Introduction to Security Cameras
What Is A Surveillance System?
A Surveillance or Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) System is made up of one or many security cameras that capture and send video to a Network Video Recorder (NVR) or a cloud-based server, which records the video footage and presents them on a monitor or other connected device (ipad, cellphone, etc). Security camera systems have grown immensely, and are commonly seen in many different types of applications.
Three Components of a Surveillance System
A security camera system is made up of three main components:
1. Security Camera
These devices come in many different styles and are chosen based on the location in which they are being installed as well as their intended use.
2. Network Video Recorder (NVR)
An NVR is a computer system that records and stores the video footage that is captured. NVRs also include a software program that will help the user manage, record, and display video.
Today, large video surveillance systems are becoming much more common. These systems are very intricate, and can be made up of many cameras, which are used to facilitate multiple applications and services for a plethora of end users. In these scenarios, many organizations benefit from the use of a dedicated server with a layered video management system (VMS).
Alternatively, cloud-based video surveillance is a growing trend in the security camera industry. This solution moves all of the video management and storage to a cloud-based server and eliminates the need to have a physical server or NVR at your building.
3. Monitor or Network Connected Device
This is a device that is connected to the NVR or cloud-based solution through hard wire or internet that enables the user to view footage from the security cameras. Common devices used for this include computers, tablets, or smartphones.
Types of Security CamerasThere are a multitude of security cameras available with many different features and functions to meet your desired needs. The four most common security cameras used today include:
1. Dome Security Camera
This camera is held in a discreet dome enclosure and can be easily mounted to the ceiling or wall. The dome security camera is very versatile, and can be used both indoors and outdoors.
2. Bullet Security Camera
The bullet security camera is named after its bullet-shaped housing. This camera is best suited in areas with poor lighting, and is primarily used in outdoor applications.
3. PTZ Security Camera
A pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) security camera gives the user control of the direction and zoom through its user software. The PTZ is ideal for covering large areas that may require you to pan across, or for in-depth investigation of high-profile areas within the customer’s site.
4. Box Camera
This camera provides a wealth of options in terms of the types of lenses you can use. Box security cameras are most commonly used indoors and can be installed in many different locations.
IP or Analog
You may come across many discussions around the choice of analog versus IP based security camera systems. It’s best to think of an analog security camera system in the same mindset as older tube television sets. As technology has evolved, today’s IP based systems have allowed cameras to record tin HD1080 resolution, providing a crisp, clear image. IP cameras also allow you to cover a larger area with one camera that would require multiple analog cameras. Finally, IP cameras are much more competitively priced, providing a huge benefit for customers.
Benefits of a Security Camera System
Theft prevention is one of the most common problems that companies face regardless of their industry. Whether this is applied to internal or external theft, a security camera system can deter and capture these types of incidents.
If you oversee the security of a property, you know how important and challenging it can be to ensure the safety of the property itself, and those who occupy it. Criminal activity can lower the value of your business and even deter customers from coming in. A security camera system helps to deter criminal activity from happening, and can capture evidence if an incident were to occur.
3. Video Evidence
Potential liability issues always have the possibility of occurring throughout the everyday operations of a business. A security camera system can be critical in capturing evidence to protect you and your business against a liability claim.
4. Training and Feedback
Efficient operations are important for any business striving to maximize their output. Security cameras will allow you to review video footage and pinpoint any performance opportunities that exist to maximize efficiencies.
For over 30 years, Fire Monitoring of Canada (FMC) has been an industry leader in the monitoring of fire alarm and security systems. If you would like to lean more about how security camera systems can help improve your facility’s security, call us at 1 888 789 FIRE (3473), email firstname.lastname@example.org, or fill out the contact form below.
Originally published in April, 2020, updated January, 2022.