Subscribe to Monitoring Matters RSS Feed

Monitoring Matters

by: Spencer Ives - Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Apartment Guide, a resource for renters and part of the digital marketing solutions company RentPath, recently published a blog highlighting security as an amenity many renters are looking for.

The blog included data from RentPath surveys including an “online, blind survey of 2,000 renters … conducted by Egg Strategy in conjunction with RentPath in 2017, with the final analysis completed in February 2018,” and an “online, blind survey of 750 renters conducted by RentPath Research between November 10 – December 4, 2017.” In addition, the blog referenced The 2017 Kingsley Nationwide Renter Report, which was conducted in July 2017 in partnership with the National Multifamily Housing Council and surveying 269,332 renters.

Angie Amon, director of research for RentPath, talked with Security Systems News about the trends among these reports. “People are looking for their home. It’s not a car that they’re going to rent for a few days, or even a car they’re going to buy that they could easily get rid of if it didn’t work out. It’s their home, and the things that they’re trying to do is make it feel like home. They want to feel safe, they want to feel secure … and that it’s not a hassle to live there,” Amon said.

RentPath distributed surveys to people seeking apartments, specifically renters that were open to developments with 50 or more units. “We really drilled down into a specific segment of renter population,” Amon said.

Despite prompting survey takers to “think big” and be imaginative, many still put emphasis on practical conveniences like having a washer and dryer in their unit, Amon said.

RentPath also asked survey respondents to select an item that most interested them and one that least interested them out of larger groups. “Out of that came the gated access, the security measure,” Amon said, and this group was the highest at 35 percent. “That was the number one ‘most interested’ thing that people mentioned, and had the fewest votes of ‘least interested’ in.”

The company recognized another trend of people looking for app-controlled door locks, rating at 25 percent.

Property managers and companies could benefit from emphasizing the security measures at their properties, according to Amon. “It comes up over and over and over again in both the quantitative and the qualitative work that we do, where people talk about wanting to be in a safe area. And they define that in different ways, some of it has to do with what security measures are at the property … others define it by what kind of activity is going on in the area.”

by: Spencer Ives - Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Avigilon Corporation, a Motorola Solutions company, recently announced that its Avigilon Blue cloud platform is now integrated with SureView Systems Immix CS and Immix CC software, which will support professional video monitoring.

The Avigilon Blue cloud platform features patented self-learning video analytics that detect movements of people and vehicles and generate an alarm with a short video clip, allowing central station operators to more efficiently verify and respond to potentially critical events. The integration with Immix CS and Immix CC software will feature alarms with live and recorded video as well as audio transmission, the announcement noted.

"Video analytics-based alarm management will enable central stations to manage significantly more cameras and sites with fewer resources and help provide faster response to events, which ultimately creates a better monitoring experience for both the central stations and the end users," Ryan Nolan, senior vice president of business operations at Avigilon, said in the announcement. "With our advanced video analytics, the Avigilon Blue platform integrated with SureView software will provide our customers with a single point of control for security response and coordination."

The Avigilon Blue integration with SureView Immix CS and Immix CC software is expected to be available in November 2018, the announcement noted.

"At SureView, we develop a powerful monitoring platform to improve customers' ability to manage and respond to security events," Simon Morgan, CTO at SureView Systems, said in a prepared statement. "With Avigilon Blue's exceptionally accurate analytics and low false alarms, this new integration will further enhance the operational efficiency and value of professional monitoring services."

by: Spencer Ives - Wednesday, October 17, 2018

I-View Now, provider of a cloud-based video monitoring platforms for central stations, recently announced an updated and improved integration with monitoring center automation software platform partner MASterMind.

This updated integration improves signaling by utilizing a dedicated MASrecv I-View Now Receiver. Built in conjunction with MAS, these processes employ dedicated and proprietary signal types and signal formats which provide richer contextual information and video, the company said.

