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The Importance of a Proactive Physical Security Strategy

How the implementation of new technologies leads to a smarter security approach

Today’s world has dramatically changed the concepts of security and technology, as organizations no longer only install surveillance cameras and physical security devices, they require much more than that to stay prepared. Current news stories are evidence of how times are changing—they’re littered with headlines of increased potential threats ranging from cyber attacks and ransomware to organized crime syndicates.

Reacting after the fact to an unforeseen security event used to be the only option. But now, as organizations are facing a new risk paradigm that encompasses both cyber and physical threats, the level of intelligence needed to be fully prepared has increased tremendously. And this expansion has led to a new and smarter type of security approach—one that is proactive rather than reactive.

At a retail store, bank, hospital, or even an online website, the minute a security incident begins, officials have no time to waste. One small breach can rapidly lead to a larger disruption, ultimately affecting the institution’s brand and operations. Instead of spending valuable time attempting to mitigate the incident, the trend toward a proactive approach allows security teams to identify an event before it occurs or respond quicker to one that has already begun.

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The key to being proactive is knowledge—the more pieces of data gathered, the greater the likelihood of recognizing a vulnerability. Businesses must go beyond simply utilizing video surveillance for security to achieve this level of insight. Tools such as embedded network video recorders, IP cameras, integrated analytics, the cloud, and powerful notification capabilities can be used cohesively to create a holistic security system, from capturing information inside and outside of a facility to conducting investigations.

The Cloud

The potential for the cloud is nearly limitless. As higher upstream bandwidth continues to expand and the cost of cloud computing and storage continues to come down, companies are presented with new levels of flexibility. Within this structure, they can choose whichever architecture best suits their needs, whether it be a fully on-premise solution, fully cloud enabled solution, or a hybrid structure.

The ability for multiple geographic locations to access all of an organization’s data in one unified platform significantly enhances operations and streamlines processes. The cloud is both resilient and scalable, allowing organizations to use only the space needed, and to move to the most current and updated software versions automatically. When it comes to addressing and identifying security threats, the cloud enables institutions to share real-time intelligence, mitigate risk, and ensure efficient response. By combining the cloud with other trends such as Big Data analysis, deep learning, and the Internet of Things (IoT), organizations can greatly elevate their ability to look at security in a proactive manner.

Analytics/Deep Learning

Deep learning is defined as a machine learning technique that learns features and tasks directly from data. Its significant value stems from the need for executives to be able to quickly make sense of vast amounts of information for more effective decisions and immediate action. Machine learning has set the stage for deep learning to take over. In surveillance, for example, networked deep learning systems can now recognize the same faces from photos and video feeds from different times and locations.

The power of analytics has come a long way, and its use in various industries is more prominent now than ever before. Deep learning is being embraced across the board as a new method of obtaining intelligence in a number of business operations, from security to marketing to entertainment to banking. Organizations can then combine analytics capabilities and deep learning with the cloud to move toward a proactive security approach.

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But the ability to be proactive is only as strong as the infrastructure a company has in place. For example, a place like an airport might have robust security measures in place to conduct things like people detection, which is very effective with deep learning analytics. Still, it requires a fair amount of horsepower to analyze the video in a way that can provide actionable intelligence to the end user. While a large location like an airport may have the infrastructure in place to handle large amounts of data, other organizations, such as banks, must be strategic in how and where they use analytics. This is where the cloud comes into play. Rather than sending all video to the cloud for analysis, users can opt to send a subset of video at a local location to the cloud, where relevant stakeholders can gain access and make appropriate decisions.

Use cases for these solutions are only just beginning to be imagined. For example, on the security side, integrated analytic solutions can leverage artificial intelligence to enhance a bank’s monitoring, reporting, and investigative capabilities by automatically pinpointing potential breaches and events. When combined with the cloud, information sharing with law enforcement agencies becomes instantaneous, in turn reducing investigation times.

The Bottom Line

With the risk landscape constantly evolving, a company’s security system needs to be prepared for modern criminals. Today’s enterprise organizations simply can’t afford the consequences of weaknesses or vulnerabilities in a network or safety strategy. While pairing the cloud with the advanced analytics of deep learning is one way to ensure security breaches do not go undetected, the real key to a proactive security approach is knowledge. The more information stakeholders have, the more prepared they are to respond to security events, and eventually, the security system will be able to make predictions. Technology is a tool that lessens the burden of responding to security events. It’s up to integrators and end users to deploy the solution that makes sense for them.

About the Author

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Matt Tengwall
Matt Tengwall

Matt Tengwall is vice president and general manager of fraud and security solutions at Verint Systems. Before this role, he served as vice president of sales in the North American market for Verint. Over the course of his career, he has focused on building strong strategic partnerships and alliances, creative sales strategies, and educational tools for customers.

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