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CEDIA advises on smart wiring

Due to today s ever growing reliance on digital and smart appliances, security professionals are facing greater pressure to install complex cabling infrastructures needed to support smart home technology. Simon Buddle, Education Director at CEDIA EMEA, highlights the importance of installing an efficient and secure residential cabling system. He explains how professionals can provide clients with the right cabling requirements for the modern home of today and tomorrow.

Wiring in the evolving smart home Technology is increasingly infiltrating the home. With virtually all household technologies part of the home network, a simple phone line and TV antenna is no longer adequate to support the technology that is now available to homeowners. As a result, many require comprehensive wiring infrastructures and data network systems that are suitable for the modern smart home. In order to prevent opportunists from doing it themselves , it s crucial for security professionals to offer a a service that benefits homeowners. A correctly wired infrastructure at the very first stage of building or renovating is fundamental to homeowners who want technology. A common phrase heard among the home technology industry is the most expensive cable you have to install is the one that did not get installed in the first place . The basis of a smart home is the infrastructure, the cables. Not all properties require technology at this stage. But it is crucial for the correct wiring to be in place so that it is ready for the future.

A wired infrastructure can set up the home for future applications, whilst still preserving the d cor of the home and adding value. The rise of smart wiring presents a great opportunity for security professionals. The home technology sector presents a lucrative opportunity for these professionals to expand their reach and create new business. By offering a more complete service for the home, including specialist services, such as fitting reliable cabling infrastructure, security professionals can guarantee their businesses will be more resilient. It could help them through tough times as they pick up more work from new and existing customers. CEDIA s smart wiring education To make sure security professionals are up-to-date with the latest skills and knowledge, CEDIA has best practice advice for wiring smart homes. CEDIA has a number of courses for those who want to extend their cabling knowledge. One of their most popular education programmes is its one day Smart Home Wiring course. Attendees learn how to plan and install a wireless infrastructure that can withstand and integrate a range of modern technological demands.

Based on the Smart Home Infrastructure Recommended Guidelines , it promises to leave attendees with a clear understanding of how a modern home should be cabled for new technologies, and future flexibility. CEDIA s the Smart Home Infrastructure Recommended Guidelines is perfect for security professionals looking to move into the home technology market or gain a wider understanding of the subject. The document aims to help security professionals understand the comprehensive cabling infrastructure required for the modern home. It sets out a plan for a far more integrated and modern approach to wiring homes. CEDIA at IFSEC CEDIA is hosting a number of training sessions at IFSEC International 2017. The 90 minute training sessions will take place in South Gallery Suite 8 at ExCeL on 20 th and 21 st of June: 20th June: Introduction To Smart Home Technology IP Networking for the Smarthome WiFi Tips & Tricks For The Modern Home Intro to Audio, Video & Home Entertainment 21st June: Introduction To Smart Home Technology Building A Business In The Smart Home Marketplace Panel Discussion Lighting Control For The Secure Home Wiring Infrastructure For The Modern Home For more information on what advice, courses and literature CEDIA can offer security professionals, please visit www.cedia.co.uk Be smart come to IFSEC International 2017 The Internet of Things (IoT) is becoming an ever important element of various technology solutions for the smart home. The ability to connect, communicate with, and remotely manage a vast number of networked, automated devices via the internet is now inescapable.

This June, the latest smart products are on hand to test and trial throughout the exhibition as well as a dedicated smart seminar theatre, and training sessions on the show floor.

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GAO WEST NILE VIRUS OUTBREAK.

Lessons for Public Health …

Transcription

1 GAO United States General Accounting Office Report to Congressional Requesters September 2000 WEST NILE VIRUS OUTBREAK Lessons for Public Health Preparedness GAO/HEHS

Video surveillance for todays seniors

The lifespan of the average man and woman has increased over the years, due to advances in medicine and improved nutritional standards. Seniors who would have been considered elderly only decades ago, are now still vibrant and living independently. Even senior citizens who live at home with the assistance of a nurse or in home care aid, can live life to the fullest.

Of course, this doesn t mean that family and friends don t worry about them. On the contrary, people in their 80s and 90s and those individuals lucky enough to live past the 100 mark may need guidance. Any lack of balance or simple fall can cause a hospital stay, with a broken hip likely to create further medical issues. Forgetfulness and hearing loss makes otherwise diligent seniors forget to take their medicine or hear the ring of a doorbell. Seniors and technology Teens and young adults have no problem living their lives in front of the camera. Their generation enjoys being videotaped whenever and wherever they may be. However, this is generally not the case for senior citizens. Many older people still fear technology and feel uncomfortable with video equipment in their homes, no matter how unobtrusive these cameras may be. Young adults try to explain to their parents how crucial a camera may be to their senior loved ones health, security and well-being.

It s always important to discuss the subject thoroughly, before making any purchases. Surveillance monitoring equipment is not only a definite investment, but at no time do you want a parent or grandparent to think that they are being spied on unnecessarily. Less invasive forms of video monitoring You never want to make anyone uncomfortable in their own home. This is especially true of those people who believe that someone will be watching them in various stages of undress or when using the bathroom. Luckily there are monitors which function as sensors, simply alerting a loved one that something is amiss in the household. Monitoring systems do use traditional video cameras, so no footage is obtained from the home. These wireless and diminutive sensors are placed where they can detect motion or a change in normal patterns of activity. When this occurs, a contact is immediately notified. You can choose how messages are sent confidentially via telephone, email, text message and mobile app.

