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Managing Emerging Threats;

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Security managers are constantly evaluating and re-evaluating programs to fortify readiness levels for the next potential threat. We have spent countless hours, weeks and months training and researching to prepare for things like workplace violence, retail theft, cargo theft and so on – anything to deter, detect, delay and/or deny criminal activity. We analyze the latest trends in criminal behavior and try to identify anything that could shut down an industry, whether it be critical infrastructure, healthcare, aviation, etc.

The recent threat to global health and well-being has revealed to security teams that there are other means by which we may be shut down or left vulnerable. Who would have ever thought that a pandemic would be the cause of such chaos to the security profession? ASIS has eight books available that make up the backbone of the Certified Protection Professional (CPP) study material. We went through all eight books looking for relevant case studies and guidance on the keywords of Pandemic, Virus and Outbreak. There were ZERO chapters that addressed these topics. Ok, if you have read them carefully, there is actually one… in information security.

We are now in the exciting position of being able make history by writing the chapter on “How to Manage Emerging Threats.” Very few of us have ever had the opportunity in our lifetimes to contribute in such a meaningful way to what our future colleagues will do when faced with something so catastrophic. We already found out the hard way that our colleagues of the past did not, so it is our time to step up.

We would certainly prefer to make advancements under better circumstances, but we are weathering the storm head on and supporting our Knightscope users as they make unprecedented advancements in their security programs. There have been many out of the box ideas in maintaining a solid security posture amid the increase of activity in some places (like hospitals), while others see a decline and are running smaller teams in response to government requirements.

WHAT HAS KNIGHTSCOPE DONE?

We have been able to quickly adjust robot patrols in response to increased traffic at advanced screening centers and triage areas; created new routes for clients that have temporarily shut down; and moved support systems, such as charging docks, to accommodate new mustering patterns. One of the most basic features – audio broadcast messaging – has helped our client’s calm visitors and provide reminders of safety and hygiene. All accomplished within a matter of minutes to no longer than 24hrs. Our clients were able to quickly shift their priorities and protocols with no disruption in operations by quickly notifying Knightscope of what they needed. And we are proud to say we were able to make it happen.

When we assess our next technology piece to add to our program, these are the out of the box ideas that we need to think about. How can I quickly adjust what I have without creating more vulnerabilities? How can my technology help me pass on information to people over and over in the same way, every time? Can I move my technology to a more critical spot without leaving me vulnerable in a less critical space? These are all the questions our clients are answering “yes” to with the help of Knightscope’s Autonomous Security Robots (ASRs).

As we advance in the security industry, we can take something away from what is occurring right now – we just added a new threat to our assessment matrix. Maybe what you are doing right now is working just fine, but are you satisfied with “just fine,” or would you like to do so much better? Trust that those of us at Knightscope want you to do better and join us in helping to make the United States the safest country in the world.

 

 

 

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A Memo to My Security Robots;

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From: The Office of the Chief Security Officer

To: Autonomous Security Robot (ASR) Teammates, et al.

RE:: Thank You

Good morning, Team!

Following our corporate-wide, virtual ZOOM meeting this morning, I wanted to take a moment to express my sincere gratitude for your dedication and unwavering support to our company during this difficult time. As you are aware, many of our colleagues have been directed to work from home and limit their time on the premises. Visitor traffic is almost non-existent these days, and general activity here is quite low. But as you know, letting our guard down is not a good idea, as new opportunities arise for nefarious activity.

In spite of all the changes and uncertainty, you remain ever watchful, notifying me and our leadership when something is out of the ordinary. You are notifying all visitors and passersby that we are closed and providing great awareness by reminding our employees that they need to be safe, healthy and watchful of their surroundings (the COVID-19 announcements have been a hit!). You have continued your patrols of our site day and night without complaint. I have not lost any of you to sickness or requests for personal leave, and you insist on showing up to work every day putting in 24-hour shifts to ensure the safety of our people and property.

This is exactly the type of work ethic I come to expect for from our ASR team. As robots, you may not fully understand or appreciate the importance of your work because it’s just what you do – and what is expected. I know you were busy watching our backs and unable to attend today’s team meeting… heck, you probably can’t even read this, but if it’s all the same to you, I’d still like to thank you for allowing us to work remotely while you hold down the security of our company and assets. It is comforting to know you are still on the job.

As I know you all will, please continue to call, email or text me if there is something that needs my attention. I will respond accordingly to any threats you send my way. I will also check in on you all periodically, from home, through my Knightscope Security Operations Center user interface. If nothing else, it will be extremely satisfying to see that you are well and to catch a glimpse of the outside world from the shelter of my own safe place.

