CCTV cameras are an important part of the security strategy of any business. Security cameras help in safeguarding your business interests and they can also help in creating a safer workplace. They act as a major deterrent to crime, allowing you to monitor your premises and also help in reducing insurance costs. Here are some of the top benefits that a CCTV system can bring to your business.

Deter theft and crime

CCTV cameras installed at your premises will act as a serious deterrent to burglars and anyone carrying out illegal activities. People are less likely to commit a crime if they know they’re being monitored. In addition to random theft, some toxic employees may steal from a business. Although it is unlikely that employees will steal from their workplace and many employers don’t like to think that their staff will commit a crime, it might happen. CCTV cameras will help you in identifying the suspect and the video footage can also be used as evidence in court if needed.

Monitor activity

If you’re a small or medium business owner, you might know that it’s not possible to constantly keep an eye on your business. Installing a CCTV system can be a great way to monitor the operations and day-to-day activities of employees and outsiders. This can be beneficial for remote sites and when a manager isn’t present at all times. CCTV cameras can also help in increasing efficiency and productivity as well as they also provide the evidence needed to resolve internal conflicts.

Helps reduce insurance costs

For a business that wants to thrive in the market, it’s essential to keep a record of when the staff are reporting and when the deliveries are made. If someone claims that they were injured while working and if there’s no way to know whether the claim is genuine, your insurance premiums will increase to a great extent. Having evidence of incidents that occur is extremely beneficial, especially if someone is trying to scam you. The best part of having security cameras is that many insurance providers offer huge discounts on setting up a  CCTV system in your business premises.

Create a safer workplace  

By installing surveillance cameras at the entry and exit points, and in the parking lots of your business, you’re creating a safer workplace. Your staff will feel safer, and CCTV cameras will also prevent vehicle break-ins and vandalism. In addition, cameras will prevent harassment and other compulsive behaviours that are inappropriate in your business environment. 

Sensitive area surveillance

The Benefits of Using CCTV System for Your Business

Every business has areas that have sensitive information which cannot be revealed to everyone. The installation of security cameras in such areas discourage anyone from entering these locations and protects your secret.

Trade secrets are one of the most important parts of any business and to have that leaked can prove detrimental to the organization. A good CCTV system will help you resolve these issues and ensure total peace of mind.

How to choose the correct CCTV camera?

A wide variety of security cameras available in the market makes it extremely difficult to choose a system that is best suited for your business environment. Below are some of the things to keep in mind before selecting a CCTV system.

Understand the basic camera capabilities

When selecting surveillance cameras, it’s important to consider the wide-angle degree, lens size and memory for data storage. The degree of a wide-angle lens determines the field of vision and the focal length shortens as the angle gets wider.

CCTV systems come with a range of data storage sizes starting from 1TB. You can increase the storage capacity by adding hard drives, or network-attached storage devices to unlimited capacity.

Clarify camera type

Analogue, High Definition (HD) and Internet Protocol (IP) are the three types of cameras available in the market. The analogue cameras are the most affordable ones, while the other two are costly as compared to analogue ones. Luckily, camera prices have dropped drastically with recent advances in CCTV technology. This means that you can easily afford a CCTV system for your business.

Cheap can be expensive

Always try to buy a CCTV system that has the best value for money within your budget. It’s good to invest in a quality CCTV system that allows you to add more cameras later on instead of buying an unbranded cheap camera which leads to remorse.

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.

Where to Place Home Security Cameras

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.

The Different Types of CCTV Monitoring Services

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:

  1. If you have a business, then you definitely need a CCTV system.
  2. 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

  1. 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.

  1. Security cameras

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.
  1. 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.

  1. 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.

  1. Storage

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.

Conclusion

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.

CCTV cameras play an important role in deterring crime. You can use CCTV camera installer to secure your workplace and home premises. With a number of surveillance system variants available in the market, it can be difficult for you to choose the correct one. The system specifications need not be maximum and most recent but rather in accordance with your specific security needs. The camera lens is one of the most important factors while considering the specifications of your surveillance system. Right lens resolution will ensure good quality surveillance and can help you in identifying criminals. This blog post will explain to you the different types of lenses and how to choose the best one.

Type of lenses

There are three different types of lenses for a CCTV camera – fixed, varifocal and zoom. Each of them has applications in different areas and their characteristics differ from each other. Focal length and the capability of the adjustment of the focal length determine the type of lens in the surveillance camera. The focal length is expressed in millimetres and it is inversely proportional to the field of view.

