How to Capture AI-Driven Insights Beyond the License Plate

From tracking criminals to analyzing the flow of traffic in a parking lot to automating tasks, few technologies can be applied as widely as ALPR can, and PlateSmart Technologies has found a way to address virtually every application, from commercial to government use
From tracking criminals to analyzing the flow of traffic in a parking lot to automating tasks, few technologies can be applied as widely as ALPR can, and PlateSmart has found a way to address virtually every application, from commercial to government use.

In a world increasingly driven by big data, business decision makers can often feel as though they are drinking from a fire hose. There is no lack of information.

What is missing, though, is an understanding of what data is useful for making sound business decisions in a particular application.

That’s why PlateSmart Technologies, pioneers of the original software-only automatic license plate recognition (LPR) solutions, and a Platinum ‘ASTORS’ Award Winner for the last Five Years, sees its mission as not just providing data, but providing its customers with the right kind and amount of data.

“For years, our tagline has been, ‘Insights Beyond the Plate’,” said Webb Wang, Chief Technology Officer, PlateSmart.

“That’s because reading a license plate — and the vehicle data that goes with it — serves no useful purpose unless that information provides some useful insights for the customer.”

“So many companies in the LPR space tout their ability to read plates under a variety of vehicle speeds and conditions. That’s great, of course.”

“But can they offer any recommendations for how that data applies to the customer? Not likely. And that’s where PlateSmart continues to excel.”

(Learn how the use of artificial intelligence technology is making it easier for law enforcement to identify suspicious vehicles. Courtesy of One America News Network and YouTube.)

Wang said that aligning vehicle data with customer goals is critical because different markets require different types of data for different reasons.

What is useful for one customer might be a waste of time and disk space for another.

“Consider law enforcement — the traditional application for LPR,” said Wang.

“Police need alphanumeric license plate and jurisdictional data delivered in real time to bounce against BOLOs and other law enforcement databases.”

“Directional data — which way the vehicle is traveling — is also useful in deploying officers to quickly and safely apprehend a suspect.”

“But can we know about a particular vehicle’s movements? For example, where does the vehicle drive the most? What are the routes the vehicle uses the most?”

“These types of insights go beyond the original understanding of the vehicle.”

“It requires massive computation about the vehicle’s time and location data – not an easy job given the terabytes of data involved, let alone providing such information within seconds.”

“But this is exactly the direction PlateSmart is taking: leveraging AI and deep learning as well as modern technology to offer our customers these insights in order to make good decisions.”

Web Wang, PlateSmart CTO
Web Wang, PlateSmart CTO

This kind of analysis is demanded by many markets, such as law enforcement, parking management, and college campuses, to name a few.

Furthermore, each market finds its unique benefit from vehicle information via a tailored analytics to provide specific insights to meet specific market needs.

“For example, a transportation customer might only need a fraction of the data provided in a law enforcement application while also seeking additional information,” Wang added.

“Transportation companies like to be able to compare tractor and trailer plates to ensure that drivers are leaving lots with the right loads. They want to bounce tractor plates against a list of authorized vehicles as a means of mitigating theft.”

“And transportation companies might also be interested in reading alphanumeric data that is not on a license plate, such as identifiers on the side of a shipping container.”

“For years, LPR companies were focused just on capturing the data reliably.”

“Today, we’ve reached a point where LPR technology has largely been perfected, which can be easily demonstrated with PlateSmart AI driven LPR solution.”

“The natural progression is to address the customer’s ultimate need, which is what insights about the vehicle the customer can obtain to make good business decisions.”

“That’s why PlateSmart’s focus is on helping customers understand what data they need and what they can actually do with information we can provide them.”

(In this PlateSmart webinar, the company discusses how ALPR and vehicle recognition can enhance airport security while also helping airports generate revenue. Courtesy of PlateSmart and YouTube.)

When a customer asks for more information about PlateSmart’s LPR solutions, the first order of business is to determine what the customer wants to do with the LPR data.

Applications range from law enforcement and security to customer service.

Casinos, for example, can use LPR to be notified when a high roller drives onto the property so that they can be prepared to greet that customer and provide them with an exceptional experience.

Retailers can use LPR as part of their curbside pickup operations, allowing them to be notified when a particular vehicle arrives onsite.

“Each of those applications is unique and requires a tailored approach to the LPR solution,” Wang said.

“We need to know what LPR data we will be required to deliver and how that data might trigger other actions, like alarms or text notifications.”

Part of what drives PlateSmart to customize its offering for various markets is the analytics it is able to provide.

“LPR data should be useful beyond its immediate use in identifying vehicles,” Wang said.

“Providing insights that can help companies make better business decisions improves the overall ROI of the solution.”

“Yes, we can help with short-term objectives, but that ability to affect a company’s bottom line over the long term is what drives us to continually customize our solutions for various industry verticals.”

“One of our recent projects helped a national trucking logistics company to be able to spot off-the-book truck dispatches, which resulted in significant cost savings.”

