Piscataway, NJ and Mundelin, IL, March 22 - LifeSafety Power Inc., the industry leader in Smart Power Solutions and patented remote monitoring capabilities, has announced a new partnership with DAQ Electronics, LLC, a leading manufacturer of high-end security software and equipment.
LifeSafety Power is now an integral part of the commercial StarWatch™ Security Management System (SMS), providing the widely used and specified Authentic Mercury Security access controller hardware platform and integrated power in a seamless and easy to install enclosure. This StarWatch SMS product integration platform will be officially launched at ISC West 2016, April 5-8 in Las Vegas, where it will be on display in booth 3103. LifeSafety Power will also highlight the new partnership during the show at booth 14121.
The StarWatch SMS platform enables security professionals to easily design and deploy integrated systems consisting of access control, intrusion detection and video management, all through a single software interface. For installers and end-users looking to incorporate Authentic Mercury hardware or DAQ EntroStar units into their overall StarWatch SMS security solution, pre-installed access panel assemblies using LifeSafety Power technology are now available to suit one, two, four and eight door configurations. Each assembly resides in a LifeSafety Power painted steel enclosure and comes equipped with a FlexPower® FPO75/FPO150 power supply, with the exception of the one-door assembly, which is powered via PoE cabling. Within an integrated StarWatch SMS system, these assemblies provide the capacity to effectively control and monitor multiple doors/portals, including all associated entry/exit readers, door locks and door contacts.
Christopher Sincock, Vice President, Security Business for DAQ said, “Of the many enclosure options we researched for our StarWatch SMS equipment, we feel that the LifeSafety Power solution offers our customers the best combination of reliability and flexibility, and we are excited to begin this affiliation.”
LifeSafety Power is an award-winning provider of UL and cUL enclosures that meet a wide range of applications and specifications for integrated access controller hardware and power in a single design. In addition, LifeSafety Power network communications modules can remotely monitor the power to both the Mercury panels and locks to increase reliability and detect potential problems before they happen or as they occur with notification via email, smartphone or web-based device.
About LifeSafety Power®
LifeSafety Power® is the leader in Smart Power Solutions and patented remote monitoring capabilities, providing modular AC, DC and PoE power systems that meet the growing needs of the life safety and security industries. The FlexPower® and NetPower® product lines are high performance, network-connected, power management systems listed for access control, fire alarm, intrusion, CCTV and Mass Notification applications. LifeSafety Power, headquartered in Illinois, has won numerous industry awards and accolades for product design and innovation.
Arlington, VA, March 22 - eGlobalTech (eGT), a leading provider of management and IT consulting services for the Federal Government, has been awarded a five year contract with the US Department of Interior (DOI) to provide Drupal transition services.
eGT is supporting DOI with the migration of their existing websites to a new standardized common cloud-based Drupal platform powered by OpenPublic. OpenPublic provides a distribution specially designed for open government requirements.
DOI is undertaking a department-wide standardization of all of its public facing websites onto a common shared web content management platform, with emphasis on enhancing user experience for both internal users and public citizens. In addition to optimizing operations and maintenance costs through consolidation, DOI is seeking to achieve greater agility and deeper digital engagement with public citizens through the multitude of devices available today.
eGlobalTech (eGT) is a woman-owned management consulting and IT solutions firm based in Arlington, Virginia. eGT supports multiple federal customers including the Departments of Health and Human Services, Defense, Homeland Security, State, Education, Labor, Energy, and the General Services Administration. eGT is headquartered in Arlington, Virginia.
By Walter Ewing
When Donald Trump speaks of the Great Wall he would build between the United States and Mexico, he fails to account for a few inconvenient facts. For instance, there are millions of men, women, and children who live in communities that fall on both sides of the international boundary. There are millions of tourists, workers, students, and entrepreneurs who cross the border each day. And there are the billions of dollars in two-way trade that sustain millions of U.S. jobs.
Not surprisingly, were Trump to forge ahead with his plan to create an impenetrable border between two economically and socially integrated countries, he would destroy—or, at best, severely damage—these connections at an enormous humanitarian and economic cost. Likewise with his related plan to clear the United States of all undocumented immigrants, which would subtract millions of workers and consumers from the U.S. economy. If we try to make the United States a Mexico-free zone, we will tear the country apart in the process.
