Sublethal Remote Camera Guns

 

A company out of South Africa has introduced a unique product for those looking for an alternative to human security presence. The Sublethal Remote Gun is a non-lethal weapon mounted and connected to a camera that allows the user to engage an intruder without being on-site. These remote weapons are designed to fight back against intruders while keeping the user safe. Here we will take a look at the specifics of this security alternative.

 

The primary weapon is a paintball gun using nylon rounds. It is designed to be similar to the rubber bullets used in riot control – causing extreme pain without being life threatening. It is not recommended to use regular paintballs, but frangible solid casing pepper balls can be used. The magazine holds up to 155 rounds just under the size of a US quarter. The gun is difficult to disable and in most cases is mounted on a pole of nearly 20 feet, able to fire down the pole to protect itself from tampering. In the event that real ammunition might be used against the gun to disable it, upgrades to the casing are offered to make it resistant to small arms fire.

The gun is very easy to use and requires only a few minutes of training. Because of this, every controller has a key to lock it down and prevent young children from accessing it. During power outages, the sublethal gun has a battery that can keep it running for 3 days, depending on level of use. Under tests the gun often lasts up to 7 days on a deep battery cycle. A solar panel and solar charge controller can also be fitted to ensure the gun remains functional during an outage.

 

The system is built to be modular but it has not been tested with a lethal firearm and the company does not endorse or assist with such a modification. Although the weapon is designed and sold in South Africa primarily for defense of farms, many other possible installations are suggested by the manufacturer. These include what may be a somewhat optimistic list to include everything from households and businesses to server rooms and casinos.

As a deterrent, the gun has some advantages over a human with a lethal weapon. By engaging from a distance, the risk of physical harm to the user is removed and gives the defender a disproportionate advantage. The intruder stands little chance of winning a fight against a machine and being repeatedly struck by riot suppression rounds is highly demoralizing. Furthermore, the legal risk of using a firearm on a criminal is eliminated. In South Africa, if a criminal intruder is killed the police force must open a docket for murder against the homeowner. This will result in confiscation of their firearms for ballistics tests and a requirement for them to appear in court. Especially if the criminal was unarmed, the property owner may unfairly face significant jail time simply for defending themselves and their land. The sublethal gun requires no license and has a low chance of permanent injury.

 

In the long term a remote gun like this is orders of magnitude less expensive than a human security guard. The guns can be used as a force multiplier to reduce these costs and engage several armed intruders. Especially in the case of farms and homeowners, this may be the only type of weapons system appropriate and affordable. Most do not have the resources to employ 24 hour security.

The up front cost is $1499 per system to include the weapon, controller, rounds, and hardware to mount. Paired with alarm activation on a cell phone or other mobile device, the gun can be made more useful, as unfortunately it is not automatic and requires the user to operate it. The gun works on the cellphone network and does not require WiFi. Through GSM, 4 alarm zone inputs can send an SMS message to the user when triggered. These relays can be used to activate sirens, flood lights, pepper spray dispensers, gates, smoke dispensers and more.

 

While the manufacturer designed the gun as an answer to the problem of crimes against farms in South Africa, it does seem that delivery outside of the country can be arranged. This would of course mean self-installation would be required. The utility of the gun is certainly up for debate, but as an addition to existing security measures and for its relatively low price there is an argument to be made for its use. As an answer to the desire for a remote weapon attached to a camera, the gun might be seen by many as a half measure. Perhaps in the future such a system could be made to detect human presence in off-limits zones and fire automatically.

 

Year 2020: Security Threats in the Coming Year


Moving into a new year, we can expect the trends in information security from the last several years to continue to evolve and affect the methods criminals will use in exploits and the industry’s defenses against them. A few of these, such as the continued migration to the cloud, mobile technologies, and the use of machine learning affect the methods employed by both sides. With a shortage of skilled professionals in cybersecurity and the rapid advance of software development, we can expect serious competition for our data and information security. Here we will take a look at what experts in the field are saying lies ahead in the coming years.

