Laura Stepanek: We talked about important current technologies. Let’s also look at future technologies. Let’s take a look at what you see that may play an important role in the protection of people and assets.

Bill Zalud: Or maybe even a wish list of what you would like to see.

John Sutton: I would, at this moment, probably lean towards sophistication and further enhancement of positive ID. That through the use of biometrics, through the use of various other electronic means – and personal identification being high on the list when I think about securing our many, many different areas – the facilities that we occupy.

It’s become quite a challenge and this is not only within our own facilities, but positive ID as you pass through an airport or through any place that requires some sort of identification check. It becomes important to know who you are and what business you have being there associated with being who you are.

Thomas Wojciechowski: From our point of view, the technology’s going to keep enhancing. I look for the future for the different government-sponsored security programs to be enhanced even more and evolve even better over the next couple years. We watched the TWIC program come in. We watched the C-TPAT.

We’re watching the Canadian Partners in Protection.

The best way to put it is we are in a world economy in that different countries are going to be joining, writing their own programs, enhancing and then possibly one day… when you ask for a wish list, I guess for all of them to come together for one program, so the requirements or the guidelines aren’t different from different country to different country.

Bill Zalud: That would be an excellent consolidation.

Bernie Jacobs: I would like to see a concentration of government money put into facial recognition enhancement, because when you’re dealing with the humongous volumes of people that most of our clients deal with, identification via a mag stripe card or a photo image or whatever, it just doesn’t work. It slows the process down too greatly. Facial recognition carried to the extreme would be an excellent, excellent tool for us and would greatly enhance the security potential at a lot of our facilities.

Jim Henry: I think the new catch phase, which is kind of a synonym to interoperability, is the term “situational awareness.” That really has taken on some steam here in the last year, year-and-a-half. It really points to the functional viability of being able to make intelligent decisions from a lot of triangulated information – that you’re using the computing power of the edge devices and the processors to enable the human element to make faster, more intelligent decisions. That’s really where the whole industry is driving.

At the end of the day it’s not about which card reader has the slickest feature set or which individual biometric technology or which camera has the greatest level of resolution to detail at 1,000 feet.

You have to pull all that information in, triangulate it, overlay it and then have a fairly complex processing, a crunching of that information to provide that situational awareness to the end users so they can make informed decisions. We’re seeing a lot of advancements in systems that are providing those kinds of fusion engines to triangulate that.

Laura Stepanek: We’re seeing a lot of cities deploying situational awareness.

Jim Henry: That’s correct.

Laura Stepanek:
Rob, what is on your wish list for future technologies?

Rob Hile: I agree 100 percent with what Jim said. Open standards and interoperability in the security industry is our No. 1 – my No. 1 – wish list. The use of CCTV cameras is expanding. The video analytics engines are getting stronger. Situation awareness, situation management is here. Look at the passenger-screening devices with millimeter wave and backscatter computer tomography and enhanced trace detection. RFID tagging is being expanded and GPS tracking. Now we’ve got DNA spray for cargo seals.

Another area that we’re looking at, because we’re doing some things internationally, is bioscience technology. We’re taking a hard look at brain waves and different non-evasive sensors that are measuring facial expressions and heart rate. The sensors are becoming more geospatially aware; they’re almost intelligent.

The bottom line is every sensor needs to work together to identify a threat before the threat becomes reality. And the only way to do that is to have an open standard of communication, interoperability in industry. We need it; our customers are demanding it and it’s a must. We have to have it.

Bill Zalud: But that’s going to be the biggest challenge, don’t you think? If we have really open standards then why do we need 55 access control companies and 120 camera companies?

Rob Hile: I can answer that on a high level, but I agree with what you’re saying. I think that the bottom line is interoperability is going to give us the ability to communicate across a network at a data level. But when you’re talking about the features and benefits, you still might need some different cameras. You’re going to have those manufacturers that are going to offer it better in low light. You’re going to have some at 35x versus, 23x or whatever.

When I’m talking about inoperability – and I’m keeping it very simple because these manufacturers are beating us up every day over this – let’s communicate at a data level. What you guys do at the binding levels I’m okay with because that’s why I’m an integrator.