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Video after Boston

I returned from ISC West in Las Vegas with the belief that our industry is stronger than ever.

December 9, 2014  By JF Champagne

To quote Don Erickson, CEO of the Security Industry Association (SIA), “ISC West is a good indicator of how vibrant our industry is and ISC West 2014 is the largest show since 2007.” SIA is the primary sponsor of ISC West and a close partner of CANASA.

There were also a record number of people for the annual Mission 500 Security 5K event, a security industry initiative that supports World Vision and benefits children in need. More than 700 people registered and raised in excess of $100,000.

I ran next to Fredrik Nilsson, general manager for Axis Communications — a regular at Security Canada Central and other industry events in Canada, and a great resource if you want to learn more about what is happening in the industry.

We spoke about his participation on a panel discussion at ISC where they talked about privacy and CCTV.


He referenced the bombing during the Boston marathon a year ago to illustrate how the public’s perception is changing.

Fredrik mentioned a Time magazine survey following the Boston events that showed that 80 per cent of Americans are in support of more cameras in public spaces, a sharp increase from a previous poll a decade or so ago. The reasoning being that the public is able to appreciate the positive impact of video surveillance and is more accepting as a result. The same survey also saw a decrease in support for “data surveillance,” such as monitoring of emails and cell phones where the public did not see a positive impact for the population.

We can appreciate the efforts that went into identifying the people behind the bombing and we know many privately-owned and installed CCTV systems were leveraged in this effort. In fact, the first pictures of the suspects were from a private business while they were in a “public space.”

I like to believe that this is great news for the private sector. It would be hard to refute the positive impact the systems we install have on protecting the public and helping law enforcement solve crimes.

I suspect younger generations will embrace new models of privacy and data protection. There will be boundaries placed on government and public agencies to prevent the concentration of information while allowing private enterprises to protect their interests and also serve the greater good.

We may have to improve how we interact with law enforcement to exchange information but it is all good for business. 

JF Champagne is the executive director of CANASA (www.canasa.org).

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