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Cowboy operators beware: Certification scheme breaks new ground

A register of competent installers and maintainers of electronic security and fire systems was launched recently. Endorsed by the BSIA, SSAIB, SIRA (a Dubai security regulator) and Tavcom Training, the CTSP Register includes individuals who have demonstrated that they have at least a year s experience and are suitably qualified in the disciplines including Video Surveillance Systems (CCTV), access control and fire, intrusion and hold-up alarm systems they claim to provide services in. The initiative, it is hoped, will help customers find trustworthy, suitably qualified operators and undermine cowboy traders.

But buyers of security installation or integration services can already filter prospects down to those certified by the SSAIB or NSI so what problem is the new certification solving? Where the CTSP Register breaks new ground is that individuals, not their employers, are certified. This makes it easier for security firms to recruit competent installers, in turn further reassuring their customers. Long bemoaned across the industry, the previous accreditation vacuum for individual installers has arguably allowed incompetent or unscrupulous traders to flourish. Installers and integrators are being urged to become Certified Technical Security Professionals (CTSP) to demonstrate their bona fides and enjoy greater exposure to potential customers. Registrants, whose presence on the register is subject to an ethics code and disciplinary process, can adorn their business cards, vehicle and marketing materials with the CTSP insignia. There is clear evidence many installation and maintenance jobs are often subcontracted, leading to unnecessary risks and potential claims. David Gill, MD, Linx International Group In a widely shared article published by IFSEC Global last November, Michael Lines, a senior consultant for security integrations, said that increasingly, suppliers who provide certification on their products also certify individuals. They often accept the transfer of individuals from one installer company to another.

Those of us who are reputable companies accept this even if it does mean the possibility of investing in training an individual only for them to move on after the event. Although, in real terms, this offers a stronger incentive to both parties to ensure satisfaction in the workplace and, hence, long-term staff retention. Equal footing Fast forward a year and Lines would surely back the principles underpinning the new register. If individual, independent installers had to be both accredited and certified, it would help the industry s overall professional standing, he wrote. It would help accredited businesses compete on an equal footing. It could also tie in with insurance, much as CORGI has achieved in the gas equipment installation business. David Gill, managing director of the Linx International Group, which owns CTSP backer Tavcom Training, has reflected on the problems that gave rise to the scheme: There was a lot of unrest about the lack of standards, he told Security Buyer in a recent interview. You can have a gold standard manufacturer, and a gold standard security system but there is no assurance for the end user that the installer of that system is qualified. There is clear evidence many installation and maintenance jobs are often subcontracted, leading to unnecessary risks and potential claims.

He hopes that, ultimately, the CTSP will reach critical mass and become the de facto gold standard for installer competence. I hope in time, that with strong industry backing, procurement managers seeking tenders for security systems will automatically specify that installation and maintenance work must be conducted by a registered CTSP technician. The CTSP Register is modelled on the framework used by the Register of Chartered Security Professionals the equivalent register for heads of security and other end users . I have personally experienced as a chartered security professional heightened respect from industry colleagues, members of other chartered professionals, clients and even the courts, Gill told Security Buyer. Gill also mentioned plans for networking opportunities, workshops, webinars, and possibly career advice related to the CTSP. Think about it: you wouldn t think of using a gas fitter who wasn t on the Gas Safe Register. Paul Tennant, group sales director, Tavcom Training Speaking to Professional Installer magazine, Tavcom group sales director Paul Tennant contrasts the existing status quo with the situation in the gas fitting trade. Think about it: you wouldn t think of using a gas fitter that wasn t on the Gas Safe Register (formerly CORGI). Security systems which fail due to incorrect installation, or substandard maintenance can result in major consequences for those responsible (for companies and directors), extending to criminal charges, litigation, untold reputational damage.

He also implies that the rapid evolution of technology is leaving many installers behind. Maintaining CTSP accreditation year after year would reassure customers that they are keeping pace with change, he suggests. These security systems (including fire detection) have advanced beyond all recognition in the last decade .. In response to this huge change in the market and in the absence of any meaningful regulation or code of conduct governing installers and maintenance technicians, a professional register has never been more necessary. Criteria Installers and integrators must demonstrate a minimum of 12 months practical experience and a minimum level 3 qualification such as a BTEC/City & Guilds or equivalent in one or more technical disciplines in order to gain certification. Two character references and no criminal convictions for dishonesty, assault or sexual crimes are also prerequisites. Registrants are required to maintain CPD (continual professional development) too. The CTSP Register, which charges a 50 annual fee to registrants, is now available online. I think this is a fantastic idea for the industry and for the individuals, said Lee Dowling, at installation firm West London Security.

Being able to show your professional skill set to employers and customers themselves will give them much greater confidence in you. Having been in the industry for nearly 10 years I have certainly come across some dreadful levels of workmanship which certainly doesn t match the standards required. Becoming a CTSP will certainly start filtering out the rough from the smooth and start bringing the level of installation work up to where standards should be. Said David Wilkinson, BSIA s director of technical services: We are very pleased to see this innovative register that recognises many of our security systems members. In such a challenging technical environment, it is more important than ever to demonstrate the professionalism of the personnel that represent our market sector. Free Download: The key to mitigating cybersecurity risks Exploiting IoT technology without creating cybersecurity vulnerabilities is one of the defining challenges in today s security landscape. This report will help you to see why third parties should adhere to secure by design principles and why the necessary convergence of IT and security departments demands a holistic approach .

