6 Reasons Why CCTV Security Systems are Vital for Your Business

Do we pay the price of keeping our facilities safe and secure? Do we have a good ROI when we spend our hard earned cash on CCTV monitoring of our facilities? How crucial is it to have our premises covered by a well-designed professionally installed security system?

One of the most cost effective ways to provide security in the workplace is with CCTV Security or Video Surveillance Systems. The highly advanced technology of modern security cameras allow businesses to lower cost and risk by protecting their assets with continuous and seamless monitoring of their facilities. These relatively inexpensive cameras have in the most part replaced expensive security guards while increasing the reliability and accountability to near 100% by providing real time remote video surveillance.

Here are six reasons why CCTV systems are crucial and extremely necessary for businesses today:

  1. Reduce Cost and Risk

CCTV security systems prove themselves as the best investment as soon as they are installed. Full view of your premises and real-time recording as well as remote online access by owner/manager lowers the risk and prevents costly incidents such as burglary, fire, vandalism, etc.

  1. Prevent and Deter Crime

Criminals target buildings and facilities when they see there is no monitoring or watchdog. The very presence of CCTV cameras on an installation is enough to deter potential criminals and prevent their action at the outset. Similarly, by the sight of a safety hazard, employees can take the necessary action to reduce the risk and alleviate the source in the shortest possible times.

  1. Fool-Proof Coverage

A well-designed CCTV infrastructure is practically impenetrable and can provide 100% coverage. Multiple cameras keeping an eye on each other’s blind spots in addition to keeping an eye on the most vulnerable areas of the property, full monitoring is not hampered by human errors such as the guard being on shut-eye or being busy with something else. Remote online access as well as recording of the events documents everything should it be needed by the police or judge.

  1. Keep Your Employees Honest

CCTV cameras on the outside prevent break-ins by outsiders, but if installed inside the facility to monitor sensitive materiel, goods, and assets, as well as vulnerable areas of a facility, it will prevent wrong doing by company employees. Even if something happens, the recorded video will prevent wrong accusation and lack of trust among all staff.

  1. Encourage Good Behavior

CCTV cameras help in creating discipline among employees and customers alike.  CCTV cameras encourage employees and buyers to be on their best behavior alike. It also gives customers a sense of security and safety as they know they are protected and gives them confidence in doing business with you.

  1. Prevent Safety Incidents

CCTV cameras can be installed in high-risk areas of a business facility or establishment. These high-risk and accident-prone areas include locations where fires can break out as well as locations where a potential danger to the building and personnel exist. Properly selected cameras can prevent potential damage because emergency measures can be taken immediately with careful monitoring.

  1. Assist Law Enforcement

CCTV recording of the scene of the crime, allow law enforcement agencies to use the footage and release photos and videos of the culprits to the public. A picture or a video record of the suspect can make a huge difference when it comes to making an arrest and getting dangerous criminals off the street.

So there you have it! We hope that we have enlightened you on the importance of CCTV Security Systems for your business. If you wish to know more about CCTV systems, check out our article on How to Select the Correct CCTV Camera to Use?

How to Select the Correct CCTV Camera to Use?

There are literally thousands of camera models from hundreds of approved manufacturers available in the market, and this makes the selection of the most appropriate CCTV camera to use a very confusing issue.

In this article, I will try to explain very simply the different parameters you need to look into when selecting a CCTV camera for your project, as well as the required knowledge to determine if what you are being offered really matches what you expect or not.

Please note that I will be discussing IP Cameras here and not analog. As explained in my previous article “Analog CCTV vs IP Cameras – What’s the Correct Choice?” – analog CCTV is not recommended anymore.

Key parameters for selecting the proper type of CCTV camera:

1) Outdoor/Indoor: One of the parameters that can be easily filtered by available choices is whether the camera is for indoor or outdoor use. While it is essential to use an “outdoor” type camera for outdoor installations to provide IP65/IP66 weather protection, “indoor” cameras are less bulky and more cost effective for indoor installations.


2) Coverage Area / Target Distance: The second most important parameter in selecting the correct type of camera is to determine the coverage area and target distance for each camera in your system. Below are some of the key camera parameters that will be determined based on the coverage area / target distance:

  • Fixed vs PTZ: PTZ (Pan-Tilt-Zoom) cameras as the name suggests give the possibility to user to turn the camera view to any needed direction and to zoom on specific areas. They can be also pre-programmed to automatically scan specific routes. On the other hand, fixed cameras provide constant uninterrupted monitoring of a specific, fixed area like entrances and exits or perimeters.

Type of Lens: the type of lens determines the angle width and the distance that each camera can cover. As a rule of thumb, the wider the coverage angle is, the less distance is covered by the camera. Using a vari-focal lens enables you to adjust these two parameters of the camera in practice. There are also 180 degrees or 360 degrees fisheye cameras that are used indoors for providing a wider coverage.

180 Panoramic View

360 Fisheye View

3) Image Resolution: in IP cameras, this is determined by number of pixels (color dots) that each camera image consists of. The higher the image resolution, the more image details is captured and provided by the camera. At the same time, more storage capacity would be required for recording. The current common resolutions these days start from 720p HD (1280 x 720 pixels) and go up to 5MP (5 Megapixel or 2592 x 1944 pixels).

Camera Resolution Chart

Advantage of IP Cameras

4) Night Vision / IR: If you require capturing video in darkness, then you should look for cameras with day/night and IR (infrared) lighting configurations. IR cameras use infrared LEDs that are lit automatically when dark and enable the camera to capture black & white video in complete darkness. The coverage of cameras in the darkness is determined by the power of their IR light which is a parameter you should look into when selecting such cameras.

