Canary Flex is a small, weatherproof security camera

Canary Flex

Canary Flex

Security cameras are slowly making their way out of your house and onto your porches and yards. Canary Flex is following the footsteps of rival Nest by launching a new, smaller weatherproof camera called the Flex that can be plugged into an outlet or powered by batteries. It’s available for pre-order today for $199 and will be in stores by the holidays. Canary is also introducing a new pricing model that is pretty different from what’s on the market, but we’ll get to that in a bit.

Rated IP65, the Canary Flex can withstand splashes of water, and thanks to the included weatherproof cord, it can remain plugged in even when it’s wet. If you’d like to go wireless, you can use the bundled rechargeable battery, which should last two to three months of average use, the company said. When it’s running on batteries, the Flex runs on a low power WiFi state to stay connected to the servers without sucking up juice, and also uses a passive infrared (PIR) sensor to detect incidents before triggering the rest of the system. Otherwise, the Flex uses the camera (or “computer vision,” as Canary called it) to monitor activity when plugged in. When triggered, the Canary Flex will record HD video to the cloud.

Unlike its predecessor, the Canary Flex is compact, and fits comfortably in your hand so you can easily move it around should you need to. It also has a magnetic base that lets it swivel 360 degrees in its companion mount. However, you’ll lack the siren that the original camera had, as well as what Canary called the home health sensors. The latter relay feedback on your house’s temperature, humidity and air quality. Those who already own the older Canary camera can use the same app with the new device, and no hub is required.

To make it easier to place the Flex around your house, Canary is also launching a series of accessories, such as a secure mount, a stake mount to stick your camera in your flower pot, and a fun twist mount to wrap your Flex around almost anything.

For those who want complete peace of mind, Canary  is also launching a 4G LTE mount with Verizon that will let your Flex switch to cellular data in the event that your WiFi network drops out. The 4G mount can be plugged in, but also has enough onboard battery to last as long as the Flex’s power pack will. This would be great for those who want to prepare for power outages. It’ll be available shortly after the Flex hits store shelves.

One of the coolest things about this launch is Canary Flex ‘s new pricing model that does away with the industry’s conventional tiers system altogether. Instead of making you pay more to store more of your footage like competitors do, Canary is letting you access the last 24 hours of your timeline for free. That’s twice the 12 hours it previously let nonpaying customers have.

The company is also removing its previous limits on features such as saving and downloading clips, as well as sending them to other contacts. Those who want more support can pay $9.99 a month for one device ($15 for two to three cameras), and that membership will come with up to $1,000 in homeowners deductible reimbursement (for qualifying incidents), as well as dedicated agents who will follow you through your your incident report process. Members also get extended warranties and access to footage from the prior 30 days.

That’s quite a big bump from the free version, and could give Canary Flex a serious edge over its competitors. Both Nest and Canary’s devices cost $199, but the latter says it is working on a more personable approach to security that could make its outgoing alerts more meaningful. Some of these upcoming improvements include refined object, people and animal recognition, as well as better understanding of new versus repetitive motions. These changes will soon roll out to the Canary app as well. In the meantime, you may want to finetune your security camera settings so you’re not getting buzzed for every time your neighbor’s dog jumps, or for random tree branches smacking against your window.

Article Provided By: engadget

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Drones Doing Bad; Drones Doing Good (Part 2)

Drones

Drones (continued) – Innovative User-Defined Fields

According to Wydner, the system, which was installed by security systems integrator Steve Murphy of Chown Security, Portland, Oregon, had to not only work with existing HID Global identification cards used by students across campus; it also had to have an easy-to-access user repository. “A key feature that really helped us was the ability to add in user-defined fields because we needed to have our own unique key,” Wydner says.

The innovative charm of the access system’s technology, however, is its hand- shaking with other software platforms for a completely interoperable access and room reservation system. To accomplish this, Wydner and his team installed the data management engine (Pinwheel DME from SwiftData Technology). Pinwheel integrates data from the access system along with several other enterprise software solutions employed at the facility, including sophisticated room scheduling, Web calendar and online event registration software (from Dean Evans & Associates) and an enterprise resource planning platform from higher education software provider Ellucian.

However, there were several significant hurdles that had to be overcome by both the OSU IT group and others involved to help make these interoperability goals a reality. An integration of this magnitude had never been done before, so much of the project was uncharted water, comments Murphy. “We didn’t know quite where to begin,” Wydner adds. “We knew that we needed to get all of the user data – our faculty, staff members, and students. We needed some way of defining who is taking a college business class and which system we were going to pull that out of, whether that’s going to be our central student repository, Active Directory or if we were going to go off of Salesforce.”

