Security installers must use their time as effectively as possible in order to maximise revenues, while also ensuring excellent customer service. The cloud is at the forefront in enabling smarter working practices, with new and exciting developments changing the technology landscape.
Cloud solutions of all types are growing at a pace and we are now seeing innovation and immense computing power available to all. The cloud forms a massive part of the overall IT landscape and according to IDC’s latest Worldwide Quarterly Cloud IT Infrastructure Tracker, spending on IT infrastructure for these environments will grow at a 12.5 per cent annual growth rate (CAGR) to $57.8bn by 2020.
Taking the lead
As a computing option, the cloud offers a whole host of benefits. A general term for the delivery of hosted services over the Internet, it comprises a network of servers that enables enterprises to access and use IT resources as a utility, as opposed to building and maintaining their own computing infrastructures in-house.
In 2015, Eurostat found that 21 per cent of the EU population aged 16-74 used Internet storage space to save their data – a figure that is rising rapidly. According to the results of 451 Research’s Voice of the Enterprise survey, organisations will continue to transform their information storage environments in 2016 and the proportion of spending on cloud storage services will at least double over the next two years. Not surprisingly, all business sectors are looking to exploit the advantages of the cloud and cutting edge vendors in the security industry are finding new and innovative ways to do so.
As a technology pioneer, Vanderbilt has long recognised the potential of the cloud and seeks to utilise it to support smarter ways of working for installers. This forward thinking approach helps to reduce the time, effort and expense associated with completing tasks to the highest possible standards, and helps build closer working relationships.
Up in the sky
Vanderbilt has successfully used the cloud to improve the features and functionality of its market leading SPC range. One of the strongest intrusion product ranges currently available, SPC has obtained more approvals than any other system, both nationally and internationally.
Dealing with technical or operational issues associated with intrusion alarms has traditionally been a time-consuming and laborious task for installers, and an expensive one for their customers. It’s often the case that only minimal data about a system is available remotely, meaning that a site visit is the only way to get to the bottom of a problem and make any required system alterations. In some cases it can also mean that a customer has to wait hours or even days for a problem to be rectified – something that few enterprises can accommodate.
With SPC, that’s all changed. SPC Connect allows installers and end users to access an SPC intruder alarm control panel remotely via the Internet, with all of its settings and other information stored in the cloud. Alarm receiving centres (ARC) and end users can also integrate it within their own monitoring systems.It comprises an Internet portal that can be accessed via a standard PC, as well as a mobile app for smartphones and tablets. By simply logging in via a user name and password, it’s possible to remotely view status, set and unset a system, update firmware, carry out time synchronisations, back up configuration files, control devices, access an event log and view cameras across single or multiple panels. It can also configure direct messaging by email, so in the event of an alarm an installer is notified.
Simple to use, the latest version of this innovative solution – SPC Connect 2.0 – is designed firmly with the installer in mind. It offers the ability to customise how data is viewed by setting up a feature that allows a company to manage and control access rights all of its customers’ panels.
Panels can be added as they are installed and this installer focused solution permits specific tasks to be performed such as configuration management, troubleshooting and regular maintenance. As well as being convenient, it saves massive amounts of time and money that would otherwise be spent travelling to and from site, while also enabling a swift resolution to any issues. Just as importantly, it saves the customer the cost of a call out charge, which can be anything up to £100.
Safe and secure
A recent study by PwC indicated that 71 per cent of businesses believe that cyber threats have increased over the last two years. Furthermore, BullGuard recently found that 66 per cent of consumers are ‘very concerned’ or ‘highly concerned’ about potential hacking and data theft carried out against their Internet connected devices, with 34 per cent having already experienced a security incident or privacy problem in the past. The same study found that 78 per cent of respondents have concerns about security risks such as viruses, malware and hackers, while 66 per cent expressed concern over data collected by device manufacturers being inappropriately used or stolen.
Using the cloud is not without risk – but the good news is that in the right hands this risk can be managed and minimised.
Vanderbilt understands the concerns about data integrity that installers have when using the cloud, which is why it has ensured the highest standards of security are maintained at all times. When using SPC Connect 2.0, Vanderbilt ensures the process is highly secure thanks to the implementation of the FlexC protocol, which uses AES 256-bit SSL encryption at server level – the same grade used by banks and hospitals. Likewise, installers can only be given access specific panels and this authorisation can be withdrawn at any time in order to offer customers total peace of mind.