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Intelligent Building Management Systems

Intelligent Building Management Systems

Introduction to Technology of Intelligent Building Management Systems

Contemporary facilities are beginning to use intelligent building management systems, especially in the new sustainable high-rise buildings. Intelligent buildings aim at the realization of energy savings, reduction in the cost of changing occupancy, maintenance of comfortable, safe, and secure environment, as well as improvement of the user productivity. In the course of this documentation, intelligent building refers to the facility with the ability and potentiality to integrate diverse technologies and interconnected systems aiming at offering support to the use of accommodation by the buildings’ users, efficiency in operations of the facility (Wong, Li, & Wang, 2005). Besides, such buildings have the potentiality to enable or facilitate reconfiguration of the space in agreement with the changing use. On the other hand, intelligent buildings might relate to the smart facilities with the ability to integrate diverse technological systems.

Intelligent buildings in the modern society have the ability and potentiality to incorporate or integrate diverse technological systems. These systems relate to sensors, IP network, wireless, communications rooms, data rooms, server rooms, plant rooms, structured cabling, and plant rooms. Similarly, the intelligent buildings have the opportunity to integrate diverse building systems. These building technological systems include the building management system, HIVAC controls, lighting control, fire alarm, waste management utilities, stand-by generators, UPS, intruder alarm, and water management.

On the other hand, the intelligent buildings might also incorporate the ICT systems in addressing diverse needs and expectations of the contemporary society members. These ICT systems might include office automation (data, the internet, and e-mail), media, telephony, conferencing, and IP-based applications. Additionally, the intelligent buildings tend to incorporate the business systems. Some of these business systems include the ERP, customer relationship management, integrated command, control centre, and help desks. These systems have enormous implications in the course of enhancing effectiveness and efficiency of the operations of the intelligent buildings, thus, the perfect platform towards addressing the demands and expectations of the target audiences.

There are diverse drivers for the adoption and integration of the intelligent management systems in the form of economic and environmental reasons. From this perspective, there are economic and environmental perspectives for the installation of the intelligent BMS. One of the critical driving factors is the desire to save energy. For instance, in the context of the United Kingdom, emissions from the buildings accounts for 36 percent of the greenhouse gasses. Nevertheless, there is substantive scope for the reductions of 74 percent of these emissions by 2030 through integration of the intelligent BMS. For instance, lighting and HVAC tend to contribute to the 70 percent of the energy in the buildings. From this illustration, intelligent BMS is essential in the provision of the platform for the reduction of the energy load through controlling lighting by timers or zonally (Metke & Ekl, 2010).

Practitioners also focus on the development of the intelligent BMS to facilitate reduction of costs as driving factors in the creation of the modern facilities in the digital era. In the recent decades, there has been an increase in the attention to the whole-life cost rather than the capital cost of the buildings. From this perspective, the growth of energy-saving technologies continues to enable energy to be the largest controllable operating expense in the modern facilities. Integration of the intelligent BMS is essential in facilitating monitoring and controlling of the energy costs through utilization of sensors to control lighting and telephone systems.

There is also the urge to enhance the reliability of the modern or contemporary facilities in accordance with the growing interest of the target audiences. It is valuable to demonstrate the fact that power grid tends to vary in accordance with continuity and quality with reference to the geographical location. Business entities continue to demonstrate the vitality of the IT, digital communication, and uninterrupted energy in addressing the demands and expectations of the consumers. Categorically, intelligent BMS is essential in enabling close monitoring with the intention of limiting variations in the energy intensity.

Developers have also focused on the development or implementation of the intelligent BMS for the safety-driving factor. In this context, intelligent MBS is crucial in enabling safety features such as the smoke extraction fans, fire doors, supply fans, and dampers, which undergoes monitoring and controlling from the safety positions or states. There is also need to facilitate improvement of the value of the modern facilities. Intelligent BMS are valuable in enabling the building owners to improve the value of their assets through reduction of the operational costs, as well as provision of the greater level of comfort regarding the desires of the occupants.

From the above illustrations, intelligent BMS aims at realization of diverse benefits to the contemporary building owners and the occupants. From an IT perspective, intelligent BMS provides commercial or business advantage through integrating the use of systems and technologies in addressing the demands and expectations of the target audiences. For instance, intelligent BMS associates with the convergence of the network infrastructure enabling flexible utilization of accommodation and operational efficiency. This is through effective and efficient management of the building environment.

The realization of infrastructure convergence relates to the use of supporting IP-based networks, and wireless infrastructure within the building. In this context, it is valuable to demonstrate the fact that BMS utilizes open protocol over the IP-based network for the acquisition of data and controlling or monitoring of the activities in the modern context. Buildings or facilities utilizing diverse technological advancements provides platform for efficient and effective, as well as flexible platform for the reduction of the cost of churn.

