The Value of a US-Based Command Center

January 12, 2022

By Nik Gagvani

Time is everything when it comes to responding to a potential security breach.

The longer you take to react, the better the chances that the bad actor will accomplish their task, whether that’s trespassing, theft or something else. So, it’s critical that live video monitoring services are able to react instantaneously when they spot a problem.

Dispatching responders or law enforcement in a timely manner can make all the difference. That’s why live security camera monitoring is a greater deterrent to trespassers than basic video surveillance recording – a real-time, live proactive security presence can immediately move to prevent a harmful act before it occurs.

But even if you have live video surveillance, it can be problematic if the video monitoring center is not located in the U.S. Some law enforcement agencies require dispatches to come from a domestic video monitoring center and require a UL listing. This means that security companies that do monitoring offshore have to transfer any alert calls to a U.S. partner, who then have to further qualify it before police are notified. This wastes precious seconds, giving the wannabe criminals more time to act.

Kastle’s Video Security Operations Center (VSOC) is entirely based in the U.S., providing real-time incident response and quickly dispatching law enforcement when necessary. But the benefits don’t stop there.

kastle video surveillance operations centerThe human element of video monitoring is critical. VSOC operators, using Kastle’s cutting edge video technology, are able to analyze alerts and interpret whether the action constitutes a threat or if it’s nothing to worry about. And cultural understanding is a big part of that. Certain behaviors that are acceptable here in the U.S. can be seen as threatening when viewed by an offshore video monitoring service, which can result in false alarms or, even worse, dispatch law enforcement when workers, contractors or potential customers are on site.

live video surveillance responseVSOC operators are also able to evolve the video monitoring protocols on an ongoing basis, a critical part of maintaining peak security at any facility. That’s because most criminals are, at their core, lazy. They look for the route of least resistance – and if it’s hard to, say, steal a car in one area, they’ll often just move down the street, once they probe the new location’s defenses.

For example, a basic video surveillance camera that’s set up for motion detection will often have a pre-recorded audio message to warn people away from that location at certain times. It’s effective at first, but if the prospective wrong-doer comes to the area several times, they’ll come to realize it’s an automated message – and no one is actually watching them.

With a live, U.S. command center, you can tailor the messages to the situation. In one incident, when an intruder was spotted, the operator warned he was trespassing – and was ignored. Then, the operator described the suspect’s clothing and informed him again he was trespassing. That earned him an obscene gesture. So, the operator tried another tact – he informed the intruder once more that he was trespassing and police had been dispatched, then commanded the suspect to lie on the ground.  These actions resulted in an apprehension.

That’s an unusual situation, of course, but it’s part of the protocol review that’s done regularly at our command center. If there’s an incident, VSOC operators pull up all nearby cameras and examine video footage, looking for a pattern – and trying to prevent future problems or de-escalate a potential issue

Trusting a U.S.-based command center also ensures that a client’s privacy is strictly maintained. Building owners can rest easy knowing that the footage of their property is secure and is not going to be posted online by an unknown third-party operator. At Kastle’s VSOC, video is only observed by trained security experts that have undergone a rigorous background check. And, in the event of a worst-case scenario, the Kastle video monitoring center can set up live incident response in a purpose-built Situation Room, where operators monitor evolving conditions and can collaborate with law enforcement officials in real time, such as during rioting or civil unrest.

Having those professionals monitor your remote video surveillance platform not only maintains security, but also reduces operating costs. Client facilities have access to powerful video analytics and 24/7 expert monitoring, without having to increase staff.

The U.S. command center is just one of the ways Kastle differentiates itself. We take complete ownership of the entire video surveillance process, from installation to monitoring. We’re who you call if there’s a problem – and there’s never any hunting for the right person. (In fact, clients often don’t have to call us, as we often have technicians on the way before the client even notices something’s wrong.)

It’s a consistent experience that takes work off of the property manager’s plate. And it’s an efficient one that can stop potential problems in a timely manner.

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