Wydner said the university eventually decided the best way to bring this information together was to enter it into Salesforce, the San Francisco, California-based firm known for its Web customer relationship management system and its strength in application programming interfaces or APIs. He started a separate project focused on integrating the identification numbers from the campus HID cards into their Salesforce database. Aside from that, the team also had to figure out a way to format the data from Salesforce so that it would be recognized by the access and Dean Evans event management software solutions.

By using the Pinwheel data management engine or DME platform, students are now enrolled automatically based upon the information entered into the Ellucian enterprise resource planning system. The successful integration of these systems would not have been possible, however, without some of the unique features provided by the access control platform with its innovative way of combining the access levels of students and staff members with their respective rights and privileges through a process known as nesting.

Austin Hall also uses an automated lock system which saved significantly on time and manpower.

Door Access and Meeting Scheduling

“The main thing that our faculty and students enjoy about the integration is that they can just walk up to a project room or a meeting room [and] tap their OSU ID on the lock (AD-400 wireless networked locks from Schlage). It then opens up, lets them in, and it also gives them an automatic one-hour reservation on the room,” observes Wydner.

“Multi-tech locks are future-proof and access panels can handle up to 16 locks,” points out Murphy, who believes the project took system integration capabilities to new and innovative heights.

There are other tech trends embedded in such an approach, according to Mitchell Kane, president, Vanderbilt. As compared to security video, it may seem that advances in electronic access control emerge and evolve more slowly. From a hardware perspective, technology moves at a snail’s pace, says Kane. What is more innovatively important is the trend of interoperability with other systems and big data. Until recently, most data integration with access management was through HR or IT databases. Kane sees a trend toward integration with workflow applications, working with data on an automated level, based on logic and analytics.

The multifunctional ability can be viewed as innovative.

That’s the bottom line for Guy Grace, manager of security and emergency planning for the Littleton, Colorado, Public Schools, and who is installing a network-based communication and security system (the IX Series from Aiphone) featuring video entry security, internal communication, emergency stations, and paging. All units and apps in the systems can unlock doors remotely on a network, assist onsite visitors from an offsite location, broadcast emergency announcements and communicate using Power over Ethernet (PoE).

Among the “cool things we get from the technology is the intercom’s ability to record audio and video of visitors on our network digital video recorders or NDVRs. So now we have an extra camera, the ability to record all the transactions at the door in voice and video, the ability to talk to the door from the school and the security office miles away. And also these now can be used as a call for help stations 24/7,” says Grace.

Check Out Part 1

Article Provided By: Security

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Drones Doing Bad; Drones Doing Good (Part 1)

Drones

Drones Good or Bad?

A growing number of utilities, ports and stadiums though are concerned about the dark side of drones. For example, some security operations are using or considering small radar technology to alert to drone intrusions. And drones have intruded into sports stadiums and parades, peeked into windows and landed on the White House lawn.

On the other hand, experts at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business say drones are already into law enforcement and security applications. “We are missing out on a commercial opportunity that other countries have already embraced,” says Smith School professor Oliver Schlake, a drone hobbyist who challenges his MBA students to develop business applications for the technology. Hank Lucas, another Smith School professor who wrote “The Search for Survival: Lessons from Disruptive Technologies,” says the impact will be immense as more companies discover commercially viable applications for drones. “It’s well beyond our imagination,” he says.

Storm watching:Drones can fly into the eye of a hurricane or hover over an active volcano, sending back data without risking lives. Global Hawk drones developed by Northrop Grumman can monitor stormy areas for up to 30 hours, generating data not available any other way.

Search and rescue:After severe storms hit Texas and Oklahoma in May 2015, the FAA sent drones from one of its test sites to search for survivors along the Blanco River.

Security:Drones equipped with headlamps, cameras and alarms can startle intruders and records their movements – and they often can arrive at the scene faster than police or private security officers. A company with commercial security contracts in New Zealand plans to deploy the technology by the end of 2015.

Innovation and technology as applied to the security industry can, not surprisingly, be a two-edged sword. Still, the good side of that tech sword can slice through crime prevention, situational awareness, forensics and other security tasks with ease.

One example: Innovative integration through diverse software is squeezing more value out of enterprise investments in security technology that evolves from protection and into the natural workflow of an organization.

At Austin Hall in the College of Business at Oregon State University in Corvallis, a security management system (VI Connect from Vanderbilt) represents one of the most unique systems integration projects within the higher education market.