To those of you outside of our organization who find yourselves in a similar situation, I highly recommend you consider adding robots to your security program. They have quite literally kept us from being completely exposed during such a crazy, unexpected crisis.

Our ASRs are relentless, tireless and immune!

Your Human Overlord,

/s/

Chief Security Officer

 

 

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How Security Robots & A.I. Have Become Such a Powerful Deterrent to Property Crime;

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Imagine you originally invested over $1 million in your brand-new urban home. You invested in it even further by renovating it over the years. You have gotten to know your neighbors. You live near where you work. You have your favorite restaurants and coffeehouse just an elevator ride away from you on the ground level. You have built a community.

But, years later, an opioid epidemic takes over your city, your community. Your car is broken into every few months. You hear of your neighbors being assaulted and having their cell phones and other belongings taken. Now all you have to do is walk downstairs to see the struggle firsthand. There are tents and people sleeping on the ground near human waste under the awnings of your once favorite restaurants and coffeehouse. There are used needles on the ground that you and your neighbors have to be careful to step over each day. You hear people shouting at each other. You see the boarded-up windows of an ice cream parlor you used to go to that someone broke into last night. Your property value is now stagnant because your once thriving and luxurious new neighborhood is now considered a high-crime and seedy area.

This was the reality for an entire urban residential community prior to deploying Knightscope Autonomous Security Robots (ASRs). They continued to add contract security personnel year over year, but the problems, the crime, the vagrancy, the drug use continued and even increased as their security spend increased. At the request of their Board of Directors, the Knightscope team came out and provided a site assessment and made extensive recommendations – what ASR models they should deploy; where their ASRs should patrol; which messages should be automatically broadcasted and in which areas and during which times of day; where in the parking structure should there be the most ASR patrolling presence; where the ASR’s LED strobe effect should be automatically activated and where it should be deactivated; where the patrol and broadcast volumes should be automatically increased and where it should be decreased… well, you get the point.

Once the Knightscope ASRs were deployed, the residents immediately recognized a mass exodus of undesirables. The tents, the human waste, the vehicle break-ins, the property crime, the drug use, all disappeared. The business owners of the retail storefronts began to see an uptick in business. Patrons felt safer. Residents felt more secure. It felt like the community it once was. It solved the community’s problems.

But, for nearby neighborhoods, it is a bittersweet victory, as just a few blocks away in every direction, where these technologies are not yet deployed, the same undesirable conditions exist. There just aren’t any robots deterring their behavior and encouraging them to take their business elsewhere.

Property crimes such as burglary, vehicle break-ins, bicycle thefts and vandalism are occurring at an alarming rate in the United States. According to the FBI, there were 7.1 million property crimes in the U.S. in 2018. Across 4 time zones already, Knightscope Security Robots & A.I. are fully dedicated to reducing and even eliminating property crime at a time when some governments are choosing not to prosecute or even enforce misdemeanor crimes. ASRs are a welcome relief to many clients – small to large.  And the wins against crime are racking up including from our law enforcement agency clients (see here for wins!).

People Detection Triggers Broadcast Messages Based on Time of Day and/or Location 

Through machine learning, Knightscope has trained its web-based software with millions of images of people, so now ASRs are detecting humans, in some cases, better than humans can detect humans. In addition, ASRs can automatically broadcast deterring messages emphatically upon the detection of a suspicious individual either by location or by time of day if the client so chooses. This is serving as a much more powerful deterrent, demonstrating to criminals that this machine knows that they are a human and that they need to exit the area.

360-Degree Eye-Level Surveillance Delivers Compelling Evidence

All Knightscope Autonomous Security Robots provide 360-degree, eye-level, high-definition video surveillance accompanied by signage that reads “Recording Video and Audio for Your Safety,” all of which serve as a powerful deterrent to criminal behavior. According to Knightscope end users, 360-degree, eye-level video that is on the move provides a significantly greater crime deterrent, with up to 100% elimination of criminal occurrences in some cases, than any fixed camera surveillance system.

 

Continuously Strobing LEDs Draws Attention

The Knightscope K5 ASR comes equipped with a powerful LED strobe light that acts like a beacon that can be seen from over 1,000 feet away. It continuously illuminates substantial surface areas and quadrants of a property, making it an undesirable visual environment for unwanted loiterers intending to dwell for extended periods of time and possibly commit crime.

