With so many companies closed and employees not in the buildings, it’s important that systems are checked regularly.
When people are able to return to work, they will want to step right back in where they left things – and have all systems “go.”
This is especially important for your HVAC, temperature controls and security systems. With the weather changing rapidly and spring trying really hard to come alive, temperature control systems must be checked and serviced, even while people aren’t in the building.
Security systems are also critical right now. Empty buildings can be a temptation to anyone looking to snag a few free computer monitors or office supplies. So having your systems checked and running properly is critical right now. You want to be sure that the systems protect your building and that only those who should be going in to check things are the people going in. So much of this can be done remotely, and we are more than happy to help.
These days, it’s not at all unusual to have to confirm identify before accessing an account or completing a transaction online. It’s not enough to simply input the username and password; you also must verify a code you received via text on a trusted device.
While this process known as two-factor authentication is encouraged
as a best practice online, it’s rarely mentioned as a best practice for in
person security. Gaining access to a facility is typically as simple as using a
key or swiping a card.
But shouldn’t we at least consider two-factor authentication for facility
security? I believe so.
It’s not hard to imagine a scenario where two-factor authentication
would be helpful. For instance, imagine an employee loses their key card or –
even worse – it’s stolen. If the thief acts quickly enough before the loss is
detected, he or she can gain access to a facility simply by swiping the card
and walking in the door.
Two-factor authentication would prevent that from happening. How? By
requiring two of three verifications of identity. We verify identity in three
1. What you know (a pin code)
2. What you have (credential like a card key)
3. Who/what you are (a biometric indicator, such as a finger print,
hand scan, face scan)
Imagine that the thief who stole the card attempted to gain access
to your facility by swiping it and entering the door. Two-factor authentication
would demand that they present either a pin code or biometric evidence in
addition to the credential. A PIN code would be a strong second step, but even
that can be stolen or even guessed. In addition, demanding a PIN code might
slow traffic flow and make the process inefficient.
What’s harder to fake is biometric evidence. It’s a lot more
difficult to steal someone’s face than it is to steal their key card.
What if video security cameras were integrated to enable facial
recognition in addition to credentials? The result would be a powerful,
efficient tool for maintaining facility integrity and keeping traffic flowing.
Interested in learning more about how you can integrate systems for
greater security and efficiency? Call for a consultation today.
The Nonprofit Security Grant Program expands access to funds
that will enable nonprofit organizations to enhance their security systems
using fencing, surveillance cameras, enhanced entry ways, windows, alarms and
communications systems, staff and personnel training, and contract security
Applying for a federal grant can be intimidating, but the Department of Homeland Security is hosting a series of free conference calls and webinars to help potential applicants understand more about the grants and the application process. To register, click the webinar title below:
ECT Services also offers security training and complete security system enhancement and servicing, including access control, video and gunshot detection. For a free consultation to review your organization’s current security systems and look for opportunities to enhance your capabilities, call 800 567-1180.
As ECT Services continues to grow as a trusted building
integration services partner nationally, we’re pleased to announce the
appointment of John Arnold as our vice president of Security Operations.
The newly created role will continue to expand the reach of
ECT Services capabilities across the country.
“One of the things the position represents is the growth in
that division that ECT has experienced over the past few years,” says Jeff
Murphy, president of ECT Services.
Arnold joined ECT Services in 2011 as an account manager
focusing on commercial and industrial security integration design and sales.
His areas of expertise include access control, IP video and intrusion detection
He quickly progressed to project management, where he led security
project planning, procurement, staffing and execution for dozens of projects
annual that ranged in size from a few thousand dollars to more than a million
“He has demonstrated a consistent ability to build, develop
and lead the Security Operations Team with excellence and grow the business
through building valuable relationships with our customers and vendors,” adds
Arnold’s skill is rooted in his deep experience in a variety of contexts across the security industry. Over the past 20 years, Arnold has built his expertise through roles leading security efforts for retailers as well as managing service operations and installations for vendors. As a result, more than 91 percent of the hundreds of projects he has led have been delivered on time and under budget.
Arnold’s path to leadership with ECT Services also enables
him to understand the business and customer needs end to end – from sales
through installation and service – and also opens up a path for others to advance
and deepen their skills.
The “build from within” culture that ECT Services has
fostered for more than 30 years means customers know they can rely on
consistent team of experts to partner with them.
To learn more about how you can partner with ECT Services,
call (800) 567-1180 for a consultation.
What’s the most important integration into every system that
we service and/or install?
Every single system must integrate with people in some way.