Wireless motion sensors An excellent example of how these sensors are employed, concerns their usage in determining if someone has taken their daily medicine or meals. Sensors are small enough to attach to regular household items like pillboxes and television remotes. You can additionally attach sensors to the refrigerator or interior door, alerting a loved one that their senior is home and on schedule. Let s say that a senior has opened a front or back door at an unusual hour of the night. Their family member or guardian would be alerted at once. This information is particularly urgent when seniors are completely alone or live with a spouse yet suffer from dementia. Once alerted, a loved one can contact the police, a neighbor or rush over on their own if possible. Home surveillance videos Video technology is routinely used to monitor homes, schools, shopping centers and commercial buildings. More than one person has discovered that their pet was running amuck through their house or that an employee has been stealing from their place of business.

In severe situations, acts of child abuse and crimes committed in bright daylight have been uncovered. Today s video cameras are stylishly small and easily set up around the home. All that s required is an on-site wi-fi system so images can be sent directly through the Internet. The capability of your chosen video equipment will vary greatly, depending upon its cost and complexity. However, newer home based surveillance systems will operate with amazing accuracy. Real-time video monitoring saves lives Instead of spying on seniors, loved ones are now able to see and hear if an emergency is happening in real-time. Night vision cameras allow for surveillance during the night and early morning hours when illnesses often take lives. Sound detection features let loved ones hear if a senior is calling out for help or someone else is prowling the premises. More complicated video surveillance systems come with a variety of other options.

These include motion based sensors and audio components that give viewers a chance to speak directly to the subject under surveillance. You can additionally record videos and save them to the Cloud, so they can be reviewed more intensely later. Peace of mind and security Using simple mounts with adjustable angles, monitoring equipment literally blends in with any d cor. Seniors can go about their lives in their own home, with the knowledge that a medical emergency or act of crime will be reported as it plays out. Should a senior citizen not remember exactly what happened, the video feed can replay to catch the incident in its entirety. For those seniors who require a caregiver or housekeeper, video surveillance cameras provide an ongoing record of their employment. Should an act of abuse or theft take place, it is likely to be captured in full view of the cameras. This aids families and the authorities. Just as Nanny Cams have revolutionized child care, home video surveillance can transform how seniors live.

While some people might find the presence of a video camera intrusive, the eye of the camera is really their friend. Better yet, family members can now monitor these video feeds right from their mobile devices giving them a chance to advocate on behalf of their loved ones. Europe s only large-scale security event in 2017 Taking place in London, 20 22 June 2017, IFSEC International gives you exclusive hands-on access to over 10,000 security solutions, live product demonstrations, and networking with over 27,000 security professionals.

Furthermore, take advantage of discounts up to 30% available exclusively at the show.

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Kitemark standard would be a progressive step towards strengthening IoT security

Symantec internet Security threat Report The recent Internet Security Threats Report from Symantec highlights that last year cyber attackers have been fishing for gold in all areas and frequently finding success, as seen by the sheer regularity of breach reports in 2016. While malicious emails and ransomware continued to wreak havoc on businesses and consumers alike, the study again highlighted new threats coming into the spotlight thanks to the increase in usage of connected devices. In an era where data is becoming the new currency, all personal and professional data needs to be properly protected especially with GDPR regulations fast approaching.

As more businesses take advantage of the benefits the internet of things (IoT) can bring to their business, they also need to utilise technologies available to them such as machine learning to help analyse and help detect and improve weaknesses in a network and spot abnormal activity when it occurs. We can expect various forms of attacks to continue to increase. There is no excuse not to be prepared. As we continue to see the exponential growth of connected devices, we will continue to see security issues that we hadn t even considered before, such as the Mirai botnet of 2016. Lessons will clearly be learned such as avoiding hard coding IP addresses, use of default password, while many of the protocols designed for smart connected devices will have their own potential flaws and vulnerabilities which organisations will have to tackle. Online Trust Alliance (OTA) To help make securing internet-connected devices easier for businesses, the Online Trust Alliance (OTA) has produced a framework in IoT security, offering guidance on how to secure embedded devices. This introduction of a kitemark standard for IoT devices is a progressive step towards ensuring safe practice is followed and that security of such devices against these types of hacks is stopped at source. In short, we can expect various forms of attacks to continue to increase. With this knowledge there is no excuse not to be prepared.

Cybercriminals are entrepreneurial, well-sourced and motivated and Symantec s report once again demonstrates that the threat of attack is a growing problem. Organisations and consumers need to be wary of attacks, as the damage could be far greater than just financial and reputational. Organisations must now realise that they can no longer afford for cybersecurity not to be their number one priority. Ensure a solid security strategy at Borders & Infrastructure Expo Join other high-end security professionals at the launch of Borders & Infrastructure Expo, in conjunction with Europe s most renowned security event, IFSEC International, addressing your critical needs for large-scale security projects. By attending, you ll access leading security providers showcasing the latest advancements in both physical and cyber solutions.