Security Cameras with Nightvision

5) Camera Housing: camera housing is also an important factor to consider when selecting your camera. Below are the main types:

  • Dome Cameras: Dome cameras are used both for indoors and outdoors for both fixed and PTZ cameras. They have a nice look and it is also hard to determine which direction the camera is pointing at.

  • Box Cameras: These cameras are also used both indoors and outdoors and are the standard type of security cameras we all have an image of in mind. The lens and direction of the cameras are clearly visible and clearly show everyone that the location is under CCTV surveillance.

  • Bullet Cameras: These are small, cylindrical type, waterproof housings that are usually used for outdoor cameras especially when you don’t want the cameras to capture much attention.

6) Vulnerability: Apart from indoor/outdoor type of cameras, you might also want to select “vandal-resistant” cameras that come with very-hard-to-break glass covers to protect the camera against vandalism. There are also Explosion-proof cameras that are extremely expensive and protect the camera against explosions.

7) Other features: In addition to above main parameters, new IP cameras also come with a constantly-expanding list of new features and enhancements – these include video analytic and enhancement features, web interface for direct view and remote monitoring and control, automatic alert notifications via email and SMS, and even internal NVR for recording of videos. So these are also the parameters you might want to check into.

Please note while I’ve tried to focus only on the key factors, it is also important to emphasize that designing a professional CCTV solution still requires a high level of expertise and experience and it is always worth it to have a professional company involved in designing the proper CCTV solution tailored for your needs.

Analog CCTV vs IP Cameras – What’s the Correct Choice?

If you search on the internet, you can find many disputes about Analog CCTV vs Digital IP Cameras. The main question is this: Are IP Cameras the sole players in the future of CCTV, or are there still some good reasons for implementing analog cameras?

oday, I see many CCTV designs proposed for buildings that are based on analog CCTV solutions. Unlike some designers who still propose analog cameras, I can undoubtedly confirm that the future of CCTV surveillance solutions is with IP-based systems. Nevertheless there are still rare cases where one might decide to propose an analog camera – I’ll give a hint on those as well at the end of this article.

In this article, I want to quickly go over this topic and provide an easy-to-understand explanation.

The key difference between analog CCTV and IP Cameras

Without going into too much of technical explanations, the two systems can be quickly defined as below:

  • Analog cameras transfer the video signals in analog form (electrical signals), usually use coaxial cables for the cabling, and have the videos recorded by a DVR (Digital Video Recorder), where each single camera is directly connected to the DVR.
  • IP cameras encode the video signal into IP packets, use the data network (LAN) for the cabling, and have the videos recorded by an NVR (Network Video Recorder) that can be connected anywhere on the network.

Both type of cameras use the same mechanism for capturing the video by their CCD sensor, and the main difference is the method by which the video signal is transmitted.

Benefits of IP Cameras over Analog CCTV

  1. Higher image quality: Unlike a few years ago, where cameras have poor video resolution, now we have mega-pixel IP cameras that totally outmatch any analog camera solution. The higher pixel resolution of the IP cameras means you can zoom into much more details of a scene even after it is recorded, without losing clarity.
  2. Unified cabling infrastructure: by utilizing the same LAN network infrastructure, IP cameras can be deployed usually with no need for major re-cabling. It also enables utilizing different network mediums such as wireless and fiber links seamlessly.
  3. No major interference / distortion hassle: in analog systems, especially when the cameras are over a few hundred meters/feet away from the DVR, interference and distortion due to electrical noises, poor quality connections, and ground loop effects can cause tricky situations requiring extensive effort to overcome. With IP cameras, one won’t need to bother about interferences / image quality issues.
  4. Power arrangements: IP cameras can be mostly powered over the same network cable through POE (Power Over Ethernet) by simply connecting them to a POE-capable network switch, eliminating the need for separate source of power. This is not the case in analog cameras, where each camera would need separate power source.
  5. Easy management: IP cameras can be easily managed and controlled remotely. This considerably simplifies and speeds up troubleshooting of the system. One can easily check the connectivity of each individual camera over the network using a laptop with proper authentication, while in analog cameras physical attendance to each camera and using of separate monitoring tools is a must.
  6. Lots of extra features: New IP cameras come with a constantly-expanding list of new features and enhancements – these include video analytic and enhancement features, web interface for direct view and remote monitoring and control, automatic alert notifications via email and SMS and even internal NVR for recording of videos.

When can I still consider Analog Cameras?

With all technology enhancements, many of the arguments justifying analog cameras are not valid anymore and belong to the past. Arguments such as analog cameras have better image quality or costs less were valid a couple of years ago, but not anymore.

But there are two design conditions when one might still justify an analog camera solution:

  1. Very small systems for small shops: If you want a very simple and cost effective setup to include up to 4 cameras connected with a very short cables to a DVR to setup a basic surveillance for a small shop, analog cameras are probably still considerable for 1-2 more years.
  2. Distributed, distant cameras with no existing network infrastructure: There might be some rare cases where a simple surveillance solution is needed where there are a few cameras distributed in different directions and with several hundred meters/feet distance from the control room. In such cases, if there is no network infrastructure available, one might still consider an analog camera solution for the sake of lower costs of implementation.

Conclusion: After reading this article, if you see a designer proposing you a camera system based on “coaxial cables” – you can confidently conclude that you are in wrong hands!