Every integration point opens up a new opportunity for a threat.
post from Security Magazine really raised my awareness about the
nature of insider threats and approaches to mitigating risk. What is an insider
threat? It is any act of theft, fraud, sabotage or violence instigated by
someone inside an organization. The post outlines several types of insider
threats and some tips on how to recognize each:
Unintentional insider threat. This threat isn’t caused by
someone acting maliciously; this type of threat is tipped off by someone who is
distracted or stressed. They forget or shortcut important steps. To guard
against this type of threat, be aware of staff members who are careless with
sensitive information, overshare on social media and consistently miss
Intellectual property/sensitive data theft. Do you have an
associate that “borrows” office materials for home use? Has gotten a poor
performance review, missed a promotion or is about to be fired? They may be a
risk to steal intellectual property or sensitive data for their own benefit on
their way out the door. That sensitive information could end up being used
against you by a competitor or other threat.
Insider fraud. Keep an eye out for associates who routinely
live beyond their means or are suddenly facing unexpected expenses. They could
be at risk of perpetrating insider fraud to benefit themselves and get out of a
Sabotage. The office bully isn’t just bad for morale. Bullying
is a red flag for sabotage. The saboteur wants to disrupt or even destroy work
in an effort to assert their dominance or get revenge for a slight.
Workplace violence. I see the threat of workplace violence
as a progression of sabotage. The perpetrator of workplace violence wants to go
beyond damaging a piece of equipment or undermining a sale. They want to cause
physical harm to those around them, perhaps in an outburst. They share
characteristics with saboteurs, but may also threaten violence.
Each of the above threats can be detected and mitigated with
team effort. We’d be happy to talk to you about how systems can be integrated
to help you detect these threats and others. Give us a call at (800) 567-1180
The sporting world is gearing up for the end of the NFL season and basketball season is in full swing, drawing lots of attention to huge sports venues.
With on-site crowds in the tens or hundreds of thousands and online and broadcast viewers in the millions, the opportunity for bad actors to capitalize on the attention is ripe. Even smaller scale local venues playing host to high school or college sports are at risk.
How are venues keeping fans safe? One tool in the tool box
is the Guardian Indoor Active Shooter Detection System. The Guardian indoor
shot detection system offered by Shooter Detection Services uses acoustic and
infrared sensors – no bigger and no more obtrusive than smoke detectors — to
automatically detect and instantly report shots fired. Guardian can integrate
with systems to automatically lock doors the moment a shot is detected,
limiting a shooter’s movement and/or keeping potential targets out of harm’s
SDS recently announced that one of their latest
installations was in a Florida sports venue. The system will protect key threat
areas throughout the stadium.
Guardian was developed in conjunction with the Defense
Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and a major defense contractor, and
is SAFETY Act Certified by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Approved
for U.K. Government Use by the Centre for the Protection of Critical
Infrastructure (CPNI), and SL4 Certified by the Australian Government’s
Security Construction & Equipment Committee (SCEC). SDS serves customers in
markets including K-12 and higher education, corporate, transportation,
government, retail, entertainment, utility and manufacturing, and property
ECT Services has enjoyed a long partnership with SDS, and
with our deep innovation and integration experience we are well equipped to
help facilities fully leverage Guardian’s capabilities alongside other security
and communication systems. In addition, we also offer a full range of security
Interested in learning more? Inquire about our next live fire demonstration event or a consultation. Contact us here.
Keep your customer central. Designing a solution to
keep valuable artwork safe could be very straightforward; lock it all up in a
vault and it will never get damaged, lost or stolen. But keeping artwork safe
isn’t the entire goal. Preserving art for the enjoyment and edification of the
public is the goal, and it’s difficult to engage with artwork that is locked
away or otherwise inaccessible.
DIA kept museum visitors central. The security system
functions like a channel for dialog between museum staff and visitors. Staff
uses the solution to gather data points about traffic patterns and issues to
gain insights into visitor needs. For instance, staff observed that visitors
were consistently getting too close to a particular object to peer at notes on
the artist and work. They determined that more prominent signage was needed to
help visitors engage with the work while keeping a safe distance.
Fortunately, Axis’ camera line was a perfect fit. Axis
modular cameras required only one cable for four cameras, and the cameras’
quality and coverage made it possible to cover an entire gallery with just four
cameras and one cable. That saved a lot of risk and resources and helped gain
efficiencies in cost and installation.
Need an innovative partner for your systems integration
project? We can help. Call (800) 567-1180 to connect for a consultation.
Halloween used to be a strictly neighborhood affair. On
October 31, kids raced home after school, donned their costumes, then headed
out with sacks in hand for trick or treating.
Today it’s blossomed into a community-wide affair. In the
weeks leading up to Halloween, schools, churches and even businesses get in on
the fun by hosting festivals or trunk or treat events.
These extracurricular activities are a great way
opportunities for community and employee relations, but they do pose some
safety risks. Here’s how to mitigate those risks and enjoy your event:
Bring safety to the table. While safety should be
everyone’s job, at least one person on your planning team should be tasked with
reviewing all plans. Responsibility should include identifying trip and fall
hazards, cordoning off equipment and areas that are unsafe for non-employees,
and traffic planning.