Ransomware

A major method of attack in 2019 was ransomware. While previously online “gangs” would target institutions such as banks in massive multi-million dollar attacks using banking trojans, moving forward it is expected that the focus will shift to smaller attacks on small to medium sized businesses. This is due to it being easier to anonymize smaller attacks, with the profits easier to launder because of less interaction and sharing with physical street gangs in the laundering process.

Phishing 

Phishing will remain an important method in initiating attack, with mobile increasingly becoming the primary vector for phishing attacks aimed at stealing credentials. While conventional secure email gateways are adequate in blocking phishing emails and dangerous URLs, these methods often neglect to defend  mobile attack vectors from account takeover attacks. Personal email, social network accounts, and SMS/MMS messaging can be vulnerable to these attacks.

The Cloud

With business infrastructure increasingly making the move to the cloud, the focus of attackers will follow. This comes with the expected consequence of making attacks more difficult, requiring more sophistication and frequency of attacks which will increasingly rely on luck rather than careful planning and execution. A benefit to corporations using cloud infrastructure is redundancy for data storage and a greater assurance of server up-time. This migration to the cloud should improve security for most, although what attackers will be able to do with machine learning attacks on the cloud remains to be seen.


Having been talked about for several years now, 5G mobile technology will begin to be adopted across major metro areas in late 2020. This increased bandwidth and speed will give rise to a number of new IoT devices and create an uptick in edge computing. With IPv6 adding so many new devices, each one posing a potential risk as an attack vector, companies will need to reevaluate and rethink their threat models. The traditional infosec issues of authentication, confidentiality, authorization, availability and data security will be magnified with the huge build-out of 5G and must be accounted for with an updated risk paradigm.


As for authentication methods, we can expect a move from two-factor (2FA) to multi-factor (MFA), to include biometrics. Implementation of one-time authorization codes (OTAC) will help to provide 2FA circumvention of phishing attacks. Organization are expected to adopt these practices to address credential theft and maintain regulatory compliance, especially those holding highly sensitive data. They will have to contend with more specific phishing attacks leveraging machine learning to optimize attack campaigns. Once done by hand, phishing lures of the 2020s will be tested by AI algorithms in order to improve conversion rates. Phishing domains will even be generated and registered by algorithms independent of human intervention.

Social Engineering and OS Issues

As has always been the case, often the weakest link in the security chain is the human element. We can expect to see an increase of insider attacks in 2020. These occur when an attacker either offers to money or extorts sensitive information from someone working for an organization. This can be achieved through compromising social media accounts and using social engineering methods. This is a low-tech way of breaking security, but often one of the most effective. Some attackers may offer considerable sums of money or cryptocurrency to insiders depending on the target’s position in the company.


One final thing to consider is that Microsoft will be ending support for Windows 7 in the middle of this January. Any businesses and other end-users still using the OS will face the issue of no longer receiving patches and updates, even in the event that a security vulnerability is found. It is expected that at least one significant attack will leverage a Windows 7 end of life vulnerability in the same way that attackers did when Windows XP support came to an end.


These themes will shape the security landscape of the next few years. The interplay between the security professionals and infrastructure meant to protect organizations and those who seek to steal their data will continue to evolve, shaped by emerging technologies. Those organizations best able to defend themselves will be those who anticipate and prepare to resist new and enhanced methods of attack.

STST Inc. is South Texas’ source for professionally designed and integrated security and access control systems.

To set up an appointment to get a quote on your project,

Call us at 210-446-6306

or send an email through our website:

www.securitytechnologyofsouthtexas.com/contact-us/

SALTO XS4 GEO Cylinder and The JustIN  Mobile Interface

SALTO’s range of compact electronic cylinder locks are designed for doors where fitting a full-sized conventional handle and lock is not possible or needed. These cylinder locks, like the other SALTO products, are totally free of wires and are networked through the SALTO Virtual Network and SALTO Wireless network.

 

Several models are available including half cylinder, cylinder with thumb turn, double cylinder, padlock, and with a wide variety of profiles, e.g., Euro profile, UK oval, Swiss Round, Australian oval, Scandinavian profiles, ANSI profiles.

