Jul 9

Costly Impact of Cyber Attacks

By |2021-07-09T08:06:06-08:00July 9th, 2021|government, Industry News, Local Government, State Government, Technology Innovations|0 Comments

Cyber-attacks and threats seem to be dominating the news lately as hackers are finding ways to exploit security weaknesses in governments, companies, healthcare organizations, and personal home devices. The new breed of attacks is now taking data and entire systems down and demanding ransom payments in the tens of millions of dollars.

According to the U.S. Government’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Assurance Agency (CISA): Ransomware is an ever-evolving form of malware designed to encrypt files on a device, rendering any files and the systems that rely on them unusable. Malicious actors then demand ransom in exchange for decryption. Ransomware actors often target and threaten to sell or leak exfiltrated data or authentication information if the ransom is not paid.

The impact of these attacks will quickly have an outsized impact on not only the entity attacked, but on consumers who will bear the brunt of the cost.

AV Capture

Cyber Security

Ransomware attacks were up 150% in 2020, and growing even faster in 2021, and the financial amount companies paid to hackers grew by 300%, according to Harvard Business Review.

This sudden increase has an undeniable connection to the increase in employees working remotely last year. The pandemic gave hacker groups the perfect opportunity to breach sensitive data because most businesses were not prepared to require employees to install the proper security protections at their home office.

It is estimated that there are between 20 and 30 billion Internet-connected devices which include computers, tablets, smartphones, wireless Internet, and other “smart” devices, like televisions, home security cameras, and even refrigerators. More devices mean more avenues for attack by hackers.

Already in 2021, we’ve seen a dramatic increase in this activity, with high-profile ransom attacks against critical infrastructure, private companies, and municipalities grabbing headlines almost daily.

Recently the City of Tulsa discovered some servers were actively communicating with a known threat site and a ransomware attack was initiated on several City systems. According to the city’s website, “A cybersecurity incident response team was assembled to assess the threat and disconnected the affected servers. The team immediately began isolating the affected systems and the attack moved quickly through the network, prompting the team to shut down all services to halt the attack.”

The attack on the City of Tulsa’s network caused a massive disruption in many city’s services and was costly to resolve.

“We have multiple computers all linked together. We’re talking about hundreds if not thousands of different types of connections that the city is looking into right now,” Captain Richard Meulenberg said as he explained the situation from the Tulsa Police Department.

When a government entity is hacked it has the potential to undermine the security of thousands of systems, networks, and services. Government hacking often depends on exploiting vulnerabilities in systems with the objective to create chaos or more deviously, it could have a surveillance objective. Government hacking may also involve manipulating people to interfere with their own systems. These techniques prey on user trust, the loss of which can undermine the security of systems and the internet.

The reality is most of the cyber-attacks are done by Governments and most were launched against other governments to demonstrating a state’s capabilities rather than causing real disruption. Now that’s changed. The real damage is being down and massive resources are being used to prevent attacks, repair damages, and claw back ransom payments.

Non-government entities have also been hacked more often and none bigger than the breach of Colonial Pipeline in late April.  The Colonial Pipeline attack made such an impact because the pipeline is an important part of the national critical infrastructure system. Taking the system down disrupted gas supplies all along the East Coast of the United States, causing chaos and panic.

This attack hit close to home for many consumers and was particularly dangerous because consumers started to panic and ignored safety precautions. After the chaos receded, government officials confirmed that Colonial Pipeline’s cybersecurity measures were not up to par and may have been prevented if stronger protection was in place.

Cybersecurity, which began in the early 1970s, has always been tied to technological advancements.

For AV Capture All, we take security very seriously and we built our Legislative and Judicial Solution meeting management platforms from the ground up with security in mind.

Mar 10

Meeting Management Made Easy

By |2021-03-10T15:07:32-08:00March 10th, 2021|City Clerks, Court hearings, government, Industry News, judicial, Live Streamng, Local Government|0 Comments

If we learned one thing from 2020 it’s how hard it is to manage online virtual meetings. Finding the right platform that meets all your meeting needs and is affordable was almost impossible. Many found that no one platform had all the features they needed.

