City Official Claims Security Integrator Is a Thief

By: Carlton Purvis, Published on Nov 01, 2013

City gets $200,000 grant for cameras. City hires integrator to procure and install system. Sounds common enough except when it blows up with arrests and allegations. Who's right? The city official or the integrator?

In this note, we share our findings from reviewing the contracting documents and speaking with the integrator.

Background

What is not in dispute is that this Pennsylvania city awarded a 50 camera surveillance system project to an integrator in 2012. From the city contracting documents, here are the main components selected / purchased:

The Controversy

City councilman Joe Bartello [link no longer available], who originally voted against installing the cameras and has campaigned against them, has brought up concerns that the integrator, Aaron Nigro of Global Security Tactics, is somehow trying to pull something over [link no longer available] on the city. He has questioned why they gave the bid to Nigro, where the cameras are going and even questions how many cameras the city bought from Nigro. The latter question can be answered by the contracting documents. The city says it gave the project to Nigro because it was the best deal they could get. 

The local newspaper also notes that Nigro was arrested earlier this year for felony theft after signing for a UPS package [link no longer available]. It is not clear what exactly happened in that incident, but Nigro says there was a mix-up with a former business partner over a contract and that questions being raised now about the system have political motivations. Bartello is currently running for mayor. 

"He wants to dismantle the system, but everyone else wants to keep it," Nigro claims. 

The Contract Analyzed

IPVM sees nothing wrong with the contract. The products selected are credible (Mobotix) and the pricing is fair (markups are fairly modest). Beyond that, the labor charges being disputed are fairly low for what one would expect for a city project. Nigro is charging $2500 per month for installation, his hotel for the three months he's been in Sunbury working on the project and to cover his gas. While surveillance professionals might dispute the choice of Mobotix over more open offerings, we find no indicators of fraud or games from the integrator.

The locations of the cameras are not included in the contract, but it seems a city councilman should be able to access those documents through the same process we can access them, using a public records request. In fact, in some places city officials can bypass the process and ask the documents be provided to them directly. 

Why Do They Need All These Cameras?

The scandal here is that Sunbury, a city of 9,835, literally in the middle of nowhere, got a $200,000 U.S. Department of Justice grant for 50 high end professional cameras. At less than 10,000 people, it's more like a village than a modern city. What's even more perplexing is that the grant was provided to the city to install 200 cameras [link no longer available] total. There is no real terrorism risk and with so few people and such modest crime risks, spending so much is likely wasteful.

Comments (4) : Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

Embattled $400 Million China Funded Philippines Surveillance System Proceeds on Jun 13, 2019
An embattled 12,000 camera surveillance system project that will cost ~$400 million will proceed. The project contract was awarded, had its...
Proxy Access Control Tested on May 09, 2019
Silicon Valley Access Startup Proxy raised $13.6 Million in May 2019, focusing on mobile physical access control. Beyond the fund raising, Proxy...
Bezos-Funded Deep Sentinel Tested on Mar 28, 2019
Backed by Jeff Bezos, the Silicon Valley startup, Deep Sentinel, has declared: No One Does Home Security Like We Do Our Surveillance Team has...
No GDPR Penalties For UK Swann 'Spying Hack' on Nov 20, 2018
The UK’s data protection agency has closed its investigation into Infinova-owned Swann Security UK, the ICO confirmed to IPVM, deciding to take “no...
Solar-Powered, Smart-Phone-Based Access Kit (VIZPin) Examined on Nov 02, 2018
Cloud-based access control company VIZPin is releasing a solar-powered and smart phone based access control system for gates and other remote...
Amazon Echo Look Fashion Camera Tested on Oct 27, 2017
Can deep learning make you look good? That is what Amazon's Echo Look, a "Hands Free Camera and Style Assistant", claims to do. We bought this...
Exacq Unbreaks Avigilon Integration on Oct 18, 2017
For nearly 4 years, Exacq had broken and effectively blocked use with Avigilon cameras, as IPVM reported in January 2014. Now, Exacq has...
Long Time Industry Exec Leads New Security Franchise Offering on Oct 12, 2017
John Nemerofsky [link no longer available] previously built and sold a $150 million dollar integration business, and then was VP of Niscayah from...
Washington DC MPD's Surveillance Equipment on Feb 21, 2017
The Washington DC Metropolitan Police Department's surveillance system was hacked in January 2017. Two immediate questions were: Whose...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Hikvision Illicitly Uses Back To The Future In Marketing on Jul 03, 2020
NBCUniversal told IPVM that Hikvision UK's ongoing coronavirus marketing campaign using NBCUniversal's assets was not allowed. Hikvision mass...
Verkada: "IPVM Should Never Be Your Source of News" on Jul 02, 2020
Verkada was unhappy with IPVM's recent coverage declaring that reading IPVM is 'not a good look' and that 'IPVM should never be your source of...
Vintra Presents FulcrumAI Face Recognition on Jul 02, 2020
Vintra presented its FulcrumAI face recognition and mask detection offering at the May 2020 IPVM Startups show. Inside this report: A...
Uniview Wrist Temperature Reader Tested on Jul 02, 2020
Uniview is promoting measuring wrist temperatures whereas most others are just offering forehead or inner canthus measurements. But how well does...
Dahua USA Admits Thermal Solutions "Qualify As Medical Devices" on Jul 02, 2020
Dahua USA has issued a press release admitting a controversial point in the industry but an obvious one to the US FDA, that the thermal temperature...
Access Control Online Show - July 2020 - With 40+ Manufacturers - Register Now on Jul 01, 2020
IPVM is excited to announce our July 2020 Access Control Show. With 40+ companies presenting across 4 days, this is a unique opportunity to hear...
Hanwha Face Mask Detection Tested on Jul 01, 2020
Face mask detection or, more specifically lack-of-face-mask detection, is an expanding offering in the midst of coronavirus. Hanwha in partnership...
UK Government Says Fever Cameras "Unsuitable" on Jul 01, 2020
The UK government's medical device regulator, MHRA, told IPVM that fever-seeking thermal cameras are "unsuitable for this purpose" and recommends...
Camera Course Summer 2020 on Jun 30, 2020
This is the only independent surveillance camera course, based on in-depth product and technology testing. Lots of manufacturer training...
Worst Over But Integrators Still Dealing With Coronavirus Problems (June Statistics) on Jun 30, 2020
While numbers of integrators very impacted by Coronavirus continue to drop, most are still moderately dealing with the pandemic's problems, June...