“We are thrilled to further our partnership with MASterMind and offer these enhanced features to monitoring stations and their customers. This integration enables the distribution of better information to end users, operators, and first responders,” Larry Folsom, president of I-View Now, said in the announcement. “We’re very proud of this integration allowing for true collaboration between all parties. Our ultimate goal is to catch the bad guy more often, while greatly reducing unwanted false alarm dispatches.”

The MASterMind Auto-Notification and Verification Interface with I-View Now integration provides mobile verification to central station customers. This process allows the end user to cancel the alarm, request dispatch, and call the monitoring center.

“A key value at MAS has always been to help alarm monitoring stations streamline their dispatching processes and provide better service to their customers,” Shin Voeks, general manager for MAS, said in a prepared statement. “The MASterMind integration with I-View enables users to conveniently cancel or confirm an alarm using their mobile devices, and allows monitoring stations to respond to alarms more effectively.”

by: Spencer Ives - Wednesday, October 10, 2018

OGDEN, Utah—Last week, on Oct. 3, there was a test of the Presidential Alert system, which went out to televisions and radio as well as mobile phones. AvantGuard Monitoring, based here, noticed that there was a spike of false alarms—including glass break sensors and PERS button presses—linked to the test.

“Oftentimes, [when] we see a spike in a certain kind of alarms, they’re related to a storm or a localized natural disaster, and it generally affects a certain type of alarm like a security [system],” Justin Bailey, AvantGuard’s president and COO, told SSN. A simultaneous spike in security and PERS was very unusual for the company, he added.

The alert’s tone happened to match the frequency that some glass break sensors look for, AvantGuard said in an announcement, which caused the sensors to send false alarms. “It was a unique event for us. … As we started looking to see a common causality on the security side, an unusual number of alarms were [triggered by] glass break sensors. It’s not uncommon to have one of them in the buffer at the scale we have,” Bailey said. AvantGuard’s monitoring centers received about 70 glass break alarms that it can link to the presidential alert.

A member of AvantGuard’s team recognized the coincidence in the time of the alarms and the presidential alert, according to Bailey. “When you get a drop of signals, you know something is going on, because of the scale of how many alarms we received in that short time frame,” he said. “It was … part of our troubleshooting process to find commonalities and then get into causality. It was really just our good monitoring center leadership team that made that connection.”

AvantGuard received about 100 PERS alarms related to the presidential alert, as some seniors with PERS devices heard the sound of the alert and didn’t know what the alert tone was or if it was coming from their PERS device. “It was a matter of just talking to the subscribers as we connected to the two-way and—once we determined that they were ok—asking why it was that they had pushed their buttons,” Bailey said.

AvantGuard developed a system to address alarms that were likely false. “With the suspect alarms, we were able to partition them in a different queue, and then dedicate operators to work through those alarms that we believed were affected, allowing us to free up other operators to work alarms that we suspected … were actual, true alarms,” Bailey said.

“The reason we caught it and handled it so well is because we’ve already been prepared to deal with situations like that. So, I think it makes us more aware of challenges living in a connected world,” Bailey said.

by: Spencer Ives - Wednesday, October 3, 2018

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla.—UTC Climate, Controls & Security has completed its recently announced purchase of S2 Security, and will combine the newly acquired company with Lenel, creating LenelS2. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

LenelS2 will provide scalable, customer solutions in the access control and security management systems industry, serving global enterprises to small- and mid-sized companies, the announcement said. The business is part of UTC Climate, Controls & Security, a unit of United Technologies Corp.

"LenelS2 unites two world-class teams with complementary strengths," Alex Housten, VP and GM, Fire & Security Products, UTC Climate, Controls & Security, said in the announcement. "Together, we have more than 50,000 systems installed worldwide. We look forward to providing enhanced service capabilities and offerings for our customers, and accelerating our access control and video-centric solutions for intelligent buildings across the globe."