Fixed lenses 

This type of lens has a fixed horizontal field of view and a set focal length. The operator must physically move the camera to change the amount of detail that can be viewed. Fixed lenses are suitable for general applications and they can be used to monitor small areas, such as an entrance or a lobby. This type of lens is cheaper as compared to zoom or varifocal lenses.

Varifocal lenses 

The focal length of varifocal lenses can be adjusted as per the requirement. Generally, you can adjust the focal length between 3mm and 9 mm. You can also adjust the horizontal field of view of the camera which can be helpful if there are restrictions on where you can mount the camera.

Zoom lens 

Zoom lenses provide you with the ability to adjust the focal length of the lens from a user interface, such as the video management software. The range of a zoom lens is typically much larger than the fixed and varifocal lens. Although zoom lenses are expensive, they can be the most affordable security solution for your business. 

The Different Type of Camera Lenses and How to Select the Best One

How to select the best lens

Here are some factors that you should consider while selecting the camera lenses for your system.

Focal length

The focal length or the lens size determines the field of view and it is also called as the viewing angle for a particular camera lens. The smaller the focal length number is, the wider area you can see but with fewer details; the bigger the focal length, the further you can see with a narrower viewing angle. The focal length can vary from wide angles that can capture an entire landscape to a telephoto lens which can be used to focus on a small object.

If you want a camera lens for your warehouse or construction site, the wide-angle lens can be the best choice for you. The narrower angle lens is ideal for critical entrances, such as cash registers and doorways.

 Aperture

Aperture controls the brightness of the image that passes through the lens and falls on the image sensor. It is expressed in f-numbers, such as f/1.4, f/2, f/2.8, /f4, f/5.6, f/8, f/11, f/16, f/22, or f/32. A lower f-number represents a wide aperture. For instance, f/1.4 is a large aperture and allows for more light to pass into the camera.

The CCTV system will allow you to control how much a scene is in focus by adjusting the lens aperture. A wider aperture will focus on a specified object and will make the background blurry. Whereas, a small aperture will focus on everything within the range of the camera.

Iris

An iris is the part of the camera that controls how much light comes through the aperture. In simple words, more light can pass through the iris when it creates a large opening. However, you cannot get a better image by the wider opening of the iris. Too much amount of light can wash out your image and little light makes the scene dark.

The fixed and manual iris lenses are usually used for indoor applications while the auto iris lens is ideal for outdoor locations where there are variations in lighting conditions.   

C or CS Mount for your CCTV camera installer

You can either select from the C or CS-mount option while installing the Camera. The major difference between the two is the distance from the image sensor to the lens. The distance for C mount is 17.5 mm and it 12.5 mm for the CS-mount.

CCTV systems can dramatically increase the security of your property and keep your loved-ones protected. Calling a professional person can be a low-stress way to get your CCTV installer monitor system up and running. This blog post will explain to you the importance of hiring a CCTV installer and how to choose the right one.

Why you should hire an installer?

A CCTV installed by a professional person ensures total peace of mind. After assessing all your requirements, the installation company will provide you with the best CCTV system. Some DIY kits in the market can offer similar features but you won’t get the best out of them. Even worse, they could actually be a security risk for you and your business.

How to Choose the Right CCTV System Installer

Hackers

With the advancement in technology, you can now access the video footage from your laptop or smartphone. This means you can keep an eye on your premises anywhere, anytime. However, the problem with this system is that it is connected to the internet. As home DIY kits are usually set up in an improper manner, your system may be vulnerable to attacks from hackers. Professionally fitted CCTV is less likely to be vulnerable because the security settings, such as port numbers and default passwords are changed after installation.

Picture quality

Imagine a burglar enters your home and steals some valuable items, such as jewellery or your laptop. You won’t worry much at that moment because you had installed a CCTV system in the previous year. But when you play the video footage, the camera resolution is not proper and you can’t see the burglars face. In such situations, a camera with a good picture quality can be really helpful. Professionally installed CCTV cameras could give you a lifeline – so you might see the burglars in the video footage and call for police assistance.

What should you look for when choosing an installer?

Modern CCTV camera systems have more in common with computers than the analogue systems that were very popular in the last decade. The CCTV installer should have the knowledge of computer networking for you to take full advantage of the features your surveillance system can offer.

