The surge in higher-resolution cameras and longer data retention periods presents new challenges for organisations. All-cloud solutions offer tempting promises but often entail substantial disruption and expenses. An emerging solution is the hybrid approach, exemplified by Surveillance Bridge, a data management solution developed by Tiger Surveillance for organisations that want to improve their surveillance capabilities. Bernard Lamborelle, vice president of technology at Tiger Surveillance, explains how the hybrid approach is redefining video data management.
What is fuelling the surge in storage volumes for video and what challenges are businesses facing as a result?
The proliferation of detailed video content, the extraction of valuable data with artificial intelligence, and evolving legislations are driving organisations to amass larger volumes of camera recordings. However, this presents multifaceted challenges. Legal requirements relating to video preservation including for lawsuits and accident evidence, emerge as a paramount concern. This underscores the necessity for scalable storage infrastructures with robust disaster recovery strategies.
How can firms cope with rising volumes of video recordings?
Organisations often struggle with meeting their retention goals due to ever-changing requirements. The ongoing addition of cameras necessitates unending provisioning for expansion. Unfortunately, the allocation of resources for storage, such as data centre space, electricity, air conditioning, and ongoing maintenance becomes a notable concern. In light of these complexities, businesses are confronted with the decision of expanding on-premises storage, embracing video surveillance as a solution (VSaaS), or adopting a flexible hybrid model.
What should be considered before adopting a VSaaS solution?
The decision to adopt VSaaS is a pivotal one for those grappling with the increase in camera adoption and data retention demands. While all-in-the-cloud solutions may seem tempting, they may entail substantial risks, disruptions and expenses. These solutions typically necessitate investments in new cameras, new software and staff training, alongside the challenges of internet connectivity. Adopting such solutions could mean committing significant resources only to encounter unforeseen hurdles.
How does a hybrid approach mitigate these risks?
We have championed a hybrid approach through our innovative Surveillance Bridge product. The core concept is elegant and robust: enabling existing local recording servers to seamlessly integrate and store data in the cloud. This approach reaps significant advantages, including preserving the current infrastructure, compatibility with existing video management systems (VMS), no staff retraining and uninterrupted functionality during internet outages. The ingenious aspect lies in the technical prowess of Surveillance Bridge, a file system filter driver operating at the kernel level. It integrates into the existing local file system, allowing recording servers to persistently write to local disks while creating a unified namespace with Microsoft Azure cloud storage without any system reboot being required.
What sets Surveillance Bridge apart from other solutions?
What distinguishes our product from an off-the-shelf gateway is its deep understanding of over two dozen of the most popular VMS. Each of them has been meticulously characterised, leading to the creation of tailor-made profiles that ensure flawless operations under all scenarios. In some instances, Surveillance Bridge will even synthesise camera data to avert VMS crashes due to content accessibility issues, meaning it helps overcome two of the major cloud infrastructure challenges: disaster recovery and storage extension.
The software developed by our company offers an additional distinct capability where organisations have the flexibility to select their preferred cloud provider, along with the desired storage tier, including all Azure’s services and tiers. Firms get to also decide the ratio of on-premises to cloud content, minimising egress and retrieval fees. Uniquely, Surveillance Bridge can utilise an Azure Archive tier for cost-effective long-term storage to address growing retention mandates. In this way, Surveillance Bridge enables in-place archiving and maintains seamless access to cloud data from all surveillance applications.
This article was originally published in the Autumn 2023 issue of Technology Record. To get future issues delivered directly to your inbox, sign up for a free subscription