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KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



After some interest in the Watch Dogs. thread in games, I figured I'd start a thread for those interested in knowing more about security.

First, a little about myself:

I design security systems for a living. I focus on physical security (cameras, door locks, badge readers, biometrics, etc.), but I also handle quite a bit of network security (firewalls, IPS, two-factor authentication, etc.). I've designed both very large (2,000+ camera), and very small (local gas station) systems, and I specialize in IP integration (putting cameras and other security devices on the network).

Have a question about what kind of system to get for your house?

Want to know if last night's episode of CSI was based on real technology or total bullshit? (It's probably bullshit.)

Wondering how a camera works?

Don't know the difference between IP and analog?

Curious about just how much big brother is watching you?

Ask away.


DISCLAIMER: I am not a lawyer. There are lots of privacy issues regarding surveillance in particular and while I may know enough about the subject to offer some insight, I am not qualified to give legal advice. Nothing I say should be taken as such. My general rule for designing surveillance systems is "Don't be creepy." If it's creepy, it may be illegal; check with a lawyer.

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 1, 2013 around 00:00

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KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Cameras in 5 Minutes - A Primer

All cameras, from the most expensive movie studio camera to the one in your cellphone are variations on the original pinhole camera.



A pinhole camera is extremely simple. It selectively allows individual light rays through in such a way that they form a coherent image on the other side. This works because all of the light rays going through the pinhole are focused through a single point, which means that if they are all of the same length, they describe a sphere. Each light ray can be described as the coordinate on this imaginary sphere it comes from, and will cast an exact copy on the other side (except smaller, upside down, and backwards).

The quality of a pinhole camera can be increased by making the pinhole smaller, and therefore being more selective in what light rays you let through. This leads to two problems: less light means a dimmer image, and there is a physical limit to how small the hole can be before physics makes things break in horrible ways (This mostly has to do with diffraction and wave-particle duality, which I won't get into here).

These both can be sidestepped by using carefully cut pieces of glass or plastic (called a lens) to refract the light through an imaginary "pinhole". This is called a focal point.



The accuracy of the lens determines how sharp of an image can be captured, so more expensive lenses are needed for higher resolution cameras. (Incidentally, this is why an 8+ megapixel camera on a cellphone with a tiny plastic lens captures terrible images compared to a 3 megapixel DSLR with a proper lens.

More advanced lenses can adjust individual pieces forward and back to make the field of view larger or smaller by moving the focal point closer to or further from the sensor. These are called varifocal lenses, and are made of several smaller lenses.

After the image is focused, it is projected onto a sensor. For security cameras, this can be a CCD (Charge Coupled Device) or a CMOS (Complimentary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor).

CCDs use an older technology and are expensive to scale up to higher resolutions, while CMOSs are more susceptible to noise, but lend themselves well to high pixel densities and consume much less power. Most IP cameras will use CMOS sensors, and CCD sensors will be found primarily on analog cameras.

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 1, 2013 around 00:46

Cosmic Charlie
Apr 6, 2009

How do you do? Truckin' in style along the avenue


I'm looking to install a camera system at my home. The only thing I've looked at are the systems NewEgg has on sale every so often and whatever I can find on Amazon. My main problem is I have no idea where to start with this; as of right now I don't know enough about this to even know what to research.

I'm looking for 4 to 6 outdoor cameras that run nonstop. I live in a neighborhood with a moderate amount of traffic/wildlife so a motion based system (assuming they exist) would be triggered constantly. Size isn't very important, but the smaller the better. I would also like to be able to view any camera on the fly, either from my computer or phone and I would like it to have night vision.also missiles

I don't want a subscription service if that makes any difference.

Where do I start? What do I need to know?

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



1: What is this system primarily being used for? (Are you trying to deter thieves? Have footage to give to police if there's a break in? Find out which neighbor's dog is digging up your flower bed?)
2: What is your budget? What is the value of the property you are trying to protect?
3: How long would you like to keep recordings for?
4: How dark does it get at night?
5: Do you leave your computer on 24x7?
6: How large of an area are you trying to cover? (Is your front yard 30 ft wide or 300 ft wide?)

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 1, 2013 around 01:03

chedemefedeme
May 25, 2007

Until then I need your help
figuring out the logistics!

Solid info. I'm just saying hello from the unofficial alarm/automation thread we've had going on over in DIY for a while now. Not a megapost or anything, but a thread where some decent questions have been posted and a few of us have been providing answers. http://forums.somethingawful.com/sh...hreadid=3462976

If you would permit I'd gladly offer input/insight on networking for folks. While not a professional security/camera installer myself I've designed and maintained network infrastructure for small and medium businesses for a living for a decade, as well as provided consulting on how IP cameras integrate into these networks.