Here are the three main types of surveillance systems:

Analog

Analog CCTV systems use the oldest technology and they are cheap as compared to other systems. Analog CCTV cameras are connected to the monitor using coax cable such as RG59. They are easy to install but the image quality is poor. For instance, it would take about 6 analog cameras to capture the level of detail of a single HD camera. If you need a high-quality image to identify burglars, then you may consider the other technologically advanced system. If the fitter only installs analog systems, you may want to contact someone else.

HD-TVI

HD-TVI stands for High Definition Transport Video Interface. The HD-TVI cameras currently support 720p, 1080p and 4K video resolutions. These cameras use the same coax cable used by analog CCTV cameras which makes it easier for people to upgrade to an HD system. They offer a range of 1600 feet from the DVR and are available at lower prices than many similar IP camera systems.

IP

Internet Protocol (IP) cameras are currently the best cameras that are available in the market. The images captured by an IP camera can be viewed from anywhere around the globe via the internet. These cameras are a versatile security solution and they require nothing more than a network connection. IP cameras don’t need coaxial cables and they can also be relocated. These cameras are available both for indoor and outdoor use with the ability to pan either remotely or via operator command. They also have features like 360-degree fisheye lenses, pin-hole style cameras and thermal imaging.

Things that you should ask the installer

All manufacturers offer warranties on security cameras, but to take advantage, you will have to dismount the camera and send it to them. Meanwhile, as you wait for the repairs, your surveillance system isn’t protecting you. Some of the best installers in the United Kingdom offer additional warranties that help you through the gap of waiting. You will always need a warranty on your security system because anything can happen.

You must ask the installer if they provide workman’s compensation and general liability insurance. Having insurance will ensure that they are professional installers. Even professionals can slip while installing the cameras. If they are insured, you don’t have to worry about being liable.

CCTV cameras provide surveillance capabilities used in the protection of people and assets. A CCTV camera installer links the monitor to a video camera using a direct transmission system. Surveillance systems can be extremely simple, a camera lens with a monitor or very complex that use the latest technology. Here are some key elements of all CCTV systems.

Image acquisition of CCTV system installer

The first stage of any surveillance system is the image acquisition stage. It is an action of retrieving an image from the camera. It is the first step in the workflow sequence because processing cannot be done without an image. The image acquired from the camera is completely unprocessed. You can start with a simple camera. It has a chip at the front that transforms the light or infrared into an electrical signal. The incoming energy is transformed into a voltage by the combination of electrical input power and a sensor material that is responsive to the light. The output voltage is the response of the sensor and it is converted into a digital form that can be displayed on the screen.

The Basic elements of any CCTV camera system

Add a lens to the camera as it will give you a focused image. Adjust the focal length of the lens so that the field-of-view suits your scene and records the footage as per your preferred details. Photons are required to create the picture. The image acquisition can be done by using a variety of sensors. The motion should be in both x and y directions to obtain a two-dimensional image. The rotation of the camera provides motion in one direction while linear motion provides motion in perpendicular directions. A CCTV camera installer cannot capture good images without sufficient light. Hence, you should ensure that there are no objects in front of the camera lens.

Place a protective casing outside cameras as it will protect them against dust, dirt and rain. A wall bracket with a manually adjustable joint will keep your static camera oriented correctly in any weather. If you want to operate your camera with remote control, you can add a motorised pan and tilt unit between the camera and mounting. As the pan needs to decode the remote-control signals, an elementary receiver will also be needed.

Sturdy mounts such as purpose-built poles or lattice towers are needed for heavy loads. Consider tilt-over type of mounts that will allow you to do fitting and maintenance of the CCTV equipment at ground level.

Signal transmission

As we’ve successfully completed image acquisition, let’s progress to the next part – signal transmission. Video output from the CCTV camera could be:

  • IP video as TCP/IP or UDP multicast
  • Composite analogue signal
  • HD-SDI and High Definition

To produce a good quality picture on the screen, the video signal must be applied to the monitor with no distortion of any of its elements. The camera should be connected to the monitor by using Fibre Optic cable or MicroWave link. Fibre Optic cables will transmit the signal effectively because they have a higher bandwidth and low loss characteristics. The composite video output from the average CCTV camera covers a bandwidth ranging from 5Hz to many MHz’s. Almost all cables produce a loss of signal that is primarily dependent on the frequency. The higher the frequency, the higher the loss. This means that as a video signal travels along a cable it loses its high-frequency components faster than its lower ones. A significant loss of detail is not usually objectionable unless it is very large.

