Independent verification of system performance by CPNI

A number of Detection Technologies products have been independently evaluated by a UK government agency having the name CPNI. The acronym CPNI stands for the Centre for the Protection of the National Infrastructure. Part of the responsibilities of CPNI is to advise high-security sites within the UK which perimeter detection system will provide the best value for money in terms of system performance and cost.

The CPNI test procedure

In the first test period, all systems are monitored over a period of at least eight months to monitor the false alarm rate closely. This period usually includes the winter months when the detection system is exposed to more extreme weather conditions such as strong winds and heavy rain. In fact, the test site where these evaluations are conducted is specifically chosen because it is located in an area which experiences high winds and heavy rainfall much of the time. Systems which exceed the maximum permissible false alarm rate are removed from the test at this point.

At the conclusion of the false alarm monitoring period, the detection system is then tested to ensure that the level of detection meets the requirements specified by CPNI’s scientists and engineers. Detection system testing includes a wide variety of attack scenarios using a variety of tools and equipment which would be readily available to anyone wishing to defeat the detection system in order to gain undetected access to the site.

Catalogue of Security Equipment (CSE)

Once a detection system demonstrates an acceptably low false alarm rate combined with an acceptably high probability of detection the technical details of the system form an entry into a catalogue of security equipment. The circulation of this catalogue is restricted to security officers tasked with ensuring the security of critical infrastructure sites. Security officers responsible for such sites are only permitted to select detection systems which meet the performance criteria demanded by CPN I, or in other words, they can only use systems that have met the criteria for being included in the Catalogue of Security Equipment (CSE).

Detection Technologies test results

From the range of the products manufactured by Detection Technologies, the DuoTek system and the VibraSector system have been tested by CPNI and are included within the catalogue of security systems. Furthermore, both of these products have met the performance criteria required by CPNI when used to protect a variety of different types of fence fabrics including welded mesh, chain link, and armour weave types of fence fabric.

Potential customers of Detection Technologies can be assured that the product they may be considering purchasing has been independently tested by an impartial agency whose goal is to ensure that security managers of sensitive, high-security sites within the UK have access to impartial and accurate information regarding the performance of a perimeter intrusion detection system before spending significant sums of money which without this advice, might be wasted if the performance of the system does not meet customer’s expectations.

Knowledge based on practical experience

Detection Technologies key personnel have all worked in the technically demanding field of electronic perimeter intrusion detection systems for more than 25+ years. A wealth of knowledge of 100+ years of experience in the design and manufacture of perimeter security solutions has been accumulated.

This knowledge can be turned to the customer’s advantage when technical assistance may be required to address issues relating to installations or perimeter detection system design. Very few manufacturers are in a position to offer such expert assistance both in the design phase of a detection system, and in overcoming technical issues related to installation quality.

Integrated alarm verification

Alarm verification is almost a mandatory requirement for larger sites to avoid time wastage by security staff who may be required to investigate the cause of every alarm reported by the detection system. Detection Technologies products are in a class of their own when it comes to verification of alarms without incurring the expense of a CCTV system to cover every metre of the protected perimeter.

Even on the most well-managed sites, many alarms reported by a perimeter detection system may be entirely benign, or in other words, be caused by some event not related to actual intruder-related activity. Such events may be induced by environmental conditions such as a tree branch falling on a fence after a strong gust of wind. Other events may be related to animal activity or other unintentional contact with the perimeter fence. If security staff are required to investigate to large a number of such alarms, they will quickly lose confidence in the accuracy of the system and become complacent and consequently less diligent in identifying the exact reason for the alarm.

Detection technologies products offer a quick and effective method of verifying the cause of every alarm without requiring the security staff to leave their desks. Associated with every alarm reported by all Detection Technologies products is an audio signature which is an accurate electronic representation of the mechanical disturbance which caused the detection system to signal an alarm condition. Imagine for a moment, standing next to an intruder while that intruder is using bolt-cutters to cut through the fabric of the perimeter fence. The audio signature stored by the detection system when an alarm condition is signalled will be exactly the same as you would hear when standing next to the intruder using that tool.

Because the audio signature associated with every alarm activation is stored within the detection system, it can be replayed over a simple loudspeaker by security staff without requiring them to go to the site perimeter to investigate the alarm. This technique of audio verification of alarms employs the huge database of audio memories present in the human brain and is therefore a very accurate and intuitive method of identifying the type of activity that may have caused that audio signature to be stored. Very few other detection systems have this powerful capability integrated as standard and in such cases the only viable alternative is to use a CCTV system to provide video verification of alarms. This option, however, is extremely costly.