End Users '20 under 40' 2017—Max Kidd

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Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Max Kidd, 32

Associate director of technology, The University of Texas at Arlington Police Department

Arlington, Texas

Max Kidd got involved in security after getting involved with The University of Texas at Arlington a little more than two and a half years ago. “When I started at UTA, I was hired to do police-specific IT,” Kidd said. “But, what came along with that … was all of the physical security side.”

The campus has about 4,100 students and 60 buildings with security installations, Kidd estimated. “What I handle is all of the physical security in regards to cameras and intrusion and PD specific access control. I fall under the police chain. I also do all of the police information technology,” Kidd said.

“I think we’re unique in that we self-install all of our cameras and I have another guy that works with me to help coordinate that effort,” said Kidd. He added that this could become more common for similar sized environments, “because you can really control the end product if you’re not having to constantly put it out for bid every year.”

The university just installed a self-learning camera analytic that—instead of being rules-based—it uses a two-week learning period to then determine any anomalous activity. “The idea is to change the perception from being reactive with the cameras to taking a more proactive approach,” Kidd said.

At a university, state budgets have an impact on security. “If we are given less money, how do we use that more effectively to ensure the safety of the students and faculty and staff of the campus?”

Asked about the future of physical security, Kidd predicted that there will be more privacy concerns. “We’re a public university, it's public space outside … but does that give us a right to record you, store images of you into some database?”