Published on: August 16, 2023
In this exclusive interview with SafetyDetectives, we sit down with Katherine Balabanova, the Chief Revenue Officer, Board Director, and Co-founder of 3dEYE, a pioneer in cloud-based surveillance technology. Balabanova discusses the critical balance between bolstering security measures and addressing vital data privacy concerns. She also delves into artificial intelligence’s role in redefining modern surveillance systems’ effectiveness. With an expert’s view of the industry’s transformative journey and a glimpse into its exciting future, Balabanova offers invaluable insights into the rapidly evolving world of security and surveillance.
Thank you for your time. Can you talk about your background and your current role at 3dEYE?
My journey has encompassed both leadership roles and a profound passion for global trade development and technology. I’ve had the privilege of serving the Canadian business for over 10 years representing the interests of the large enterprises and SMBs in Eurasian markets, I also have experience in telecom and SaaS prior to that. As the Chief Revenue Officer, Board Director and co-founder at 3dEYE, I bring together my experience in strategic planning, marketing communications, and fostering global growth. My role involves steering the company’s revenue generation strategies, partnerships, and ensuring our customers’ needs are at the forefront of our innovations.
What are the flagship features of 3dEYE?
At 3dEYE, we pride ourselves that the platform is turn-key for resell, with direct-to-cloud connection ability for any camera, NVR or IoT. We are enabling our partners to fully brand the platform as their own or use as is; as well as use our API and SDK to create vertical solutions for monitoring, workflow automation based on analytical events and rules, community watch apps and more. We empower our ecosystem to leverage the benefits of advanced video analytics and AI, enhancing security and operational efficiency.
To explain Pure Cloud architecture suffice it to say that video management, processing, and analytics are done in the public cloud with a direct camera-, NVR- (or other IoT device-) to – cloud connection without additional on-premise hardware such as bridges or servers. Edge backup is usually done by utilizing a camera SD card or NVR to synchronize the data with the cloud. There is no software required on the client-side; management and monitoring are done through a web browser, with mobile apps targeting primarily the end-users. The Pure cloud minimizes customer exposure to maintenance, allows easy adoption with existing or new installations, and provides the best total cost of ownership (TCO) scenario in comparison to other types of VSaaS architecture.
Could you explain how cloud-based surveillance systems enhance security measures while addressing concerns about data privacy and potential vulnerabilities?
We’ve been convinced for over 10 years that the cloud (when the data stored in a professional public cloud) is the shortest way to a safer future of video surveillance industry. There are several reasons for that :
- Data Encryption and Security: Reputable cloud providers employ strong encryption protocols to safeguard data both during transmission and storage. This level of security reduces the risk of unauthorized access to sensitive information. At the core of our platform is 3dEYE PUSH module technology. It initiates an outbound 443 TCP connection to a cloud on startup. Unlike P2P servers, PUSH module is ISP and Firewall friendly. The module creates a secure, encrypted tunnel between the camera and the cloud over TLS with AES 256 encryption. Both metadata and video stream are fully protected from the moment a camera captures video to the moment you access it through 3dEYE video/admin portal. 3dEYE PUSH module is developed with heavily optimized CPU and memory requirements being met to allow a camera run all available edge analytics and avoid overheating. No public IP or ports need to be exposed to access the edge device. No changes to edge device firmware are performed to avoid introducing potential security vulnerabilities. 3dEYE PUSH module is installed as an add-on on top of the firmware to connect the cameras to 3dEYE Pure Cloud Platform. The module includes an option to fully lock-in a camera. In such a case the camera would be available only through the cloud and no local access would be possible.
- Redundancy and Disaster Recovery: Cloud systems typically have redundancy measures and built-in disaster recovery mechanisms. This ensures that even if one server fails, data remains accessible and secure, minimizing downtime and data loss.
- Regular Updates and Patches: Cloud providers consistently update and patch their systems to address vulnerabilities and security flaws. This proactive approach helps in keeping the surveillance system protected from potential threats.
- Access Control and User Management: Cloud-based surveillance allows granular control over user access. Organizations can define roles and permissions for different users, ensuring that only authorized personnel have access to specific video feeds or system settings.
- Compliance with Data Privacy Regulations: Many cloud providers adhere to international data protection regulations like GDPR. Storing data in compliant data centers ensures that data privacy requirements are met, addressing concerns about data misuse.
- Mitigating Physical Threats: Traditional on-premises systems are vulnerable to physical tampering or theft. Cloud-based systems eliminate this risk as the data is stored off-site in secure data centers.
How do you ensure that sensitive surveillance data is well-protected against unauthorized access and potential breaches?
Cybersecurity is a critical concern for any security video solution and it is the first -class citizen in our work.
Security is implemented throughout the system in our case. All accessible attack surfaces such as web and mobile end-user UI, admin panel, APIs, on-premise hardware and hardware UI. Cameras are in general the lowest hanging fruit for remote attack on a corporate network. In case of the majority of our competitors camera handles storage, analytics, live view and is the focal reliability danger point.
By contrast, 3dEYE has created a PUSH technology connector to enable cameras or NVR to connect directly to the cloud without exposing devices to the internet. Our Pure Cloud Video and AI Analytics platform was designed with best-in-class AWS cybersecurity measures to ensure robust security throughout. Our multi-tenant platform was also built with serverless architecture, independent services, and a separation of concerns to prevent unauthorized access and localize attack surfaces.
