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A study in security

April 17, 2024 by Alistair Enser

This week, Retail Times featured a story about our work with a major UK retailer that has employed our body worn video solutions across its stores to keep staff and customers safe. Their decision followed a trial of the devices in which it was found that more than 1 in 2 of staff (58 per cent) said they felt unsafe whilst at work prior to the trial, but after using our cameras nearly three quarters (72%) felt safer, and 91% of staff wanting to carry on using the cameras post-trial.

It’s vital that people feel safe to go about their day-to-day business, and on that basis, we are proud to be a main sponsor at the AUCSO conference in Edinburgh. The conference brings together members of the Association of University Chief Security Officers, the primary association for Security Professionals working in Universities, Colleges and Institutions of Tertiary Education in more than 22 countries around the world.

Our involvement reflects our work with many of the UK’s leading colleges and universities, such as University College, London, and our view that technology has a key role to play in keeping staff and students safe.

Indeed, the security challenges faced by universities are considerable and unique, for no two campuses are the same. Some are large, spread-out campuses outside town centres, while others are weaved into the fabric of city centres.

Increasing student numbers, large numbers of students from overseas unfamiliar with the country and its workings, the increasing impact of mental health and student safeguarding issues all present a challenge to those tasked with keeping students safe. This is especially true given the scale of the task: in 2012 / 2022 there were 2,182,560 students studying at UK higher education providers, supported by 233,930 staff.

University Security Officers have the challenge of keeping students safe in residential accommodation, while at the same time ensuring they are free to access the entire campuses’ buildings without unnecessary hindrance. A university education now represents a significant investment and students and their families opt for universities that will look after them well and understand their duty of care.

To meet these requirements universities need to continually adapt. For example, today, many students may prefer to use mobile credentials for access control, shopping and such, whereas traditional systems probably rely on physical cards. Navigating change, integrating new cloud based systems into existing infrastructure and adapting systems and policies to changing risks and usage require much thought and planning – with implications and considerations broader than just safety and security.

If you are interested in finding out how Reliance High-Tech can support you, please send me a message or contact info@reliancehightech.co.uk