Consider a few facts about the U.S.-Mexico relationship that never make their way into the Great Wall rhetoric:
- The total value of U.S.-Mexico trade is more than $1 billion every day.
- More than 13 million Mexicans traveled to the United States in 2010, spending $8.7 billion.
- Roughly 6 million U.S. jobs are sustained by trade with Mexico.
- More than 20 percent of all U.S. jobs are tied in some way to trade along the border.
For people living in border communities, these are everyday facts of life that fly in the face of the political talking points so commonly used by nativists. That was a central theme of a panel discussion hosted by The Brookings Institution, titled “A complex reality: Security, trade, and the U.S.-Mexico border.” In the first discussion, two Texas Congressman, Will Hurd ® and Beto O’Rourke (D), transcended the ugly partisan politics that has overtaken the nation’s capital. Rep. Hurd described The Wall as “the most expensive and least effective way of securing the border.” He emphasized the relative safety of border cities and said that the border needs more customs agents, infrastructure upgrades for ports of entry, and intelligence-driven law-enforcement operations that target criminal organizations—not more border fencing and Border Patrol agents.
Similarly, Rep. O’Rourke emphasized that El Paso is the safest city in the country, and that San Diego is also in the top ten. He drove home the point that the border is not a dividing line; it’s where two countries, two cultures, and two languages come together. This is a region, spanning both sides of the border, which shares a common history. He also noted that there is no terrorist presence along the U.S.-Mexico border. Rather, the terrorist presence in the United States is either home grown or is arriving via international airports and across the U.S.-Canada border. The point being that more anti-terrorist security measures are not needed in a region that has lots of dilapidated ports of entry but no actual terrorists.
Of course, Trump’s political agenda includes not only building a wall to keep “them” out, but scooping up all of the undocumented Mexican immigrants in the United States and dumping them on the other side of that wall. This would be easier said than done. According to a report from the conservative American Action Forum—headed by Douglas Holtz-Eakin, former Director of the Congressional Budget Office—the cost of undertaking such an operation would be absurdly high. More precisely, removing 11.3 million undocumented immigrants in two years would require:
- Increasing the number of federal immigration apprehension personnel from 4,844 positions to 90,582 positions.
- Increasing the number of immigration detention beds from 34,000 to 348,831.
- Increasing the number of immigration courts from 58 to 1,316.
- Increasing the number of federal attorneys legally processing undocumented immigrants from 1,430 to 32,445.
And that’s just the beginning. The report concludes that “in just two years it would shrink the labor force by 10.3 million workers and reduce real GDP by $1 trillion.”
Trump and his allies seem to envision a border region populated entirely by murderers and drug traffickers who must be kept out of the United States at all costs. But that’s not the real world. The border is actually home to millions of families and billions of dollars in commerce that provide a large share of the economic life blood of this country. Declaring war on Mexico would be a supremely self-destructive act.
Photo Courtesy of Living-Learning Programs.
By Steve Bittenbender
A pair of researchers from George Mason University have produced a study that claims the threat unmanned aircraft pose on piloted plane may be lower than anticipated.
To come up with that finding Eli Dourado, a research fellow at GMU’s Mercatus Center, and Samuel Hammond, a graduate student and fellow, reviewed 25 years of collisions between planes and birds. While U.S. airspace is filled with about 10 billion birds of various sizes, there have only been 14,314 incidents since 1990 that have caused damage to planes.
That means it’s likely that one bird out of 1 million flies into a plane every year, and most of the damage is minor. Injuries are rare too.
“Among the 398 people who have sustained injuries as a result of bird strikes, 100 stem from a single incident: the famous 2009 crash of US Airways Flight 1549 into the Hudson River,” the researchers said.
Only 12 bird-plane strikes resulted in a fatality, and only one of those was a commercial aircraft. The person who died from that actually died from an ensuing infection and not the actual strike itself.
And none of the fatal collisions involved small birds, the researchers said. That’s important to note because most of the drones taking to the skies are smaller in size. While the researchers note that a drone’s more rigid structure could make it likely that a small drone strike could enact damage, they encourage people to take a deeper look at the numbers and the fact that drones fly far less frequently birds.