Lenel president Jeff Stanek will lead the new organization and S2 Security founder and CEO John Moss will serve as chief product officer. The broader leadership team will consist of key members from each company, the announcement said.

"These are two leading brands that share a strong culture of innovation and commitment to customer service," Stanek said in a prepared statement. "Together, we will harness the power of our talented workforce to better serve the needs of customers and offer them more choices."

Moss said in the announcement, "The depth of Lenel's OnGuard platform and BlueDiamond™ mobile credentialing together with the breadth of S2's product ecosystem and channel, creates a new offering that is far greater than the sum of its parts."

Moss continued, "We will continue to advance the capabilities of all product lines, including NetBox and OnGuard."

Houlihan Lokey, global boutique investment bank focused on M+A and capital raising transactions, advised S2 on the transaction. The bank has a practice focused on the security industry and had developed a relationship with Moss, Michael Morabito, director at Houlihan Lokey, told Security Systems News.

“The sale process was robust with strong interest from a number of parties both domestic and foreign – the interest level from financial sponsors interested in deploying capital in the security industry was strong,” Morabito said.

He continued, “For Lenel/UTC, the new LenelS2 combination helps them to re-invigorate innovation within their organization, helps complement Lenel’s enterprise end-user base with S2’s strong SMB end-users/references, add world-class access control as well as video solutions.”

by: Spencer Ives - Wednesday, September 26, 2018

MIDLAND, Ontario—Huronia Alarm & Fire Security Inc., a full service security company based here, recently announced its purchase of Ontario Security Systems' monitored accounts.

OSS president and owner Henry Droder wanted to retire, and “we were already doing their monitoring, so, it made sense for him to pass the business over to us,” Rob Thorburn Jr., Huronia’s president and CEO, told Security Systems News. “The customers already knew of us, already [were] familiar with our station. … It’s a pretty seamless integration going forward.”

The deal, finalized at the end of August, brought about 450 accounts to Huronia. This account base was mostly commercial, small-to-medium business. Huronia’s total account base is now more than 10,000 monitored customers, with about 60 percent of those being residential.

OSS was a well-run, family owned business, Thorburn noted. “Since they’re in our backyard, it just makes sense to stay with a local company, rather than going to a national,” he said. “It fits within out boundaries quite nicely.”

Huronia’s main footprint is around Georgian Bay in Ontario, Thorburn said. “The nice thing about it: [OSS] accounts can be serviced out of three offices easily, because it’s about equal distance—more or less within 15 minutes of every office,” he said.

by: Spencer Ives - Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Security Systems News is preparing to once again highlight notable women in the security industry, with a special Women in Security feature in our December print edition, as well as online.

Security has traditionally been a male-dominated industry. SSN has been doing this feature for several years and the response has been great each year—hearing from various professionals and companies about the importance of promoting diversity in the industry.

If there is a woman in your business that you feel should be applauded, please email her name and contact information to us, along with a message about why you believe she should be recognized. Emails can be sent to Sives@securitysystemsnews.com.

If you are interested to see SSN’s Women in Security profile articles from last year, this article will give you an overview and direct you to each piece. 

by: Spencer Ives - Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Earlier this year, Bates Security, headquartered in Lexington, Ky., acquired ABCO Security, which is based in Eastern Kentucky. Now, ABCO Security is refreshing its brand with the same name. Jeremy Bates, company president, talked with Security Systems News about the rebrand and what it means for both companies.

“The whole … intent was to keep ABCO as its own separate business down there—support them as much as we could from the corporate office, but we wanted to maintain their brand in that area. They’re very well know, very well respected. I’ve known them for years,” Bates said.

“The integration of their company into Bates Security has been great,” he continued, citing instances where the companies will help by servicing each other’s accounts when needed.

The ABCO Security logo was recognizable for having “ABCO” in red, with “Security” below that in black, Bates said. In the brand refresh, both of these elements remain, but with a slight change to the font and putting the name in a yellow octagon, it shares elements of Bates Security’s logo design.