This is especially true for local governments and City Councils. The business of governing couldn’t stop when COVID19 changed everything. We heard from our customers and got to work creating a platform that makes your meeting management easier, more efficient and all-in-one.

AV Capture All is excited to announce new products and services to enhance your Meeting Management solution.

Our new Agenda Builder app will bring more efficiency to your meeting management process.  Some features include:

  • Quick and easy creation of Agendas, Packets & Minutes
  • Fully customizable Templates
  • Approval tracking for individual Agenda Items with private notes
  • Related documents associated with Agenda Items
  • One-click publishing
  • Instant searchability
  • Integration with AV Capture recording & streaming software

We’re also excited to announce two new servicesRecorded Media Transcription with Closed Captioning & Live (Real-Time) Transcription with Closed Captioning.  Our new services will enhance the experience for hearing impaired constituents.  Some features of these services include:

Recorded Media CC

  • Automatic speech-to-text transcription within minutes of Publishing
  • Closed Captions displayed in the media player during playback
  • Transcript file download available

Live Streaming CC

  • Speech-to-text transcription in real-time
  • Closed Captions displayed in the media player during the live stream
  • Advanced algorithms provide >98% accuracy in real-time

The Agenda Builder app and both Closed Captioning services are all included in our Premium subscription.  They can also be purchased separately.

Whether your meetings are virtual, in-person, or a combination of both, the AV Capture Meeting Management solution can be easily integrated with any videoconferencing platform to easily capture, manage, and share your meetings online.

CLICK HERE to watch video demo: AVCAMeetingManagement-YouTube

To schedule a live demo, please click: Schedule a Demo

Or, just give us a call.  We’d love to hear from you anytime

Jan 6

For Women, Representation Matters

By |2021-01-06T12:11:21-08:00January 6th, 2021|City Clerks, government, Industry News, Local Government, State Government|0 Comments

As we look toward January 20, 2021, this country will have the first woman elected to the second-highest job in this country. Gender is not the only milestone for Kamala Harris, but she is among a demographic that is making big gains in local and federal government.

Kamala Harris

In 1917, Jeannette Rankin of Montana, was the first woman elected to Congress. Rankin had campaigned as a progressive in 1916, pledging to work for a constitutional woman suffrage amendment and emphasizing social welfare issues.

One hundred and three years later, a record-breaking number of women have been sworn in to Congress this week, including a historic number of women of color. There are now 144 women members of Congress, surpassing the previous record of 127. Of these lawmakers, 52 are women of color, which builds on the prior record of 48. Women comprise roughly 27% of all lawmakers, up from about 24% in 2019.

The harbinger of this might be the 2017 Women’s March that set the stage for the historic victories in state and local races that women in 2018, especially minority and LGBTQ women, scored. Numerous large cities now have a woman serving as mayor for the first time.

Polls have shown that women have become much more engaged in politics since the Trump inauguration, and that’s a good thing.

As of 2020, women make up 51% of the U.S. population but only account for 23% of Congress, according to the Center for American Women and Politics. Women make up 20% of mayors of cities with a population over 30,000 and 19% of the 100 largest cities in the United States.

First steps

While progress has been made, women continue to face barriers to getting elected to an office such as financial means and family responsibilities which make full participation in all levels of government more challenging.  For a woman to rise in the ranks in the federal government, which can take decades, she would need to enter Congress around 30 years old. And because of the incredible cost of a campaign, she would have to be in politics for several years before that to be able to raise the necessary campaign funds to compete. Many of the earliest women in Congress were independently wealthy and funded their own campaigns but none, however, became committee chairs.

Representation Matters

Women’s political and socio-economic status improves when women become more involved in decision making and policy development at all levels of governance. However, women are underrepresented in most elected and appointed positions in local government in the United States.

Women are also underrepresented in important appointed positions in local governments, with little evidence of improvement over the last three decades. Of these, the city manager position stands out as particularly problematic.

In 1981 women were 3% of city managers; this number increased to 11% of city managers in 1986. But in 1999, the share was still 11% and had increased to only 13% by 2014.