A Rhythmic Patrol Sound Alerts Passersby

Knightscope’s Security Robots emit a repetitive and rhythmic patrol sound that serves as an audible psychological deterrent to possible criminals. When set at a loud enough setting, this patrol sound can be heard from all areas of a property, but clients are able to adjust the volumes to ensure the comfort of residents, visitors and neighbors.

Cellular Device Detection for Persons of Interest 

ASRs can detect blacklisted mobile devices (phone, laptop, tablet or rogue router) while on patrol. When a device emitting a Wi-Fi signal passes within a nearly 500 foot radius of a robot, actionable intelligence is captured from that device including information such as: where, when, distance between the robot and device, the duration the device was in the area and how many other times it was detected on site recently. Blacklisted device names can either be entered via the Knightscope Security Operations Center (KSOC) user interface or provided to the Knightscope Client Experience (CX) team for entry into the blacklist database, which can include a photo of the individual and description of the potential threat. This security program enhancement can detect for individuals suspected of committing a crime, persons who pose a potential threat, or those that have engaged in suspicious behavior in the past. Alerts can be escalated via email, text, voice or KSOC.

Escalating Communications for “Be on the Lookout” (BOLO) License Plates

Similar to the device detection discussed above, Knightscope’s security robots can also detect blacklisted license plates of suspicious or problematic vehicles. Those plates may also be uploaded directly into the KSOC user interface by the client or via request made to the CX team. Conversely, you may also
whitelist plates in secure lots or structures and receive an exception report each time an unknown plate enters the area. Alerts can be escalated via email, text, voice or KSOC. License plate detections also provide intelligence on how long a vehicle has been parked in the same parking space, which may then be used to alert a client if a vehicle has been sitting too long – like a Guest Parking area or an abandoned vehicle.

Now that you’ve learned about how Autonomous Security Robots & Artificial Intelligence are deterring property crime so effectively across the U.S. in all weather conditions, let’s set up a (virtual) meeting so we can begin addressing your problems with a true total solution today. Request a private demo today and let’s work together to significantly upgrade your security program.

 

 

 

 

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Top 25 Questions About Security Robots;

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As interest in Knightscope’s Autonomous Security Robots (ASRs) continues to increase, there are some common questions that almost every new potential client asks.  We’re even beginning to hear them in our sleep now.  And that’s not a bad thing!

People are genuinely seeking out solutions that will help improve their current security programs and potentially save significant money.  So, we thought it would be good to compile a list of the top 25 questions we hear and provide brief answers.  Of course, brief answers may not be enough for you, so we’ll also tell you how to reach us directly to dive deep into any of these or other questions they may have sparked for you.

1.     Do the robots require software to be installed at the client site?

No.  The Knightscope Security Operations Center (KSOC), a browser-based user interface, does not require software to be installed.

2.     How does the robot know where to patrol?

Knightscope works closely with its clients to develop detailed patrol routes that best address the specific needs of that particular site.  The Knightscope team then programs the routes into the KSOC for their security team to control.

3.     Can the patrol routes be scheduled?

Yes.  We provide an easy to use tool in the KSOC that allows our clients to set the exact routes each robot patrols by day and hour.  These schedule may be changed at any time, as often as needed within seconds.

4.     Does it require someone to plug it in to recharge the batteries?

Absolutely not. The robots are fully autonomous, will monitor their own energy levels and return to their charging station without human intervention.

5.     How long can it patrol for on one battery charge?

An average patrol cycle lasts between 2 to 2.5 hours, but there is plenty of reserve left in the tank in the event of a power outage.  The theme of our battery management strategy is to maximize the run time and minimize the charge time.

6.     How long does it take to recharge the batteries?

Just 15 to 20 minutes and during that time the robot is fully functional… minus the mobility, of course.

7.     How many cameras does it have?

Our robots have four cameras, providing 360-degrees of high-definition, eye-level recorded video.

8.     Can you see the live video from the robot?

Yes.  The KSOC provides access to both live and recorded video for all four cameras simultaneously.

9.     Can I access the video remotely on my smart phone or tablet?

Yes!

10.  Does someone need to be logged into KSOC, watching the video and monitoring the robot at all times?

No.  The artificial intelligence is designed to notify humans via the KSOC.  Email, text alerts or phone calls may also be utilized when needed if someone is not continuously logged into the KSOC or to allow operators to monitor other systems until an alert is received.

11.  Do the robots talk?

Yes.  They can be programmed to broadcast nearly any message related to security, safety, facilities, visitor experience and much more, in English and/or Spanish, in a male or female voice.

