The security week that was: 10/31/08

ISC East Recap

For those of you who weren't at ISC East this week, I want to say that the traffic was quite good. The staff from one of the large security products distributors said they had about 300 qualified leads of dealers who visited their booth during the two day show. Their business development team said that was a very good number for ISC East compared to previous years. We noted previously that Wednesday (the first day) was booming in terms of aisle and booth traffic, and surprisingly, Thursday's show traffic stayed fairly strong until the afternoon.

Well, enough about the traffic of the show, let's get into some of the technologies and news around the show, since this week's recap will serve as a second ISC East report to yesterday's "show daily."

I made it by the booth of Phihong during the show to catch up with Keith Hopwood. Phihong was showing some great PoE products, and I was particularly interested in their system for powering up to four IP video devices. The product, called the POE60S-4AF, can send power over a single line and then splits that high-power line out to the four IP devices. That really simplifies the cabling since you wouldn't have to do four home-run powered lines. They had some other new technology as well, and one of the products shown can power illuminators and heaters in addition to cameras. If you're getting on the IP video trend, I would certainly recommend you head by their booth.

I also was able to catch up with Joe Troiano of EverFocus, who says the company's dealer loyalty program is gaining speed. The program is based around a common "points" type of system, and Troiano is working with the dealers as well as the distributors to ensure that enrolled dealers are getting the credit they deserve for EverFocus products. He also noted that the program is designed to help EverFocus refer leads to their dealers, and dealer members get marketing benefits and demo products discounts.

Identica, which does vascular biometrics, had their reader set up at the Idesco booth. This system studies the vein patterns on the back of your hand. According to Ayal Vogel, their EVP of global sales, the company is heavily promoting the vascular reader for the TWIC program at ports. I got a chance to enroll in this device, and it is amazingly easy to use. Vogel noted that they're in the process of adding a fingerprint reader to support the TWIC enrollment process.

Jeff Whitney from Intransa was showcasing their video storage solution. According to Whitney, they've found a strong reception for their "StarterBlock" 2 to 4TB (expandable up to 16TB) storage systems. These units can be configured to support edge recording and/or storage. Users can record IP cameras directly to these units, or they can be used (more commonly) as a storage upgrade for DVRs, making stored video available on the network. The value on these units is that the data is managed in a RAID format to ensure redundancy, and each StarterBlock could potentially support up to eight NVRs/DVRs.

Silent Knight (part of Honeywell) is out with new products called the IFP-2000 and the RPS-2000. These are scalable, networkable, UL 9th-approved fire panels. Advantages for the installing fire systems dealer is that these systems allow existing Silent Knight dealers to get into the campus environment and tackle larger jobs. These panels can be networked (up to eight IFP-2000 panels in one configuration, without needing more than one primary and secondary path). A system for a network of eight IFP-2000's can support up to 5,088 points, and the devices can be connected with or without repeaters depending on how close the panels are located. The RPS-2000 is essentially the same as the IFP-2000 without the display.

More Honeywell fire related technology was available over at Fire-Lite Alarms. Hot for ISC East was an IP fire panel communicator. The advantages of this type of communicator is that it allows a fire systems service provider/dealer or the end-user managing the fire system to remotely log in and do things like upload or download to the panel, check detector sensitivity readings and examine trouble alarms. The IP communicator works on any panel that uses the Contact ID protocol, so it's not just limited to Fire-Lite's panels.

I also saw GarrettCom (networking products) unveiling a new software product to ensure network recovery for managed switches. The GarrettCom products are particularly well suited for networking in an industrial environment. Also on the floor was a company called Identity Stronghold, which has card-holding sleeves and cases to block the so-called "sniffers" that are designed to surreptitiously read prox and smart cards.

Of course, there's a lot more technology and information available at these shows, but that's where my report ends. If you're in the NY area, definitely check out next year's show when it rolls around again.

Finally, we close with a look at the most popular stories of the week: