In 2017 we foresaw the emergence of video surveillance as a service. We also predicted an increase in intelligence in cameras, greater adoption of analytics, and more content aggregation. We saw biometrics taking increasing importance as a measure to prevent massive data breaches.

We took on more projects that were larger in scope and size. More implementations involved higher-resolution cameras and longer retention times leading to greater adoption of multi-tier storage.

Looking ahead to 2018

Surveillance-as-a-service takes off: In 2017 customers “dipped their toes in the water” with surveillance-as-a-service, and in 2018 it should gain acceptance with a wider audience. Increase in analytics: In 2017 neural networks, machine-learning, real-time analytics, and artificial intelligence all got significant airplay, and are turning into real offerings for 2018.Retention times aren’t shrinking, and tape is increasingly viewed as a vital element in surveillance storage architectures

More data will be created and retained longer: Retention times aren’t shrinking, and tape is increasingly viewed as a vital element in surveillance storage architectures. With more data being produced that is vulnerable to cyber-attack, people are also recognising the advantage of the air-gapped protection against ransomware that is inherent with tape.

LTO-8 tape technology lowers the barrier to multi-tiered storage: LTO-8 doubles tape cartridge capacity from the previous generation, enabling customers to store up to 30TB per cartridge for more cost-effective, long-term data retention. We will leverage these enhancements to deliver multi-tier solutions for persistent data growth and protection challenges in video surveillance, to offer cost-effective tiering for as little as half-a-petabyte of data.

What multi-tier storage offers

The multi-tier storage architecture as an enabling technology for video surveillance is clearly seeing traction going into the new year. There are market challenges – both political and technical – but the trend is one of progress. The market is in a state of flux, and additional stakeholders want to use surveillance data, so educating the market on how to use these architectures to resolve these problems is increasingly important.

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Wayne Arvidson Vice President - Video Surveillance Solutions, Quantum Corporation

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How SecuriThings boosts cybersecurity across multiple IoT devices
How SecuriThings boosts cybersecurity across multiple IoT devices

As Internet of Things (IoT) devices go, networked video cameras are particularly significant. Connected to the internet and using on-board processing, cameras are subject to infection by malware and can be targeted by Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. Hacking of cameras also threatens privacy by allowing unauthorised access to video footage. The performance of hacked cameras can be degraded, and they may become unable to communicate properly when needed. Ensuring cybersecurity is a challenge, and the fragmented structure of the video surveillance market contributes to that challenge. A variety of companies are involved in manufacturing, integrating, installing and operating video systems, and cybersecurity threats can enter the picture at any stage. “It’s not always clear who is responsible,” says Yotam Gutman, vice president of marketing for SecuriThings, a cybersecurity company. “However, the only entities who can ensure cybersecurity are the security integrator and the service provider. They will bear the financial pain and are willing to pay for cybersecurity. An extra $1 or $2 per camera per month is not expensive.” SecuriThings’ “lightweight software agent” runs in the background of video cameras, sending information to an analytics system in the cloud IoT device security management At the recent IFSEC trade show in London, SecuriThings unveiled its IoT Device Security Management (IDSM) approach to enable integrators to ensure cybersecurity. Founded in 2015, the company has around 20 employees in Tel Aviv, Israel, and operates a sales office in New York City. SecuriThings’ “lightweight software agent” runs in the background of video cameras, collecting metadata on camera processes and connections and sending information back to an analytics system in the cloud. Drag-and-drop deployment enables a camera to begin generating data within seconds and requiring only two mouse clicks. The cloud system analyses data, pinpoints abnormalities, identifies new users, detects multiple entry attempts and tracks other camera processes to identify any cyberattacks. It monitors all devices, gateways, users and APIs to detect threats in real-time and mitigate the threats based on a pre-determined security policy. Machine learning tools also analyse more subtle activities that can indicate insider abuse. For example, a user support center can identify if cameras are being accessed improperly by employees, thus preventing insider abuse. Certified vendor agnostic software SecuriThings is working with camera manufacturers and video management system (VMS) manufacturers to certify operation of its software agents with various camera models and systems. Working through integrators, such as Johnson Controls, is the fastest route to market, SecuriThings has determined. The system can be added after the fact to existing installations for immediate monitoring and remediation, or it can easily be incorporated into new systems as they are launched. “We have a strong sales team in the United States focusing on bringing the technology to more local and national integrators,” says Gutman. Certification ensures SecuriThings’ software agent can be installed in most modern camera models without negatively impacting operation; the software is vendor agnostic. Another eventual route to market is to work with camera manufacturers to install the SecuriThings software agent in cameras at the factory. In this scenario, the system can easily be “clicked on” when cameras are installed. The SecuriThings cloud system generates a dashboard that tracks system activities to identify any cybersecurity threats IoT Security Operations Center SecuriThings operation is transparent to the VMS, and the company works with VMS manufacturers to ensure the code operates seamlessly with their systems. Cloud analytics generate a dashboard that tracks system activities, and/or a managed service monitors the system and notifies customers if there is a problem. “We monitor it from our IoT Security Operations Center, a fully managed service that ensures the real-time detection and mitigation of IoT cyber-threats,” says Gutman. “We found that end-customers don’t have the manpower to monitor the system, so our experts can guide them.”Access control and cloud-based access control will be the next systems under cyberattack, and they are almost as vulnerable" A benefit for camera manufacturers is the ability of a system like SecuriThings to “level the playing field” on issues of cybersecurity, says Gutman. The approach provides a higher level of cybersecurity confidence for integrators and users, including those using cameras that have previously had cybersecurity problems such as “back door” access. SecuriThings has certified its software for use with Hikvision cameras and is in the process of certifying with Dahua, says Gutman. “Western manufacturers say their products are more secure, but we can help all camera manufacturers prove that they are just as secure,” says Gutman. “Integrators and users can log into a device and see all the activity.” Securing connected devices from cyber threats Beyond video, SecuriThings’ products target the full range of connected devices in the Internet of Things (IoT). The SecuriThings security solution enables real-time visibility and control of IoT devices deployed in massive numbers in smart cities, physical security, building automation, home entertainment and more. Video surveillance is an early focus because of market need, an opportunity to gain traction, and the critical nature of security applications. But the challenges are much broader than video surveillance. “We are seeing similar risks to other devices,” says Gutman. “Access control and cloud-based access control will be the next systems under cyberattack, and they are almost as vulnerable. If you can disable the access control system, you can cause a lot of problems.” Other connected devices that could be at risk include building automation and heating and cooling (HVAC) systems.

