The time of watching hours of grainy video surveillance to try and piece together all the facts of an incident should be over. When watching the local news, it never ceases to amaze me what type of video surveillance systems businesses still use to protect their employees and property. Low quality “dumb” cameras can’t detect the difference between a person or a leaf blowing across the frame. The good news is that the technology is now here to upgrade your once traditional “reactive” camera system (watching film after something bad happens) to “proactive” camera system (giving real-time alerts, smart searching, etc.), using video analytics.
What are Video Analytics?
Video analytics use an algorithm to process data from a camera or recording to perform a special security function. Some examples of these analytics are:
- A trip wire/crossing a line
- People counting
- Picking up or leaving an object behind
- Facial Detection
- Fall Detection
- Heat mapping
When an incident like the above happens, a user is alerted in real time and can decide what type of action they would like to take. The alerts can come via email, texts and phone calls, apps, or screen alerts if the user is in front of a computer screen. Allowing the user to make real-time decisions can help protect people and property more quickly by alerting authorities, locking down a building, or notifying all employees of a potential threat.
In addition to the analytics for safety, data mining from the video system also allows for artificial intelligence to learn and alert based on behaviors it has recorded. Heat mapping, people searching, and license plate identification are all examples of AI learning from video data.
Imagine a retail store using a heat map analytic to watch the flow of customer traffic in a store. They can use that data to see where customers are most likely to gravitate, and which areas of the store hardly get any traffic. Using this data allows businesses to adjust marketing, product locations, and more. In addition, analytics can also let the store know what the average wait time is at the register and notify the store manager to open more registers if it exceeds that time.
Facial recognition and people searching are vital to assist with real-time incidents. Video surveillance systems allow for a smart search for a specific individual based on gender, color of clothes, and hair color. This allows for the system to scrub through video to find someone that fits the description. Once that individual has been identified in the system, all videos with that person can be immediately viewed to determine the next steps of action. It used to take hours to days to go through all video recordings to identify a person of interest. This can now be done in seconds.
I have just scratched the surface of types of video analytics in video surveillance. There are a lot of helpful and creative analytics available for your business and at Heartland Business Systems we will work with you to find the best video surveillance solution.
About the Author
Engineering Services Manager - Cabling and Physical Security
Matt has been in the cabling and physical security profession for over 15 years. He focuses on consulting with customers to ensure the safety of their employees and assets. He manages the cabling and physical security team across all Heartland locations.