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The Security Event 2019: Simple steps can make a security system cyber safe

10 April 2019

In most cases, taking simple steps to protect network-based security systems can make that system significantly more secure, says Adam Moorhouse, Engineering Director at Visual Management Systems UK.

Moorhouse was speaking at a presentation – ‘Combating the threat of unsecure security systems’ – during The Security Event 2019, at the NEC Birmingham.

“There are a myriad of different types of network, but they all have similar issues confronting them when it comes to security – and they have similar solutions,” he said.

He explained that attacks by hackers most often happen when those hackers target default passwords for security components, allowing them to disable a zone on an alarm system, for instance, or accessing live video footage.

“Often that isn’t even done manually,” Moorhouse said. “They can use software to do so, and it takes almost no time at all.”

He also pointed to insider threats, where someone inside an organisation may be paid to turn a system element off, for example. “In addition, professional hackers are looking to breach systems to obtain any kind of data they can, in order to sell it,” Moorhouse explained. “Any of these breaches could result in a loss of data for the user, but even if they don’t they still present a loss of confidence from the customer in their security supplier.”

Companies need to apply multiple layers of security, he said, with a company firewall as the first line of defence. “Traditional security managers have a limited understanding of cyber threats,” Moorhouse said. “Criminals now don’t need to be on-site. They don’t even need to be in the same country. They’re just looking for weaknesses via the internet. “

He said the minimum requirements for a strong cyber protected system include:

  • Transparent data encryption
  • SSL certification throughout
  • Protection from end nodes to recorded images
  • Encrypted hard drives for secure image protection

And, Moorhouse said, for a truly protected system, all hardware should be designed with security in mind – specifically designed and pre-configured hardware with those encrypted hard disk drives. The benefits of a strong, protected security network include:

  • Reliability of uninterrupted surveillance of infrastructure
  • Data integrity – the prevention of interference with CCTV footage
  • Privacy and compliance with regulations – prevention of data theft and data diversion.