Reflecting on the past, planning for the future!
The last 10 years have seen quite a transformation in the security sector. As well as specific advances in technology, wider trends such as the move to online-based systems continue to transform the industry. Excitingly, these are just the tip of the iceberg – with security technology showing no signs of deviating from its evolutionary trajectory!
TDSi was established in 1982 has been at the vanguard of security technology since, but the last 10 years have really seen impressive changes in the industry and technology as a whole. When you look towards the future, it is also worth revisiting the past to see how just how rapidly technology can develop.
The last 10 years
Integration is the biggest legacy of the last 10 years. Of course the drive to fully integrate security systems within a facility has been going on much longer. By current standards, with our online connectivity, this was low-level integration indeed.
It wasn’t so long ago that the majority of security systems were disparate from one another, even struggling to share standardized cabling. A lot of these problems originated through standards legislation – or often a lack of it!
I can proudly say that TDSi was one of the first security experts to strive for a solution. With agreed standards in place, you can design and manufacture systems with a greater level of compatibility – even from different providers. If you told a security provider in the 1990s that you wanted to make your products compatible with everyone else’s they would have thought you were mad! But there was always a bigger picture, if your product works well with others it becomes a selling point or unique reason to buy, offering the market greater choice and flexibility – which will always be popular.
We are living in an age where online hyper connectivity is a reality. TDSi, like many providers now invests substantially in software development. Whilst the physical barriers and security may look conventional, the intelligence behind them is heavily linked to logical and IT security.
The evolution of existing technologies continues, for example facial recognition technology (once the preserve of science fiction) has become highly reliable, usable and affordable. MIFARE access cards technology has also received a welcome boost with MIFARE Plus - an upgrade that significantly beefs up the security credentials but maintains the flexibility and affordability that made it so popular.
Overall, the market expects full integration options, so providers must offer it. Many systems now use an IP connection instead of older cable networking – which gives greater flexibility, more choice and often saves on expensive new cabling, using existing connections whenever possible.
The next 10 years
Apart from maybe having a crystal ball, it’s difficult to predict the future accurately. Even at TDSi we didn’t predict just how fast online connectivity would take off! We expect ‘The Internet of Things’ to be the next big development.
This will be important for commercial buildings and their security measures, but equally security could well become part of the mix in smart homes – which was the recent focus of a BBC article. Having all your technology working together through your personal network makes a lot of sense from a practicality point of view.
It also raises questions over security – if your physical security is linked to your network and a lesser protected device leads to a breach, could this compromise all of your property?! As with all new developments, undoubtedly this will be a major consideration for the security industry moving forwards. How to embrace the benefits, whilst maintaining an objective and sensible view is something us security experts know all about!