Click here to register your place now to join us at London Excel on 20 22 June 2017.

Internet of things bubble will burst in 2017, predicts Wired Magazine

Internet Of Things Bubble Will Burst In 2017, Predicts Wired Magazine

IoT trends Wired magazine has prophesied the demise of the internet of things (IoT) in 2017. As predictions go it s pretty bold given sales of internet-connected devices already number 12 billion worldwide and are projected to grow to about 30 billion by 2020. On the face of it, the tech bible has really stuck its neck out on this one.

Except Wired hasn t actually forecast the demise of internet-connected devices per se ; rather, it s the IoT term itself it believes is on borrowed time, along with an assumption associated with it: that no object, however mundane, cannot be improved with a computer chip. The Internet of Things was a made-up term to begin with, says the article in question. And now this bit of marketing nonsense carries a sheen of ineptitude, danger, and other shit. The upshot: the term will die in 2017, kinda like Big Data before it. Visitors to CES 2017 in Las Vegas test out some VR headsets The success of a Twitter account called the Internet of Shit, which tweets disparagingly about the myriad IoT devices being launched to more than 100,000 followers, augurs ill for the IoT, says Wired. To test out just how widely the IoT concept was being applied to everyday things , I drew up a list of the most mundane objects I could think of and Googled them with the prefix smart . Of the seven I Googled, four had already been enhanced with a computer chip and Wi-Fi connection (in the IoT camp: toilet roll holder, duvet cover, cushion and mirror; still stuck in the analogue age are sofas, breadbins and shoehorns). Yeah baby shove my smartphone in a 20lb bottle of water with a speaker or whatever #CES2017 pic.twitter.com/4yjkvXPPR6 Internet of Shit (@internetofshit) January 7, 2017 The other problem and one exacerbated by the sheer volume and range of IoT products is the cyber threat. If the media has played its part in hyping up the IoT, then it will also play a key role in facilitating its decline thanks to the slew of stories about the security risks posed by connecting your home.

Long focusing their fire on corporations albeit it s consumer data that is usually stolen tech writers and security experts are now warning of a frightening new spectre: that criminals will turn their attention to smart homes that lack the enterprise-grade security enjoyed by Fortune 500 companies (which is still shown to be lacking in so many cases). Wired noted that in September, nearly 1.5 million IoT devices (mostly surveillance cameras) were hijacked and that the following month, the same piece of malware rendered large swaths of the internet inaccessible to many people. The IoT has also been damaged by bricked devices, irritating outages, bankrupt startups, an international emissions testing scandal, and a viral story about a Brit who spent 11 hours trying make tea with a needlessly high-tech kettle. Aware of this perception the IoT industry has been scrambling to remedy vulnerabilities such as the widespread use of default usernames and passwords that hackers can easily find by trawling Google. At CES 2017 Symantec Norton unveiled what it claims is the most secure router in the world and is certainly one of the most aesthetically interesting. A geodesic orb, it looks like it could be an object of portentous power in a sci-fi fantasy film. Symantec Norton s Core Router Securifi, meanwhile, launched a mobile app that highlights vulnerabilities like easy to guess passwords or open ports and shows users how to remedy them. The next-generation of Bitdefender BOX was launched in Las Vegas too. Bitdefender s IoT security hardware protects against malware, hackers, ransomware, phishing and other online threats with data anonymization, malware scanning, machine-learning algorithms and network intrusion prevention technology.

Clearly, the IoT has been on the well-worn path followed by so many tech crazes. First, there s a lot of hype, but also considerable teething troubles where products malfunction or work less effectively than promised. Developers don t yet know what customers want from the tech, so there s a lot of trial and error and dud technology (that people later mock with the benefit of hindsight). Eventually, issues around usability and compatibility and cyber security will be remedied to a large degree and a clearer picture will emerge of what the IoT or whatever it is called by that time is for and what kinds of things can really benefit from internet connectivity. As Wired writes: The Internet of Things or whatever you want to call it has the potential to save precious resources, spot and fight pollution, and help people lead healthier, safer lives. But adding internet remote control to every single product on the market won t necessarily help us get there. What we need are thoughtful, affordable, durable devices that actually, y know, make our lives better. A new name, and a renewed sense of purpose, could be just what the Internet of Things needs. Click here to read the original feature in Wired, which also makes another four tech predictions for 2017.

Download: The Video Surveillance Report 2016 This exclusive report covers the security needs of surveillance systems as shaped by the physical environment including: What do security professionals think about plug-and-play systems Challenges like low-light conditions or large spaces and the threats posed in various sectors Which cutting-edge features such as mobile access, PTZ smart controls or 4K resolution are most important to security professionals What are the most important factors driving upgrades and would end users consider an upgrade to HD analogue Download the full report here.

5 fire-safety innovations showcased at CES 2017

5 Fire-safety Innovations Showcased At CES 2017

A hearing aid that connects to smoke alarms via Wi-Fi (image above) and a smart oven that turns itself off to cut fire risk were among the innovations on show at the world s biggest consumer electronics event.

1. HomeKit-enabled smoke alarm can turn on lights as well as audio signal The HomeKit-compatible smart smoke alarm from Netatmo activates an 85-decibel chime when it detects smoke. Real-time smoke alert notifications are sent to paired smartphones, whether the homeowner is at home or not.

