- January 7, 2019
- Posted by: admin
- Category: Security
The adoption of technology within security operations is table stakes, and the use of equipment like IP cameras is a practice that is synonymous with surveillance. Since the introduction of this type of equipment dates back more than 20 years, however, security professionals are quickly realizing that their use of technology must consider new threats and advancements in today’s workplace. Innovations in machine learning, computer vision, and robotics are expected to have a profound impact across multiple product categories in security operations.
Corporations are faced with a growing need to address security threats across the organization and are finding a greater need for strategic personnel. As security teams become more focused, replacements are sought for the repeatable tasks of detecting and monitoring. Technology solutions are increasingly more capable of meeting these replacement needs.
Robotics for Security
Robots can help track both people and assets, and act as a force multiplier enabling one security guard to gain visibility into many areas at a time. This visibility, combined with the enhancement of issue prevention and operational efficiency, makes robotics one of the most compelling technologies today for the security industry.
Autonomous robots also have the ability to detect problems that may not be noticed by a human and using remote two-way audio and video chatting capabilities, can allow one person to monitor and respond to events in real-time, in multiple locations at once. Security robots can be leveraged to patrol and continuously scan a pre-defined area to detect anomalies, such as a person on premises after hours, an open door, an asset that has been removed from an area, or a leak or spill.
One of the biggest benefits of security robots is that they can help corporate security directors amplify their security program by providing additional coverage after hours and on weekends. Within the next five to 10 years, it’s predicted that security robots will be a common tool for security professionals. As the scale and use of security robots increases, costs will decrease and capabilities will continue to improve.
Drones Led the Way For Robotics
Drone technology was introduced in the early 2000s and paved the way for the use of robotics in security today. At the time of their introduction, unarmed drones flew over hostile territories in the Middle East. Use by the military naturally led to use by municipalities for fire and police. Today drones are more autonomous and accessible to both hobbyists and enterprise. Security integrators leverage the technology to assist with site surveys and corporate security directors have deployed drones to remotely monitor larger perimeters.
Aerial drones are being used to identify the proper location for camera placement — a more maneuverable, less costly and less time-consuming system than the familiar bucket truck. In addition, drone technology has provided valuable site survey information. A picture taken from an aerial drone can immediately show exactly what angles and points of view would be captured by a surveillance camera if it were installed in that location.
Corporate security directors are incorporating drones as part of their security programs to monitor remote parking lots, protect large infrastructure such as wind farms, and monitor sports events and concerts. This technology is proving its value because it enables security professionals to access information quickly and doesn’t hinge upon the presence of an existing installed surveillance system, which often proves too costly to deploy in remote or expansive areas.
The Shift Has Already Begun
Security robots and drones support innovation and adaptability, providing security practitioners with the unique opportunity to enhance programs by using leading-edge technology. Time will tell how the industry will fully leverage them. In the meantime, early adopters will have gained experience and deeper understanding of their potential and will be better positioned to not only choose from an expanding range of products and services but also to drive advancements by making informed demands for the next generation of features.
Dr. Travis Deyle is the founder and CEO of Cobalt Robotics, a company building indoor robots for physical security, facilities, and HR applications.