Shooter Detection Systems in ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards

The Active Shooter Problem and the Gunshot Detection Solution

One of the key findings from the comprehensive FBI study examining some of the most high-profile active shooter incidents from 2000-2013 was that most of these incidents happen in everyday locations such as schools, businesses open to pedestrian traffic, and workplaces.

2014 and 2015 had the highest active shooter incidents ever in a two-year period in the United States.

Data from the Gun Violence Archive shows that the number of mass shootings is trending upwards consistently each year.

As of June 2017, the U.S. already experienced 54% more mass shootings in 2017 than it did in 2014.

(Guardian Indoor Active Shooter Detection System acts on real-time gunshot detection and alerting protocols, reducing response time and saving lives in the event of an active shooter incident. Courtesy of Shooter Detection Systems and YouTube)

It is an unfortunate fact that mass shootings by lone wolf or terror attacks are a reality of modern life around the world.

The goal of these attacks is to do as much damage to as many people as quickly as possible.

According to the ALICE Training Institute, most active shooter cases last just five to seven minutes with a person killed every 5-15 seconds.

Considering it typically takes 3-5 minutes before someone dials 9-1-1, the results of an uninterrupted active shooter is extremely devastating in a very brief period.

Given the rapid devastation an active shooter causes, one of the most important strategies to employ when building an active shooter response plan is a mechanism for immediate, factual recognition of gunshots and simultaneous alerting to a shooting in progress to reduce response time and save lives.

Security industry leaders and Boston-area companies join forces to mitigate risk in active shooter incidents by integrating gunshot detection technology with critical event management
Shooter Detection System works with security industry leading companies to mitigate risk in active shooter incidents by integrating gunshot detection technology with critical event management

The second key factor for both first responders and those directly affected by the threat is arming them with immediate, dependable, and actionable information.

Instant notification of where shots were fired, a description of the shooter, and the shooter’s direction offers the situational awareness necessary to make lifesaving decisions in the face of chaos.

For Law Enforcement this allows for faster, informed response to swiftly respond and mitigate the threat, taking time away from the shooter.

This information is equally important for building occupants so they can make the best decisions possible to save their own lives.

Shooter Detection Systems (SDS) has an automated, dependable solution to address both key problems facing active shooter response in the Guardian Indoor Active Shooter Detection System.

Guardian simultaneously detects gunfire and immediately relays this information via floor plan map with shot location, text, e-mail, and other notification pathways directly to first responders and building occupants, with no human interpretation needed and with zero false alerts.

With security systems integration, the Guardian System calls up surveillance cameras in the incident area, starts lock-down procedures, sends mass notification alerts to desktops and mobile devices, and provides immediate notification to Law Enforcement.

With automated actions tied to accurate gunshot detection alerts from the Guardian system, we remove the “human factor” so that nothing is left to interpretation and costly delays can be avoided.

Technology History and Market Adoption

SDS is comprised of a targeted team of business, tactical and multi-disciplinary systems engineering experts who collectively have over 40 years of experience with acoustic gunshot detection systems that were developed for military applications.

While working at a major defense contractor, the SDS team handled the successful production and delivery of over 10,000 gunshot detection systems to Iraq and Afghanistan.

As a result of sniper attacks on the U.S. power grid, these same systems have been deployed to protect critical infrastructure and mitigate disaster in the event of crippling power loss by a sniper attack.

Understanding the immediate need for technology to address the active shooter threat, the team began investigating how their experience designing acoustic detection technology could be applied indoors, offering a solution to this difficult and emerging problem.

With a nation on edge in fear of the active shooter, false alerts and uninformed, panicked evacuations based on false alerts would not be tolerated.

When the difficulties in applying acoustic technology in an indoor environment were examined and thoroughly tested, the acoustic technology alone was found to have an unacceptable false alert rate.

Even with the robust capabilities of the outdoor system, which detects gunshots and filters out loud noises on vehicles in the battlefield and even on helicopters, an acoustics-only approach for indoor was insufficient.

The team’s efforts resulted in the Guardian System, incorporating the proven military acoustic technology fine-tuned for indoor gunshot acoustic signatures with infrared gunfire flash detection to produce the world’s highest performing, fully automatic, and most accurate indoor gunshot detection technology available.

The Guardian Sensor validates an acoustic bang by looking for infrared flash, creating the only zero false alert solution available in the marketplace.
The Guardian Sensor validates an acoustic bang by looking for infrared flash, creating the only zero false alert solution available in the marketplace.

