Special Focus Safe City: Olympics and Expo 2020 Dubai

Major Projects from Japan to the Middle East: City Security Deployments in 2021

07.09.2021 - It was an eventful year and the number 2020 still stand before events that were postponed to 2021: One of them being the Tokyo Olympics, but also Expo 2020 in Dubai, both of which start and have started in 2021. As events around the world are a rare treat these days, GIT SECURITY examines the latest city surveillance projects, focusing on Tokyo, Expo Dubai and some other interesting examples.

Tokyo – a metropolis that has been preparing for a century event. As Tokyo did not have an Olympic Park, the premises for athletes, trainers and staff were placed alongside of the pulsating Tokyo city life. So, it was a challenge to deploy an access control system for ca. 300,000 athletes, officials, volunteers, media and all the people with access rights. ID card theft and misuse were some of the major issues for which the people responsible for security and safety wanted to be prepared.

Therefore, they set up another level of security for the Tokyo 2020 games: A facial recognition ID system to identify faces of officials and athletes granting them access into the Olympic venues. NEC Corporation provided technology for the facial recognition software. As the Japanese Government stated the facial recognition system is able to verify the identity of individuals from a database of 1.6 million images with an extremely high level of accuracy in only 0.3 seconds.

Beginning with fingerprint verification, NEC has been researching biometric identification and developing technologies for nearly 50 years. “Numerous facial feature points are converted into data and matched to give an almost instantaneous identification. Deep learning in artificial intelligence improves accuracy levels leading to extremely low error rates. And because the data is encrypted and cannot be reconstructed, individual facial images can never be leaked,” says Yamagiwa Masahiro, senior manager for Public Safety and Network Business Promotion Office at NEC.
The company’s facial recognition technology is being used in immigration at airports in many countries around the world and has also been used at customs in Terminal 3 of Narita International Airport. If passengers register their information using the app and scan the app at the airport kiosk, then the facial recognition system allows for smooth entry into the country.
Another invention which is rolling around Narita airport is the autonomous patrolling surveillance robot Secom Robot X2. It has a 360-degree omnidirectional camera but is also equipped with a thermal imaging sensor and a metal detector. “It’s a security surveillance system that complements both human and robotic skills”, explains OZA Koichi from the R&D Center at Secom. (1)
Although visitors from other countries were not allowed, it is still one of the biggest events in the world to manage for a whole country and provide safety and security for everybody involved in the most prestigious tournament of the world.

An Event the Size of a City

One other application scenario extravaganza is the security system of Expo 2020 in Dubai which is starting in fall 2021. This event is not just a regular event: Ensuring all visitors feel comfortable, safe and secure is a key priority for any event of this scale. Therefore, Expo 2020 has appointed Siemens as a partner to provide the security management systems. Monir Kabiri is Head of the security portfolio in the Middle East & Asia-Pacific region with Siemens. Together with his team, he is responsible for all Siemens security systems at the Expo 2020 site, which is roughly twice the size of Monaco.  “I’ve executed many projects throughout my career, but none of them compared to Expo 2020,” says Kabiri. “Not only because of its sheer size, but because Siemens will thoroughly interconnect a large number of Expo’s security subsystems. We will be deploying a combination of proven technologies and new innovations, which we will then use on smart city campuses around the world.”
At the heart of Expo’s security infrastructure is Siveillance Control Pro, Siemens’ security management system (SMS). The SMS holds all security-relevant information, including footage from roughly 15.000 surveillance cameras and data from 3.500 access control readers. This also includes information from Expo’s fire-alarm system, various communication systems, data from the vehicle and person location systems, as well as video analysis powered by artificial intelligence (AI) engines.
The SMS can immediately localize an on-site incident, while also preparing an appropriate response. Live footage from the corresponding surveillance cameras, as well as the status of doors and access control systems in the immediate vicinity, are displayed to the control-center operator.
During Expo 2020, data will be exchanged between the security management system and MindSphere, Siemens’ cloud-based, open Internet of Things (IoT) operating system. “Through MindSphere, relevant alarms, events and notifications can be used by other third-party applications, providing added value in assessing situations,” Kabiri explains.

Source: (1)

Reducing a City’s Crime Rate

Another practical example of a modern security system in the city comes from the city of Aulnay-Sous-Bois in France which was often criticized for its high crime rates. In 2014, it ranked highly in a list of crime levels in French cities. So, the city needed to take action to reduce these rates, including building a city security operation center, increasing police activities in the field and focusing political attention on the problems. Part of this action involved upgrading technology, and they turned to system integrators Trafic Transport Sûreté (TTS) who built a scalable video security system. The most recent additions to this system are state-of-the-art Hikvision cameras. The city is now classified as much more peaceful, dropping from the first group of cities in the list, to the last group.


