1Research was conducted by OnePoll independent market researchers on behalf of Axis Communications between 22 July and 10 August 2016 via an online survey. 500 UK business owners of companies with 1-20 employees that would be involved in the decision to purchase video surveillance equipment for their company premises were surveyed

2http://brc.org.uk/news/2016/cost-of-theft-for-retailers-at-highest-level-since-records-began

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Wavestore introduces free Mobile app for end users

To further enhance the flexibility and ease of use of its award-winning Video Management Software (VMS), Wavestore has introduced a free Mobile app to allow authorised end users to securely view live images or playback recorded video via a smart phone or tablet.

With organisations and businesses becoming increasingly concerned about the challenges around protecting confidential data, the WaveView Mobile app has been designed to provide verification via a Wavestore server’s public key that the person attempting to view the video is indeed an authorised user.

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“Despite a high level of security, end users will find that they can quickly log on to the WaveView Mobile app and they’ll find it very easy to use, making it ideal for people who are on the move or want to keep an eye on what’s going on at their premises out of hours,” said Julian Inman, product manager at Wavestore.

Wavestore has packed the WaveView Mobile app with user-friendly features such as the option to choose from different multi-camera layouts and the ability to select from a range of sub-titles to be displayed on screen, such as time, camera or server name.

Available free in iOS and Android versions from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store respectively, the WaveView Mobile App allows users to ‘time jump’ in order to instantly view recorded video. It also features pre-set and ‘gesture’ PTZ control.

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Leading charity RNIB turns to Guardian24 for lone worker protection via smart phone app

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has turned to Guardian24 to help the organisation make good on its Duty of Care towards the charity’s lone workers by equipping them with the latest in smart phone app technology. That software enables all solution end users to quickly and discreetly raise an alarm in the event of an emergency scenario, even when the phone’s keypad is locked.

The RNIB deploys a large number of staff who visit people in their homes and offer support to meet the needs of blind and partially-sighted individuals. However, the majority of these staff work alone. As there’s no immediate help at hand, lone working staff are immediately exposed to a greater risk of injury, assault or accidents.

The RNIB wanted a cost-effective solution to help improve individuals’ personal safety regimes, particularly as some of the staff are visually and/or hearing impaired themselves.

As one of the most well-known and respected charities in the UK, the RNIB fully understands the importance of lone worker protection, both from the perspective of personal well-being as well as that of the charity’s own reputation.

Users of Guardian24’s smart phone application can leave details of their movements and whereabouts via their mobile phone. If a user fails to notify the system when they finish a task, Guardian24 will attempt to contact them. If they don’t answer and their safety cannot be verified, Guardian24 will then escalate the incident (thereby conforming to the RNIB’s personalised emergency procedures).

If a user feels at risk, they can also call for help via the ‘Panic Alarm’ function by pressing an assigned key on their mobile device. They’re able to do so even if the device should be locked or in standby mode. This will call Guardian24’s dedicated 24-hour Alarm Receiving Centre.

Using the GPS capability of the phone, the lone worker can also be easily located. All recordings are saved and may be used as evidence in court if required.

The application is easy to install on all major smart phone operating systems and is supplied with a wealth of options including GPS tracking and locating services.

No hardware is involved so the service is extremely cost-effective. There are often budget challenges, particularly for charities who aim to apportion the majority of income on their core objectives. With Guardian24’s smart phone application, there’s no upfront cost and only a minimal service subscription to pay.

That last point isn’t lost on Glenn Hurst of the RNIB Supplier Management Team. “There will always be budget challenges in getting something like this approved,” said Hurst, “so the more cost-effective the solution, the better it is for all concerned. However, it’s also about finding the right balance for lone worker provision based upon employee needs. Some of the staff at the RNIB using this service are visually and/or hearing impaired. This service meets their needs as well as providing an excellent, easy-to-use lone worker reporting and monitoring tool.”

Guardian24’s marketing director Will Murray added: “Every organisation in the UK is required to fulfil a legal and moral Duty of Care towards their employees. Safe working arrangements for lone workers are no different to organising the safety of other employees. The RNIB recognises this and has acted accordingly by adopting a lone worker protection solution.”

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Hikvision’s Easy IP Solution set to offer “more advanced features” for end users in SMBs

Hikvision is expanding its Easy IP Solution family of cameras and NVRs in a continued quest to make CCTV surveillance “easier, quicker and smarter”. The Easy IP range now includes more advanced features, such as 4 Megapixel ultra-high resolution, 120 dB WDR and H.264+ optimised Smart codec, etc, all of which willo assist SMBs.

The new Easy IP Solution makes installation easy and secure for all end users. The PoE-equipped NVRs mean that the need for a separate power supply to each camera is eliminated, while the inclusion of the 4 Megapixel panoramic fisheye camera allows the entire coverage of a store or office rather than having to deploy several fixed cameras.

The recessed-mount dome cameras also enable installers to simply use existing downlight installations. Cameras with motorised lenses and PTZ functionality eliminate the need for post-installation camera and lens direction positioning.

The Hikvision Easy IP Solution product range

The Hikvision Easy IP Solution product range

As well as PoE meaning that just a single Ethernet cable is required for each camera, the Easy IP Solution includes a complete range of Wi-Fi cameras and NVRs featuring auto-detection, auto-connection and easy access.

At the same time, the PoE NVRs automatically allocate an IP address to each camera when connected, in turn completely removing any potential delays with configuring IP address forwarding and saving time in larger installations.

Easy storage

Featuring on-board storage on many of the cameras, Hikvision’s Easy IP Solution also offers high compression efficiency codecs to reduce the burden placed on the transmission and storage elements of the system. This is particularly significant for HD IP systems where bandwidth and storage costs can be a major concern. A standard H.264 camera with Full HD 1080p resolution and one month of recording can result in about 1.2 Tb of space being consumed.

The Hikvision H.264+ optimised Smart codec technology helps to reduce storage consumption by up to two-thirds, with Full HD 1080p resolution for one month consuming just 462 Gb.

All Hikvision Easy IP Solution cameras support the EZVIZ Cloud – P2P service, which enables remote access from your smart phone. This means you can view the live video and recorded video files from your house, store, office or enterprise anytime and anywhere.

EZVIZ also includes intelligent alarm support so that any intrusion or emergency events can be precisely recognised and resolved.

The Easy IP Solution’s range of indoor and outdoor cameras is designed to meet a wide variety of needs and includes bullet, dome, panoramic, cube and PTZ styles. For instance, the 1 Megapixel and 2 Megapixel mini cameras with their on-board storage capability will be well suited to smaller business installations, while the 4 Megapixel ultra-HD units with H.264+ Smart codecs ensure high quality 1080p resolution images during the day and night.

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