Sensors Mag

Large Scale Security Approach Has Larger Implications

November 28, 2006 By: Barbara G. Goode, Sensors

E-mail Barbara Goode

Securing large facilities—including public spaces—from so many threats seems a daunting task. Besides new technology, new business agreements are pushing forward developments to aid the effort. A couple of recent announcements illustrate this point—and have implications for more modest security challenges.

Two examples

This summer, Vidient Systems, developer of intelligent video surveillance and analysis software, is partnering with Intergraph Corp., provider of spatial information management software, to integrate Vidient SmartCatch with Intergraph's integrated command-and-control system. The partners plan to enable public security personnel with a single, simplified visual security picture of their entire facility, including perimeters and access points. The integrated solution provides incident command, spatial awareness, advanced behavior recognition, and incident management. This new capability promises real-time detection of security breaches, accelerated response times to incidents, and streamlined coordination and management among the full range of safety and security agencies involved.

Another deal announced this fall promises similar effect: Siemens Building Technologies acquired VistaScape Security Systems, developer of automated video analytic technology designed to protect critical structures (e.g., airports) from an array of threats. The deal to substantially expand VistaScape's potential. "VistaScape provides a platform to deliver integrated surveillance applications that enhance the value and effectiveness of the entire security infrastructure. This is a core enabling technology for security integrators globally," says Jens Michael Wegmann of Siemens.

Full-situation awareness

I like Intergraph's promise of "full-situation awareness." The company says it provides the ability to see all security-related data "in a single-operating picture that is easily shared in real-time. This "dashboard" approach to aggregating critical data from sensors and other sources echoes a trend that contributing writer Tom Kevan has noted in his Extreme Data column. The trend will grow as more and more sensors are deployed—and after critical infrastructure security is addressed, the technology will become commonplace for more common applications.

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