The Essentials of CCTV
CCTV has become all the rage in security over the last 10 years, mostly thanks to a few high-profile and dramatic scenes being captured and broadcast around the world. CCTV has become a part of many home and business security solutions, and while CCTV on its own won’t make you 100 per cent safe, it can certainly play a vital role in a larger security system. The following is a brief look at the essentials of CCTV.
One of the biggest advantages of CCTV is as a deterrent, as most people are less likely to commit a crime if they know they’re being watched. CCTV allows full vision of what’s happening in any area, whether it’s a factory or your front door, providing a huge amount of peace of mind for those who want to be able to see for themselves who is where and what is going on. Should there ever be an incident, having CCTV will give you a fantastic tool for identifying perpetrators.
If you’re going to use CCTV, especially in a workplace, you’re legally obliged to inform people that they are under surveillance — if you don’t, you can be sued for invasion of privacy. You’re also not allowed to put cameras in washrooms or any other area that a person could reasonably expect privacy.
Should you ever need to use footage from your CCTV camera in court, it will only be admitted as evidence if it meets a certain quality standard, which is usually a minimum of 300 lines of horizontal resolution. Colour CCTV also provides better court evidence, as it tends to be easier to identify suspects in a more realistic colour mode. However, colour CCTV is significantly more expensive. Whatever the case, if you think there’s any chance you may need to use your CCTV footage in court, make sure it’s up to the right standard.
Sensors have made it so that your CCTV cameras can essentially just lay wait for something to record, with many modern systems able to use sensors as a trigger for your cameras to start recording. This saves you having to have them running for hours when there’s nothing going on — then, when something does happen, your cameras will be ready to spring into action.
Keep them on!
If you’re going to invest in CCTV cameras, make sure they’re always activated, even during times it seems there is nothing to see. Unless you have an event-driven camera, your CCTV should be running 24/7, so don’t be one of those sad cases of people who are robbed when the security camera is turned off. Let your camera do its job.
Place them well
Make sure any cameras you have set up are focusing on all the right places, as you’ll want to ensure you catch anything that might happen on tape. Focusing all of your cameras on your staff will leave you vulnerable elsewhere, so think carefully about where your cameras are and what they are pointing at.