We also ensure that top-level integrators do not have visibility into customer accounts under them, which further improves security. Overall 3dEYE’s platform is designed with a strong focus on cybersecurity, providing customers with peace of mind and ensuring that their data is protected from potential cyber threats.
Could you discuss the role of artificial intelligence and analytics in improving the effectiveness of surveillance systems?
Organizations everywhere are turning to business video analytics solutions to make their organizations more productive and secure, while becoming empowered to make data-driven decisions. Video analytics for business is founded on Big Data, which is derived from a combination of structured and unstructured datasets from several real-time or historic sources. Video surveillance footage is considered a major source of Big Data; as each camera gathers a plethora of information, in a network effect, it can be mined for business and security intelligence.
3dEYE’s advanced analytics and ability to adjust to customer camera usage result in significantly fewer false alarm events, thus reducing the total cost of ownership (TCO) for both monitoring and alarm stations. Each additional false alarm event requires additional time and resources from operators, resulting in unnecessary costs. Our customers reduce the frequency of these false alarms by more than 50%, resulting in a more efficient and cost-effective monitoring process.
Important to note that with 3dEYE’s Cloud Video and AI Analytics platform, all analytical processing is performed in the cloud, which provides significant advantages over on-premise solutions. Because the platform can access data from the entire cloud ecosystem, it has access to much larger data sets and models. Our models are continually updated with freshly trained data on a bi-weekly basis to ensure that we maintain the highest level of accuracy and relevancy. As a result of this rigorous process, our customers have the benefit of accessing the latest analytics from their cloud-based accounts immediately as a new module is released.
In contrast, on-premise solutions are limited by the processing power and resources available to the cameras themselves. This means that they are not able to support large, complex analytical models or multiple simultaneous analytics running due to hardware limitation of single camera.
Furthermore, 3dEYE’s platform is designed to be highly customizable and extensible, allowing customers to integrate third-party analytics tools into the cloud-based solution. This provides even greater flexibility and customization options for customers who may have specific analytical needs that are not met by the platform’s built-in capabilities.
Overall, 3dEYE’s platform is designed to take full advantage of these capabilities, providing powerful and highly customizable analytical tools that can improve the accuracy and precision of surveillance alerts. We also include the camera-side analytics in our UI, affording the users to experience the best of the 2 worlds.
You can currently layer the following server-side AI analytics modules on any IP camera: object detection, classification (person, car animal, etc.) and tracking, people counting, heat maps, area and color search, ALPR, fire and smoke detection, hard hats detection. Other PPE like safety vests are to be released next quarter as well as leakage detection valuable for construction sites for example.
How have advancements in surveillance technology transformed security practices, and what emerging trends do you find particularly exciting?
Advancements in surveillance technology have ushered in a new era of security practices, marked by unprecedented capabilities and enhanced effectiveness. Here’s how:
- Real-Time Awareness: Modern surveillance technology offers real-time insights into security situations. With high-definition cameras and AI analytics, organizations can instantly detect and respond to potential threats, preventing incidents before they escalate.
- Predictive Analytics: The integration of AI and machine learning has empowered surveillance systems to analyze historical data and predict future security risks. This proactive approach allows businesses to anticipate and address vulnerabilities, leading to safer environments.
- Centralized Management: Surveillance technology has transitioned from disparate systems to centralized platforms. This shift enables organizations to monitor and manage multiple locations remotely, streamlining operations and ensuring consistent security protocols.
- Automation and Efficiency: Automation is a game-changer in security practices. Routine tasks such as video analysis, anomaly detection, and access control can now be automated, freeing up security personnel to focus on critical decision-making.
- Intelligent Alerts: Advanced analytics enable systems to differentiate between true threats and false alarms, reducing alert fatigue. This intelligence ensures that security teams respond swiftly to genuine incidents.
- Data-Driven Insights: Surveillance data is no longer confined to security departments. Businesses are leveraging insights from video feeds to optimize operations, improve customer experiences, and even inform marketing strategies.
Looking ahead, these emerging trends captivate our attention:
- AI Automation and IoT Integration: The use of AI allows for more automation in the security words and the systems become smarter, i.e. some monitoring station operator functions are automated now for more precision and volume of channels to monitor. The integration of Internet of Things (IoT) devices with surveillance systems expands the scope of monitoring. From environmental sensors to wearable devices, IoT enriches situational awareness. A concrete example is the popularity of IP speakers at remote site that connect to 3dEYE platform to create security automation workflows: e.g. “person detected in a perimeter of a remote oil rig during night hours – activate pre-recorded message on an IP speaker and turn on the flood lights.”
- Cybersecurity Focus: As surveillance systems become more connected, cybersecurity becomes paramount. Robust measures are essential to safeguard sensitive data from potential cyber threats.
At 3dEYE, we’re excited about our role in driving these trends forward. Our platform harnesses the power of AI, cloud technology, and centralized management to redefine security practices. We’re committed to shaping the future of surveillance, making environments safer, smarter, and more efficient. As Peter Drucker put it: “The best way to predict your future is to create it.”