City security and law enforcement efforts are becoming increasingly dependent upon the availability of high bandwidth, low latency wireless data connectivity. Many city governments are working with 5G data network providers to extend the coverage and ensure network availability to emergency responders during an incident. The rollout of 5G in many areas has opened several possibilities that extend the reach and capabilities of law enforcement agencies. The fixed network capabilities are extensible. In addition, they pave the way for mobile and sometimes autonomous solutions that will ease the burden and extend the coverage that security forces can provide in the city environment.
Frictionless access control is already a reality, providing security personnel access to sensitive areas. For example, with automated gates and bollards, businesses might easily grant access to law enforcement personnel to provide security services in otherwise inaccessible areas. In addition, solutions such as license plate recognition (LPR), RFID tags, and facial recognition technology can give law enforcement officers access to secured areas more quickly than legacy technology has allowed.
Autonomous drones and self-driving vehicles are becoming a reality with modern technology and connectivity. NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, is testing unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) to patrol secure areas and demonstrating how such systems “can be used to assist in challenging or hazardous tasks such as perimeter surveillance or inspecting large structures.”
Autonomous vehicles are becoming more and more common. Recent news has detailed the encounter when traffic police stop a self-driving car with no driver or passenger on board. It may not be too long before we see autonomous police vehicles enforcing traffic laws. Clifford Winston, Senior Fellow in Economic Studies for the Brookings Institution, says, “Autonomous vehicles could virtually eliminate the need to use police resources to enforce traffic safety laws and more officers could concentrate on reducing the most serious criminal activity.”
Autonomous Security Robots (ASR), like those manufactured by Knightscope and Boston Dynamics, are an everyday staple in science fiction movies and video games. However, while viral videos of Boston Dynamics dancing robots have wowed viewers in recent years, businesses have begun to sit up and take notice when Spot, the robot dog, springs into action. So it’s no surprise that global automotive giant, Hyundai, acquired the company for $1 billion last year.
While autonomous robots are working in many different industries, Knightscope focuses on the security industry with its ultra-science fiction ASR, the K5. The cloud-connected robot “packs sensors like LIDAR (light detection and ranging) array and cameras that help it differentiate between a harmless passerby and potential criminal, and it feeds all that data to the cloud.” Knightscope robots can be found in banks, hospitals, or casinos, for example, while providing deterrence, physical presence, and evidentiary data when an incident happens.
While science fiction has displayed robots as both villainous and victorious throughout the years, robots extend the security footprint and help solve problems in business installations around the world. Whether these robots creep us out in weird videos as they dance to our favorite tunes or display their dexterous footwork on an obstacle course that amazes us and sparks our imagination, the daily grind is what robots always aim to accomplish. Moreover, robots work longer hours, make fewer mistakes, document, and alert the appropriate personnel if an incident captures their unwavering attention.
Autonomous security surveillance systems come in diverse forms and are deployable in various situations. When these systems integrate with Milestone System’s XProtect®, they can provide insights using video analytics, apply artificial intelligence to any captured data, and take appropriate action when necessary.
While we have dreamed of robotic capabilities for over a century now, smart cities and high bandwidth, low latency networks, and fast hardware and software processing make these dreams a reality in today's workplace and the public square.
Milestone’s XProtect open platform video technology provides a central user interface that makes managing video systems easier, allowing for an improved understanding of the data and better decision-making processes. XProtect also provides the system to trigger autonomous functions upon a matching set of criteria.