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Enhanced security in student dormitories with the latest technology

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Access control and video surveillance are important methods for securing student residences on university campuses.

Access control systems, video surveillance, and emergency notification systems are standard on most college campuses, but many security teams work with disparate or outdated systems that are inadequate, overly complex, and costly. doing. Upgrading systems can be expensive, but moving to a modern, integrated security platform can significantly improve the overall effectiveness of these systems and reduce total cost of ownership.

This includes dormitory security with its own complexities. Student residences not only add an extra layer of visitor access, but also raise privacy concerns. People expect different levels of privacy and anonymity in their homes, but spaces that are not properly monitored and protected can be taken advantage of by criminals.

The latest security technology allows campuses to reduce crime and theft in student residences. In addition, it not only helps public safety, resident livelihoods, and facilities departments operate more efficiently, but also helps protect individual privacy.

Access control kicks off student dormitory upgrade

One of the first components to consider in a student residence is the access control system (ACS). Most campuses have moved from the old brass locks to electronic access controls. Modern systems allow more control and secure access to selected rooms and doors. Integrate with video surveillance to dramatically reduce nuisance alarms and monitor anyone entering or leaving these areas with specific credentials.

The switch from key fobs to cell phone credentials often appeals to college students. Students rarely leave their homes without their mobile phones, reducing the chances of lost keys or break-ins using stolen cards or key fobs. Instead, students can use an app on their phone with their credentials to easily access their dorms.

But students aren’t the only ones who have to live in dormitories. These buildings are also accessed by visitors, delivery personnel, facilities, maintenance staff, and security guards.

With a digital identity management system, you can grant full access permissions to selected staff and contractors for specific days and times when they are scheduled to work. An automated process can also be put in place to grant temporary access to visitors or couriers based on credentials set in the system.

Enhanced Visual Surveillance with Video Surveillance

Video surveillance is also an important layer of technology as it helps security teams see beyond residential buildings. Security staff can monitor what is happening in parking lots and public spaces to understand the flow of people and efficiently take investigative action to respond to incidents.

Privacy is especially important in student dormitories. New video management technology can be configured to automatically blur or pixelate faces in video footage to protect student privacy. When an incident occurs and investigators need to identify people who were present or nearby, the team can ensure that only authorized people can view the original footage without pixelation. increase. It also allows full reporting on who requested access to video footage.

Ideally, the video system works hand in hand with access control. However, in many legacy installations the two often work independently. If the security team manages two different systems for her, cross-referencing data such as a list of cameras and a list of doors can be time consuming. These teams may have spotted an intruder in the building and know its location, but finding the few seconds of critical video footage of the incident can be difficult.

Find the right video feed in seconds instead of hours with a unified platform. A system dashboard allows security personnel to see data from both cameras and control access within a unified view. If the door is left ajar, or if a student has lost the key and asks the door to be unlocked, the operator can easily view the live video directly from her map of campus to get a more accurate picture of the situation. can be read to response.

Related: 7 Takeaways from the Modern Campus Dorm Security Program

Video analytics allows teams to automate alerts of unusual activity before a suspicious person approaches the door. For example, if a camera detects a car going the wrong way or a group of individuals approaching a restricted area late at night, security can automatically alert her team with the appropriate protocols, making it easier to respond. can be judged.

Security systems can increase operational efficiency

Campus security teams can operate more efficiently with more tools to reduce nuisance alarms, remotely lock and unlock doors, and enable options to identify potential problems before a crisis ensues. Centralizing many systems on a unified display reduces the need for security personnel to monitor and manage these systems, reducing overall operating costs.

Teams can analyze data from various sources to gain key insights. For example, if the same door is always ajar in a dormitory room, staff can review relevant camera footage to determine whether it is a maintenance issue (door not closing properly) or an operational issue (someone is opening the door). support). open to let your friends in). This allows your team to quickly address issues before nuisance alarms waste resources. Identifying patterns in incident her reports and alerts also helps campus security personnel identify hot her spots of crime and behavior that can be mitigated in a variety of ways.

The key to getting the most out of your controllers, cameras, sensors, license plate readers, and other hardware investments is to connect them all through a unified software platform. This allows security teams to view and filter data from all devices in her one interface. Since the software is based on the same code, data and information can flow seamlessly between systems, and he can update one component or the entire system as needed. Training and onboarding is also easier because he has only one software for staff to learn.

find the right balance

Finding the balance between ensuring building safety and maintaining the flow of campus visitors, students, and faculty is not always easy, but the right solutions can help. A unified platform gives campus security teams greater visibility and control over their environment. This ultimately helps improve the safety of students and staff traveling between classrooms, dormitories and cafeterias on campus.

Rick Taylor is the National Director of Public Sector at Genetec Inc.