Sensor secures all-time record sales in South Africa for Hikvision

We are proud to announce that Sensor is the largest South African distribution partner for Hikvision, the world’s leading provider of innovative security products and solutions. 

Hikvision, with more than 26,000 employees of which over 13,000 are research and development engineers has more than 2 400 partners in over 23 locations around the world.

To encourage product sales and superior levels of customer support and aftersales service, Hikvision recognises those partners who achieve key milestones within the network. Hikvision has now confirmed Sensor’s record sales for 2018 – an achievement of which we are extremely proud.

Not only does this significant accomplishment reinforce our motto of setting the standard, it speaks volumes about our team members and our clients who are united in the ability to put together world standard solutions from our high-quality product offerings.

This is not the first time that we have been recognised by Hikvision for our efforts. In 2017 Sensor was named the winner of the Hikvision Global Excellent Service Partner Award for outstanding return merchandise authorization (RMA) and technical support.

Benefits for our clients 

Our achievements and recognition as Africa’s top distribution partner of Hikvision have added benefits for you as our valued client:

  • It positions us to strongly negotiate with Hikvision on your behalf
  • The volume of our turnover enables us to stock the largest variety of Hikvision products
  • As specialists in the Hikvision product range, Sensor is able to provide all the technical support to its clients for complete peace of mind

Hikvision product guides

As further support to our clients, we have compiled the following Hikvision product guides which are freely available at all our offices and downloadable from our website:

  • Hikvision Run Rate Product Guide (High demand products)
  • Hikvision High-End Surveillance Guide (Project-based products)
  • Hikvision Intercoms & Access Control Guide (New on the market)

We are certainly honoured by Hikvision’s recognition of our dedication to our powerful partnership and we are as proud of our achievement as we are of our clients who make this possible. Thank you for your continuing support as we look forward to finding more ways to raise the bar for our performance and client satisfaction even higher.

 

If you require more information, please contact Sensor Security Systems on +27 (0)11 314 9419, or on email at marketing@sensorsecurity.co.za

How close has video analytics grown to AI?

Article by: Brett van den Bosch (November 2018)

There is much competition in the artificial intelligence (AI) space, not least with respect to the name itself. Are we seeing the emergence of true AI, or is it just machine learning or sophisticated neural networks? The question is hotly debated, but let’s just say the marketing people have a more liberal view of what constitutes AI than the engineering community does. Without getting bogged down in nomenclature, what is beyond doubt is that the AI revolution is coming, and in the cutting-edge area of video analytics some would argue it’s already here.

To get the low-down on what’s happening in terms of applying AI to video analytics (VA), we posed a few questions to Johan Christiani, CCTV community manager at Fidelity ADT; Mahesh Saptharishi, chief technology officer at Avigilon; Andrew Mu, product marketing manager at Hikvision; Vanessa Tyne, senior account manager at Axis Communications; and Tony Yang, Southern African national manager at Uniview.

Is AI in VA a current reality, or more of a promise for the future?

Christiani: Intelligent surveillance and AI are developing at an alarming pace. Companies battle to stay ahead of one another and that adds more pressure on the offering and technologies of these CCTV brands.

Intelligent surveillance and AI includes many features, where an algorithm is developed to monitor the video and identify objects such as humans, vehicles and animals. Not only can AI distinguish between objects but it can learn behaviour and patterns, the system can either ignore the behaviour or patterns or notify the user depending on the requirement.

The more demand that is put on surveillance as a proactive measure, the more we can see the need for intelligent surveillance. The trend of relying more on machine-based processing and less on the human factor is evident and a reality. In our environment machines can process data more effectively than humans. However, humans are still a necessity to interact with these alerts and events to ensure maximum accuracy.

Mu: AI is already helping us get useful information in a timely way from volumes of data which are hard to analyse manually. AI is therefore making video surveillance much more efficient.

 Saptharishi: There is no denying it, the role of AI in security today is transformative. AI-powered video management software is helping to reduce the amount of time spent on surveillance, making security operators more efficient and effective at their jobs. By removing the need to constantly watch video screens and instead automating the ‘detection’ function of surveillance, AI technology allows operators to focus on what they do best: verifying and acting on critical events.

Tyne: AI is definitely starting to make a difference to video analytics and how they are being used on customer sites. AI is driving analytics to become smarter and more functional. Currently it is able to analyse the data and identify patterns, but it will still require the assistance of VA to understand what an immediate threat is versus a learned threat.

