Improving Interoperability

PSIM is transforming interagency communication and collaboration, allowing airports to share information more effectively and simultaneously at all levels


PSIM then would provide step-by-step, automated instructions to help guide operators through pre-defined response procedures. Specific actions, customizable by the airport or TSA, may include alerting all authorized security and law enforcement officials of the incident via their mobile devices with pictures of the intruder or locking accessible doors. As a result, situations are identified, managed and even resolved in minutes. PSIM may help avoid terminal closures entirely, potentially saving the airport and airlines millions. Complete incident records are automatically retained for after-action analysis, training or prosecution.

In short, PSIM can deliver real-time interoperability. And it can provide materially enhanced security performance.

But imagine a given exit lane breach incident is not a benign incident, rather a quick attack. And imagine further that the same thing is happening simultaneously at several airports at the exact same time. Obviously, this second scenario is more grave than an isolated incident. With PSIM, airports could establish continuous connectivity with local police and with TSA’s national command center in Virginia. Those entities would not have operational control of the airport’s cameras or other security assets, but they could be granted immediate situational awareness for specified incidents that could save lives and trigger more complex response protocols.

With PSIM, a targeted airport could also quickly be informed that other exit lane breach incidents are occurring simultaneously. Obviously, that would impact each airport’s response and may elevate the number and type of assets deployed.

To conclude, the attacks of 9/11 underscored the importance of real-time information sharing and interoperability. The aviation community has come far since then. But with now-proven technology, the aviation community can readily take interoperability to a higher level, improving security, decreasing costs and strengthening critical interoperability.

Michael P. Jackson is Chairman & CEO at VidSys, Inc. and former Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation (2001-2003) and U.S. Department of Homeland Security (2005-2007).

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