This patent was originally filed in 2012—a time when using smartphones by security personnel was rare. The technology was disruptive and innovative and this patent is now being used by security guards around the world, so the recent patent granting validates TrackTik’s tremendous achievement.
Most security companies rely on electronic surveillance equipment monitored by security officers at a centralized location. However, recent developments in the industry seem intent on trying to replace human security guards with technology solutions like robots and drones to address security problems, but we doubt that will ever happen. Security guards are first responders in more ways than one. They help people stay calm in difficult situations and are capable of emotional intelligence. Robots, drones, and AI should be used in conjunction with human guards, but more on that here.
Not all security companies use a combination of guards in conjunction with electronic equipment. Most of the time, they use one guard who monitors a live video feed over a computer monitor or an alarm panel for fire alarms, intrusion, theft, vandalism, or other alerts, which is a reactive approach to security. A company falls victim to a threat, assesses the damage, and installs security cameras to provide video surveillance of the area. Unfortunately, reactive security has a greater potential for incidents to occur that can’t be mitigated or acted upon in a timely manner. In addition, these methods are prone to hacking. For example, one hacking method freezes the picture displayed on the camera while other methods disable the camera and provide a feed of pre-recorded video of the area being monitored instead like they do in spy movies.
Conventional technologies usually require security officers to perform some sort of data recording or scanning using a smartphone to transfer data at the end of a shift, so a guard has to connect to the smartphone to transfer the data to a local database.
TrackTik’s patent changed the way security companies and guards monitor locations by employing NFC tags. NFC (Near Field Communication) is an evolution of RFID technology and enables secure wireless connectivity between two devices to exchange data. NFC tags are tiny integrated chips connected to an antenna. The chips have a unique ID and can interact with an NFC reader or scanner, like an NFC-enabled smartphone. You can write information on the available memory of an NFC tag by simply tapping the tag with your smartphone.
In the security service industry, there are a myriad of ways that the NFC tokens can be deployed including dividing the NFC tags into groups, associating different functions to each different group of NFC tags like using the NFC tags to represent checkpoints in a secured location that can be scanned by a mobile device or smartphone. And more.
Smartphones can also use GPS tracking to receive the position of the phone, trigger an alarm if a guard remains in a certain location for too long, or trigger another alarm if a guard isn’t in the desired location. Data from the mobile device is sent to a remote server in real time. The technology also includes a panic alarm feature that can be used to send alerts or send audio or video files from a smartphone to the server.
Read the Press Release