How A Control Room Is Used To Provide Remote Monitoring Solutions

A control room or remote monitoring centre is a technology-led command and control centre where live or recorded video streams as well as electronic alarm notifications are managed by a team of round-the-clock virtual security guards or officers.

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A control room or remote monitoring centre is a technology-led command and control centre where live or recorded video streams as well as electronic alarm notifications are managed by a team of round-the-clock virtual security guards or officers.

The dawn of the Internet has paved the way for many legacy or traditional security services, which initially required a local site presence for effective protection, to be replaced by modern remotely managed services like video surveillance or cctv.

This shift in the way services are provided has also led to a huge reduction in security overheads as fewer guards are now required to monitor multiple sites at the same time with the aid of advanced monitoring hardware and software systems.

And as the technology continues evolve, more security providers are now able to manage a wider range of security services from a control room like remote gate keeping, remote key holding and remote alarm response at any time of the day or night, without deploying a local presence.

A typical control room is normally located in a secure location or enclosure away from main stream areas where it can not easily be identified or breached. More advanced control rooms also usually have business recovery and continuity sites in a second location should the main one be compromised in any way.

Traditional control rooms were predominantly filled with multiple tv screens that would be visually monitored for any anomalies before any radio or telephone calls would be made to local enforcement authorities to attend site and mitigate identified risks.

More recent control rooms now have advanced video and alarm management software along with modernised video or alarm signal generation devices that are able to automatically detect and relay video or data signals within seconds of a breach.

Virtual security guards or control officers also now have the ability to proactively monitor a number of services deployed on one site or replicated on several others at the same time without the need to constantly stare at the screens for any potential breaches.

Video surveillance, also commonly known as cctv or virtual guarding, is a key service that probably influenced the overall structure and set-up of a control room. Strategically placed security cameras are configured to detect and immediately send alarm signals back to a control room for visual verification.

Remote concierges or remote gate keepers can now also be found in a control room working in tandem with key, card or biometric readers and electronically operated turnstiles, gates, doors or barriers to grant or deny access to a restricted area at any time of the day or night.

Intrusion detection, which primarily uses motion or heat sensors to detect a potential intrusion, is another common service that can now be successfully remotely managed from a control room especially for less complex site deployments.

Heat, gas, smoke and temperature detection services can now also be remotely managed from a control room. These services will typically detect fire and health hazards before they can cause any significant damage to people or premises.

Floods can also be remotely detected with the aid of specialised flood detection devices which use water level sensors in and around vulnerable areas of building enclosures with sensitive water or drainage transportation systems.

Mask and hard-hat detection services are also available with more recent analytic software and hardware systems which usually work in tandem with intelligent cameras or readers to detect and identify anyone without a hard hat or face mask.

Fall detection, pulse detection and location tracking services can now also be easily managed from a control room especially for people who may be vulnerable to attack, abuse, abduction or health scares like VIPs, infants, lone workers, patients and the elderly.

Sound detection services, which detect abnormal audio or sound levels can also be managed from a control room. Specialised sound detection devices or cameras can be placed in and around a vulnerable area to detect unusual sound levels at any time of the day or night.

Call or query handling services can also be provided via emergency numbers placed on contact boards or via video intercom devices or readers with calling capabilities on sites that anticipate queries or enquiries about their site especially out of normal working hours.

Some aspects of the key holding service which has traditionally required a local presence can now also be remotely managed on sites with some form of remotely assisted door, gate or turnstile to grant access to subcontractors working out of hours or alarm responders mitigating a reported potential threat.

Some institutions like banks, councils, malls, cinemas and supermarkets which typically have their own in-house command and control centres can now also use local security control rooms as business continuity or disaster recovery centres in the event of an attack or incident that would compromise their own.

Any alarms raised in connection with any of these services are usually analysed in a matter of seconds before further action to respond to them is taken. A remotely administered verbal response may resolve the issue for minor cases while the persistent ones may require a local reinforcement by designated authorities.