Enhanced security through GIS and GPS

Enhanced security through GIS and GPS


Ajay Magon
Ajay Magon
Vice President (Technology), RMSI, Noida
[email protected]

Security has been major concern of mankind for decades. Various devices have hit market to provide possible solutions and this list is growing everyday. Most of these devices are preventive and are mainly used to raise alarms. With growing knowledge and advancement in GIS and GPS technologies there is a possibility of new set of devices that along with preventive services can provide tracking and control services in case preventive services fails.

This paper examines possibility of usage of these devices in various requirements and goes on to discuss hurdles to be crossed while implementing solutions using these devices.

Whenever we start thinking about security of our vehicles, first thing which comes to our mind is Alarm System. Everyday new type of alarms are coming up which claim to be more securer than their competitor. But is putting Alarm System make it really secure or just a deterrent? With advancement of technology in GIS and GPS and increase of awareness of their uses to world at large, more devices are hitting market which along with raising alarm provide tracking and control services.

Security Devices
Most of the devices which are currently available in the market are being used for implementing Fleet Management System. But a closer look of these devices illustrate their possible use as Security Device which after detecting intruder raises alarm and have features to enable tracking of vehicle and possible lockout of vehicle from remote locations. Some of the devices available in market are:

  • Hunter Pro Personal-GPS
  • Hunter Pro GPS
  • GAP – HiSecure

These devices allow the tracking of vehicle with the only aid of a laptop or a home PC. Communication is through Serial (RS232) Interface which comes bundled with device and data is transmitted to this interface through cellular technology. On laptop one can display vehicles on a realistic geographic map and with sophisticated mapping engine one can zoom in and zoom out to virtually any level of detail and one can set automatic pan to follow the vehicle as it moves. Communication to these devices is two way so that vehicle can transmit its position and base station can check the status of the vehicle. With extended circuitry, one can link these device to vehicle’s horn, vehicle’s ignition system and vehicle’s electronics to lock vehicle remotely.

Devices listed above are not only one available in market. Most of devices like these are being marketed for implementing Fleet Management System.

As evident from list of these devices, most of these devices are based on architecture as detailed in Figure 1.

Fig. 1: Architecture

Main component of this architecture are:

  • GPS devices
  • Cellular Infrastructure
  • Control Centre

Even though number of these devices increasing day-by-day actual implementation is lagging because of several reasons. These are:

  • Cost
  • Communication Infrastructure requirements
  • Geographic data requirement

Cost of these devices is still very high and as most of the manufacturers are targeting niche areas like fleet management where number of devices sold is not high enough to bring down the prices. But as demand of these systems increase prices of these devices will come down bringing it close enough to Alarm systems and making it affordable by individuals.

Most of these devices work on Cellular infrastructure, which makes device visible only in area where cellular network is available. Because of which in countries like India there will be several black zones where vehicles may not be traceable because of non-availability of cellular network.

And similar to Cellular infrastructure, Geographic data will not be available as detailed as may be desired to give good representation of location/path of vehicle.

Even though there are some hurdles to be crossed before these devices could replace Alarm Systems in all vehicles but these devices can very easily be installed in vehicles carrying VIP’s or high value items.