Telkom plans surveillance product
South African fixed-line utility Telkom says it aims to establish a partnership with a suitable vendor to enable it to "provide total video surveillance solutions to its customer base".
This is according to Telkom`s sourcing consultant Lynnette van den Berg. "If we decide we want to go ahead with the project, then we will be issuing a tender soon," she says.
Telkom recently published a request for information (RFI) on its Web site, saying it identified a need for low-cost video surveillance products for the business and consumer markets, and inviting industry players to submit relevant information on how best to design and deploy such a solution.
The company adds: "The crime rate in SA is increasing, causing businesses to suffer severely - risk management and crime prevention are two of the key concepts in the business industry today."
"It is quite a large project," confirms Van den Berg. "The escalation of crime - particularly organised crime syndicates - means without smart technology, businesses stand to lose more than they can afford to."
No business will be awarded from the RFI, notes Van den Berg, and a decision on whether to contract a vendor to deploy the surveillance product will depend on the findings of the RFI submissions, and the interest from customers.
A source close to the process says the response to the RFI has so far been excellent. The closing date for submissions is 3 May.
Van den Berg believes the proposed product could have applications in a wide range of businesses, but predicts it will be shops within garages that would be especially interested.
The intended surveillance product will be based on existing access mediums - ISDN and ADSL - states the RFI.
The RFI requires information about the supply and installation of video surveillance equipment including hardware, software and management systems, as well as cameras, microphones and control room equipment".
It is envisaged that users should be able to view their remote locations via the Internet over a secure channel, typically a virtual private network, it adds.