Embracing Integration, Intelligent Evolution


Managing Editor Rebecca Spayne looks at the UK’s physical security landscape and its transformative shift, converging cyber and physical realms, harnessing AI and video analytics, and prioritising integration, interoperability, and biometrics 

Physical security has long been a cornerstone of safeguarding assets and individuals. However, as 2023 rolls around, we are observing an evolution in the sector with new trends rooted in advanced technology and an ever-changing landscape of threats. Here, we look into the paramount physical security trends of the year and how manufacturers in the UK are stepping up to meet these demands. 

  1. Risk of Cyber-Physical Attacks Increases

In an age of interconnectivity, the boundaries between cyber and physical realms are blurring. The rising threat of cyber-physical attacks demands security solutions that protect not only the physical assets but also the networks they’re connected to. Companies like Axis Communications are leading the way by ensuring their cameras and systems are designed with cybersecurity features built-in, offering a more holistic security approach. 

The blending of cyber and physical realms has led to a new breed of threats, aptly termed ‘cyber-physical attacks’. These represent the dark side of our rapidly advancing technological landscape, where malicious actors seek to exploit the interconnectedness of digital and tangible systems. As the UK accelerates its digital transition, understanding and mitigating the risk of these assaults on its physical security infrastructure is critical. 

A cyber-physical attack transcends the digital screen, manifesting in real-world disturbances. It involves exploiting digital vulnerabilities to interfere with or control physical systems. From tampering with industrial control systems to manipulate machinery, to hacking into connected vehicles, the threats are both novel and varied. 

So, why is the UK particularly at risk? 

Technological Ambitions: The UK’s endeavours, such as the Smart Cities initiative and the expansive rollout of the Internet of Things (IoT), have exponentially increased the number of devices connected to the internet. 

Interconnected Infrastructure: Modern British infrastructures, whether they be transport, utilities, or communication systems, are deeply integrated with digital platforms, presenting numerous touchpoints for cyber aggressors. 

Sophisticated Attack Landscape: With a combination of home-grown and external digital threats, the UK faces a complex web of potential attack vectors. 

While the challenge is daunting, solutions are emerging. Companies like Bosch have developed integrated security solutions that combine physical security apparatus with cybersecurity protocols. Their systems not only detect intrusions but also identify potential cyber threats. 

Meanwhile, Honeywell has ventured into artificial intelligence-based analytics that monitor system behaviour, identifying and neutralising anomalies that could indicate a cyber-physical attack. 

Manufacturers like Siemens focus on hardening industrial control systems, ensuring they can withstand or rapidly recover from cyber intrusions. Their solutions are particularly vital for critical infrastructures like power plants or water treatment facilities. Recognising the importance of secure communication, companies like ABB have developed encrypted tools that allow devices to communicate securely, reducing the risk of interference or eavesdropping. 

The evolving nature of cyber-physical threats necessitates an adaptive, forward-thinking approach. By amalgamating advanced technological solutions, industry collaboration, and public awareness, the UK can hope to fortify its defences and foster a safer, more resilient digital-physical ecosystem. 

  1. Integration Across Platforms

One of the major trends in 2023 is the shift towards integrating various security systems into a singular, cohesive network. For instance, Milestone Systems provides platforms that allow for the integration of video, access control, and intrusion detection. Such integrative solutions help in more efficient monitoring and faster response times. 

The modern era of physical security is marked by more than just isolated systems and devices. Today, the trend is unmistakably moving towards integration across platforms. This ensures a cohesive, interconnected, and efficient security network that offers better monitoring, streamlined operations, and faster response times.  

Integration in the context of physical security pertains to the ability of various security systems and devices to communicate, operate, and deliver functions in a coordinated manner. Think of it as pieces of a puzzle coming together to present a clearer, complete picture of the security landscape. And for true integration across manufacturers and the entirety of a security system, we are witnessing a shift from integration to interoperability. The realms of interoperability rely on collaboration between manufacturers and it is only this year that we are starting to see a true development in this area with standards, open API, Public Key Open Credentials (PKOC) etc.  

  1. Artificial Intelligence and Analytics

In an age where technology continuously evolves, the security sector is no exception. As we stride through 2023, it’s evident that Artificial Intelligence (AI) and analytics have emerged as transformative forces in the realm of physical security. Beyond merely recording or monitoring, security systems today analyse, predict and respond – thanks to the sophisticated capabilities of AI and data analytics. 

The modern face of physical security transcends traditional cameras and alarms. AI, with its machine learning components, allows systems to evolve, learning from past data to make more informed decisions about potential security threats. 

An exemple in the sector, is Genetec. Their innovations showcase how AI can make security more proactive than reactive. Their advanced analytics can pick up unusual patterns in data that might indicate a security breach, even before it fully manifests. 

In addition, Axis Communications’ hardware features cutting-edge analytics, but it also incorporates AI to streamline monitoring. Their cameras, for instance, can filter out false alarms – like a pet moving as opposed to an intruder…

To read the full exclusive see our latest issues here.

Never miss a story… Follow us on:
Security Buyer

Media Contact
Rebecca Morpeth Spayne,
Editor, Security Portfolio
Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 922
Email: editor@securitybuyer.com

Subscribe to our newsletter

Don't miss new updates on your email
Scroll to Top