“To date, no commercial drone or consumer quadrocopter has ever collided with an aircraft in US airspace,” they said. “Given that there are likely now more than 1 million UAS in US airspace, if they had equivalent flight hours to birds we might expect at least one UAS collision with an aircraft per year. However, taking into consideration human agency and the far more limited time most UAS spend in the air, the true UAS collision rate is likely orders of magnitude lower.”
After seeing a sudden spike last year in the number of incidents reported by pilots, the Federal Aviation Administration took steps to begin regulating unmanned aircraft so that they did not interfere with larger planes. One of the steps they took was the creation of a registry. As of last week, more than 400,000 drone owners have registered their crafts on it, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said.
However, the Academy of Model Aeronautics has called into question the legitimacy of some of the claims. While the FAA said there were 764 “near miss” incidents between drones and planes, the academy could only find evidence of 27 such incidents.
The academy’s government relations staff even took note of the research on the AMA Web site.
“The research makes some strong conclusions about the unlikelihood of a (drone) strike with a full scale aircraft nullifying many of the exaggerated concerns,” the AMA said.
The researchers’ full report can be found at: http://mercatus.org/publication/do-consumer-drones-endanger-national-airspace-evidence-wildlife-strike-data
Anthony Roman, terror expert
By Steve Bittenbender
The international airport and a subway station in Belgium’s capital were the targets of terrorists, whose attacks on those facilities Tuesday morning have killed at least 30 people and injured scores more.
Terror organization Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attacks, according to the Amaq news agency. Suicide bombers detonated two devices at Brussels’ Zaventem airport. A third device did not explode as first responders eventually diffused it.
“Islamic State fighters opened fire inside Zaventem Airport, before several of them detonated their explosive belts, (and) as a martyrdom bomber detonated his explosive belt in the Maalbeek metro station,” the news agency reported.
World leaders quickly denounced the attacks, which came just days after Belgian officials arrested an individual believed to be a surviving attacker from last November’s deadly raid on Paris. Those attacks, also committed by ISIS, killed more than 130 people.
“We will do whatever is necessary to support our friend and ally, Belgium, in bringing to justice those who are responsible,” President Obama said. “And this is yet another reminder that the world must unite, we must be together, regardless of nationality, or race, or faith, in fighting against the scourge of terrorism.”
On Friday, Belgian police stormed into Brussels’ Molenbeek neighborhood to capture Salah Abdeslam, whose brother died as a suicide bomber in the Paris attacks. Authorities allege the French citizen fled to the densely populated Brussels neighborhood, which features a large Muslim population, after the deadly Nov. 13 incidents.
However, not all believe Tuesday’s events were done only just because of Abdeslam’s capture. Some believe the level of planning indicates the attack may have been planned well in advance.
“The likely purpose of the attack is twofold,” said Timothy Nichols, executive director of the Counterterrorism and Public Policy Fellowship Program at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy. “First, to erode the confidence of the citizens in their government’s ability to protect them; secondly, to provoke an overreaction against the Muslim community that would consequentially ‘push’ moderate Muslims toward ISIS in both support and operations.”
While Belgian officials found the suspect, terror expert Anthony Roman of Roman and Associates said their security network is too small and “doesn't have deep intelligence penetration into the radical elements in centered in Molenbeek.”
Roman added that his sources indicate the Muslim neighborhoods have become more defiant since the Paris attacks.
The way the terrorists struck the airport raised concerns for Roman, too. Three men pushed luggage carts into the airport. There were some shouts in Arabic and some shots fired before two men detonated their bombs. The third suspect escaped and a manhunt is underway for that individual.
Roman said a lacking police presence in most U.S. airports and the existing problems with the Transportation Security Administration make American airports just as vulnerable.
With the attacks taking place in areas of heavy traffic, experts added that it makes the role of travelers and commuters even more important. While more security cameras, more sensors and more officers can be added, they still may not see everything that is suspicious.
Ed English, CEO of ELERTS, which provides a mobile application for passengers to report activity on six major transit systems in the country, said people need to report such suspicions as quickly as possible.
“Since 9/11, public transportation systems have been a soft target for terrorists and transportation authorities have installed systems and technology and encouraged riders to report suspicious behavior,” English said. “Those systems work even better when transit riders know what to look for and report it. Human analytics are very powerful.”