Unveiled at CES 2017 the alarm s most intriguing feature is the configuration of scenarios made possible by compatibility with HomeKit the software interface that links iPhones with smart-home appliances. Users could, for example, configure their phone to switch on all smart lights in the house as well as triggering an audio alarm. Otherwise, the alarm s features mirror those seen on competitor products from Nest, Halo and First Alert. An alert is sent when the battery is approaching the end of its lifetime but given this is supposedly a full 10 years there s a strong chance you ll have replaced the device with a more sophisticated model by then. The alarm performs regular battery and performance tests, generating self-check reports on the user s app. Netatmo s alarm is also sophisticated enough to distinguish between smoke from a fire and smoke from burnt toast or another false trigger. Using the Netatmo Security app users can silence the alarm with the Bluetooth LE hush feature and check its status on an integrated LED strip positioned on the front of the alarm. Another Netatmo product was credited with preventing tragedy following a house fire and it wasn t a smoke alarm.

2. Hearing aids that connect to IoT smoke alarms Oticon showcased a remarkable new hearing aid in Las Vegas.

Launched in June 2016 Opn (see image at top of page) is the world s first smart hearing aid that connects directly to internet of things (IoT) devices, including smart smoke alarms. The hearing aids, which could also link to things like smart doorbells or TVs, can receive signals direct from alarms and turn down competing background sounds so the alarm is unmistakable and unignorable. Oticon s Opn connects to the web via IFTTT, which in theory makes it compatible with any IoT device. Opn, which can be customised to the person s skin tone or tastes, is particularly invaluable in noisy environments, given that hearing loss often makes it difficult to separate individual sounds and their sources from a cacophony of noise. The smart hearing aids use machine learning to recognise voices through frequency ranges and patterns and turn the volume down on other background sounds. The specific sound profile can be acutely tailored to only address the areas of hearing loss they suffer from. Oticon Opn triumphed in the 2017 CES Innovations Awards in two categories: Tech for a Better World and Wearable Technologies. A Velox sound processor powers Oticon s proprietary BrainHearing technology. embedded content 3.

Oven that prevents fires and false alarms from GE Appliances GE Appliances collaborated with Nest Protect so that the latter s smart smoke alarms can be integrated with the former s ovens. The detector, which also detects carbon monoxide, sounds an alarm and sends notifications to the user s smartphone when the oven has been deactivated. Cooking should be an enjoyable experience, but we know that sometimes there are mishaps in the kitchen, said Paul Surowiec, vice president for cooking products at GE Appliances. Our integration with Nest Protect helps us ensure that our connected oven owners are safer when cooking, especially when the oven is left unattended. Nest Protect features a split-spectrum sensor that uses two wavelengths of light to distinguish between fast- and slow-burning fires. Residents can remotely silence an alarm using the app silence function, even when not at home. From their smartphone they can also conduct safety checkups on sensors, Wi-Fi connection, horn and speaker. Find out more about this innovation.

4. Airthings Wave detects deadly radon gas Airthings Wave alerts householders to the presence of a gas which is believed to be the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers.

Tens of thousands of deaths globally are attributed to radon, including 21,000 Americans more than six times the number of deaths attributed annually to house fires and carbon monoxide poisoning combined. Until now tests for radon usually involve charcoal canisters, which take a snapshot of radon levels and only provide results after samples have been sent for analysis in a lab. The constant, real-time monitoring offered by Airthings Wave represents a meaningful advance given that radon levels fluctuate depending on climate, ventilation levels and time of year, among other factors. The rise of the internet of things (IoT) has emboldened Airthings to believe that radon monitoring could and should become as affordable and commonplace as smoke detection. Find out more about this innovation.

5. Norton Cure IOT router OK, so we re cheating a bit here: it s not a fire safety innovation as such. But bear with us. Anything connected to the internet can conceivably be hacked and that includes smart smoke alarms. Therefore safeguarding your Wi-Fi network and attached devices against the nefarious intrusions of cybercriminals is wise.

Of course, you could draw the conclusion that the cyber risk which you can never 100% eliminate means that you ll stick to your analogue smoke alarm thank you very much. If you do want to go smart, then you may be interested in Symantec Norton s new product, which it claims is the most secure router in the world. If that s the most relevant insight about the product if the claim stands up to scrutiny then the most fascinating one to non-technophiles at any rate is surely its appearance. A geodesic orb, it looks like it could be an object of portentous power in a sci-fi fantasy film. One might presume that the shape is purely aesthetic. Not so, according to Symantec Norton. The antenna is apparently inspired by defense and weather radars for better wireless coverage. The Core will inspect every packet of data for known malware and will automatically quarantine any device running firmware known to be a security risk. It s powerful too, boasting a 1.7GHz dual-core chip processor and 802.11ac Wi-Fi broadcasting on both 5GHz and 2.4GHz bands, with a maximum throughput of 2,500Mbps.

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CES 2017: The top 5 trends in security tech

CES 2017: The Top 5 Trends In Security Tech

As CES 2017 closes its doors for another year, let s take a look at some of the trends apparent on the show floor this time around.

