Security Matters

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Virtual and Physical Security Officers Work Together to Combat Physical Security Threats

2023 Security Trends: Reasons To Take Real-Time Monitoring More Seriously

The most common type of security is on site security. Traditional on site security guards act as the public face of the property they are assigned to secure. Whether the security officer is posted at a Class A office building, residential community, retail establishment, or another facility, they are tasked with supervising areas of concern. They do this either by conducting patrols, watching camera monitors, or being alerted to a concern by a guest or client. Regardless, the security officer is responsible for protecting the physical property, staff, and visitors at our client’s locations.    

However, there may be blind spots or limitations that can impact the speed or efficiency with which a physical security officer can respond to a concern or event. We needed to find a way to improve our ability to be in the right place at the right time. Thankfully, BOS Security has introduced our new Command Center which offers a host of virtual security services, including our remote interactive video monitoring solution, VirtuGuard™, that can reduce blind spots on your sites and in your security plan, as well as enhance physical security measures. The use of the site’s local, on-premises security infrastructure allows us to put onsite security guards in the right place at the right time.  

Interactive Remote Guarding Solutions  

VirtuGuard™ remote video monitoring works by connecting to the local on-premises security cameras and related infrastructure installed on the property to our Command Center in near real time. The cameras are then equipped with Artificial Intelligence (AI), video analytics, and other smart technology to detect and identify activity, as well as decrease false alarms by using video verification of activities. The Command Center staff, VirtuGuard™ Agents, then engage in the verified events or incidents that may require their intervention, all while following site-specific protocols. When a verified event is detected, a VirtuGuard™ Agent, accesses the live video footage and recorded video to observe and assess the incident before deciding on how to appropriately respond, again following your custom designed site protocols.    

Mobile Protection Solution: Mobile Surveillance Trailer  

BOS Security uses a number of mobile virtual security tools, an example of which is our Mobile Surveillance Trailer. A fully self-sufficient solution with solar power and cellular data, this portable solution can be parked in an area to help secure the property. Command Center staff will connect to the mobile security infrastructure as needed when protecting the area, activating a full set of feature-rich security services and bring positive results to the protected site.  

Popular uses include construction sites, parking lots, automotive dealerships, and other businesses with outdoor assets. The main components of this security tool include:  

  • Solar panel for self-sufficient power 
  • Cellular data for remote areas 
  • Two 180° cameras  
  • One pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) camera  
  • Strobe lights that can be activated as a deterrent to trespassers and other criminal activity  
  • Audio speaker used to speak down to trespassers  

Mobile security systems can be custom designed to fit your unique site situation. One size may not fit all.  

Audio Capabilities: Voice Down Using One-Way and/or Two-Way Audio  

Interactive Audio is a critical and effective part of the virtual security solution set provided by VirtuGuard™. Following all site-specific and site-approved protocols, this capability can be activated for a variety of purposes, some of which may be critical to allow for immediate intervention from the Command Center, including:  

  • Greeting staff, customers, or guests when they enter the business    
  • Specialty Announcements of Instructions, Site Issues, Special Events that are happening, or ongoing sales or deals for customers and guests     
  • Possibly Alerting patrons that the site is actively being monitored for their protection and convenience; that the site is subject to video monitoring and recording    
  • Warnings to potential trespassers or vandals that all activities are being monitored and recorded, directing calls for assistance, or potentially asking them to leave the property and that the business is currently closed, and if they do not leave then additional actions will be taken  

Site-specific audio announcements can both be used to make guests feel more welcome and safer and deter trespassers or other suspicious individuals from engaging in prohibited or inappropriate activities.   

Supplement Physical Security Guards with Remote Video Monitoring  

Equipping a property with both physical security officers and VirtuGuard™ interactive remote monitoring services can increase security coverage of a property and improve the response to events and incidents, while simultaneously significantly reducing the ongoing costs of physical security.   

When physical guards and virtual guards work together to detect concerns, blind spots can be significantly reduced or eliminated and more information can be gathered, which will allow both parties and law enforcement as necessary, to appropriately respond to an event. This allows the right resources to be in the right place at the right time.     

