Arkansas Department of Corrections Modernizes Security Camera System – Security Today

Arkansas Department of Corrections modernizes security camera system

i-PRO Co., Ltd. (formerly Panasonic Security), a provider of professional security solutions for surveillance and public safety, announced that the Arkansas Department of Corrections (DOC) has chosen to modernize its surveillance camera system with i-PRO network cameras and recorders. More than 4,000 cameras help the Arkansas DOC monitor 17,000 inmates and 32 facilities.

Working closely with systems integrator Progressive Technologies, Arkansas DOC has already replaced and modernized approximately 60% of their analog cameras with a mix of high-resolution i-PRO multi-sensor, fisheye, PTZ, bullet, dome and compact dome cameras their NVRs with i-PRO NX and NU recorders.

Arkansas DOC Containment and Surveillance Coordinator Drake Palmer spoke about the impact of switching from analog to high-resolution digital cameras. “It’s like night and day. With 4K we can see if someone hands a prisoner a pen or a shaft. We went from blurry images to full clarity. From a narrow field of view to a wide field of view. There are a hundred different things that these cameras have made easier and safer for inmates and staff.”

Reliability is also a must-have for the DOC in an environment hostile to technology. Cybersecurity is also a major concern, so at one facility they acquired, they replaced existing IP cameras that lacked cybersecurity features. At that location, Palmer brought in the easy-to-install i-PRO NU all-in-one recorder, took out the cheap cameras and recorder, put in i-PRO cameras and the NU recorder and had everything up and running. 10 minutes.

An officer at each DOC branch monitors the on-site video surveillance system. But with as many as 800 cameras on some sites, it’s impossible for one person to view them all. Palmer expects to be able to use i-PRO’s video analytics to help with this in the future.

He is also exploring the use of line crossing analytics to phase out the existing microwave solution currently used to monitor facility boundaries and identify/prevent contraband. License plate recognition is also of interest to Palmer as a way to identify vehicles of interest visiting the facilities.

As the Arkansas DOC continues to modernize its surveillance system in phases, Palmer says, “We will be able to gradually move from reactive to proactive use of our camera system.”