Video Surveillance & Physical Security Industry Viewpoints
June 20th, 2017

When time is of the essence, so is video analytics: from reactive to proactive

The recent advances in video analytics technology are revolutionizing security and facilitating the ability to turn video data into useful information for fast, accurate and proactive security management.

Optimize reactive investigation

When it comes to security, speedy response is essential. While video surveillance has always been a key resource for security organizations and police units, traditionally timing hasn’t been the strong suit of this medium. Watching video from surveillance cameras is time-consuming and tiring, making it difficult for viewers to focus and to identify threats as they develop. In fact, Accenture estimates that, after twenty minutes of reviewing surveillance footage, 95% percent of incidents are likely to be missed, while 98% of footage is never viewed.

With video analytics based on VIDEO SYNOPSIS® technology, investigators can overcome the limitations of timing that have inhibited their reliance on video footage in the past. The ability to watch hours of video in minutes and to see all video events and objects simultaneously, means that a single investigator can function as many. According to Hartford, CT Police Chief James Rovella “this is imperative, because we can’t have 30 people sitting, watching cameras” to quickly find targets and identify suspects. Furthermore, because synopsis indexes and classifies all the objects in the original footage, the investigator can apply filters to focus search criteria when looking for specific targets.

This also helps in cases when there is no known suspect, because the investigator can rapidly review footage to identify potential perpetrators. Suspicious behavior can be identified using heat maps, as well, which can be applied to detect loitering and movement in restricted areas.

Adopt proactive investigation

Oftentimes, the best course of action for security teams is to handle events as they unfold, and it’s not enough to simply review the footage. Today’s video analytics solutions offer real-time alerts for:

  • Improving situational awareness
  • Updating security personnel to suspicious behavior
  • Analyzing complex scenes quickly and effectively

This helps maintain safety and quickly restore security when it is disrupted.

In addition to real-time notifications, video analytics solutions can also offer statistical reporting, to give a high-level overview of activity and events in videos, enabling investigators to:

  • Automatically schedule reports to share work progress
  • Easily present investigation results in an organized manner
  • Identify key trends over time with statistics

All these lead to more proactive case management and more effective communication for security teams. But this isn’t the only way video analytics helps manage investigations more effectively, it also provides the tools to keep all security personnel informed and focused. The ability to quickly drill down to the exact details needed to solve a case, without tediously having to filter through extraneous data and footage, enables security teams to streamline their operations and work efficiently.

While we don’t often have the opportunity to view a video investigation side-by-side using different techniques, one thing that we do see from time to time is re-investigating offloaded video for cases that have been archived as unsolved.  Such cases can be solved faster by applying video analytics based on the VIDEO SYNOPSIS innovation.

Though on first glance you might think video could slow down investigative work, with advances in VIDEO SYNOPSIS technology and analytics, video has become an invaluable resource for solving crimes quickly and effectively, on the reactive and proactive level. Is the industry ready for the next level?

Stay tuned for my thoughts on predictive video analytics.