Touring the Javits Center Security Command Center

Javits Center New York City

Inside the command center for security operations of the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, a digital screen on a side wall reminds personnel of the sort of threats they could face at the cavernous convention center. A screen represents a timeline of recent terror attacks; observations and suspects related to local New York City crimes appear in a rotation; other screens rotate through a list of people banned specifically from the Javits Center.

But Kenneth Dixon, Vice President of Security and Safety Solutions for the Javits Center, and his team are prepared with the latest technologies tied into their command center to unify their efforts to mitigate any of these threats. The combined tools and tactics have resulted in an 86 percent reduction in crime inside the convention center in the past two years, according to figures from the New York Police Department—a record since the opening of the convention center in 1986.

That’s quite a feat for a convention center that hosts 175 major events a year, including ISC East. During ISC East recently, Dixon led a tour of command center technologies that highlighted significant contributions from members of the Security Industry Association.

From the screens inside the command center, operators can see inside and outside of the Javits Center using PTZ cameras manufactured by Axis Communications. The Axis cameras provided a complete view of the showroom floor during ISC East. The deployment of Axis cameras is one of the largest in the United States with 800-900 total cameras and with about 100 4K cameras among those.

The Javits Center maintains 1 petabyte of storage to store its video surveillance files. At the time of the tour, the center retained video for up to 30 days, but an upgrade in storage space soon will enable them to extend that retention policy to 45 days.

The cameras tie into alarm systems through Genetec Security Center, which is a unified platform from the Canadian company. Genetec Security Center provides a single interface to pool video surveillance, access control and other security measures with communications and analytics, bolstering situational awareness and unified command through a cloud-based solution.

Genetec Security Center manages access control and analytics as well. For an access control system, the Javits Center relies upon Software House from Tyco Security Products and their C-Cure Access Control and Security Management Solution, which was designed for access control and event monitoring. In addition, the Javits Center turns to BriefCam for video analytics capabilities.

On another wall, an external surveillance system provided by BAE Systems incorporates Genetec Clearance, a digital evidence management system that supports investigations by allowing secure collection, management and sharing of evidence from different sources. Through Genetec Clearance, for example, the Javits Center can rapidly assemble case files and transfer them to the NYPD. Genetec Clearance runs independently of other products, including Genetec’s own if necessary, and empowers sharing with third-parties in a variety of installations.

“It’s another way to share video with outside parties that you don’t necessarily want to invite into your network,” commented Elisa Mula, Genetec Regional Sales Manager.

Internally, Javits security personnel have the convenience of a mobile application that provides some additional capabilities, such as the ability to see where all security guards are located in real-time.

The implementation of these security technologies have resulted in not only a safer environment at the Javits Center, but a bit boost in the convention center’s reputation as well. For that, Dixon credits his technology partners as well as the team running the sophisticated security operations of the Javits Center.