What should you consider before installing a CCTV system?ArmandtS
In the past surveillance was always conducted by patrolling security personnel who were on the lookout for criminal activity. Human error, focus on cost effectiveness and the fact that patrols cannot be everywhere all the time, have created a need for CCTV systems. The following information will help you select a surveillance solution that functions effectively.
What will a CCTV system do for you?
It’s important to have a realistic view of what your surveillance system will do for you. There are 3 primary uses for a CCTV system:
- To have a visual record of an incident for prosecution or future incident response.
- To obtain visual information about an incident or situation that is currently taking place.
- To deter any activities that you or your organisation find unacceptable.
A camera is not just a camera. When buying a CCTV system it is important to specify the function of each and every camera. The simple way to do this is to write a brief mission statement for each device. This is important and not something to be rushed as it will ensure the appropriate ROI because a system that is designed to meet a specific need continues to perform long after the technology may become obsolete.
You can determine your requirements by answering the following questions:
One of the most important questions then is, what is the purpose of the CCTV system as a whole? Are there requirements for real time monitoring or should video just be recorded for review at a later stage? What is each camera viewing and for what reason?
Once you understand the function of each camera you will need to use different lenses and technologies to create specific fields of view and capture clear images despite environmental changes.
Four factors will help you decide what lens and camera technology to choose:
- What is the target? Is it a person, a group of people, a specific package or packages, vehicles or the global overview of a parking lot?
- What activity are you trying to observe? Is it theft, robbery, assault, trespassing, package unattended etc?
- What is the purpose? Is it to view a fixed area, in which case a static camera is sufficient, or do you require a specific PTZ (pan tilt zoom) that can be controlled by an operator to do visual assessments and video based patrols?
- Will the cameras field of view suffer with environmental effects such as severe backlight, lowlight or fog.
If you can answer all the questions above you are on your way to purchasing a sound solution that will really work for you.
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