The technology seamlessly integrates building access control into a single data management solution that not only enables school officials to streamline door access, but also allows students and staff to reserve one of 21 project rooms in the facility simply by using their existing credential. In addition to the project rooms, the building also features classrooms, faculty conference rooms, IT closets, a four-room research suite, a mailroom and an assortment of event spaces.

To help manage access control at Austin Hall, which includes credentials for approximately 4,500 students each semester, Kirk Wydner, operating systems network analyst for the College of Business, and his team chose to take an innovative and integrated approach.

Part 2, Next Week

Article Provided By: Security

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Liquid Video Technologies Has Moved

Moved

We’ve Moved

Great news for our customers, Liquid Video Technologies has just finished moving our offices from our old home in Easley South Carolina to our new home in Greenville South Carolina. We are extremely happy to be more accessible to our clients and their ends.

Now Liquid Video Technologies is faster than ever!

With the move to our new home, we have increased our ability to serve our clients with a New Server. Also, at our new location, we have a new Fiber connection provided by Charter Spectrum and we are now running at speeds of 100 megs of upload and 100 megs of download.  In just three words, our new Server is Fast–Fast–Fast! The new Server has new SSD-hard drives and significantly more ram. Our Email clients have ready commented on just how much faster their email is running.

Our new location is, 1325 Miller Road, Suited C and we are looking forward to serving our customers from this location for years to come.

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Labor Day

History of Labor Day

Labor Day: What it Means

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

Labor Day Legislation

Through the years the nation gave increasing emphasis to Labor Day. The first governmental recognition came through municipal ordinances passed during 1885 and 1886. From these, a movement developed to secure state legislation. The first state bill was introduced into the New York legislature, but the first to become law was passed by Oregon on February 21, 1887. During the year four more states — Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York — created the Labor Day holiday by legislative enactment. By the end of the decade Connecticut, Nebraska, and Pennsylvania had followed suit. By 1894, 23 other states had adopted the holiday in honor of workers, and on June 28 of that year, Congress passed an act making the first Monday in September of each year a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the territories.

Founder of Labor Day

The father of labor day

More than 100 years after the first Labor Day observance, there is still some doubt as to who first proposed the holiday for workers.

Some records show that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a cofounder of the American Federation of Labor, was first in suggesting a day to honor those “who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold.”

But Peter McGuire’s place in Labor Day history has not gone unchallenged. Many believe that Matthew Maguire, a machinist, not Peter McGuire, founded the holiday. Recent research seems to support the contention that Matthew Maguire, later the secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of Machinists in Paterson, N.J., proposed the holiday in 1882 while serving as secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York. What is clear is that the Central Labor Union adopted a Labor Day proposal and appointed a committee to plan a demonstration and picnic.

Article Provided By: U.S. Department Of Labor

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Cost of data breaches increasing to average of $3.8 million

data breaches

Data Breaches

The cost of data breaches is rising for companies around the world as sophisticated thieves target valuable financial and medical records, according to a study released on Wednesday.

The total average cost of a data breach is now $3.8 million, up from $3.5 million a year ago, according to a study by data security research organization Ponemon Institute, paid for by International Business Machines Corp.

The direct costs include hiring experts to fix the breach, investigating the cause, setting up hotlines for customers and offering credit monitoring for victims. Business lost because customers are wary after a breach can be even greater, the study said.

Data breaches are becoming more common and significant, with high-profile attacks on Sony Corp, JPMorgan Chase and retailers Target Corp and Home Depot Inc in the past year and a half.

“Most of what’s occurring is through organized crime,” said Caleb Barlow, vice president of IBM Security. “These are well-funded groups. They work Monday to Friday. They are probably better funded and better staffed than a lot people who are trying to defend against them.”

IBM, which sells cyber-security services to companies, has a vested interest in highlighting the costs of data breaches.

The cost of a data breach is now $154 per record lost or stolen, up from $145 last year, according to the study, based on interviews with 350 companies from 11 major countries that had suffered a data breach.

The study’s authors said average costs did not apply to mega-breaches affecting millions of customers, such as those suffered by JPMorgan Chase, Target and Home Depot, which cost the companies far greater sums. Target alone said last year its breach cost $148 million.

The study found that the healthcare was most at risk for costly breaches, with an average cost per record lost or stolen as high as $363, more than twice the average for all sectors of $154.

That reflects the relatively high value of a person’s medical records on the underground market, said IBM, as Social Security information is much more useful for identity theft than simple names, addresses or credit card numbers.

Article Provided By: Reuters

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