A study from 2003 showed that 18% of all burglaries in Australia were committed in non-residential areas, yet businesses suffered 32% of the costs at an estimated $4,500 per burglary. Businesses in Australia regularly fall victim to a number of other crimes including vandalism, assault, credit card fraud or customer and employee theft. For example, a 2011 global survey showed that the average figure for Australian customer theft sat at $74.52, while the average for employee theft was $392.56.
Stories and statistics such as these demonstrate just how important it is to invest in proper security technology and systems that cater to your organisation’s unique needs. One of the more effective and commonly used security systems is Closed-Circuit Television, more commonly known as CCTV.
A CCTV system is designed to monitor and record the exterior and interior of an area using videos cameras that connect to monitors elsewhere, where footage can either be watched in real-time or simply recorded and stored so it can be reviewed later. Fortunately, there is clear evidence that the use of CCTV systems is associated with a significant decrease in crime.
However, with over 4,000 different CCTV cameras available in Australia alone, choosing the right type can be difficult and confusing. To make this decision easier, here are four essential questions you should ask before investing in CCTV technology.
What Do You Want to Monitor?
This is a vital question to ask as it impacts a number of things. Firstly, it will determine the number of cameras you will need to deploy, as you may wish to monitor a larger area that requires several cameras to fully cover the scope, or it may be a smaller area that needs fewer cameras.
Secondly, it will also impact the type of CCTV camera you use. For example, the new 4K CCTV cameras have had some performance issues when it comes to motion filming, meaning they may be less effective for areas such as roads or carparks. You may need to think about whether the cameras should be discreet so that they do not impact on the feeling of a space, or whether you want more obvious ones that can act as a deterrent for criminals.
What Level of Monitoring Do you Want?
When it comes to CCTV, there is the option to record the footage so it can be reviewed later on, or only when the need arises. If recording footage in the long-term is your choice, you need to carefully consider the camera’s storage capabilities, as some may be able to store footage for a short period of time only before the memory has to be wiped.
The other option is to have an external operator that monitors the footage in real-time, with this being the more costly option but also safer as incidents can be responded to immediately.
What Other Features Do You Want?
With a growing variety of new products and rapid innovation in the industry, you may be overwhelmed by the amount of options you have. For instance, CCTV systems can come with features such as facial recognition, intelligent audio alerts, facial zooming and tracking, colour night vision, onboard LED spotlights and more.
It is important to choose the right options for your circumstances. You should think about your current security needs, but also how these needs may change in the future. Consider things such as your organisation’s infrastructure and habits, for example whether your facility is often dark or what type of uniform your staff wear. You must also consider the impact of these features on your staff and customers, and ensure you have a sound understanding of your responsibilities when it comes to regulations and security standards.
Finally, What Will You Use in Conjunction With your CCTV System?
CCTV systems can be an invaluable layer of defence, but they are only one layer; it is clear that CCTV is more effective when it is deployed alongside other security measures.
Indeed, there many other forms of Security Design that will held to build security into your organisation from the ground up and weave it seamlessly into every aspect of your organisation. Make sure you do your research, understand what products and systems are available, and how you can implement them efficiently.
Going through these types of questions and making security decisions often requires in-depth and expansive analysis of your organisation, in order to fully understand your risk profile. This is where experts like Agilient come in. We utilise our unique experience to establish a thorough and clear risk context for your business, then use this to recommend and implement measures regarding the improvement and efficiency of your security. Contact us today to find out how we can help you.
Author: Elsa Chapple , Agilient Consultant.