How can universities better protect people without compromising their ability to be inclusive and welcoming? In essence, they need to think differently about bringing together the various technologies and data sources already available.

Balancing Safety and Campus Life

Keeping everyone safe shouldn't disrupt the normal flow of campus life. So, how can universities improve their security without impeding day-to-day life or making things feel unwelcoming? After all, safeguarding staff and student satisfaction is critical to an institution’s reputation. The good news for campus security teams? It’s an entirely achievable approach with technology already on site.

Modern security and surveillance platforms are much more than cameras. They integrate with other security measures like alarms, access control, and fire detection so security teams can monitor everything from one place.

Real-Time Tracking

For instance, security staff can track who's where in real-time using ID badges with RFID tags. If someone without a badge is detected, it can be quickly investigated. In emergencies, it can also help with evacuations.

These systems aren't just for emergencies, though. They are vital for day-to-day safety. For example, someone who needs assistance can use a help point to talk to security. And security can pinpoint their location right away using dynamic mapping capabilities.

Fast Detection and Response

Using a single security and surveillance system makes spotting problems early and managing the situation easier.

Risk factors can be identified and programmed to trigger appropriate responsive on-screen guidance for security staff based on the university’s procedures. These can include:

  • Suspicious items
  • Loitering behaviour
  • Unusual access activity
  • Noise detection (for instance, using software to pinpoint gunfire)

Of course, the right help may not be an internal university resource or team member. External agencies such as the police can also be brought into the loop using secure evidence sharing, integrated communications, and task allocation. These support efficient collaborative working, which is particularly beneficial in time-pressured scenarios.

Proactive Planning for Long-Term Safety

It's not just about reacting to problems. By analysing data like foot traffic and building usage, campuses can forward-plan to make things safer and more efficient.

For instance, they can adjust security patrols, change the location of information points, and improve the flow of people through buildings and campus areas to prevent crowd-related pressure points.

Social meeting points and retail units can even be moved to locations with greater footfall, further improving the campus experience.

A Safer, Smarter Campus

Implementing all this might sound daunting, but it's not as hard as it seems. Many campuses already have the technology; they simply need a security and surveillance solution to connect them. While upgrading systems may require infrastructure, resources, or budget investment, it's worth it for the safer, smarter campus it creates.

By embracing these technologies, universities can lead the way in creating safer, more efficient communities – both on campus and beyond.

Safety for All

A Handbook for Public Space Surveillance

This handbook guides you through the changing landscape of public space surveillance and shares the good practices for your people, processes and technology.

Download eBook