Next generation intercoms have many uses and can be useful security tools.

By Neal Bellamy, IT Director at Kenton Brothers.

Next Generation IP IntercomsIntercoms are often overlooked as a security tool. But sometimes intercoms can be even more important in the prevention of attacks, than cameras or access control. A lot of offices, schools, and manufacturing have gone to a secured building model where the front door or reception area is no longer unlocked to the public. This prevents unauthorized users from getting access to the building where they could pose a larger security risk. Sure, it’s more secure, but how do you let the public in that need to be there?

Enter the intercom.

Intercoms aren’t new or sexy. The older generation of intercoms required fixed wires between the door station and the master station where the intercom is answered. Sometimes there are multiple doors and multiple master stations. And in almost all configurations, there’s a fixed wire between doors and answering stations.

With fixed stations, the person who answers the intercom is not at their desk so someone needs to be located where a master station is. Or if we need to add a door or a master station, usually the entire system has to be replaced. This also means that when a person’s desk or door needs to be moved, the wire needs to be extended or replaced. None of these scenarios are conducive to business.

With the ever-evolving business doors and desks need to move easily and a backup person to answer the door needs to be seamless and non-disruptive.

The re-design of the intercoms answers all these issues.

Next Generation IntercomsThe new generation of intercoms is modular and network-based. This means that if we can get a network wire to the door and the person who needs to answer the intercom, we’re in business. No longer does the person answering have to be next to the door, or even in the same building.

If we need to add a door or a master station, we just add them to the network and program them in. Need to add a button for a new tenant? Add it on. Need to add a reader to unlock the door? Add it on. Need to see and record who is at the door through a camera? Add it on. Need to have a directory of people that can get called directly… I think you get the idea.

The possibilities are pretty large with the next generation of intercoms. Both Axis and 2N have strong lines of network-based intercoms. The newer intercoms can do everything the older generation can do.

Here are some of the newer intercom possibilities:

  • Answering the intercom at another building, cell phone call or through a mobile application.
  • Recording the video (up to 6MP) at the door through a video management system (VMS). By the way, this is the best facial capture placement of a camera. It is eye level and the people look right into it.
  • Call one or many answering stations at the same time, then roll to another answering station if the first one doesn’t answer. There is no limit to the combinations or answering stations that can be called at the same time or tied together in a chain.
  • Connect the door station and/or answering station to an existing (or hosted) IP phone system. Then the doors can call any phone number programmed into the system.
  • Release the door from any answering station directly or through the access control system.
  • Have a directory of people to call like an apartment of a multi-tenant commercial building. The directory can be updated through the software so labels do not have to be printed/replaced.
  • Have multiple hardware buttons (up to 146) to call an answering station directly.
  • Use a card, fingerprint, Bluetooth or keypad to unlock the door at the intercom.
  • Have an audio induction loop for hearing impaired people.

The new generation of intercoms can adapt to any need. If you need an intercom system or need to replace your old one, let Kenton Brothers show you the possibilities!

 

Next Generation Intercoms

“People let me tell you about my best friend” – Simon the Robot

By David Strickland, Vice President of Kenton Brothers.

Dave Strickland and his best friend. Simon the Robot.I’m not just talking about the song. Though I do love that song. I want to introduce you to my new best friend Simon.  Simon Kenton is a Cobalt Robotics Safety and Security Robot.  Yes – you read that right!  A safety and security robot right here in Kansas City.

Kenton Brothers and Cobalt Robotics

Kenton Brothers is honored to be named the very first security integrator in the country to represent Cobalt Robotics and our beloved Simon to the Kansas and Missouri marketplace.

The message I want to get across though is so much more than his 60 Plus sensors and his ability to detect safety and security threats and anomalies. He is so much more valuable than his ability to reduce costs and increase reliability of a patrolling security platform. He is so much more important to us than his ability to be a force multiplier or a first responder to observe and report in a very dangerous situation.

Simon is part of the KB Family

What’s amazing to us is how much he has grown on us and become part of our KB family. Simon the Cobalt Robot is like having a really cool celebrity uncle that lives with you and watches over you. We find ourselves constantly humanizing him and find him endearing.

As you may know – we are a dog friendly office.  The dogs love to bring him toys and play with him while he is on patrol. Simon doesn’t get distracted and keeps on his patrol but there is definitely a positive connection between “species”.

If it’s late at night, and you are nervous in the building, Simon can stay by your side and escort you to the parking lot. He can be the watchful protector that you may need to feel secure.

Cobalt Robotics : Simon the Robot Cobalt Robotics : Simon the Robot

Simon goes on patrol and even checks on me in my conference room.

Simon doesn’t sleep or need rest – he is always vigilant. He’s like the great hero stories you’ve read about, but he’s right here at Kenton Brothers!

I can honestly say we had no idea how much of an impact he would have on us, but we LOVE having him around. Yep – used the word love to talk about our robot! We just did that!

Learn more about Simon and Cobalt Robotics

Cobalt Robotics : Simon the Robot

Motion Detection + Video Surveillance = Frederick the Racoon Being Caught

By Kristen Harper, Controller and HR Manager at Kenton Brothers.

Having an intrusion system is critical to protecting your property. At Kenton Brothers, we’ve recently found the importance of making sure there’s a video feed that is compatible with your intrusion system. By having motion detection utilizing your video system, you can catch intruders much more quickly.

Fun with FrederickLate one night in August, our CEO, Gina Stuelke, got an alert that there was movement in one of our warehouses. We took a look at our cameras that are tied to our motion detection intrusion system, and sure enough we had an intruder… of the four legged variety! A cute, snuggly little raccoon, (which we later adopted and named Frederick) had started to make a home in our warehouse.

