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PSIFebruary2017

VIDECON LTD TRADE ONLY

VIDECON LTD TRADE ONLY SECURITY DISTRIBUTOR THERE SHOULD BE NO SECURITY FEARS WHEN INSTALLING A SECURITY SYSTEM Since April 2016 Concept Pro Network Video and the Analogue High Definition recorders have been using Secure European Based Servers to ensure that all your customer data is protected. Concerns that third parties could gain access to the connection details of any machine and view images remotely was raised by a number of our customers working with government bodies, private business and individuals. We took these comments on board and view this measure as an absolute necessity and one that allows our customers to have the peace of mind that their installations were secure. P2P networking makes it simple for installers to configure mobile viewing of the Concept Pro Recorders on smartphones and tablets. Installers simply activate mobile viewing by scanning the QR code on the unit into the Concept Pro app (available for Android and iOS devices free of charge) connecting through the server straight to the NVR.

SECURITY Recognising potential As the industry continues to evolve, is there room for voice recognition in the security sector? While banks and others have tried out voice identification, the use of using voice commands for electronic technology seems to be gaining ground in the consumer market.... Pic: Amazon History is littered with examples of technology that either didn’t hit the right mark with consumers or was not quite the success that the manufacturer had hoped for. Even the security industry has experienced this with the ‘toe in the water’ trialling of 3D CCTV at IFSEC one year. Other more common examples have been robot vacuum cleaners (when will developers give up on that one?), smokeless cigarettes and electric carving knives. Sometimes it’s a new upgrade that doesn’t do the business such as we saw with Microsoft’s Vista OS or New Coke in the 80s. The latest ‘big thing’ to hit the market is the Amazon Echo system which brings a voice controlled, web enabled unit into homes for the automation and control of various comforts (lighting, heating etc) and also web information without the need for hardware. The unit is also directly linked to Amazon media services allowing users to access a library of entertainment as well as access to a variety of shopping delivery outlets and apps. The Echo was listed as the biggest selling item on Amazon over the festive period in 2016 which is some feat, boosted by the fact that the company had reportedly already sold over 5 million units before November. The system works via the help of a ‘virtual assistant’ called Alexa; you simply start a question with the word Alexa and the system recognises this as a request for help. For example, “Alexa, what time is the next train from Huntingdon to St. Neots?” There are many experts in the market, as proven by the number of enabled products announced at recent technology exhibitions in the US, who see voice activation, and specifically Alexa as being the next major platform for the control of all electronic devices. But before we get ahead of ourselves let’s first deal with the inevitable elephant in the room, the negative press that comes with any new device - and this particular problem, like many other incidents before it is down to user error or simply not understanding the product and how to change from the default settings. The problem, says recent reports, is down to the voice activation technology and the fact that, unless you go into ‘settings’ and change the default position, the unit can misinterpret what you are saying into a request for you to buy something. Surely not you say? Well it has (apparently) happened and it’s quite comical how the story has developed. First off a mum was shocked to take delivery of a doll’s house and a box of biscuits from Amazon specifically because she hadn’t ordered them. It turns out that her Amazon Echo had misheard a comment made by her young daughter as beginning with the Alexa command and automatically placed an order for the items, which duly turned up. The mum then went to the news outlets with her story who lapped it up. Unfortunately anyone watching the TV reports in the same room as their own Echo also ended up taking delivery of a doll’s house and a box of biscuits as a result when the newsreader told the tale. At present the Echo unit does not distinguish between voices so anyone (or anything) in hearing distance of the unit can trigger an action if a word interpreted as Alexa is uttered. Stephen Cobb, a senior security researcher with ESET North America, told CW6 TV station in San Diego: “These devices don't recognise your specific voice and so then we have the situations where you have a guest staying or you have a child who is talking and accidentally order something because the device isn't aware that it's There are many experts in the market who see voice activation, specifically Alexa as being the next major platform for the control of all electronic devices www.psimagazine.co.uk 25

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