On the hobby side I operate a network of 26 IP security cameras in my neighborhood that assists the neighborhood watch.

Glad to see more threads about this stuff. I was just thinking today how Google Glass is going to open a new window on the debate about cameras, where they should be, where they should not, etc. Honestly, with the exception of bathrooms or private residences, I'm pretty in favor of cameras everywhere. If you aren't doing anything wrong, what have you to fear! The boston bombings also showed how quickly a massive amount of private and public CCTV and other camera footage could provide assistance.

OP I'd love to hear about what software you prefer for small/mid size (say perhaps 2 to 50) camera installs. My favorite budget package is BlueIris, but I'm always looking for more tools for the box and would love your insight.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Absolutely. I have a fair bit of networking experience myself, but a second set of eyes is always welcome (Get 10 network engineers in a room and the only thing they'll agree on is that you need a larger budget). My weak spot is really alarms/fire systems, actually, so you'll probably complement me well.

As for the privacy concerns, that's going to get very interesting in the coming years. As far as I know, most laws regarding privacy (especially recording audio as part of surveillance) haven't been thoroughly tested in court. I'm a very pro-privacy person, so too much surveillance creeps me out (and I'm always aware of it, since I know where to look). That being said, it's important that we feel safe when we're out, and surveillance can absolutely play a huge part in that. I live in Buffalo, and the city put up over 100 cameras to deter and monitor crime, and I think they did a great job with it. The cameras are very overt, and don't really seem like a privacy concern. I'd probably feel differently if they put one outside my bedroom window, though.

For smaller installs, I like to recommend QNAP NVRs, since smaller environments don't usually have servers that can handle the load. For very small installs, you can't beat the Toshiba ESV16's price. When we start getting into the medium-sized solutions (24-64 cameras), I like to recommend Exacq or Lensec.

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 1, 2013 around 01:14

Cosmic Charlie
Apr 6, 2009

How do you do? Truckin' in style along the avenue


KillHour posted:

1: What is this system primarily being used for? (Are you trying to deter thieves? Have footage to give to police if there's a break in? Find out which neighbor's dog is digging up your flower bed?)
2: What is your budget? What is the value of the property you are trying to protect?
3: How long would you like to keep recordings for?
4: How dark does it get at night?
5: Do you leave your computer on 24x7?
6: How large of an area are you trying to cover? (Is your front yard 30 ft wide or 300 ft wide?)

1. Mainly theft deterrent, or at least having a picture of the person stealing my things. Actually everything you mentioned sounds neat, but I have cool neighbors so I'm good there.

2. I would like to spend less than $1000, property value over 100,000 if you mean home, cars, stuff like that.

3. No clue, I'm open to suggestions

4. There are street lamps along both roads, I live on a corner, so dark, but not country dark.

5. No, but not for any particular reason, save power I guess?

6. More along 30-40ft I guess? I would like to use one to see who is at my door before I open it, think electronic peephole.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



$1000 budget for 6 cameras is going to put you squarely in the "I picked this up from Sam's Club" category. Cameras like that are typically not going to tell you WHO stole your stuff, just that he was wearing black. Or was it blue? Maybe purple...

In order to get a rough idea of resolution needed to identify someone's face, take the horizontal size in ft of the area you're trying to cover and multiply by 150. That's the minimum horizontal resolution for a camera to cover that area.

For instance: 10ft * 150px/ft = 1500px, which would require a 1080p (1920x1080) camera to cover.

If you're only worried about getting faces at your door, this would be more than sufficient:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...VirtualParent=1

If you're worried about someone breaking in through a window, I'd recommend putting at least 1 camera inside your house at a choke point that they're likely to pass through (a doorway or staircase). Indoor cameras are less expensive, and generally need to cover less area.

Raised by Hamsters
Sep 16, 2007
and hopped up on bagels

I'm quite curious about basically the same things Cosmic Charlie is here - but I'll admit the extent of the research I have done is to think to myself, "Huh, that'd be nice." and glance at the kits that are on sale. I've basically assumed that all of the cheap kits will have terrible video quality.

Cosmic Charlie posted:

I would like to use one to see who is at my door before I open it, think electronic peephole.

