The Security Week That Was: A Recap - Jan. 27-Feb. 2, 2007

These last couple days have allowed me to cover a topic that's increasingly coming up in the consumer press -- it's the concern that RF technology (as found in supply chain RFID, PayPass credit card technology and in smart card access control) will be leaking personal information.

The challenge for our industry is that if the public becomes distrustful of this technology, it will absolutely affect your ability as systems integrators and as corporate security managers to implement this technology. As we all know, there are very different levels of technology at play here. The technology that goes in a pallet's RFID tag is little more than a digital UPC code, while the technology we use for access control systems, of course, is encrypted and highly secure. Nonetheless, our industry faces a big challenge of being able to tell that story to consumer world.

On that note, the Smart Card Alliance released its RF-technology Best Practices, a document which addresses privacy issues that will hopefully start our industry down that road to greater awareness. There are government relations staff members at some of the top technology providers who are working on these issues as well, so the evangelization is beginning. Be on the lookout early next week for an SIW Radio podcast that should be required listening for this subject. In the meantime, you can access the Smart Card Alliance's RF Technology Best Practices PDF document here.

Down, Set, Hut
Super Bowl Security shapes up

Security Dealer editor-in-chief Susan Brady filed a report on what is being done to secure Super Bowl XLI, which is coming this Sunday in Miami. While many of the internal processes fall under the "loose lips sink ships" rule, her report on Super Bowl security is a great read for anyone involved in venue protection, or who just shares an interest in whether it will be the Bears or Patriots who come out on top.

Coming Soon: A How-To Magazine for Installers
Security Dealer launching spin-off publication Security Technician

Security technicians and alarm company owners who want to get their hands on a complimentary magazine (to U.S. subscribers) that features the technical, "how-to" of installing security and surveillance, can register over at our webpage: If you want multiple copies of this forthcoming magazine to distribute to your technicians, simply email Publisher Peter Harlick via the link on that page. Current subscribers to the magazine Security Dealer can update their subscription to include this new publication.

People in the News
New leadership at Fargo and Vidient

David Sullivan of HID Global has been named to serve as president of Fargo Electronics, an HID Global company. Over at intelligent video provider Vidient, the new CEO will be Steve Goldberg, who brings years of Silicon Valley management experience. Founder and previous CEO Brooks McChesney is staying with the company to lead technology partnerships.

Alarm Monitoring Competition Gets Stiff in Canada
Cellular and landline company Bell Canada gets in the mix

Bell Canada, a telephone and cellular phone services provider in Canada, announced this week that it was entering the security alarm monitoring market. The company is unveiling a simple home security system that would communicate over Bell Canada's existing wireless communications routes. The move is designed to "offset the losses of home phone lines, which is a trend that is affecting all service providers around the world," according to telecom analyst Kevin Restivo of the SeaBoard Group.

On the Horizon
Oak Ridge National Labs looks at internal waterway security

Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Knoxville, Tenn., may be known for its nuclear research, but it's also dipping its hand into security and asset tracking. A new project from the lab will look at real-time monitoring of cargo vessels on internal waterways -- which could be anything from valuable goods to nuclear materials (hence the connection with ORNL). This area creates much more than classic country music; it's the same lab and engineering area that spawned the private firm IPIX so many years ago.

Finally, we close with a review of what your peers are reading -- our Most Read Stories of the Week: