Top Ways to Use IoT Sensors As Part of Building Security Systems

IoT sensors offer a wide range of possibilities not only in Corporate and Commercial Real Estate but also in other industries due to their versatility. Facility managers have long relied on building security systems to gather necessary data, but the data points have been costly to purchase, difficult to install, and intrusive in use. Retrofitting these systems with IoT sensors can provide additional data points, for valuable real-time insights into the status of each entrance, room, or floor.

A building security system has traditionally included access control units, security cameras, alarm systems, gate access systems, fire safety systems, security guards, and physical barriers. A system like this needs to be open for multiple technologies, protocols, data sources, and integration to systems like an IBMS (Integrated Building Management System).

The security sector has shown significant interest in Disruptive Technologies (DT), and our sensors have been integrated with various building security systems as additional data points. The data can be collected by people (manual routine checks), cameras, or sensors, depending on the type of data needed. However, facility managers face the challenge of finding the optimal combination of data points that can provide a status update for each area while being cost-effective and efficient.

How Does It Work? 

DT’s tiny wireless sensors can be easily integrated into any building environment. Measuring only 19 mm by 19 mm, the non-intrusive sensors can be discreetly placed on walls, under desks, on door frames, window sills, and on assets themselves to gather data seamlessly. They can be combined with other security technologies, like video surveillance cameras, to enhance data collection. 

DT Wireless Proximity Sensor
Wireless Proximity Sensor installed in a door frame

A security software platform uses data from various sources and can be programmed to trigger all kinds of notifications (SMS, emails, etc.) or other digital events (camera recordings, etc.) based on the rules set for each sensor or camera. The software can also trigger different responses depending on the time, day, or after a set number of events.

Sensor Use-Cases In Building Security

Access Control

The proximity sensor logs every time a door is closed or opened, and the software can send notifications when a door is opened after office hours. Protecting assets like data centers, archives, or other areas with limited access. The motion detection sensor can also be used for this purpose. 

Preventive Access Control

The proximity sensors can notify if a window or a door has been left open for hours, leading to a higher risk of a break-in.

Protection of Valuable Assets

The proximity sensor can also be used to protect valuable assets like paintings and other artworks. The sensor can trigger an alarm or a notification if the artwork is removed from the wall.

Protection of Critical Assets

The proximity sensor can protect critical infrastructure and equipment. If a fire extinguisher is removed from the wall bracket in case of a fire or act of vandalism, the event will send a notification to the facility manager, security team, or janitor in charge. 

Alert Buttons

“Service buttons” or “Panic buttons” placed in a central area like the reception desk or a social zone, in case immediate support is needed from security guards, cleaning personnel, or a janitor. The tactile touch sensor acts like a button, triggering a service order or a notification. 

Property Damage Protection

Water sensors can immediately detect water leakages at the time they occur, preventing potentially expensive damages to the building and disruptions to business continuity.

Sensors and Cameras

If an artwork is removed from a wall, the sensors can trigger a routine to send a video feed from the security cameras closest to that specific artwork to the security team. The event can also set off an alarm or play a pre-recorded voice message through speakers.

DT Sensors for Building Security Systems

Wireless Proximity Sensor

  • The Wireless Proximity Sensor can detect objects placed in front of the sensor. In addition to a periodic heartbeat every 15 minutes, the sensor transmits an event when an object is placed in front of the sensor, or removed.
  • Long battery life: The unique DT technology allow the sensors to work for up to 15 years in the default configuration.
  • Simple installation: Simply peel the adhesive backing from the sensor and stick it anywhere.

Wireless Motion Sensor

  • The Wireless Motion Sensor uses Quad-element Passive Infrared Sensor (PIR) technology to detect the presence of people in a room by measuring changes in infrared light intensity coming from a warm body moving into the sensor's field of view.
  • Long battery life: The unique DT technology allow the batteries to work for up to 10 years in the default configuration. The sensor uses standard AA batteries that are easy to replace.
  • Simple installation: Simply peel the adhesive backing from the sensor and stick it anywhere.
  • Non-intrusive, small size: 110mm x 42mm 
  • Large detection area: Mounted in the ceiling, the sensor has a 360 degrees detection pattern and a 14-meter detection diameter (at a ceiling height of 3,6m/12 feet).

Wireless Tactile Touch Sensor

  • The Wireless Touch Sensor sends a message to the cloud every time it is touched. It also transmits a heartbeat message every 15 minutes to notify the system that it is within range and operational.
  • Long battery life: The unique DT technology allows the sensors to last for up to 15 years in the default configuration.
  • Two versions: The Wireless Touch Sensors transmit a message to the cloud every time it is pressed. The Wireless Tactile Touch Sensor comes in a mechanical housing that gives audible and tactile feedback to the user when the sensor is pressed.

All sensors have:

  • End-to-end encryption: Triple A+ grade security from the sensors to the cloud verified by a third-party security authority.
  • Designed for scale: Scale from a few sensors to thousands with just one gateway.
  • Flexible integration: Easily integrate into any existing data system or platform via webhooks or REST API.

The software platform is provided by the DT partners and is used to manage the data, set up notification rules, and store data for reports and analytics. These platforms can also integrate with other systems, such as the BMS or CAFM systems.

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