This is the point that really interests me though. The way my house is set up, I can't see who is in the driveway or at the front door. I've thought about installing a security camera over the garage, and sending the video to a tablet glued to the wall by the door. Exactly how I would do this though, I haven't quite figured out.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



There's a few ways to accomplish that.

The most straightforward (but not necessarily the cheapsest) way is probably something like this:

This camera:
http://www.axis.com/products/cam_m2014e/

Plus this decoder:
http://www.axis.com/products/cam_p7701/index.htm

Plus a small PoE switch

Plus an HDMI/DVI monitor

Alternatively, any IP camera can be viewed with a tablet or laptop (or Chromebook) from the same network through a web browser or app. Pick a cheap one and create a shortcut to the IP.

Edit:

If you skip to 4:30 in this video, you can see the quality of a typical analog system you can pick up for less than 1k.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ukpvn1BijzU

You're not going to identify anyone in the video, but you'll at least know what happened.

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 1, 2013 around 02:05

Agatha Crispies
Jan 14, 2010

Contains 100% daily dose of little grey cells


Could you write about your experiences with biometric security systems? Such as what kinds of biometric security systems you've installed, how to install a system, how reliable biometrics actually are, etc. I know next to nothing about it but it seems really neat to me. I just remember using my fingerprint to sign in for my grocery store job back in highschool and thinking it was cool.

Thanks for starting this interesting thread!

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



I haven't installed too many biometrics systems other than testing for compatibility (I do design work, and don't have much installation exposure day-to-day), but I have a general understanding of how they are installed.

Most access control systems (including biometrics and card readers) are tied to a central controller using structured cabling. This controller is what makes decisions regarding authorization and what actions to take. A controller can typically handle between 1 and 8 doors, and multiple controllers can usually be connected, either through a serial interface or through the network.

If you want, I can go over the specific protocols these devices use to talk to each other.

As for the specific types of biometrics, here are a few of the more common ones:

Fingerprint - These can be either optical (takes a picture of your finger) or capacitive (works the same way as a touch screen). Optical readers are generally more accurate and aren't affected by temperature, and capacitive readers are less expensive. Capactitive readers are generally found on laptops.

Handprint - Same thing, but larger. Generally optical.

Hand Geometry - These measure the shape of your palm, and compare specific ratios (length to width, finger lengths relative to each other, etc.). Disney World used to use these before they went to fingerprint.

Vascular Pattern Recognition - These use infrared light to take a picture of your hand. The twist is that skin is transparent to IR light, but the hemoglobin in your blood isn't. This essentially leads to an "X-Ray" type image, except showing blood vessels instead of bone.

Retinal Scan - These work similarly to VPR, but project a beam of IR light into your eye to read the blood vessels on the back of your eye instead of in your hand. Vendors are very careful to point out that this beam is not a laser, but there isn't much practical difference. Very low (effectively 0) rate of false positives, but expensive and invasive. Not to be confused with Iris Scan.

Iris Scan - These take a picture of your iris (the colored portion of your eye), just like an optical fingerprint reader. Very simple for the user, and non invasive. Some Iris Scanners can read irises from several feet away as a person is walking, so they don't have to stop at a terminal to be scanned. Not to be confused with Retinal Scan, and vendors will point that out about 3 times every 5 minutes.

Other types exist, but are far less common.

Let me know if you want me to go into more detail about anything.

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 1, 2013 around 18:43

Solomonic
Jan 3, 2008

INCIPIT SANTA


Awesome thread, KillHour, thanks for making it. The firm I used to consult with did a whole lot of work with corporate security - although I mostly dealt with training out susceptibility to social engineering and other intangible-type stuff, I was always really fascinated by my coworkers who did physical security, intrusion, countermeasures, that kinda thing. So seeing this thread makes me happy, and I'll be following it with great interest.

In your opinion, what's the most common mistake people make when buying/setting up/maintaining/etc. surveillance networks?

TATPants
Mar 28, 2011


KillHour posted:


Iris Scan - These take a picture of your iris (the colored portion of your eye), just like an optical fingerprint reader. Very simple for the user, and non invasive. Some Iris Scanners can read irises from several feet away as a person is walking, so they don't have to stop at a terminal to be scanned. Not to be confused with Retinal Scan, and vendors will point that out about 3 times every 5 minutes.


I've got a question about the practicalities of the 'walking retina' scanner. In order for this to work well, wouldn't you would need an insanely high resolution camera or one with great magnification and an equally high quality tracking/positioning system to take a (let's say) 100x100 px image of an eye? Plus all the crazy fast calculations the computer would have to make in ~3s...this system has to be ridiculously expensive. I would really appreciate any more details about this if you have the time - it seems fascinating

chedemefedeme
May 25, 2007

Until then I need your help
figuring out the logistics!

