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New Green Cards issued with advanced security measures

New "Green Card"

LaserCard Corp., of Mountain View, CA, announced the next generation of U.S. Permanent Resident Card, most commonly referred to as the “Green Card,” on May 12, featuring advanced optical security media, enhanced visual and forensic security features, and a Radio Frequency Identity (RFID) tag.

The new card represents the first time optical security media and RFID have been implemented on a single card platform with sophisticated, tamperproof features.

The cards digitally store the cardholder’s photograph, fingerprint, name, digitized signature, date of birth and registration number. This information cannot be erased or fraudulently altered and private data can be read only by DHS personnel using a custom secure reader.

LaserCard has supplied the U.S. Government with more than 20 million Green Cards since 1997, and the digital security of the card has not ever been compromised, according to LaserCard.

“We worked closely with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to develop the most physically secure and counterfeit-resistant identification credentials available today,” said Bob DeVincenzi, president and CEO. “In 1998, the implementation of LaserCard's technology on the Green Card effectively put a halt to mass counterfeiting. This new version with enhanced visual and physical security puts a credible copy even further out of the reach of counterfeiters.

“We see this latest version of the Green Card as the ID equivalent of the new U.S. $100 bill,” he added.

The new card will be sent to legal permanent residents by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) beginning on May 10. LaserCard has been shipping quantities of the new card to DHS for several months.

 

NYC Fire Commissioner approves AES Corp. products

MultiNet receiver system

AES Corporation, of Peabody, MA, announced on May 12 that the company’s AES-IntelliNet MultiNet long-range mesh alarm communications products have been approved by order of the New York City Fire Commissioner Salvatore Cassano. 

The products receiving this new certificate of approval include the 7705i MultiNet Receiver, the AES-7170 IP Link, the 7788 Fire Subscriber and the 7770 FireTap, pursuant to Section FC 112 and 901 of the New Fire Code for New York.

Tom Kenty, the general manager of AES-IntelliNet, said, “We are excited about the opportunity as we are now able to provide our business partners serving New York City and all five boroughs with AES-IntelliNet's long-range wireless MultiNet alarm communications solution. AES-IntelliNet business partners will now be able to offer their customers and families the fastest most reliable fire alarm communications system on the market and increase their own RMR at the same time.”

According to a letter drafted by the FDNY on April 29, 2010, the company’s fire alarm communications equipment can be used in installations where alarm signals from one or more AES-IntelliNet wireless radio networks need to be received and managed centrally at an authorized emergency response center.

The AES alarm communications system is a self healing, long-range wireless mesh radio communication network that works through the Internet to provide customers the ability to monitor alarms in multiple regions from one remote location, without the typical recurring monthly communications costs or infrastructure fees usually associated with remote monitoring. The mesh network also offers a means of communicating with a central monitoring station without relying on telephone lines or cellular services that are vulnerable in many ways.

Clean water is essential in times of crisis

Clean water system

PureSafe Water Systems, Inc., of Plainview, NY, announced on May 11 the introduction of its new First Response Water System (FRWS). The FRWS is designed to meet the on-site clean drinking water needs of both first responders and citizens who will require water during future possible natural or man-made disasters.

PureSafe's FRWS can deliver up to 30,000 gallons per day of fresh, EPA-compliant water from “any source at any time” within 30 minutes of reaching a disaster area. It can provide clean potable water for up to 45,000 people a day.

Leslie Kessler, Chairman and CEO, said the new product is “significant for the first responder community as a turning point in the way emergency managers provide critical water supplies during emergencies in the U.S. and worldwide.”

"It would have been ideal to have this innovation available during the 9/11 disaster," said Peter Hayden, who served as the Chief of Department of the New York City Fire Department (FDNY) at the time of the 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center.

The company plans to exhibit the new product during the first week of June at the 2010 Long Island/New York City Emergency Management Conference, called Emergency Management 2010: Meeting the Challenge, in Melville, NY.

David Farmer joins Environics Communciations as Technology VP

Farmer

Public Relations firm Environics Communications, Inc. of Washington, DC, has announced that David Farmer will head the agency’s technology and telecommunications division. Environics has represented clients in this field -- ranging from hardware manufacturers to digital satellite broadcasters to telecom service companies -- for more than 15 years.

“I’m very excited and thrilled to be here and it’s great company and a great place to work,” Farmer told GSN: Government Security News in an exclusive interview about his new position.