1. Is the IoT industry finally taking cyber vulnerabilities seriously? The sharks have smelled the blood in the water and they re now circling to use your IoT device for further attacks, James Lyne, global head of security research for Sophos, told CNBC.

Chances are right now if you re buying an Internet of Things device, you re more likely to be buying something insecure, than secure, continued Lyne, who has demonstrated on YouTube how to hack a security camera. Ominous words indeed. With the number of IoT devices projected to grow from 12 billion to about 30 billion by 2020, the vectors of cyber attack are multiplying faster than cyber security professionals (of whom there are all too few) can keep up with. Security is little more than an afterthought on too many devices, with criminals able to guess default usernames and passwords by trawling Google. If this year s CES was anything to go by, the industry may belatedly be waking up to the threat. The consequences of a hacked autonomous car are particularly terrifying. Enter Bosch, which has launched a mixture of keyless entry and digital key sharing. Perfectly Keyless, whereby the owner opens or locks the car doors with their smartphone, purports to removes needless complexity that could be exploited by hackers and coordinate transmission and receipt of data through a central gateway on its own servers. As for the smart home, Symantec Norton unveiled what it claims is the most secure router in the world.

If that s the most relevant insight about the product if the claim stands up to scrutiny then the most fascinating one to non-technophiles at any rate is surely its appearance. A geodesic orb, it looks like it could be an object of portentous power in a sci-fi fantasy film. Core will inspect every packet of data for known malware and will automatically quarantine any device running firmware known to be a security risk. Securifi, meanwhile, launched a mobile app that works with the new Almond 3 router that shows what IoT devices are on a home network and highlights vulnerabilities like easy to guess passwords or open ports. The app will take users through the steps to fix security weaknesses. The next-generation of Bitdefender BOX was unveiled. Bitdefender s IoT security hardware protects against malware, hackers, ransomware, phishing and other online threats with data anonymization, malware scanning, machine-learning algorithms and network intrusion prevention technology. Fortress Cyber Security launched Fortress UTM, a residential unified threat management (UTM) appliance. Securing both computers and internet of things (IoT) systems, it s the first solution of its type, providing intrusion detection and prevention, firewall and anti-virus for all Wi-Fi and IoT/Ethernet attached systems, seeks to combat the growing threat of data theft, ransomware, distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks and the commandeering of corporate IT resource to distribute stolen content or host and distribute sexually explicit material.

2. Developers will literally put a chip in anything When microwave ovens became popular in the 1980s many people got so excited they cooked literally anything and everything in them from bacon to whole chickens (no doubt many people still do) and were egged on by ostensibly authoritative cookbooks dedicated to the art of microwave cooking. The still fairly novel concept of connecting everyday objects to the internet has set loose a comparable mania for applying the IoT concept as widely as possible.

From homeware to clothing and personal accessories, no thing is too humdrum that someone hasn t already put a computer chip in it or eventually will. For every transformative invention there are countless downright daft ones it s very much about throwing the proverbial mud against the proverbial wall at this juncture. Twenty years from now we ll look back and marvel at a handful of technologies that had a profound impact on reducing drudgery and enhancing our leisure times. And then we ll consider the smart hairbrush (something the satirical account @theinternetofshit has already railed against). Or the smart suitcase cover. It will be fascinating to see which ones sink without a trace (later to re-emerge on what were they thinking? type TV programmes), which ones sell well and which ones have a meaningful impact on society. And it probably isn t as obvious which ones fall into which category as you might think.

3. Cameras are king just as in the commercial security world Walk around any major security trade show and CCTV cameras still dominate.

The emergence of video analytics and ever higher resolutions have sustained interest in cameras long after countries like the UK reached saturation point with network camera coverage. Now surveillance cameras have been repackaged for the consumer market they re eclipsing other security technologies in terms of media coverage and number of products launched there too. Trawl Google, Twitter and other platforms for CES 2017 related security tech and cameras and you ll see what I mean.

4. Camera-light combos If cameras are king then one type of camera in particular has been particularly apparent this year: the surveillance camera-cum-lamp or floodlight. Light bulb maker Bell & Wyson is unveil;ed a light bulb with a concealed camera embedded at CES 2017. The low energy (11W) LED bulb-cum-camera has a TF slot and two-way microphone and will stream footage to tablets and smartphones via Wi-Fi. Ring also launched an outdoor floodlight camera. A motion-activated security camera the Floodlight Cam features built-in 3K lumen LED floodlights, a 270-degree field-of-view, facial recognition, a 110-decibel siren alarm, two-way audio and infrared night vision. The camera, which is hardwired and can be installed without professional help, is controlled via Wi-Fi via an iPhone or Android-based smartphone. The camera also incorporates a siren, which the householder can turn on to deter suspicious persons. Users can also yell out would-be intruders through the Floodlight Cam s loudspeaker.

The camera is weatherproof and can cope with temperatures between -5 F (-20 C) and 120 F (48 C).

5. DIY install For installers home automation meant installing high spec systems for very affluent customers or technophiles who could stretch to the high cost. The falling cost of the technology means this is changing, but just as a new opportunity presents itself, another threat becomes apparent. Most kit can be installed by the user and doing so is only becoming easier. So why shell out for professional installers or pay monthly fees for round the clock monitoring? Thankfully, as far as installers are concerned, mostcustomers still prefer a professional service to one they set up and monitor by themselves, surveys have indicated. Among the reasons this is still the case is lower insurance rates.

