In an increasingly technology-enabled world Genetec is setting new security benchmarks with advances in video surveillance through to cloud usage.
The company says the former of those is set to be further transformed as AI-driven analytics and automation redefine security operations – innovations it is pioneering with cutting-edge developments.
This is brought into greater focus as Genetec – a leading technology provider of unified security, public safety, operations, and business intelligence solutions – reveals results from its 2024 State Physical Security report.
It sought insights from almost 700 physical security leaders, including end users and channel partners based in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) markets, to examine security strategies that organisations are putting in place to effectively navigate the realities of a changing industry.
Firas Jadalla, Genetec’s regional director for Middle East, Turkey & Africa, forecasts a future where video surveillance won’t just be a tool but a strategic asset, with the UAE a case-in-point.
“The UAE’s strategic role as a global business hub highlights the crucial need for robust cybersecurity measures to protect businesses, government entities, and individuals from today’s fast-evolving cyber threats,” he says.
“With a rapidly advancing digital landscape, safeguarding sensitive data, critical infrastructure, and personal information has become imperative. As the country continues its digital transformation journey, a proactive approach to cybersecurity is vital for ensuring the integrity, confidentiality, and availability of digital assets.”
Genetec says it prioritises safeguarding customers’ physical security systems from potential vulnerabilities with its distinctive edge coming from utilisation of the company’s advanced Security Center platform, a robust solution designed to fortify devices against potential cyber threats.
“This platform unifies diverse security systems and data into a single interface, ensuring genuine integration and streamlined operations,” says Mr Jadalla.
“Our commitment extends to maintaining the resilience of our systems through robust encryption protocols, regular software updates, and diligent provision of patches to address emerging security risks.
“By adhering to industry standards and collaborating with cybersecurity experts, we ensure that our solutions remain at the forefront of resilience against cyber threats.
“This holistic approach provides our clients with confidence that their critical security infrastructure is not only secure but also well-protected against the dynamic landscape of cybersecurity challenges.”
Headquartered in Montreal, Canada, Genetec has been transforming the physical security industry since 1997 and today is a renowned and trusted name developing solutions designed to improve security, intelligence, and operations for enterprises, governments, and our communities.
Looking specifically at the adoption of cloud-based solutions for physical security, the State Physical Security report says this has been gradually increasing over the past decade and is now growing significantly.
The survey found that 40 per cent of end users reported more than 30 per cent of their physical security setups were now either in the cloud or use a combination of cloud and on-premises solutions.
At the same time, cyber concerns about cloud-based solutions are lessening significantly, underscoring growing confidence in the capabilities of cloud solution providers to establish robust cybersecurity measures.
“The adoption of the cloud in the physical security industry is steadily gaining prominence, with the future for most physical security solutions appearing to be a blend of on-premises and cloud-based solutions,” says Mr Jadalla.
“For organisations in the Middle East and Africa, combining hybrid cloud technology with what they have on-site allows them to respond to new business requirements promptly.
“These are exciting times for the industry as it embraces change and adapts to new ways of supporting customers to thrive in a dynamic landscape.”
AI technologies are a key ingredient in the Genetec offering; it uses a subset of AI called deep learning for purpose-built solutions that rely on identifying trends and dependencies between features present in the data itself.
Examples include hastening investigations by scouring video of a specific time period to find relevant footage; automating people counting; detecting vehicle license plates to track wanted vehicles, streamline employee parking or monitor city traffic flow; enhancing situational awareness to reduce false alarms and direct security operators to the most pressing situations; and analysing data from many different IoT (Internet of Things) sensors and various physical security and business systems to improve operations.
Mr Jadalla says that in recent years demand for video surveillance products in the Middle East has witnessed significant uptick, driven by growing emphasis on security and the rapid adoption of smart city initiatives.
“As urbanisation and infrastructure development surge, there’s an increased need for advanced video surveillance solutions to safeguard public spaces and critical infrastructure,” he says.
“Additionally, the integration of video analytics and AI-driven capabilities has become more prevalent, enhancing the overall effectiveness of surveillance systems.”
Genetec is set to play a key role amid the rise of smart cities across the Middle East as nations actively invest in transforming urban landscapes.
“Abu Dhabi ranks 13th globally on the IMD Smart City Index 2023, highlighting the UAE’s leadership, with multiple cities in the top 20,” continues Mr Jadalla.
“The NEOM project in Saudi Arabia further exemplifies the region’s dedication to innovation and urban planning. This growth positions the Middle East as a global smart city hub, reflecting a commitment to resilient, future-ready urban environments that enhance efficiency and sustainability while meeting evolving resident and business needs.”
Mr Jadalla says: “Genetec is poised to play a crucial role in this promising era…our vision revolves around contributing to the creation of safer, more efficient, and interconnected urban environments in the region.
“The shift towards smart city development is evident as nations channel significant efforts into transforming their economies from oil-based to knowledge-based models.
“Our goal is to empower our clients with the tools and capabilities necessary to thrive in the dynamic urban landscape of the future.”
The Genetec executive says the market is likely to see a continued focus on technological progress, with a surge in demand for high-resolution cameras, intelligent video analytics, and cloud-based solutions. The firm’s report revealed the physical security market is rapidly embracing cloud and hybrid solutions.
“Privacy concerns is another area that is expected to influence the adoption of privacy-centric technologies, striking a balance between security and individual rights,” continues Mr Jadalla.
“The convergence of video surveillance with other smart city components, such as access control and IoT devices, will likely be a key trend, fostering more holistic and integrated security ecosystems.”
The ability to customise solutions is another strength Genetec brings to the market.
“Customising security solutions for businesses in the UAE is a collaborative process that hinges on understanding each customer’s unique needs,” he explains.
“With many enterprise clients having sophisticated requirements, we closely collaborate to develop tailored features within our products. Recognising that security teams often underutilise their systems, we address the consumption gap by working with systems integrators.
“Beyond initial deployment, we assist in bridging this gap through training plans, ensuring customers maximise the full potential of their security investments.”
In conclusion, Mr Jadalla says the future of video surveillance is poised for transformative advancements – and Genetec is at the forefront of pioneering innovations.
“We foresee a landscape where AI-driven analytics and automation redefine security operations, enhancing both efficiency and effectiveness,” he says. “Genetec is committed to pushing these boundaries, introducing cutting-edge developments in the coming months.
“As we navigate the dynamic landscape of security technology, Genetec is poised to introduce solutions that not only meet the challenges of today, but also anticipate the needs of tomorrow, setting new benchmarks for the industry.”
He adds: “Stay tuned for a future where video surveillance is not just a tool but a strategic asset in ensuring the safety and security of communities and organisations.”
Updated: December 20, 2023, 9:19 AM