Chief administrative officers (CAOs) follow similar patterns: While the share has increased dramatically from 1.3% in 1974 to 14.4% in 2012–2013, women are far from parity in the position. While earlier work addressed women’s representation in the county supervisor position, which have broad powers and control local resources, we know almost nothing currently about women’s representation in these positions. Research on women in public service more generally argues that women face particularly high barriers when seeking positions higher up in the hierarchy.

For decades, the school board was the only option for women to join positions that held power. Women make up approximately 44% of school board members, which is far higher than any other major group of political leaders. That’s changing.

In 2018, more women were elected to Congress than at any time in our history.

It is no surprise that research on women in elected office is lacking. But comparative research finds that in cities with higher levels of incomes, education, and women in the workforce, have higher levels of women in elected office.


“After this election season, the face of our politics will be changed for the betterment of our communities and our government,” said Higher Heights CEO Glynda Carr, in a statement. “Make no mistake: Black women’s energy, work and commitment to building a true democracy is continuing to diversify and improve America’s leadership.”

The new class of lawmakers this year also includes multiple notable firsts: Former Tacoma, Washington, Mayor Marilyn Strickland is the first Black and Korean woman elected to the House, and organizer Cori Bush is the first Black woman Missouri has elected to Congress. Strickland as well as California’s Michelle Steel and Young Kim are the first Korean American women that have been elected to the House.

In a shift that was hard to predict even a few years ago is how much influence Black women would have n the last few election cycles. This voting bloc pushed Joe Biden, the Democrat’s candidate for President, to name a black woman to the ticket.

Black women’s overwhelming support for the Biden-Harris ticket—an estimated 90%—is the reflection of a decade of on the ground activism. Inspired by Harris’s nomination and election, women will continue to pursue their interests and ensure that their voices are heard.

For Black women, their voices have been getting louder and louder over the years. In 2008 and ’12, Black women voted at the highest rate of any race and gender subgroup. Their votes—96% of them—played no small part in the reelection of President Barack Obama in 2012.

And in 2020, this voting bloc elected the first Black woman to be the Vice President of the United States. An accomplishment that now makes possible the likelihood of a woman being elected President.

Nov 11

Holiday Travel Concerns This Year

By |2020-12-09T11:49:20-08:00November 11th, 2020|government, Industry News, Local Government, State Government, Uncategorized|0 Comments

As we face the holidays and the last few months of 2020, a year most of us are happy to see go, travel is on everyone’s mind.

We are facing a strange combination of Pandemic fatigue, fear of travel, and cities with travel quarantines and gathering restrictions in place. There are still many unknowns right now as many cities are experiencing a surge of COVID-19 cases.

For the week starting November 9, 2020, the number of scheduled flights worldwide was down by 46.5% compared to the week of November 11, 2019. However, some airlines are seeing an increase of flights being book and the middle seat being released to book, limiting social distancing options.

But a majority of Americans are not planning to travel this holiday season. According to Destination Analysts, a market research firm, their recent Coronavirus Travel Sentiment Index Study, a weekly survey of 1,200 Americans, found that only 28 percent expected to travel for the holidays, including both Thanksgiving and Christmas. In the same survey, 53 percent said they had traveled for the holidays last year.

Adding to the uncertainty, many of the largest cities, including most of the Northeast, still have travel quarantines in place or are planning one with the recent spike in cases. New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio has even urged residents not to travel out of state for the holidays for fear of inviting a wave of coronavirus when they return home.  In San Francisco and the surrounding area, city and health officials recommend gathering outside which will help to significantly reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission. They’re advising no more than three households participate with a time limit of up to two hours per gathering.

Pandemic fatigue

Airlines have been one of the hardest-hit industries during the pandemic. Flight capacity has been steadily growing over the past month. Southwest Airlines, which has held middle seats open during the pandemic, recently announced it would make all seats available for flights beginning Dec. 1.

Still, scoring a seat without a neighbor sharing your armrest is getting harder, and travelers should prepare for more crowded planes.

