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May 6, 2021

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Video analytics

Majority of firms believe video analytics can support the safe return of staff to the workplace

The findings of a survey from Video Surveillance as a Service provider, Ava Security, highlighted the important role many building owners and facility managers believe existing video systems can play in the safe return of employees to offices.

Particularly in the UK, as lockdown restrictions continue to loosen, 71% of firms of over 50 employees saw a role for their existing video system in supporting the return to the workplace.

Of this 71%, almost half had already deployed video analytics to help manage social distancing, while another third plan to start managing social distancing using video systems within the next 12 months. Similar numbers were found in those using video cameras to help track and trace movements in and around workplaces, alongside monitoring meeting room and break out area occupancy levels.

Facial recognition and thermal adoption slower in the UK

However, UK firms are not yet major adopters of in-camera facial recognition software to enable contactless access control. Only 13% of firms had chosen this option to reduce infection risks associated with entering and exiting a building. A further 21% were planning to deploy facial recognition analytics within the next 12 months, indicating that deployment of facial recognition inside workplaces is set to grow in 2021.

Adoption here contrasts with much more rapid take-up of facial recognition in the US, where 39% had already deployed it and 45% planned to do so within the next 12 months, according to the survey.

UK deployment of thermal cameras to support temperature measurement-based screening at entrances, was also quite low when compared with the US. Just 15% of UK firms have already deployed thermal cameras for temperature checking and 34% said they were likely to deploy them within the next 12 months. By contrast, over half of US firms (51%) have already deployed thermal cameras for this purpose and an additional third (34%) plan to do so within the next 12 months.

One in five UK firms running video monitoring systems had experienced a significant reduction in budget available for updating and improving their existing video monitoring systems during 2020 and a further third had seen a small security budget decrease last year.

Video analytics and integration with other security systems spotlighted

Nearly half (47%) of UK firms questioned considered it high priority to reduce false alarms ‘dramatically as this is consuming too much of our time’. Linked to this, just over half (52%) were focused on making their video system ‘more intelligent, using video analytics to support better post-event decision-making.’

Over two thirds (71%) of UK firms considered that integration of their CCTV systems ‘better with other security-related systems, such as access control or alarm systems’ to be net high priority. 69% gave net high priority status to ‘finding and retrieving required footage of incidents easier and quicker’.

VSaaS adoption linked to wider IT Service Cloud Migration Trend

Over half considered ‘adopting VSaaS’ a high priority for improving or optimising their CCTV or video monitoring system. Linked to this, three-quarters of UK firms thought it likely that within the next 12 months the impact of the pandemic would accelerate the ‘migration of IT applications into the cloud’. Indeed, over a quarter (27%) of UK firms have already received new budget for moving more services into the cloud in the current financial year 2020/21.

However, wider budget pressures associated with the pandemic also appear to have accelerated the ‘move from CAPEX (capital expenditure) to OPEX (operational expenditure) spending in more aspects of IT spend’: 43% of UK firms and 81% of US firms thought this increasing focus on OPEX which favours Cloud migration, is ‘net’ likely over the next 12 months.

Vegard Aas, Head of Online Business at Ava Security, commented: “Our findings indicate that plans for keeping workplaces safe following the COVID-19 pandemic, combined with improvements in video analytics and the maturing cloud infrastructure landscape, are all working together to make VSaaS a genuine consideration for many more UK businesses.”

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DEREK TRIMBLE
DEREK TRIMBLE
May 11, 2021 1:45 pm

Thermal Detection does not catch asymptomatic carriers of the COVID-19 virus. This is with a mix of people which normally make up between 20% and 35% of the population… that is not a good pre-indicator of success. Rather it gives a false sense of security.