Bridging the Great Divide - More than a decade ago, the talk was all about convergence. Well, the industry has converged, but there is now something more interesting on the horizon.

Industry Focus

Bridging the Great Divide

More than a decade ago, the talk was all about convergence. Well, the industry has converged, but there is now something more interesting on the horizon. Spectra Logic is coming into the market, not to compete with camera manufacturers or the software (VMS), but to develop storage; deep storage.

Brian Grainger, the chief sales officer at Spectra, said the company has identified the security industry as the next big thing. We already knew that, but his take on security will be a matter of offering new options in the world of storage.

Spectra recently turned 35 years old. It is privately owned and shows a profit year over year. They know exactly what they are doing, and it’s exciting to see them begin to wade into the industry. Grainger and I talked about one of their customers in the Dallas area—more precisely, the Dallas Independent School District (DISD). The school district uses the Spectra technology for storage systems only. They store all district records, emails and other necessary things.

“There are two divisions in the security world,” Grainger said. “The security world is experiencing something we have already been through with the media and entertainment industry, namely that the two parties involved didn’t talk to each other. If I were a CIO, I would force a marriage between IT and security.”

This isn’t news to the security industry, but Grainger makes a salient point. This has been a sticking point to some degree as end users bought IP cameras and wanted to put them on the IT network. IT was quite reluctant to have another thing on the network, but it’s working and I think the two camps have a general understanding of what has to be done, and what each party’s responsibility will be. The integrator also plays a key role in this dynamic.

“The integrator will have to come up to speed on education and certifications to install today’s solutions, if they want to survive,” Grainger said.

Grainger is very excited to be part of the security industry. He took a year sabbatical from Spectra, to travel around the world and talk to end users, integrators and manufacturers. The result will be Spectra joining the game. Grainger got so inspired about the security industry that he has hired four subject matter experts. Though he wouldn’t name them by name, they come from Solaratec; Discovery IT, an integrator on the West Coast; Arecont Vision and 3VR. All four are great representatives of the security industry.

“The reason we want to join the security industry is that we’re in business for storage; that’s it,” Grainger said. “We understand Big Data, and it is our core competency.”

Nathan C. Thompson, founder and CEO, knows the value of data; therefore, he knows the need for security. Twitter alone creates the need for 12 TB of storage per day. A typical security camera gathers as much as 105 GB of data per day. Now, you can understand why the security market is so inviting to Spectra. A lot of this is about IT security, but it also means that physical security plays a critical role in securing data centers, and so much more.

Spectra held their bi-annual Deep Storage Summit in Boulder, Colo., in October. One case study was particularly interesting from Richard Duke, chief systems architect of publishing services at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The LDS Church has various security measures in place at their Granite Mountain Vault near Salt Lake City. Access to the site is blocked by 21 ton doors of granite, which close out the vault. There is armed security 24 hours a day.

“The church takes physical security very seriously,” Duke said. “There are mantraps at the vault, but the church also uses card readers and IP cameras all over the world. Their monitoring center is tightly controlled as operators watch church property worldwide, such as visitor centers, mission homes and temples. Data security is just as important, and we have built a very good team to keep track of cyber security. Our team identifies where a cybersecurity attack comes from, and why.”

The physical security side has long been solving problems, and is now pared with the cyber side. We will hear more about cybersecurity in the commercial and industrial side very soon.

This article originally appeared in the November 2015 issue of Security Today.

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