Across the UAE, airports will be launching biometric screening systems in a project to upgrade the physical security with multimodal measures including eGates.
The project has been prompted, according to ministry officials, by ‘numerous security challenges in the region’ and as Dubai International airport in particular expects more than 80 million passengers during the coming year, the requirements for improved security measures are clear.
In addition to airport security, the plans are expected to include all the country’s borders, with the implementation of fingerprint, eye and facial scanning technology. eGates will strengthen security immediately and help with screening and tracking of passengers leaving and entering the country.
Across the world we see international airports making improvements to physical and biometric security – a result of increased threats from terror organisations all over the globe.
In a project that is to start next year, Bangladesh will be investing $4m to improve security at four airports in a bid to bring a halt to smuggling.
The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) has issued approval for the improvements at Hazrat Shahjahal International and Hazrat Shah Amanat International Airports for the installation of primary and secondary surveillance radar in addition to a state-of-the-art security system at Shahjahal.
The project, named Bangladesh Airports Safety & Security System Improvement, will also see enhanced vehicle parking control systems, pedestrian access control, additional CCTV and baggage X-ray scanners, specifically designed to halt the gold smuggling activities that were reported earlier this year.
During the meeting, the ECNEC stated that to develop the system infrastructure for the airports would cost an additional $5m to the original estimate of $2m.
$4m will be sponsored by Denmark, and it will be left to the Bangladeshi Government to raise the additional required funds.
Physical airport security is growing increasingly necessary at airports across the globe. With the threat of terrorist movements and smuggling, airport security providers are searching the very latest technological advancements to ensure national security in addition to the safety of passengers, aircraft and flight crew.
A recent inspection of Delhi Airport perimeter security by the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) has raised concerns to the point that they have refused to take over the system unless it becomes ‘totally flawless’. The system seems to be fraught with technical problems which have caused false alarms and intermittent CCTV capture.
This is not the first inspection that has failed at the airport, in spite of approximately Rs 5 crore being spent on ‘improvements’. The CISF have met with airport officials around 50 times and so far, there are no changes. This final meeting has resulted in the CISF to demand of the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) that either the system be deactivated or a solution finally provided for the perimeter security.
G M Siddeswara, the Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation had informed parliament that the system was flawless, but this is disputed by the CISF.
The CISF referred to a recent airport intrusion where perimeter security was compromised and said, “When that happened on Thursday the CISF personnel saw the intruder but the CCTV didn’t capture any image. And in case of every intrusion, CISF personnel could notice the intruder only after 15 minutes. Now we have asked BCAS to uninstall the system if DIAL cannot address the issues. The system has become a liability. The system is supposed to instantly raise alarm if someone tries to fiddle with the taut wire. Also, the camera should immediately focus on that spot without loss of time. DIAL should ensure that system doesn’t generate any false alarm.”
With current security measures tightening across airport environments all over the world, the matter must be settled with a viable solution for perimeter security implemented. The perimeter fencing is, in many cases, the first barrier to potential intrusion and critical to maintaining a secure facility.
Australia’s government has ordered a review of airport security following heightened terror alerts across the country to include an ‘active shooter’ response plan.
Physical airport security procedures will be reviewed and tightened, with measures in place to raise awareness amongst passengers. It was made clear by the Department of Transport that they were not requesting heightened implementation of additional security measures, but “review their current security measures to ensure they remain relevant for both generic and specific threat and alert level”.
Amongst the requests made of industry participants are that they ‘take steps to reinvigorate security awareness’; ‘increase vigilance around unattended or abandoned items’; increase security signage and increase face-to-face identification checks of personnel.
There has been an increase in Federal Police patrols as a reaction to the increased terror alert level – the first in Australian history – as they believe the threats to be real and an attack ‘imminent’.
Sydney airport is one of the first to review its physical security procedures and has launched a passenger campaign that is centred around the term ‘if you see something, say something’. Increased security is present in the airport and additional signage has been placed.
It has been announced that multinational security company, Magal Security Systems Ltd, have been awarded a $6.4 million contract to provide physical security measures and an information management system in Nairobi International Airport by 2015.
In addition to security fencing upgrades and multiple surveillance technology, Magal will install an advanced PSIM information management system to integrate and manage the security improvements.
President and CEO of Magal S3, said, “Over the past two years, we have successfully delivered a number of security projects for critical national assets in Kenya, demonstrating how excellence in performance and successful deliveries lead to significant further business. We are proud to be employed by this prestigious national customer and remain committed to supplying the latest technology with the highest standards of execution.”
