The correctional market is unique. Security is not implemented to protect the general population or assets, but to mitigate liability. The safety of both prison inmates and employees be monitored on an entirely different level.
Modern-day video management systems are being used in the correctional industry and here are some of the ways it immediately impacts day-to-day operations.
Enhancing Security Operations
Used as a workforce multiplier, a video management system can help prison staff actively monitor several areas at once, from the outdoor exercise yard and indoor common areas to prison cells and hallways.
When integrated with facial recognition technology, the VMS system can track a prison guard escorting an inmate throughout the facility. When the prison guard arrives at a door, facial recognition technology can confirm the identity of the prison guard and open up the door, eliminating the need for the prison guard to enter a passcode or to have to push an intercom button.
Other analytic functionality, such as perimeter detection technology, can also be integrated, allowing prison staff to receive an alert if the surveillance system detects suspicious activity near the shaker fence, which is the barrier between the outward prison fence and the prison itself. For example, if the system detects movement in this area, the VMS can immediately bring this to the attention of the security operations center, enabling them to more closely review video footage within this area.
Secure Video Clips
To ensure that video clips of an incident do not get into the wrong hands, correctional facilities need to be able to effectively manage video clip permissions. Tightened escalation permissions safeguard against the wrong people having access to videos or the ability to export these clips.
Using a ticketing system, a prison employee can request access to a specific video clip, and the correctional facility security operations center can review that request and grant access accordingly. Not only does this ensure tight control of exported video, but it also provides an audit trail of requests should that video become publicly leaked.
Scalability is Paramount
As funding becomes available, correctional facilities need to make sure they have a VMS in place that can handle new technology like high-megapixel cameras or can incorporate new analytics. The average lifecycle for investing in new technology is 18 months or longer, and in this time period technology can change significantly. Being able to add cameras or edge devices is critical for correctional facilities.
Funding for technical upgrades in this market is often a challenge – correctional facilities are not profit centers for states and municipalities but rather an operational expense – and it’s not uncommon for these types of facilities to have security equipment in place that is a decade old. Understanding the technical requirements can ensure that the surveillance systems implemented in correctional facilities today can provide long-term benefits to protect the prison population and security guards alike.