Live from IDEX: Situational awareness is the key to public safety and national security

Live from IDEX: Situational awareness is the key to public safety and national security

20 February 2013 | Jennifer Steele, Senior Marketing Manager, Worldwide Public Sector

As countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) grapple with the tremendous changes to their region in recent years, domain awareness and intelligence has risen to the forefront of defense priorities. Police and military organizations are working across regions every day to manage extremist threats, combat operations and violent crimes, and technology is now one of the most important tools available to support this mission at home and abroad. The diverse nature and geography of these threats demands a common operational picture that public safety and national defense agencies can use to gather intelligence and accelerate decision-making when every second counts.

Microsoft’s Global Security Operations Centers (GSOC) showcase best-practice use of Microsoft products in a real world operational environment and highlight best-in-class partner software applications based on Microsoft technologies. GSOC’s monitoring personnel can examine building maps and video and send instant messages to dispatchers who then relay instructions to local responders by way of Radio over IP (RoIP) for a local, precision response to an event monitored from the other side of town — or the other side of the globe. For Microsoft alone, the GSOCs monitor 700 sites worldwide, along with 183,000 active personnel access accounts, 14,000 access card readers, 17,000 video cameras connected to 934 IP addressable digital video recorders and 330 fire panels. These sites also include more than 9,000 other devices, including duress alarms, biometric security systems and environmental alarms.

By combining its physical security infrastructure with IT practices using off-the-shelf software applications, Microsoft GSOCs create a streamlined, efficient and cost-effective security solution that can be managed from anywhere in the world for superior situational awareness throughout the OODA (Observe, Orient, Decide, Act ) decision cycle.

With a customized solution based on these GSOC principles, the communications network becomes part of a global defense system that can monitor and respond to signal data and event notifications within multiple regions, monitoring physical security assets as well as facilitating communications and dispatching on-site security in response to events. Similar solutions are already deployed in New York City – where a Domain Awareness System aggregates and analyzes existing public safety data streams in real time to provide investigators and analysts with a comprehensive view of potential threats and criminal activity – and Johannesburg, South Africa, where a pilot program is underway to support law enforcement’s fight against violent crime.

Situational awareness gives public safety and defense teams the ability to analyze the motivation, logistics and location of crime patterns and potential terrorist activities. This common operational picture provides a critical foundation for fast and informed action against local, regional and national threats.

Visit Microsoft at booth #04-A01, USA Pavilion for demonstrations and more information.

Jennifer Steele
Senior Marketing Manager, Worldwide Public Sector

About the Author

Jennifer Steele | Senior Marketing Manager, Worldwide Public Safety and National Security Industry

Jennifer’s focus is on public safety and national security. She joined the Microsoft worldwide team from Avanade, the world’s largest Microsoft consultancy, where she led field marketing for the Americas geography. Read More