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A cost effective cloud-based platform for delivering the highest level of security, supervision and management for security companies utilizing Push-to-Talk and Internet of Things technologies.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - QR-PATROL PRO (A cost effective cloud-based platform for delivering the highest level of security, supervision and management for security companies utilizing Push-to-Talk and Internet of Things technologies.)

Reporting period: 2016-07-01 to 2017-06-30

QR-Patrol PRO is a real-time guard tour management system based on a mobile app and a cloud platform and integrating Internet of Things technologies such as beacons & wearables and Push-to-Talk. Our systems primarily applies to physical security companies, to companies and organizations that would like to supervise their premises, equipment or staff as well as companies that employ lone workers (who work alone without direct supervision, such as cleaning or maintenance staff).

A guard tour patrol system is a system for logging the rounds of employees in a variety of situations, such as security guards patrolling property or technicians monitoring climate-controlled environments. Most of these systems are based on handheld data loggers and RFID sensors and provide a mean to record the time when the employee reaches certain points on their tour. While offline systems can detect problems only in retrospect, they still remain the most widely used systems worldwide due to their simplicity. Technology evolution resulted into real-time patrol control systems which either use specialized devices with integrated GSM circuit to send data to a server or use a docking base on which the reader is connected in order to download and transfer the data.

The last 4-5 years a new generation of guard tour verification systems has appeared, based on mobile applications installed on worker’s smartphone and cloud technology. Instead of using dedicated devices the worker can use a smartphone to prove - in real time - his/her presence at a specific checkpoint. These online systems utilize the power and the increasing possibilities of modern smartphones and offer much more features and flexibility.

QR-Patrol PRO is on the evolution of the commercially available QR-Patrol and is the first Guard Tour Patrol System that integrates Internet-of-Things technologies in order to automate many of the routine procedures followed by security guards, provides accurate location data (even in places without GPS coverage) and detects man-down events. QR-Patrol PRO also integrates Push-to-Talk functionality in order to provide secure group communication between the security guards and their company.

QR-Patrol PRO consists of two main subsystems:

• A mobile application which is used by the security guards, in order to certify that they have executed the patrol correctly and that she they reached all the predetermined checkpoints at the time set, as well as to send incidents reports (which can include pictures, text, and audio messages) or SOS alerts.

• A cloud application which is used by the operators in the monitoring center and through which they can obtain complete management of the employees, patrols, schedules, incident reports etc.

One of the most essential tasks that the guard has to make using the mobile application is to prove that she has reached a certain checkpoint. This is done by manually by scanning a QR-Code label or an NFC tag or automatically if we use beacons. Beacons are small wireless transmitters that can be detected by a mobile phone, via Bluetooth. QR-Patrol PRO is processing the data received from the beacons and it can calculate very precisely the position of the employee (even in spaces where there is no GPS coverage, like at the subway, in the interior of a large building, in an underground parking etc.). Using beacons we make the scanning procedure much more intuitive, easier and faster thus increasing productivity and what matters even more, safer as the worker can now concentrate on her job rather than focusing on operating the smartphone.

Another IoT technology that we have integrated is the support of wearable sensors. QR-Patrol PRO can process the signals of a wearable sensor and detect if the person, who wears it, fell (man-down detection).
The third innovation that QR-Patrol PRO introduces is the integration of a Push-to-Talk functionality that operates like walkie-talkie over Internet, in order to provide secure
For the first period of our project we completed 12 deliverables, which include:

• The management of the project and the team
• Define the quality criteria
• Risk analysis and measures to mitigate foreseen and unforeseen risks
• Detailed requirement analysis (x 3: mobile application, cloud application, web services)
• Software prototype (x 3: mobile application, cloud application, web services)
• Website
• Business plan for the exploitation & dissemination of our project
• Flyer-newsletters-videos

We also completed many dissemination & communication activities which among others include participation in 3 international trade fairs, 4 brokerage events, 2 pitch events, 8 conferences, 2 workshops, make use of 4 social media with more than 440 posts and sent more than 20 press releases and 24 newsletters.

The major tasks we completed during the first period of our project is the development of location algorithms based on beacons, man-down detection algorithms based on wearable sensors and Push-to-Talk integration. We also reached the 1st Milestone (Space mapping using beacons).
QR-Patrol PRO uses state of the art technology in order to provide the highest level of security, supervision, and management for security companies and companies that employ lone workers. Consider, for example, a cleaning staff at a skyscraper or a maintenance employee at a large industrial facility who works alone and fell (because he fainted, had an accident, attacked by someone etc.). QR-Patrol PRO will immediately inform the operation center about the fall and the exact position of the worker who needs assistance.

QR-Patrol PRO automates, simplifies and accelerates the process of monitoring, supervising and communicating with security guards, saving significant business resources for the companies. The level of security for the workers will grow drastically, satisfying a basic requirement of legislation. The employees will feel reassured, knowing that the company uses state-of-the-art technology in order to provide the necessary assistance in case of emergency. Studies indicate that when lone workers feel safe, they are more productive and dedicated to their job.

“Secure societies” – protecting freedom and security of Europe and its citizens - is a priority policy for European Commission. Also, Internet of Things is a priority pillar for European Commission and it can benefit the European economy generating economic growth and employment.

Among our existing customers there are a lot of security companies, hotels, cleaning facilities, universities, police departments, transportation, hospitals, retail stores, parking lots, maritime, post services etc.

We have customers in 58 countries and most of them are outside Europe (USA – 40.6%, Europe 28%, Australia 5.5% and Canada 2.6%). QR-Patrol PRO aspires to be the dominant system in the physical security market and the even bigger market of lone workers.
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