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Mexican prisons deploy 3VR's facial recognition technology


LAS VEGAS—Several prisons in the Mexican state of Guanajuato are using facial recognition software from 3VR to manage visitors and keep tabs on suspects who act as intermediaries between gang members behind bars.

3VR strengthens CrimeDex network


SAN FRANCISCO–3VR this week announced several partnerships that it hopes will expand its collaborative crime-fighting tool, CrimeDex.

The 'consultant's approach': How a bank director secured funding


WARRENTON, Va.—When Josh Brown joined Fauquier Bank as its director of security more than six years ago, he faced the challenge of managing two separate security systems. Half of the bank’s 10 branches were operating on an aging digital video surveillance platform and the other was still recording to VHS.

Getting smart about intelligent surveillance in retail


DELRAY BEACH, Fla.—Aisling MacRunnels, CMO of intelligent analytics and search solution provider 3VR, on Feb. 14 paired with Joe Davis, director, field retail loss prevention for T-Mobile, at the TechSec Solutions conference here, to explain how intelligent surveillance technologies can help reduce retail theft and improve customer service and sales.

3VR’s strategy for 2011


SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.—For intelligent analytics and search solution provider 3VR, the coming year “will be very much about the channel partners,” 3VR’s CMO Aisling MacRunnels told Security Director News on Dec. 27. And 3VR will use its recently closed $17 million round of funding to invest in its channel partnerships, as well as to expand its presence in certain vertical markets and grow globally.

Video search plus analytics equals 'almost real time' actionable intelligence


SAN FRANCISCO–3VR Security, a facial recognition and intelligent search solution provider, on Dec. 1 announced a partnership with High-Tech Solutions (HTS), a provider of license-plate recognition technology.

T-Mobile starts from the ground up to protect 2,100 stores


DALLAS—It was only three years ago that T-Mobile, the seventh largest cellular provider in the world, began its loss prevention efforts. And the company didn’t exactly start by taking baby steps.

Credit union lauds facial search application


MECHANICSBURG, Pa.—Does facial recognition technology work? For Chip McBreen, vice president of fraud and security services at Members 1st Federal Credit Union it does.

Is it possible to break the security cycle?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Normally, I have a lot of sympathy for security guards. I think many times they are the unsung heroes of security - the folks who are never paid enough, but are expected to save the day. They are the guys and gals out there making sure you and I are okay and if we're not, they know what to do. Unless, of course, their hands are tied by silly policies aimed to protect corporations or agencies from being sued. I understand liability. I talk to transit agencies regularly and one of their primary reasons for having video surveillance is to protect themselves from false claims just as much as it is to protect their patrons. Do you think forward-looking video cameras are to ensure that buses remain on the right route? No, it's to make sure that if the bus is involved in an accident, they have evidence about who's at fault and who has the right to sue. And while I think it's a sad testament to the world we live in, I'm okay with that kind of proactive security.

But, what happens when agencies take that fear of liability too far? The incident in Seattle where security guards stood there as a girl got beaten up is beyond disgraceful. And, in many ways, I'm sympathetic to the guards involved. Did they want to intervene? No one knows, but my guess would be yes. Very few of us choose to stand around and watch another human get hurt, knowing we can help. But, because the transit agency had a ridiculous, "observe and report" stipulation, these guards were restricted from intervening for fear of losing their jobs. And that's disgraceful. Disgraceful, especially, for the folks upstairs who make these policies.

But apparently that policy has been changed. Shocking, I know. According to this article: "Security guards in Seattle's bus tunnel now have the authority to break up a fight, or physically defend themselves." Great. I would say that's the public's definition of a security guard's duties. Glad those in charge are coming up to speed on this.

Seattle City Council met with Metro Police Chief Major Dave Jutilla, King County deputies and Seattle police to talk about the new security plan. "The focus really has been de-escalation of volatile situations, responding to hostile situations and give the security guards the basic skill to defend themselves,” Jutilla said.

As part of the new security plan, the tunnel guards working for Olympic Security Services will be given additional training and can step in to stop a fight or protect a bus rider.

Wow, so they can actually provide security? Really, that's monumental. What's so aggravating about this incident and the response it's garnered is that it's so typical: Something happens, everybody freaks out, a lot of money gets spent to fix the problem, and over time, when the public memory fades, those policies and solutions start going by the wayside, security budgets get cut again and likely the exact same vulnerabilities reappear. What will it take to break this security cycle?

Guard issues all over the news

Monday, October 19, 2009

A lot of talk about guards in the news lately. I just read this article that security guards at the Philadelphia Museum of Art have won their two-year long struggle to unionize.

Museum guards signed union authorization cards in November 2008, but couldn’t find a union willing to stand up to their employer—security industry giant AlliedBarton—to help them fight for recognition as a bargaining group. (Under the federal National Labor Relations Act, security guards are prevented from joining most labor unions.)

While guards  won the battle to unionize, they still have to negotiate a contract with their employer, AlliedBarton. I just put out a few calls to AlliedBarton to see what they have to say, but I think there's definitely a benefits for both sides to unionize. I'm sure guard companies would have to spend more money per guard in a union situation, but at the same time, it would likely lead to far less turnover and aid in professionalizing the industry as a whole, which would attract higher quality applicants, right? I'll let you know what they say.

And, because reality TV has no boundaries, a new show premiering on TLC will feature the life of mall security guards.

"Mall Cops: Mall of America" follows the daily routines of dozens of officers on the MOA's security force, following them as they respond to calls, provide security for celebrities and deal with the daily work of mall security.

Sounds exciting. The series premiers Thursday night at 9pm on TLC, and is scheduled to run through December. Too bad I still don't have cable.

This sorta reminds me of that DHS television series: “Homeland Security: USA” that debuted ran back in January.  I forget, how did that fare?