In April, $25 billion in payroll grants plus a similar sum in low-interest loans went to the airline industry. Many Americans don’t think the airlines should receive any more taxpayer money. In the years before the pandemic, partly thanks to weak antitrust enforcement, airlines made massive profits. Since 2015, the four major carriers (American, Delta, United, and Southwest) had the best years the industry has ever seen.

Despite that, and the carriers desire to preserve capital for a rainy day, the big carriers paid $42 billion into stock repurchases in the hope of improving their share prices. That was more than the total of their free cash flow — the cash they generated after paying interest, taxes, and maintenance.

This hasn’t generated much sympathy for their hardships now and taxpayers aren’t keen on another bailout that would reward the carriers for egregious overcompensation and share buybacks.

American Airlines, the biggest carrier, poured nearly $13 billion into stock repurchases despite having negative free cash flow. The companies also resorted to massive borrowing, increasing their debt on average by 56% from 2014 to 2019. American’s debt soared from $18 billion to $33 billion.

Airfares for domestic flights in the second quarter dropped an average of 26% from the previous year, according to data from the Department of Transportation, released on a three-month delay and processed by airline analytics firm Cirium. That reduction came as travel demand fell as much as 97% over 2019 levels, before gradually improving to be down about 75%.

Average domestic fares at American Airlines were down 26%, while Delta cut fares 14%. United had one of the smallest reductions, down just 10% over 2019, while Southwest slashed fares by 25%.

Is the Air Better Up in the Air

Air quality inside the plane cabin has always been a concern. And now even more so. According to Airlines for America, the industry’s primary lobbying group that represents major carriers like Delta, American, United, and Southwest, “Onboard, all A4A carriers have aircraft equipped with HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filtration systems and all members comply with or exceed CDC guidance.”

This is reinforced by the International Air Transport Association, the industry’s global trade organization. “The risk of catching an infection on an aircraft is typically lower than in a shopping center or office environment,” says the spokesperson for IATA.

However, not all airplanes in U.S. fleets are HEPA-equipped, some of American Airlines’ regional aircraft, for instance, do not have the filters, so check each airline before booking.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is urging people to consider modifying holiday plans to reduce the spread of COVID-19 to keep friends, families, and communities healthy and safe. For more information about holiday travel from the CDC, click here

Whatever your holiday plans are, being mindful of your surroundings, wear your mask, wash your hands often, pack a lot of hand sanitizers and maintain social distancing as much as possible.

Happy Holidays from all of us at AV Capture All

Jun 10

Necessity is the Mother of Invention

By |2020-06-10T09:21:01-08:00June 10th, 2020|City Clerks, Court hearings, Industry News, judicial, Live Streamng, Technology Innovations|0 Comments

Whenever a business is faced with a new critical issue that affects their ability to run properly, they quickly adapt and create fixes to address the issue. The same can be said for local governments. When faced with the shutdown because of the ongoing health crisis, local governments had to find ways to keep their city running and citizens’ lives and businesses running.

In Utah, they quickly adapted digital solutions which allowed them to continue vital services, even while impacted and sheltering-in-place themselves. Almost immediately, residents were able to access these much-needed government services which allowed them to keep their business and lives running.

The State of Utah created an eSign solution using Adobe solutions for teleworking. The state touted the value of going 100% paperless and how easy it is to handle high volumes of contracts and other approval processes in a teleworking environment.

This provided a safety measure for staff and citizens. Not only has eSign enabled the State of Utah to effectively respond in the current emergencies, it has also placed them in a better position to ensure efficiency and business continuity in the long term.

Technology and Local Government

In Baltimore, Md, the City Council is planning 50 hours of virtual hearings to address current issues so citizens can stay informed and safe.

In heavily rural states, connectivity became an immediate issue when schools closed. Mississippi is now in a “broadband revolution” as the state Legislature fast-tracked the Mississippi Broadband Enabling Act that passed in 2019.

In Waukesha County, Wisconsin, setting up council meetings to address all the issues could take weeks if not months. The process usually involved setting up a big meeting so that all the review entities can make recommendations without conflicting with each other.