The obvious challenge here was to find the right technology to deliver the best crime-reducing results. But further, the solution needed to work with existing systems and be scalable to be able to anticipate the future needs. The city values innovation and strives for the development of new technologies for image capture and system operations to better cover the public space, protect citizens, and support police forces as they carry out their duties. More specifically, they needed to be able to effectively monitor areas to see the status of incidents taking place. They also wanted to be able to extract reliable video evidence in case of investigation. The city also had to overcome the issue that police encountered hostile behavior when carrying out tasks. They needed to find a way to both enhance trust and protect officers from unfair accusations and even violence. Finally, all this had to be integrated with an existing system that used Milestone Corporate Video Management Software.


One of the main resources the local police uses is its 100 m2 surveillance and operation center, now operating more than 500 cameras. The center’s 11-meter video wall and 7 operating stations use the Milestone Systems VMS and TTS sentinel PSIM, enabling operators to detect offenses and thefts, transmit information to the national police and secure the police forces in the field. To enhance the existing system, TTS installed around 200 Hikvision cameras throughout the city. ANPR cameras allowed operators to clearly read licence plates and accurately classify vehicles. This provided the proof they needed that a vehicle was implicated in a specific criminal situation. It also allowed them to issue a fine when the driver was behaving illegally. Panovu and 4K cameras were installed, providing high quality video coverage of wide areas. PTZ cameras and body cameras for the police forces, as well als HikCentral software was also part of the employment.
Crimes have dropped dramatically in the city. For example, robberies have dropped 30% over the last 6 years, proving the value of an integrated security system.

Usable Video 24/7

A major challenge in urban surveillance is the changing light conditions. During daytime, low-light, pitch-dark and indirect lights like cars, lamppost or other light sources blinking and changing the lighting situation in seconds, it is very challenging for camera technology to deliver high-quality images. Bosch, for example, offers camera-based security technology which is exactly for these changes in lighting. The Autodome IP starlight 5100i IR offers HDR X combined with starlight technology and dual illumination – integrated IR and white light – to capture usable images 24/7. The new HDR X technology has a dynamic range of up to 133 dB ensuring perfect exposure while eliminating motion-related artefacts in scenes with challenging lighting conditions and moving objects during the daytime. In low-light scenes, starlight technology provides clear and relevant images with color filtering down to 0.010 lux. At night, especially in pitch dark scenes, the camera’s white light provides full-color images in complete darkness up to 60m (196 feet). The integrated IR illumination can help identify objects in monochrome up to 320 meters (1,049 feet) thanks to the built-in intelligent IR beam, which ensures optimum illumination of objects regardless of zoom level. The visible white light acts as a deterrent to intrusion, loitering, and other undesirable activities in city surveillance settings.

Residential Solution

Another area of city surveillance lies in securing residential areas. The Dahua Intelligent Residential Solution, for example, incorporates the company’s AI offerings, panoramic camera, fish-eye camera and other advanced equipment to provide targeted security monitoring for different scenes in residential areas. For perimeter areas that are vulnerable to intrusions and threats, the AI perimeter camera that features target classification and precise alarm functions can accurately detect unauthorized people and vehicles entering into restricted areas. Combined with an active deterrence function, it can effectively prevent incidents. For vandalism and illegal activities in public areas, cameras equipped with AI functions support a variety of intelligent detections with real-time alarms that can assist property managers in quickly locating hidden dangers and abnormal incidents such as fire exit blockage, high-altitude throwing, illegal parking, etc.

Touchless and mobile smart living

In order to create better user experience, the solution integrates a myriad of recognition technologies such as facial recognition, ANPR, QR code recognition, fingerprint recognition etc., achieving touchless and efficient access control for both people and vehicles. It allows property owners to freely enter the lobby, parking lot and public facilities through flexible options in case they forgot to bring their key or access card. Additionally, it improves the security of areas where privacy is required. For instance, only owners and authorized visitors are allowed to enter the elevator and go to their desired floors. At the same time, visitors can make an appointment via the mobile app and scan the QR code shared by the owner to enter the lobby and parking lot instead of waiting for on-site registration, greatly increasing traffic efficiency in the area.