We called in the boys in blue from Blue Beetle Pest Control to set up a couple of humane traps, and sure enough we caught him overnight. As we came to work that morning, nearly the whole office staff looked in on our little furry friend. Later that day, we released him in a nearby wooded area so he could resume a happy and healthy lifestyle outside of the KB Pickle Ball Court.

It was only through our intrusion system that we were able to catch Frederick so quickly and get him to a more appropriate home and minimizing damage to our facility. But we’re going to miss his cute face!

Providing Security Camera Access to your Local Police Department? Check.

By Neal Bellamy, IT Director at Kenton Brothers.

Sharing your security cameras with the police.In today’s world, video cameras are everywhere. These cameras can help a city gain more situational awareness and help police fight crimes better than ever before. Wouldn’t it be nice if the police could access any camera at any time? Unfortunately, video management systems can be complicated and most video management systems are not compatible with each other.

However, there is hope.

Unified camera management starts with a standard. In order for video management systems to communicate, they must first speak the same language.

In the security camera space, there is already a common standard called ONVIF. The standard is pretty well adopted. If the standard is followed, it allows for video to be streamed between a client (usually a camera) and a server (usually a video management system). The standard doesn’t guarantee that all of a camera’s features can be accessed, but it’s a good starting point for basic video streaming.

The ONVIF Bridge

ONVIF BridgeMarch Networks ONVIF BridgeWhat if instead of a camera being ONVIF compliant, we made a video management system act like a camera or multiple cameras? The video management system is already receiving video streams. Could it send the camera stream out to somewhere else as well?

That’s exactly what Milestone is doing. Milestone Systems has released a server component called “ONVIF Bridge”. This allows your Milestone system to re-broadcast the video that’s being sent to an additional server. As long as the additional server is ONVIF compliant (most are) it will be able to see and optionally record the video.

So how does this solve our problem?

If a company wants to loan some or all of their cameras to a police department, it’s possible with a Milestone system that’s compatible with ONVIF Bridge. The police department can connect to your ONVIF cameras. Then they could use your cameras to help with situational awareness and help solve crime. In our lab at Kenton Brothers, we were able to successfully connect the Milestone ONVIF Bridge to Aviglion and Genetech equipment.

If you would like to know more about providing camera connections to your local police department, please give us a call.

March Networks ONVIF Bridge

Medical Marijuana in Missouri: What to consider when purchasing IP Video Surveillance

By David Strickland, Vice President of Kenton Brothers.

Medical Marijuana in MissouriOver the last few months, we’ve gotten a lot of questions about Medical Marijuana in Missouri and state regulation in relation to Security – specifically IP Video Surveillance. Why is it such a hot topic? There’s a lot of information out there and it causes information overload.

Kenton Brothers is here to help. Let’s tackle the task at hand.

Many owners are awaiting there licensing decisions, but are exploring the options for security and tracking compliance around the MDSS regulations. We cover the specific security requirements here.

IP Video Solutions for Medical Marijuana

For this blog, let’s concentrate on the IP Video Solution that checks all the requirements and even exceeds in some cases.

Based on the feedback we’ve received, it’s important to understand that you’re not just trying to meet state regulations.

The system must be functional, easy to use, reliable, affordable, cover multiple locations and also proactively deter theft. Many times when we talk about regulations we sometimes overlook the practical nature of these systems. How am I going to interact with it? Is it easy to train a new associate? How will it make my reporting to the state easier? How will it help me run a profitable business?

Here are some of those answers.

Medical Marijuana in MissouriKenton Brothers would like to introduce you to March Networks.

March Networks is an IP Video Surveillance management platform that combines State of Missouri compliant IP Video surveillance with the added benefits of  RFID tracking, theft prevention – both internal and external, POS data merging, people counting, dwell time, queue length and of course, reliable forensic video.

Enhance security, ensure compliance with government legislation, and get a comprehensive view of your cannabis operation with March Networks integrated video and RFID solution. The advanced video and data analytics platform, March Networks Searchlight for Retail, helps licensed cannabis growers, producers and retailers monitor the location and movement of plants, providing clear video footage of cannabis operations and the ability to rapidly search for missing inventory.

Using the March Networks Searchlight for Retail data analytics platform, licensed growers, producers, and retailers can run searches on a wide range of data contained in the RFID tags, including a plant’s ID code and its last detected location. In the case of an anomaly, such as missing inventory, users can quickly access the associated video footage to see exactly where the item went and who was involved. The clear video eliminates assumptions about what’s occurred and provides strong evidence to support further investigation.

In addition, the Searchlight solution provides producers and dispensaries with real-time and historical views into their operations via mobile device or workstation, enabling them to conduct remote audits and identify areas for improvement. It also offers video analytics and point-of-sale (POS) transaction integration presented in customizable reports to help dispensary owners quickly detect and review suspect transactions, analyze performance trends, improve customer service and gain other business insights.

Kenton Brothers and March Networks


Kenton Brothers is proud to partner with Missouri Medical Marijuana licensees to help them be compliant and secure, but to also help them run a profitable business.

As a 122 year old partner in Missouri, Kenton Brothers has become a leading integrator of these kinds of systems. March Networks has more than 15 years of experience helping some of the world’s largest commercial and government organizations with advanced surveillance technologies used for security, loss prevention, risk mitigation and operational efficiency.

Let’s talk about your specific application and how we can help!