The security challenge for heritage sites and tourist attractions is substantial. For example, Historic England estimates that over 200 crimes are committed against listed buildings in England every day. And it’s estimated that the cost of art and antique theft in the UK is over £300m every year. As such, heritage sites and tourist attractions are prime targets for vandals and thieves. 

These sites must attract visitors, guaranteeing their safety and privacy while protecting priceless artefacts. Here are five ways Synergy can help. 

Integrate sensors to detect and track priceless items

Motion detection sensors can be fitted to display cases or radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags on the objects. 

Integrating these edge devices into Synergy means that any time an object is moved without authorisation, an alert is triggered, and footage from the nearest camera is automatically prioritised.  

Synergy’s open architecture makes integrating tracking systems from different manufacturers easy for operators by presenting information at one point of control. This provides the flexibility needed to house items on loan from institutions that may have specific rules about display conditions, security and tracking devices detailed in the loan agreements. 

Use analytics to manage visitor flow and establish proximity warnings

Awkward layouts of buildings, sprawling tour groups, and the draw of popular collections can lead to bottlenecks, limited visibility, and frustrated visitors. To ensure a positive visitor experience, it’s essential to keep a steady flow of visitors moving through the site safely.

Using integrated analytics and headcount systems to review recorded footage, Synergy can identify ‘hotspots’ where visitors tend to dwell, such as tour guide muster points or near more famous attractions (think the Mona Lisa at the Louvre). Management can use these insights to coordinate on-the-ground security personnel and tour guides, creating more efficient visitor flow. 

Real-time video analytics can be used to monitor the number of individuals in pre-defined virtual zones, triggering alerts when thresholds are reached, breached, or when individuals cross into a prohibited space (too close to an exhibit). 

Analytics can also be implemented where it is difficult to deploy cameras and other traditional security mechanisms, such as listed building restrictions.

Respond quickly and consistently with workflows and automation 

In the event of a suspicious activity or an incident, Synergy’s alerts, rules engine and workflows mean you can be prepared for every scenario. When certain criteria are met, specific actions are automated. For example, if an artefact is moved, Synergy can be configured to lock the doors in that zone. Or suppose a visitor attempts to enter a restricted area. In that case, alarms can be triggered to dispatch on-the-ground security teams.

With an automated system, heritage sites stand in good stead to secure loans of prestigious objects as they can promise a high level of security.  

Protect visitor privacy with blackouts and masking

Heritage sites require constant surveillance. But monitoring the public doesn’t have to mean a breach of privacy. 

To protect visitors’ identity and sensitive data, Synergy allows you to control access to video footage according to staff security clearance. Users with the highest permissions can also set ‘blackouts’, which restrict the visibility of footage for users with lower permissions for a chosen duration; they will see a black screen. 

Privacy masking is another helpful tool that allows portions of the video to be ‘masked’, for example, visitors’ faces included in incident footage but not directly related to it. This helps the operators of heritage sites to comply with GDPR and data privacy regulations without compromising security. 

Use secure data sharing to collaborate against crime

Cultural heritage crime is a global issue. There are over 52,000 stolen works of art in Interpol’s database. Collaboration is the key to combatting it.

Whether items remain in the UK or are transported overseas, remote system access and remote evidence sharing can be essential tools in identifying and investigating perpetrators, bringing them to justice and helping to retrieve stolen objects. 

With Synergy, on-site security teams can authorise secure access to both historical and live video footage, so relevant law enforcement agents, insurers, and any other relevant national or international bodies can view it as needed during an investigation.