Co- Founder and CTOof Soracom, Kenta Yasukawa – AITech Interview

Soracom Relay allows customers to use existing RTSP/RTP-compatible cameras for audio and video data transmission. Can you discuss how this feature enhances IoT deployments, especially in terms of computer vision and video analytics?

There are many cameras available today that claim to be “connected to the cloud,” but most of them are tightly integrated into their vendors’ vertical cloud applications and require wholesale replacement of existing hardware to take advantage of these capabilities.

RTSP is a standard protocol already widely used in various IP camera products, making them easy to integrate within a tech stack but typically only in single building on-site CCTV deployments. The ability to securely connect RTSP cameras securely to the cloud opens the door to advanced monitoring and analysis capabilities without needing to change your entire set of cameras to shift to cloud-based video processing.

Soracom Relay enables a complete new set of potential opportunities to create value from existing view/record/replay cameras over to new architectures that connect those same video streams to cloud-based processing. Single-site installations typically use disk-based recorders that implement RTSP/RTP connections so that video streams can be viewed locally, sometimes with additional proprietary cloud features for simple remote-view functionality.

With Relay connecting cameras to Amazon Kinesis Video Streams, we encapsulate the overhead of implementing the RSTP/RTP protocol into the camera’s Soracom connection and let the customer shift to an AWS cloud compute architecture to process and create valuable business-centric insights.

Security is a significant concern when dealing with data transmission, especially in IoT. How does Soracom ensure the security of audio and video data transmitted through Soracom Relay?

The security and privacy of customer data is the highest priority in the Soracom platform. We have multiple layers of security implemented in our platform and also offer services for our customers to build a secure infrastructure that supports the needs of  their particular IoT fleet.

Soracom Relay is an ideal match for the secure architecture at the heart of the Soracom IoT Platform. When we saw this use case we immediately knew that we could mitigate risks and concerns associated with RTSP/RTP connected cameras while opening up new revenue possibilities for customers  by linking cameras that traditionally only have a LAN connection directly to AWS’s video streaming services.

RTP video streams are not encrypted and can be dismissed as a source of IoT data despite the very large numbers of devices deployed in LAN environments. Similarly, the RTSP servers these cameras use have often been implemented with poor administration account credentials.

When IoT devices use Soracom connectivity they benefit from a fully encrypted link for all traffic between the devices and our connectivity platform. In the case of RTSP/RTP cameras, that means that the account login process is completely locked down to the Soracom account and moved out of reach from bad actors. The valuable video streams become tamper free, ensuring both that the stream is trustable and at the same time unavailable for others to access.

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