4 Ways Advanced WiFi Improves Building Security and Network Management

Every building or facility manager has one primary goal — ensuring that their guests or occupants stay satisfied and safe during their occupancy. To do this, building managers often offer a variety of amenities aimed at improving the guest experience to create meaningful long-term relationships with their inhabitants, and security surveillance systems to keep them safe. These amenities may include pool time, drinks, food, or even spas and game rooms. But there’s one amenity that outshines the rest — WiFi. In fact, building managers should utilize advanced WiFi and surveillance network solutions to improve building security. 

Importance of WiFi

65% of hotel guests will connect to WiFi within 7 minutes of arriving at a new hotel. And they’re not just connecting on their laptops. 76% of people travel with smartphones, and roughly 84% of Singaporeans regularly go online via a smartphone, tablet, or laptop — all of which they’re likely to bring to your building. That’s a lot of devices! And we’re not even including all of the building devices (e.g., surveillance, IoT devices, IPTV, etc.) that are also connected to your building’s WiFi network. For management, this overwhelming number of devices can quickly cause WiFi issues.

From security failures to slow speeds, making sure that your WiFi network is capable of handling your occupants’ WiFi-enabled devices is the key to delivering a satisfactory stay. Not only does your WiFi power your guests’ experience, but it also empowers your building security systems. Here are 4 reasons your building should consider investing in advanced WiFi & Surveillance Network solutions to help keep your network running smoothly.

1. Improved Cybersecurity

Surveys show that over 90% of hotel guests are concerned with WiFi security. Given that 1 in 3 Singaporeans have been subject to card fraud (often from digital theft), those figures aren’t too surprising. Over 35% of identity theft incidents were a result of skimming or sniffing data off of the internet and over public WiFi connections, and the average cost of identity theft is $1,343. In other words, your building’s public WiFi security can be the buffer that prevents threat actors from accessing guest information.

Of course, WiFi security doesn’t only benefit occupants. Your building also transmits data across those networks, and when occupants face a data breach, you’re the first person they’ll blame. A massive 92% of Singapore businesses were victims of a cybersecurity attack over the past 18 months.

Buildings managers want best-in-class WiFi network solutions that help deter threat with industry-leading firewalls, anti-virus and anti-malware features, IDP, content filtering, and application patrol capabilities. Of course, those features are only the start. For best-of-breed WiFi security, building managers should consider investing in WiFi network management solutions that are hosted in the cloud, like the Nebula Control Center (NCC).

NCC sends automatic firmware updates and provides rapid deployment and configuration capabilities to ensure that all of your network systems are running optimally. In addition, you should consider investing in networking solutions that provide reporting and threat identification capabilities to help you proactively mitigate threats across your network — not just react to immediate dangers. Zyxel’s next-gen NSG300 Unified Security Gateway supplies you with all of the UTM services you need to keep your network safe and secure.

2. Improved Physical Security

Cybersecurity is only one component of your building security profile. You protect your building with surveillance systems that help prevent theft and property damage. But, one of the worst things that can happen to a hotel is having its surveillance systems hacked. You need to protect your building security systems and enable them to run without a hiccup 24/7.

With Zyxel’s Nebula solution, you can set up GS1920-24HPv2 series GbE smart-managed switches that connect to NWA1123-ACHD and NWA1123-ACv2 access points. The Nebula Control Center (NCC) lets you view management traffic, and cloud-managed switches give you the power to monitor your camera’s power, data, and other statuses to ensure that everything is working effectively. For buildings with multiple cameras, having all of your switches tied to the cloud gives you unparalleled visibility and ease-of-use, allowing you to manage everything from one simple window.

3. Planning for Capacity with Scalability

Building managers are dealing with more devices than ever. 23% of Singaporeans use more than 5 devices. With the rise of smartwatches (one in six adults now own one) and IoT devices (over 30 billion total IoT devices on the globe), the number of simultaneous WiFi connections is growing. Capacity is now a front-of-mind concern. With all of these people streaming content (over 90% of hoteliers say that streaming video content is a top concern for most guests), downloading documents and files, and playing apps in your building, you need capacity and scale.

Major hotel chains like Marriot are already in the process of upgrading its WiFi capabilities to match their guests’ hunger for content streaming, and facilities across the globe are investing in significant WiFi upgrades to facilitate IoT technology. You want the capacity to handle your current guests and the scalability to handle influx periods. Of course, this is necessary on both the physical side (i.e., via port switches) and the digital side (i.e., via cloud controllers that can load balance traffic.) For example, Zyxel’s 8/24/48-port GbE Smart Managed Switch gives you an unparalleled upgrade capacity with 30W per port and plenty of future-ready port options. And, ZYXEL WAX650S WiFi 6 Smart Antenna 4×4 Unified Pro Access Point provides load balancing and smart client steering to prevent network clogs.

Advanced WiFi network solutions can help. You want solutions that offer WAN load balancing to handle heavy traffic periods and backup and recovery options to help keep your network online at all times. Your occupants’ experience is hinged to their WiFi speeds. Investing in capacity, scalability, and failure recovery should be a key concern.

4. GDPR Compliance

Many building managers rely on WiFi data to help them manage their network architecture. For example, part of Marriot’s plans to upgrade WiFi systems to accommodate content streaming includes measuring streaming activity to gauge what kinds of content people like — and then offer that content to them down-the-line to help offset some of the costs they’re investing in their network.

But collecting this data isn’t easy in today’s privacy ecosystem. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) have made the process of collecting network data complicated. There are specific rules to follow and stringent guidelines that have to be adhered to throughout your network. Do you really have the time to invest in reading and implementing all of these rules? Probably not. You have a building to manage and a business to grow.

Advanced WiFi networking and surveillance solutions can help ensure that your systems are complying with GDPR guidelines. For example, Zyxel’s ATP200 Cloud Sandboxing Firewall combines best-in-class UTM services that help protect user data while aligning policy frameworks with GDPR standards.

Go Nimbus Can Help

Go Nimbus is an authorized distributor of Zyxel wireless solutions, and we can help your property handle realize cloud networking. We can also aid in improving your building security through advanced WiFi and surveillance network solutions. Recently, we helped The Heeren (a major hub of commercial activity in Singapore’s Orchard Road) establish an easy-to-manage, cloud-based solution for all of their building’s switches and security cameras. With GoNimbus, The Heeren is now able to view and monitor all of their activity from one window and pull orders from a single tablet.

Are you interested in learning more about how to improve your building security and network capabilities? Check out our case study.

With the Nebula Control Center (NCC), WAX650S, 802.3ax WiFi 6 access points; XS3800, 10G switches with combo ports, and NSG300 or ATP800, cloud-enabled firewall, we can help you find networking peace-of-mind. Want to learn more? Contact us.