Archive for month: January, 2020
It is believed that a burglary is committed every 40 seconds in the UK and over 95% of robberies are not solved. CCTV cameras can act as a major deterrent to crime, but if they’re placed in the wrong areas, you may not be as protected as you think. Here are a few tips for placing your CCTV cameras where they will do their best work.
Install CCTV cameras at the front door
You might think that burglars always sneak into side entrances, but statistics show that over 34% of criminals use the front door. So, you definitely need to install a CCTV camera at your front door. Actually, this is the most important spot to place a security camera as it will keep tabs on everybody that comes in and out of your home.
If possible, place your CCTV camera at the second-floor level to avoid a burglar from knocking out your camera. If you only have one level, enclose your front door security camera in a mesh wiring to protect it from tampering.
Locate security cameras at the back and side doors
Around 22% of criminals use the back door to enter a house, so you’d definitely benefit from using a camera here. To know who enters and exits, install security cameras near the secondary doors, especially if one of them is used more than your front door. Actually, it’s good to attach security cameras to every door you have in case of intrusion. Also, try to keep it out of the reach of humans or things they can throw at the security camera.
Put cameras near garage and driveway
A CCTV camera pointed at your garage or driveway helps you monitor your bikes, cars, tools and everyone that handles them. If your garage is detached from your home, a security camera helps you stay connected. If the garage is attached, the extra security camera monitors another possible entryway into your home. You might want to install a camera at the gate of your driveway to spot an intruder attempting to get in.
Placing cameras in common areas
You can install CCTV cameras in gathering points, such as the kitchen or living room to monitor your kids, babysitter, pets and to keep an eye on household help like cleaners and repairmen. In addition, install cameras in rooms that have larger ground-floor windows so that you can see if anyone uses them as a break-in point.
Areas you should not install a security camera
Here are the areas where you shouldn’t place a security camera:
Places that violates other’s privacy
As laws regarding security cameras and their privacy vary from state to state, it’s wise to check local laws in order to ensure that you won’t have any problem in the future. Generally, homeowners are allowed to place outdoor security cameras and it’s fine to capture your neighbour’s front-facing property. However, legal problems arise if you point your cameras towards areas where your neighbour has an exception of privacy or if you use the footage for other purposes. It’s important to note that these rules apply to video surveillance and audio recording without knowledge is illegal in most circumstances.
Bedrooms and bathrooms
It’s important to keep an eye on small kids and seniors, but some areas of the house, such as bedrooms have a warranted exception of privacy. Luckily, technological advances now provide you with plenty of alternatives. Baby monitors can be a smart choice for a very young kid’s room, while personal medical alert systems are strong choices for elderly folks.
Tips for outdoor security camera placement
Ensure that the cameras are not pointed directly at the sun
Sunlight causes glare and high contrast in the video footage, making it hard to identify suspects in case of any intrusion. Consider the movement of the sun and install your cameras away from direct sunlight.
Sunlight causes glare and high contrast in the video footage, making it hard to identify suspects in case of any intrusion. Consider the movement of the sun and install your cameras away from direct sunlight.
Install cameras 8 – 10 feet above the ground
Height between 8 to 10 feet is low enough to capture small details but high enough to be out of easy reach of burglars and criminals.
Decide whether the camera should be visible or hidden
Visible CCTV cameras act as an effective deterrent to crime, but they are also targets for vandalism and robbery. Some homeowners prefer to install a fake camera and back it up with a real one that’s slightly more concealed, while others place a hard casing around the camera that makes it hard for burglars to damage it.
When the 25th of October 2019 was just a normal new day for many residents of London, it wasn’t a great start for Sultan Jewellers, in Shepherd’s Bush, West London. According to the evidence captured on CCTV, a group of three robbers drove a stolen Range Rover into the front window of the jewellery shop during a smash-and-grab robbery. The incident is said to have occurred at 5:20 PM and fortunately, nobody is reported to be injured. The car rammed through the front window of the shop before smashing the interior glass displays with sledgehammers and a hammer and shoving the jewellery into their bag.
Video: The CCTV footage from the Jewellery
After successfully attempting to rob the shop, when the hoodlums tried to flee the scene, the locals chased them and managed to pin down one of the members, Ben Wegener, before the police arrived at the scene. According to the police statement, Ben holds a previous record for robbery, dangerous driving, possession of an offensive weapon, criminal damage and receiving stolen goods. In late November, Isleworth Crown Court charged Ben Wegener of being guilty and sentenced him to 10 years of jail time. The police also recovered the Range Rover, which is reported to have stolen from Wandsworth, South London earlier that month before the crooks decided to get into action.
