In the sphere of campus security, one huge source of mostly untapped potential is social media. Social media users generate a huge amount of data that can be used by security personnel in a number of facets of campus security. From preventing incidents before they start to reacting fast to events in progress, the data created by social media users is invaluable to furthering the mission of campus security. Learn more in our blog.
How Social Media is Improving Campus Security
Security professionals refer to social networks such as Facebook and Twitter as “social data conduits.” This is because they provide data that can be used by physical security information management (PSIM) platforms in real time. PSIM platforms take information from a number of separate security applications and present them together as a whole in a single user interface. The more data the PSIM platform has, the better picture it can give of the current security situation.
That’s why the data created by social media has so much potential. Here are a few examples of how it can be used.
Photos shared over social media can be integrated with a PSIM platform and cross referenced with a database of campus video surveillance footage. Software apps can locate the appearance of a person across photos and video footage, and alert security operators to the presence of a dangerous person on campus. All of this can be done by the PSIM without need for operator input.
Information mustering is another important component of campus security. In the event of a campus emergency, the concept of information mustering means that persons can be accounted for with a two-factor verification process that does not require their direct input. “By using social media, officials can process text messages or posts to confirm the location of mobile devices and then compare the student ID credential information stored within the PSIM to confirm the exact location,” according to Campus Safety Magazine.
When a potentially threatening event is in progress on campus, campus security can use social media to deliver live updates to those on campus who seek shelter. Social media can also work in reverse to help security personnel respond to incidents. Persons on campus can use social media to provide live video, photos, and broadcast their locations using their mobile devices, in order to give personnel a more complete picture of the incident in progress.
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