Cosmic Charlie posted:

2. I would like to spend less than $1000, property value over 100,000 if you mean home, cars, stuff like that.


KillHour posted:

$1000 budget for 6 cameras is going to put you squarely in the "I picked this up from Sam's Club" category. Cameras like that are typically not going to tell you WHO stole your stuff, just that he was wearing black. Or was it blue? Maybe purple...

Totally true that the sams club all in one packs are pretty much crap. You really dont get any real detail or ability to tell who did what other than..that someone did something.


I'll throw out my opinion on a sub $1000 system. This is not to say KillHour is wrong, but rather more of a DIY approach than he likely considers since he deals with this stuff professionally.

Cosmic Charlie, you could consider a more DIY approach. If you have a spare PC, the ability to run CAT5 cable, and some intermediate networking skills you could buy:
2x Ubiquiti Aircam 3 pack ( http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...s2&tag=bie08-20 )
1x License for BlueIris ( http://www.blueirissoftware.com/ )

Comes in under a grand! All that's left is some DIY work.

The AirCam is a 720p widescreen, weatherproof camera that is powered over ethernet. Makes them very easy to install. Just pull cat5 to where you want and hook them up through the included POE injectors to your home network.

BlueIris, while certainly not something you'll see used at a 50+ camera install, is a very powerful piece of software these days. For $50 it has features many multi hundred dollar programs have yet still has consumer like features such as android/ios apps and a point-and-click windows interface.

I'm not affiliated with Ubiquiti or BlueIris, but this is what the majority of the 26 camera system I operate in my neighborhood works on. Deff higher end stuff available, and deff not for anyone who just wants plug and forget performance...but for under a grand you won't find anything plug and forget that has image quality worth a darn.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Ah, yes. I had completely forgotten about Ubiquiti. It's a company we don't carry (but are working on getting), but I've heard good things.

Solomonic posted:

In your opinion, what's the most common mistake people make when buying/setting up/maintaining/etc. surveillance networks?

For someone who's unfamiliar with cameras, it has to be infrastructure. People think that storage, power, networking and installation are all free, and don't plan properly for the costs. They also tend to think that all cameras are more or less the same (and also magic), which leads to people demanding that I build a system with no more information than "8 outdoor cameras, 1 month recording, $2000 budget" and then proceed to get mad when I tell them that I need more information. And more money.

(Not picking on Cosmic Charlie, here. These are people with real businesses and real high expectations that should have real budgets to go along with those.)

TATPants posted:

I've got a question about the practicalities of the 'walking retina' scanner. In order for this to work well, wouldn't you would need an insanely high resolution camera or one with great magnification and an equally high quality tracking/positioning system to take a (let's say) 100x100 px image of an eye? Plus all the crazy fast calculations the computer would have to make in ~3s...this system has to be ridiculously expensive. I would really appreciate any more details about this if you have the time - it seems fascinating

They're obscenely expensive and bleeding edge. I don't have a ton of information about them, since I've never worked with anyone that wanted to plunk down for one.

Here's an example to oogle at, though:

http://www.sri.com/engage/products-...t-portal-system

Edit:

They have one that will capture your iris in a drive through.

http://www.sri.com/engage/products-...ognition-system

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 2, 2013 around 02:52

Cosmic Charlie
Apr 6, 2009

How do you do? Truckin' in style along the avenue


Thanks for all the help guys, I greatly appreciate it, now I can work on making this a reality!

Not an Anthem
Apr 27, 2003

I'm a fucking pain machine and if you even touch my fucking car I WILL FUCKING DESTROY YOU.


I have a Synology NAS that supports IP Camera capture/logging and remote interface. I don't have a need for a security camera, but it was more of a "oh, I can do this now, maybe it'd be fun to play with" for either identifying people outside my building or just for security.

My question is more from a deterrent view, are cameras an actual deterrent, or is the sole value of the camera recording the break-in/etc when it happens, and then isn't an alarm system on doors/windows a better first move?

My brother in law is looking at getting a system too, so I love reading stuff like this just to know where its at, technology-wise.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Not an Anthem posted:

I have a Synology NAS that supports IP Camera capture/logging and remote interface. I don't have a need for a security camera, but it was more of a "oh, I can do this now, maybe it'd be fun to play with" for either identifying people outside my building or just for security.