According to detective Constable Sam Weller, who works under the Central West Robbery Squad, he describes the act of robbery as ‘reckless’ and called it ‘sheer luck’ that everybody came out unhurt or seriously injured during the scene.
Check out our CCTV for commercial places if you would want one to be installed.
With the increase in crime rate in recent years, it’s very important for you to secure your premises by installing a good CCTV system. If you own a business, a CCTV system will ensure maximum protection against threats from outside or even from among your employees. A surveillance system also allows you to protect and prevent the loss of your important documents that are proprietary and confidential.
Benefits of a good CCTV system
Here are some of the advantages of installing a good surveillance system:
Increased deterrent – CCTV systems act as a major deterrent to potential thieves and criminals. Once they realize that your premises are secured by a surveillance system, they won’t carry out any illegal or criminal activities.
Safer working environment – Surveillance systems ensure adherence to health and safety policies and can be invaluable in staff training.
Eliminate fraudulent insurance claims – In a society where people are more sensitive than ever, it’s very important for you to protect your business against insurance claims that are not legitimate. A CCTV will help you in knowing whether the claim is true and can reduce your premiums to a great extent.
Employee protection – A CCTV system is a perfect solution for preventing assaults and false claims of misconduct. It will ensure total peace of mind and will help to mitigate any potential problems stemming from incidents at your premises.
CCTV with remote monitoring
This security system sends the images from your CCTV cameras to the remote monitoring stations. The professionals in these stations keep an eye on your premises in order to detect any suspicious activity. Remote monitoring offers an enhanced level of security and also immediately alerts the emergency services.
What is remote monitoring?
Surveillance systems are a great way to keep criminals away from your premises and remote monitoring only enhances their capabilities. With the help of an internet connection, the system sends your CCTV images to an external remote monitoring station. The monitoring stations are designed to respond to any criminal activity, protecting your property from criminal damage.
How does remote monitoring work?
Most CCTV service providers offer different types of monitoring options, such as full-time monitoring and after work monitoring. A remote monitoring system works in the following way:
- The system sends images from CCTV cameras to a remote monitoring station.
- When suspicious activity is detected by the system, a signal is sent to the security professional. The expert manually monitors the scene and adjusts the cameras to achieve the best footage possible.
- A loudspeaker is used to warn the criminals.
- An alert to the emergency services is also sent by the professional, along with others that you wish to be notified.
Advantages of remote monitoring=”
Remote monitoring allows the professional to move and adjust the camera from a remote location, providing you with the best footage in case any criminal activity occurs. It can also save your money because the intelligent video analysis offered by these systems eliminate the need for a security guard.
CCTV with visual verification
You might have experienced that even the highest quality alarm system sometimes provides false alarms. Statistically, over 90% of activations are false alarms, which costs both users and installers in terms of time and money. Also, false alarms annoy local residents if they happen frequently. With advances in CCTV technology in the past few years, a visual verification system offers a solution to this problem.
What is visual verification?
Visual verification refers to the transmission of CCTV images in real-time via the security system. The images are transferred to the Alarm Receiving Center (ARC) where it is determined whether the alarm activation needs physical attention. These systems differ from the CCTV systems and they only offer evidence of the presence of human activity or movement at the source of alarm. Also, video images captured by visual verification systems cannot be used as court-evidence as they are of low quality.
How visual verification works?
The operating principle of a visual verification system is quite simple. A passive infrared motion sensor which has a built-in video camera captures images of the location when an alarm is activated. The captured images are then sent to the ARC so that the source and cause of activation can be identified. The ARC then alerts the professional if attention is required and it also records and stores the images for further reference. If the cause of activation remains unclear, the ARC operator monitors the situation in real-time.
With some of the most surveillance cameras per head of population, London is one of the most heavily surveilled cities in the world. London is often referred to as the CCTV capital of the world but officially reported figures tells only part of the story. While the UK has some of the toughest privacy laws on the planet, there isn’t an exact figure for how many surveillance cameras are there in the capital.
