Our content producer, Sthembiso Sithole, chats to the national marketing and communications manager at Fidelity ADT, Charnel Hattingh, about modern technology being the game-changer in the fight against crime.
When was Fidelity ADT established and when did it start using technology for security?
ADT has been in South Africa since 1995. Fidelity Security bought ADT in early 2017 and Fidelity ADT was born. Technology has always been an integral part of ADT as well as Fidelity Security, so the company now draws on expertise from both brands.
What technology tools/devices is the company using when it comes to security?
From CCTV to access control, fire detection and suppression technology to Secure Connect - a solution that connects, via broadband, the key devices in your home on one platform.
How have technology and the tools/devices used by the company affected clients you serve?
Each innovation has greatly improved what can be offered. Being able to remotely monitor their homes via cellphone, for example, means clients can see what’s happening at home without even being there.
What are some of the key technology tools you think all security companies should have?
Remote monitoring and CCTV. A monitoring centre that has the latest state-of-the-art technology so responses can be quick and effective.
Has the company conducted training to its staff on the use of technology and security tools?
Staff are regularly trained on the latest products and encouraged to innovate themselves and present ideas on how we can grow and improve.
What challenges does technology bring in fighting crime?
In South Africa the infrastructure and adoption of modern internet services and IoT has been slow, which hampers innovation. Other challenges have been the costs of new technologies, but they’ve come down.
Tell us about licence plate recognition cameras and CCTV camera systems installed at homes?
More residents’ associations are installing camera networks. These systems link a network of strategically placed licence-plate-recognition cameras to a main control room monitored by trained operators around the clock. This translates into a security blanket that covers a whole neighbourhood.
The advantage of this system is its ability to track vehicles entering and exiting an enclosed area. It can also provide crucial evidence that can be used in the apprehension of criminals.
The cameras are also off the grid, so there are eyes on the street even during a power outage.
It’s an affordable, highly successful option for residents wanting to closely manage the entry and exit points of their suburbs. Our advice is not to rush into a decision - do your homework and make sure the system you choose will offer the kind of protection you need. It’s also important that the chosen system integrates with any upgrades or expansions you do later.
What is the future of security companies and technology?
Technology innovation will continue to be a big driver in private security in South Africa. Companies that have the abilities and means to invest in technology will be the industry leaders.