What we consider to be the biggest technical
breakthrough in alarm monitoring is still failing to take off in the
manner we’d expect. It’s video monitoring, including video verification
of intrusion events, a technology that reduces false alarm call outs and
allows operators to ring police directly in the event of a verified
THERE’S no doubt whatever that
technology is now capable of delivering video verification and alarm
monitoring in real time over existing networks. Thanks to H.264 and the
advent of low cost, high resolution cameras equipped with IR capability,
getting usable images down the line is a straightforward process.
me there’s more capability in remote video monitoring than we are
currently seeing, especially given the technology offers monitoring
stations the ability to deliver a drop-in service, where operators will
call up a customer camera if an alert button is pressed and keep an eye
on a situation – perhaps in a late night retail store. Another neat
application is delivery of video for monitoring of an opening/closing or
video to monitor events naturally leads to using video as a potential
replacement for guard services and if there’s a team capable of handling
response, this can work well, particularly if there’s audio combined
with video. Challenging, is the fact that a video solution is remote and
it cannot intervene or respond in the same way a security officer can.
video monitoring can help though, is in checking license plates of
vehicles for transport companies and opening gates remotely if the
vehicle appears in the day’s manifest. Large operations may have
thousands of heavy vehicle movements a day and being able to handle
multiple entries from a single control point delivers significant
savings, particular after hours and on weekends.
to me video verification is currently the biggest potential application
of remote video monitoring – less in domestic than in commercial
applications. I think at some point in the future, video verification
will be a standard demanded by insurance companies – perhaps not for all
businesses but for high risk businesses or those experiencing multiple
break-ins or incidents.
of the great things about video verification, and one of the reasons
industry associations should get behind the technology in my opinion, is
its impact on false alarms. There’s no doubt there’s a double-edged
sword here, given that reducing the number of responses by 80 or 90 per
cent would be likely to lead to patrol company failures. In some ways
then, false alarms provide a built-in subsidy allowing the existence of
patrol companies that also respond to genuine alarm events.
said, best practise should dictate an end to all false alarms and more
than any other technology, video verification offers our industry the
capability to deliver this level of performance to customers prepared to
pay for it. Not only does video verification offer the ability to end
all false alarms, it’s a relatively easy fix, too.
other parts of the world, pressure on shrinking police forces is likely
to drive the move to video verification. Typically, the folks in blue
will not respond to an unverified alarm event – ever – and that’s in
Australia as well as overseas.
video verification ever be written into an Australian standard as best
practise for alarm systems? In my opinion it should be, giving
installers and monitoring stations a selling point that differentiates
their clearly superior monitoring and alarm installation services. One
of the challenges for monitoring and alarm installation companies is
lean returns on installs and ongoing monitoring revenue. Video
verification offers an additional selling point that leverages existing
capabilities with a minimum of extra hardware.
key issue with all kinds of video verification is that there are no
industry standards for resolution, delivery path, compression type,
encryption level, minimum scene illumination (say 5m with IR), or any
other relevant performance parameter. Given the thought that goes into
ensuring alarm comms get through with the least possible delay, I think
it’s a mistake for video verification to evolve into a welter of
proprietary ‘standards’ with no guiding principles.
fairness, such official standards could be relatively broad, covering a
range of resolutions, encryption protocols and comms paths, with a
security level assigned to each solution, allowing end users to be sure
what it is they are paying for. But there’s a bigger issue here. Without
a common standard, a common reporting protocol, a common receiver-type
(off-shelf server with common software, or an alarm monitoring software
that integrates video), monitoring stations are painted into a farcical
corner when it comes to the only technology that could eliminate false
alarms for all time. They’ll have a choice - to standardize on one
proprietary video solution and accept no others, or duplicate their
video verification systems endlessly.
could mean dozens of video verification systems in one control room,
none compatible with any other, or it could mean the monitoring station
will need to build its own private video verification solution and
integrate everyone’s cameras or video verification solutions into it.
Further, installers are not likely to only install one brand so they’ll
install what costs a customer least, changing monitoring stations to get
the support they require.
present there are only a handful of providers offering video
verification and given the proprietary nature of their systems, each has
standardised on a single system by default. But taking video
verification to its ultimate conclusion is going to require plenty of
work and plenty of talk between manufacturers, monitoring stations,
installers and end users.
the early days of the alarm industry, all reporting techniques were
proprietary and it was only after the late 1980s that considerable
standardization appeared. That plethora of standards was the bane of
early monitoring companies and it looks likely that in the absence of
concerted action, the expansion and integration of video verification
might follow the same torturous course.
have a choice - to standardize on one proprietary video solution and
accept no others, or duplicate their video verification systems
endlessly. This could mean dozens of video verification systems in one
control room, none compatible with any other”
source - http://www.securityelectronicsandnetworks.com/NewsDetail/12-08-22/considerations_of_video_monitoring.aspx