Backgrounder: PSIA Profiles & Compliance Test Tool


The Basics


  • Profiles are designed to make the interoperability benefits of a robust technology specification more easily accessible to manufacturers and vendors.  The profiles include only the parts of the specification that are mandatory to support a specific use case or application.


  • Profiles are derived from a “parent” specification and define mandatory data elements related to specific use cases.  The parent specification is like a section in a library containing all the books on computer programming; a profile would be those books in the section that explain a single programming language.


  • The PSIA currently offers an Access Control Profile and an Intrusion Detection Profile, each derived from the PSIA’s Area Control Specification. Not every manufacturer supports every use case covered in the rich Area Control Specification. By complying with the applicable Profiles, these manufacturers can still build PSIA plug-and-play interoperability into their products.


  • Products and technology that comply with a PSIA Profile will interoperate with any other product or technology that is PSIA compliant to that Profile.


  • The PSIA’s Profiles Test Tool validates that a Profiles implementation is correct and complete and ensures manufacturers’ products will interoperate with other PSIA-compliant products.


The Benefits


  • A wide group of manufacturers can become PSIA-compliant more easily using Profiles and extend the use of de facto standards throughout the security industry ecosystem.


              Not all manufacturers support all the use cases detailed in a rich, robust specification like the PSIA’s Area Control Specification. Meeting the requirements detailed in the Access Control Profile, Intrusion Detection Profile and future PSIA Profiles, will streamline a manufacturer’s process of complying with PSIA specifications.


  • PSIA Profiles ensure product interoperability for systems integrators and end users.

In addition to drawing data elements from the Area Control Specification, the Access Control and Intrusion Detection Profiles also incorporate the data elements from the PSIA’s common reference specifications that govern how security systems communicate with each other, including the PSIA Common Security Model.  Including the common elements ensures Profile-compliant products will interoperate smoothly with all other PSIA-compliant tools and systems.


  • Manufacturers, consultants and users and integrators have an easy way to confirm product interoperability with the Test Tool and the compliance certificates it generates.


Practical Application: Faster Compliance and Guaranteed Interoperability


Ongoing economic pressures are making systems interoperability a growing concern for physical security IT and executive management. Compliance with PSIA specifications meets customer prerequisites for such plug-and-play compatibility and is a powerful product selling point.


However, a manufacturer of intrusion detection devices may find full compliance with the PSIA Area Control Specification would require it to address data elements its product does not generate or address. That manufacturer would instead comply with the very specific data elements defined in the Intrusion Detection Profile, becoming PSIA-compliant.


Similarly, a manufacturer of access control tools would comply with the Access Control Profile.


Using the Test Tool to confirm compliance, these manufacturers can demonstrate to consultants, integrators and end users that their products will seamlessly interoperate with all other PSIA-compliant products and systems.



Practical Application: Product Design and Testing


Manufacturers may use the Profiles Test Tool to test and validate Profiles compliance during a product’s development phase. Using the Test Tool in this way ensures the finished product is PSIA-compliant on its completion. The fact the product will interoperate seamlessly with an array of PSIA-compliant security tools and solutions can become part of a manufacturer’s go-to-market messaging.



Practical Application: PSIA-Compliant Product Selection


The PSIA Profiles will make it easy for a wide range of security manufacturers and vendors to become PSIA compliant. That means end users, integrators and consultants will have an ever-widening universe of plug-and-play security tools from which to choose. A tool that complies with the Access Control Profile or other PSIA Profile will interoperate with a tool compliant with the PSIA Recording and Content Management Specification, or with the PSIA Video Analytics Specification, etc.