Farmer brings to Environics almost a quarter of a century of professional public relations and corporate communications experience, both in the U.S. and abroad. Before joining the firm, Farmer – who began his career with Sprint International – was vice president of corporate communications and marketing at SkyTerra Communications, a supplier of mobile satellite communications services that is now at the forefront of developing the first integrated satellite-cellular communications network in America. Prior to SkyTerra, Farmer worked in public relations and marketing at Telenor Satellite Services and COMSAT Corp., which is now a part of Lockheed Martin.

“My objective is to grow the business area of telecommunications and technology for Environics here in Washington, DC,” Farmer said. “My job is to bring in new customers and support new clients with their communications objectives.”

Farmer -- who has an MBA in international business from George Washington University and a BS in business administration and marketing from George Mason University -- has spent the bulk of his career handling strategic planning and messaging as well as launching new technologies, services and products for use by businesses, the government and private consumers. 

“David Farmer has extensive experience in developing and implementing communications campaigns domestically and internationally that reach consumers, businesses, government agencies, and the investment community,” said Dave Groobert, general manager of Environics Communications in the U.S. “He knows how to create awareness programs that use both traditional and new media, and is a strong addition to our rapidly expanding U.S. operations.”

TSA procures a cutting-edge multi-media presentation system called Orator Plus

Orator Plus

TSA has announced that it has awarded a sole source contract worth $242,330, if all options are exercised, to Orator Plus, Inc., a six-year-old company based in Monterey, CA, that has developed a multi-media presentation system that TSA intends to use to display panoramic photos and videos of buildings, transportation systems and venues it wants to secure.

The presentation system, which is also known as Orator Plus, can fuse together images and video from a variety of different sources, and present them to decision makers as something of a war-room on a thumb drive,” Hector Gonzalez, the president of the company, told GSN: Government Security News exclusively. “It’s like PowerPoint meets the movie Minority Report,” said Gonzalez. 

Orator Plus can handle still photos and video captured on hardware that the company will supply to TSA, as well as inputs from more exotic sources, such as Google Earth or feeds from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), Gonzalez explained.

“This contract will address the requirements of [the] Transportation Security Network Management (TSNM) I-View project to record panoramic still and video images of transportation systems and infrastructure,” said TSA in its contract award announcement on May 7. The fixed-price purchase order to Orator Plus has an initial amount of $188,330 for the base period, plus an additional $54,000 for four one-year options.

“Orator Plus creates personalized interactive presentations for a wide variety of applications,” explains the company’s Web site. “Orator Plus presentations can display large amounts of data in numerous media formats simultaneously, allowing access in a non-linear method utilizing a customizable menu system.”

The Orator Plus software enables an organization to capture photos, videos and other inputs from multiple sources without encountering a common obstacle, explained Gonzalez. “Usualy, every different sensor uses its own software, and you’re forced to flip from one application to another,” he said.

By contrast, Orator Plus allows a government official to call up and view whatever input he or she wants to see, without having to flip from one application to another.

“TSA has a requirement to purchase still cameras, video cameras and associated camera equipment, along with presentation system software, software licenses and software training to capture imagery data without regard to format; and display the imagery on a standard laptop or desktop computer,” said TSA’s award announcement.

Further information is available from Brandon Prindle, of TSA, at 571-227-3002 or [email protected].

SureScan Corp. appoints John Marsala VP of Int’l Sales

John Marsala

SureScan Corp. has announced the appointment of John Marsala as its new Vice President of International Sales, a move that strengthens SureScan’s management team during a period of accelerating growth. Effective immediately, Marsala will report to LeeAnn Levesque, General Manager of SureScan.

With several years experience in international sales for homeland security technology companies, Marsala brings broad and progressive knowledge of the needs of the industry to SureScan. He has been successful in sales channel management, business development and driving aggressive corporate growth. Prior to joining SureScan, Marsala held senior sales positions at other new technology and homeland security companies, most notably L3 SafeView, Brijot Imaging and Qylur Security Systems.

In March 2010, the European Union (EU) announced new regulations requiring more stringent security standards in aviation screening of checked baggage that will significantly increase the demand for high speed EDS equipment, like SureScan’s x1000, in the EU and airports around the world over the next 10 years, said a prepared statement issued by SureScan.

“I am very pleased that John is joining us as the EU is shifting their security requirements,” said LeeAnn Levesque. “His industry relationships will be pivotal in launching our product in countries outside of the United States.”

Marsala holds a B.S. in engineering from West Point, an M.S. in organic chemistry from George Washington University and was a Captain in the U.S. Army. 

