The right to privacy is one of our most cherished rights. And yet security cameras in the workplace serve a very important purpose. Employers need to have the ability to protect their property, and assets, and to keep their employees safe, and security cameras are a great tool for accomplishing this.
There are plenty of issues to keep in mind if you are considering installing security cameras in your business. You have a right to protect your assets, yet employees have a right to a certain level of privacy.
Let’s take a look at a few things to consider before installing surveillance equipment for monitoring employees.
Are you thinking of installing cameras in the workplace to monitor your employees? Before you do, make sure you’re not violating any laws. Here’s everything you need to know about the lawful use of video surveillance in the workplace.
The average employee likely understands that employers have a need to install video surveillance cameras for security purposes. However, these same employees have no desire to give up their right to a reasonable amount of privacy.
Employees should never be made to feel uncomfortable by being recorded during their most private moments. Business owners should always notify employees of the placement of surveillance cameras, and only install these cameras when there is a genuine need. And above all, hidden cameras should never be allowed.
Most people would expect there to be laws on cameras in the workplace to protect their privacy. Some states, like California, have laws protecting employees from an employer installing a video camera behind mirrors, in fitting rooms, in showers, or in restrooms.
Believe it or not, there are no state laws that specifically prohibit video camera surveillance in the workplace. While the employer might feel a genuine need to monitor employee behavior and to provide a certain level of security, employees have the right to feel that their privacy is being protected during such activities as using the restroom, changing clothes, or during union meetings.
The decision to install security cameras in the workplace is not something to be taken lightly. It can very easily create an environment of paranoia and distrust among employees. Employees naturally don’t like the feeling that they are being monitored at all times, and this can have a direct impact on the quality of employee performance as well as employee retention.
If you’re an employer, be sure to educate yourself on your state’s privacy laws before installing video cameras in the workplace. It’s crucial to make ensure that your employees feel that you value their right to privacy while at the same time having the ability to protect your assets.
Try to find a balance between privacy and security that will make everyone feel comfortable.
Click here to see important reasons for investing in security monitoring.
With over 360,000 robberies every year, security cameras have become more of a necessity now than they ever were before. However, cameras do so much more than document crime.
They can help to improve the bottom line and employee satisfaction.
Here are 5 ways security cameras have benefited businesses.
First, much like a loud and scary dog, security cameras are great at deterring potential criminals.
Losses from shoplifting and robberies are much less likely to occur if the facility has visible cameras and other security protections.
The more hurdles a criminal needs to jump through or avoid in order to get what they want they less likely they are to commit that crime. In fact, cameras effectively discourage people from specific crimes such as graffiti, vandalism, and shoplifting.
However, even with cameras, these crimes sometimes still occur. Another benefit to installing these systems is to increase security and documentation when situations do arise.
The video from the security camera has often helped police officers identify the suspects involved. This will help your business receive the best compensation for the events that occur.
The third way that cameras are helpful is that they help collect information for your business.
With your cameras you can now know how often products are broken, the way your customers are treated, and much more.
According to recent studies, over $100 billion worth of products are mishandled or broken every year. Knowing how much your business is losing in problems like this can help you gain a greater profit margin.
Cameras can help you identify these problems.
The next way cameras help you is by motivating employees. Some employees have a special can do attitude that pushes them to always try their best. Others do not.
Cameras help those employees that struggle with the sometimes monotonous workload. Knowing that someone might be watching is a great way to encourage employees to always act their best, especially if they are around customers.
Also, if a dispute occurs with a customer, you’ll now have the evidence to support either side.
The last way cameras help your business is by improving the customer experience.
Cameras can help you monitor where people are in the store. This is helpful because you can then push the employees to the areas where there is a lot of foot traffic.
Cameras aren’t just important for your own management. It also helps your customers feel more comfortable as well. Check out some unique reasons video is crucial for your business.
At the very least installing cameras can add a little bit of humor to your day as well. Check out these 15 priceless experiences caught on tape.
Security cameras are becoming increasingly more affordable and advanced. However, they aren’t the only security system you need to invest in. Here are some trending security features that you need to incorporate into your business.
However, when talking about security the first place to start is with cameras.
Do you have any questions about how to improve your business’ security? Comment below! We can’t wait to help you find the best system for your brand.
Peace of mind is a luxury that many business owners would call priceless. Fire, theft, and medical emergencies are all concerns that can plague a business if it is unprepared.
For those unforeseen and worrisome situations, a security monitoring system can be the difference between profit and loss, or life and death. Here are several reasons why your business should consider investing in a security monitoring system.
Modern security systems are nothing like the dated systems of yesteryear.
