By Destiny Heimbecker, Marketing Manager for Vistacom
Student safety is always a priority, but it becomes even more scrutinized whenever something tragic happens to shatter any sense of security the public may feel. Schools should be a safe haven. Increased incidents of violence, as well as other brawls, thefts, and safety issues show how much administrators need to do to keep their campus communities safe.
All of this is driving the need for organizations to put in place a more formal and aggressive security plan, including a more robust and well-organized focus on security infrastructure, early detection, and response to threats, and a more proactive approach in general.
Redefining Campus Security
In the ongoing effort to increase the safety on campus, many schools are supporting the development and use of technologies that provide better information on threats and vulnerabilities, improve response times for emergency personnel, facilitate communication between citizens and police, and even predict outcomes for a variety of emergency scenarios. Some of these technologies include:
· Digital Signage is an important tool for crisis management. ‘Prevention Campaigns’ can play on all signage during regular days. Wayfinding integration can inform users of fire escape routes. The Haivision CoolSign “Campus Signage Unlimited” program allows for unlimited access to server and player technology which provides event information, wayfinding, schedule and booking information, menu boards, advertising, news broadcasts, policy and conduct, emergency alerts, and public safety information.
· Mass Notification Systems capabilities in higher education facilities have evolved significantly over the years. From fire alarms and internal PA systems, current mass notification systems have morphed into intricate systems that communicate emergency messages via Voice mail, E-mail, text messaging, instant messaging and social media updates. Biamp’s Vocia fits a wide range of installation sizes because every component contains memory and processing resources that communicate intelligently across the network.
· Video monitoring has long been used for security at colleges and universities. The need for video surveillance has led to Security Operation Centers becoming more common on campuses. This technology is able to provide such things as cross-campus, real-time video monitoring, intrusion alerts from access control, and email notifications from communication systems all from one location. The Vistacom SecureView™ powered by Barco’s TransformN, is an all-in-one video wall solution that provides a best-in-class video wall for security operations at a cost-effective price point.
· Campus Safety with Networked Services such as the Cisco Safety Solutions for Higher Education make it easy for colleges and universities to use the power of their IPnetwork to enhance campus safety. Voice interoperability benefits the entire campus- from the president who can communicate with public safety personnel from home during a hurricane, to students locked out of their rooms, or anyone on campus who experiences an injury and needs emergency medical services
Colleges and universities realize the decision of how to acquire technology and services is just as critical as the investment decision itself. Knowing your options and how they can work together are your first steps to an effective campus wide security plan.