Between canceled trade shows and all the bad news that 2020 has beckoned, you’re probably thinking, “thank goodness 2020 is about to end.” Although COVID-19 was a popular subject in our stories — it’s hard not to talk about the pandemic when it’s affected every part of our lives — the top SDM stories of 2020 also show resilience, innovation and growth despite the challenges of this year.

Here are our top stories of 2020:

2020 Top Systems Integrators Report: Strength in Numbers

Our number one story from this year is from our July 2020 issue and is an SDM feature that many in the industry look forward to every year: the Top Systems Integrators report. This year’s report showed that integrators are determined to adapt to the changes presented by COVID-19. Many of them talked about possibilities and opportunities for the rest of 2020, a testament to the positive and creative leadership at many of these companies.

2020 SDM 100 Report: After Peak Performance, What’s Next?

Our second most popular story from 2020 is another annual feature: the SDM 100. Published in May, this story explored how the 100 largest security dealers in the United States adapted to unforeseen challenges after a year of peak performance.

CPI Security Facing Backlash Over Alleged Racism

CPI Security, SDM’s 2000 and 2019 Dealer of the Year, faced backlash over allegedly racist remarks made by Ken Gill, CPI Security founder and CEO, in an email to a community organizer in Charlotte, N.C. In response, the Carolina Panthers, Charlotte Hornets, Charlotte Knights, NC State Athletics and Gamecock Athletics ended their partnerships with CPI. Gill apologized, and CPI listed institutional changes it will make in the wake of the backlash.

UTC Merges With Raytheon, Completes Spin-Offs of Carrier and Otis

In April, Raytheon Technologies Corporation announced that the all-stock merger between the company and United Technologies Corporation (UTC) had been completed. This merger followed the completion of the spin-offs of UTC’s Carrier and Otis businesses. UTC first announced its intention to separate its commercial businesses into independent entities on Nov. 26, 2018

State of the Market: Video Surveillance

From our February issue — before COVID-19 and quarantine — security integrators and manufacturers reflect on strong 2019 sales and positive expectations for 2020 in the video marketplace as the segment continues to mature and evolve.

ADT Facing Lawsuits After Employee Caught Spying on Customers for 7 Years

ADT faced two class action lawsuits in April after it was revealed that a Dallas, Texas-area service employee was spying on hundreds of customers over a period of seven years. The employee added his personal email to 220 ADT customer accounts using the Pulse app during service appointments, giving him access to their home security cameras. ADT says they learned of the violation when a customer called saying there was an unauthorized email on their ADT account. The company says it immediately began an internal investigation, and soon found the employee had done the same thing during service visits with other customers in the Dallas area. 

State of the Market 2020: Access Control

Access control is now more important than ever. Our April cover story talks about the state of the access control market, with changing architectures, changing customer expectations and demands, and changing security integrator roles.

Will Wise of Reed Exhibitions Comments on Changes Made to ISC West Show Due to Novel Coronavirus

Before ISC West was postponed to July and then moved to a virtual format in October, Will Wise of Reed Exhibitions discussed safety precautions to be taken place at the in-person event in March.

2020 Systems Integrator of the Year

The Systems Integrator of the Year is another SDM classic. With a focus on quality over quantity, Stone Security achieved phenomenal success and weathered the COVID-19 crisis without missing a step, exemplifying the overall resilience in the industry. 

Social Media Marketing in a Pandemic

This Marketing Madmen column from June discussed the best ways to communicate to your audience during the COVID-19 pandemic using social media, which, in an increasingly digital age, is an important platform to adopt.

No one knows what 2021 will hold for the security industry. Regardless, SDM will be there to report about it all.