 

Thermo Fisher Scientific delivers chemical identification instruments to TSA

Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. has completed shipment of 135 Thermo Scientific handheld chemical identification instruments, formerly sold under the Ahura Scientific brand, to fulfill a contract valued at $6,154,912 from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).

The instruments will be deployed throughout airports in the U.S., says a company press statement issued May 10. The contract award was first announced by TSA on March 25.

The devices use a chemical identification system based on Raman spectroscopy, a technique used for rapid identification and screening of explosive materials.

“We have worked with the TSA to provide technology to help enhance the safety and security of airline travel in the United States,” said Doug Kahn, vice president and general manager of Thermo Fisher Scientific’s portable optical analysis business (which was formerly Ahura Scientific). “These instruments enable security personnel to protect the traveling public through rapid, accurate identification of unknown substances.”

With revenues of more than $10 billion, Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. has approximately 35,000 employees and serve customers within pharmaceutical and biotech companies, hospitals and clinical diagnostic labs, universities, research institutions and government agencies, as well as in environmental and process control industries.

AS&E continues to lead the pack for government-ordered X-ray technology

Mobile X-ray

American Science and Engineering, Inc. (AS&E) of Billerica, MA, announced the receipt of another multi-million order from the U.S. government for multiple Z Backscatter Van (ZBV) X-ray screening systems.

“We continue to receive outstanding field performance reports from ZBV customers,” said president and CEO Anthony Fabiano. “With its exceptional speed and versatility, the ZBV has proven to be a valuable tool for customs, law enforcement, and military officials for the detection of drugs, explosives, contraband, and stowaways. We have worked very closely with U.S. government officials to meet their requirements, and we are very proud to continue to assist them in their important mission.”

The contract – which will cost the government $13.9 million – comes on the heels of similar contract announced at the end of April for $48.8 million and one announced at the end of March for $2.5 million.

BriefCam Video Synopsis catches ‘bad guys’ at IFSEC 2010

BriefCam, a developer and provider of Video Synopsis systems for reviewing, analyzing and indexing of surveillance camera content, has invited attendees of the IFSEC 2010 Global Annual Security Event, which begins May 10 in Birmingham, UK, to take 40 seconds and learn the basics of Video Synopsis technology with some serious fun.

BriefCam’s Video Synopsis (VS) technology lets users browse hours in minutes by providing a very short video representation of a long time period, while preserving all the essential activities of the original video.

Video Synopsis fulfills the unmet global need to review countless hours of video generated each day by CCTV cameras, research and identify incidents rapidly, and take necessary action.

For the IFSEC trade show, BriefCam created a two-hour long training video about a bank robbery entitled Cops n’ Robbers. Following processing, the resulting Video Synopsis is only 40 seconds long yet presents every single event that happened during those hours.

The synopsis is made possible by simultaneously presenting all events, even if they occurred at different times. The human operator then reviews the synopsis and makes the judgment calls.

During IFSEC, attendees are invited to visit BriefCam at the Milestone Systems stand (Hall 4, Booth F90), try out Video Synopsis, run the demo, identify incidents and answer five questions as quickly as they can.

Each day of the exhibition, the top high scorer will win two VS Online channels for Milestone.

BriefCam further announced that its VS Online product is one of the six finalists at the IFSEC Security Industry Awards 2010 in the category of CCTV System of the year. The awards ceremony takes place on May 10.

Global Emergency Management deploys security teams to protect critical infrastructure in Nashville, TN

Nashville, TN

With local residents scrambling to save their cherished belongings, and the threat of the Cumberland River continuing to swell and fill the streets of Nashville, TN with muddy water, the elite security teams of Global Emergency Management were mobilized and deployed to provide security services to critical infrastructure and healthcare.

According to William McGuire, President and CEO of the Global Elite Group, “Our Domestic Global Intelligence Group had been monitoring the situation on the ground for about 48 hours, advising our clients on new developments and notifying them that we had teams on standby for deployment when needed.”

“Once we received the go orders, our New York command center was able to position two dozen of our highly trained security agents with boots-on-the-ground within 12 hours of notification. Seasoned teams from North and South Carolina are now in place assisting with securing several facilities, as well as ensuring the safety of hundreds of customers and staff.”

Global Elite Group (GEG) is provides emergency management, event security, aviation security and executive protection. Best known for its work with national and international airlines at 10 locations in the U.S. and overseas, GEG provides daily security operations, on-going security design protocols, updates and training.

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