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News vom 24.08.2006

Stepped-up security in Austrian post offices

Security equipment for all post offices supplied by Siemens

According to a recent study conducted by Österreichische Post AG, the amount of loss or damage caused by post office robberies has more than quadrupled over the last five years. To provide maximum security for both customers and staff, Österreichische Post AG has, after a EU-wide call for tender, commissioned Siemens with supplying new security equipment for all post offices. The contract covers delivery, installation and taking live of a state-of-the-art security system as well as maintenance, troubleshooting and providing a central service control center. An alarm verification system reduces the number of false alarms as incoming alarms are checked by the control center prior to being forwarded to the police. To speed up resource planning and shorten response times, it is also possible to forward the information collected by the surveillance system to the police in advance. Following successful pilot operations in eight post offices, all Austrian post offices will be equipped with the new system by the end of 2007 and linked up with the service control center operated by Siemens Building Technologies. The necessary investment amounts to € 8.5 million.

Brigitte Ederer, CEO and President of the Board of Siemens AG Österreich: “Our technology helps Österreichische Post AG to ensure the security and safety of its staff, customers, and assets in a comprehensive manner. What is more, the uniform security concept for all post offices and the use of the existing IT network for alarm and problem reporting purposes results in significant savings in operating costs.”

Centralized alarm evaluation and resource planning for all of Austria
Asset protection as well as surveillance of interiors is provided by means of motion detectors and video cameras whose images can be digitally edited for post-facto evaluation. However, if an alarm is triggered in a post office, an alarm report is generated which is first verified by the central service control center checking the current video images as well as what triggered the alarm (alarm pushbutton, motion detector) and then forwarded to the police. This helps avoid unnecessary police activities. The advance information transferred to the police allows the members of the police force to get a first impression of the situation on site before even proceeding there. The system detects problems in the equipment on its own and automatically reports them to the control center, which can then find the root causes and take adequate action. “We are convinced that this state-of-the-art security system from Siemens will make a major contribution towards providing protection to our employees as well as to our customers. And the system will also offer considerable assistance in police investigations, said Herbert Götz, Member of the Board of Österreichische Post AG, when the new system was presented.

Cost savings and ease of use
As the already existing secure IT network of Österreichische Post AG can be used for linking up the post offices with the central control center, there is no need to set up additional secure lines, which results in a major cut in CAPEX. User friendliness was a special requirement for the system: automatic self-monitoring, uniformity throughout the network, and plaintext messages provide for ease of use.

Long-term partnership
Stepping up the security in Austria’s post offices is just one more project within the framework of the successful long-term partnership between Siemens and Österreichische Post AG: in the context of the expansion of Österreichische Post AG’s letter centers, Siemens not only supplies four new letter sorting machines for the centers in Graz and Hall, but is also responsible for modernizing the letter distribution system as well as for enhancing the materials-handling equipment.