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What Are Intelligent Building Management Systems?

What are intelligent building management systems?

The Security Industry Association recently partnered with the ASIS Foundation and the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International to release groundbreaking, first-of-its-kind guidance for practitioners in the security and building management fields. Intelligent Building Management Systems (IBMS): Guidance for Protecting Organizations provides a framework to help decision makers assign a risk-based criticality or impact to their building and asks relevant security questions to develop appropriate mitigation strategies. It also serves to establish a common language between the many intelligent building stakeholders.

One key term that must be understood to effectively leverage the guidance is IBMS. Here are insights from the guidance on what exactly IBMS means.

IBMS are automated building systems that converge and integrate the many building technologies and information flow processes to a central decision point. IBMS are also known by many other terms, including building automation system, facilities management system, energy management system, intelligent building and smart building; however, the core principles of IBMS remain the same regardless of name.

The scale of IBMS varies from an automated home heating system to a high-rise intelligent building that centrally automates and controls all functions, including HVAC, lighting, elevators and life safety systems, along with maintenance, administrative and business functions. Today, security is also becoming embedded within the function and business of IBMS.

With the growth of the Internet of Things (IoT), IBMS will continue to expand into more diverse and complex areas of everyday life. Connectivity through the IoT means, in simple terms, that anything can be linked and incorporated.

IBMS are growing at a rate of approximately 15 to 34 percent each year due to the demand for energy efficiency, reduced maintenance and greater control and operability. By 2022, the IBMS industry will be worth an estimated $104 billion; such growth highlights the current and expected impact that IBMS will have in most future built environments.

These parameters and the rest of the guidance are based on original research, Building Automation & Control Systems: An Investigation into Vulnerabilities, Current Practice and Security Management Best Practice, by David J. Brooks, Michael Coole and Paul Haskell-Dowland of Edith Cowan University in Perth, Australia. The research provides an exhaustive overview of identified intelligent building critical vulnerabilities and mitigation strategies.

Access the guidance, along with an infographic and the full research, here.

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