To stay relevant installers should allow homeowners more freedom to customize systems with the devices and services they really want, else they lose more customers to the DIY market, according to Bryn Huntpalmer.

Download: The Video Surveillance Report 2016 This exclusive report covers the security needs of surveillance systems as shaped by the physical environment including: What do security professionals think about plug-and-play systems Challenges like low-light conditions or large spaces and the threats posed in various sectors Which cutting-edge features such as mobile access, PTZ smart controls or 4K resolution are most important to security professionals What are the most important factors driving upgrades and would end users consider an upgrade to HD analogue Download the full report here.

The 5 most innovative security products launched at CES 2017

The 5 Most Innovative Security Products Launched At CES 2017

And last year we flagged the iris-enabled ATM machine, the spherical smart-home camera and the solar-powered lock that draws energy from your porch light. As the internet of things continues to give rise to a smorgasbord of quirky, ingenious and downright daft digital takes on everyday things, CES is always a fascinating visit, even for non-technophiles. Here are five of the most interesting security innovations unveiled at this year s edition, once again taking place over four days in Las Vegas.

1. Kuri the robot nanny Not dissimilar to the robotic love interest in dystopian, but redemptive Pixar hit Wall-E, Kuri possesses qualities that you don t necessarily associate with security sentries. Basically, Kuri looks cute.

Admittedly, it doesn t have a lot going on in terms of facial features, but somehow the spherical head with cute round eyes arop an egg-shaped body is enough to ratchet up the cute factor. Developed by Mayfield Robotics Kuri is also equipped with a surveillance camera, facial recognition software and chirps and nods (it doesn t talk though) that further buttress its appeal to children. The robot appears to possess deep learning capabilities, as it can learn how to navigate around your home dodging objects with the help a laser sensor once it becomes acquainted with the layout. Other features: iOS and Android app Three hours of battery life A four-microphone array to hear voice commands 2. The light bulb with a hidden security camera Light bulb maker Bell & Wyson has launched a light bulb with a concealed camera embedded. The low energy (11W) LED bulb-cum-camera has a TF slot and two-way microphone and will stream footage to tablets and smartphones via Wi-Fi. The idea behind the innovation is that intruders, unaware of the light bulb s dual purpose, will neither seek to evade it gaze nor tear it from the wall/ceiling. And of course, like traditional security lights, it could deter breaking and entering as it gives the impression that someone is home. Click here to find out more.

3. Norton Cure IOT router Symantec Norton has unveiled what it claims is the most secure router in the world. If that s the most relevant insight about the product if the claim stands up to scrutiny then the most fascinating one to non-technophiles at any rate is surely its appearance.

A geodesic orb, it looks like it could be an object of portentous power in a sci-fi fantasy film. One might presume that the shape is purely aesthetic. Not so, according to Symantec Norton. The antenna is apparently inspired by defense and weather radars for better wireless coverage. With all manner of everyday household objects being fitted with computer chips and WiFi connectors, the internet of things is growing faster than cyber security professionals (of whom there are all too few) can keep up with. Designed to prevent hacking attempts at most home network s most vulnerable point, the router, the Core is an ambitious attempt to redress the balance. It will inspect every packet of data for known malware and will automatically quarantine any device running firmware known to be a security risk. It s powerful too, boasting a 1.7GHz dual-core chip processor and 802.11ac Wi-Fi broadcasting on both 5GHz and 2.4GHz bands, with a maximum throughput of 2,500Mbps.

4. Ring Motion Flood Light Ring, which is best known for its video doorbells, has launched an outdoor floodlight camera.

A motion-activated security camera the Floodlight Cam features built-in 3K lumen LED floodlights, a 270-degree field-of-view, facial recognition, a 110-decibel siren alarm, two-way audio and infrared night vision. The camera, which is hardwired and can be installed without professional help, is controlled via Wi-Fi via an iPhone or Android-based smartphone. The camera also incorporates a siren, which the householder can turn on to deter suspicious persons. Users can also yell out would-be intruders through the Floodlight Cam s loudspeaker. The camera is weatherproof and can cope with temperatures between -5 F (-20 C) and 120 F (48 C).

5. R econnaissance drones for the home Admittedly, this is actually only at the conceptual stage but was too intriguing to ignore. At CES 2017 Alarm.com and Qualcomm have revealed that they are working on camera-equipped drones that would fly through your home to investigate anomalous activity, such as an unusual noise or tripped motion sensor. They would then record footage with their on-board cameras and send the resulting video to your smartphone. Essentially, they would act as reconnaissance drones, a first in the booming drone market.

Click here to find out more.

Download: The Video Surveillance Report 2016 This exclusive report covers the security needs of surveillance systems as shaped by the physical environment including: What do security professionals think about plug-and-play systems Challenges like low-light conditions or large spaces and the threats posed in various sectors Which cutting-edge features such as mobile access, PTZ smart controls or 4K resolution are most important to security professionals What are the most important factors driving upgrades and would end users consider an upgrade to HD analogue Download the full report here.

