This is the eight article in the award-winning “Real Words or Buzzwords?” series about how real words become empty words and stifle technology progress, also published on SecurityInfoWatch.com.
By Ray Bernard, PSP, CHS-III
A combination of technology trends have converged to redefine what it means to have a true enterprise security system.
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Real Words or Buzzwords?
The Award-Winning Article Series
#1 Proof of the buzzword that killed tech advances in the security industry—but not other industries.
#2 Next Generation (NextGen): A sure way to tell hype from reality.
#3 Customer Centric: Why all security industry companies aren't customer centric.
#4 Best of Breed: What it should mean to companies and their customers.
#5 Open: An openness scale to rate platforms and systems
#6 Network-friendly: It's much more than network connectivity.
#7 Mobile first: Not what it sounds like.
#8 Enterprise Class (Part One): To qualify as Enterprise Class system today is world's beyond what it was yesterday.
#9 Enterprise Class (Part Two): Enterprise Class must be more than just a top-level label.
#10 Enterprise Class (Part Three): Enterprise Class must be 21st century technology.
#11 Intuitive: It’s about time that we had a real-world testable definition for “intuitive”.
#12 State of the Art: A perspective for right-setting our own thinking about technologies.
#13 True Cloud (Part One): Fully evaluating cloud product offerings.
#14 True Cloud (Part Two): Examining the characteristics of 'native-cloud' applications.
#15 True Cloud (Part Three): Due diligence in testing cloud systems.
#16 IP-based, IP-enabled, IP-capable, or IP-connectable?: A perspective for right-setting our own thinking about technologies.
#17 Five Nines: Many people equate high availability with good user experience, yet many more factors are critically important.
#18 Robust: Words like “robust” must be followed by design specifics to be meaningful.
#19 Serverless Computing – Part 1: Why "serverless computing" is critical for some cloud offerings.
#20 Serverless Computing – Part 2: Why full virtualization is the future of cloud computing.
#21 Situational Awareness – Part 1: What products provide situational awareness?
#22 Situational Awareness – Part 2: Why system designs are incomplete without situational awareness?
#23 Situational Awareness – Part 3: How mobile devices change the situational awareness landscape?
#24 Situational Awareness – Part 4: Why situational awareness is a must for security system maintenance and acceptable uptime.
#25 Situational Awareness – Part 5: We are now entering the era of smart buildings and facilities. We must design integrated security systems that are much smarter than those we have designed in the past.
#26 Situational Awareness – Part 6: Developing modern day situational awareness solutions requires moving beyond 20th century thinking.
#27 Situational Awareness – Part 7: Modern day incident response deserves the help that modern technology can provide but doesn’t yet. Filling this void is one of the great security industry opportunities of our time.
#28 Unicity: Security solutions providers can spur innovation by envisioning how the Unicity concept can extend and strengthen physical access into real-time presence management.
#29 The API Economy: Why The API Economy will have a significant impact on the physical security industry moving forward.
#31 The Built Environment: In the 21st century, “the built environment” means so much more than it did just two decades ago.
#32 Hyper-Converged Infrastructure: Hyper-Converged Infrastructure has been a hot phrase in IT for several years, but do its promises hold true for the physical security industry?
#33 Software-Defined: Cloud-computing technology, with its many software-defined elements, is bringing self-scaling real-time performance capabilities to physical security system technology.
#34 High-Performance: How the right use of "high-performance" can accelerate the adoption of truly high-performing emerging technologies.
#35 Erasure Coding: Why RAID drive arrays don’t work anymore for video storage, and why Erasure Coding does.
#36 Presence Control: Anyone responsible for access control management or smart building experience must understand and apply presence control.
#37 Internet+: The Internet has evolved into much more than the information superhighway it was originally conceived to be.
#38 Digital Twin: Though few in physical security are familiar with the concept, it holds enormous potential for the industry.
#39 Fog Computing: Though commonly misunderstood, the concept of fog computing has become critically important to physical security systems.
#40 Scale - Part 1: Although many security-industry thought leaders have advocated that we should be “learning from IT,” there is still insufficient emphasis on learning about IT practices, especially for large-scale deployments.
#41 Scale - Part 2: Why the industry has yet to fully grasp what the ‘Internet of Things’ means for scaling physical security devices and systems.
#42 Cyberspace - Part 1: Thought to be an outdated term by some, understanding ‘Cyberspace’ and how it differs from ‘Cyber’ is paramount for security practitioners.
#43 Cyber-Physical Systems - Part 1: We must understand what it means that electronic physical security systems are cyber-physical systems.
#44 Cyberspace - Part 2: Thought to be an outdated term by some, understanding ‘Cyberspace’ and how it differs from ‘Cyber’ is paramount for security practitioners.
#45 Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Deep Learning: Examining the differences in these technologies and their respective benefits for the security industry.
#46 VDI – Virtual Desktop Infrastructure: At first glance, VDI doesn’t seem to have much application to a SOC deployment. But a closer look reveals why it is actually of critical importance.
#47 Hybrid Cloud: The definition of hybrid cloud has evolved, and it’s important to understand the implications for physical security system deployments.