In addition to law enforcement, traffic, and transportation, PlateSmart is working on tailoring its solution to applications such as traffic planning and retail crime prevention.

That’s not to say, however, that PlateSmart doesn’t continue to innovate in making its LPR solutions best-in-class.

“The latest release of PlateSmart ARES® LPR software provides better vehicle recognition on much smaller plate images,” Wang said.

“This means more flexibility in camera placement and a wider depth of field for reading plates.”

Wang added that PlateSmart continues to drive the software’s ability to run on lower-cost computing platforms without a performance discount.

“Anything we can do to widen the field of computing platforms compatible with our software gives our customers flexibility in system topology,” he said.

“And the money they save on computing platforms could be used to upgrade cameras. In short, it improves our customers’ return on investment.”

platesmartPlateSmart ARES® was the original camera-agnostic software-only LPR solution, and continues to be compatible with virtually all video management systems (VMS) and IP cameras.

Designed to function as a stand-alone tool or integrate with third-party software and hardware, PlateSmart ARES provides near-real-time actionable vehicle intelligence for complete situational awareness.

The software offers true object recognition instead of simple optical character recognition (OCR), which allows it to read the plate as well as the state jurisdiction and vehicle make.

Not only has PlateSmart earned multiple industry awards for excellence in security technology, but it is the longest running LPR company/brand in the United States.

The company currently provides integrations with industry-leading VMS providers, such as Milestone Systems and Axis Communications, each of which have been recognized in their respective categories in American Security Today’s prestigious Annual Homeland Security Awards Program, and Axis Communications has Three Products nominated to compete in the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program.

Find out more about PlateSmart at

PlateSmart Technologies Nominated to Compete in Sixth ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program

2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program

American Security Today’s ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards program is today in its Sixth Year and continues to recognize the Outstanding Innovations of top firms and agencies in the Homeland Security and Public Safety fields.

The Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards is the preeminent U.S. Homeland Security Awards Program highlighting the most cutting-edge and forward-thinking security solutions coming onto the market today, to ensure our readers have the information they need to stay ahead of the competition, and keep our Nation safe – one facility, street, and city at a time.

Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Administer, David Pekoske
David Pekoske, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Administer

American Security Today is pleased to announce TSA Administrator  David Pekoske, will join the organization as a featured speaker at the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards Presentation Luncheon, on November 18, 2021 at ISC East in New York City.

“On the heels of an unprecedented global pandemic, continued unrest in our cities and potentially catastrophic cyberattacks on our nations critical infrastructure, the focus of the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Luncheon will be on the latest, state-of-the-art innovations that are driving investments in new public security and safety technologies and systems,” said AST Editorial and Managing Director Tammy Waitt.

“As a recognized expert in crisis management, strategic planning, innovation and aviation, surface transportation and maritime security, David Pekoske’s message highlighting his top priorities and challenges for the TSA based on his years of wide-ranging experience will be critical to our attendees internalizing the critical nature of these escalating challenges, and realizing innovative new approaches to meet them.”

The 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program is Proudly Sponsored by AMAROK and SIMS Software, along with Returning Premier Sponsors
ATI SystemsAttivo NetworksAutomatic Systems, and Reed Exhibitions.

Nominations are currently being accepted for the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards at

Comprehensive List of Categories Include:

Access Control/ Identification Personal/Protective Equipment Law Enforcement Counter Terrorism
Perimeter Barrier/ Deterrent System Interagency Interdiction Operation Cloud Computing/Storage Solution
Facial/IRIS Recognition Body Worn Video Product Cyber Security
Video Surveillance/VMS Mobile Technology Anti-Malware
Audio Analytics Disaster Preparedness ID Management
Thermal/Infrared Camera Mass Notification System Fire & Safety
Metal/Weapon Detection Rescue Operations Critical Infrastructure
License Plate Recognition Detection Products And Many Others!
COVID Innovations And Many Others!


Don’t see a Direct Hit for your Product, Agency or Organization?

The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the 2019–20 coronavirus outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) on 30 January 2020 and a pandemic on 11 March 2020. Local transmission of the disease has occurred across all fifty states in the America.

With the unprecedented occurrence of the COVID-19 pandemic, the focus of the safety and security industries has realized the need to increase innovations to address the daily growing challenges.

As such AST aims to make sure these firms and professionals are reflected in the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program, so we’d like to encourage you to submit appropriate categories recommendations and include COVID-19 Frontline Professionals in your Nominations to see that these Professionals, Facilities, and Vendors receive the Recognition they Deserve!

Submit your category recommendation for consideration to Michael Madsen, AST Publisher at:

Register for the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Luncheon Today

2019 'ASTORS' Awards Program Banquet Luncheon
2019 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program Banquet Luncheon

At ISC East 2021 you with the opportunity to interact with a broad array of security industry professionals.

ISC East works closely with other businesses in the security and public safety space to help bring together the Northeast’s largest security trade show each year.

