We all know how CCTV can help make you, your employees and your clientele feel safer. Acting as a deterrent to would-be offenders, it also provides some comfort that if the worst happens, all will be recorded and any criminal activity dealt with efficiently. Or would it?
If your CCTV system is badly configured, or cameras are positioned ineffectively, you may as well not have one at all. With your investment going straight down the drain, you’d have trouble explaining why this was not addressed if it came to the crunch.
But it’s not just safety and security that video surveillance and monitoring offers – the latest technology can provide other perks, particularly in retail, that can reduce losses, improve merchandising trouble-spots, and provide an overall better customer experience using intelligent solutions.
If you’re thinking of upgrading your existing CCTV systems, or implementing one from scratch, it’s likely to be a waste of time and money if done poorly. If you’re not considering a review right now, then maybe you should be!
Here’s five important factors to consider:
1. Setup & Configuration
~ Positioning – are cameras facing the right way without blockages?
~ Pixels – are there enough pixels on the target, standing still and moving?
~ Shutter speed – don’t rely on factory defaults, it needs to be fast enough to capture and freeze movement.
~ Lighting – have natural changes to lighting been considered and thoroughly tested? Daytime/night-time/artificial light makes a huge difference.
2. Maintenance & Proactive Monitoring
Yearly servicing is simply not enough.
You need to ensure your CCTV system is regularly maintained, the smallest change can make the biggest difference. For example, if a camera is obscured while cleaning, how would you know if it’s still capturing anything useful? Or a hardrive failure?
Notifications can be set up so that emails are sent to notify you upon video loss, hard drive failure or cameras moved.
Your CCTV system should be continuously monitored and evaluated.
It’s essential that the quality of recordings will be adequate to be used in evidence, and that hotspots are covered.
Evaluation reports should be done every 3 months in early stages, then at regular intervals ongoing.
4. Other Crime & Violence Prevention Measures
The Health and Safety Executive recommends getting involved in a partnership scheme, where you can share CCTV images of known troublemakers with fellow shops/bars and police.
Contact your local crime prevention officer for details.
5. Professional Advice
Have you sought professional advice from a consultant recently, or even the past year or two?
Quite often CCTV systems are installed and just left at factory default settings for several years, doing a pretty much useless job!
You need to be 100% sure any investment you make in security is providing the best possible returns. Our CCTV Specialists Team can carry out a full review of your current setup, identifying any improvements to get the best out of your existing equipment.
Or if we think an upgrade is needed, we can help with that too.