Polycom recently announced that its Polycom RealPresence Platform is serving as the backbone of a secure video collaboration environment for members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), the alliance of 28 countries from Europe and North America focused on defence, security, and crisis management.
Through a NATO contract awarded to Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), Polycom has become the video collaboration platform of choice for NATO employees and delegates who regularly meet face-to-face to confidentially negotiate diplomatic missions, organise humanitarian interventions, and plan NATO Response Force actions wherever NATO members are threatened. In the process, NATO is streamlining decision making and communication across broadly diverse cultures, saving hours or days of travel time for meeting participants, and reducing costs by replacing in-person travel with video meetings.
SAIC is installing Polycom RealPresence Platform components in all major NATO locations throughout Europe and North America. NATO’s stringent security requirements, combined with the need to communicate using a wide variety of legacy systems from multiple vendors, made the Polycom RealPresence Platform a natural choice to underpin the NATO collaboration environment. Polycom solutions are known for their strong security protections and open standards-based interoperability.
Network managers can use the same Polycom RealPresence Video Collaboration Server to accommodate both the highly secure “NATO Secret” classification for confidential communications and “NATO Unclassified” for less sensitive meetings, such as resource planning, cost-effective training, or other essential daily business. Using Polycom’s firewall traversal solutions, network administrators can enable desktop or mobile video users to join meetings without putting NATO’s network at risk.
A scheduling application built with myVRM, a Polycom/ SAIC Technology Partner, allows authorised users to schedule video meetings based on the security classification of the rooms and endpoints available at a given time. Polycom’s interoperability with Microsoft Lync, used widely throughout NATO, also makes it easy for Microsoft Lync users to launch or join a video meeting and upgrade from a voice call to a video call.
Other features unique to Polycom, such as the ability to generate closed captioning, help ensure NATO members can always effectively communicate, even if some participants are hearing-impaired or require captions to fully understand what is being said. NATO also accelerates decision-making by sharing content across Polycom systems.