REDMOND, Wash. — March 14, 2012 — To help ensure the safety and security of its employees and contractors across more than 100 countries and nearly 700 facilities, Microsoft Corp. today announced it has deployed IDV Solutions’ new Visual Command Center software in its three Global Security Operations Centers. These centers are responsible for integrating and coordinating Microsoft’s security operations around the globe. The announcement was made at the Worldwide Public Safety Symposium in Redmond, Wash., an annual event designed to increase awareness of how technology can support the public safety sector and provide practical solutions that can be used to address daily challenges.
Microsoft Global Security, which oversees the operation centers located in Redmond; Reading, England; and Hyderabad, India, monitors more than 27,000 pieces of hardware — including access card readers, cameras, fire panels, environmental alarms, biometric security systems and duress alarms — and manages more than 185,000 active cardholders and more than 30 million system events each month.
“Microsoft Global Security’s charter is to establish and maintain a safe and secure working environment at all times, and we’re committed to supporting a cutting-edge technology environment to enable this,” said Michael Foynes, senior director, Global Security Operations, Microsoft. “IDV Solutions’ Visual Command Center is essential to maintaining our security mission — from routine day-to-day local operations to crisis management at our facilities worldwide, making a real impact on our ability to help keep our people safe.”
As part of Microsoft’s command and control operations platform, IDV Solutions’ Visual Command Center integrates the gigabytes of data that pour in each second from multiple internal security systems and external data feeds around the world, uniting them in a dynamic, common operating picture that helps Microsoft Global Security make more informed decisions, coordinate responses and even save lives.
“With Visual Command Center, organizations such as Microsoft are able to better integrate data from multiple security systems with information from around the world,” said Mark Morrison, chief executive officer and co-founder of IDV Solutions. “It helps them to identify and assess risk and, ultimately, to protect people and assets.”
Visual Command Center is an evolution of Visual Fusion, IDV Solutions’ tool for data visualization. Like Visual Fusion, Visual Command Center unites data from multiple sources in the context of time and geography. Visual Command Center adds features that specifically address security professionals’ needs, such as real-time alerting, mobile applications and the ability to display multifloor building plans directly over building locations on a map. Also included in Visual Command Center is a bundle of subscription and open source data feeds selected for their relevance to security operations, including terrorism incidents, crime reports and global disaster alerts.
Microsoft Global Security previously deployed Visual Fusion to help protect employees in the wake of civil unrest and political instability in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya. The technology was used to continually check the proximity of Microsoft office locations to the center of demonstrations; these maps then were disseminated to Microsoft Incident Management Teams with situation updates. Similarly, in response to the massive March 2011 Japanese earthquake, Microsoft Global Security used Visual Fusion to check the proximity of offices to the earthquake and tsunami disaster zones.
“From everyday events like a burst water main to the large-scale impact of hurricanes, earthquakes and tsunamis, situational awareness solutions such as Visual Command Center provide an intuitive geospatial display of information, which allows our Incident Management Teams to make more informed and precise decisions and better prioritize efforts and resources, an absolute must in immediate response actions,” said Mike Howard, chief security officer, Microsoft Global Security.
The Worldwide Public Safety Symposium held March 13–15 in Redmond is attended by government officials, policymakers and information communication technology strategists from around the world, working together to deliver safer communities and national security. The conversation is at #2012PSS.
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