Exploring Video Verification’s Many Benefits

Even people currently using video verification may not understand all of its possible functions.

Video verification has become a powerful tool in the arsenal to prevent false alarms and fortify security at the protected premises. For physical security, it bolsters traditional intrusion detection applications by adding visual identification to the equation. Now, there are new ways to deploy the technology that further enhances its value.

Adding value beyond intrusion events
Video can do more than verify intrusion. Video verification links alarm, access control or other events to cameras. It provides business and operational information that enhances productivity and operations. It’s flexible and comes in different ‘flavors’ or levels of use which can be custom-tailored to the end users and their facility. And, cloud-hosted platforms that manage video verification continue to yield new ways to leverage surveillance for activities that range from safety to daily business processes and procedures.

Cloud-hosted security management platforms enable video snapshots from multiple customers and multiple locations to be located in one database where it’s easier for the end user, integrator or responding authorities to assess and manage activity. It’s simple to access and find out who’s been coming into a facility – or saying they’ve come in when it’s actually been a different person at the location. Users can type in the name of a person and view video snapshots and activity of that person every time they entered or left the business or office – allowing management to keep tabs on workers and any ‘exceptions’ that may have occurred, such as internal theft.

Users can also receive text messages automatically when video verifies that a particular user is coming into the building. Or perhaps that person went into the supply or the tool room and borrowed someone else’s access control credentials to gain entrance. In this case, management would have visual identification that another employee was using someone else’s card to gain access.

Accountability and control
In this instance and more, video verification offers management the ability to know ‘who went where.’ Activity, an event or a motion detector can trigger cameras and send a clip or series of clips to the user – pre- and post-event video. Video verification offers simple-to-configure rules to capture video from multiple cameras per event. It features live event plus video viewing onscreen and the ability to send those images via email/text message to users or responsible parties. Cloud-hosted interfaces also offer the ability to view recorded snapshots concurrently with live video, through generated reports and via email when the event occurred.

Video can verify rules, regulations and expectations of employees. At one fast food restaurant, the back door was off limits after dark because when opened, it put the nearby office at risk from robbery, intruders or possible takeovers. A simple magnetic contact switch was configured at the door. When the magnetic switch opened, it sent a text message to the district manager who was alerted to the situation, but employees continued to deny they had opened the door. Now, with video triggered upon contact closure, when the door opens a video snapshot is relayed to the district manager, who can verify rule violators.

Other perks of cloud-hosted video verification include:

  • Snapshots are acquired and stored in the cloud at the time of the event with flexible storage options.
  • The event plus video can be viewed onscreen and also sent via email and SMS text message.
  • Snapshot capture and live viewing works with compatible DVR, NVR and IP cameras.
  • Customers can retrieve about 10 seconds pre-event and 45 seconds post-event all from the same screen without needing to log in.
  • Depending on the security management platform, customers or central command centers have the ability to view live video on the same screens as security and access information. Pop out options open the camera view in a new window that can be placed anywhere on the desktop.

Of course, let’s not forget how video verification provides the necessary visual evidence and confirmation of an alarm sometimes required before responding authorities are dispatched. This technology can verify intrusion at the protected premises, and even deliver instant video snapshots real time to users or law enforcement responders.

Mike Simon is the managing partner of Connected Technologies, LLC, Crystal Lake, Ill., a company he started after selling his long-running systems integration business in the Chicago area. Mike and his son Dan are the originators of Connect ONE®, a security management solution company.

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