But now, things have changed and some want it to permanent. Developers are sending digital files of all their plans, which are then displayed and reviewed during video conferences. This was designed initially as a workaround, with employees of the suburban Milwaukee region scattered by the coronavirus, but now this more efficient way of holding meetings will become standard.

“We will not go back,” says Dale Shaver, director of parks and land use for Waukesha County. “This has changed the way we work forever.”

Despite governments long resisting remote work, the outcome now has been shown to work well, of course after a few bumps in the road in the beginning. Most feel this might be a permanent change in how they do business — or at least certain types of business. Depending on adoption levels, it might also allow them to save a good amount of money on leased space.

In Kansas, the unexpected circumstances of the pandemic has allowed the state to “dust off our telework policy long term,” says DeAngela Burns-Wallace, secretary of the state Department of Administration. “For those employees who are delivering services effectively remotely, then we want to keep them there.”

The metric to judge the success of these new ways of running government can be tricky to assess. Many managers aren’t sure what metrics to use when people are working remotely. In Philadelphia’s Department of Planning and Development, John Mondlak, deputy director for development services, believes he has a pretty simple way of keeping track. “The goal for me is to make sure it’s all getting done,” he says.

At AV Capture All, we know what challenges local governments face. With AV Capture All meeting management solutions, we make it easy for local Governments to keep constituents informed and engaged. Our Live-Streaming solutions are secure and easy to use and let’s local governments stay engaged with the public during this unprecedented time.

AV Capture– Legislative Solution is used to record Audio and Video while integrating Agendas, Minutes, and Related Documents. The document content is synchronized with the Audio/Video stream, then indexed and immediately searchable when published online. Once published, staff and citizens can view any part of the Audio/Video-on-demand, while following along with the synchronized Agenda, Minutes and Related Documents. Live Streaming is also integrated into the platform to allow staff and citizens who cannot attend the meeting in-person to view online from home.

AV Capture All is here to ensure the gears of government continue to work and the public is informed.

Click here to Contact us TODAY for a Demo.

May 27

Local Governments Brace for Revenue Shortfall

By |2020-05-27T11:13:42-08:00May 27th, 2020|City Clerks, Court hearings, Industry News, judicial, Live Streamng, Technology Innovations|0 Comments

The US has a wide range of local governments that include cities, counties, townships, towns, villages, boroughs, school districts, public libraries. These entities need financial help, just like all businesses do, to prevent worker furloughs or layoffs.

Local government employees, like many in the country, are concerned about keeping their job. Local governments employ 14.5 million people, including the overwhelming majority of first responders and teachers who are the most needed now to respond to the public health crisis and bring the country out of the economic crisis it now faces.

The jobs and pay of nearly half a million firefighters, 900,000 police officers, 1 million hospital and health care workers, and more than 5 million teachers who work in local governments are on the line if there is no federal fiscal intervention.

The need for federal aid to local governments will also help keep local businesses in business and the public informed. Without federal assistance, local governments will have to reduce the assistance they are providing to constituents to cope with the effects of the pandemic.

Normal government services provided to their citizens, including police and fire protection, health care services, and the educational work of teachers and librarians, will have to be reduced or cut altogether. In terms of a recession that the country is facing, furloughs, layoffs, and spending cuts will reduce consumer spending and exacerbate the recession.

Local governments are providing massive resources and support for coping with the coronavirus crisis, like testing for the virus. Hospitals, health departments, other health providers, first responders, and emergency medical technicians cannot continue without financial support from the federal government.

Because of closures to businesses, parks, and other services, local governments are suffering huge revenue losses. For example, sales tax revenues are dropping as businesses close and consumers stay at home. In a typical year, local governments receive roughly 35% to 40% of revenue through intergovernmental transfers, the vast majority of it coming from state governments that now face budget crises of their own. This will lead to further budgetary shortfalls for localities.

How much will your city be impacted?

Counties with populations between 50,000 and 500,000 will lose more than $30 billion in revenue. Counties with populations under 50,000 could lose about $10 billion in revenue and face another $10 billion of increased expenditures due to the pandemic, requiring a 24% reduction in their budgets.