Estimating the number of surveillance cameras in London
Most surveillance cameras operated in London are owned by private individuals and businesses rather than government bodies. All the privately-owned CCTV cameras must be logged with the Information commissioner’s office if they are not used for domestic purposes. So, with no comprehensive record of surveillance cameras in operation, it can be difficult to estimate the number of CCTV cameras in London.
A 2002 survey conducted by McCahill and Norris estimated that there were around 500,000 CCTV cameras in use in London. The methodology used to conduct the survey is now considered to be flawed as it was based on a small sample. Hence, there are more than half a million CCTV cameras operating in London.
Surveillance cameras are used by various government bodies in London. The transport for the city operates 15,516 cameras across the London underground network and the City of London Police has 110 CCTV cameras in use. A survey conducted by civil liberties and privacy campaign group found that the City of London Council operated 651 surveillance cameras. There are 33 boroughs across London and a BBC survey in 2009 revealed that there were 7,431 surveillance cameras deployed by all of the councils in Greater London.
CCTV cameras operated by private owners in London
In the 2015 report, the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) suggested that CCTV camera numbers in the private sector could outnumber those used by government bodies by as much as 70 to 1. The survey covered the whole of the United Kingdom and its maximum estimate suggested that there was a surveillance camera for every 11 people in the country though it is said that the most likely figure was closer to one for every 14 people.
This would mean there are between 570,000 and 810,000 surveillance cameras in London with another 60,000 – 100,000 cameras in the wider urban area. Considering the figure of one for every 11 people and an increase in population, the number of CCTV cameras would rise to almost 1,000,000 by the end of 2025. Whatever the true figure, that’s a huge number of CCTV cameras monitoring activities of millions who live and work in London.
CCTV cameras in the London underground system
In order to ensure passenger safety and reduce crime in London’s busy subway system, there are an extensive number of surveillance cameras in operation to fight crime.
Recent studies revealed that there are 408 CCTV cameras in King’s Cross and St Pancras, monitoring over 81 million people per year. Here are the other top nine stations:
- Oxford Circus – 309
- Waterloo – 303
- Green Park – 210
- Elephant and Castle – 190
- Bank/Monument – 182
- Westminster – 177
- Piccadilly Circus – 175
- Wembley Park – 171
- Canary Wharf – 167
Looking at the number of CCTV cameras, it’s no surprise that the result is an incredible amount of footage. But still, all the recording is held for two weeks.
As the crime rate tends to be higher in busy stations, such as King’s Cross and St Pancras as compared to Canary Wharf, there are more CCTV cameras in some places than others. Also, these are much larger stations that are always crowded due to tourism.
What does the future hold?
It is estimated that there are 25 million CCTV cameras around the globe and the United Kingdom has more CCTV activity than any other European country. It is also a well-known fact that the average person living in London will be recorded on camera 300 times in one day. An individual in the city doesn’t have to go far without being caught on camera.
If you take a closer look at the public sector, you will find that the golden age of CCTV growth has passed. There are only a few public areas in London that legitimately need CCTV monitoring and are not already under surveillance.
With the increased adoption of advanced features, such as facial recognition and Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR), the private sector will see continued growth in the use of CCTV cameras.
Closed-circuit television system, or a CCTV system, is an excellent way to monitor businesses and commercial properties that need security. They can help you catch perpetrators and show you the vulnerabilities of your existing security system.
Here’s a two-point guide on whether or not you need a CCTV system:
- If you have a business, then you definitely need a CCTV system.
- If you’re on the fence on whether or not your home needs CCTV surveillance, then it does. Better safe than sorry.
If you fall in one of the above two categories who need a CCTV system but are afraid of getting tangled in a huge mess of wires, this guide is for you. Follow this concise guide and your home and business will be safer in no time.
Preparing for the CCTV Installation
Assessing your requirements
It’s not realistic to monitor every square inch of your property. You’ll need to prioritize the areas you want to monitor the most if you want to survey your property efficiently. The easiest way to do this is by drawing a rough diagram of your property or printing out the blueprints and analyzing the best camera positions.
The previous step should have given you a rough idea of how many cameras you’ll need. Now you know if a bundled security system with a preset number of cameras will work for you or if you should buy cameras individually.
Next comes the type of cameras you’ll use in your video surveillance. Whether all your cameras are of the same type of not, you’ll need to consider various factors like indoor/outdoor placement, lighting, ideal resolution, and field of view to pick the right type(s). Here are your options:
- Bullet Cameras – These are tubular security cameras that mount to your wall or ceiling with a tri-axis mount. They can have night-vision and IR capabilities.
