Tim Compston, Features Editor at Security News Desk and SecurityMiddleEast.com, sits down with security industry experts to find out their predictions for the year ahead.
Reflecting on the video surveillance market for 2017 - including cameras - Jon Cropley, Principal Market Analyst at IHS Markit, forecasts a worldwide growth rate of 7.4 percent: "Demand is very robust for the cameras themselves but at the same time average prices are going down for cameras and related equipment at a very fast rate. This price erosion means that overall revenue growth is not as high as it might otherwise be," explains Cropley
A Wider View
In terms of the direction of travel of the market, Jeff Whitney, VP Marketing at Arecont Vision, reckons that competition is heating up as vendors rush to secure a slice of the lucrative multi-sensor camera pie: "Until about a year ago, Arecont Vision was virtually alone in the multi-sensor megapixel camera market. We now see multiple copies and clones of SurroundVideo G5 (180 and 360 degree) and Omni G2 (omnidirectional) from a range of vendors. We believe that other vendors have finally awakened to the potential of multi-sensor cameras to reduce cost and improve video, and that 2017 will see further use of this technology that Arecont Vision continues to lead."
Cyberattacks on Cameras
For his part, Martin Gren, Co-founder of Axis Communications and the company's Director of New Projects, predicts that a key headache for 2017 is going to be the cybersecurity of cameras if they are not set-up correctly: "If we look at video surveillance cameras they are now IP based and they are an intelligent network node. We’ve seen attacks initiated through network cameras that brought down key services. This is a result of cheap and inferior IP cameras and DVRs." Ultimately, Gren warns that, as a video camera is effectively a network node, it is important to apply the same security measures as you would for any other IT device.
The heightened cybersecurity threat also remains top of the agenda for Marcus Kneen, CEO at IndigoVision: “One of the big themes for me in 2017 is can the owners of cameras trust their cameras? Can cameras communicate to others beyond who they are meant to be communicating with? You may have the stream coming to your NVR but is that the only communication to the world it is making or has it gone another route?”
Moving on to Mark Patrick, Group CTO at Digital Barriers - following a recent contract win with the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for the standoff detection of objects such as weapons and explosives concealed under clothing - he believes that there will be a wider push in 2017 to extend a security presence further out from the central asset being protected: “If you think of an onion of security around critical infrastructure, like an airport, we are going to see more and more security checks being performed in the outer layer.”
Hostile Vehicle Challenges
Considering what is likely to be driving the hostile vehicle mitigation market in 2017, Gavin Hepburn, Sales and Marketing Director at ATG Access, points to the smaller, non-coordinated attacks that seem to be gaining momentum: "These generally involve vehicles targeting crowded places with the aim of maiming or killing large numbers of people."
Hepburn feels that many temporary events will move to review and increase their security following the recent, and tragic, targeted attacks in both Germany and France: "Events which should be reviewed include crowded places within music festivals, city festivals, popular events, parades and political rallies for example."
He goes on to acknowledge that vehicle barrier suppliers, like ATG Access, must continue to adapt to the changing face of this terrorist threat and provide innovations which best protect the areas of risk, and the public, whilst, crucially, ensuring that sites remain operational and, in his words, 'not a fortress’
Dialling In To Access Control
Opening the door on what is trending for access control applications, John Davies, Managing Director and Owner at TDSi, offers his insight into the role of smartphones: “A couple of years ago, everyone was screaming and shouting about NFC [Near Field Communication] and NFC readers and smartphones replacing cards. That is still valid but I think what we have found this year - and it is going to come to the fore next year - is that rather than using NFC as a reader technology there is Bluetooth Low Energy [BLE] – that is either in a physical reader that is by a door or there are products out there using BLE readers within the lock sets themselves.”
Turning to Thomas Schulz, Director Marketing and Communications – Digital Access Solutions - EMEA at ASSA ABLOY, he is keen to flag-up a major shift from wired to wireless access control which should continue into 2017: “Evidence for the market’s move to wireless includes some of our own research which found 29 percent of premises using a wireless or hybrid wired/wireless access control system, with 5 percent of premises already fully wireless.”
To round things off, in the view of James Somerville-Smith, Northern Europe Channel Marketing Leader at Honeywell Security and Fire, the biggest theme for the security and fire market in 2017 is going to be integration. He is an enthusiastic advocate of the rewards to be gained here: "By combining different kinds of systems together, we can provide end users with considerable benefits that are greater than the sum of their parts. An entirely connected infrastructure is especially useful for large enterprises, with many staff, contractors, and visitors to track. By integrating security with HR and payroll systems, for example, an employee's access rights can be automatically stopped as soon as they leave the company," concludes Somerville-Smith.
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