Today the job of a physical security integrator is more challenging than at any time over the last decade. “Convergence” of IT infrastructure and physical security solutions is complete. Not only is an IT decision maker or influencer directly involved, but cybersecurity is now a requirement for devices connected to the network.
There is a lot written these days about cybersecurity and the Internet of Things (IoT) regarding their impact on security integrators. I put the situation into the context of digital risk — our societal movement into the age of ones and zeros — which has redefined the concept of both business and personal security.
We are all collectively experiencing the proverbial “nightmare” scenario: a healthcare and business crisis [i.e. COVID-19] that got here in a flash and left us in a social distancing experiment. While change was forced upon us, I believe some of it will be positive moving forward.
ISC West 2013 and “convergence” have arrived. The vision of end-to-end security is a reality for the systems integrators who have rounded out their product lines, acquired internal skill sets, and strategically partnered to address it. The enabling technologies and price points are integrating end-to-end solutions and evolving security to new heights. Miniature sensors and mobile devices are the sophisticated endpoints driving unstructured data through faster networks and middleware to back-end storage and cloud architectures.
Security convergence is well-worn terminology describing our industry. However, the fact is that the physical security industry is not as quick to address new technologies and solutions as their IT peers. I believe this emanates from the justifiable conservative culture of an industry where the protection of lives, and not data, is priority number one.
The tech world is advancing the cloud model. This is a business reality. History repeats itself; last century companies shoveled coal and used water wheels to produce their own power to run the business until electric companies emerged.
A recent cover (Sept. 17, 2012) of InformationWeek highlighted the Top 500 Innovators and Rule Breakers. The article discussed new technologies like cloud computing, mobile devices and big data analytics as being critical to firms using IT to get closer to their customers. I was struck by the similarities to the future of security in general, and I wondered, “Who are the true innovators and rule breakers in our industry?”