Reconfiguring the access control and security systems is vital in demonstrating or representing the opportunity for multiple occupancies. There is also the concept of the self-access to facility enables the building occupants to access their documents in the modern context. Evidently, there is growing need for efficiency and automation of the systems in the modern buildings, thus, the development of the intelligent BMS by the modern builders. These buildings associate with competitiveness and sustainability, thus, the need to maximize the platform for the improvement of the image and reputation of the firms.

Security Managers’ Considerations of Intelligent Building Management Systems

From a security perspective, there are key issues, which relate to the protection of the security and privacy of the building owners, as well as users, and maintenance of the integrity of the building and operations of the facilities. From this illustration, there is need for the security to enable continuing availability of the accommodation for the owners and users. Security managers’ have the obligation to make vital considerations in the development of the intelligent BMS. Ideally, it is appropriate for the building owners and designers to engage in designing intelligent BMS for the security issues. In this section, the focus will be on the security considerations in the designing the intelligent MBS. The focus will be on the evaluation of the physical security considers, network infrastructure considerations, and device selection as valuable components in the maximization of the designing for security.

Physical Security Considerations

In the initial instance, it is the obligation of the security managers to understand that security plan is incomplete in the absence of the desire for the physical security. There is need for the security managers to consider designing the new smart buildings for the security obligations. Physical security facilitates prevention of authorized access to the intelligent BMS devices, networks, and information. In this context, the security managers have the obligation to consider the desire of the owners and occupants, networks, and information. Lack of the physical security provides the platform for the intruders to circumvent other aspects or methodologies of protection (Eastman, Eastman, Teicholz, & Sacks, 2011).

Categorically, the security managers should consider combining diverse or multiple barriers to access to the facilities in the modern or contemporary society. Similarly, there is need for the security managers to locate mission critical devices in access-controlled areas, as well as in the locked cabinets. Evidently, it is mandatory for the security managers to oversee prevention of unauthorized physical access to the network devices such as firewalls, switches, and routers in the smart buildings in the 21st century. Additionally, there is need for the designers and security managers to consider protection of the communication cables, which run with the conduit, as well as the ruggedized cable chases. The physical security should aim at enhance the security and safety of the occupants of the smart houses, thus, the obligation to consider the safety of the individuals, as well as the devices or infrastructures.

Network Infrastructure Considerations

Network refers to the conduit, which allows the information between the intelligent BMS, enterprise system, and the outside world. Intruders with the ability and potentiality to tap into the network can contribute to the disruption of the flow of information. From this perspective, there is need for the security managers to consider the security of the network infrastructure in the utilization of the smart buildings and facilities in the 21st century. In the course of making these considerations, there is need for the security managers to consider protection of the access points, thus, safety of the network structure. In this context, it is valuable for the designers to consider limiting network access points through isolation of the intelligent BMS as much as possible.

For instance, adoption to integrate or locate the network access points in the virtual local area network (VLAN) will play a critical role in ensuring that the building traffic, broadcasting to all nodes and other communication channels remain within the logical boundary. This approach is essential in enabling the security managers to think carefully before concentrating in making decision towards grading outside access. It is valuable to ensure protection or security of the entry and exit points in the network. In other instances, it is appropriate for the security managers to consider granting access with the existence of valid reasons only. The approach or mechanism will be ideal in minimization of the risk and controlling the security costs.

Similarly, protection of the network infrastructure should relate to the utilization of firewalls in the course of controlling the access points. Firewalls have the ability and potentiality to offer security through controlling the flow of information into, as well as out of the network entry points. Security managers have the obligation to consider using set of user defined configuration rules. Integration of the firewalls in the network infrastructure will be valuable in determining the traffic authorized to pass through and onto the network.

The approach will provide the platform for rejecting the traffic, which fail to satisfy the configuration. In the protection of the confidential information on the network infrastructure, security managers should consider placing the firewalls at diverse transition points into, as well as out of the network in relation to the smart buildings and facilities in the 21st century. Considering integration of the firewall will play a critical role in facilitating filtration of information in diverse ways such as service control, direction, and behavior or content control.

Security managers should also consider integrates of effective management practices to facilitate controlling of the user access. The achievement of the safe or secure user access relates to the use of the authentication, as well as authorization (Palensky & Dietrich, 2011). Authorization refers to the means aiding confirmation of the users’ identities in their attempts to enter into the networking systems within the context of the smart buildings in the modern or contemporary society.

Authentication of the user authorizes the potential visitor to execute diverse functions in accordance with the configuration of the networking systems. Security managers should consider restricting the user access through central authorization, password control, network monitoring, and user management. Restriction of the user access might also relate to the establishment of the authorization requirements for each individual device such as servers, routers, and controllers within the smart buildings (Wang, Xu, Cao, & Zhang, 2007). Consideration of the stronger authentication is valuable in enabling the security managers to enhance security of the content of the networking structures.

