Scan our QR code for more exciting content from ICD!

Solutions for your global security needs: security management software

As organizations grow and security devices and employability improve and expand, it can become increasingly difficult for large companies to stay on top of security both at a local and global level and to manage systems effectively and efficiently.

 

This white paper will take a look at different types of global security management software, as well as their employment and RIO, to help you assess whether this solution may be able to help your organization better manage its complex and widespread security systems.

 

 

 

Click to download the article in PDF format
Global Security Solutions, ICD
Solutions for your global security needs
Adobe Acrobat Document 855.4 KB

For more security knowledge, follow ICD on our LinkedIn Company Page.

Full article

Introduction

As organizations grow and security devices and employability improve and expand, it can become increasingly difficult for large companies to stay on top of security both at a local and global level and to manage systems effectively and efficiently.

 

There has therefore been the development of software that collects security data from a range of sources, locations and technologies providing one comprehensive platform from which everything can be viewed and managed together. These solutions are known as Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) systems. One industry leader in the field has also developed a Visual Command Center (VCC) which incorporates a larger range of data all visible on an interactive global map.

 

Using this software, global or regional Security Operations Centers have access to security data from around the world via one portal. It is therefore not only easier for Security Managers to deal with the large amounts of incoming data, but it also facilitates efficient, coordinated responses to security risks and incidents.

 

This white paper will take a look at different forms of this sophisticated software, as well as employment and RIO, to help you assess whether this solution may be able to help your organization better manage its complex and widespread security systems.

 

 

Physical Security Information Management

A cloud based solution, PSIM software provides a single platform for global organizations to effectively manage numerous security systems across multiple locations around the world. In addition, the software is also designed to help operators respond to risks and events efficiently through the use of various features and functions.

 

The software first collects data from all the independent security devices and systems, such as CCTV, access control and alarms systems (for a full standard list see below), before automatically analyzing this data and organizing it to identify real events and their priority. This information is then shared with the operator via alerts or other notifications.

 

Since Security Managers are alerted to risks and sent the relevant information as soon as an event occurs, PSIM saves end users a huge amount of time that would be spent monitoring all these devices separately. Features such as filtered searches also allow for certain areas to be closely monitored easily. Through remote monitoring via the software, authorized personnel can view a specific CCTV camera’s footage or the status of any integrated access control door at the click of a mouse from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.

 

Once notified, operators need to verify incoming alerts. If action needs to be taken, PSIM is able to provide step by step instructions on how to best manage the situation based on the organization’s policies and practices and can provide useful functions such as estimating reaction times for incidents in given locations and easy information sharing to help operators execute an action plan smoothly.

 

Moreover, the software is also able to produce regular compliance reports, reports tracking specific events and highly specialized reports for department heads. PSIM also monitors how each operator interacts with the system, tracking any manual changes to security systems.

PSIM therefore enables operators to manage an increasing amount of data from various security systems and helps them to respond in the best possible way.

 

Visual Command Centers

Arguably at the forefront of global security management technologies is a unique solution offered by IDV Solutions known as the Visual Command Center (VCC). This software, like PSIM, collects and analyzes security related data from a range of sources, but has capabilities and functions that surpass those of average PSIM solutions.

 

What makes VVC different is that the extent of data integrated is much greater. This information, all collected from back end data sources, can be both internal and external to include relevant local or global information that might affect risk or risk management, such as weather, traffic or nearby terrorist attacks (sample list below). Another factor that differentiates this platform from other PSIM platforms, is that all the data is ‘visually consolidated’ by organizing it all one fully comprehensive, interactive world map.

 

With this extensive range of security and risk related data, the VCC also incorporates features that enable end users to plan and execute responses to risk efficiently. For example, employee’s data can be stored within the software, organized by location making it easy to email all employees in one site who may be affected by an incident. Other useful information such drive time estimations using data from local traffic control can also help operators make informed decisions.

 

It is this range of data that is being constantly updated by RSS feeds that makes the VCC so valuable to organizations with extensive global operations. Breaches of security and other internal risks are drawn to the attention of operators as well as any incident or imminent threat which may affect the organization’s people, assets or business operations.

 

Like most PSIM systems, this software is browser based and can therefore be accessed from any device with browser ability, from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.