Top trends in security tech to expect in 2017

Top Trends In Security Tech To Expect In 2017

The shops are super busy and, depending on which hemisphere you live in, it s either time to turn on the central heating or break out the shorts and shades. But it s also time to look ahead to 2017 and wonder what it might have in store for us. On a global level the world is going through turbulent times, with conflicts, political uncertainty, an ongoing refugee crisis and a somewhat fragile economic recovery from the most recent financial downturn.

At the same time, technological developments continue unabated, with high-speed networks, big data and deep learning moving beyond that initial phase of just being marketing buzzwords to enabling new and improved security offerings. Similarly, we expect the so-called internet of things to be much less of a novelty and become part of the fabric of our daily lives. However, that means manufacturers of internet-enabled devices will have to step up and take much more responsibility for the level of default security they ship with. All of these factors are likely to fuel demand for increased security, both physical and online. The security industry will continue its trend of offering more specific solutions to particular problems, rather than one-size fits all hardware/software Security as a service (SaaS) As many other technologies have done, we expect customers will stop looking at physical security as simply being a collection of hardware and software connected to a network. Instead, we think they will start to see their security as a service remote and professionally hosting and monitoring of video transmitted from the customer s premise. Whether by themselves, or more likely by sector-specific specialists who can not only take away the burden of managing the complex systems involved, but also reduce the costs of keeping those systems up to date and secure. This will not only free up internal resources which could be better focused elsewhere, but also improve the service level of the security system, enable better device management, and strengthen cyber security processes. On the topic of cyber security, we see an increased use of tools and practices that make network video a less vulnerable to attacks.

In general, wider use of pre- and post-installation tools (such as Axis Site Designer, for example) will help in ongoing monitoring and maintenance of systems. embedded content Integrated solutions The security industry will continue its trend of offering more specific solutions to particular problems, rather than one-size fits all hardware/software. In the end, customers aren t looking to buy a camera, or a video management system (VMS) what they really want is to reduce shoplifting, or make sure only certain people can access the cash office, or keep track of potential threats in an airport. Although the word solutions gets bandied around by technology companies a lot, for once this really is the most apt term. The convergence of hardware and software as well as pre-installation and post installation tools as mentioned above, into end-to-end solutions will be able to address specific security problems. They will consist of high-performance cameras, storage and access controls tightly integrated with video management and analytics tools. This approach will be easier for customers to purchase, install and implement, while offering a great return on their investment. We expect to see 2017 as the year when these new camera capabilities are combined with real-time analytics to address several security challenges, including facial recognition, forensic analysis and perimeter protection More analytics As part of this, we see that while high quality video footage is a core feature of modern security cameras, ultimately that information needs to be assessed and analyzed before a decision can be made to respond to its content. The recent advances in camera technologies, such as thermal imaging and enhanced low-light capabilities have been significant steps forward.

But in the end, they just generate more footage that needs to be watched/reviewed. So, much like how tools have been developed to sift through the huge pools of numerical/text data that is being captured every day, the security industry has been working hard on video analytics software that can work in real time to help professionals make informed decisions. We expect to see 2017 as the year when these new camera capabilities are combined with real-time analytics to address several security challenges, including facial recognition, forensic analysis and perimeter protection. embedded content Deep learning With all this data being gathered, we are seeing deep learning technologies coming to the fore. These use pattern recognition software to learn about different kinds of behaviours as seen through the multitude of security cameras installed around the world. Techniques involving deep learning and artificial intelligence will see broader utilization within the security industry. The benefits are that although all customers are different, the environments and locations they are based in tend to fall into the same general categories, with people exhibiting the same general behaviours. Once those behaviours have been learned the patterns that underlie them can be shared, enabling the system to flag up when something unexpected occurs. We see this as only the beginning and a very exciting space to keep an eye on.

2017 should be the year when security cameras work hand in glove with intelligent doors, intercoms and speakers, both locally and remotely Beyond video However, we know that physical security doesn t just involve surveillance of people/places/objects. It is also about physical access control, one and two-way communication and managing emergency situations and often managing this from a significant distance. So, to extend the concept of integration even further, 2017 should be the year when security cameras work hand in glove with intelligent doors, intercoms and speakers, both locally and remotely.

That means one simple system that can manage them all, in real time enabling customers to see, hear and talk to the people in/near their buildings. Cyber security As mentioned above, the internet of things has evolved from buzzword status to mainstream reality, but not without its challenges. While we still think the idea of millions of IP-enabled devices is an exciting prospect for the future, 2016 gave us a sobering reminder of the pitfalls of not properly securing all those internet-connected fridges, DVRs and unfortunately security cameras. Given that most of those devices are just plugged in and switched on by customers, it is down to manufacturers to take responsibility to ensure they are secure out of the box. Axis has always taken its customers security seriously, but we will hopefully see 2017 as the year when all manufacturers make this a priority. We will continue to strengthen our existing offerings and make it easier for our customers to keep their networks and devices secure. We think the internet of things should be about better security, and more efficient businesses, organisations and cities thanks to smart cameras, door stations and audio equipment with network connectivity.

Next year will add more smarts to those devices, while also enabling customers to focus on what they do best and allowing security specialists to improve the services they provide.

