New Security Industry Association (SIA) member iOmniscient Corporation – founded in 2001 – is a leader in using artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to create solutions for a host of industries, from oil and gas to smart cities. Its AI techniques analyze data from crowded and complex environments and provide users with real-time responses. Customers in 60 countries have implemented iOmniscient systems across 30 different industries.
SIA spoke with Dr. Rustom A. Kanga, CEO of iOmniscient, about the company, the security industry and working with SIA.
SIA: Tell us the story of your company.
Rustom Kanga: iOmniscient offers AI-based multi-sensor analytics covering video, sound and smell. The company’s focus has been on solving difficult problems in crowded environments for its customers while minimizing infrastructure costs and without infringing on privacy. To achieve this, iOmniscient developed a patented AI methodology that goes beyond deep learning, which has enabled it to design extremely computing light algorithms (hence not requiring any graphics processing units (GPUs)) and where the system can be implemented with virtually no training.
What solutions/services does your business offer in the security industry? And what makes your offerings/company unique?
RK: iOmniscient’s specialty is to provide analytics for very crowded and complex environments. Its primary offerings include:
- Face recognition in a crowd: Faces can be recognized at high accuracy with a mere 22 pixels between the eyes and with somewhat lower accuracy with only 12 pixels – without a GPU. And iOmniscient’s system is GDPR compliant, protecting privacy better than a standard recording system.
- Multilingual license plate recognition that can recognize plates in 130 countries with 98%+ accuracy at speeds of over 250 kilometers per hour.
- Behavior analytics in crowds: For instance, many companies can find an abandoned object when the scene is empty and the object is unobscured. But it takes iOmniscient’s patented technology to detect the object when it is obscured by passersby for half the time.
- Sound analytics – such as gunshot detection – right down to identifying the type of gun that was used.
- Smell analytics.
- An automated response system that enables all these technologies to work together solving complex use cases for different industries.
Gartner recently analyzed the top 99 video analytics companies worldwide and identified iOmniscient as having the most comprehensive suite of capabilities amongst them. With over 50 international patents, the company is focused on providing sophisticated analytics that can perform with minimal false alarms in very difficult environments.
What’s something we might not know about your company – or something new you’re doing in security?
RK: iOmniscient’s primary value proposition is that it has designed its systems to be less expensive to deploy than a simple recording system. This is achieved through designing the system to reduce the amount of storage and network bandwidth required by around 90 percent. Its face recognition in a crowd system can recognize faces at 60 feet across an area that is 30 feet wide on a 2mp camera without a GPU, where others require 5-10 similar cameras to cover the space – and they all require GPUs. And its automated response system can understand an incident and automatically find the nearest appropriate responder and tell him where to go and what to do – reducing response times by about 80 percent. All these technologies significantly reduce the cost of the infrastructure required.
What is your company’s vision, and what are your goals for the security industry?
RK: In our own experience, our U.S. customers have implemented relatively simple systems compared to their counterparts in other countries. Our focus is on educating our partners and customers to the point where they can feel comfortable implementing our more sophisticated systems. The more sophisticated systems generate higher returns and more benefits for the user, ultimately resulting in improved productivity and better security outcomes.
What are the biggest challenges facing your company and/or others in the security industry?
RK: The video analytics industry developed a very poor reputation over the last two decades because there were many companies that quickly built simple systems with the objective of “selling out” in a couple of years. Others tried to survive by suing others for breach of their patents without actually producing any products that worked well in real life situations. This has resulted in many integrators and end users losing time and money and ending up with a very bitter experience.
Sophisticated systems that address real life problems cannot be built in a year or two. Some of our sophisticated systems have taken a decade to perfect and make robust. These technologies work, and our customers in 60 countries are testimony to that.
What the industry needs today is education on what technologies work and on their limitations. They need a better understanding of how others have used the technology successfully in different countries and across different industries and the processes to follow to achieve a successful implementation. SIA can play an important role in providing a forum for such sharing of experiences.
What does SIA offer that is most important to you/your company? And what do you most hope to get out of your membership?
RK: SIA offers us the opportunity meet with other participants in the security industry to share experiences and to learn from each other. It enables us to better understand the major issues faced by our integrators and potential customers so that we can improve the solutions that we offer them.