12.  Can you talk to a person, such as a visitor or trespasser, remotely through the robot?

Yes.  The microphones, speaker and call button on the robot allow for an intercom call to be initiated right from the robot to the KSOC, or from the KSOC to the robot.  The robot essentially acts like a cell phone for those in distress or need of assistance.

13.  Do you sell or rent them?

Neither, actually.  It’s a subscription service, similar to your cable or satellite service.  We provide the equipment and services for a minimum of 12 months.

14.  Who provides the maintenance and service?

Knightscope provides all maintenance and service nationwide.

15.  When a service technician is needed, how long does it typically take?

Knightscope provides 24/7/365 US-based support through the KSOC.  You have the ability to chat directly with a specialist anytime you need help and most service is addressable remotely over the air.  And if we must dispatch someone to physically service a robot, this typically happens within 48 hours on normal business days.

16.  What do the robots use for communication?

Cellular service (4G LTE) is used and is included in our subscription. The robots can also use a client’s WIFI provided there is ‘industrial strength’ blanket coverage in all patrol areas.

17.  How long does it store the video and data?

14 days is standard with our subscription with an option to extend it to 30 days.

18.  Where is the video stored?

All raw video is stored on the robot, with event related videos stored in the cloud.

19.  Can the robot be used in parking lots and parking structures?

Yes.  Over 60% of the robots d
eployed are patrolling parking lots or structures.  The K5 Outdoor ASR can travel between levels using the same ramps as vehicles, and the largest structure we are patrolling today is a remarkable 9-stories tall!

20.  How do they stay out of the way of cars?

We use technologies similar to those used in self-driving vehicles, incorporating LIDAR and proximity sensors into the robot’s navigation system.  This allows the robot to detect objects, including vehicles, and reroute itself around them within the pre-programmed patrol routes.

21.  Does it read license plates?

Yes.  All four cameras can read license plates in 360-degrees as it patrols parking areas.

22.  What happens if a person walks up to it?

1). The robot will stop, 2) It can be programmed to say “Excuse me” or another custom message, 3) It can reroute itself around the person and continue on its patrol route.

23.  Can it patrol on grass and dirt?

No.  We currently only operate on hard surfaces such as concrete, asphalt, commercial grade carpet, marble, tile, etc.

24.  Do they work in the rain?

Yes, and we’ve not heard one of them complain about it yet.  We have heard a happy whistling tune, though.

25.  What about the desert heat and the freezing cold?

Yes.  We have robots on patrol at client sites in the Southwest deserts and the frigid Northeast. Currently getting through our 3rd winter!

There you have it, folks.  The Top 25.  We always compare the amount of information we have to share as an exercise in drinking from the firehose.  There’s no way to get it all at one time.  So, if you’d like to get clarification on any of the above questions, you have your own set of questions, or of something percolates in the near future, reach out and let us know.  We’re here to help!

 

 

 

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COVID-19 Robotic PSA: Being Thoughtful During Difficult Times;

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Let’s get right to the point – we are all affected by COVID-19, either directly or indirectly.  But crises call for calm, confident and thoughtful leadership.  We must face such emergencies with transparency and flexibility and without the drama and hype often encountered through today’s many means of communication.  These are times when we are most vulnerable, and it is important for us to maintain vision for others when their own line of sight is obscured.

When reflecting on the current pandemic, we set out to assess the impact on those around us – our teammates, our clients, our suppliers and our investors – so that we might be able to positively influence fundamental outcomes.  We were genuinely concerned whether people and organizations would be able to withstand the shock or stress upon them and whether or not they were able to recover, or even benefit, from the disruption.  We immediately identified a set of common desired outcomes and began communicating a path forward.

Admittedly, our first concern was the health and safety of our teammates.  We identified the developing trend surrounding the spread of COVID-19 and took action ahead of the government directive by minimizing the number of employees at Knightscope Headquarters (KHQ) and authorizing the majority of the team to work from home.

However, given that public safety, physical security and wellness are classified as essential services, we needed a way to continue to operate and support our law enforcement, security and healthcare clients so that they could focus on their own set of priorities without having to worry about another system or function going down.  We therefore instituted a Work-from-KHQ (WFKHQ) policy in order to support ongoing operations whereby employees must obtain written approval (with logs) to work from the office with staggered work hours and no more than 2 people allowed in any part of the buildings at any given time.

We then focused our attention on our clients.  We re-planned and re-prioritized service, maintenance, upgrades, and re-deployments.  Although not optimal, we are working as hard as possible to ensure ‘uptime’ of service and maintain some level of normalcy for our clients across the country.

