What’s involved in choosing the right CCTV system for your business? As technology has advanced, the choices have broadened and the benefits have grown more varied.
In this blog, we’ll review the current options available on the market and how you can benefit from them.
Who might use CCTV?
CCTV, or closed circuit television, is commonly used in many homes and businesses around the world. It’s widely regarded as an excellent security solution for anyone concerned about unwanted behaviour on their property.
For commercial premises, CCTV makes sense particularly for those with high footfall. You have no idea who is coming and going and CCTV gives you the technology to keep an eye on matters even when you’re not physically there. Homeowners are increasingly becoming switched on to CCTV as the technology improves and costs reduce. If you live in a high crime area, CCTV can help to reduce insurance premiums and act as a deterrent preventing burglary and trespass.
If you’re considering installing a new system or upgrading the one you have, it’s worth exploring different technology for the benefits it provides.
What are the benefits of CCTV?
The obvious benefit of any CCTV system is that it helps to prevent crime. Studies have shown that when a business clearly displays its CCTV, opportunistic crimes are less likely to occur. The footage recorded by your CCTV system can also be used in court for evidentiary purposes. However, if you think there’s a strong possibility that this will happen, we’d recommend installing high definition equipment. Numerous factors affect the quality of recordings and standard definition images can still be quite grainy or not have enough detail in them to satisfy a judge or jury.
CCTV removes the need for you to have a physical presence in vulnerable areas of your business to watch over wrongdoing. Long gone are the days of security guards on watch 24/7. It’s no longer necessary out-of-hours either; remote monitoring stations (see more on that below) have superseded the need for on-site monitoring overnight and at weekends. And it’s generally a more cost effective method than employing people to watch over your premises.
Reduced insurance premiums and more streamlined insurance claims (using video evidence from your CCTV) are two more reasons why business owners love CCTV. Oh, and let’s not forget peace of mind!
I already have a system. Do I have to upgrade or buy new?
You may already have a CCTV system in situ and wonder if that means you cannot take advantage of something more advanced without significant financial investment and disruption to your business. The answer is simple. You can. That’s not to say you have to. We’re happy to take over maintenance from your current supplier, but, if you wish, we can advise you and design a new system to suit your changing needs.
We use only the highest quality equipment and embrace the latest technological innovations including IP and HD imaging with exceptionally high resolution in colour and mono. If you do decide to upgrade we can provide you with all manner of exciting features such as panning, tilting and zooming along with motion detection built into an alarm system. If you’re away from your business but still like to keep an eye on what’s going on, you can check on camera footage from your smartphone, anywhere in the world (as long as you have an internet connection).
For additional security measures, you can combine CCTV with intercoms, intruder alarms and electronic access control systems.
What are the benefits of HD CCTV?
We’re all used to high definition technology in living rooms, so it’s no surprise that CCTV is also available in HD. The images are noticeably crisper and cleaner than standard resolution which makes HD attractive to many.
HD CCTV has other benefits, in addition to the quality of recordings. When installing HD cameras, we can often use the existing wiring from your lower quality cameras, which makes an upgrade more cost effective than you might think and minimses disruption. If you’re tempted by HD but assume it’s too expensive, it’s worth having a chat to us. As technology improves, prices are becoming more competitive.
As we’ve already mentioned, CCTV systems are ideal for monitoring and surveillance. Clearer and sharper images from HD CCTV combined with a wider field of view provide high quality pictures and improve your chance of a successful prosecution. You can also take advantage of additional zooming or cropping.
Let’s review the features and benefits of HD CCTV:
- Acts as a deterrent against crime
- Low voltage and motion detection systems keep operating costs low
- High-quality digital imaging (even in low light) with crystal clear recording and playback
- Supports you in the event of an insurance claim or criminal court case
- Use indoors or outdoors to protect property, people, vehicles and valuables
- View your CCTV on your smartphone, anywhere in the world
- Easy to use interface with simple access to footage
- Wide range of systems to suit varying requirements
With such a dazzling array of benefits, you’d be forgiven for thinking that HD CCTV is top of the range. In fact, it’s not. They are positioned between standard CCTV and the latest tech – megapixel IP CCTV. Let’s take a look at the features and benefits.
What are the benefits of IP CCTV?
IP or internet protocol technology has taken CCTV to the next level. If you want super crisp and clear images with a catalogue of other features, then IP CCTV is for you.
IP CCTV cameras transmit directly to a recording device as well as connecting via a network (which allows for larger chunks of data to be sent than is possible with analogue devices). You can quickly monitor what is happening on your property from a smartphone or tablet and if you spot anything suspicious, you can instantly raise the alarm.
This increase in data transfer allows for higher megapixel recordings and crystal clear pictures. You’ll also be able to zoom in to view the tiniest details without pixelation or blurriness. When you compare IP cameras to older analogue cameras, the increase in resolution is staggering – up to six times as high.
The additional features are also impressive. Motion detection sensors can determine if movement comes from an animal or a person. Facial recognition and ANPR (automatic number plate recognition) is also available; ideal for premises where staff come and go frequently and you don’t have the resources to check each one individually. ANPR is perfect for warehouses and factories with vehicles entering and leaving frequently. If someone is uninvited, your CCTV can quickly alert you.
You can choose from different types of IP camera depending on your business requirements. Take a look at our CCTV page to find out more.
I need remote monitoring services. Do you offer this?
Yes, we do. Gone are the days when your CCTV had to be viewed by you or someone on site. We’ve already talked about IP cameras giving you the freedom to monitor remotely. But if you are too busy to do this, it’s now possible to outsource the remote monitoring.
Advances in technology has created Detector Activated Remotely Monitored camera systems. These are ideal for large or exposed sites in remote locations and provide an alternative to continuous live monitoring of images.
How does it work? A remotely monitored CCTV system will activate in response to a intrusion. The system records AND sends an alert signal to a Remote Video Response Centre (RVRC), where an operator will respond. You can agree on the desired response; it may be to contact a named keyholder, or to call the police immediately.