 

These locks can be integrated into existing Brivo infrastructure, among other manufacturers. It is also common for SALTO secured facilities to include interior facing panic bars to equip emergency exit doors with the ability to trigger a panic alarm as soon as they are pushed open.

 

In order to bring smartphones into the access control environment, SALTO uses their JustIN technology to integrate smartphones with their locks. JustIN Mobile BLE permits doors to be opened via smartphone, turning the phone into an update terminal for credentials.

 

This is accomplished through Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), a standard for communicating between a smartphone and electronic locks. The mobile key is provided Over the Air (OTA) from proprietary management software to an installed JustIN Mobile app on a registered and verified smartphone. After this, the user will receive a message that a new key has been provided and information on which doors he now has the access rights to.

 

After this, the user only needs to present the smartphone to the lock in order to gain access. All data including the mobile key are encrypted and secured against cloning.

 

Because users can get these mobile keys at any time and any place, access control solutions are given greater flexibility when issuing and receiving rights without losing out on security.

 

This system can be used in conjunction with or as a replacement of RFID credentials.

 

Another SALTO protocol for phone based access control integration is JustIN mSVN.

 

JustIN mSVN (mobile SALTO Virtual Network), is technology for updating access rights for any credentials using mobile communications. It makes use of the mSVN app and the NFC interface of smartphones. Through this technology, the SVN can be expanded to spots with no online wall reader. Access rights are updated via direct communication between the phone and the credential instead.

 

Any new access rights or blacklist information are communicated to the user from a server to the mSVN app. The smartphone will then serve as the update point for any new credentials moving forward, taking the place of what an XS4 online reader would usually do. All data is encrypted and secured using Mifare DESFire EV1 technology.

 

Security Technology of South Texas is an authorized integrator for many surveillance and access control manufacturers and has designed systems with this kind of functionality.

 

Please contact us at  admin@gostst.com on our website

 

or via phone at  210-446-4863   24/7

Salto Systems: XS4

From its beginning in 2001, SALTO has had one objective: to create an industry leading access control system that is both simple to use and highly efficient. SALTO systems gives users the ability to control their access needs and secure all points of entry without complex and costly wiring build-outs. Their solutions are simple to install, cost-effective, and designed to be future-proof. SALTO’s SVN platform was the result–the world’s first stand-alone, battery powered electronic locks for access control systems.
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Since then, SALTO has continued to introduce innovations with a major impact on electronic security. With both online and real-time technology, SALTO’s XS4 access control platform augments the security of any building environment through securing nearly any door and allowing the monitoring and control of every user. These systems are networked wirelessly to enable integration with existing systems without running a new backbone through the facility.
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The SALTO Virtual Network (SVN) is the back-end of wireless connection which allows and access control system to grow from just a small number of doors and users to beyond, seamlessly. Locks can read, receive and write through an encrypted data-on-card system through RFID. A smartcard is used for user authentication.
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When the card is presented even to an off-line door, access control is maintained and the door also writes data such as blacklist information and battery status onto the card. This smartcard can then transmit this information to a server through online wall readers which can receive information from these cards at any location on-site.
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Here is a breakdown of the access control chain when the smartcard interacts with the wall reader:
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-A user access event occurs, the card transmits to the system via wall reader.
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-Wall reader now transmits back to the card: This includes deleted card list, updated user access rights, and expiry date renovation.
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-Through the server the following functions can be performed: Users added or deleted remotely, User profiles updated, event audit trail created, device battery report initiated.
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In review, the benefit of a SALTO lock is in their ability to affordably and quickly be integrated into an access control environment with rapid ability to scale. The locks, wall readers, and smartcards can communicate wirelessly and securely, and there is no need to endure the costly and time-consuming process of drilling, running, and testing wires. These locks are used across all access control environments, from schools and hospitals to businesses and government sites.
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Security Technology of South Texas is an authorized integrator for many surveillance and access control manufacturers and has designed systems with this kind of functionality.

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Please contact us at

admin@gostst.com on our website


or via phone at  210-446-4863   24/7