My question is more from a deterrent view, are cameras an actual deterrent, or is the sole value of the camera recording the break-in/etc when it happens, and then isn't an alarm system on doors/windows a better first move?

My brother in law is looking at getting a system too, so I love reading stuff like this just to know where its at, technology-wise.

Cameras are actually far better as deterrents than they are as reactive security measures. The reason for this is simply that people greatly overestimate the capabilities of a camera. People assume that cameras are all like the cameras they have on CSI, and have 11 billion megapixels and magic "identify people from their reflection in a window" software. Even if you know that most cameras are junk, it's still extremely hard to tell how good a camera is just by looking at it. That, and 90% of people would rather stop a crime than solve one, so the relative value of a camera as a deterrent is greater even if it's equally competent at both.

Besides, what's the first thing you do when you notice a camera looking at you? You probably look straight at it for 2-3 seconds. Are you going to break into that house after you did that?

As an anecdote, I had a customer that wanted to return some cameras I sold him and replace them with more discrete cameras. Apparently, when he installed them, people stopped vandalizing and stealing from his store. He didn't want to deter them from doing so, he wanted to catch them.

Edit:

Although, if the thief is smart/gutsy, he may just try to steal your DVR instead. Make sure that's in a lockbox.

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 2, 2013 around 17:03

chedemefedeme
May 25, 2007

Until then I need your help
figuring out the logistics!

KillHour posted:

Ah, yes. I had completely forgotten about Ubiquiti. It's a company we don't carry (but are working on getting), but I've heard good things.

They certainly are not bank grade cameras, nor are they good for things like license plate capture in most settings, but they are amazing cameras for the price.

Ubiquit isn't a camera maker, really. They're just dabbling in this. They're a company who makes very high end network equipment at prices that pretty much disrupt the hell out of the market. Their AirCam line is a start that direction for IP security but there is a long way to go.

Their cameras don't quite fit the "high end" category their network gear does, but they're still an insane value. Grab a pack and play with them. The bullets are my favorite so far - they're the weatherproof ones. The domes are not for outside use and the minis are just...not that useful. Well, I actually have an aircam mini with a screw through it's base mounted on my front porch where its fairly weather protected. Works nicely and is smaller than the bullets.

Agatha Crispies
Jan 14, 2010

Contains 100% daily dose of little grey cells


Thank you for responding so thoroughly.

KillHour posted:


If you want, I can go over the specific protocols these devices use to talk to each other.


I'd love to hear more about it!

KillHour posted:


Vascular Pattern Recognition - These use infrared light to take a picture of your hand. The twist is that skin is transparent to IR light, but the hemoglobin in your blood isn't. This essentially leads to an "X-Ray" type image, except showing blood vessels instead of bone.


Wow, that's fascinating, I've never really seen/heard of that before. I wonder what kinds of companies/agencies employ that kind of security.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Agatha Crispies posted:

Thank you for responding so thoroughly.

I'd love to hear more about it!

Spergy Post Ahead!

Wikipedia has some good diagrams for this, but I can't access image hosting sites from work, so I'll try to explain it as best I can.

The "brains" of an access control system is the controller.

A controller pretty much looks like a bare circuit board. Sometimes they're in a cabinet, but most of the time they're mounted directly to a wood board on the wall.

This GIS should give you a decent idea:

https://www.google.com/search?q=acc...iw=1920&bih=955

These boards connect to devices and each other with phoenix connectors (screw down terminals), so structured cabling (Think Cat5 without the ends) is typically used.

The first connection you need to think about is the one from the reader to the controller. A reader has no direct control over the door. Instead of sending an "open door" command, the reader just repeats the information it was given to the controller, and the controller makes all the decisions. It's similar to a restaurant - the waiter takes your order, and the cook decides what do to with it. There are several different types of connection between the reader and controller, but 3 are the most popular:

Wiegand - By far the most popular, this is the original connection type for readers. The term Wiegand is actually very vague, since it used to describe an entire type of access control system. Now it's typically used to describe one of three things - the connection between the reader and the controller, the data format stored on the card, and the transmission protocol between the card and reader. Of these, only the first two are still in common use.

The way Wiegand works is actually very simple. It requires a minimum of 4 wires - D0, D1, +12VDC and Ground. In order to send a message, the system will send pulses (or bits) down either the D0 or D1 wire. A pulse down the D0 wire is the binary equivalent of 0, and a pulse down the D1 wire is the binary equivalent of 1. So in order to send the following message: 0110, you would send pulses down the wires in the following order: D0, D1, D1, D0. This eliminates the need for a common clock between the devices and predefined "header" and "footer" messages.