In collaboration with premier sponsor SIA (Security Industry Association) and in partnership with ASIS NYC, ISC East is proud to work with and be supported by various associations, trade publications, charities, and more.

Therefore, the ISC audience of security dealers, installers, integrators, consultants, corporate, government and law enforcement/first responder practitioners will be joined by the ASIS NYC audience of major corporate managerial-through-director-level national and global security executives.

The combination of one-on-one conversations with the industry’s top innovators,  integrators and security executives, special events, high-quality education and training, and strong support from industry associations, will allow attendees to learn and evaluate solutions from leading security exhibitors and brands. 

The 2019 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program surpassed expectations with a record number of nominations received from industry leaders and government agencies, and drew over 200 attendees to the ‘ASTORS’ Awards Presentation Banquet – an exclusive gourmet luncheon and networking opportunity which filled to capacity, before having to turn away late registrants.

Your ‘ASTORS’ Awards Luncheon registration includes complimentary attendee access to ISC East – Thank take advantage of this exclusive luncheon opportunity to take a break from the show – Invite your team, guests, clients and show visitors to a lovely and affordable plated meal event in the heart of New York City, for  a fabulous networking opportunity!

Go to to secure your seat or reserve a table.

***Limited space available so Register Today. There will be no on-site registrations.

Why American Security Today?

The traditional security marketplace has long been covered by a host of publications putting forward the old school basics to what is Today – a fast changing security landscape.

The traditional security marketplace has long been covered by a host of publications putting forward the old school basics to what is Today – a fast changing security landscape.

American Security Today is uniquely focused on the broader Homeland Security & Public Safety marketplace with over 75,000 readers at the Federal, State and local levels of government as well as firms allied to government.

American Security Today brings forward a fresh compelling look and read with our customized digital publications that hold readers eyes throughout the story with cutting edge editorial that provides solutions to their challenges.

Harness the Power of the Web – with our 100% Mobile Friendly Publications

AST puts forward the Largest and Most Qualified Circulation in Government with Over 75,000 readers on the Federal, State and Local levels.
AST puts forward the Largest and Most Qualified Circulation in Government with Over 75,000 readers on the Federal, State and Local levels.

The AST Digital Publications is distributed to over 75,000 qualified government and homeland security professionals in federal, state and local levels.


AST Reaches both Private & Public Experts, essential to meeting these new challenges.

Today’s new generation of public safety and security experts need real-time knowledge to deal with domestic and international terrorism, lone wolf attacks, unprecedented urban violence, shifts in society, culture and media bias – making it increasingly difficult for Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, First Responders, Military and Private Security Professionals to implement coordinated security measures to ensure national security and improve public safety.

American Security Today

These experts are from Government at the federal, state and local level as well as from private firms allied to government.

AST provides a full plate of topics in our AST Monthly Magazine Editions, AST Website and AST Daily News Alerts, covering 23 Vital Sectors such as Access Control, Perimeter Protection, Video Surveillance/Analytics, Airport Security, Border Security, CBRNE Detection, Border Security, Ports, Cybersecurity, Networking Security, Encryption, Law Enforcement, First Responders, Campus Security, Security Services, Corporate Facilities, and Emergency Response among others.

AST has Expanded readership into integral Critical Infrastructure audiences such as Protection of Nuclear Facilities, Water Plants & Dams, Bridges & Tunnels, and other potential targets of terrorism.

Other areas of concern include Transportation Hubs, Public Assemblies, Government Facilities, Sporting & Concert Stadiums, our Nation’s Schools & Universities, and Commercial Business Destinations – all enticing targets due to the large number of persons and resources clustered together.

To learn more about the 2020 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Award Winners solutions, Check Out the New 2020 ‘ASTORS’ CHAMPIONS Edition Fully Interactive Magazine – the Best Products of 2020 ‘A Year in Review’.

The Annual CHAMPIONS edition includes a review of the ‘ASTORS’ Award Winning products and programs, highlighting key details on many of the winning firms products and services, includes video interviews and more.

It is your Go-To source throughout the year for ‘The Best of 2020 Products and Services‘ endorsed by American Security Today, and can satisfy your agency’s and organization’s most pressing Homeland Security and Public Safety needs.

From Physical Security (Access Control, Critical Infrastructure, Perimeter Protection and Video Surveillance Cameras and Video Management Systems), to IT Security (Cybersecurity, Encryption, Data Storage, Anti-Malware and Networking Security – Just to name a few), the 2020 ‘ASTORS’ CHAMPIONS EDITION has what you need to Detect, Delay, Respond to, and Mitigate today’s real-time threats in our constantly evolving security landscape.

It also includes featured guest editorial pieces from some of the security industry’s most respected leaders, and recognized firms in the 2020 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program.

  • For a complete list of 2020 ‘ASTORS’ Award Winners, click here.

For more information on All Things American Security Today, and the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program, please contact Michael Madsen, AST Publisher at

AST strives to meet a 3 STAR trustworthiness rating, based on the following criteria:

  • Provides named sources
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