A Media City with Access Control

MediaCityUK, an international hub for technology, innovation and creativity located at Salford Quays is home to companies such as the BBC, ITV, Ericsson, dock10 and Kellogg’s. These are complemented by more than 250 smaller media and digital businesses, all using advanced contactless access technology from Salto to provide site-wide security.
Developed as a joint venture between Peel Land and Property Group (Peel L&P) and Legal and General Capital, MediaCityUK was designed around the specific needs of the media and creative industries, and the bespoke community features one of the biggest HD studio complexes in Europe; commercial offices; apartments; retail units, two hotels and a spectacular waterfront public piazza. Peel L&P own and manage12 million sq ft of property and 20,000 acres of land and water, with holdings mainly concentrated in the north west of England, but they also own and manage significant assets throughout the UK with a total portfolio value of £2.6 billion.
Speaking about the mix of internal and external doors to be control, Head of Security, Tony Chebrika and consultant, Richard Sumner of RS Security Consultants, who has been working with Peel L&P since 2015 on managing their access control on this diverse site, says: “We’re using Salto readers to control road blockers, gates and barriers, wall readers to control main entry doors and mostly XS4 handle sets to control internal doors. Other onsite users such as SIS (Sports Information Services) have their own individual Salto solution but also have access to MediaCityUK doors i.e. they carry access permissions on one card for two systems. This is the same for ITV who also run their own system. All doors, whatever their location, are mainly accessed via contactless cards but we’re also using Salto’s JustIN Mobile with Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). This enables a smart phone to be used as the access credential for the electronic lock on the door. The mobile key is sent ‘Over the Air’ (OTA) to a JustIN Mobile app installed on a registered and verified smart phone. The user receives a message that they have a new key and for which doors they have access rights. They can then present their smart phone to the lock to gain access via the JustIN Mobile app. […] We selected Salto as the access control solution plus IP Video Management Software firm Meyertech, Wavestore, Axis cameras, 2n Intercoms and Siklu Wirelss links. It was my task to procure and manage the new security upgrade which would include new cabling, software and IP cameras site wide tied into a new state-of-the-art control room.”

Fire Detection at the Heart of Leicester

Based in the heart of Leicester, Beauchamp City Sixth Form has recently opened its doors for its first term to welcome 350 A-Level students, following a dramatic renovation of a city centre office block, formerly home to BT. The new four-storey college, opened by The Lionheart Academies Trust, presents classrooms, labs and IT suites, as well as study spaces and a library which will give students access to the latest academic research in their chosen areas of study. To ensure fire safety as part of the transformation process, main contractors worked with Avalon Technology Group, who specified Comelit’s innovative Atena fire panels to operate across the site. This solution is a user-friendly touch screen addressable system, with the capacity to extend to 4 loops, supporting up to 1000 devices, due to its dual processor technology. In total, four panels have been networked at the college to manage the overall system requirements.
Guy Stephens, Director Avalon Technology Group said: “This was a complex renovation to facilitate the integration of security and fire safety, whilst working with the main and electrical contractors to convert the empty office block into such an extensive education facility.  
“For fire safety, we required simple to install systems that wouldn’t compromise on the technology component and could also accommodate the sheer size of the scheme, which required a total of 13 loops. Comelit not only achieved this objective, but also with a focus on design, suited the modern college environment.”



Avalon Technology Group
Axis Communications -
Comelit -
Dahua Technology -
Hikvision -
Meyertech -
Milestone -
NEC Corporation -
Salto -
Siemens -
Siklu -
Wavestore -


Axis Communications AB

Gränden 1
223 69 Lund

+46 46 272 18 00
+46 46 13 61 30

Comelit Group UK Ltd

Unit 4 , Mallow Park
Watchmead, Welwyn Garden City, Herts, AL7 1GX

+44 844 870 6762

Hikvision Europe

Dirk Storklaan 3
2132 PX Hoofddorp

+31 (0) 23 554 2770
+31 (0)23 5631112

Dahua Technology

NO. 1199,Bin'an Road

Milestone Systems A/S

Banemarksvej 50 G
2605 Broendby

+45 88 300 300
+45 88 300 301

SALTO Systems

Polígono Lanbarren, C/ Arkotz, 9
20180 Oiartzun

Siemens Smart Infrastructure

Theilerstrasse 1a
6300 Zug

+41 41 724 24 24


43 HaSivim St.
Petach Tik Petach Tikva 49517

+972 3 9214015
+ 972 3 9214162

Wavestore Global Ltd.

1st Floor, Boundary House, Cricket Field Road
UB8 1QG Uxbridge

+44 (0)1895 527 127