Category Archives for "Video Surveillance"

Burglary Rise among Indian Households in Overland Park

We have seen a number of news reports and have heard from many of our clients, that there has been an increase in burglaries and home invasions with members of the Indian community as the victims.  This is clearly a disturbing trend and the goal of this posting is to provide some ideas to help everyone be a little safer, especially as the holidays approach.  As is always the case, be mindful of your surroundings and anything or anyone that seems out of place.  Safety usually starts with what we refer to as the three-D’s, Deterrence, Denial, and Detection.

Deterrence means to make yourself a less desirable target:

  • Make it look like you are home, even when you aren’t
  • Have security signs and decals posted so would-be intruders know the house is protected
  • Keep home well lit and keep doors and windows clearly visible
  • Keep valuables out of sight

Denial means making it harder to break in:

  • Always keep doors and windows locked
  • Put deadbolts on exterior doors
  • Put sticks in tracks of sliding doors and windows

Detection:

  • Consider an monitored security system to rapidly alert you and police in the event of a break-in
  • Consider a video camera as a deterrent and an aid to apprehension and prosecution
  • Also keep an eye on neighbors houses for unusual activity

For more ideas, you can request a free copy of our home security checklist or contact us for a free in home security assessment.

Article by Tony Thurnam g+

Mega-Pixel Security Cameras

Video surveillance has made tremendous advances in the last five years.  One of the significant advances is in IP video surveillance.  IP or internet prootcol has revolutionized video surveillance in several different respects.

  1. Quality.  IP cameras are able to achieve resolutions of 8 mega-pixels or more.  That is higher than high-definition TV and 100 times the standard resolution (320×200) that many CCTV systems support.  This resolution is extremely valuable for two types of applications.  First, any application where detail is important, like point of sale, facial recognition and licence plate recognition will benefit from the ultra high resolution.  Second, One IP camera can provide the same coverage as more than 10 traditional cctv cameras in applications where large areas are to me monitored like warehouses and factories.
  2. Simplicity.  IP cameras can utilize existing IT infrastructure for connectivity.  This reduces the expense and speeds installation.  Many can also utilize POE or Power over ethernet so that separate power is not even required by the cameras.
  3. Analytics.  IP cameras also benefit from advanced analytics.  That means that complex processing can be done like tying cash register transactions to video, tracking people and vehicles, reading license plates, and much more.
  4. Evolution to IP.  There are several products that are helping client migrate to IP.  Hybrid DVRs can terminate a combination of IP and analog security cameras so that you can leverage your existing investment and tailor the system to leverage the benefits of both technologies.  Cat 5 transmission is now possible on analog cctv cameras which means that you can use ethernet cabling for analog cameras today and then reuse it for IP cameras in the future.
  5. Cost.  The cost Of mega pixel systems continues to drop and is now between 2 and three times the cost of traditional systems, but with far greater performance, depending on the application.

In conclusion, IP cameras are a remarkable tool for many applicaitons, but traditional analog cameras are rugged, reliable, and cost effective, so they’ll likely be around for years to come.

Home Security Cameras

Kansas City homeowners are becoming evermore proactive about protecting their homes and families.  One step in this evolution is the use of video surveillance.  There are 4 main reasons that people choose video surveillance:

  1. Deterrent: Security cameras are an excellent deterrent.  Most trespassers and would-be intruders want to avoid being seen at all cost.  The presence of security cameras sends a strong signal that security is taken seriously at that home and that the cameras are probably just the first line of defense.  The risk of being apprehended is certainly enough of a deterrent to discourage many intruders.
  2. Apprehension: Security cameras are also an important tool in apprehending wrong-doers.  Some clients who have an ongoing problem with crime prefer to use covert cameras to catch the perpetrator in the act so that they can be prosecuted.  This is often a case in stalking scenarios, or ongoing disputes.  In the latter case, often vandalism is being done at night and the home owner wants to prove who is doing it.
  3. Peace of mind:  Being able to check in on your home while you are away offers a great deal of comfort to some.  Perhaps making sure their pets are OK or just to make sure that everything is normal.  A camera outdoors even gives one the ability to watch the kids playing in the yard from a TV, computer or smartphone.

