Surveillance Success

Surveillance Success

Ottawa University teams up on IP video solution

Ottawa University, in Ottawa, Kansas, has a rich heritage. Since 1865, the university has educated its students. Many people rely on Ottawa University to help them achieve a lifetime of personal growth and significance.

The faculty and staff at the university are also charged with the responsibility of keeping students safe. Ottawa University’s three residence halls become home to students who are living away from their families while attending the college.

An End to Analog

Somewhat ahead of its time, Ottawa University installed analog video cameras in its residence halls about 10 years ago. The number of cameras and available technology were limited.

“We really didn’t have enough cameras,” said Tom Taldo, dean of student affairs, “and the camera placement wasn’t good. But, our biggest problem was you couldn’t make out any faces from the video images. The recordings were practically useless.”

The university has a long-standing relationship with the security integrator, Midwest Card and ID Solutions. Gary Williams, a Midwest sales engineer, met with Taldo to discuss options to upgrade their video surveillance system. Williams introduced Taldo to LENSEC IP video management software and to IQinVision megapixel camera technology.

“We wanted an IP-based system with crisp image resolution,” Williams said. “We wanted a cost-effective system for indoor and outdoor surveillance. Gary Williams and Mike Brimmer from LENSEC showed me a system that meets my needs.”

Rolling Out IP Video Surveillance

Phase one of Ottawa’s plans calls for IQeye Alliance dome cameras to be installed in the new university’s new student union. All cameras will be managed by LENSEC’s Perspective VMS and monitored by security personnel.

Phase two will see additional IQeye cameras installed at the student center library. In all, more than 50 cameras and servers running Perspective VMS will be deployed in this project.

“The new system is much more user friendly,” Taldo said. “We are able to stop and review the video, we email video clips, and the quality and clarity of the images doesn’t even compare—we are able to make out exactly who is in the frame. Also, not everyone who touches this system needs to be considered an IT expert. I really appreciate the minimal training needed to run this software effectively.”

In addition, LENSEC provides a browserbased solution that displays quality video whether the user has a Mac or a PC. In an education environment, that is useful.

Solving Problems, Creating a Safer Environment

“We’ve had a few theft issues,” Taldo said, “especially at the end of the semester when electronics are stolen. The new system, with its capabilities and image clarity, is helping us solve many of those incidents.”

The university also has plans to expand video surveillance outdoors.

“We’ve had some of bike thefts,” Taldo said. “The students are going to be pleased when we protect the bike racks and reduce problems.”

Continued System Expansion

Midwest Card, LENSEC, IQinVision and Ottawa University are drawing up expansion plans to install video surveillance throughout the entire campus. When completed, the system will have hundreds of cameras inside buildings and monitoring grounds.

Taldo hopes to extend IP video surveillance to several remote Ottawa campuses located in Arizona, Wisconsin, Indiana, and in Kansas City. LENSEC and IQinVision intend to tie campuses together across the network for a seamless solution providing remote video streaming among the campuses.

“Everybody has really enjoyed the quality of this new system, including our Information Technology team. Our IT team has fully embraced LENSEC & IQinVision and are excited to help continue to lay the foundation for future expansion across all of our Ottawa University locations,” Taldo said.

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

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