The Value of Standards Across the Security Ecosystem

Larry Lien by Larry Lien | 11.19.2012

Two engineers from two different manufacturers sat down next to each other after the PSIA’s successful demonstration event at ASIS this year. Out of curiosity, they decided to see how easy it would be to interconnect their two PSIA-compliant systems on the fly. Literally within minutes, the two systems, one for access control, the other for physical security information management, were exchanging data.

That impromptu integration captures the value and power of standards for the security industry, as well as the vision of the PSIA. Our goal is true plug and play interoperability of systems and devices across and beyond the security ecosystem. Our specifications—we now have seven, each built with broad industry support—are accomplishing this interoperability today so systems can deliver better security with a lower total cost of ownership.

During ASIS this year, leading access control, intrusion detection, managed service providers, physical security information management (PSIM), video surveillance, and video storage manufacturers  all demonstrated the “plug and play” interoperability of their current PSIA-compliant systems. These demonstrations drew on the PSIA’s specs for access control, analytics, video surveillance, PSIM, intrusion detection, video storage and retrieval and building automation and enterprise systems.

We highlighted the value of our Area Control Version 1.0 specification.  This specification, our newest, provides a common and comprehensive way to harmonize and share data among access control, intrusion and other systems.  Area Control is the spec that allowed Honeywell, Proximex, NICE, Kastle Systems, and Mercury Security to easily integrate their security systems.  This spec also allowed the UTC and NICE engineers to quickly integrate two security systems, not in days or months or even hours, but in just a few minutes. What’s more, the PSIA’s working groups will be defining the data sets in our specs used in common security implementations to make it even easier and faster to interconnect PSIA-compliant systems. Many such systems are commercially available today.

After the demonstration, integrators, consultants, manufacturers and vendors told us how excited they are about the PSIA’s specs. But don’t take my word for it. Watch them react to our interoperability demos in the video below that was produced by Honeywell.  Then, for more information about the PSIA or to learn about how to become a member, visit You’ll want to be involved in how our specs will continue to deliver greater value and better security across the industry.