Below is a real-life example of how implementing physical and virtual security solutions can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of security response and keep your property, visitors, and employees confident in their safety. The solution set detailed below has reduced the client’s annual security budget by over 40% while at the same time providing a much higher level of service to the location.  

Stop Physical Security Threats and Improve Customer Experience  

BOS Security has a security contract with a high-traffic outdoor shopping center in Decatur, Georgia to provide onsite physical security measures and VirtuGuard™ interactive remote video monitoring and related solutions, including real-time audio from the Command Center. Within the shopping center are several retail establishments, restaurants, service providers, and a Planet Fitness gym.    

The physical security guard completes regular tours of the center and is available for the businesses to call in the case of a dispute, suspected shoplifting, or other suspicious or illegal activity. Physical security at the shopping center is contracted for 16 hours per day, which is split between two officers, leaving the property without a physical security guard onsite from 10pm to 6am. However, the location is still being monitored and patrolled when there is not a physical guard on duty.   

VirtuGuard™ works to secure the property 24 hours a day by actively conducting and monitoring video surveillance. Virtual guards conduct regular patrols of the property but mainly act on alerts sent to their stations when abnormal activity is detected by AI. They can also be alerted to events or areas of concern by the onsite security guard, which is what happened in this case.    

Real Life Example

On January 30 at 9:55am, the VirtuGuard™ Command Center received a text message from the onsite BOS Security Officer, alerting them of an issue inside of the fitness center at the shopping center. The security officer indicated that there was an incident in progress within the gym with a dark-complexioned male raising his voice and making threats. A member inside the gym reported that the man commented, “I don’t want to shoot you, but I will.” He then left the building but told other patrons that he was going to get his gun.   

The VirtuGuard™ Agent assigned to the incident then pulled up the live video footage, finding the man entering his vehicle which was parked in the fire lane in front the gym. The suspect began opening the doors and trunk of the vehicle, throwing papers and other items onto the ground nearby while appearing visibly upset. Continuing to observe the situation, the physical security officer asked the Agent to dispatch local police to the shopping center and to also relay a voice down audio command. The voice down announcement was initiated and the Atlanta police were called at 9:56am.   

At 10:03am, only eight minutes after the physical security guard was first notified of the event, the Atlanta police arrived at the gym. Upon their arrival, the police officers approached the suspect and proceeded to handcuff him before placing him in the back of the patrol vehicle. The officers then cleaned up the items the man had thrown from his car into the parking lot. At 10:40am, a tow truck arrived at the scene and removed the vehicle from the property. After the vehicle was removed the officers left the site at 10:44am with the suspect detained in their vehicle.

Improve Site Efficiency and Effectiveness with the Use of Multiple Approaches to Security Processes and Procedures  

Google reviews of the shopping center before BOS Security began providing both security services included:  

  • “I avoid the gas station & grocery store because I do not feel safe at times. More security would help to calm this down.”  
  • There needs to be better security in place especially for those going to planet fitness early in the morning before work. There have been too many car break ins.”  
  • And others concerning the safety and security of the location  

The goal of implementing security at this shopping complex is to give workers, visitors, and the client themselves confidence in the security of the center. Increasing and improving security can be an opportunity for a company to bring in more business and show patrons they are cared for by vastly improving the customer experience. Happy customers shop more often, which makes for happy tenants.  

It only took eight minutes from the time the incident was noticed by the physical security guard to the time the police detained the suspect, and only 49 minutes for the incident to be resolved entirely. Combining physical security services with VirtuGuard™ remote video monitoring allows for dangerous situations to be handled more effectively and efficiently. The virtual guard was able to observe the suspect through surveillance cameras, providing the on-site Officer backup. The virtual guard was also able to communicate to police the details of the event happening in real time, so they could be better informed and equipped to handle the incident in an appropriate manner.    

What could have quickly escalated into a dangerous attack or fatal situation was quickly subdued through the combined efforts of the physical security guard, the VirtuGuard™ Agent, and local law enforcement.   

To learn more about VirtuGuard™ and physical security solutions, call 404-793-6965 or complete the contact form below to ask questions or request an assessment of your property by a BOS Security expert. 


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