Download now Related Topics Oncam s 360-degree Evolution becomes first surveillance camera to earn NSF food sanitation certification Register of certified fire and security installers launched to combat rogue trader problem Watch: The LPCB Attack Testing Zone at IFSEC 2017

Watch: Getting CCTV images ready for the criminal courts

IFSEC 2017 preview Mamta Nokes and Richard Beckley of the central forensic image team, Metropolitan Police Forensic Services Department, are presenting at IFSEC 2017 on the subject: From CCTV set-up to the criminal courts . In the videos below the pair preview their presentations, which will take place in the TDSi-sponsored Tavcom Theatre on three separate days see the times below. View more videos previewing the 2017 presentations at IFSEC 2017 s Tavcom Theatre.

You can check out the schedule for the Tavcom Theatre here. IFSEC International takes place between 20-22 June 2017 at London ExCeL . Get your free badge now. From CCTV set-up to the criminal courts : Mamta Nokes, central forensic image team, Metropolitan Police Forensic Services Department 20 June, 16:10-16:40 embedded content From CCTV set-up to the criminal courts : Richard Beckley, central forensic image team, Metropolitan Police Forensic Services Department 21 June, 13:10-13:40 embedded content The Tavcom Theatre provides practical advice for professionals working in the security industry both end users and installers on video surveillance, video analytics, CCTV networks, cybersecurity, systems integration, drones and more. Tavcom Training offers technical and non-technical training in a wide range of fields like security management, control room operations, system planning and project management, structured cabling, disaster recovery, counter eavesdropping, PAT testing and covert CCTV. They provide award-winning BTEC-certificated courses to installers, operators, managers and designers of CCTV, network IP, intruder alarm, access control, fire alarm systems and more. The Tavcom Theatre is this year sponsored by integrated access control innovators TDSi. A prime mover in the industry-wide shift to open platforms and software-driven evolution, TDSi is a widely respected provider of readers, controllers, cards, fobs and surveillance solutions. Visit 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.

Covering every aspect of security, from access control and video surveillance to smart buildings, cyber, border control and so much more.

Time is running out, register now to avoid missing out

Watch: How to optimise your network for CCTV and prove it works

Tavcom Theatre at IFSEC 2017 Peter Mason, lead IP tutor at Tavcom Training, is presenting at IFSEC 2017 on the subject: How to optimise your network for CCTV and prove it works. In the video below he previews this presentation, which will take place in the TDSi-sponsored Tavcom Theatre on three separate days see hte times below. View more videos previewing the 2017 presentations at IFSEC 2017 s Tavcom Theatre.

You can check out the schedule for the Tavcom Theatre here. IFSEC International takes place between 20-22 June 2017 at London ExCeL . Get your free badge now. Presentation details: How to optimise your network for CCTV and prove it works / Peter Mason / Tavcom Theatre / 20 June, 11:50-12:20; 21 June, 14:40-15:10; 22 June, 11:50-12:20 embedded content The Tavcom Theatre provides practical advice for professionals working in the security industry both end users and installers on video surveillance, video analytics, CCTV networks, cybersecurity, systems integration, drones and more. Tavcom Training offers technical and non-technical training in a wide range of fields like security management, control room operations, system planning and project management, structured cabling, disaster recovery, counter eavesdropping, PAT testing and covert CCTV. They provide award-winning BTEC-certificated courses to installers, operators, managers and designers of CCTV, network IP, intruder alarm, access control, fire alarm systems and more. The Tavcom Theatre is this year sponsored by integrated access control innovators TDSi. A prime mover in the industry-wide shift to open platforms and software-driven evolution, TDSi is a widely respected provider of readers, controllers, cards, fobs and surveillance solutions. Visit 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.

Covering every aspect of security, from access control and video surveillance to smart buildings, cyber, border control and so much more.

Time is running out, register now to avoid missing out

A lifetime of positive influence in the security industry: Mike Tennent, Tavcom Training

Tribute The security industry was saddened to hear in early May of the passing of one of its finest, most influential and nicest people: Mike Tennent, the founder of Tavcom Training. We have just revealed our Top 50 influencers in security & fire 2017 and we thought it a fitting and well deserved tribute to recognise Mike with a special lifetime of influence accolade. Our criteria for influence encompasses not just an individual s impact on the organisation he or she runs or works for but on the wider industry too.

Mike undoubtedly ticked both boxes. Founding Tavcom Training in 1994 Mike Tennent built his business to become the clear leader in security systems training in the UK and one with an increasingly global footprint. With the help of local partners Tavcom courses are now available to students in Dubai, Ghana, Singapore, Kuwait, Oman, South Africa and the US. But Mike never expanded for expansion s sake. Growth was never pursued at the expense of quality, as this tribute from Jon Laws , a lecturer at Tavcom, attests. Insisting on the highest standards Mike played a pivotal role in the professionalisation of an industry where many aspects of regulation, licensing and training were once minimal or non-existent. Tavcom offers technical and non-technical training in a wide range of fields like security management, control room operations, system planning and project management, structured cabling, disaster recovery, counter eavesdropping, PAT testing and covert CCTV. They provide award-winning BTEC-certificated courses to installers, operators, managers and designers of CCTV, network IP, intruder alarm, access control, fire alarm and more. Recognised, respected and well liked across the industry, Mike will be hugely missed.

IFSEC Global extends its condolences to Mike s family and friends we hope this tribute does him justice. Read a tribute to Mike Tennent by Jon Laws, Tavcom lecturer and MD of the Lyndhurst Consultancy on the Asscoation of Security Consultant s website. Visit Europe s leading security event in June 2017 Visit IFSEC International for exclusive access to every security product on the market, live product demonstrations and networking with thousands of security professionals. From access control and video surveillance to smart buildings, cyber, border control and so much more. It is the perfect way to keep up to date, protect your business and enhance your career in the security industry.

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