In a typical year, local governments receive roughly 35% to 40% of revenue through intergovernmental transfers, the vast majority of it coming from state governments that now face budget crises of their own. This will lead to further budgetary shortfalls for localities.

In addition to heightened expenditure needs and falling revenues, local jurisdictions must balance their budgets and are heavily penalized for borrowing for operating expenses. As of now, these governments are faced with only two choices—cut spending or raise taxes. Both of these actions will deepen and lengthen the economic recession, as they did during the last recession.

Based on prior economic downturns, most local jurisdictions are likely to use spending cuts rather than tax increases to balance their budgets—indeed, many local governments already face relatively strict limits on their taxing authority.

Without federal aid now, local governments will be forced to furlough and lay off workers, deepening the recession and cutting back on critical services to constituents, such as police protection. In addition, local governments would be forced to reduce the assistance they provide to constituents and entities within their borders for coping with the effects of the pandemic. These highly undesirable outcomes can be prevented if sufficient federal fiscal relief is provided to local jurisdictions, but the clock is ticking.

At AV Capture All, our goal is to help local governments perform their mandates to keep their constituents informed.  Our affordable meeting management solutions for local government improve efficiency by streamlining the meeting workflow, while promoting transparency and accountability by empowering constituents to access valuable information pertaining to their community. With AV Capture All, government agencies can easily Capture, Manage & Share their meetings online.

Click here to request a DEMO today

May 18

Governments Struggling With Public Records Requirements

By |2020-05-18T13:52:11-08:00May 18th, 2020|City Clerks, Industry News, Live Streamng, Technology Innovations|0 Comments

Every state in the country is dealing with the health crisis differently. Local governments are finding ways to keep cities running while the staff is stretched thin. As a result, many state and local governments have reduced access to public records that have details about key government decisions.

Public officials have said employees either don’t have the time or ability to compile the requested documents or data because they are too busy responding to the outbreak or are working from home instead of at government offices.

The result is that citizens may be in dark about how decisions are being made that affect their lives. Some governors have issued decrees allowing record requests to be put on hold for as long as the health emergency continues. Others have extended response deadlines by days, weeks, or even months. Governors from Washington to Michigan to Rhode Island also have used their executive powers to waive or extend response deadlines for open-records requests.

For open-government advocates, this is a challenging time.

In order to avoid waste, fraud, and abuse, it’s essential the press and public have access to records and information to hold accountable those who have the power to spend the billions of dollars states are receiving to address the issues from COVID19.

“The public records law exists to give people the ability to hold their government accountable, and without timely access to information, they can’t do it,” said Attorney Brian Black, executive director of The Civil Beat Law Center for the Public Interest.

While many local governments are holding virtual public meetings, the public is still not receiving information that pertains to their health and livelihoods because states have declared a “State of Emergency” which limits access to information.

“Things like that are especially problematic, because we have no idea when these states of emergencies are going to end,” said Gunita Singh, an attorney at the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, based in Washington, D.C. “Who knows how long these individual requesters are going to be waiting to have their public records requests fulfilled?”

With AV Capture All meeting management solutions, we make it easy for local Governments to keep constituents informed and engaged. Our Live-Streaming solutions are secure and easy to use and let’s local governments stay engaged with the public during this unprecedented time.

AV Capture– Legislative Solution is used to record Audio and Video while integrating Agendas, Minutes, and Related Documents. The document content is synchronized with the Audio/Video stream, then indexed and immediately searchable when published online. Once published, staff and citizens can view any part of the Audio/Video-on-demand, while following along with the synchronized Agenda, Minutes and Related Documents. Live Streaming is also integrated into the platform to allow staff and citizens who cannot attend the meeting in-person to view online from home.

AV Capture is here to ensure the gears of government continue to work and the public is informed.

Click here to contact us TODAY to a Demo.

May 12

Virtual Security Now More Important Than Ever

By |2020-05-12T10:24:13-08:00May 12th, 2020|City Clerks, Court hearings, Industry News, Live Streamng, Technology Innovations|0 Comments

As the Coronavirus pandemic continues, almost everyone has adapted to a new, virtual reality. Businesses, doctors, restaurants, and even the U.S. Supreme Court have made adjustments so they can continue functioning while people shelter at home.  