Sony’s newest 4K network camera, model SNC-VB770, offers the highest sensitivity in its class - under 0.004lx, expandable to ISO 100-409600. The new model combines ultra-high sensitivity with 4K resolution and advanced networking capabilities to give video professionals more flexibility to capture details even in extreme low-light conditions.
The new SNC-VB770 camera achieves high resolution and sensitivity, in addition to low noise due to its image processing and full-frame 35mm Exmor sensor – all developed by Sony.
The sensor captures significantly more light with low noise than conventional camera sensors to realize drastic improvements in sensitivity. The result is low light performance in nearly pitch-black environments beyond the capabilities of human eyes.
The SNC-VB770’s E-mount lens series accommodates a variety of lens options from wide angle to telephoto, allowing easy integration into a range of video capture applications, including surveillance such as city, transportation, ports or critical infrastructure; web attraction, nature studies or scientific applications.
“The SNC-VB770 builds on Sony’s image sensor strengths and applies this expertise to new applications in the commercial video capture realm,” said Atsushi Seki, Director, Business Development at Sony Electronics. “Low-light conditions don’t only occur at night. They exist 24/7 in museums, zoos and any number of municipal and commercial areas. This new camera and our expanding line of 4K network models give users more options for meeting their demanding capture requirements.”
With the exceptional detail provided by 4K technology (4 times the detail of full HD) security professionals, for example, can expand their wide area surveillance and still capture, magnify and examine the smallest parts of a scene like a face or a car license plate number – all with a single camera.
The new camera uses area-specific noise reduction to selectively divide images into areas based on patterns (such as edges, textures and evenly colored areas like blue skies) to efficiently reduce noise. In addition, detail reproduction technology further enhances image quality.
E-mount lenses are optimized to maximize the performance of the 35 mm full-frame sensor, keeping resolution high across the entire image area from the center to the lens periphery.
The camera’s Intelligent Cropping feature lets users capture a full view while cropping images in its native 4K resolution from multiple images at the same time, with either 3 or 5 simultaneous video streams.
Intelligent Cropping has two modes, static and dynamic. Users can select “static” to see multiple specific areas in one scene. They can capture an overview image and the details of the cropped areas at the same time. “Dynamic” mode uses the intelligent motion to detect, crop and track moving objects automatically.
Intelligent Scene Capture automatically adjusts and adapts picture quality (brightness and color) depending on time, weather and lighting conditions. The camera also allows users to customize picture parameter presets for the best settings. Multiple picture configurations can be saved and switched either manually (using the Picture Profile mode) or according to schedule (Picture Profile Scheduler) to ensure the best picture quality day or night.
Norfolk, VA, March 21 - Defense and security company Saab showcased its Sea Giraffe 1X naval radar for the first time at the Maritime Security East Conference in Norfolk, Virginia (March 21-23). Sea Giraffe 1X offers simultaneous surface and air surveillance capabilities, a growing need in the U.S. maritime security sector.
Sea Giraffe 1X is a 3D, active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar. The entire system weighs less than 650 pounds in total, making it suitable for smaller patrol ships. With no forced cooling requirements and a minimal number of line-replaceable units (LRUs), it requires little power or upkeep. All maintenance, including LRU repair, can be performed by low-level trained engineers.
"Sea Giraffe 1X is ideal for the small patrol vessels that are facing a growing role in U.S. national security," said Gene Bojarski, Business Development Manager of Naval Programs with Saab Defense and Security USA's Sensor Systems division. "Traditionally, smaller patrol ships have only used surface surveillance radar – but as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) become more prevalent, these ships must begin to add air surveillance capabilities as well."
To combat the growing UAV threat, Sea Giraffe 1X features Saab's Enhanced Low, Slow and Small (ELSS) surveillance function. This feature allows the radar system to detect and classify small, low-flying, slow-moving air targets – while concurrently conducting its full suite of other air and surface reconnaissance duties.
"Sea Giraffe 1X enhances situational awareness for maritime patrol, surface combat and counter-UAV operations," continued Bojarski. "Nothing else on the market offers this range of capabilities in one easy, lightweight package."
