Are Your Outdated Security Devices Falling Behind?

Sometimes security personnel unknowingly disconnect older devices like cameras from their network during security upgrades.

In the ever-changing landscape of modern information technology, there’s a possibility that many older generation IP-based security products are being “left behind” for reasons that are not complicated and can be easily corrected.

Without proper supervision, campuses and other end users often discover – unfortunately, but typically, after an incident – that devices such as cameras or alarm systems may have been disconnected from the network and have not been functioning as intended.

For example, an organization may have thousands of cameras on one or multiple properties running over their network. These devices may not have been viewed or inspected regularly, potentially resulting in systems failing without authorized knowledge.

Imagine losing hundreds of cameras during a normal network upgrade – and not being aware that the devices have been inadvertently disconnected and are no longer in service – only for the malfunction to be discovered when the cameras are eventually inspected or sensitive images are needed for investigative purposes.

Network Upgrade Issues Can Snowball
These service interruptions are often the result of miscommunication between IT and security personnel, whether it’s for scheduled network upgrades or updating user-access privileges, for example. In the majority of cases that have come to our attention, we discover a routine switch upgrade or software upgrade has taken place within the network and the IP-based security device did not come back online after the IT work was completed.

RELATED: Don’t Let Your IP Cameras Get Hacked

The good news is that the IT department is continuously seeking ways to provide safe and secure network access for all parts of your institution.

Another scenario that often goes undetected can occur when the IP camera, which may have been installed and put on the network five years ago, no longer works following an IT upgrade.

In simple terms, the IP cameras developed years ago were very rudimentary in terms of firmware and did not have the auto-configuration software options that today’s devices contain. This may impact the ability for the device to restore without manual intervention, often requiring a technician to be dispatched to reprogram the device manually. If the camera is mounted on a pole or building, requiring a lift to access the camera, the situation creates a greater expense and longer response time to restore service.

Chances are it won’t merely be one product that’s negatively impacted, and what started as a simple service ticket being issued for a five-year-old device not working may result in the replacement of hundreds of cameras no longer compatible with the newly deployed IT hardware. It’s a fact: older IP devices are becoming incapable of working with new switchgear being deployed to keep up with demand.

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