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Clippings and Musings – Locksmith – June 2017

When there’s an elephant in the room it’s sometimes very hard not to discuss it, despite the desire to simply try to step over it or walk around it. The terrorist attacks in London, Manchester and further afield are a real “wake up call” for technology companies, as the head of the Metropolitan Police said recently.

With Google and Facebook now under close scrutiny, after having been heavily criticised for allowing extremist content to be hosted via their networks, it surely is time to really turn the screws on these technical giants and focus on proper internet policing. There are many, who abuse the social media network systems to vent, troll and harass on a platform which has enabled psychological bullying to happen to people on a daily basis. Now we learn that things are really gearing up. As we discover more about the darker places on the internet, surely there must be greater consequences implemented, for those who look to cause harm and murder?

“I think these sorts of incidents and the others we’ve seen in Europe are probably a bit of a wake-up call for the industry in terms of trying to understand what it means to put your own house in order,” Acting Chief Commissioner Craig Mackey recently commented.

“If you are going to have an ethical statement and talk about operating in an ethical way, it actually has to mean something. That is the sort of thing that obviously politicians and others will push now,” he said.

As technical companies look to face more confrontations with the Government over terrorism, we were told that not all extremist content could necessarily be accessed. Google has gone on to publicly apologise and made commitments to stamp out offensive material and radical activism. The company which owns YouTube had allowed corporate advertising to sit alongside hate crime videos as well as those with extremist and racist content.

With almost daily reports of this type of activity there surely becomes a point where law must kick in and new measures introduced to hold these companies to account? Khalid Masood, used WhatsApp just minutes before committing murder with his hire car as he ploughed into crowds on Westminster Bridge and went on to kill a Police Officer. Whilst there may be an inordinate amount of encrypted information to analyse, the internet surely has to be policed under one uniform policy, irrespective of different global legal frameworks.

What began as a technological revolution and social experiment which has grown into a fabulous avenue to connect, educate and sell, there must be ways to globally provide more safety?

Security has to be one of the highest priorities on all our minds at the moment and with cybercrime increasing, paralysing corporations which result in global chaos, I can’t be the only person to question about smart security. That said, the internet of things is now a huge buzzword and we are promised the best in secure options for our homes by manufacturers as they look to keep us safe.

The idea that the internet works together with a huge number of home devices is truly astounding and it is a continually evolving sector which is set to expand exponentially. That is an amazing feat.

How will this affect the future for homeowners and business owners? Burglars intent on breaking in still look for homes that are easily accessible which hopefully through smart technology, will become increasingly more difficult for them to achieve.

Keeping An Eye On Things

Cheaper Home Security Cameras are now more accessible for consumers making this a viable option across the board. The days of having to spend huge amounts on a good security camera are fading fast with camera hosting prices dropping quite significantly. Thanks to the introduction of products such as the cloud there will no longer be the need to store vast amounts of data, making it easier and cheaper to run both home and office security.

A decade ago fingerprint scanning devices seemed destined to be a product only for those with deep pockets – today it is part of our everyday living with the technology readily available on smart phones and computers allowing us to purchase goods and open secure forums such as operating personalised banking. This is a fast moving arena now and for the home security sector it is growing very rapidly with an increasing number of new build homes adopting this technology. Of course, if we continue to move down this road it will eventually eliminate lock picking altogether…we can but dream. Also with cheaper surveillance options now available, the scanning features will become increasingly attractive to homeowners.

Developing a means to digitally control security via the internet has become a huge business as it changes every day life for the better. For example, being able to monitor a property in its entirety while being on holiday provides great reassurance. The ability to control temperatures, lock doors and even switch lights on and off gives homeowners greater security and confidence as they look to protect all things within the home. With modern smart technology now providing direct links to a property, people can be notified immediately if something changes within a home, when they are away.

The possibilities to protect ourselves via the internet seem to be limitless these days with low cost options being developed.

Good for Business

For suppliers and innovators there is a great deal of potential and for the locksmith sector this gives greater scope to expand into new areas as the smart technologies develop. Being part of the bigger picture as it evolves means adapting rather than shrinking and it is extremely reassuring for all to see, that the innovators in this sector are committed to that purpose.

Helen Duval 2017

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