Part of the reason for the surge in popularity is the dramatic drop in prices as well as the introduction of smart-phone and internet access to these systems.  A traditional system will be composed of a digital video recorder (DVR), a power supply, and cameras.  The DVR will normally have 4, 8, or 16 inputs on it where the camera cables are to be connected.  It then has a hard drive, just like a computer, on which the video is stored.  There is usually an ethernet port so that the video can be viewed over the internet as well.

Selection and installation of the security cameras is what determines the value of the surveillance system.  There are many different factors that influence the selection of security cameras. Some of the factors that effect camera selection include the lighting, resolution, distance, mounting conditions, temperature, and vandalism risk.

Security camera selection and installation are where the complexity lies and often relying on a video surveillance consultant and a professional installer can help produce the desired results.

A new security camera solution that is gaining popularity is called hosted video.   With hosted video surveillance, there is no need for the DVR.  Instead, the video clips are stored on the internet (Cloud) each time a selected event, such as motion is triggered.  The recording can also be triggered by security system events such as opening a door or disarming the system.  Such a feature would be valuable for making sure that latch key kids arrived home safely.  You could have a video clip emailed to you each time the door was opened while you were away to know who was coming and going.  This video/security integration is also available on the traditional DVR based systems described above, but require outputs from the security panel to be wired to the DVR to trigger.

The video clips are stored on the internet and can even be automatically emailed.  For small systems, this is very economical because the home owner avoids the expense of the DVR.  Many of these cameras also can be connected via ethernet or Wi-Fi, to make installation even easier.

Seniors Monitoring Solutions help Loved Ones Stay in their Homes Longer

A topic you are going to see covered frequently here is that of “Aging in Place.”  There are many organizations that define this phrase, but to me it is the application of a variety of solutions with a goal of helping seniors live longer, happier, and safer lives within their own homes.  Home security systems can be extended to provide a great deal of support toward this goal.

Their are several considerations that infuence ones ability to stay at home.  Things like wellness and mobility are obvious factors in determining one’s independence, but many adaptations are possible with thoughtful design.

One area that needs to be addressed is making sure that the individual can get the help they need when they need it.  There are many different circumstance that can force one to need assistance and a monitoring system should be put in place that addresses as many of these as practical.  Regular home visits by trained caregivers is one valuable measure.  Modern technology can offer several powerful yet very affordable solutions as well.

Medical pagers that give the ability to summon help are another useful tool.  The Life Sentry pager is unique in that a push of a button can connect the user to a certified EMT that can access their situation and dispatch the appropriate help.  The advance here is that the conversation can take place right over the pendant which can be worn outdoors or in the shower.  The previous versions of such devices required that the individual be able to get all the way back to a centrally located base station in order to communicate with the central station.

In home activity tracking is an exciting new area that allows family members or caregivers to monitor the activity within the home to assess whether a departure from the norm warrants action or at least a phone call.  Email alerts can be sent as the individual moves from room to room, opens the medicine cabinet, or leaves the house.  This allows their loved ones to have peace of mind that things are normal and to determine when things might not be.  The monitoring doesn’t stop there though.  It can also alert authorities and family members of fire, carbon monoxide, or intrusion threats.

Video surveillance is another technology that has gained an enormous amount of momentum in the residential market lately.  Low prices and remote viewing over the internet and smart phones have made this a popular addition to a home’s electronic security.  Again, the value is one of providing the peace of mind that comes with knowing everything is OK.

Another important adaptation that allows individuals to stay at home longer is the removal of barriers to everyday living that may exist within the home.  These might be areas that are not wheel chair accessible.  I had the pleasure of speaking with experts at Lifewise Renovations  at their showroom, where they showed me how various remodelling techniques are helping individuals stay in their homes longer.  One of the things that struck me, was that many of these adaptations, while very functional, are practically invisible, so people can implement these universal design concepts at any time.

You can learn more about these concepts or request a consultation at Shield Security Systems.

SHIELD Security Systems | 7111 W. 151st Street, Suite 30 | Overland Park, KS 66223 | (913) 667-7500