When Continuity Counts

Video systems are one way the financial market can leverage technology

Banks and financial institutions seeking a competitive edge increasingly look to technology to provide it. Video systems are one way the financial market can leverage technology to deliver valuable information for security while driving business efficiency and improving customer service.

For the financial market, a comprehensive, end-to-end IP video system can offer a proactive approach to security. Intelligent devices and security analytics, integrated with other systems and operating as a unified platform, represent security technology’s cutting edge for the financial sector, and many users are just beginning to test these new solutions. Integrated security analytics can simplify administration of video systems, expedite investigations and offer business tools and added intelligence. Powerful notification and response combined with real-time analytics offer a proactive approach to security management that this vertical market has never seen before.

Jim Drake, Navigant Credit Union facilities manager, Smithfield, R.I., is aware of the expanding capabilities of newer video systems, although budgets dictate how fast his organization embraces emerging new features such as video analytics and license plate recognition. “The possibilities are there,” he says. Longer term, Drake would like to integrate cameras, alarm notification and access control into a single system with everything communicating.

But above all, Drake expects a video system to be dependable. “Most importantly, I need it to work,” he says. “When we pull an image, I need to know it’s there and I can get to it.”

Financial institutions in the United States have embraced technology migration in security at various levels along a continuum reflecting the tens of thousands of bank branches and financial services locations around the country.

“There are many things competing for the same pool of dollars,” Drake says. “We are in the midst of a major data conversion and have expanded over the last year.” He believes Navigant Credit Union’s issues are typical of many small- to midsized financial institutions. “There are so many technology changes, so many compliance regulations. We have had such a busy year, and it’s difficult for a smaller organization to absorb all the costs of keeping up with regulations.”


Visible Cameras A Deterrent

Navigant Credit Union has 13 locations. Branches are typically around 4,000 square feet, featuring the usual configuration of drive-through lanes, ATMs, night depositories and other member-service areas. Cameras watch it all, with pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras “sweeping” the parking lots. Inside, cameras monitor who enters the vault lobby, and view each teller line. Cameras track all transactions, capture images of members signing documents at desks in the office, and see everything at the perimeter as well as entrances and exits. Semicovert cameras are used behind signs at teller stations that proclaim the credit union’s Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and National Credit Union Association (NCUA) affiliations; an average of 30 cameras operate at each location, including interior fixed cameras and exterior PTZ units.

“We do a pretty good job of making the cameras visible, and we use a public view monitor at the head of the queue line, so everyone knows they are being recorded,” says Drake. “It’s a deterrent; we want to make [targeting us] unattractive enough so that potential criminals don’t act.”

Building on a history of providing financial services to individuals and families throughout Rhode Island, Navigant Credit Union has served the Blackstone Valley area for more than 96 years. Now with 13 locations and more than $1 billion in assets, Navigant is among the largest credit unions in Rhode Island and one of the strongest in the country.

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