This article originally appeared in the August 2023 issue of Security Business magazine. When sharing, don’t forget to mention Security Business magazine on LinkedIn and @SecBusinessMag on Twitter.
I began my career by joining the United States Army and spent most of my time in the service overseas, running combat missions. My training and experience taught me the Castle Approach, or as we refer to it in the military, defense-in-depth (DiD). I can attest from years of experience that it is extremely effective.
Defense-in-depth is a security strategy or approach involving multiple layers of defense mechanisms to protect systems and assets from potential threats. Today, it is a concept often employed in cybersecurity but can also be applied to physical security and other domains.
The main idea behind the defense-in-depth is to create multiple lines of protection so that if one layer is breached or fails, other layers are in place to mitigate the risk and prevent further compromise. Each layer typically comprises various security controls, measures, and technologies, collectively providing comprehensive protection.
By employing multiple layers of security controls and practices, defense-in-depth helps to deter potential threats, detect unauthorized activities, and delay or mitigate the impact of security incidents. It recognizes that more than relying on a single security measure can be required, and a layered approach provides a more robust and resilient security posture.
For security integrators, Mobile Security as a Service (MSaaS) has proven to be significantly effective at providing reliable defense-in-depth in a portable package. These units can be rapidly deployed anywhere in the world, and are ideal for construction environments, special events, parking lots, and other high-risk security locations. Accompanying monitoring services can provide integrators with a steady stream of RMR.
The Benefits of MSaaS for Customers
MSaaS, when done correctly, provides far more benefits than a traditional human guard service. It comes at a lower overall cost with better reliability and less risk.
Security integrators offering MSaaS solutions should provide full-service remote and onsite delivery, setup, and support on every MSaaS unit. This can be subcontracted; however it is important to notify the end-user who is coming onto a property.
It is also important that the hardware utilizes NDAA-approved products, especially for government and law enforcement applications.
The benefits for customers include:
1. Self-sustained power and data, that can run on solar and/or fuel cells with shore power.
2. A redundant cellular smart modem finds and connects to the nearest tower, so it does not throttle a data plan; instead, it has a fixed cost and alerts to overages.
3. Real-time health monitoring of all devices ensures the entire system is constantly online and operational, and users always know where it is, and if it is being tampered with.
4. Deep Learning and object-based classification plus detection. MSaaS solutions “see” better than the human eye and never sleeps. Be sure to partner with experts to test and vet best-in-class open platform technology and use reliable solutions to detect what the end-user wants to catch, while limiting false alerts to events such as small animals or trees blowing in the wind. We know that false alarms cannot be tolerated, so we continuously invest countless hours in selecting only the best technologies.
5. Dynamic audio is a key component of deterrence. Potential bad actors know they are being seen and monitored by dynamically speaking to them over 130-decibel loudspeakers in real-time. We remote test and calibrate the speaker systems, ensuring 100% uptime and saving costs in deploying service engineers.
6. Dynamic lighting technology changes color and intensifies based on the time of day, object, or event. For example, when smart cameras see a crowd gathering, the lighting will dynamically change color, audio chimes/voice will be introduced, and alarms will be sent.
7. UL Listed central station monitoring, which includes video verification and live talk-down, are key to events where police must be dispatched. Security operators can communicate directly with law enforcement in real-time with eyes on the scene. This is also a key component of the recurring revenue aspect for integrators.
8. They are affordable: Hardware providers can offer both CapEx and OpEx mobile unit options, which can be customized to fit a particular customer’s needs and budget.
9. Bolt-on additional technologies and services, such as people counting, time-in-area analysis, and weapons detection can be easily added to a mobile security unit.
Additional Tips for Integrators
Integrators who choose to offer MSaaS solutions should choose and open platform solution, with reputable Soc 2 Type II certification.
Each unit should have an accompanying support agreement to ensure 100% uptime and effectiveness. To maximize the true benefits, it is imperative that your support team has an in-depth understanding of high-end analytics and know that, like anything, you must minimize false positives by testing and subsequently deploying only the best, most reliable hardware and software.