Clock and Data - C&D is very similar to Wiegand, except that instead of D0 and D1 wires, it has C(lock) and D(ata) wires. The C wire carries a pulse at a set interval. If the D wire has a pulse on it at the same time, the controller considers it a 1, else it is a 0. So, to send the same 0110 message, you would need to send the following: C, C+D, C+D, C.

RS485 - RS485 is a serial communication standard that is far more complex than either Wiegand or C&D. The advantage of this is that unlike the other two, RS485 is bidirectional, and can send information both from the reader to the controller and from the controller to the reader. Wiegand and C&D can only send data from the reader to the controller. The downside is that these systems are typically proprietary, and readers and controllers of different brands will not talk to each other, while all Wiegand/C&D readers will work with all Wiegand/C&D controllers.

I'll get into communication between card and reader, card formats and inter-controller communications in another post.

1550NM
Aug 31, 2004
Frossen fisk

Please go deeper into the card to reader details. I'm currently wondering why my EM4102 cards are happy to work with my HiTag2 based reader, but not the other way around. Oh the joys of dissimilar access control on the same premise.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Sorry I haven't been updating the thread. Just got back from vacation. I'll go deeper into card communication tomorrow, but to answer your question quickly:

Looking at the EM4102, that looks like a 125khz card.

http://www.trossenrobotics.com/stor...-RFID-Tags.aspx

Any 125khz reader should work with any 125khz card unless the reader has a controller built into it. If the reader has an integrated controller, the controller needs to be able to understand the format of the card. You can think of it like a bar code - any 2d barcode reader can read any 2d barcode and spit out binary, but the backend system needs to be able to parse the data.

The short answer is likely that he HiTag2 system is designed to be more open than the other system you have in place.

Warm und Fuzzy
Jun 20, 2006



When are we going to start seeing 3D laser scanning technology in security systems? I have to imagine there are prototypes in place somewhere. If not, do you want to create a startup?

Midjack
Dec 24, 2007

But it soon became quite clear that while losers flourished everywhere, winners were a rare and reticent breed with preferences for camouflage and anonymity.

Warm und Fuzzy posted:

When are we going to start seeing 3D laser scanning technology in security systems? I have to imagine there are prototypes in place somewhere. If not, do you want to create a startup?

What do you hope to do with it that isn't handled as effectively or better by existing technology? That's one reason biometrics has been such a turd; it's expensive and often doesn't work as well as 125kHz cards or some other existing access control solution.

Warm und Fuzzy
Jun 20, 2006



Midjack posted:

What do you hope to do with it that isn't handled as effectively or better by existing technology? That's one reason biometrics has been such a turd; it's expensive and often doesn't work as well as 125kHz cards or some other existing access control solution.

Not for access control, but to replace ptz cameras. Think an Xbox Kinect. Having a 3D point cloud of a perpetrator would give you extremely precise data, like height, shoe size, walking gate, etc.

YankeeAirPirate
Jun 3, 2006

"Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work."

e

YankeeAirPirate fucked around with this message at May 29, 2013 around 20:45

Gromit
Aug 15, 2000

I am an oppressed White Male, Asian women wont serve me! Save me Campbell Newman!!!!!!!


Are there any good keyless entry systems for houses that work just like cars? I like the idea of just hitting my remote and having the alarm switch on or off the the front door lock/unlock. Obviously there'd be a keyhole and alarm panel for those times the power goes dead.
I'd hope you could make one a lot more secure than a car so people couldn't sniff the code or something. Someone breaking into my car is less of an issue to me than my house.

themrguy
Dec 15, 2008


Do those gadgets to spoof security card readers/biometrics/etc exist outside of movies or the inventories of places like the CIA? To put it another way, would a competent professional criminal (someone who may not be Jason Bourne, but has more equipment and professionalism than a crackhead or delinquent youth) have access to stuff like that? Or would they be more likely to say "gently caress it" and kick the door down/hold a gun to someone's head?

Midjack
Dec 24, 2007

But it soon became quite clear that while losers flourished everywhere, winners were a rare and reticent breed with preferences for camouflage and anonymity.

themrguy posted:

Do those gadgets to spoof security card readers/biometrics/etc exist outside of movies or the inventories of places like the CIA? To put it another way, would a competent professional criminal (someone who may not be Jason Bourne, but has more equipment and professionalism than a crackhead or delinquent youth) have access to stuff like that? Or would they be more likely to say "gently caress it" and kick the door down/hold a gun to someone's head?

