Go to any security trade show lately, and you’ll see them in the exhibit hall: rows upon rows of security technologies available for venues, stadiums, health care facilities, schools, and workplaces. These range from access control gates, to video management systems, to surveillance camera analytics, to gunshot detectors, to mass notification and communication technologies and more: the list goes on and on.
The last tradeshow I went to had a robotic dog. And yes, that is just as compelling (and cute) as it sounds, but the range of available technologies for venue security and operations always makes me wonder: how does amassing a vast network of seemingly disparate tools help a security team work in lockstep across them to ensure the safety of their guests and employees?
To be fair, two or more such technologies (robotic dogs notwithstanding) are often integrated together into a single solution. These integrations are vital to ensure that, when a threat actor is apprehended somewhere across your venue or facility, the rest of your team knows about it. In response, the system of people, processes and technologies all kick into gear—automating the safekeeping of your guests and employees.
Integrating Weapons Detection at Ingress
The most notable technology missing these vital integrations? Traditional metal detectors. Despite their location at the all-important front entryway to many venues, these purely analog devices (walk through metal detectors and hand wands included) can detect metal items including guns, knives, and IEDs—but who else can learn about what they’ve found, besides the operator and the bad actor?
By combining cameras, sensors, artificial intelligence, and advanced video analytics with cloud connectivity, Evolv Express not only distinguishes weapons from other metal items we carry, it can communicate what it’s found to other venue security technologies. This integration can automatically initiate security protocols and support the all-important communication and coordination of a security response across a venue when a weapons threat is identified.
In the latest release of Evolv Express®, Version 4.0, built-in integrations to Milestone VMS and Titan HST Mass Notification System mean that vital information about any threat verified at the system, or any request for assistance by an operator, is automatically sent to security technologies already in use across your venue. In other words, the same information that your operators have access to at any Express system across a venue can also be accessed by operators using these technologies for VMS (video management system) or mass notification at your venue: including all the associated downstream processes and protocols that these technologies already automate.
Better Threat Detection Plus Automated Communication
In addition to providing both an audible and a visual alarm, Evolv Express uses tablets connected to the system to provide operators with targeted views—both static and animated—of the bad actor(s) as they walk through the system. With the images communicated by Express, it’s easy for operators to quickly see both who alarmed the system, even as multiple people in the same party walk through together, and where on their person or bag to search, even if the threat is concealed or hard for other technologies to find, like high on their body or down at their feet.
When an operator does verify the presence of a weapon, one-touch tagging on the Express tablets instantly communicates information about the identified threat to integrated systems across a venue. Plus, an additional built-in communications function on the operator tablets, Request Assistance, also leverages these integrations to signal help—both with the speed and ease of a single touch and with the ability for an operator to quickly type in a message.
What Can Integrated Systems Do with This Information?
A fast and effective response to a potential weapons threat is essential to protecting a venue. The right information in a timely fashion accelerates this response, allowing the extended security team to execute protocols and procedures already built into these integrated technologies.
In the latest release of Evolv Express, Version 4.0, built-in and easy-to-configure integrations to Milestone VMS and Titan HST Mass Notification System communicate this vital information about threat items verified at the system, or requests for assistance made by an operator, to the security technologies already in use across your venue. A similar integration with the Avigilon Control Center (ACC) is also available.
These technologies can trigger venue protocols and procedures across your extended security teams and with other technologies: kicking off a venue-wide response like a lock-down, ensuring backup support is quickly sent to the scanner that detected the threat, communicating to the right personnel across security teams, employees, or even guests, and/or contacting local law enforcement authorities.
This information is not only useful for coordinating responses in-the-moment. It can also support future forensic analysis. In Milestone VMS, for example, playback of any past alerts is supported by associating a camera (either the front and rear cameras onboard Express or other cameras connected to Milestone VMS) with incoming alerts from Express—meaning that you can review footage captured just before and just after the time of the alert.
Conclusion: Integrations Should Alleviate the IT Burden on Security Teams—Not Add to It.
Whether it’s robotic dogs or integrated weapons detection, adding security technologies to a venue should not further burden security teams. Rather, these systems should become a seamless, valuable part supporting security personnel in their mission to keep a venue and its guests safe.
We’ve taken great care to build these integrations in as simple steps for system administrators to follow into the MyEvolv Portal—a web-based and mobile-enabled platform making it easy to remotely manage Evolv Express systems and their performance metrics across a venue or a set of venues. Then, operators at Express follow the same procedures as always—tag a threat they’ve identified with the right threat type (gun, knife, or other) or simply tap Request Assistance—and the integrated venue security technologies take it from there.
Addressing a weapons threat at ingress is vital to protecting your guests, employees, and visitors, and Evolv is working hard to integrate the security technologies that help teams realize that mission.