Next, we developed Public Service Announcements to communicate in both virtual and physical domains.  This entailed creating encouraging and uplifting reminders that were posted on all of our social media accounts.  Themes included practicing social distancing, proper hygiene and common-sense consideration of others.

In support of the social media outreach, we are now working offline to add numerous similarly themed, pre-recorded broadcast audio messages for our Autonomous Security Robots (ASRs) to announce when a person is detected and/or on an hourly basis, depending on client needs.  Some are delivered in fun and playful tones, and some more serious.  But the underlying message of them all is that we care.

And now we are actively investigating the reinstatement of a detection strategy previously under development which may be useful in identifying persons at risk of carrying COVID-19.  An initial assessment seems promising, so we are continuing the investigation, but we are seeking additional funding and resources to develop it.  It would be awesome for our security robots to proactively help during this pandemic.

The urgency of the situation continues, as does our resolve.  We will continue to work to identify additional common goals and develop solutions to adapt accordingly.  We will move early; we will move fast; and we will move decisively.  And we are calling upon the community for help and support.  We are all affected, and we’re all in this together.

 

 

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Civil Unrest and Robots;

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Since 2000 the United States has seen approximately 48 recorded incidents of civil unrest, riots or civil disobedience. Many of us can recall quite a few of these events, and even more law enforcement officers and security managers recall the steps they took to safeguard citizens and businesses during the upheaval. Many of these incidents were relatively peaceful, but many more resulted in property damage, injuries and, sadly, loss of life.

Having spent years training and operating in these types of situations, the force needed to quickly gain control can, at times, have a negative impact on the goal at hand – safety. We have all seen the news coverage focusing on law enforcement officers in riot gear and SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) teams using flash grenades, pepper balls and bean bag projectiles. More often than not, what they fail to show is the de-escalation techniques employed prior to the more dramatic footage that focuses on diffusing a hostile situation, reducing negative perception from the general public, all while providing effective safety and surveillance measures.

Law enforcement and security teams have learned to leverage technology to get ahead of these incidents while also implementing new tools into their risk management framework. An organization’s leadership will often turn to their security teams for input, or industry insight, into the latest steps for handling these types of incidents. Major concerns revolve around employee and visitor safety, the ability to maintain operations by shipping and receiving goods, continuity of e-commerce and intelligence on the actors perpetuating the event or calling for an escalation of activities surrounding the topic at hand.

During incidents of protests or civil unrest, identifying weak points within the security footprint is key. We often cannot, as the event dictates, install new technologies. We are left with having to increase personnel which can be a challenge. Local law enforcement can be strapped, and mutual aid requests will be focused on maintaining order or protecting critical infrastructure. Business safety and continuity of operations will fall squarely on the business. So, what do we do?

Many of the statistics provided by Knightscope clients show that there is a drastic reduction in criminal activity, loitering, harassment, etc., when autonomous security robots are introduced into their security programs. The utilization of robotics allows security teams to direct their robots to patrol in locations that they may not be able to quickly deploy human personnel.

Robots are an added member of the team that can be put on the front lines to gather much needed data, audio and video intelligence. Being able to rapidly diagnose information, provide real time event updates and review quickly changing variables gives security and law enforcement the upper hand in responding to these types of events and allows them to change tactics as the situation dictates.

Effective utilization of security robots also provides users with the ability to broadcast commands or messages through one or multiple robots at a time. During these types of events you will want to convey a message to those in attendance.

Having these messages delivered by someone in uniform could, potentially, exacerbate the situation. The presence of a robotic messenger allows users the ability to convey their message in a far less threatening manner and gauge the response in real time. Having this function could shift the tide in favor of peace as you will now be able to capitalize on the responses of those on the line or shift resources and personnel as you analyze the audible feedback of those outside.

There are a myriad number of uses for autonomous robots within security and public safety. Sometimes stepping outside of the box opens your capabilities and allows you to set a new standard in operations and response. Break away from the standard of, “…but this is how we have always done it,” and take advantage of the technological evolution we see ourselves in now.

While we hope that such events don’t happen to you, it’s comforting to know that Knightscope security robots are up to the challenge and committed to providing you with the technology to handle it and provide the public with a safe alternative when circumstances call for it.

 

 

 

 

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Initiation of Coverage: Equity Research Report on Knightscope;

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Long-term gains through innovation are not correlated with short-term volatility in the financial markets.

Intro-Blue combines an artificial intelligence (AI) platform with an independent primary research platform to prepare investors and corporates for productive meetings: the right people focused on the right questions.

Intro-Blue has initiated coverage on Knightscope and you can read the full equity research report here.

