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Surveillance Technology Will Soon Have AI & ML Facility

Sudhindra-HollaAxis Communication optimises security and business performance for its customers while making sure that the solutions are as simple and user-friendly as possible – from installation to operation. Due to its work commitment and best offerings, Axis Communications has been chosen to install 125+ network cameras throughout the palace to provide excellent image quality powered over the Ethernet. With cutting edge surveillance, the heritage site with automated crowd management apart from provided a holistic solution for remote monitoring and perimeter security. There is also testing going on with an Axis audio system, with network mini speakers and horn speakers as an added security feature to the palace, and analytics such as people counting, body temperature of visitors coming inside, face mask on/off, AXIS Perimeter Defender, etc. During an e-mail interaction with Nitisha from BISinfotech; Sudhindra Holla, Director, Axis Communications India & SAARC explains surveillance technology and its demands.

Kindly explain the growing importance of surveillance in the preservation of heritage sites and in the tourism industry.

Heritage sites, a crucial part in the tourism industry not only acts as a rear-view mirror to history and architecture but also stands as the epitome of a country’s rich culture and represents the way of life over generations. Tourist hotspots, heritage sites additionally further a country’s economic growth through tourism. Thus, it is important to protect and preserve these assets. Surveillance has risen to become one of the most crucial tools in the preservation of these heritage sites. A comprehensive surveillance system provides multi-fold benefits like prevention of trespassing, vandalism, perimeter security, commercial strategic planning and security planning, as well as crowd management and ensuring social distancing norms in today’s world.

Please highlight the role of technological innovation in providing a comprehensive end to end solution in the Mysore Palace project.

One of the world famous and busiest heritage sites in Karnataka, Mysore Palace required an IP based surveillance system for perimeter security and crowd management especially during the peak tourist season, holidays and Dussehra. The management was looking for a modern IP solution to reduce human intervention and reduce the bandwidth of stored videos.

Axis Communication along with, Bangalore Datacom successfully upgraded the palace’s existing surveillance system with different models and Ethernet powered over 125 Axis Network cameras for top notch image quality. The outdoor cameras are vandal resistant and enabled with Axis Lightfinder technology for visibility under extreme low light conditions. All the installations have remote monitoring functions and a command control room which is designed for smart supervision of the Palace grounds. Additionally, alarm indicators were installed for real time notifications for quick intervention in case of any incident. All the cameras have analytics such as people counting, face mask on/off, and AXIS Perimeter Defender.  These features helped Mysore Palace is achieving an effective remote monitoring system. To make the system more robust and cyber secure, we have also installed Axis ARTPEC chip in the cameras to reduce the risk of a breach by third party.

Currently, we are testing the implementation of its audio system with network mini speakers and horn speakers as an added security feature to the palace.

What is the role of analytics, AI and ML infused surveillance system aiding in remote monitoring and crowd management during the pandemic

As any new technology matures beyond the initial ‘hype’, weaknesses and limitations of the technology will become clear and only in the areas where the technology it provides real value, we will see growth. In surveillance it is important to start with the use-case: what problem are you trying to solve, or which effect are you looking to achieve? Based on a good understanding of the specific use-case it is much more feasible to apply Artificial Intelligence(AI), Machine Learning(ML) and Deep Learning(DL) to achieve a good result.

Use of analytics, AI, ML, in surveillance has accelerated during the pandemic with the change in perception of CCTV as a mere crime prevention tool to acting as the backbone for ensuring citizen safety and health. It has proven to be a critical technology partner supporting various authorities in delivering the task of monitoring the city and traffic while adhering to the social distancing norms.

Various solutions, today, pivot around the capability of analytics, AI and ML to provide insights on the number of people present in a specific area. These insights further allows the management monitor remotely and take immediate action to make social distancing normal while improving service, operational efficiency and profitability. Such technologies also provides a cost-efficient way to accurately estimate occupancy levels of specific areas to understand visitor patterns and the use of the assigned space. It provides real-time data on how many people are present in the premises or in a certain area at a certain time. This data helps in increasing operational efficiency to maintain the premises and avoid crowding, optimize workforce planning and opening hours and take necessary measures to adhere to the social distancing guidelines. Additionally, technology infused audio announcement solutions to better manage, monitor and respond to seamless crowd management. Touch Free solutions, Body Temperature Monitoring solutions, Mask Detection solutions and Touch Free Attendance systems with facial recognition capabilities additionally offers top-notch solutions for minimal to zero physical contact to create a secure environment.

