Camera system installation at the data center.
German IT system house implements remote monitoring at its data center with the assistance of network cameras.
Bechtle AG, a leading European IT company based in Germany, moved to an e-shelter data center in Frankfurt in 2017. Besides implementing building security measures, the aim was to comprehensively ensure information security of the data using camera technology with remote monitoring.
The criteria for selecting a suitable solution were already clearly defined beforehand: the cameras had to deliver excellent image quality so that all details could be captured even when zooming in. It was also important for the cameras to be able to detect movement and send real-time notifications of events. For this reason, the video management software required was also a crucial factor. Bechtle opted to work with its long-standing manufacturer partner Axis Communications, and installed a total of 25 network dome cameras and three network cameras providing a 360 panoramic view over and area of 500 m2 . The solution was complemented by AXIS Camera Station, a verified video management software for managing network video products.
The installation of the network video solution and the commissioning of the system were straightforward and it was possible to start using the accompanying video management software without any additional training. The authorization concept, which regulates access to live footage, has since proven to be particularly practical and indispensable.
We have been working closely with Axis Communications for many years. We are hugely impressed with their products and very satisfied with the ease of use they offer. The network video solution gives us a great sense of security, because it allows us to see what is happening at our data center at any time and react immediately.
Bechtle AG, with its head office in Neckarsulm, was founded in 1983 and is one of the leading IT companies in Europe. With 70 IT system houses in Germany, Austria and Switzerland as well as e-commerce companies in 14 countries, Bechtle offers a complete range of IT infrastructure and IT operations from a single source encompassing all manufacturers to more than 70,000 customers from trade and industry, the public sector and the financial market. Bechtle currently employs around 11,000 staff and is listed in the MDAX and TecDAX indexes. Sales in 2018 exceeded 4.3 billion Euros.
Management of sensitive data with the highest possible level of protection
Bechtle data center was planned back in 2016. After numerous profitability analyses, the company decided against building its own data center and instead use the space offered by an established data center provider. Bechtle set up the company’s own data center at the premises of e-shelter in Frankfurt am Main, the leading European provider of data center services. That said, IT systems and operations remain entirely in the hands of Bechtle.
Bechtle has always been committed to particularly high security standards in its operations with its dual-site strategy. However, the company was looking for an additional solution that could also map physical activities at the premises to be able to control and protect its vast store of sensitive data even more effectively. Monitoring using network cameras, motion detection and remote access appeared to be the best strategy. The selection criteria also included:
> Excellent image quality
> Network camera zoom function
> 360° view > Motion detection with real-time notification
> Video management software with authorization control
> Easy operation of the entire system
“Taking into consideration all the above selection criteria, combined with the long-term sustainability strategy applied by Axis, ultimately made it easy for us to decide to go with Axis,” says Jürgen Messmer, Business Service Manager at Bechtle AG.
Best possible control and security – without being on site
Outsourcing proprietary systems, especially with data content, requires a high degree of trust in the company involved. E-shelter data centers already offer a very high standard of security, and the buildings are protected by a variety of security measures. However, the additional network cameras also allow more specific and above all independent administration and individual protection solutions for the Bechtle servers operated there, so that the data can be secured independently and as effectively as possible.
Bechtle offers professional solutions for video surveillance projects for Small and Medium enterprises and has been an Axis Channel Partner for many years. Bechtle selected Axis network cameras for its own premises as a result of years of positive experience and reliable partnership. A total of 25 network dome cameras and three network cameras providing a 360° panoramic view were installed over an area of 500 m2 . The dome cameras keep tabs on the cold aisles and can also zoom in on the individual server racks if required.
The three multi-sensor cameras monitor the entire room and provide a seamless panoramic view. The network cameras are managed by AXIS Camera Station video management software, which forms the core of the entire system. The system is operated and administered remotely, and image data can therefore be retrieved from anywhere at any time. It can even be managed while on the move, thanks to AXIS Mobile Viewing app. An authorization concept also regulates staff access to the video footage.
The system’s motion detection function is also particularly helpful and essential: the cameras report back when they detect movement and the video management software sends a real-time alert by e-mail. “The security of our data and information takes top priority. Therefore, it is of course important to know who is authorised to access the rooms at the data center in Frankfurt, and also when and where. Being able to control all this from our company’s head office in Neckarsulm using the video management software is really fantastic,” explains Florian Münch, Infrastructure Specialist at Bechtle.
A reliable system for round-the-clock use
The network cameras and the associated video management software were commissioned in 2017 with the on-site support of e-shelter’s IT installer. The network cameras, which are all compliant with the ONVIF standard – the global, open industry standard – were preconfigured at Bechtle in Neckarsulm and then fine-tuned on site by remote control. No additional staff training was necessary due to the intuitive handling of the installation and configuration, as well as the easy operation of the video management software.
Access to the camera system is provided by a multilevel authorisation concept consisting of groups of administrators, operators and viewers. This controls exactly which images can be accessed by whom and at what time, who is allowed to change settings, and who is not allowed to access the system or allowed only partial access. All these features are used to provide the best possible data security at the data center.
“We have been working closely with Axis Communications for many years. We are hugely impressed with their products and very satisfied with the ease of use they offer. The network video solution gives us a great sense of security, because it allows us to see what is happening at our data center at any time and react immediately,” says Jürgen Messmer.