 

Integrated systems and data

PSIM software typically integrates the following devices or systems:

 

  • Access control systems
  • Alarm systems
  • CCTV cameras
  • Video content analysis
  • Barriers, bollards and turnstiles
  • Building management systems (e.g. elevators)
  • Electronic Article Surveillance (EAS)
  • Fire detection
  • GIS mapping systems
  • Intercom & IP phone
  • Intrusion detection systems (including perimeter intrusion)
  • Lighting control systems
  • Power monitoring systems

 

On top of the above devices, VCCs can also incorporate the following data:

 

External

  • Weather (including hurricane tracking)
  • Instances of terrorism
  • Local crime
  • Disease outbreaks
  • Natural disasters
  • Civil unrest
  • Current events
  • Traffic
  • And many more

Internal

  • Employee data (demographics, locations, contact details etc)
  • Building floor plans
  • Excel or word documents with relevant or useful data
  • And many more

Usage: example employment

Physical Security Information Management

 

PSIM systems have been adopted in a range of sectors including, but not limited to, corporate businesses, healthcare, education, manufacturing, energy and oil, retail, travel, transportation and law enforcement. PSIM can be used to manage the security system of a single site, across a wide region or on a global level.

 

For example, an organization may decide to employ a PSIM at one of their large and highly strategic office or campus sites to help manage their extensive security system efficiently and to better coordinate risk management. Through PSIM, the site’s Security Manager is able to integrate data from multiple systems and can identify and resolve security incidents with fewer security guards needed on the ground or in the operations room, therefore saving costs and time throughout the site’s security team.

 

On a larger scale, a municipal transport agency, for example, may find that a PSIM platform can help various different groups and users throughout their organization work more efficiently. The ability to monitor CCTV cameras from multiple locations on one interface, enforce system wide security protocols, and provide alerts and post event analysis could make significant improvements to operations across the organization.

 

Multinational corporations may also choose to adopt a PSIM software to manage their security systems making it much easier for Global Security Managers to manage security operations and provide coordinated, informed responses to incidents.

 

Visual Command Centers

 

Often employed on a larger scale than PSIM software, VCCs can be an incredible effective solution for large multinational corporations that want to identify and mitigate various types of risk across their regional or global operations.

 

VVCs can help Global Security Managers effectively manage thousands of cameras, card readers and alarms from numerous sites. This information, along with a range of other data feeds related to security, risk and operations, enables operators to see how the wider picture fits together. The map’s interactive display makes it easy for end users to add, find or analyze data and to consider how this may affect the company’s global operations, enabling them to make informed decisions quickly.

 

This software also performs an important role tracking the development of a risk or event throughout its duration since the system’s data is constantly being updated. For example, in the case of an approaching hurricane set to possibly endanger an organization’s employees or disrupt business operations across a large area, the VCC provides regular updates to the operator regarding the path of the hurricane and the people and resources that may be affected. The operator therefore has the necessary information and tools to contact the affected people and to form an action plan with the most up to date information.


Considering the ROI

Global security management platforms, although expensive to install in the first place, can provide a considerable return on investment, both in terms of in capital and through efficiency.

 

Once the software is in place, organizations require fewer manned guards or security personnel to monitor sites around the world since the software helps operators and Security Managers to identify possible risks and devise and execute action plans. In addition, PSIM platforms and VCCs can maximize the time and work of Global Security Managers: a process that might have taken a number of steps and 20-30 minutes to complete before can be completed in a matter of minutes through the sophisticated use of the software.

 

However, one thing that should also be considered when assessing ROI is the possible costs involved in maintaining the software or seeking support. Some PSIM software providers may charge additional necessary annual maintenance fees. It is also important to ensure you look into how the provider carries out system upgrades as if it requires a complete deployment of the software, this could mean your system is prone to errors or is unusable for a prolonged period of time.

 

Losing a mission critical system for a number of hours or several days could be incredibly expensive and risky for an organization’s global operations, so it is important to consider this carefully. At the very least, organizations should devise a ‘system down plan’ to try to minimize the effects of system failure and ensure smooth global operations in the event of something going wrong.

 

Conclusion

PSIM and VVCs are ideal platforms for large or multinational organizations that need to effectively manage and coordinate their security operations at a national, regional or global level.

 

With easy access to security systems and devices around the world, operators are alerted to possible or real risks and can therefore coordinate timely and effective responses to incidents.

 

Where PSIM software is sufficient for many organizations, the VVC offers a more comprehensive overview of global and regional threats due to the extensive data feeds which can be incorporated into the software. It is for this reason that numerous large multinational companies and various governmental bodies have adopted employing a VVC to build a comprehensive view of their global operations, risks and security.

 

Whether adopting a Visual Command Center or another type of Physical Security Information Management software, these systems allow security staff to gain an in depth understanding of security incidents and risks anywhere in the world and therefore significantly improve an organization’s ability to manage risk and maintain smooth global operations.