- Dome Cameras – These cameras have a better field of view and blend much more into the environment.
- Fisheye Cameras – These cameras offer a focused look at a wide field of view. They’re also self-contained and less susceptible to failures.
- PTZ Cameras – Pan Tilt Zoom Cameras are highly versatile cameras that can zoom and focus on faces or license plates in real time, cycle through different orientations using a program, track a person or a car across a range, and respond to user inputs even from off-site network connections.
- Turret Cameras – These cameras can be repositioned on the fly and work great in low-light and infrared conditions.
- Doorbell Cameras – These cameras combine the benefits of a security camera and an intercom by using a door buzzer and a 2-way intercom in the frame.
- Multiple Sensor Cameras – This type of camera uses several discrete sensors and picture channels to capture a 360-degree field of view and stitches the channels to provide a contiguous feed.
- Wireless Security Cameras – These cameras are great for monitoring small to medium-sized rooms and buildings as they have easy remote access, less wiring, and simpler installation.
Cables and wires
While you can skip the hassle of wires and cables by installing wireless security cameras, wired ones are still supreme when it comes to more long-term and demanding security use. Among wired systems, you should prefer Cat5E or Cat6 cables over traditional coax cables. Cat5E and Cat6 cables support IP cameras and are capable of transferring large amounts of data required by digital video and high resolutions at high speeds and over long distances.
NVR and DVR
An essential part of your video surveillance is the recording system. It’s responsible for recording and storing video on a hard drive, snapping images and transmitting them to your computer or remote device for recorded or live viewing.
You have two options for a recording system: an NVR and DVR. NVRs record video from IP cameras but are more expensive and require some technical knowledge to set up. DVRs record analogue-based video to a digital format but are cheaper and easier to set up.
You need hard drives to store the recorded footage. Calculate the length of the video you need to store by using parameters like bitrate and resolution. This will give you a clear idea of how much storage you’ll need.
Having done this, you’re prepared to install a CCTV system. Before you start, test your equipment by connecting your cables, DVR, cameras, and monitor.
Installing the CCTV System
[Step 1] Choosing an angle
You want your camera to have a high, broad angle. For an indoor camera, the most suitable angle is usually looking down from the corner where the ceiling meets the walls. Ensure that it covers all entries and exits.
If placing outside, use trial and error method to make sure you’re recording the exact angle you want to. Remember to place it above 10ft so that it cannot be easily knocked down.
[Step 2] Mounting your camera
You can use the sticky pads that come with the camera to adhere it to the wall, but the safest way to do it is by screwing it to the surface. Follow the standard screwing process: place the mount in the desired location and mark the holes, drill holes and hammer the moulding pins, and screw the mount to the wall, and position the camera to the desired angle.
[Step 3] Powering your camera
Most cameras have a power adapter that can be plugged into a normal wall socket. Plug the small, round end into the power input into the camera and the other end into the outlet.
[Step 4] Connecting to the DVR
Assuming you chose a DVR as your recording system, you can use BNC cables to connect your surveillance equipment — one end goes into your camera’s “Output” and the other goes into the DVR’s “Input” port.
[Step 5] Making wireless connections
When installing wireless cameras, a software disc will guide you through the steps to link your camera to your computer. Make sure to note down the camera’s IP address if it’s provided. You can use this number to access your camera’s feed remotely from any browser.
[Step 6] Attaching the Monitor to the DVR
The monitor is where you’ll be accessing and watching the camera feed. You can connect it to to the DVR using a BNC cable, though some systems can even make use of HDMI cables and coaxial cables. Connect one end to the monitor’s “Input” and the other to the DVR’s “Input”. The number of DVR inputs available is the number of cameras you can hook up.
[Step 7] Troubleshooting connections
Once you’ve finished the CCTV installation process, you should be able to watch your camera feed on your screen. If not, make sure that the camera, monitor, DVR, and all other components are connected to a power supply and turned on. Check that your cables are attached securely and that you’ve selected the correct inputs for your DVR and monitor.
That’s all there is to installing a CCTV system. Of course, if you’re creating a surveillance hub with a lot of cameras, trying to power multiple cameras through a single outlet, hide your wires and keep them safe, or trying to install hidden cameras, there will be some more compilation. In such circumstances, it’s best to take assistance from security specialists. But whether you go for a hub or not, you can rest assured that your property is safe and secure.
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