Ask the Expert
This month's expert, Ron Waxman, looks at video surveillance trends for 2009.
- By Ron Waxman
- Dec 01, 2008
Although 2008 has been a tough year
for the nation’s economy, the security
industry has generally prospered.
Equipment manufacturers have done
their part by continuing to roll out new,
sophisticated products and solutions that
make it difficult to stay ahead of the curve.
ISSUE: What markets will experience
growth in the demand for video surveillance
during the next year?
SOLUTION: Over the past few years,
installations of video products have been
red-hot, and that trend will continue into
the new year. Schools, universities and
municipalities are leading the way in the
installation of large-scale video surveillance
systems. And as video technology
becomes less expensive, expect to see
even more use of video systems in residential
The education market has increased the
use of security equipment across the
board, with administrators implementing
not just cameras but also access control
and mass notification systems. A federal
law that went into effect last August
requiring universities to notify students
and staff when an emergency situation
occurs on campus is driving sales of mass
Small businesses will be using video
technology to a greater extent. Managers
can monitor their business for security
threats, check that company procedures
are being adhered to and gauge staff levels.
The use of cameras allows business
owners to remotely monitor situations
when traveling or from home. The cameras
also can provide video verification of
alarms and can help save hundreds of
thousands of dollars in false alarm fines.
Another big implementer of video surveillance
is city governments looking to
safeguard shopping and entertainment districts,
parking lots and parks. Mesh networking
is one way to transmit the video
data back to a central security center without
expensive trenching and cabling. The
technology has been installed in cities
across the country. I expect this part of the
industry to grow substantially in 2009.
ISSUE: What will drive security technology
innovation in 2009?
SOLUTION: A major driver of other new
security equipment and technologies is the
involvement of the corporate IT department,
which is looking for open architecture-
based systems to run over a network.
This convergence of physical and logical
security is affecting access control systems.
Web-based access systems eliminate the
need for separate security servers. By using
the corporate network, it is now possible to
eliminate expensive, on-site equipment and
let the system run over the Internet.
With so many new products and applications,
it is important to find a security
integrator that is up-to-date on the technology,
has a qualified IT staff and can
evaluate the right technology to use.
READER QUESTION: I am a security
director of a large company that uses 20
cameras to monitor our perimeter and
parking lot. I want to upgrade our old
security system that still uses analog
cameras and VCRs to collect video
data. I eventually want the system to
include IP cameras and NVRs; however,
we can’t afford to make that full transition
yet. Where should I start?
SOLUTION: This is a common issue for
customers who have existing systems
(usually with late-generation analog or
first-generation digital cameras) that they
need to future-proof by moving them to
third-generation digital platforms.
Most new high-quality DVR platforms
allow for hybrid connectivity, meaning
you can connect traditional analog cameras
via standard BNC connectors to capture
cards and add direct IP or PoEenabled
cameras directly through the network.
The Integral DS1000, RealView,
Pelco 8100 and Intivid VIP X systems,
among others, offer this capability.
The upgrade strategy for this type of
system consists of replacing the existing
VCR or first-generation DVR with a new
hybrid recorder. As the existing cameras
wear out, IP-based cameras can be
deployed and connected via network
cables to the new DVR. This strategy will
minimize the initial capital expenditure
and spread future investments out.
Once all of the existing analog cameras
are replaced, the DVR essentially becomes
an NVR as it is no longer directly connected
to any cameras. The products mentioned
above have remote management
software for both security and system
management that are easy to use and manage
bandwidth efficiently (a major aspect
of network-based systems).