The announcement follows recent speculation of the release of funds from the Kenyan government to invest in the much-needed improvements to airport security across the country.
It appears that the Kenyan government are preparing plans for funding to be released at the start of their new financial year to provide upgraded security for major airports around the country. The largest portion of the funding, rumoured to be in the region of 6.4 billion Kenya Shillings, will be invested in upgraded perimeter fencing to improve physical security and the installation of additional CCTV equipment.
Although security measures are in need at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), it is yet to be confirmed whether the much-bemoaned multi-security point access system will be upgraded to provide better, single point access for the new Terminal four. According to the Transport Cabinet secretary, Kamau, the new terminal should be open by the end of the summer and will increase capacity at JKIA by several million passengers, which will hopefully give rise to the full refurbishment and awaited modernisation of Terminals 2 and 3, currently working as international departure terminals.
Physical security in airports across the country is the priority and upgrades to perimeter fencing are in dire need.
Two separate incidents of an airport perimeter security breach on Christmas Day have highlighted the importance of effective surveillance – industry-wide.
Each incident happened at different airports – one at Newark International, where a man breached the airport perimeter security fence and remained undetected as he crossed two runways to reach a terminal before being spotted by an airline employee.
The second incident occurred at Phoenix Sky Harbor International later that day. The man scaled a nine-foot high fence and ran onto the tarmac waving his arms at a plane before being captured by airport security.
Although both airports had airport perimeter security surveillance, neither detected signs of the trespassers.
Questions have now been raised, especially as the Transport Security Administration has no mandate in place for the requirement of full-time surveillance of airport perimeter security fences.
This appears not to be an isolated problem. There is an industry-wide call for greater importance to be addressed for airport perimeter security.
As part of the expansion of Inverness Airport, a leading physical airport security company has installed a new access management system to help to streamline the process of managing staff and passengers.
CEM Systems, part of Tyco and ADT Fire & Security has installed their CEM AC2000 AE (Airport Edition) system, being the only access control system designed specifically for airport use.
Inverness boasts the largest airport in the Highlands and Scottish Islands and is a key location, processing more than 610,000 passengers every year.
Physical security systems are critical in airports to maintain safety and security of staff, crew and passengers, while increasing efficiency and productivity throughout the airport. The AC2000AE has a wide range of security features including check-in desk enabling, core access control, air-bridge monitors, passenger reconciliation and vehicle management to name but a few.
Philip Verner, Regional Sales Director for CEM Systems said, “Developed by working in consultation with airports for over 25 years, CEM AC2000 AE is the leading choice for airports around the world.”
It has been announced that John Monto, ARINC’s Director of Radio Technology Solutions will speak at the inaugural TETRA conference about mission critical transmissions of aviation communications, specifically for LAX airport.
Mr Monto will look at the implementation process of the TETRA deployment, following the recent FCC approval for its use in mission critical transmissions.
TETRA could bring potential benefits for ground-based, physical security issues at LAX and at airports across America, particularly in the transportation and utilities sectors.
“ARINC is dedicated to ensuring our customers have clear connectivity to communicate vital information to airline personnel, passenger services, ground handlers, terminal security teams, and all airport ground support staff,” said Monto. “I am excited to discuss how our valued customers at LAX are using TETRA and the benefits it is providing that’s enabling them to get their jobs done in a more timely and efficient manner.”
Long Island MacArthur Airport (LIMA) have upgraded their security surveillance system to an advanced digital system as part of a plan to enhance the airport ready for potential passenger growth and expanded air service. LIMA have leveraged previous investments by choosing a security surveillance system to integrate with their existing technology.
LIMA have selected IPVideo Corporation to provide the upgrades to the public airport that is owned by the town of Islip. LIMA serves almost two million passengers per year, averaging 500 flights every day, both commercial and private charter aircraft, of which it houses 250.
The new system will operate high resolution cameras with facial recognition capability to aid border control to identify persons of interest. The cameras have a timeline feature which will enable higher levels of customer service and allow operators to locate lost items or even cars in the parking facility.
Physical security surveillance system operation is critical across the globe to guarantee secure and safe passage for passengers and staff at border control facilities. The reassurance of today’s technological advances can be felt industry-wide.
A solution that is scalable and flexible is often required and is offered by companies such as ARINC, who have an eighty-year record of excellence in the aviation industry. Their physical security surveillance systems are used throughout the industry and also in nuclear facilities.