However I do think that we are still way off from being able to fully utilise the AI available at this point, and the cost is prohibitive for many customers. An example of how AI goes beyond VA is facial recognition: typical facial recognition VA requires a database that it will reference to, whereas AI learns who is a known face, and will send an alert when an unknown face enters a building.

Yang: AI has already made a big difference compared with VA results and capabilities. Uniview’s AI is based on a neural algorithm to do deep learning by itself, which includes VA, but is not only limited to this content. In traditional CCTV, VA usually analyses existing video content, which is a constant. This can meet most basic requirements, but for huge data volumes and complex environments it is not powerful enough to meet customers’ requirements. AI, on the other hand, can achieve dynamic and self-adapting video analytics. From now on, AI will make a big difference for the CCTV industry.

How is AI/deep learning impacting the VA market?

Saptharishi: Today, there are more cameras and recorded video than ever before, which means security operators are faced with the challenge of keeping pace. On top of that, people have short attention spans. However, AI is a technology that can help overcome this challenge as it doesn’t get bored and can analyse more video data than humans ever possibly could.

The role of AI in security is transformative. AI-powered video management software, such as Avigilon Control Center (ACC), is helping to make security operators more efficient and effective at their jobs. By removing the need to constantly watch video screens and automating the ‘detection’ function of surveillance, AI technology allows operators to free up their time and focus on making decisions. This not only expedites forensic investigations but enables real-time event response as well.

When integrated throughout a security system, AI technology has the potential to dramatically change security operations. Just as high-definition imaging has become a quintessential feature of today’s surveillance cameras, the tremendous value of AI technology has positioned it as a core component of security systems today, and in the future.

Tyne: The impact is that customers are looking for more self-learning platforms that will make control room operations smoother and more proactive. Operators watching a video monitor for more than twenty minutes lose 95% of their ability to maintain attention sufficient to discern significant events. And these events have been set up to alarm via VA.

VA have moved from basic tripwire applications to more detailed and finely calibrated detection analytics that are able to assess directional movement and the differences between a human and a vehicle. When it comes to VA, many customers believe that this is the ‘AI’ that they are looking for, however, in many instances it isn’t. Many surveillance vendors have what they call AI – LPR (licence-plate recognition), intruder breaches on perimeter, etc. but this is just clever analytics.

AI is far more powerful and bases itself on the concept of self-learning, not a rule-based environment, and building a base of ‘normal’ versus ‘abnormal’ behaviours – be it a vehicle driving the wrong way down a one-way street, or a person entering premises outside of normal hours. AI typically has a lower false alarm rate, having identified the behaviours of the environment.

Yang: AI/deep learning is more applicable for vertical markets such as safe city surveillance, whereas VA is more for the small and medium sized business market. Although video analytics have been improved a lot in terms of functionality and capability in the past several years, AI is getting more accurate and intelligent compared with VA.

What AI-powered analytic products are available today from your company?

Christiani: Fidelity ADT currently uses an AI-based platform with the ability to distinguish between humans, vehicles and animals as well as activities like loitering, groups of people, manual work (for example, carrying an object) and many more. Time schedules can be allocated to these events as per customer or community requirements.

Response vehicles will be dispatched on alarms and notifications based on the Service Operation Procedure agreements with the customer or community. We aim to provide accurate response through AI. Not only do we monitor these events but we also train the system on every single alert according to how accurate the event is. This actually trains the system from a human’s perspective. We ensure that our offering best serves our customers and that the technology we use stays as close to the latest developments as possible.

Mu: The AI technologies offered by Hikvision include facial recognition, vehicle detection (including plate number, colour and type), perimeter intruder prevention, as well as others. Our blacklist alarm application helps to improve social security, while the VIP recognition application improves service levels, and face check-in and attendance improve manager efficiency.

Our queue detection helps to shorten queuing time, and human behaviour analysis is able to detect when someone falls down so that emergencies at e.g. schools or hospitals can be responded to quickly. Our loitering application is used in important places, such as banks and so on, to improve security.

Saptharishi: Advanced AI technology, like Avigilon Appearance Search technology, provides security operators with the ability to quickly locate a specific person or vehicle of interest across an entire site. This enhanced search capability is designed to help improve response times by answering the critical ‘who, what, where and when’ of an investigation with decisive action.