Download: The Video Surveillance Report 2016 This exclusive report covers the security needs of surveillance systems as shaped by the physical environment including: What do security professionals think about plug-and-play systems Challenges like low-light conditions or large spaces and the threats posed in various sectors Which cutting-edge features such as mobile access, PTZ smart controls or 4K resolution are most important to security professionals What are the most important factors driving upgrades and would end users consider an upgrade to HD analogue Download the full report here.

Mobotix profile: the decentralised security camera and software specialist

Mobotix Profile: The  Decentralised  Security Camera And Software Specialist

If you work in the video surveillance and security sector, chances are you ll be familiar with the name Mobotix. Now in its second decade, the German IP camera and software specialists has made a name for itself developing the first decentralised IP camera and supplying the Mount Everest webcam. Contrary to popular perception as a hardware provider, the company sees itself as a software specialist with in-house hardware development of digital, high-resolution and network-based video security.

It produces complete systems using a single source. The company claims to be ranked fifth worldwide for video security (second within Europe, Middle-East and Africa) and to be world leader for megapixel surveillance cameras. The world s first decentralised IP camera The publicly traded firm with headquarters in Langmeil, Germany, is known for its network camera technology. The company was founded in 1999 and in the same year released the industry s first decentralised IP camera. Its Linux system contained video, alarm, and recording management functions in one unit, thus doing away with the need for licensed video management software to handle the recording event. Since then, the decentralised concept has been further developed to make high-resolution video systems more cost-efficient as the cameras themselves execute video analysis and event detection internally, and manage their video ring buffer on a NAS or server by themselves. This is said to reduce the workload of the VMS workstation and network considerably. Network ‘uctuation or longer interruptions are compensated by an onboard video buffer SD card. As a result, Mobotix video systems are claimed to be reliable while needing fewer servers and workstations, and less network infrastructure than other brands.

The company says this reduces the overall system cost as well as power consumption. Encrypted recording by the camera itself is claimed to guarantee data security and privacy. Of similar ilk is the company s M12-type model that serves as the world s highest webcam on Mount Everest. Powered by solar cells and operating from 6am to 6pm local time, it s capable of operating at temperatures as low as ’30 C and broadcasts live high definition video worldwide via the Internet. Located at an altitude of 8,000 meters, it works in conjunction with the Everest weather station to provide scientists with details of climate change. Event-driven ring buffers and onboard encryption Thus optimised for remote applications and cloud-based technology, the company s systems seem to be capable of reducing video bandwidth by scaling size and frame rate. Image detail is preserved via onboard Virtual PTZ functionality which stores high-resolution video in-camera and delivers low-bandwidth live images and playback on demand. In addition, Mobotix cameras are said to be able to manage an event-driven video ring buffer via a network or the Internet. Live and recorded video can be secured via in-camera video encryption.

Since 2010, Mobotix has extended its product range to include intelligent home automation. From the first autonomous IP cameras released at the beginning of the millennium, systems have been equipped with CMOS sensors without any moving parts, said to improve backlight recording and long term reliability. Two-way audio with VoIP messaging and phone connectivity using the SIP standard is included alongside weatherproofing and IP66 protection. In 2015, a new range of competitive 6-megapixel indoor cameras for ‘exible ceiling and wall-mount installations was launched. A fish eye lens on the hemispherical device is said to be capable of covering an entire room without any blind spots while the company s Moonlight Sensor Technology is claimed to be light sensitive enough to produce high-quality videos without motion blur even in low-light conditions. embedded content Optics, motion analysis and object statistics Other industry staples the company specialises in are interchangeable lenses, motion analysis and object statistics. A change of optics can be performed by customers themselves for most models. Camera positions can be changed and the optics adjusted according to the new mounting location. As the choice of lens dramatically varies the scope of a camera, using a super-wide angle lens, for example, enables an entire room to be monitored from a corner.

In turn, telephoto systems can capture details at longer ranges such as a number plate or the facial characteristics of a person. High quality HD lenses are said to fit different Mobotix camera series, and are backwards compatible with older models, even though the area captured by the lens may slightly differ with the image sensor installed in the camera. Mobotix also offers motion analysis for its systems. Its MxActivity sensor is said to only record video or trigger alarms if an operationally important event occurs. Interference caused by moving trees, shadows, passing clouds or snowfall is ignored; automatic configuration means only the objects direction of movement needs to be selected. As for object statistics, the firm s cameras seem to be capable of a range of operations. By defining counting corridors in a shopping mall s camera feed, for example, shopper numbers can be determined over the course of a week. The camera records how often each counting corridor is crossed within a specified period. The reliability of the count depends on the similarity of the sizes and shapes of the persons or objects in the image, their relative distance, how effectively they can be visually distinguished from their background, and how close the counting corridor is to the centre of the image.

Download: The Video Surveillance Report 2016 This exclusive report covers the security needs of surveillance systems as shaped by the physical environment including: What do security professionals think about plug-and-play systems Challenges like low-light conditions or large spaces and the threats posed in various sectors Which cutting-edge features such as mobile access, PTZ smart controls or 4K resolution are most important to security professionals What are the most important factors driving upgrades and would end users consider an upgrade to HD analogue Download the full report here.