Crime doesn't have much of an R&D budget, though they'll happily use poo poo like this when all they have to do is get a nerd to wire some stuff up for them.

Destructive entry is always #1, and when you're stealing stuff you don't care as much if anyone finds out afterwards because hey, stuff is missing.

Gromit posted:

Are there any good keyless entry systems for houses that work just like cars? I like the idea of just hitting my remote and having the alarm switch on or off the the front door lock/unlock. Obviously there'd be a keyhole and alarm panel for those times the power goes dead.
I'd hope you could make one a lot more secure than a car so people couldn't sniff the code or something. Someone breaking into my car is less of an issue to me than my house.

Cars and garage door openers went to rolling codes years ago so replay attacks don't work anywhere near as well as they used to. Keyfob remotes for home alarm and automation systems exist, or you can get a remotely-actuated relay and roll your own if the commercial offerings don't do what you want. Remotely-actuated locks are not common, though you could get an electric strike or magnetic latch and tie it into the alarm or a relay and get it that way. It's expense and complexity, and you need a hand free to work the fob anyway, so I haven't run into anyone yet who put one in and thought it was worth it.

Edit: vvvv I think it's dumb on cars too but try buying one without it anymore. It's not standard on buildings yet.

Midjack fucked around with this message at May 28, 2013 around 04:17

Gromit
Aug 15, 2000

I am an oppressed White Male, Asian women wont serve me! Save me Campbell Newman!!!!!!!


Midjack posted:

It's expense and complexity, and you need a hand free to work the fob anyway, so I haven't run into anyone yet who put one in and thought it was worth it.

Thanks for the info, but you need a free hand to operate your car as well and keyless entry seems pretty popular with those. I would also get endless amusement from my front door going "boop boop" and having the porch-lights flash when I unlock it.
It's just one of those things I think I would like without being too gimmicky and possibly annoying like having biometric security on your front door.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Warm und Fuzzy posted:

When are we going to start seeing 3D laser scanning technology in security systems? I have to imagine there are prototypes in place somewhere. If not, do you want to create a startup?

It's possible to do a 3d scan of a person, but the resolution required to actually identify someone coupled with a computer powerful enough to do it would probably be too expensive to consider. Current techniques work very well for the majority of use cases. If I was going to make a startup, it would be using commercial grade security cameras as video conferencing systems. Seriously, you can get an HD PTZ IP camera for $2000 bucks, but an HD codec + camera from Cisco or Polycom costs 10-20 grand on the low end, and the protocols are all the same (H.264, G.711).

Warm und Fuzzy posted:

Not for access control, but to replace ptz cameras. Think an Xbox Kinect. Having a 3D point cloud of a perpetrator would give you extremely precise data, like height, shoe size, walking gate, etc.

The range for something like this isn't good enough. They'd need to be less than 10 ft or so from the sensors, and it would make more sense just to take a picture of their face than try to identify them by gait. Laser rangefinders attached to a camera can pinpoint their exact position, but that's generally only needed if you're trying to shoot them.



themrguy posted:

Do those gadgets to spoof security card readers/biometrics/etc exist outside of movies or the inventories of places like the CIA? To put it another way, would a competent professional criminal (someone who may not be Jason Bourne, but has more equipment and professionalism than a crackhead or delinquent youth) have access to stuff like that? Or would they be more likely to say "gently caress it" and kick the door down/hold a gun to someone's head?


Kind of, sort of, not really.

Some headway was made in cloning DESFire RFID cards awhile back, but that hole was plugged. RFID is like encryption - implemented properly, it's mathematically impossible to crack in a reasonable time frame. 125khz cards are NOT secure for reasons I will go into in my next post. Don't use them for real security.

As for biometric spoofing - it's probably possible, but can be very difficult. Most modern systems have anti-spoofing mechanisms to help detect forgeries, and getting someone to stand still while you take an imprint of their finger isn't exactly easy.

Also, the CIA doesn't have anything you can't get on the open market with enough money. When a 3 letter agency wants to do something they saw in a movie, they generally call me to ask if it's possible. General rule: With access control, it usually is. With surveillance, it almost always isn't. It may sound counter intuitive, but access control is leaps and bounds ahead of surveillance in terms of capabilities. As a species, we've been making locks for centuries, after all.

