Smarter Security for a Safer Healthcare Environment

Physical security in healthcare environments need solutions with greater interoperability, real-time data, and analyses that provide actionable insights.

A proactive security posture increasingly requires less reliance on antiquated security system applications for command and control (C&C). Risk management, threat mitigation, and incident response require actionable data and situational intelligence. Traditionally, physical security software platforms are very siloed in nature and have limited features that have not evolved to meet the current state of the threat environment. So, global security professionals are faced with a schism. On one side: traditional security methodology and technology. On the other side: augmenting those traditional solutions with cutting-edge technology to capture raw data and restructure it into a data aggregation framework that promotes interoperability. Or is that taboo? After all, the multi-billion-dollar manufacturers are happy to tell you how to manage a security program with their technology.

Here are five key impact points I think must be improved for security systems to create a smarter, safer healthcare environment:


There is a need for a highly adoptable framework and software suite that allows for operability across access control and video management platforms, regardless of manufacturers. While the native security applications are still important and are performing a requisite task, this platform will operate as a layer above that, pulling pertinent data from endpoint devices, such as high-resolution cameras. That data is then populated into channels as actionable data (all this without the need to pull data from the native, clunky security application managing those endpoint devices). Video management systems would be relegated to a tool that manages the health and maintenance of that system.


Traditional mass communication (masscom)/notification solutions are clunky, outdated, and expensive. The ability to receive real-time data from users in the field, validate that data, and broadcast a situation via channels in real time is invaluable. This directly displaces masscom solutions in the market. Also, the reach of the masscomms is much greater. You can create role-based groups, localized community groups for heightened awareness of events, global user groups, etc. With a few keystrokes, masscomms via communication channels can accomplish what would currently take hours of phone calls and years of tribal knowledge to accomplish.


In my experience, I have never seen a security collaboration tool either internal or external to an organization. Being able to collaborate in real time internally and/or externally with other security peers for incident management and situational awareness is a tremendous value add. With real-time data at their fingertips, security decision makers can react to developing situations by hardening their security posture to mitigate risk, protect life, and protect property.

4Real-Time, Crowd-Sourced Data

See something, say something. But how? Answer: security comm channels via mobile app. If you’re waiting for a formal incident report to be filled out by an employee and emailed to you or uploaded to a security SharePoint site, you have failed those you’re trying to protect. If you can take a picture of a beautiful flower that caught your eye and upload it to Instagram instantly, why can’t you do the same for an unauthorized person in your building? You can via security comm channels. Physical security measures are great, but they can still be overcome with human interaction. So, put the data gathering on the edge. Put it on the user’s mobile phone. Allow users to upload video clips and incident descriptions directly to security decision makers. It doesn’t get any more real time than that, and you’ve created force multipliers. Now the security staff have actionable data to work with.

5Actionable Data/Situational Intelligence

As I have emphasized throughout this, actionable data and situational intelligence are key to mitigating threats in today’s environment. Without them, we are reacting postmortem. The ability to aggregate data via a highly adopted and easy-to-use platform makes data gathering easy. It’s not relying on a costly third-party solution’s half-baked algorithms. It’s relying on the raw data, and it’s giving that data in real time to those who are responsible for safety and security.