Born Into The Business
- By Ralph C. Jensen
- May 02, 2016
Like father, like son. Michael Riotto may not look old enough to
have been in the security business for more than 20 years, but he
has. Riotto along with his father, Joseph Riotto and Kenneth Durocher
created a new corporation in 1995 that began as Advanced
Video Surveillance, Inc. This eventually evolved into AVS Technology.
Like many integrators, AVS specializes in a unique market. Of course
they work in the real estate, healthcare, and government industry, but their
secret sauce, if you will, is their expertise in securing data centers.
About 10 years ago, based in Totowa, N.J., AVS began working with
various data centers. Michael said they enjoy creating security for a large
facilities with high tech equipment. When numerous data centers began
construction in Richardson, Texas, AVS opened a Texas office, and settled
in for the long haul.
“We pride ourselves on the ability to retain commercial and industrial
customers,” said Michael Riotto, who is the vice president at AVS. “We felt
that to work in this space, we would have to get out of the residential security
business 21 years ago. Back then, and I think we were the first, AVS
bought bucket trucks so we could be more efficient in installing security
Family owned and operated, AVS projects its annual revenue at about
$7-8 million annually. They continue to expand to other parts of the country,
including Texas and Virginia. Their staff of more than 35 people works
cohesively to benefit the company.
While AVS installs analog systems, their real strengths are IP installations.
Before an installation leaves the New Jersey office, employees set up it
up to ensure that they can support it, that all the pieces are compatible, and
everything works as specified.
Not long ago, AVS partnered with AMAG, Schlage and other well-known manufacturers, such as Axis, Vivotek, SightLogix, Bosch and Interlogix,
to upgrade the New Jersey Institute of Technology campus security
system. NJIT is located in Newark, but is also only 20 minutes from
downtown Manhattan, N.Y. AVS has been working at NJIT longer than two
decades, so they knew the current security systems and what would have to
happen to make the upgrade successful. Rolled out in four phases, the access
control function was replaced first. Campus security selected AMAG’s
Symmetry Access Control with video and encoders. This automated system
works well because it operates in real time, where officers can get the information
they need to quickly and accurately respond to situations.
“In a university environment, we know security is critical,” Michael Riotto
said. “To accommodate the campus environment, we performed the
upgrade installation work during semester and summer breaks, and even
over holiday breaks, making it seamless for students who didn’t even realize
a security upgrade was occurring.”
NJIT went a step further by upgrading the security systems, photo ID,
and parking services to better secure the campus. Michael Riotto’s choice
of Symmetry manages the security system, creates badges, and fulfills distribution
by assigning card access rights for students, faculty and staff. The
system also is responsible for contractor card distribution, security installation,
as well as upgrades and training.
Just as technology is changing security needs, the demands for a security
director may be coming to a close as well. Joseph said the day of the security
director is evolving.
Currently, security is being managed through IT, and the director’s position
may be better defined as a security system manager.
“I think everyone knows this, but what we have seen is the IP camera,
such as the 180 degree, 360 degree, and high resolution cameras do so much
more,” Michael Riotto said. “There is higher resolution and more detail in
the images. All the cameras are on the network with a fiber backbone.”
As the integrator, AVS works hand in hand with the end user, and they
offer suggestions and advice for the proper equipment for today, and well
into the future. Joseph Riotto said they want to offer their customers something
they won’t have to change every couple of years.
“Some of our favorite installs include those where the end user wants
to be involved; people that we know well,” both Michael Riotto and Joseph
Riotto said. “All of us at the AVS office enjoy the challenges of bringing a
system together. The challenge makes it all worth it.”
Part of the challenge of installing a security system is providing technical
support following the install, but Michael Riotto said he and his staff
might enjoy this more than anything. He loves inspiring people to get the
most of their security system.
“We take a lot of pride in our staff,” he said. “Our technicians are fiber
optic certified, and AVS has teams oriented for certain proficiencies. They
are trained to specialize in all of the systems and equipment that AVS installs.
We are team oriented and trained.”
Telx, recently became a part of Digital Realty’s Colocation and Connectivity
line of business, fuels infrastructure, interconnection and business
progress. With industry- leading 100 percent uptime and 100 percent ontime
service delivery SLAs, Telx helps companies build more agile businesses
faster with reduced infrastructure complexity and broader reach to new
markets. Telx colocation and connectivity products serve a broad range of
industries from network dense Internet/Cloud Gateway data centers located
across 13 US markets: Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami,
New Jersey, New York, Phoenix, Portland, San Francisco, Santa Clara,
and Seattle. With more than 50,000 network connections, Telx enables the
hybrid cloud strategies of our customers, and the interconnection of more
than 10 million square feet of data center space around the world.
Implementing security in these
data centers was no small task. This
is a complex work environment due
to government imposed regulatory
standards and operational standards
created a challenge. The second
challenge, according to John
Matis, Telx director of security, was
to find an integrator who understood
the critical demands of Telx’s
complicated working environment
and regulatory requirement, yet
also held a keen working knowledge
of the software systems necessary
to match up with the hardware
Upon the recommendation of
AVS, Matis selected Salient System’s
CompleteView VMS and a PowerUltra
NVR servers to integrate
with Symmetry Enterprise access
control. The VMS allows Matis and
his team to perform routine surveillance
and ensure proper movement
of assets through its data centers.
At each of these locations, a
concentric circle model throughout
the facility would surround each
client’s assets, doubling down on
security. The VMS is transmitted
through Symmetry Access Control
system, so the security team can
monitor all activity.
“Guards monitor the system
locally from every site; they watch
live activity and cameras to verify
people do not enter restricted areas
or tamper with other customer’s
equipment,” Michael Riotto said.
The history of AVS is one of stellar
service, and responding to a service
call within four hours. Since its
inception in 1995, Advanced Video
Surveillance has created a reputation
forproviding superior system design,
installation, and service. With years
of experience and numerous certifications,
the company’s staff possesses
the skills to provide customers
with a comprehensive security solution
that not only meets their needs,
but their budget.
AVS Technology has primary
coverage area includes Connecticut,
New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania,
Texas, and Virginia providing
same day service with every effort
made for a four-hour response. The
company has branch offices in Richardson,
Texas and Sterling, Va., providing
coverage for the Texas and
Virginia areas. AVS also installs and
services sites in Arizona, Maryland,
Massachusetts, and Missouri with
scheduled installation or service,
through strategic partnerships. AVS
has a fleet of service vehicles, consisting
of service vans and bucket
trucks that are dispatched from the
appropriate office. After hours service
is always available to contract
customers. All locations stock a
wide variety of inventory to repair
or replace a defective component
the same day.
This article originally appeared in the May 2016 issue of Security Today.