#48 Legacy: How you define ‘legacy technology’ may determine whether you get to update or replace critical systems.
#49 H.264 - Part 1: Examining the terms involved in camera stream configuration settings and why they are important.
#50 H.264 - Part 2: A look at the different H.264 video frame types and how they relate to intended uses of video.
#51 H.264 - Part 3: Once seen as just a marketing term, ‘smart codecs’ have revolutionized video compression.
#52 Presence Technologies: The proliferation of IoT sensors and devices, plus the current impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, have elevated the capabilities and the importance of presence technologies.
#53 Anonymization, Encryption and Governance: The exponential advance of information technologies requires an exponential advance in the application of data protection.
#54 Computer Vision: Why a good understanding of the computer vision concept is important for evaluating today’s security video analytics products.
#55 55 Exponential Technology Advancement: The next 10 years of security technology will bring more change than in the entire history of the industry to now.
More to come about every other week.
I’ve been wanting to write about “Enterprise Class” for some time now. Enterprise Class, Future Proof/Future Proofing and Open are the most-requested topics for me to address in Real Words and Buzzwords? By the way, you can go here to suggest a term or phrase for Real Words and Buzzwords?Almost two years ago, security industry veteran Perry Levine, now Director of Strategic Alliances for BCDVideo, wrote a short LinkedIn article titled, “If You are Not Cloud, You are Not Enterprise”. Levine wrote that what used to be considered an “Enterprise System” for physical security system applications “had changed”, which is quite an understatement. Levine also listed five of the new requirements:
- A Real Time Web Interface
- 100% Mobile Device Functionality
- Access from Anywhere, Anytime on Any Device
- Data and Cyber Security Protection
- Redundancy and High Availability
He also referenced a good phrase coined by BluBØX, “Enterprise at any size.”
“Enterprise at any size” is a clever way of expressing the concept that no matter what size of system or organization you have, you get enterprise-class features at your level of subscription price. “Enterprise at any size” is made possible by several important technology trends:
- Cloud computing
Information technology advances used to arrive last in physical security industry products as the third stage of the technology development. For decades, after an advanced information technology was developed, it would appear first in business products, next in consumer products, and finally in security industry products. This constituted a 3- to 5-year lag in the information technology being available for electronic physical security systems. The consumerization trend has permanently changed that picture.
According to Gartner’s IT Glossary: Consumerization is the specific impact that consumer-originated technologies can have on enterprises. It reflects how enterprises will be affected by, and can take advantage of, new technologies and models that originate and develop in the consumer space, rather than in the enterprise IT sector. Consumerization is not a strategy or something to be “adopted.” Consumerization can be embraced and it must be dealt with, but it cannot be stopped.
This means information technology advances can now be incorporated into electronic security products and systems, at the same time as they begin appearing in businesses. The 3- to 5-year lag is no longer necessary for many technologies. For example, formerly very pricey security technology, such as custom-built high-resolution security monitors, are now replaced by affordable consumer technology you can get, for example, at Best Buy or Amazon. 4K video cameras first appeared as consumer products, and then very quickly the technology was adapted for security camera use.
The consumerization trend is playing a big role in making security system technology more affordable, and at the same time easier to use (a consumer technology requirement). This supports rationale behind Canon—a consumer camera manufacturer—acquiring two security industry companies: Axis Communications (cameras) and Milestone Systems (video recording).
This trend makes perfect sense of the actions by Canon—a consumer camera manufacturer—in acquiring two security industry companies: Axis Communications (cameras) and Milestone Systems (video recording). The consumerization trend is playing a big role in making security system technology more affordable, and at the same time easier to use (a consumer technology requirement).
Digitalization is the integration of digital technologies into everyday life by the conversion of analog information into digital forms. One of the many results of digitalization is that everything can go over local networks and the Internet, making the use of cloud-bases security applications feasible, resulting in “anywhere, anytime, on any device” capabilities.
Information technology standards are what make integration between security applications and business systems practical, especially for cloud-based applications.
Affordable access to high-power computer processing and global networking is made possible by cloud computing, and is the basis for high-performance real time web interfaces, mobile device connectivity, redundancy and high availability for cloud-based systems, Strong data and cyber-security protection are more affordable in a cloud computing environment.
The Full Scope of Enterprise Class
This article presents just a few of the many important requirements of Enterprise Class security systems technology. Part Two will present more of the picture, and delve deeper into the aspects of Enterprise Class that are fast becoming the key differentiators between true Enterprise Class offerings that those that are just wearing the label. Part Three will follow with a checklist that integrators, specifiers and end users can use to evaluate and compare offerings that are labeled “Enterprise Class”.
Ray Bernard, PSP CHS-III, is the principal consultant for Ray Bernard Consulting Services (RBCS), a firm that provides security consulting services for public and private facilities (www.go-rbcs.com). He is the author of the Elsevier book Security Technology Convergence Insights available on Amazon. Mr. Bernard is a Subject Matter Expert Faculty of the Security Executive Council (SEC) and an active member of the ASIS International member councils for Physical Security and IT Security.