Avigilon Unusual Motion Detection (UMD) technology uses AI in video search to bring a new level of automation to surveillance, helping to reduce hours of work reviewing recorded video to minutes. Without any pre-defined rules or setup, UMD technology is able to continuously learn what typical activity in the scene looks like, and then detect and flag unusual motion. This allows operators to search through large amounts of video faster, as UMD focuses their attention on the atypical events that may need further investigation.

Through the use of high-definition video analytics, pattern-based analytics algorithms, and teach-by-example capabilities, we provide preventative protection through proven self-learning video analytics technology. Avigilon’s advanced video pattern-based algorithms recognise the movements and characteristics of people and vehicles while ignoring any activity that isn’t relevant to a scene. Teach-by-example technology enables users to provide feedback about the accuracy of alarms to refine the device’s self-learning capabilities.

The Avigilon Artificial Intelligence Appliance (AI Appliance) adds patented self-learning video analytics and Avigilon Appearance Search technology to nearly any IP camera. When connected to Avigilon Control Center (ACC) software, customers can evolve legacy camera systems into powerful AI solutions – with automatic alerts of potentially critical events and the ability to search for and locate a person or vehicle of interest across an entire site.

Tyne: Axis Communications partners with companies that specialise in AI platforms. All our cameras can take VA on the edge, which helps curb the cost of infrastructure. These analytics can then filter into any number of AI platforms.

Yang: These days Uniview has six series of AI-powered analytic products for CCTV, covering ITS (intelligent transport system), safe city, big date storage, clouding computing, cut-edge computing and more.

The products include the Kunlun server (face recognition, people counting, video management), Yanshan server (video cybersecurity), Qinling server (big data, cloud computing and storage), Tianmu box camera (ITS), Hangu box camera (face recognition – can recognise 40 people simultaneously), and Tongguan face recognition gate.

Compared with previous solutions, these new AI-powered products are more stable and accurate, and massively reduce labour cost when deployed in big projects processing huge data sets.

What can we expect to see from AI-powered VA going forward?

Saptharishi: As the world becomes increasingly connected, the way we think about and interact with our security systems will continue to evolve across various verticals and applications. The emergence of GPU technology, in particular, has led to a dramatic increase in performance and value. With the democratisation of video analytics and increased use of AI and deep learning, we believe that video analytics will be inherent in digital surveillance and used in broader applications.

Cybersecurity will become more important as we move toward a more connected approach to security – particularly as our collected data becomes more sophisticated and critical.

Tyne: The growth that will be made into behavioural and situational awareness AI will be the changing force into the future. AI has the capability to proactively intercept and predict incidents. Something as complex or subtle as a fight breaking out or an employee breaking a safety procedure is not possible for a rule-based analytic to detect.

Going into the future, we foresee AI embedded onto camera chipsets, however this will be a few years off, when the AI platforms are more mature.

Yang: In the future, AI will be the leading video analytics technology to make a whole system smart – AI can be thought of as a brain versus VA as more of an organ. AI-powered systems will be the cornerstone of the smart city, serving to greatly improve people’s lifestyle, just like Alipay and PayPal have guided us into the cashless payment age.

For more information, contact your nearest Sensor Security branch.

Hikvision PSI Premier Award 2018 Winner

Article by: Andy Clutton, PSI Magazine (July 2018)

Hikvision won the CCTV Product of the Year category in the 2018 PSI Premier Awards at the ceremony held at Warren Weir, Luton Hoo on 12th July. The winning technology was the Hikvision DS-2PT3326IZ-DE3.

The DS-2PT3326IZ-DE3 is four cameras in one, which includes 3x fixed 2.0mm lenses that capture panoramic views in three directions (each lens covering 128.5°) and then 1x central PTZ with 2.8-12mm lens for capturing more zoomed in views for greater detail.

The annual PSI Premier Awards winners are chosen by security installers and systems integrators via the PSI website.

Sensor opens up more opportunities in access control

Access Control is a unique form of security in that it puts the safety of people first. Unlike passive security measures, access control allows authorised individuals to gain access to specific premises while keeping out unauthorised individuals. As such, Sensor Security is privileged to be part of this growing industry and has gained the rights to distribute Impro Technologies’ range of access control products.

One of the many reasons why Sensor identified Impro as an ideal partner is the fact that Impro products are designed and manufactured locally in South Africa. John Loudon, National Biometric / Access Control Business Unit Manager explains more. “Impro’s local nature means that its products are naturally well suited to the African climate and are sensitive to our unique local and social environmental needs.” John continues, “Not only does Impro allow our clients to offer a competitive solution to the end user, but we take pride in promoting a brand that hails from our own shores.”