Get security involved early, too. The planning team
should also include a leader tasked with security. Security might focus on how
to prevent children or dependent adults and their adult guardians from getting
separated from each other, how to handle disruptions and loss prevention.
Change perspective. If you event is planned for
outside of your normal operating hours, and in particular for after dark, be
sure to do a thorough walk-through in and around your facility at that time of
the day. Traffic patterns change considerably throughout the day, and might
look quite different during your event than they do during normal operating
hours. The parking lot and facility look different, too. Scope out those
differences by doing a thorough walk through in advance.
Include contingency plans and safety drills. Guests
at your facility won’t know what to do in the event of sudden inclement
weather, a fire, or some other emergency. Make sure staff and volunteers are
fully prepared to respond. Staff and volunteers should know their
responsibilities in an emergency and should be prepared to guide guests to
Review security and access controls. Now is a good
time to ensure that your facility’s video and access control systems are
performing well. Cameras may need to be adjusted to accommodate different
traffic patterns. Access control may need to be modified to lock down certain
areas while opening up others. It’s a good time to review the flexibility and
configurability of your system.
Your business has been struck by a criminal. They were able
to break in and make off with thousands of dollars worth of valuable equipment
and inventory. Your cameras didn’t capture clear images of the perpetrator or
their transportation, but there’s a good chance that better images might be
available from other businesses along your street.
But it may take days before police are able to identify
cameras, track down owners and get their permission to view footage.
Thanks to Genetec, there’s now a solution to that problem.
When it comes to preventing and solving crime, public and
private entities now have a new collaborative tool at their fingertips.
Genetec announced today the release of a new camera registry
module for its Genetec Clearance platform. Genetec Clearance is a digital
evidence management system.
“The Genetec Clearance camera registry allows organizations
to reduce the time to fulfill access requests and share video evidence between
stakeholders operating across different systems, departments, and
jurisdictions,” said Erick Ceresato, Genetec Product Manager in a company press
release. “The technology allows organizations to maximize the use of their
staffing and provides investigators faster access to evidence to help enhance
their response, and focus on public safety within their communities.”
According to the release from Genetec, the new camera
registry module simplified the video request process. The registry allows
organization to share a registry of their cameras and allow authorized users to
request captured video footage from relevant cameras to aid in investigations.
The registry replaces the routine legwork that is typically
part of investigating. Rather than spending time hunting down cameras,
identifying who owns or has authority over a camera, contacting the camera’s
owner and requesting footage, the registry gives public safety agencies and
private businesses or citizens a place to collaborate.
The system allows administrators to set up their own custom
request forms and approval workflows. Once release of a video is approved, an
encrypted version is released and tracked appropriately.
The new camera registry module is a great
example of innovation from one of our valued partners. For more innovative
ideas, contact us for a consultation.
Shooter Detection Systems (SDS) announced early this week the pending release of a new wireless/battery-powered gunshot detection sensor that will reduce installation costs by 40 – 50 percent without compromising reliability or accuracy.
The new Guardian Wireless sensors have all the acoustic and
infrared gunshot detection features of the Guardian Indoor Active Shooter
Detection Power over Ethernet (PoE) sensors, but operate on a lithium battery
pack rather than wired power source. Guardian Wireless also utilizes secure
long-range wireless technology to scan the environment for gunshots while
filtering out false alerts.
Guardian Wireless’ backend software and integrations were
left unchanged, making it possible to integrate both wired and wireless sensors
in the same system. Partner technologies offered by Genetec, Everbridge,
Avigilon, and other SDS partner technologies will also continue to work
The new sensors are currently undergoing internal and third
party testing, and are anticipated to pass government certification and be
ready for market in early 2020.
The news comes at a good time for many charged with
enhancing facility safety and security. A deadly summer of mass shootings has
left business leaders, lawmakers and the public clamoring for solutions;
meanwhile, ever scarce resources are putting the squeeze on budgets. Guardian’s
lower price, high quality wireless sensor option may help put system within
reach as safety and security leaders plan 2020 budgets.
“We listened to the market and they’ve been asking for a
reliable, zero-calibration system that meets the high-performance standards of
the Guardian System,” said Christian Connors, SDS Chief Executive Officer in a
company press release. “We began in 2018 by refining the core Guardian
technology, redesigning hardware to incorporate battery power, then sourced a
wireless technology well known for its reliability and security with IoT
devices. Guardian Wireless will lower the overall customer cost by as much as
40-60 percent due to the reduction in infrastructure costs. Most importantly,
customers can now choose a wireless system and be assured that they are using
proven, reliable gunshot detection technology from a company they trust.”
Guardian indoor gunshot detection systems have been deployed
in Fortune 500 companies, sports stadiums, government facilities, schools and a
variety of educational institutions.
Interested in learning more about Guardian and other
integrated safety and security solutions? Call us today at (800) 567-1180 for a