The Top Investments Universities Are Making To Advance Campus SafetyBy David Thompson
Over 46 students in every 1,000 experienced some kind of crime during their time on campus. Universities are taking swift action to upgrade campus security and make campuses safe for students.
Agile and responsive security can significantly reduce incidents on campus. Keep reading to learn about the top security investments that universities are making to upgrade and enhance campus safety.
Security Camera Systems
Security camera systems are an integral element in campus security. They ensure that no incident on campus goes undocumented. They also deter criminals from attempting a crime on the property, as the perpetrator will see that they are being recorded, which may discourage them.
Universities need complete visibility on-site, which requires the expertise of a security installation specialist. A specialist can optimize security camera placement to ensure no blind spots a criminal could take advantage of, leading to a threat to student safety.
The security camera system should cover student dorms, libraries, lecture facilities, wellness centers, student unions, and parking lots. Parking gate systems reduce incidents on-site, as students can be vulnerable when walking to and from their cars. Ensuring air-tight surveillance helps universities protect the university and student assets and works toward preventing crime on campus.
System integration is one of the top investments universities choose for their security strategy. To integrate all elements in their security strategy, universities invest in cloud-based security solutions with open API integrations, allowing a security integrator to connect all security tools.
What does system integration do for campus security? Well, it helps to make security data more accessible by hosting it on a single platform, unifying disparate systems, and eliminating data silos. Instead of using several different platforms to resolve a security investigation, campus police can access all information at once on a single interface.
The integration allows universities to implement facial recognition for video surveillance and access control. If a user's access credentials do not match their facial profile, they will not be able to enter the building - preventing any incidents involving stolen keycards.
An integrated system can host alarm systems, building sensors, access control, video surveillance, and more. Campus security can implement automated triggers for security events, allowing them to receive mobile alerts for a more agile security response when a breach occurs. Integration potential is making cloud-based security a popular choice for campus security.
Smartphone Safety Apps
Since campus security is designed to help students feel safe in their learning environment, universities should be taking steps to make security more accessible for students. Many universities are implementing smartphone safety apps to promote a culture of safety on campus.
If students feel unsafe or need support, they can contact campus security via the mobile app and send an instant alert. Additionally, campus police can send out alerts to students to notify them of any incidents or suspicious activity spotted on campus, allowing them to navigate the campus safely and with an awareness of security happenings. For instance, if a sighting of an individual bearing a weapon on site, all students and staff would be notified, allowing them to respond and get to safety.
Pedestrian Safety Solutions
Security doesn't just refer to emergencies and intruders - students need guidance when crossing the road and navigating traffic on-site. For this reason, universities are investing in pedestrian safety solutions to promote a culture of road safety on campus. This includes flashing sidewalks and crosswalk solutions activated by motion sensors that increase night visibility for pedestrians, drivers, or cyclists.
Keyless Access Control
Universities waste unnecessary funds every year to replace and create keycards and fobs that allow students to enter university buildings. However, more and more universities are adopting keyless access control to eliminate these expenses.
Keyless access control uses mobile credentials instead of keycards and fobs - the user can simply download access credentials onto their device. Mobile-first access control allows users to enter more conveniently by offering touchless access. Instead of presenting their device to the reader, the user can enter with a hand wave. The motion of their hand will trigger the access reader to communicate with their mobile device via Bluetooth, permitting entry remotely. Touchless entry reduces the spread of germs on buttons and pin pads and promotes an uninhibited flow of traffic at university entrances.
Keyless access control is a cloud-based solution that enables system administrators and campus police teams to manage security remotely. They can access a mobile application or cloud-based control center that allows them to lock and unlock doors from any location, even off-site. If an emergency occurs on-site, they can remotely open all doors to assist students in evacuating the building, or they can initiate lockdown procedures in the event of an attack on campus.
Campus security is an essential consideration for any educational institution. Students need to feel safe and supported at university, and these technologies are helping universities implement airtight security that provides remote management features for an agile response. Consider the existing security strategy of your educational institution in line with these technologies to identify any critical vulnerabilities in your system.
* This is a contributed article and this content does not necessarily represent the views of universityherald.com