Considerations of the secure internet framework must also relate to the restriction of the remote access. It is valuable to note that provision of the access to the remote users tend to offer unique set of security challenges, thus, the need to address the challenges through building of the additional protections into the networking infrastructure. Remote access should undergo consideration for the systems with sufficient protection against the external threats. In the course of executing this consideration, there is need to focus on the integration of diverse practices for the provision of remote access. In the first instance, it is valuable to consider utilization of the secure connections such as the VPN with the ability and potentiality to offer encryption, as well as authentication of the remote sessions.

Secondly, the security managers should consider usage of the secure protocols, as well as applications such as HTTPS and SCP, thus, the platform to avoid Telnet and FTP. Furthermore, it is valuable to consider assessment of the risks of the SNMP prior to incorporation of the concept into the design, thus, the platform to limit access to the authorized system administrators with reference to the known IP addresses. Utilization of the two-factor authentication might also be appropriate towards limiting access to the required users, thus, effective protection of the data in the networking systems in the smart facilities and buildings in the contemporary society (Wang, Xu, Li, Hong, & Shi, 2004).

Security Features

It is valuable for the security managers to consider adoption and integration of the security components, which facilitate protection of the data, as well as safety of the occupants and owner of the building or smart facility in the 21st century. For instance, it is crucial for the security managers to consider selection of the devices and protocols with the ability and potentiality to offer encryption, non-repudiation, and integrity. Encryption is essential for the protection of information aiming at traversing the networking, thus, limiting accessibility of such information to unauthorized users. On the other hand, consideration of integrity establishes potential change to the message traversing the network. Additionally, non-repudiation contributes to the verification of the identity of the information source. These elements are vital protection of the sensitive information on the networking systems on the intelligent BMS.

Moreover, the selection of appropriate devices should relate to the selection of devices with the ability to support logging. Event logging proves to be available on diverse devices such as firewalls, backup systems, and routers. Logs have the ability to facilitate early detection of the threat through recording significant network changes to the firewall configuration or user access, thus, enhanced protection of the information on the networking settings. There is need to consider consolidating the log information from the utilization of the numerous devices on the networking systems in the smart facilities and buildings (Clements-Croome, 2004).

Security managers should also consider exploitation of the devices with tamper proofing capabilities, as well as built-in-locks and other valuable control features through selection of the mission crucial components. It is crucial to consider integration of the intrusion detection system (IDS) to enable monitoring potential threats on the networking systems in the smart facilities and buildings in the 21st century. IDS tool comes out as a stand-alone device with the ability and potentiality to monitor the system events with the intention of identifying earlier threats on the networking systems.

Security managers have the ability and obligation to choose an IDS tool with the capacity to customize the existing rules applicable in defining acceptable network behavior. There is also need for the security managers to focus on the selection of appropriate and valuable wireless technology with several advantages in comparison to the wired technology requiring diverse installation costs (Nguyen & Aiello, 2013). These advantages must override the increased security risks in the application of such technologies.

From this perspective, there is need to consider utilization of diverse practices in the wireless technology with the built-in-firewalls while supporting higher levels of encryption in the transfer of information from the creator to the authorized target audience. Additionally, it is essential to consider hardening the wireless access devices through replacing the default administrator names and passwords with appropriate and strong components. Moreover, it is crucial to engage in the changing of the default system ID, as well as disabling the identifier broadcasting elements in the networking systems.

Hardening System Devices

Similarly, there is need for the security managers to engage in the hardening of the system devices to facilitate reduction of the risk of the internal attack. Hardening process tends to vary in accordance with embedded device, as well as the operating system of the device. In such instances, security practitioners should consider evaluating each device with the intention of determining the available ports and services, as well as potentiality of disabling the ports, which are not in function.

Confidentiality of Information

Security and safety of the building owners or occupants must also relate to the protection or preservation of the confidentiality or anonymity of their sensitive information. In the modern context, it is vital to note that technology tends to play critical role in shaping the decisions of the individuals. From this perspective, technology contributes to the improvement of the living conditions through enhanced efficiency and effectiveness in the delivery of quality services and products. Nevertheless, technology associates with external intrusion or hacking. In this context, it is the obligation and responsibility of the security managers to ensure the safety of the sensitive information on the networking systems. This calls for protecting the network while integrating components such as firewalls and strong passwords for authentication in accessing information. Protection of the information will be essential in protecting the sensitive information, thus, safety of the networking infrastructure.

Conclusively, the modern society needs and expectations such as cost-saving, sustainable energy, and efficiency have been at the forefront in facilitating the rapid growth and development of the intelligent building management systems in the 21st century. On the other hand, there are security issues, which affect the growth and exploitation of such products. From this perspective, there is a need for the security managers and practitioners to consider integrating diverse mechanisms to enhance safety and security of such facilities.


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