And now our Federal Government is engaging in video conferencing. Last week members of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus met for the first-ever “Virtual Congress.” The event was streamed on Facebook Live with members speaking against a backdrop of the House chamber. The hourlong session was meant to replicate how the House debates legislation.

This week, for the first time in American history, a senate hearing will be conducted via videoconferencing. The Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hosted the virtual hearing which will feature a combination of in-person and video conferencing participation.

“After consulting with Dr. Fauci, and in an abundance of caution for our witnesses, senators, and the staff, all four Administration witnesses will appear by videoconference due to these unusual circumstances,” said Senator Lamar Alexander, chair of the committee.

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Dr. Fauci, Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Stephen Hahn and Assistant Secretary for Health Brett Giroir will also appear at the virtual hearing.

For Federal employees, one of the biggest issues they face is security. With the shift to telework, using personal computers versus agency-assigned computers has been a sticking point for several reasons. Agencies are now writing new policies for work-at-home during the COVID-19 pandemic that allows employees to use their own devices and “bring-your-own-device” (BYOD), which could have effects even after employees are able to return to the office.

“BYOD is now the reality, and it will continue to be,” said Greg Touhill, former federal CISO, and president of mobile security firm AppGate Federal Group, “because I don’t think we’re going back.”

Government agencies that have focused on the identity-based model of security have encountered fewer technical hurdles to access as the shift to telework enters the medium and long term.

Live Streaming Virtual meetings have some drawbacks but for the most part are an efficient use of time and resources.

According to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM), the statistics support the work from home model. The benefits of Live Streaming video communication are increased productivity, better connected distributed teams, reduced travel expenses, and a less stressful way to meet and work.

An OPM survey done before the health crisis found that video telecommuting work from home has been beneficial:

  • 82% of video users are less likely to multitask (as compared to just audio)
  • 78% of users said they use video communication at work for team meetings or stand-up meetings because it keeps them connected and engaged
  • 63% of video users miss seeing colleagues’ faces when they can’t join calls

The issue of security has not been addressed by many providers. However, now is the time for video conferencing providers to implement enterprise-grade, mission-critical security applications to ensure company and employee data is protected.

At AV Capture All, security has been essential to our platform because we work with government agencies that demand it. Our Live-Streaming solutions are secure, easy to use, and lets local governments stay engaged with the public during this unprecedented time.

AV Capture– Legislative Solution is used to record Audio and Video while integrating Agendas, Minutes, and Related Documents. The document content is synchronized with the Audio/Video stream, then indexed and immediately searchable when published online. Once published, staff and citizens can view any part of the Audio/Video-on-demand, while following along with the synchronized Agenda, Minutes and Related Documents. Live Streaming is also integrated into the platform to allow staff and citizens who cannot attend the meeting in-person to view online from home.

AV Capture All is here to ensure the gears of government continue to work and the public is informed.

Click here to Contact us today to a Demo.

May 8

The Virtual Future

By |2020-05-08T12:19:49-08:00May 8th, 2020|City Clerks, Court hearings, Industry News, judicial, Live Streamng, Technology Innovations|0 Comments

Are our lives going virtual?

Of course, there are services we need that happen in person, but one thing this global health crisis has shown is, a lot of things in our lives that we need can be done virtually.

Technology has been what is keeping us safe, productive, and engaged. As this becomes more of the norm, more platforms will be developed to handle services we used to do in person.

For local governments, technology’s what is keeping everything and everyone connected. All over the country, mayors, who are the heartbeat of their respective cities and their residents, are using technology to keep their city running and citizens engaged.

As technology continues to develop, it will enhance our ability to expand and establish innovative approaches to living, working, and community safety.

Innovation Is Key

The traditional City Hall model has now gone virtual. For large cities like Miami and Chicago and small cities like Biddeford, Maine, they have conducted their City Council meetings virtually and they are encouraging public participation. Across the country, mayors have adopted virtual platforms to deliver city services, collaborate, provide updates on COVID-19, and advance city operations.

