A few weeks ago, I attended #IFSEC2019, the UK & Europe’s leading security event together with over 27,000 security professionals.   Discussing the latest advancements in security technology including video surveillance to artificial intelligence, it was a fantastic arena to showcase how technology can excel security provisions.


Data and technology obsessed, I love to know what’s next in our industry, how we can excel client’s security provisions and understand how technology can propel security beyond any expectation. So, what did I learn and how can we apply these key takeaways to our way of working?


Like with any event, you have your favourite speakers, your note taking dreams and your snapshot happy stands. Below are my key takeaways for the event, showcasing what’s coming up, how we can jump on board and how we should be embracing the all-seeing eye that is technology.


The key takeaways


Cyber threats are imminent, but prevention has become more intelligent. Rapidly evolving technology, proliferation of data and the increased sophistication of criminal activity has dramatically changed businesses exposure to cyber-attacks; forcing larger organisations to take immediate action to minimize risk of digital devastation. But what many companies forget is the protection to the building itself.


Unwanted intruders are on the rise because cyber has become so good and now is the time to do both equally well!  From user-controlled accessibility to facial recognition, mobile access to biometrics, cutting-edge access control enables our bricks and mortar to be protected just as well as our digital counterparts.


There was a very interesting development in drones and security. For the more adventurous (and larger wallets) autonomous drones were a technological delight. Designed to detect and prevent intruders from accessing military bases, with the potential to disarm, these drones integrated artificial intelligence at its finest.


From building security to technology advances, the emphasis of the event came down to one key feature – data is still king. But it’s what you do with it that counts. We can innovate, create and manufacture products to protect our assets, but it’s how we evolve those measures to learn and prevent which makes the provision even more powerful than it already is.


How we can advance services with data


Did you know that 90% of the data in the world today has actually been created in the last two years alone? Our current output of data is roughly 2.5 quintillion bytes a day, making the application of how we ‘use’ data paramount to how we ‘protect’ data.


Data has become one of the most valuable assets we have ever come across.  Helping companies to upsell, predict customer behaviour and improve workflow, it enables business leaders to gain a competitive advantage that goes beyond the traditional uses of data.


So much so, that even by opening a door to a shared meeting room can provide the opportunity to enrich a client’s experience:


I work in a shared workspace in London and I use the meeting rooms about 5 times a month. I have an access control card which lets me into and out of my building and into my office, each time I request a meeting room, my card allows me into the room 10 minutes before my meeting, provided the room is free, and then it will let me back in up until 10 minutes after my meeting slot finishes in case I leave my notebook or water bottle behind ‘


By identifying that the client has booked the space five times that month, the company can then provide something special, demonstrating the client is highly valued, simply by offering their next booking free of charge.  Evaluating access frequency enables the company to secure further bookings with unique offerings and upsell other rooms based on their client’s monthly activity – enhancing the client and company’s overall service experience.


Access control data can also be used to enable and enhance staff wellbeing. Recently we worked with a large tech firm based in London, installing an access control point to their in-house gym. Enabling staff to check when the gym was busy, the access control point offered staff members visibility on how busy the gym was before they decided to attend. This enabled staff to control when they would visit the gym throughout the day, contributing to a more healthier working environment.  For more information on how we improved overall wellbeing, check out our case study here


Taking a helicopter view of how we integrated modern security, technology is not just about how we protect our valuable assets but how we can utilise data to enhance and evolve our overall services, be that internally or externally.


At Welcome Gate, our core value is to show clients that ‘We care, it’s all personal, and we do it right – right to the end!’. An ethos we should apply to how we use and integrate data across business.


After all, data is king!  Let me know what you think – especially if you are a security professional with similar experiences. And if you have a security or workforce management issue that needs more than just a smoke and mirrors approach, call the Welcome Gate team on 020 7620 6288 or email [email protected] for more information.