29 October 2020


This month Simon Banks talks to Ben Linklater, Sales Director at OPTEX, a world-leading manufacturer of high-performance sensing technologies.

What are the latest developments in the world of detection systems?

Detection systems, as with many other technologies, benefit from the progress made in digital microprocessors and analytics. While our sensors have always had a great level of reliability, they are now getting even more intelligent, using powerful algorithms to classify information and recognise patterns.

Another development is the ability for detection systems to be part of an IP network and use communication protocols that are secure and interoperable with management software platforms. Interoperability is particularly important when linking sensors with video systems to provide an event-driven visual verification. Whilst it is common to connect detection sensors to remotely monitored CCTV systems to drive PTZ cameras, it is still relatively rare to see traditional monitored alarm systems being linked to video devices. It is, though, of great benefit to ARCs to be able to visually verify events and avoid dispatching keyholders or the police if there is no real threat.

How important is reliable connectivity?

Connectivity is fundamental for any security system. How can it be monitored if there is no alarm communication? This is why it is critical that systems are designed in such a way that any loss of connectivity is notified. It is also very important to consider the security of the connection. The vulnerability of a security system usually lies in the lack of secure data transmission. This is where solutions like the CSL Router are vital for installations. As it provides a secure VPN, Installers can be confident in the integrity of the connection. Should the OPTEX system (the Bridge) lose its primary connection, the 4G router steps in, always keeping the solution online. As a manufacturer, we know how important it is to work together with Installers to give them the right information and options to design systems which are suited for the level of security required and the threat faced.

As Chairman of the BSIA’s Video Surveillance Systems Section, can you outline what the industry association is doing currently to support Installers?

I am now in my second year of chairing the section and I have found it an exhilarating experience. It is a fast evolving subject, in an environment which keeps throwing new challenges at us. One of the topics we are working on is the implication of Brexit on British Standards. This is a wide subject, looking on one hand at which standards to follow for security installations in the UK, but also how British manufacturers should handle standards in the future to be able to export compliant goods and systems to the EU.

Our Section is also currently working on AI, with a focus on Automatic Facial Recognition (AFR) technologies. Consulting with the government and public sector, we are exploring the ethical implications of this technology within the private and public sectors, its compliance with GDPR and the best applications for its use.


Brilliant Company!! Get connected with these guys straight forward very helpful and above all the best in the business.

Alan Holmes (Trinity Fire and Security) - LinkedIn - 6th October

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