 

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How To Train Your Security Robot;

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When you partner with Knightscope for an Autonomous Security Robot (ASR) deployment, you also gain a deployment specialist, a 24/7/365 robot health and monitoring team we call the Knightscope Network Operations Center (KNOC), and a Client Experience (CX) team.

Each one of these play a significant role in ensuring the success of the deployment, and the CX team is your primary point of contact for all operational matters.  They can configure patrol schedules, set up alert thresholds, build alert protocols, customize triggers for the broadcast messages – by people detection, location, time or random – and even help create Persons of Interest (POI) profiles or Be On The Lookout (BOLO).  But most importantly we also empower clients to do all of this through your very own Knightscope Security Operations Center (KSOC) web-based user-interface account!

Configuring Your Patrol Schedule

When your Knightscope deployment specialist arrives at your site, they will begin mapping areas where you foresee the ASR patrolling or providing a static presence to be the greatest benefit to your particular application. They will create a 3-dimensional world of the permanent features of each potential patrol area by mapping readings from the robot’s light detection and ranging (LiDAR) devices. This is a critical phase in the implementation process where you can designate patrol zones or single point patrols (static observation points). You can then control each ASR’s patrol schedule by time of day and day of the week. You can even elect to have each day have a completely different patrol schedule, making it nearly impossible for someone to predict where the robot will patrol next.

The patrol zones are labeled and color coded so you can set the schedule down to thirty (30) minute increments. You can also alter the schedule at any time or on any day from the KSOC. If you have a special event or an incident that you’d like to dedicate the robot’s various detections to, you can send the robot to a specific patrol zone or single point patrol and when it reaches the most ideal location you can “stop patrol” and freeze the robot’s patrolling to gather more real-time, actionable intelligence.

Setting Up Your Alert Thresholds

For a fully loaded ASR, you can have your People Detections set to provide you with alerts via email, text, voice or KSOC alert notifications by time of day and/or by location and with 360-degree video clips, images and map locations. Thus, if there are areas of your deployment site where there should be no people during certain hours or in certain locations, your ASR can be setup to alert you and your team in various ways.

For Thermal Hazards, you can designate which temperatures and/or times of day for temperature anomalies that should be considered alerts. This also applies to blacklisted devices and license plate detections. If your ASR detects a person of interest (POI) or mobile device MAC address, you can receive text, email, phone call or KSOC alert notifications.

Lastly, you can select parking meter thresholds for how long vehicles are allowed to be parked in certain areas. If you have parking structures or lots that prohibit 24-hour parking, your ASR can alert you with license plate numbers, map locations, images and 360-degree HD daylight / lowlight video clips. 

Building Your Alert Escalation Protocol

While your ASR is on patrol deterring crime and unwanted behavior by providing a powerful physical presence, it is communicating real-time alerts based on anything that falls outside of your alert thresholds. It is critical that these alerts go to the right email, text message recipient or telephone number so that the right team members can respond accordingly – or simply an alert on the KSOC itself. Whether it’s a person detected in a secured area, a thermal anomaly, a parking meter violation or a POI detected, the right team member will be alerted with the right information at the right time.

Designating Your Automatic Broadcast Messages Upon People Detection or Location

Your ASR has the capability of providing real-time automatic, pre-recorded and pre-defined broadcast messages using a male or female voice based on time of day and / or based on the location the individual or individuals were detected. These messages can range from “I’m a security robot, nice to see you here,” to “the authorities have been notified of your presence,” or to anything you’d like the robot to broadcast based on the detection.  Sometimes even in different languages.

Implementing Parking Enforcement Thresholds

Whether it’s a non-24-hour parking garage or an electric vehicle charge station with a 4-hour limit, your ASR can not only track how long each vehicle has been parked in each parking space, but it can alert you or your team members to any vehicles that are in violation of various parking restrictions. Your team gains an entirely new layer of parking enforcement and investigative capability.

Creating Persons of Interest (POI) Profiles

The number one cause of workplace violence is domestic violence spilling over into the workplace, and the cornerstone to a solid Workplace Violence Prevention (WVP) plan is early detection.  You may at any time add new threats to your deployment for the ASR to “Be on Lookout” for, including domestic abusers, disgruntled former employees, a problematic individual or a suspicious person.

Your ASR can detect and deliver alerts for anyone that you’ve added to your KSOC account list using license plates or MAC addresses from mobile devices that you or your team have blacklisted. Your ASR, via the KSOC, will alert you with headshots of the POI’s (if you loaded them) as well as the reason(s) why that person was blacklisted to better assess the level of threat.

