Virgin Hyperloop is building the first new mode of mass transportation in over a century. This cutting-edge technology will connect cities at 670 mph using a magnetic levitation engine in a low-pressure tube. A combination of both hardware and software, the system is on-demand, and would deliver passengers and cargo direct to their destination.
Based in Los Angeles, the company has made significant progress on the path to commercialize hyperloop. With over 300 full-time employees, it has completed over 500 tests of its technology, including with human passengers.
Dawn Armstrong, VP of IT, and Michael Barrett, IT Network Engineer, oversee physical security deployment and management across the organization — including its video security and access control systems.
“We had three challenges to solve with our legacy video security system: 1) high monthly service fees; 2) no SLA on support requests; 3) no integration between the cameras and access control.”
Even though Virgin Hyperloop’s legacy provider charged a significant monthly service fee, it still took weeks to complete any support or maintenance request. Additionally, Armstrong sought to reduce incident resolution time by centralizing video security and access control onto one platform. “We had to look through different cameras to find what we were looking for, then pull the footage on each camera individually.”
“The return on investment was straightforward; our 5-year license with Verkada saves us about $400,000, approximately $6,700 in monthly maintenance fees.”
By moving to Verkada’s cloud-based solution, Armstrong and Barrett have natively integrated video security and access control on one centralized platform. She has unlimited technical support, free replacement devices shipped to her within two days, and an industry-leading 10-year warranty on all hardware. She has eliminated maintenance costs and reduced incident resolution time, while scaling and simplifying credential management across the entire organization.
Cloud-Based Access Control with BLE Unlock and Custom Configurations
“We have over 300 employees with the Verkada Pass App and touchless BLE on their mobile device. They can unlock any authorized door by simply scanning their phone over the door reader, which is a convenient way for them to gain access into secured areas.”
With the Verkada Pass app, Armstrong and Barrett provide employees with a COVID-safe and convenient way to securely unlock enabled doors. Leveraging keyless entry via Bluetooth, Virgin Hyperloop employees can use their smartphone instead of their badge as a mobile credential.
“The bonus here is that we can configure the distance that the BLE works. For some doors we require almost a touch and for others your phone can still be in your backpack or pocket. Great flexibility combined with security. Win-win.”
Centralized User Management with SSO, SCIM, and AD Integration
Armstrong and Barrett integrate Verkada with Azure Active Directory (AD), making it easy to manage user permissions for 300+ employees in one place. They have also set up SSO and SCIM to secure and streamline user authentication and provisioning.
“We have separate Active Directory groups based on role. For example, our cleaning staff is part of an AD group that automatically grants them access to all the doors they need when they’re added; same goes new hires, who are added to the default groups, and can use the Pass app immediately to unlock their doors.”
When new employees join, they are automatically added to default AD groups depending on their role, with the ability to override specific permissions as needed.
Straightforward Pricing Model with Fast Support and Deployment
“Now if we have a device to replace, we receive the product overnight or within two days. The support team is highly responsive, troubleshooting takes only 5 minutes instead of two weeks.”
Armstrong and her team have unlimited access to US-based technical support, which is included as part of her software license. Troubleshooting questions are answered within 5 minutes, a 99% time-savings compared to the 2-week average of the legacy provider. Replacement devices are shipped out within two days at no cost to Armstrong, and cameras are simple for Barrett to install with plug-and-play zero-configuration setup. They have effectively reduced servicing wait times by 86% while eliminating $400,000 worth of monthly maintenance fees.
Natively Integrated Video and Access Control on One Centralized Platform
“We cut the number of steps and time in half when it comes to incident resolution. From Verkada’s Command platform, we can see, find, and pull an access-related event in minutes.”
Video security and access control is seamlessly integrated to one centralized platform, Command, which leverages edge-based analytics to provide Armstrong and her team with immediate insights into door-based events. After pairing a camera with a door, they can easily select any access event to immediately view the corresponding video. To further expedite incident resolution, they have the ability to share footage in seconds via SMS, email, or a direct link. New features updates — such as Tailgate Detection — are released automatically over-the-air, future-proofing their Verkada system along with an industry-leading 10-year warranty.
Looking Ahead: Leading-Edge Technology and Innovation
Over time, Armstrong plans to add additional devices to the Verkada ecosystem as the organization grows. With physical security being a responsibility under her team, she makes it a priority to ensure the technology in place is enterprise-grade and built to scale.
“IT is moving into more and more parts of the business that are traditionally handled by facilities and operations teams, which means IT leaders need to get involved in physical security decisions so that more state-of-the-art technology can be brought in. Verkada is a modern solution that’s innovative and constantly evolving, adding new features and functionalities — you don’t realize what you’re missing until it’s there.”
To learn more about Verkada’s unified security solution, attend an upcoming webinar or request a free trial.