Nice Systems lands San Diego utilities installation

April 11, 2013
Integrated PSIM and VMS solution to protect water supply

NICE Systems announced as ISC West Wednesday that the City of San Diego Public Utilities Department has chosen to implement the supplier’s Situator PSIM and NiceVison Net Video Management System to help secure its water supply.

“We started 13 years ago with a mandate to protect the city’s water supply,” explained Tony Ruiz, public utilities security administrator for the City of San Diego. “As we expanded, we realized we needed something to manage all these subsystems.”

According to Ruiz, that’s where the PSIM system came into play. It now helps protect nearly 250 different facilities—from office space to water and wastewater treatment plants, to unmanned facilities. The PSIM enables the San Diego utilities security team to “identify trespassers in real time and be able to act on it,” Ruiz explained. Operators can make the response in real time, and will be prompted by the system to contact the appropriate law enforcement agency (of which there are many in the San Diego area). “You don’t have to think about anything,” Ruiz adds about response with the PSIM’s help.

San Diego is California's second largest city and the eighth largest in the U.S., with 1.3 million residents. The Public Utilities Department oversees one of the largest and most complex water storage, treatment, and delivery systems in the country. The first phase of the security project focuses on integrating the VMS and access control, with additional sensor integration planned for future phases. The solution will enable the City of San Diego to consolidate subsystems and sensors across sites, correlate that information, automate effective response plans, and provide insights to various stakeholders. 

“The system doesn’t take a vacation,” Ruiz said. “With these types of systems, false alarm rates are down, and training operators — which used to take 6 months, has been reduced to two days. We won’t have to worry about the training expense.”

Editor's Note: Municipal surveillance applications are a key focus for Cygnus Security Media's Secured Cities conference. To register or find out more about the upcoming event, please visit

On a side note, when company officials were asked about the rumored acquisition talks between NICE and Verint at the Wednesday press conference, they offered no comment.

About the Author

Paul Rothman | Editor-in-Chief/Security Business

Paul Rothman is Editor-in-Chief of Security Business magazine. Email him your comments and questions at [email protected]. Access the current issue, full archives and apply for a free subscription at