Now that you’ve learned How to Train Your Security Robot, let’s set up a meeting so we can begin addressing any issues you may be facing today. Looking forward to chatting with you about all things ASR soon!

 

 

 

 

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Why Autonomous Security Robots are Industry Agnostic;

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“So tell me, what specific industries are your robots designed for?” That’s a common question we hear from prospective adopters and investors of our Autonomous Security Robots (ASRs).  Logically, there are benefits to utilizing products and services designed and engineered for a specific industry.  However, that was not our strategy from the outset.  Our goal is to help every organization, every security professional, every police officer, in nearly any environment, property or facility, to be able to deter and detect criminal activity more effectively and, thus, make the United States of America the safest country in the world. While we have a lot of work to do, the great news is that the opportunities are omnipresent!

For argument’s sake, let’s take a look at casinos and children’s hospitals – two very, very different industries in which we are currently experiencing great growth.  It’s extremely important to protect the safety of visitors and employees in both environments without negatively affecting the overall experience they have while on site.

Just like most other businesses in most other industries, there’s a small percentage of people whose intent is to commit a crime or be disruptive to the other 99% or so.  Let’s pause here for a moment to think about this: attract the people you need at your business, repel criminals.  Can you think of a business or place where this basic need doesn’t apply?  Sports arenas, retail centers, schools, universities, banks, office buildings, corporate campuses, hotels, public parks, theme parks, movie theaters, apartment complexes, public transit, warehouses, distribution centers, and the list goes on and on, including hospitals and casinos.

Time and again we’ve seen firsthand, not only how our robots attract people in a positive way, but also the phenomenal impact they have in deterring criminal activity.  Here are three examples of the latter:

  • ·A major hospital network was experiencing, on average, 2 crimes per week in the parking lot of one of their main hospitals.  Once our K5 Autonomous Security Robot was deployed, the crimes were eliminated, recording zero crimes in the following 12 months.

  • After using a K5 for the first 7 months in a public park, the Huntington Park Police Department recorded a 46% reduction in crimes and 68% reduction in citations (see details here).

  • A commercial property in downtown San Francisco was averaging 20 crimes per month in their parking structure, including trespassing, vandalisms, and thefts. After deploying a K5, they recorded just 1 crime in 12 months.

All three clients in the above referenced cases did not alter or enhance their physical security in any other way during this time. What’s additionally impressive about the hospital and public park is that they are open access properties, 24/7, meaning there aren’t perimeter gates and fences that are closed or locked to limit access or secure it after hours.  Anyone can drive or walk onto the properties at any time from all directions.

It’s hard to imagine that there’s an organization on the planet dealing with the threat of criminal activity on their premises that doesn’t yearn for similar results. These are eye-opening statistics that should get the attention of any organization’s C-Suite.

There’s an interesting fact about our ASRs that further points to being industry agnostic: over 60% of them currently deployed are being used to secure a parking lot or parking structure, either exclusively or in addition to other areas of a client’s property. Why the high percentage? It’s a common area for crime that directly impacts visitors and employees. But due to their size and physical layout, it can be difficult and costly to secure them consistently.

Our clients have not only found the ASRs effective, but cost efficient, too. So, as you read through this list again, is there even one that would likely have crime-free parking areas? Sports arenas, retail centers, schools, universities, banks, office buildings, corporate campuses, hotels, public parks, theme parks, movie theaters, apartment complexes, public transit, warehouses, distribution centers.

Looking beyond casinos and hospitals, our client list is also evidence of our broad appeal across many industries. If you take a look at our website’s main homepage and our gallery section, you’ll see clients from an assortment of industries.  We assure you this is not on purpose, but a reflection of our ASRs’ appeal to different companies, big and small, in different industries, who are committed to providing the safest environment possible for their visitors, tenants, vendors, students and employees.

So perhaps the real question is, “What industries are not a fit for our robots?” It’s difficult to come up with one.  Well, for the sake of being modest we’ll list space exploration as one … for now.

 

 

 

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Posted in Blog

Cuffed and Stuffed;

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It is not uncommon for law enforcement and security teams to avail themselves of new technologies in an effort to gain the upper hand against crime.  When such tools are adopted, it is natural to seek media attention to share how forward-thinking your organization is with its advanced new tech – especially something as cool as a fully autonomous security robot.  On the surface, this is a great way to share how we are safeguarding and protecting our citizens, employees, students and visitors, but it also invites the unsavory element to contemplate how to defeat these security measures.