Sensor is not the only company to recognise quality when it sees it. Founded in 1987, Impro Technologies was one of the first companies in the world to adopt Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and apply it to access control. This was before the South African government even had any legislation on RFID!

Today, Impro products are exported to over 60 countries across four continents and, as per all the other brands that Sensor partners with, comes with a superior standard of customer support.

John concludes, “Needless to say, we are very excited about this partnership as it means our clients now have access to an even wider choice of quality products.”

For more information contact Sensor Security Systems:

+27 (0)11 314 9419

marketing@sensorsecurity.co.za

www.sensorsecurity.co.za

Loudon joins Sensor

Fresh from winning the Hikvision Global Excellent Service Partner Reward for outstanding technical repairs (RMAs) and technical support for 2017, the only company to win an award from Africa, Sensor Security has welcomed John Loudon to its team.

Loudon is well known in the security industry and has worked with numerous key players over the course of his career. In his new position as the business unit manager of access control and biometrics, Loudon will be responsible for growing this fast-moving division which will see him representing the likes of Virdi, Morpho and Impro – which Sensor recently gained the rights to distribute.

In addition to the wealth of experience that John brings to the table, he previously worked at Impro Technologies at the turn of the millennium so he is familiar with the vision behind this innovative company and its products.

 

Announcement: Sensor Security expanding into wireless broadband

Moving with the times at high quality speed

Already leading from the front as the leading independent importers and distributers of access control, fibre optics, fire, PA and surveillance equipment, Sensor Security is expanding into an entirely new product class altogether: wireless, or more specifically, ultra-fast wireless broadband. This move means that Sensor’s clients will be able to transfer video, sound, and data over long distances via a wireless product solution without relying on third party data networks.

Marco Della Peruta, the Head of Technical Services at Sensor Security explains, “Video surveillance cameras typically transfer information using third-party networks, which can be limiting. And this is where we see data transfer technology, which can deliver fast, stable and reliable connectivity in high interference applications, playing a vital role.”

With this thinking in mind, Sensor set about finding the right partner brand to help them achieve their goal. “LigoWave is a US-based company that – just like our other premium brand partners – matches our commitment to quality. They also produce a carrier-class product, which means that there is a strong emphasis on durability and cost efficiency. In short, we feel that LigoWave is the ideal choice for the African market”.

New generation point to multipoint systems

Marco explains, “The way these products work is that data is sent via a sender and receiver. This in itself is not new, but what is exciting is that there is zero reliance on civil hardware – and zero red tape! What is also exciting is the carrier’s ability to handle high throughput (up to 700Mbps over a proprietary protocol) of triple-stream services, which is of key importance when it comes to heavy duty, real-time video surveillance.”

Overcoming physical challenges

“Another advantage,” Marco continues, “is that this new technology provides a solution to the challenge of covering rugged terrain. In South Africa, for example, remote locations or testing physical environments means that there is often no – or very little – existing cable infrastructure to make use of. What’s more, the LigoWave point to multipoint network can cover great distances.”

Industrial-rated design

“The intelligence behind the LigoWave product range is highly appealing too. The units are specifically designed to be easy to deploy and easy to configure. The hardware carries an IP67 weather rating and has integrated surge protection. And given the increase of noise in the unlicensed band, a reliable and stable connection is increasingly difficult to achieve, which is why metal enclosures work as a deflector eliminating interference caused by backlobes and rejecting noise when multiple base-stations are co-located on a single tower. Apart from radio frequency (RF) shielding, the metal housing works as a heatsink, allowing better RF performance by dissipating the heat generated by the radio. What’s more, units like the Integrated RapidFire have a 45 degree rotation option of the mounting bracket, which enables installers to change the polarity of the radio frequency put out by the units, which reduces interference even more.”

Game on

Marco concludes, “We are confident that breaking ground in a new product class is going to strengthen our position even more. We are also pleased to be able to bring a range of products to the local market that offer a very strong performance to cost ratio.”

For more information contact Marco Della Peruta at Sensor Security Systems:

+27 (0)11 314 9419

marco@sensorsecurity.co.za

www.sensorsecurity.co.za

Sensor Security – Winner of the Hikvision Global Excellent Service Partner Award, 2017

To encourage superior levels of service, Hikvision acknowledges its top achieving service partners with an annual award. Sensor Security has just been named the winner of the Hikvision Global Excellent Service Partner Reward for outstanding technical support and repairs (RMA’s) for 2017.