Maritime Security 2016 East is the fourth installment of the Maritime Security East program series, building upon the successes of last year’s conference in Jacksonville, FL. As the fourteenth maritime security conference hosted by Homeland Security Outlook since 2011, Maritime Security 2016 East furthers a commitment to address the needs of governments, law enforcement, and critical infrastructure to counter the challenges of securing coastlines, inland waterways, and their critical infrastructure.
Featured speakers at this year’s event included U.S. Coast Guard Rear Admiral Stephen P. Metruck, the commander of the Fifth Coast Guard District; Anh Duong, director of the Borders and Maritime Security Division of the Department of Homeland Security; Assistant Commissioner Todd Owen, with the Office of Field Operations for U.S. Customs and Border Protection; and Wolf Tombe, chief technology officer for Customs and Border Protection.
Saab Defense and Security USA LLC delivers advanced technologies and systems to the United States Armed Forces and other government agencies. Headquartered in Ashburn, Virginia, the company has business units and local employees in four states. Saab Defense and Security USA is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Saab Group.
Saab Group serves the global market with world-leading products, services and solutions within military defense and civil security. Saab has operations and employees on all continents around the world. Through innovative, collaborative and pragmatic thinking, Saab develops, adopts and improves new technology to meet customers' changing needs.
As the federal government now requires defense contractors to assess the security of their information technology systems, a New York company has come up with an innovative way to help those companies evaluate their systems and identify opportunities for improvements and enhancements.
Intelleges is a New York-based company that provides proprietary software to corporate leaders and government agencies that need to collect data and documentation for a variety of reasons. through a proprietary solution that allows its clients to develop customizable questionnaires and store the results and documents gathered in a FedRAMP certified cloud-based system.
Last fall, the Department of Defense’s Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) supplement issued new guidelines requiring contractors and their subcontractors to safeguard sensitive defense data that it stores or handles. As defense contractors began to evaluate how they were protecting that critical information, some began reaching out to Intelleges to help them. That led to the development of the company’s Stacked Information Technology Cybersecurity Assessment Maturity Model (SIT-CAMM).
John Betancourt, the company’s founder, said the company has been doing this work for its existing clients for more than 15 years, but now with the government’s new regulation regarding cybersecurity, it’s essential that all government contractors – as well as other organizations that handle sensitive personal data such as an individual’s credit cards or personal health records – get an assessment as quickly as possible.
As part of the Intelleges’ assessment system, the company created a matrix to determine a company’s strengths when it comes to IT security. The system, which is based on the Capability Maturity Model Integration scale, evaluates companies across 15 areas related to information technology. SIT-CAMM uses NIST and ISO 2700 standards in developing the questions for the assessment. Those questions are tailored specifically for each company. Among the items SIT-CAMM assesses includes: a company’s IT usage, its business process management, its regulatory compliance and its training program.
“Using our proprietary software, we can create and distribute a series of electronic questionnaires designed to determine software, hardware and network usage, compliance, mission alignment, satisfaction levels, usability, and cybersecurity compliance,” Betancourt said. “These questionnaires will provide insight into possible strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) that the IT department will need to address.”
Companies then receive a rating based on where their assessed areas stand. Companies that are just beginning to identify their needs may be assessed at a Level 1, while those who have fully optimized their departments may receive a Level 5 rating.
As part of its assessment, Intelleges will work with companies and identify ways to improve their scores in certain areas. That includes developing recommendations based on industry best practices. Those recommendations will help companies establish their own procedures, and then they can set realistic benchmarks to evaluate their performance against those standards.
Intelleges delivers the recommendations to the organization’s CIO in a report similar to an audit. The recommendations are prioritized to highlight the most critical findings that put the company in serious risk. In addition, Intelleges can bring in a partner company that provides intrusion detection consulting to give IT leaders and other decision makers greater peace of mind regarding their systems.
“These reports are specifically intended for managers responsible for the day-to-day decision making and long-term strategic planning,” Betancourt said. “It also designed to be used by corporate leaders as they seek to improve their knowledge and understanding of their internal IT departments.”
Betancourt offers more than 20 years of high-level professional IT and software development experience. He started by developing an interest rate forecasting tool for the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics. He’s also worked as the chief software architect for the Federal Reserve’s New York office. He worked there until he started Intelleges 16 years ago.
