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The Essential Features of Security Cameras

Security cameras can alert you of activity around your home or business, giving you peace of mind whether you’re there or not. They also record footage to help you identify and address operational inefficiencies.

Motion sensors can be triggered by even innocuous changes, such as shifts in ambient light or tree branches blowing in the wind. Look for a camera that offers the ability to narrow its range of detection or adjust its sensitivity to reduce false alerts. Click the Mobile Security Trailer to know more.

Security cameras help us feel more connected to our homes, whether we’re watching over kids while a nanny is in the house or making sure aging relatives are getting proper care. These days, many cameras have plenty of features that might not be completely necessary, but there are a few essentials you’ll want to look for.

Security camera resolution is important, but you’ll also want to consider other factors such as night vision and two-way audio. Night vision means the camera will work in low-light conditions without sacrificing image quality. This is especially useful for monitoring outdoor spaces or dimly-lit rooms inside the home. Two-way audio lets you communicate directly with the camera through your smartphone or tablet — useful for everything from confronting intruders to comforting pets during a storm.

Some cameras also support motion detection – technology that triggers recording only when the camera detects movement, such as someone entering or leaving a room. This can help reduce bandwidth and storage usage by eliminating unnecessary recordings, like those caused by natural light changes or moving wind. Most cameras offer the option to set a threshold for motion detection, so only the most significant events will be recorded.

Most professional monitoring systems and most individually sold security cameras use high-end encryption to protect data and privacy, so you should have little to fear when it comes to hacking. However, it’s still important to stay up-to-date with app and device updates.

You’ll also want to ensure your security camera can work with other smart devices in your home, such as voice assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant. Often, this will be indicated by a “Works with” or similar logo on the product page. Some home security brands will also list compatible third-party devices on their website, such as Vivint’s page for Google Home, Amazon Alexa and Philips Hue.

Some cameras may be battery-powered or wired into a power source, while others will be wireless and connect to your home Wi-Fi network for remote monitoring. A wireless connection can also be helpful if you need to monitor your property while at work, but you don’t have access to your home network.

Safety

Security cameras can be a great way to strengthen your home’s security. However, they can also degrade privacy if not properly configured and used. The good news is that major professionally monitored security systems and many individually sold cameras from reputable manufacturers include high-end encryption, which scrambles messages between devices and the cloud for secure access. As long as you keep your app and device updates up to date, you should have little to worry about hackers getting into your system.

Another factor to consider is whether your camera has a field of view (FOV) that’s adequate for your needs. Most security cameras have an FOV of about 130 degrees, but some have a much wider angle that can cover larger areas. You’ll also want to look for features that will help protect your privacy, like the ability to disable remote viewing. Some systems, such as SimpliSafe’s video verification feature, allow you to grant access temporarily to a monitoring center in an emergency situation, which is helpful for speeding police response.

If you plan to store your footage in the cloud, look for a camera that offers cloud recording. This option keeps your recordings offsite in a server operated by the camera manufacturer or a third-party. Typically, you’ll have to pay a monthly or yearly fee for this service. If you don’t want to use the cloud, look for a camera that keeps your recordings on an internal hard drive or SD card instead of in the cloud.

It’s also important to choose a password for your camera’s cloud account and make sure it is difficult for someone to guess. You’ll also want to opt for two-factor authentication if available, which will require something in addition to your regular password, such as a code sent by email or generated from an authenticator app, to log in.

Consider placing your cameras on a separate network from other devices, like your computer and printer. This can help protect your devices if you ever need to reset your router or change the password, as you’ll still need to know the credentials for your cameras.

Surveillance

The main reason most people get security cameras is to monitor their property and keep track of who comes in and out. Many of the latest models can also detect motion and record footage if an event occurs. This can help prevent false alarms and ensure you have proof in the case of a break-in or other security incident.

Most home and business owners now have remote access to their recorded and live-streamed videos via mobile apps. This means they can check on their property even if they’re away from the office or at home. These electronic sentinels also offer a treasure trove of operational insights, from tracking foot traffic to monitoring employee efficiency. These data points can help businesses pinpoint performance opportunities that will increase efficiency and reduce costs.

A good quality digital security camera can offer a high resolution of up to 1080 pixels. This is ideal for identifying details, particularly in low-light conditions. The higher the pixel count, the better the clarity of the image. A camera with a wider angle of view is also a useful feature as it covers more area and can detect movement at a greater distance.

Many modern security cameras come with advanced features such as a built-in speaker and microphone, two-way audio and integration with smart home devices. Those with facial recognition software can recognise individuals and alert you when they are in the frame. Some can even zoom in on a person and follow them as they move around the room.

While security cameras have their advantages, it’s important to understand their limitations. It’s a good idea to place them away from any areas that could be considered private, such as bedrooms or bathrooms. If your camera does have an internet connection, it’s worth considering putting it on a separate network from other household devices like computers and printers. This way, if your network is hacked, the hackers won’t be able to access the cameras easily. You can also opt for cloud recording that stores your footage off-site in a secure server. However, you’ll want to be sure that the cloud provider uses secure encryption and doesn’t have a history of security breaches.

Documentation

The ability to document security events is a crucial feature of any CCTV system. Whether it is an intruder breaking into your home or an Amazon delivery person opening the wrong door, surveillance cameras can help you identify the culprit. The quality of your video footage will depend on the resolution, night vision and field of view of your camera. Some of the most popular security cameras include HD video, wide-angle lenses and motion detection capabilities.

The recording device is where all of the video from your CCTV cameras gets stored and viewed. The two types of video recorders used in CCTV systems are DVRs and NVRs. Both offer different features and benefits. The type of recorder you choose depends on your security needs and the installation requirements for your CCTV system.

Storage for your CCTV camera system is a crucial component to capturing video evidence effectively. Gone are the days of storing surveillance videos on VHS tapes; microSD cards are now the norm and provide loads of storage for your cameras for a low price. Using local storage can also save you on internet bandwidth if your cameras have a data cap.

If you use a cloud-based surveillance system, you should check to ensure your Internet connection is strong enough to support the load of multiple cameras and recording devices. Most cloud-based surveillance solutions require at least a 512kbps upload speed to function properly.

For residential communities, it’s important to set clear policies around camera use. This should include how residents can use their cameras and who will be able to view footage. This can be communicated through a community newsletter or on a social media page.

Tools for installing CCTV systems include power drills, screwdrivers and cable testers. A power drill is essential for making holes for mounting CCTV cameras, and a cable tester is useful for determining whether or not your cables are in good condition.

A multimeter can be helpful for troubleshooting your cable connections and testing voltage, current and resistance in your system. Having these tools will make it easier to install and maintain your CCTV system.