Bill Xu, Hikvision Channel Sales Manager, African Business Department, details the selection process, “The award is based on a distributor’s annual maintenance record and overall evaluation. After having reviewed the results of our 2400-plus partners, the Hikvision Channel Development Department narrowed its final selection to 8 Global Excellent Service Partners of which Sensor Security is one. What makes this even more remarkable is that only three companies were named for the Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) area and more notable still, is that Sensor is the only awardee in Africa.”

“To say that we are happy is an understatement,” says Marco Della Peruta, the Head of Technical Services at Sensor Security, “Achievements like these don’t happen overnight. They are the result of years’ of commitment and teamwork and we look forward to continually finding ways to optimise our technical service quality and raise the overall brand image of Hikvision in the local market.”

Jan Venter, Executive Chairman at Sensor Security, says, “Service is one of those things that many company’s talk about, but don’t always deliver. This award reinforces what we’ve always known about Sensor and reflects our motto of setting the standard.” Jan continues, “While our RMA and technical departments are our heroes, the Hikvision accolade further demonstrates that our team members are our greatest asset. And if anything, the news of this global achievement will further drive each and every one of us to keep reaching for new heights.”

For more information contact:

Jean Brown

+27 (0)11 314 9419

jean@sensorsecurity.co.za

Sensor enables customers even more

A company that repeatedly raises the bar has just done so again. Sensor Security, which is known for its end-to-end security solutions, is now offering their registered customers a similar comprehensive experience.

Henry Brown, Sales Director at Sensor Security says, “Sensor has formed an alliance with NRB Rental Solutions (Pty) Ltd to form Sensor Finance. This means that our registered dealer can access finance for the End User or in certain qualifying transactions, have access to bridging finance.”

Peet van Jaarsveld, director of Sensor explains the reasons behind this move, “We try to do what we can to make our customers lives easier and safer. Take, for example, the owner of a petrol service station. It is imperative that he, or she, has a security system in place that protects his assets, his members of staff and his customers. However, the cost of such an installation may be out of his immediate financial reach, but by entering into a rental agreement with Sensor Finance he can enjoy the reassurance of having state-of-the-art security in place plus the knowledge that the system is an off-balance sheet operating expense, saving him from dipping into his capital.”

“We are very excited about this partnership”, Henry continues. “NRB is well established in the industry and provides rental solutions to the likes of ITEC and Samsung, among others. What’s more, their association with Wesbank, coupled with a wealth of experience, enables them to provide a smooth and quick finance process in order to meet client’s needs promptly and intelligently. To us this is a great way in which we can enable our dealers and end clients to achieve more and it opens up new opportunities for us throughout Africa too.”

Relevant links:

For more information contact:

Peet van Jaarsveld

+27 (0)11 314 9419

peetvj@sensorsecurity.co.za

Video-based fire detection

Article from Hi-Tech Security Solutions magazine (February 2018)

One of the most devastating characteristics of a fire is its ability to spread. That’s why fast, reliable detection is paramount. While smoke detectors remain a vital component in nearly all scenarios, certain environments can benefit from additional protection. Where high ceilings are present, detecting a fire before it reaches a distant smoke detector can save valuable reaction time.

Just as important is the ability to correctly distinguish fire and smoke from other disturbances triggering false alarms – leading to financial ramifications. The video fire camera detects the flame or smoke at the source, significantly reducing detection time and simultaneously providing the operator with visual verification of the incident.

Bosch’s new video-based fire detection system features a physical detection model that ensures the reliable differentiation of disturbances and real fires. This intuitive technology delivers more accuracy than any other video-based fire detection platform available on the market. Bosch’s camera technology and intelligent software algorithms analyse the video footage directly in the camera. There’s no additional processing unit needed, reducing installation efforts and costs. The built-in relay output allows the camera to be connected to any fire panel. AVIOTEC 8000 is the answer for facilities used for industry, transportation, warehousing and energy utilities.

The VdS is an independent institution for enterprise safety and security, and harmonised body for international safety standards. This quality seal is considered an important investment criterion as the basis for later EN standardisation.

For more information contact Bosch Security Systems – South Africa & sub-Saharan Africa, +27 (0)11 651 9600, security.systems@za.bosch.com, www.http://africa.boschsecurity.com