It’s not just companies working with the federal government that need to consider requesting a SIT-CAMM for their organization. Betancourt said any company that handles sensitive data needs to find a way to safeguard themselves from potential attacks and the lawsuits and hefty civil fines that can come about because of them.
For more information on how Intelleges can help your company better understand its IT security needs, go to Intelleges.com.
Los Angeles - Airport perimeter breaches have become all too commonplace. According to a news investigation published in April of 2015, at the time, there had been 24 perimeter breaches at LAX since 2004. LAX has seen more perimeter breaches in the past three years than any other three year span in recent history. For example, a mentally ill man scaled the perimeter fence eight times between April 2012 and March 2013 and in two of those instances he was able to reach stairs that led to jets.
More recently, in December of 2015, vandals used bolt cutters to pass through the fence at Van Nuys airport and spray paint three private jets. A nearly identical breach occurred at Van Nuys in July 2013, after which LAAPOA immediately called for perimeter cameras and an alert system for Airport Police, as we did not have real-time access to the cameras along the fence line. To date, and multiple incidents later, our recommendations have gone unanswered by airport management. In fact, Airport Police still do not have dedicated cameras with a real-time feed of the perimeter fence or a perimeter intrusion detection system, and there has been no tangible changes instituted at LAX, Van Nuys or Ontario.
What is it going to take for airport management to address this vulnerability?!
Former Airport Police Chief Patrick Gannon believes "[t]here is nothing that can't be penetrated." This defeatist position does not mean we should not take all reasonable steps possible to protect our airports, particularly when a camera and alert system for Airport Police is feasible and effective. Given the increase in airport and aircraft threat incidents, it is incumbent upon airports to take proactive steps to increase the safety of the traveling public.
"Airports continue to be high value terrorist targets," said Marshall McClain, President of the Los Angeles Airport Peace Officers Association. "Those wanting to do harm are actively looking for any way to exploit vulnerabilities within or at the perimeter of our airports. We can't just cross our fingers and hope for the best. These regular incursions are not acceptable and basic technology fixes will help better protect our airports."
The Los Angeles Airport Peace Officers Association (LAAPOA) represents the sworn police officers and firefighters of the Los Angeles Airport Police Department assigned to protect and serve Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), LA/Ontario International Airport (ONT) and Van Nuys Airport (VNY).
Pearl River, NY (March 17, 2016) – OnSSI, the market leader in open architecture and intelligent IP video surveillance software, has been awarded the 2015 Partner of the Year Award from Hanwha Techwin America, highlighting OnSSI’s outstanding ability to integrate with Hanwha’s product line. The award was presented during the Samsung Techwin STEP Partner Summit held in Puerto Rico from March 6-9, 2016.
“The recognition by Hanwha Techwin America as Partner of the Year is a testament to our commitment to powerful integrations between Ocularis 5 and Hanwha’s technologies,” said Ken LaMarca, VP of Sales and Marketing, OnSSI, “We look forward to further expanding our technology integration efforts with Hanwha Techwin America.”
“OnSSI is always one of the first of our partners to integrate with any of our newest products,” said Tom Cook, VP of Sales, North America, Hanwha Techwin America. “They provide exceptional service to support all of our efforts, both in the U.S. and in Korea.”
On-Net Surveillance Systems, Inc. (OnSSI) was founded in 2002 with the goal of developing comprehensive and intelligent IP video surveillance management software. OnSSI’s Ocularis IP security and surveillance VMS platform increases security, reduces operational costs, and helps organizations move closer to prevention. Ocularis delivers open architecture, flexibility, and scalability for a range of applications including education, gaming, government, healthcare, manufacturing, public safety, transportation, and utilities. OnSSI is headquartered in Pearl River, New York and has representation in over 100 countries. With its acquisition of Germany-based VMS company, SeeTec AG and the launch of Ocularis 5, OnSSI continues to drive global expansion and technological innovations.
About Hanwha Techwin America
Hanwha Techwin America, a division of Hanwha Techwin, is a leading supplier of advanced video surveillance solutions for IP-video, analog and hybrid systems. Building on the company’s history of innovation, Hanwha Techwin America is dedicated to providing solutions with the highest levels of performance, reliability and cost-efficiency for professional security applications, such as continuing development in advanced edge devices and video analytics.