I'd stick with kicking the door down, personally. (Unless they have this door: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FD2paju93aI. Maybe try breaking in through a window? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRtDc2_SI40)

Gromit posted:

Thanks for the info, but you need a free hand to operate your car as well and keyless entry seems pretty popular with those. I would also get endless amusement from my front door going "boop boop" and having the porch-lights flash when I unlock it.
It's just one of those things I think I would like without being too gimmicky and possibly annoying like having biometric security on your front door.

How about with an app on your phone?

http://www.crestron.com/about/press...release_id=1780



Hope you have 5 figures lying around.

KillHour fucked around with this message at May 28, 2013 around 05:21

Kemper Boyd
Aug 6, 2007

no kings, no gods, no masters but a comfy chair and no socks


About surveillance, there's lots of things that you can do to improve your (kinda fuzzy on the english-language word here) metrics i.e. what data you get out from your equipment. Like magtriggers on every door, pressure plates, that whole 3d laser scanning thing and so on.

However, improved metrics don't necessarily translate to something working better. If you use a camera system for surveillance, you probably want to know how a possible intruder looks like and what they are doing. Improving your metrics doesn't really add much to that, especially since the costs start to go up ten- or hundredfold.

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Kemper Boyd posted:

About surveillance, there's lots of things that you can do to improve your (kinda fuzzy on the english-language word here) metrics i.e. what data you get out from your equipment. Like magtriggers on every door, pressure plates, that whole 3d laser scanning thing and so on.

However, improved metrics don't necessarily translate to something working better. If you use a camera system for surveillance, you probably want to know how a possible intruder looks like and what they are doing. Improving your metrics doesn't really add much to that, especially since the costs start to go up ten- or hundredfold.

Exactly. A good term for this is "project scope". The first part of every design is to figure out why the customer needs a security system in the first place. I can talk all day about something that's really cool on a conceptual basis, but I won't sell any of them if it won't help accomplish a customer's goals.

1550NM
Aug 31, 2004
Frossen fisk

The keep it simple premise is something to strive for even in security. I have inherited support for an access control/intrusion detection/camera surveillance/every thing and the kitchen sink including laundromat control system. It's a god-drat nightmare, global overrides local options, sometimes or the other way around. Or global and local setting must match up or you end up in a dead zone with nothing working even tough global setting should have precedent. Camera integration is atrocious.

Breaking everything up into three separate systems cut false positives and trouble calls to almost zero.

Gromit
Aug 15, 2000

I am an oppressed White Male, Asian women wont serve me! Save me Campbell Newman!!!!!!!


KillHour posted:

How about with an app on your phone?

http://www.crestron.com/about/press...release_id=1780



Hope you have 5 figures lying around.

Urgh, that looks like poo poo, with a price to match. How can they even justify five figures for something as simple as that?
Guess I'll have to stick with old faithful key entry for my new house. drat this Luddite existence!

KillHour
Oct 28, 2007

Wake up and
smell the murder.



Gromit posted:

Urgh, that looks like poo poo, with a price to match. How can they even justify five figures for something as simple as that?
Guess I'll have to stick with old faithful key entry for my new house. drat this Luddite existence!

It's not five figures for the lock, it's five figures for the back-end system the lock integrates with. Crestron is for rich people who can't stand the idea of their home theater NOT having lights that automatically dim when you press play. (It does a bunch of other cool stuff that makes it totally worth it if you can afford it and go all-out, but that's definitely the target market.)

This might be more along the lines of what you're looking for:

http://www.smarthome.com/51890/MiLo...lt-Brass/p.aspx


Edit: I promise I'll stop procrastinating on writing up the rest of the access control stuff. I've been really busy looking for a new house. Hopefully I'll have 15 minutes tomorrow.

KillHour fucked around with this message at Jun 3, 2013 around 01:55

JohnnyRnR
May 16, 2004
Beer Ninja

What are the liability issues for tear gas canisters designed to vent into a man-trap? I've always heard rumors that there are companies that will install those types of systems, but I've never actually seen one for sale. Do they exist?

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Slanderer
May 6, 2007

anger issues


JohnnyRnR posted:

What are the liability issues for tear gas canisters designed to vent into a man-trap? I've always heard rumors that there are companies that will install those types of systems, but I've never actually seen one for sale. Do they exist?

uh....

You know how illegal that sort of thing is in the US, right?

EDIT:

For the OP:

How expensive is the gear for managing lots of analog cameras today? Is it all straight digitized nowadays, or do they still do weird stuff with switching arrays and transmitting alternating frames and other strange poo poo?

Slanderer fucked around with this message at Jun 4, 2013 around 03:32

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