Wireless cameras are alternative to cameras using cables. The wireless transmissions include microwave line-of-sight links and microwaves over short distances. These cameras allow you to access the video footage from your smartphone.

Managing the arrived picture

The video signals from the camera arrive at a CCTV control and monitoring point. Hence, a switcher is necessary to direct the images to the system. Analogue video switchers might be desktop ‘8-in, 1-out’ or ‘128-in, 32-out’ matrix. Sometimes the images are digitised before or after they arrive. Software such as DVR/NVR can be used to switch the images. The output is then transmitted to the display and the recorders. Analogue signals go to the LCD or plasma screens while the digitised signals are fed to displays via the computerised innards of DVR, NVR and Virtual matrix.

The telemetry signals come from the operator’s control keyboard or automatic preset positions triggered by the alarm sensors. As recorders are universally digital these days, you can export the footage to CD, DVD or other portable drives.

CCTV systems are used by various businesses to protect their assets and premises from burglars. According to a report from the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), there are over 6 million surveillance cameras in the United Kingdom. These systems are one of the easiest and most cost-effective security solutions. You can also use a CCTV installer monitor to keep an eye on the activities around your house. This blog post will give you an insight into the pros and cons of installing CCTV cameras outside your house.

Cost-benefit analysis

There are several types of CCTV systems in the market, each with its own operating characteristics. It is necessary to compare the costs and benefits of a surveillance system before installing it. Initial costs depend largely on the size of the house and the type of security solutions needed. For instance, your house may need a more complex system than a warehouse monitoring system. You can purchase domestic CCTV for as little as £50, so it’s potentially a cost-effective way to improve security at your home. You can spend more on a top-of-the-range system and this will help you in identifying a criminal in case a burglary takes place.

You can use a wire or wireless system depending on your budget. Although wired surveillance cameras are cheap, wireless ones will be convenient as you can access them from your smartphone anywhere, anytime. You can store the footage on a hard drive or a separate digital recorder to store the recorded footage. Along with the installation cost, the next cost associated with security systems is maintenance and repair. Maintenance cost may include software upgrades, camera cleaning and hardware replacement due to normal wear and tear. These costs are very minimal to initial investment costs.

Can a CCTV system help you with your home security?

Will it stop crime?

The psychological effect of the presence of surveillance serves as the greatest step in crime reduction. A CCTV system reminds the residents of their security measures that they would otherwise forget easily. Psychologically, people residing in protected areas take more measures to protect their assets. Thus, the surveillance system prevents crime by identifying potential victims. The burglars can also experience the same psychological effect and they won’t commit a crime in secured places. A number of robberies took place on moving trains in Brazil before the trains started using CCTV because the criminals felt no pressure in executing the illegal activities. These cases almost disappeared after the installation of CCTVs on the trains. The criminals fear to carry out illegal activities as the authorities can easily catch them. Surveillance cameras thus affect the criminal psychologically to stop their activities.

Why your CCTV installer monitor could be breaking the law

The home CCTV systems don’t come under the jurisdiction of the Data Protection Act. But if the system is used to monitor other activities than its intended purpose, you may have a case for taking further action under totally different laws. For instance, if your camera is directly pointed towards another person’s property, they have the right to file a case against you under the Human Rights Act.

Private house owners filming outside their premises are no longer covered by an exemption to the Act. Hence, filming your neighbour’s house or road could get you into serious trouble. “Private property owners must operate within the law, for instance by ensuring that their usage and siting of the camera is well justified, that their recordings are not excessive, that it is kept only until it is required and then it is kept secure,” said an ICO spokesman.

You can install the system on your own, but it’s best to ask the ICO for advice first. If you break the laws, you could get involved in proceedings which could end in disdain of court charge.

What about privacy?

“It is still unclear what the implications might be for the citizens of the UK,” says Kate McMullan, an associate at Hogan Lovells. “You have to be careful about the recorded footage. You must inform your neighbours and other people that you are using CCTV, for example by putting a signboard.”

The ICO says that you should still consider whether a CCTV system is wholly necessary, and says you should consider whether other options, such as extra lighting, locks or alarms could solve your security issues. Ensure that your system is not recording audio and the law restricts users to publish the video footage online. Keep in mind to follow all the rules before installing a CCTV system and don’t film outside your premises.