ISJ Exclusive: Keeping things moving


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Ross Wilks, Head of Marketing, ACRE International examines how advances in electronic security are helping to improve supply chain security for the transport and logistics industry.

Well-planned security investments provide significant payback not only in terms of loss prevention but also by enhancing supply chain performance. The global freight transport, distribution and logistics services sector includes transportation by road, rail, air and sea. The industry is both capital and employment-intensive and is driven primarily by trends in global trade.

Reinventing existing systems with streamlined electronic security solutions

All forms of transport and logistics facilities require some form of digital, electronic security solutions to protect what is most critical. According to, “digitisation is one of the fundamental strategies to becoming more customer-centric, agile, productive and profitable.” Companies that develop flexible and agile electronic security systems that can respond quickly and appropriately will have a strong competitive advantage.

The transport and logistics industry as a business is affected daily by traditional business drivers. These include regulatory, supply and demand, operational efficiencies and other non-traditional sources, like climate change or a pandemic. Freight transport and warehousing services are increasingly a significant component of the total supply chain cost for companies in bringing a product to market. Supply Chain Brain has noted previously that “the pandemic catalysed a greater logistics investment opportunity when it became apparent that supply chain performance had become a board level discussion at shippers.”

The digital future of streamlined transport and logistic offerings

According to multiple surveys and industry reports, integrators cited AI-based analytics as a top trend for 2022. Within electronic security and beyond, there’s an ever evolving desire to make all devices more intelligent, interoperable and interconnected – and we can look toward the Internet of Things (IoT) as the source. More than ever, security managers want their systems to work seamlessly together, expecting them to “talk” to each other over industry standard protocols. ACRE is leading the way in this regard, making its solutions easy to integrate with and to associated third party devices.

Developments in the access control and smart facility arena continue to focus on saving resources, maximising investment and creating environmentally sustainable spaces for tomorrow. Next generation intelligent systems enable centralised control of all areas within a building including heating, ventilation, air conditioning, power, lighting, security, access services and occupancy sensors. Increased focus on your industry’s corporate social responsibility will benefit organisations in the long term, reinventing your best-in-business practices.

Access control at the core

The use of digital access control has become more than simply providing a secure working environment for your industry’s employees and key stakeholders. ACRE’s award-winning cloud-based solutions, such as Feenics, Access IT! and the on-premises solution, ACTPro delivers scalable security for small to enterprise-size organisations and address the challenges of securing and connecting multiple locations while eliminating the need for additional IT resources. Innovative and intelligent access control management has become a central component for effective security strategies that reinvent your facility with global scalability and streamlined solutions.

By strictly monitoring individuals’ whereabouts within a facility and ensuring authorised-only personnel and visitors, access control can enable transportation and logistics providers to protect against the risks they most prominently face today. Access control platforms can also be integrated with related solutions such as video management, intrusion, visitor management and destination control. These seamless integrations can allow continuity of data flow and correlate data points for more awareness of what’s happening at any given time.

Revolutionised and intelligent building management

Electronic security systems are adding value to capital investments by incorporating information from building management, video surveillance and other connected devices to deliver more intelligence to stakeholders. For example, when an access control and building management system are integrated, the simple act of authorising user access can both enhance security and communicate to the building management system to turn on lights or machinery in a specific area, ensuring savings on energy costs and reducing carbon footprint.

Operators can also automate alarms across the video and access control systems, eliminating the need to configure multiple software applications. With the integration of video management software offerings, streamlined access control solutions give users the ability to view the video in real time or record videos associated with a door directly through the access control application.

In addition, if a door is forced open, the operator can right-click on the event and replay the video recording. This integration provides more precise data because the video data supports the access event. Combining the two functions also empowers video-based verification to detect “ghosting” and helps investigate slip-and-fall incidents to protect against false liability claims. Role-based organisational access levels can also be easily monitored and corroborated with video footage.

Global facilities with multiple sites with thousands of employees, visitors and contractors entering and exiting facilities each day can be a challenge to manage sufficiently. With deep integrations applied, data input and output that grants and restricts access improves the overall user experience and workflow of each facility with contactless, mobile access, visitor management and remote unlocking capabilities.

The importance of the cloud across transport and logistics

The cloud is having a significant impact on a wide variety of industries. Moving from on-prem to the cloud not only ensures lower costs and higher availability within the scope of security but also enables you to leverage today’s tools whilst ensuring future-proofing with a robust access control solution without investing heavily in IT infrastructure.

Within the scope of security, the cloud allows providers to implement a robust access control solution without investing heavily in IT infrastructure. From garages and turnstiles to high volume credentialing and visitor management, to controlling elevator access and common areas, cloud systems provide an all-in-one proven solution for the unique challenges transport and logistics facilities face when devising safe working environments for their industry.

As we become more familiar and comfortable with cloud technology and services, the benefits of deploying cloud solutions for physical security have become more apparent. Within the scope of digital security, the cloud allows organisations to implement a robust access control security solution without investing heavily in IT infrastructure. ACRE’s cloud-based access control solutions deliver seamless integration between access control and video and is accessible from anywhere, anytime and on any device – this provides a force that gives business owners greater visibility and control of their property.

The cybersecurity gap across industries today

The SolarWinds cyberattack of 2020 was cited by security experts as “one of the potentially largest penetrations of Western governments” since the Cold War. This attack put cybersecurity front and centre of people’s minds again and no more so than those engaged in the transport and logistics sector. With the growth of IT infrastructure within prominent industries, the aviation, logistics and rail networks have become increasingly digitalised, with a wide range of data flowing across tracking and monitoring digital and physical networks.

With more devices and control systems connected online, more vulnerabilities will appear, increasing the potential for physical asset disruption. ACRE’s Razberi Monitor is a software platform that provides a top-down view of the physical security network and ecosystem. It monitors and manages all the system components for cybersecurity and system health, providing secure visibility into the availability, performance and cyber posture of servers, storage, cameras and networked security devices.

Establishing a comprehensive security plan with intrusion detection

Intrusion detection systems protect the space from intruders who trespass or violate a physical perimeter. This is especially important for transit authorities to keep unauthorised persons out of specific high-risk and unauthorised areas. Integrating intrusion and access control into a unified platform allows security officials to make more informed decisions about access to a facility, managing all peripheral components together from a single platform. This approach delivers the ability to simultaneously monitor access, restrict access on-demand, streamline visitor management and address alarms using a comprehensive framework of data gathered from multiple sources.

The future of securing logistics and transport facilities

Effective security management boils down to three key elements: Processes, people and technology. Processes must run seamlessly alongside the organisation and security managers must have the capability to detect, react and understand the context of risk. The technology used must be superior, to keep up with cyber threats.

ACRE’s extensive offering of unified technology provides global industries with valuable tools to help reimagine facility management and allows security leaders to seamlessly identify threats and be more proactive to increased risk, with digitally revolutionised solutions.

This article was originally published in the January 2023 edition of International Security Journal. To read your FREE digital edition, click here.

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