Kindly share the challenges in surveillance system industry.

The rise of digital dependency of intelligent surveillance systems has put across several challenges in the surveillance industry.

Cybersecurity should be an ongoing concern for consumers and companies in every sector, within their own organizations, amongst their stakeholders and throughout supply chains. The video surveillance industry is no exception. With the popularity of cloud-based solution and easy accessibility and availability of data, it has become extremely crucial to protect one’s data and thus increases the demand for a robust cybersecurity solution to prevent any breaches.

The increasing demand for a unified security platform requires a lot of seamless coordination with system integrators. Every element of the surveillance system lifecycle – from the initial design through implementation and configuration, to ongoing maintenance – presents challenges for system integrators, and involves multiple tools as extensive human labour. A poorly integrated unified security platform may lead to more time and labour and coordination in getting access to footage. Working in a multi – vendor project is a time-consuming process as it requires the right alignment of the all the solutions provided by different vendors.

A weak bandwidth or poor connectivity is another major threat to the seamless monitoring process today as it can lead to lapses and latency in the footage or fail to provide real time updates and notify timely in case of an incident.

What will be your marketing strategy for future growth? How was the business in this pandemic situation?

Innovation is at the heart of Axis Communications; we will continue to further our efforts towards meeting and delivering customer expectations and experience with our products and solutions. We have had a series of announcements on our product portfolio in India. We will additionally strengthen our pan India presence with the expansion of a strong channel partner ecosystem through our educational certification courses and focused channel partner initiatives. We are also planning to increase our presence through penetration in the Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities.

The unprecedented pandemic taught us the lesson of patience and life. Even though the times were volatile, we remained optimistic on our business outlook. We witnessed a surge in demand for our solutions in industries like healthcare, city surveillance, data centres, and critical infrastructure. The government-initiated project which had halted during the first lockdown has resumed and we are progressing towards its completion. The increasing awareness towards the necessity of a strong surveillance system has also led to the growing demand of its implementation.

What are the emerging technologies that will play a big role in the surveillance industry?

With the rapid technological advancements affecting the surveillance industry, the demand for smart intelligent surveillance systems has risen to be one top trends in the industry for businesses to thrive in the new normal and ensuring business continuity with employee health and safety at the forefront.

Smart applications and services will be deployed across server, cloud and edge to employ the best capabilities of each and also improve solution performance and efficiency. For example, edge analytics in a surveillance camera will potentially message an operator with an alert, the operator then accessing the live video feed through a cloud-based application to verify and respond.

Automation will play a crucial role in technology infused surveillance systems to proactively detect and notify incidents and accidents in real time basis for a swifter response. Intelligent security surveillance systems will additionally be able to analyse data on-site for better functionality and improved efficiency. This move from reactive to proactive, manual to automated will also aid in reducing bandwidth, energy and cost.

Machine Learning (ML) and Deep Learning (DL) will become available in surveillance technology, the implications of its use will be a factor in near future. Utilization of these technologies in edge devices can assist in identifying objects and reducing false positives. Security experts can move to a proactive, event-based way of working, rather than continuous manual monitoring

Regulations, and consumer habits established during the onset of the ongoing pandemic will become commonplace. Driven by the hygiene and social distancing concerns, technology will support the monitoring and enforcement of the surveillance equipement owing to the increasing implementation of low- or no-contact technologies, especially in areas such as access control. In addition, surveillance solutions with people-counting capabilities will become the norm, to ensure adherence to social distancing regulations.

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Nitisha Dubey

I am a Journalist with a post graduate degree in Journalism & Mass Communication. I love reading non-fiction books, exploring different destinations and varieties of cuisines. Biographies and historical movies are few favourites.

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