While cities across the country continue to race to adapt to the new times we have found ourselves in, it is clear, technology is the solution. Finding the right technology platform is another question. Some have security issues, while others are cost-prohibitive. AV Capture All offers local government solutions that are costs effective and with a robust platform, can keep your constituents informed and engaged.

We’ve discovered remote work can be effective in keeping us safe while doing being productive, and as the social distancing measures continue, we will have to find innovative ways to ensure needs are being met.

As virtual city meetings become the future of local government and we’re meeting with each other virtually online, finding the right platform is key.

Local governments depend on their staff to connect with citizens and virtual conferences and meetings can be a placeholder until we are able to meet in person once again.

According to a report from Cisco Visual Networking Index, by 2021, it is estimated that 80% of web traffic will be video and Live Streaming, including video conferencing. And while some may believe that virtual conferences would not be conducive to attentiveness, 86% of participants in online meetings say they are as attentive as or more attentive than they would be in an in-person meeting. There will be 1.9 billion Internet video users, up from 1.4 billion in 2016, and people worldwide will be watching 3 trillion minutes of Internet video per month, which is 5 million years of video per month.

Get On Board

As things slowly begin to reopen, people will still be reluctant to go to City Council Meetings, especially those that require any kind of travel, like bus or train. Virtual meetings most likely are here to stay as they bridge the gap of caring about the health and wellness of staff, the public, and constituents.

Learn more about how AV Capture All can keep your mandated council meetings safe, effective, and engaging. AV Capture All offers affordable meeting management solutions for local government.
Our solutions improve efficiency by streamlining the meeting workflow while promoting transparency and accountability by empowering constituents to access valuable information about their community. With AV Capture All, government agencies can easily Capture, Manage & Share their meetings online.

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May 6

Love and Weddings in the Time of Health Crisis

By |2020-05-06T11:27:37-08:00May 6th, 2020|City Clerks, Industry News, Live Streamng, Technology Innovations, Uncategorized|0 Comments

You might never think about a government agency or department until you need it, and when you need it during a health crisis that has caused a shutdown government, things can get complicated.

You never think about a marriage license until you need one. Needing a marriage license during the time of COVID19 has been another twist in how we’re adjusting our lives. And interestingly enough, Court clerks are reporting a spike in applications for marriage licenses, despite the COVID-19 restrictions and closed courthouses.

More People Are Applying For Marriage Licenses
Despite The Pandemic

Does experiencing a health pandemic make you adjust priorities and reevaluate your life? When it comes to getting married that seems to be the case. During the first weeks of the pandemic, courthouses actually saw a spike in marriages, and nationally the trend has held steady.

In Alexandria, Va., they issued almost 30% more marriage licenses in February and March than the same time last year. And in Little Rock, AR, they saw a huge spike in marriage licenses the week of St. Patrick’s Day, with more couples coming in than did the week of Valentine’s Day. And despite being closed to the public, the licensing office continues to issue marriage licenses through a plexiglass window.

Disruption and isolation have a way of encouraging us to electively re-evaluate our lives – and that can be a positive affirmation in the middle of a disconcerting time.

Researchers found that when we’re exposed to an uncertainty that feels like it is threatening our future people are eager to affirm their relationships.

Dr. Susan David, a Harvard psychologist and host of a new Ted podcast series on coping emotionally with the pandemic, living through a crisis can be genuinely formative.

“People who’ve gone through trauma or struggle in the way that we are experiencing now, that struggle can simultaneously be distressing, and there is enormous growth and power that can come from it,” she says.

In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order to allow state residents to obtain marriage licenses remotely due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. The state will also recognize marriages performed over a video call as long as both members of the couple are present and there is at least one witness to the live ceremony.

For local governments, keeping life moving is their priority even in the middle of a health crisis. Every state and city are finding ways to keep their citizen’s life moving forward too. At AV Capture All, our priority is to make it as easy as possible for local governments to keep their business of the people moving forward. Our Live Streaming solutions and platform allow staff and citizens who cannot attend the city meeting’s in-person to view online from home.

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