Security companies located in the European Union are some of the leading organizations in the global security sector. This industry has a revenue of almost €200 billion, and it employs over 4.7 million people.
Nevertheless, even with such encouraging numbers, the EU alarm systems market is plagued with problems. The three major issues of this industry are:
- Fragmentation - Each EU Member State holds onto its own legislation regarding security and alarm systems and is reluctant to let go.
- Institutional market - The security systems buyers are mainly public authorities. In cases where there is a commercial market, it is strictly controlled by legislation and different institutions.
- Provoking fear - The public is wary of new security measures and technology, mainly because they fear infringing on their privacy. While everyone wishes to feel safe, they wouldn’t want their human rights violated in turn.
EU-Wide Certification Concept
Many, if not all, of the above-mentioned issues of the EU security systems industry would be solved by introducing a certification scheme that would encompass the entire European Union. Would that be covered by the EUCC Scheme through a Protection Profile ? would it require a "substantial" or a "high" security assurance level ? These choices would have a major impact on the market according to a study done by the European Commission. Here are the four major benefits such a concept would have:
1. Reduced number of required certifications
At this point, an average manufacturer of a security alarm system has to apply for anywhere between 10 and 15 certificates to operate in different EU Member States. Some of these required certificates include CertAlarm, Alarm System Certificate, the Open Network Video Interface Forum (ONVIF), and the Physical Security Interoperability Alliance (PSIA).
This extensive list of certificates would be reduced to only a single certification valid and accepted by all Member States.
2. Reduced certification cost
Depending on the product specifications, the certification cost of an alarm system today is around €200k - 300k for full access to the EU. That cost would be reduced to €40k - 60k if a single certification scheme is adopted. If we calculate the cost savings over a single year, it would amount to an average of €4.7 - 9.9 million for intruder alarm systems.
3. Shorter “time to market”
Current long times to reach the market because of the need to wait for certifications would be significantly reduced. A shorter “time to market” would lower the risk of a new product being replicated by competitors. ENISA (the European Network and Information Security Agency) would contribute to the acceleration of this process by providing the necessary information and documentation for compliance.
4. Increased competitiveness
Through the previous benefits (lower costs and shorter time to show up on the market), the level of competitiveness among different security system companies would increase. This would raise the overall market efficiency and stimulate productivity, performance, and innovation in the industry.