The Guardian sensor’s superior acoustic technology in this dual modality offers the highest rate of detection while bringing the number of false alerts to zero.

Through its unique hardware design, Guardian is easily installed into existing building infrastructures through flush wall/ceiling mount or surface mount for impenetrable structures and the system configuration is fully scalable to the area of coverage desired.

The Guardian System was built with security systems integration in mind, offering organizations flexible notification options from the smallest school notifying local law enforcement to the largest enterprise customer notifying global security teams immediately of a shooting event.

SDS has key strategic partnerships with Tyco Security Products, Johnson Controls, Genetec, Everbridge, and Avigilon and proven, fielded integrations with leading-edge security systems such as VMS, access control, and mass notification, and simple contact integrations for zone alerting to alarm panels and automated alerts to digital security radios.

(See how the Guardian Indoor Active Shooter Detection System Integrates with Software House C•CURE 9000 to Provide Critical Security Against the Active Shooter. Courtesy of Tyco Security Products and YouTube)

Guardian is the most widely installed indoor gunshot detection system available in the market.

SDS is the only gunshot detection provider that has indoor gunshot detection installations and proven technology integrations in use at customer sites in airports, schools, Fortune 500 corporations, museums, municipal buildings, court systems, major utilities, manufacturing plants, luxury mixed-use property management sites, and many other government and private buildings.

True to SDS’ reputation as the world leader in gunshot detection technology, The Guardian Indoor Active Shooter Detection System is the only gunshot detection solution to be SAFETY Act Certified by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.


Once an active shooter threat is perceived or recognized, precious seconds are lost when decisions must be made in the face of a terrifying situation.

Without gunshot detection to effectively automate alerts and take other integrated security actions, even the best active shooter response plans require human interpretation of gunshots, being in direct proximity to the threat, or reacting to someone reporting “shots fired.”

Without gunshot detection, someone must act to initiate the steps practiced in active shooter training.

In the Washington Navy Yard shooting’s after-action report, they concluded that the security guard in the video room did not notify anyone because he froze and didn’t know what to do, even though he was well trained.

This is not an uncommon human response for even the best trained first responders.

The reality is that entrusting panic buttons, 9-1-1, lockdown procedures, video surveillance and other security actions to start off even the best active shooter preparedness plan is not enough.

The Guardian Indoor Active Shooter Detection System is a solution that can set these practices in motion and save lives when seconds count.

Product HighlightsF-966-A SAFETY ACT Certification Mark 

  • SAFETY Act Certified by D.H.S.
  • Dual Factor Authentication – Zero False Alerts
  • Fastest gunshot reporting product available – Under one second
  • Floor plan map of facility with instant shot location information
  • Easily integrated into any network using standard Power-Over-Ethernet
  • Integrated with leading-edge security systems: VMS, Access Control, Mass Notification, Mobile Applications, Digital Radios, Alarm Panels, Contact Integrations
  • Requires extremely low network bandwidth
  • Less than 1 watt power draw
  • Fits into standard 4-inch electrical box
  • Flush mounted in ceiling or wall
  • Surface mount for concrete/brick structures
  • Features simulation and training modes
  • Made in the U.S.A.

Shooter Detection in 2017 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards Program

The 2017 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards Program, is organized to recognize the most distinguished vendors of Physical, IT, Port Security, Law Enforcement, First Responders, (Fire, EMT, Military, Support Services Vets, SBA, Medical Tech) as well as the Federal, State, County and Municipal Government Agencies – to acknowledge their outstanding efforts to ‘Keep our Nation Secure, One City at a Time.’

As an ‘ASTORS’ competitor, the Guardian Indoor Active Shooter Detection System will be competing against the Industry’s Leading Providers of Gunshot Detection Solutions.

American Security Today will be holding the 2017 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Presentation Luncheon at 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m, Wednesday, November 15th at ISC East, the Northeast’s largest security industry event, in the Jacob Javits Exhibition Center in New York City.

At ISC East you will have the chance to meet with technical reps from over 225 leading brands in the security industry, allowing you to find out about new products and stay ahead of the competition.

Encompassing everything from Video Surveillance and Access Control to Smart Home Technologies and Unmanned Security, you’re sure to find products and services that will benefit your company and clients.

ASTORS HSA 2017Good luck to Shooter Detection Systems on becoming a Winner of the 2017 American Security Today’s Homeland Security Awards Program!

To learn more about the Guardian Indoor Active Shooter Detection System please visit

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