The Cloud Enables Integrators to Easily Add Security Solutions

Physical security starts with protection at the perimeter and can include a range of detection, including cloud, depending on users’ needs.

The Cloud Enables Integrators to Easily Add Security Solutions

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“The first line of defense.”

It’s a phrase that still resonates throughout the systems integration community when it comes to physical security. It starts with protection at the perimeter and can include a wide range of detection, depending on the needs of the user.

Stopping intruders or bad actors from entering a protected environment or facility to keep it safe and uncompromised from outsiders is the name of the game.

Locks and Electronic Controls

It’s well-known in the physical security industry that locks are one of the products that are the first line of defense. However, they are often a basic security feature that many premises may be missing. In fact, a recent NBC news article pointed out that the school classroom in Uvalde, Texas, lacked that basic security feature and the classroom doors could not be locked from the inside.

Thousands of schools across the U.S. lack doors that can be locked from the inside, the report further cited. Some one in four public schools lack this capability, creating a definite school safety vulnerability.

For educational campuses and schools, it can be difficult to find funding and budget to upgrade locks or install electronic access control or intercoms to restrict entry. That’s where the cloud comes in: it’s not an ‘all or nothing’ approach. The cloud allows systems integrators to add detection integrations at the end-user premises at their own pace quickly and easily.

Video and Analytics Assist Responders

For systems integrators, deploying video surveillance viewed via the cloud opens the door to even more opportunities for detection and situational awareness. Providing police and first responders access to camera feeds and individual cameras is easy with the cloud.

Systems integrators can also program access so first responders can assess a situation by visually observing the premises during an emergency, targeting response.

Video can be viewed by 911 headquarters, in patrol cars and on officer’s smartphone. They can have access to multiple locations and various doors with locking and unlocking capabilities enabled through the cloud to segment the building for safety.

The cloud is a flexible way to add and change users and permissions quickly as threat levels change. Systems integrators can also add video analytics like crowd detection or object detection – building upon their specifications in the future.

How the Cloud Creates Layers of Detection

A cloud-hosted security management platform is the perfect way to add layers of protection. Electronic locks, integrated and controlled centrally, can provide lockdown capabilities and can also be coupled with mass notification and even higher levels of security.

With visitor management solutions, systems integrators can give users even more control, allowing them to direct visitors to the proper location within the facility, or deny their access altogether, if they are prohibited or on a “watch list.”

Sensors and detectors also continue to play a critical role in safety and security and can be leveraged through the cloud. According to the Security Industry Association’s (SIA) latest 2023 Security Megatrends, the proliferation of sensors continues to surge with the loT.

Sensors can measure air quality to detect vaping, THC, smoke, benzene, formaldehyde and particulates. Chemical sensors can alert of dangerous airborne substances, like ammonia, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and nitrogen. Environmental sensors include temperature, humidity, tamper and pressure.

Motion detectors can be used for intrusion, occupancy controls and lighting. Audio sensors can detect abnormal noise levels or acoustic changes, as in the example of gunshot detection, or paired with integrated cameras to detect keywords that may indicate elevated danger levels at the premises.

New Applications

The cloud can bring additional data and intelligence to campus users, and unifies the information it provides. For example, systems integrators via the cloud can create a framework for a one-time/periodic self-approval process – ensuring that the someone at the facility is safe to be at the site regarding health and/or hazard concerns.

Through established required checkpoints, it can be determined if the person is approved to be at the site location or if they might need to complete additional requirements before entering. The user’s mobile badge is dynamically updated based upon their safe passage approval status.

Via the cloud, systems integrators can also offer additional facility accountability and controls, like asset management. Asset management tracks keys, equipment, tools, laptops, electronics and goods to specific locations and users so expensive components don’t go missing.

An asset that is not returned by the specified date generates a notification to the assigned user via email when overdue. Users can manage equipment in the field and quickly track the asset across their location and document any unreturned assets.

The more services you can offer your customer, the better the experience and outcome they will have with your company, and this will help provide a customer for life.

Mike Simon is the managing partner of Connected Technologies LLC.

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