Rishi Lodhia at Eagle Eye Networks describes how organisations can use cloud video surveillance to improve processes and performance as well as security
Organisations across the economy are increasingly investing in cloud-based video security, with access to data from any location having a positive impact on both security as well as business intelligence.
From easy set up and management, and scalable hosted virtual secure image storage and backup, to multi-site integration, today’s advanced cloud-based video surveillance systems deliver impressive economies of scale.
As a result, intelligent monitoring of both facilities and people is now a viable option for organisations looking to improve processes and performance, as well as security.
Organisations can reduce operational risks and costs by leveraging new sources of business intelligence that enable facility managers to improve the efficiency of how their buildings and spaces are utilised.
Improving efficiency with video-based operation analytics
The use cases for video-based operation analytics are growing all the time. For example, artificial intelligence-based monitoring of the environment in question, for example an office, makes it easier to automate lighting levels based on human proximity detection. Depending on whether people are present or not, lighting can be regulated to reduce wasteful energy consumption and lower the overall operating cost of the property.
Video analytics also allows users to analyse the occupancy levels in buildings or specific spaces. Data is collated and analysed to help facility managers understand where and when resources such as heating or air conditioning is needed to support optimal working conditions.
And to help with post-COVID return-to-work strategies, many organisations are currently applying intelligent analytics and advanced image processing capabilities.
In particular, occupancy monitoring, face mask detection and monitoring adherence to social distancing rules helps to ensure locations are COVID-secure and organised to keep people safe.
Proactive and intelligent security monitoring
In contrast with legacy surveillance technologies, cloud-based video surveillance delivers access to video anytime, from anywhere and on demand. Users can opt to receive real-time alerts when specific conditions are met, such as movement or an event – for example, a lack of face mask – being detected.
Utilising artificial intelligence (AI)-based alerting, it’s even possible to receive alerts; for example when a person enters a predefined or restricted area boundary without authorisation, or does so outside of business hours, the technology will automatically alert those responsible for security. Operators can draw boundary lines or mark out restricted areas for every room in the building and grounds on their computer screens to fine tune their security parameters.
This also extends to reducing the risks and inconvenience associated with false alarms, which have been long associated with the likes of moving branches, rain or fog. Even animals or birds can be mistaken for an intruder. New AI analytics are more effective at distinguishing real security threats, thereby reducing false alarms and optimising responses in the event of a genuine incident.
Incident reporting is also more versatile, with key holders, external security providers, and even the police added to bespoke alert distribution lists. These people can also be given fast and temporary access to video feeds so they can check on the security of a site and respond faster to emerging incidents.
Focusing on data security
As organisations generate and retain more data, they need to ensure they remain compliant with local data protection regulations, and cloud-based services can provide a strong framework for sticking to stringent rules.
Data protection is also key for any video sequences or metadata that may be required in legal proceedings or as evidence, and cloud-based surveillance data can be retained by users for as long as required before being deleted.
In certain circumstances, indexing and archiving material may need to be kept longer to support incident investigations and users can set parameters for meeting any obligations.
Today’s cloud-based video surveillance platforms also offer useful options for protecting on-site hardware such as cameras or appliances. If an unauthorised individual attempts to block, cover, move or switch off cameras, an alert is immediately sent to the control centre where security staff can take appropriate action.
Looking to the future, as surveillance software and camera quality continue to improve, connected digital IP video cameras will be able to transmit high resolution images to satisfy forensic-level detail.
What’s more, behavioural recognition technologies will soon provide the functionality to alert security teams to potential criminal or risky behaviours before individuals act.
Organisations that embrace the versatility and power of cloud-based surveillance will be ideally placed not just to optimise their existing use of these key technologies, but to capitalise on a wider range of business-focused opportunities.
Rishi Lodhia is Managing Director EMEA at Eagle Eye Networks
Main image courtesy of iStockPhoto.com