Knightscope is no stranger to those that enjoy becoming the example for the rest of society.  Since we began deploying our robots across the United States in 2015, we have assisted numerous law enforcement agencies with the rock-solid evidence needed to strengthen case files and affidavits, ultimately providing judges with the evidentiary foundation necessary to issue arrest warrants.

You see, we love what we do here at Knightscope, and we take great pride in supporting our clients.  Our team is made up of some of the brightest and most talented engineers, former military personnel specializing in intelligence gathering, former law enforcement officers and investigators.  Needless to say, when our clients call on us to assist them, we have a crack team ready, willing and able to help “cuff and stuff” the alleged bad guys.

You may recall one of our very first incidents in which an inebriated individual stumbled onto Knightscope’s property and assaulted one of our robots.  The robot was unhappy being a victim and was undeterred from immediately sounding alarms and reporting the incident to our Knightscope Network Operations Center (KNOC) team.  The subject was caught on site and detained by our very own EVP and Chief Client Officer (a former police officer himself) until the Mountain View Police arrived to provide room and board for the night.  Since then, there have been many others, from grown adults to teenagers, who have tempted fate only to later find themselves in the same rent-free accommodations (i.e., jail).

In September 2018, an individual drove onto the property of a client in Washington where a diligent Knightscope K5 was patrolling.  The suspect made his way over to the robot, looked it over, drove around the parking lot and then proceeded to use his vehicle to ram the robot.  He then burglarized two buildings.  100% of the evidence in this case was gathered by the robot and provided to police, and later the prosecutor’s office.  The case was finally adjudicated in December 2019 with the accused pleading guilty to three felonies.  Law enforcement investigators are always seeking out the “smoking gun” that proves beyond a shadow of doubt that this is the person that committed the crime.  And according to the District Attorney’s office, this was a slam-dunk case as a result.

Another compelling case occurred in 2019 and has come to be known as our “New Year’s Knuckle Heads.”  Two gentlemen meandered onto our client’s property where, you guessed it, another K5 was patrolling.  The two suspects in this instance were wearing long sleeves and hooded sweatshirts in an attempt to conceal their identities, but there is nothing foolproof in forensics and criminals always unknowingly leave behind a key piece of evidence.  During this investigation, a very distinct tattoo was observed on one of the subjects’ hands.  Police were able to use this as a form of “fingerprint” to identify the individual, and from that, the two subjects were subsequently located, apprehended and held financially responsible for the damage that they caused.

These are just a few of the many documented incidents we have encountered and aided in prosecution.  Security technology needs to work for the end user and quickly provide the information needed to deter crime.  As these examples highlight, the success of the technology also comes from the ability to recall, document and deliver forensic data to the prosecutors charged with holding the offenders accountable for their actions.

Take a lesson here, when you encounter a Knightscope robot feel free to say hello, take selfies/videos and enjoy the experience.  But if you are there to cause trouble, the chips are stacked against you.  As we always say in Law Enforcement, “you can run, but you will only go to jail tired.”

It is likely that messing with a security robot is a felony and we have all the evidence to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law.  We have and we will.

As you know, it is not a good idea to assault a police officer, mess with a law enforcement vehicle, or confront a security guard.  It is also not a good idea to mess with an Autonomous Security Robot.  It is there to help secure the places you work, study and visit so be nice to the robots!

P.S. LATEST UPDATE:

In February of 2020 Knightscope team members assisted a local municipal police department in identifying an individual suspected of vandalizing their K5 robot. As we have stated before in this article, it is not wise to mess with the robot; let alone one that is used by the police! Knightscope’s dedicated team received an alert from the robot and quickly identified that the individual attempted to damage the cameras on the robot. Although they were successful in causing damage, there was still plenty of great evidence for the police department. With the help of Knightscope, the police department notified our team that within 9 days of the incident the suspect had been identified, arrested and charged with one count of felony vandalism. He is still sitting in jail currently.

P.P.S. AND ANOTHER UPDATE:

In one of the above referenced cases, the presiding judge ordered restitution be paid to Knightscope in the amount of $21,968.56 as part of the defendant’s sentencing. The Court Clerk’s Office will be monitoring the defendant to ensure that he satisfies the obligation. If not, further charges may be applied. OUCH! It’s just not worth the risk. As we said before, we will prosecute to the fullest extent of the law.

 

 

More blogs…

1 Million Hours!

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What Happened in Huntington Park?

Top 5 Mistakes When Hiring Security Robots

2019 Knightscope Highlights

Can Security Robots & AI Enhance Workplace Violence Prevention (WVP)?

How Security Robots & AI Are Deterring Extended Loitering and Criminal Vagrancy So Effectively?

Posted in Blog