Social media data provides security professionals with real-time situational awareness
Social media data provides security professionals with real-time situational awareness

Twitter has around 350 million active users a month, all eagerly posting 280-character “tweets” about the world around them. It’s a vast amount of data from all over the globe. Security professionals have begun to appreciate the value of mining all that data for insights to help them protect people, assets and operations. One company leveraging the Twitterverse to provide real-time situational awareness to corporate security end users is Dataminr.Dataminr assembles this information flow into a useful timeline that summarises the ongoing sequence of events Algorithms for actionable security signals The New York-based technology company has developed algorithms that comb through the full Twitter dataset to provide actionable signals to security professionals around the world about security-related events as they unfold. For corporate security, early information about an unfolding event enables them to take action faster in order to secure their people, locations and business operations. “OMG! Just heard a loud bang on the quad,” a tweet might declare. Combined with location information gleaned from a mobile phone, such a tweet could be the first indicator of an unfolding security incident. As an event unfolds, hundreds of such tweets are likely to be posted from the surrounding areas, collectively offering a running narrative of developing events. Dataminr assembles this information flow into a useful timeline that summarises the ongoing sequence of events. Many times, tweets are the first information available from an incident even before the arrival of first responders.Dataminr’s information is provided in a variety of platforms, from a web-based dashboard to a mobile app or notification via email “Early notification allows security professionals to be more proactive,” says Dillon Twombly, SVP, Corporate Sales at Dataminr. “We have a broad range of users across Fortune 1000 companies, and also including country security managers, security operations centers, and executive protection. "In retail, we provide information for security operations or loss prevention. Events sometimes have a potential to spin out of control, and we allow security professionals to react faster and get ahead of an event proactively.” Various security platforms Dataminr’s information is provided in a variety of platforms, from a web-based dashboard to a mobile app or notification via email. The system can be integrated with a company’s workflow, and the software interfaces with various security platforms, such as physical security information management (PSIM) systems. Another corporate use for Dataminr is in public relations, where social media could be a source of misinformation or rumors about an issue or event Dataminr addresses all regulatory and legal concerns, and it is GDPR-compliant. However, privacy is generally not a big concern because Twitter data is posted publicly, and Dataminr gleans information related to a specific event, not a specific Twitter user’s individual data. “Over the past couple of years, we have grown the security vertical,” says Twombly. “The market is receptive to the value of social media as a tool for users tasked with responding in a comprehensive way to a range of issues.”The company’s services are useful across the full range of vertical markets in the security industry Public safety and security In addition to security and public safety applications, Dataminr also provides services to financial companies and even media outlets. In fact, the 9-year-old company started in finance, where stock or currency traders were able to leverage breaking news notifications to make decisions faster. In the media vertical, Dataminr provides information to 500 newsrooms globally. Public safety and security uses have evolved, and Twombly currently spearheads the company’s work in corporate security, calling on his experience in the security world. Another corporate use for Dataminr is in public relations, where social media could be a source of misinformation or rumors about an issue or event.Customers can customise the kind of information they want to receive, and Dataminr algorithms use the full publicly available data set of Twitter Tracking Twitter posts enables a company to get ahead of an evolving story and help to shape the narrative. Twombly says Dataminr has “deep and broad relationships” with corporate customers and delivers information that can possibly be used by multiple departments in an organisation. The company’s services are useful across the full range of vertical markets in the security industry, from transportation to major industrials to financial services to energy. In the education vertical, major universities are customers, as are local school districts. Customers can customise the kind of information they want to receive, and Dataminr algorithms use the full publicly available data set of Twitter. Twombly says the company’s software is constantly evolving and being fine-tuned in response to changing needs. Dataminr is a “strategic partner” of the social media giant and works closely with them on product development, he adds.