Another element unchanged in the refresh is the company’s tagline: “People who know, trust ABCO.”

Rolling out the new yellow octagon yard signs with all ABCO customers serves a dual purpose. “It just stands out a whole lot more, which is good for us for advertising, but it’s also good for the customer as far as letting people know that they’ve got a top-notch security company protecting them,” Bates said.

The brand refresh also included changing the company’s website, vehicles, graphics, communication and correspondence, “giving ABCO a very consistent look. So, it’s more impactful to where people are noticing us more.”

The company has also started TV, radio and billboard advertising to reinforce the new appearance.

Bates said that the brand refresh “shows our dedication to ABCO security. It shows to the employees that we’re serious about investing in the company to make it successful. It shows the customers that we are investing in the company to maintain the level of service that they are accustomed to. And, it shows to the community that we are investing in ABCO because we want to maintain and grow its reputation and its success in the community.”

The brand refresh was unveiled at a ribbon cutting ceremony on Aug. 13.

by: Spencer Ives - Wednesday, September 5, 2018

ASIS International recently announced that Air Force Major General Bradley D. Spacy and former Trump Administration Deputy National Security Advisor K.T. McFarland will join the keynote lineup for Global Security Exchange. In the first year of its rebrand following a 63-year history as the ASIS International Seminar and Exhibits, GSX will be held at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Sept. 23 to 27.

“Our keynote lineup—featuring recognized experts in global affairs, technological innovation and industry transformation—delivers on our new brand promise to host a truly comprehensive global event,” Richard E. Chase, CPP, PCI, PSP, 2018 president of ASIS International, said in the announcement. “These speakers provide diverse perspectives that will set the tone for each day and bring to light both the risks and opportunities facing the profession and businesses at-large.”

As Commander of the Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center, General Spacy is responsible for mission support capabilities to 77 Air Force installations, nine major commands and two direct reporting units with an annual budget of approximately $10 billion. His Sept. 26 keynote, kicking off Military and Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, will examine the changing security landscape, both in the U.S. and around the world, ASIS said.

Spacy will also provide details on the new AFWERX innovation and tech hub in Las Vegas and how the Air Force is looking to collaborate with the private sector to bring new security product ideas to market. Attendees will also learn about the evolving AFWERX/ASIS partnership and will be the first to hear a special announcement about the AFWERX Challenge.

McFarland will close out the conference on Sept. 27 with her address, which will cover geopolitics around the globe. As the first deputy national security advisor in the Trump Administration, she will share an insider’s perspective on critical foreign policy and defense issues. McFarland’s presentation is open to all GSX registrants—including Expo-Only registration.

Spacy and McFarland join the GSX keynote program, which includes CNN Host Fareed Zakaria and futurist Scott Klososky.

by: Spencer Ives - Friday, August 24, 2018

Leadership is a big topic around the Security Systems News office right now.

We have our Leadership Talks series. Through this series, we get the chance to talk with notable professionals throughout the industry about their distinct leadership approaches and styles.

This series inspired our currently News Poll, which you can find by clicking here. We’d like to hear from all of our readers about the styles of leadership you respond best to, as well as what best suits your company. Feel free to weigh in and we always appreciate extra comments.

On top of those two items, we have chosen (but are not yet announcing) the 2018 class of winners for Security Systems News’ annual “20 under 40” awards. Through this annual recognition, we get to speak to a whole group of promising young professionals that stand as the current and next generations of leaders for the physical security industry—both in the dealer, integrator and monitoring side, as well as the end user side.

We are now in the beginning phases of reaching out to and congratulating this year’s honorees. In the process, we are hearing about how they lead teams, groups, or entire companies, and the leaders that mentored these “20 under 40” winners when they first started in the industry.

Keep an eye out in future months for the whole collection of feature articles on this year’s “20 under 40” class. Be sure to also take note of the leaders you see in your company and, if eligible, nominate them for next year’s awards.

Pages