Robust security for the cannabis market supply chain
Robust security for the cannabis market supply chain

It's no secret that one of the next market segments to see exceptional growth in the United States is somewhat non-traditional: cannabis. The global cannabis market is projected to reach $60 billion by 2024, according to Ameri Research, fueled by the increasing legalisation and decriminalisation across much of the United States. It is estimated that 22 million pounds of marijuana are grown each year in the United States, with 80 percent coming from California, Tennessee, Kentucky, Hawaii and Washington, according to Mother Jones. Unlike other products, this commodity is valuable from the moment the seeds go in the ground to the exchanging of money for end-user products - and at every point in between. Within large greenhouses, 360-degree cameras that show a wide field of view are essential for cannabis protection From seedlings to selling, securing every point within the supply chain is vital to the assets being distributed, and companies are now realising how lucrative this endeavour can be. Critical to the success of the industry is keeping the merchandise secure and the workers safe. In this article, we explore each part of the supply chain within the cannabis market and address ways of implementing robust security measures.  Plants, fields and greenhouses This is one industry where money actually grows on trees! When cannabis crops are planted either in greenhouses or in fields, security becomes critical, since the plants themselves are worth a significant amount of money. A single truckload can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, so securing the load is crucial to the process Producers don't want plants stolen – especially high-end varieties that garner a bigger profit when harvested and sold – and the size of the plants make theft a greater possibility. Video surveillance becomes vital at this point and can be used in a variety of ways. Within large greenhouses, single cameras that can cover a wide expanse of space, such as cameras that offer 360-degree views, are essential and can provide more coverage with less investment overall than traditional narrow field-of-view cameras. Advanced technology, such as unmanned aerial vehicles (or drones), are also being used in open fields in an effort to protect these plants.  Comprehensive video surveillance becomes the main tool for thwarting cannabis theft and addressing incidents as they arise Transportation and protection Once the plants are mature enough to be harvested, they must be transported to a production facility where they are either dried or cured based on the needs of the grower, as well as processed and transformed into edible products to be sold at retail locations. There are already a range of companies that specialise in keeping these crop yields safe while they are transported: think Brinks armoured transportation used for cash, but for cannabis. A single truckload can be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars – if not more – so securing the load is crucial to the process. Losing one of these loads can lead to large-scale losses for a producer. Surveillance equipment that can withstand sanitation standards and power-washing is paramount for effective protection After being transported, cannabis must be processed. In these environments, where strict handling processes are in place, surveillance equipment that can withstand sanitation standards and power-washing is paramount. This requires camera enclosures that are rated for resistance to high-pressure water jets, dust and vandalism/tampering. Since edible processing requires stringent regulations be followed, it becomes more critical for security managers to identify solutions that carry the NSF Mark, making them compliant with standards set forth for commercial food equipment in North America, or the HCV EU, the equivalent in Europe.  Many of these locations handle and store large amounts of cash since customers have to pay with cash Retail protection As the final products come out of processing and go into storefronts to be sold by retailers in States that have recreational or medical facilities, there's another level of security that must be in place to protect these transactions. But careful considerations must be made. Traditional security tags cannot generally be used because of the small size of many of the end products, making it more difficult to track with tracking devices.Traditional security tags cannot generally be used because of the small size of many of the end products In this instance, comprehensive video surveillance becomes the main tool for thwarting theft and addressing incidents as they arise. In these locations, a loss prevention or security officer has to be an integral part of the team. Another consideration is the careful screening of the potential employees.  Since the federal government doesn't recognise cannabis producers and retailers, banks that are federally insured through the FDIC don't accept money from these establishments, meaning that many of these locations handle and store large amounts of cash since customers have to pay with cash. There must be security measures in place for these kinds of transactions, including the ability for video surveillance to be played back instantaneously in the event of an incident at a cash register. The cannabis market comes with a variety of challenges at each and every step of the operation, from growing to transport to production and sales. Video surveillance and business intelligence solutions are ideal for these applications, and as the market grows, more and more security companies will look to cater to the market.