New security systems remove the need for invasive drilling and are wireless, making for easy and quick installation. This also makes the entire system more resilient to wire cutting and power outages.
Advances in technology also extend to the monitoring centers, which are there to help 24/7. These centers are staffed by professionals trained to help, no matter the circumstances. They are also backed up by on-site power generators, ensuring that they are always available.
Additionally, dispatch doesn’t have to be done over the phone in the event that lines are down. Since many people don’t even own landlines, transmissions or back up monitoring can be done through a high-speed internet connection or a cellular connection.
A study regarding retail theft concluded that about six million people are arrested each year for stealing, and about a sixth of those people were employees stealing from their own companies. That doesn’t even account for the millions that are getting away with the crime.
Security systems can also work in conjunction with surveillance systems to ensure that merchandise doesn’t just grow legs and walk out the door. After all, employee theft can be just as bad, if not worse, than theft from outside sources.
Theft will never be completely stomped out, but a security system can be the difference between someone walking away with nothing, and someone walking away with thousands of dollars in stolen goods.
The safety of an employee should be of the utmost importance. And the mere presence of video surveillance could help deter acts of sexual harassment or acts of violence that would otherwise threaten the safety of employees. Like motion activated lights coming on outside the home, often a security system is enough to deter terrible behavior.
Modern security monitoring systems provide numerous other services that work together to monitor the following:
Worse case scenario, there’s a fire or medical emergency and someone needs help. Wouldn’t you feel better knowing that there was a system put in place that ensured help would always be called when needed?
Security systems have come a long way. They can deter theft and crime, provide 24/7 service, and can provide comprehensive monitoring for a wide variety of factors. They can even save lives.
Our company can do all of that while also providing day to day service and assistance in emergency situations.
If you are a business interested in investing in peace of mind, you owe to yourself to look into a security monitoring system.
Criminals are known for being sneaky. Being smart? Not so much.
Video security can help deter criminal threats. It can help to hand out proper punishment to wrongdoers. Sometimes, footage can even help bring killers to justice.
Keep reading to find out 5 reasons that you should have surveillance in your business.
75% of employees steal. While you’ll never eliminate internal shrinkage, cameras will certainly, well, shrink it!
Being monitored will also increase productivity as workers are less likely to slack if they know they’re being watched.
While the occasional junkie or other desperate-for-cash types might not care about video, the majority of people would rather not be in jail.
Well displayed cameras paired with well-hidden ones can be a great combination for determent and catching people with sticky fingers.
It’s hard to ignore what you can see with your own eyes. Most juries agree. So will most anyone working for an insurance company. Having video security could reduce your insurance rates. Possession of the necessary footage to back up your claim can make it nearly irrefutable.
People can lie. Technology has a harder time being deceitful.
Sexual harassment case or lawsuit? Cameras with audio can clear that mess up quickly.
A security team may or may not be required for your business.
Using a small army of cameras to fulfill your surveillance needs enables the eyes in the sky to catch nearly everything.
This purchase can be a large investment but the ROI over time is invaluable.
Thanks to modern technology, cameras can be used with mobile devices. A small, efficient security team can handle most situations with a mobile surveillance set-up.
Do you have a large parking lot? Is your business open in the evenings and/or at night?
This is the kind of setting that is perfect for congregators. Don’t let a few unruly high school kids deter your evening business.
With proper video security and a few trespassing tickets, you can handle this situation and others like it easily and without confrontation.
If you have a restricted space where someone needs to be “buzzed in” or access is only allowed for certain individuals, installing cameras can help monitor these areas.
Keeping your assets and sensitive tech or documents under a constant surveillance will give investors and clients the reassurance they need to continue doing business with you.
The most important decision that you have as a business owner is picking out what type of system you need.
Outdoor security requires a different type of camera than indoor. Large areas require a different set-up than small ones. There are many options available.
The tech may be an investment but so is the firm you hire.
Some outfits only do the installation. The quality groups will also offer monitoring services.
Research the needs of your business before deciding on a security package.
If you have anything to add to this post, leave a comment below to tell us about your video security experiences. We would love to hear from you!
Whether you need to monitor your business or your home, video surveillance systems offer a number of benefits.
They can help you protect your property, by either deterring criminals or capturing the crime on camera. They can offer you a measure of legal protection, or even help with insurance claims.
Or they can simply be there to give you peace of mind and make you, your family or your employees feel a little more protected.
But deciding what type of video surveillance system you should buy can be confusing and even overwhelming.
We’ve laid out some of the most important factors to consider. If you follow this guide and do some planning ahead, you can find a system that is perfect for your needs.
The first step when choosing between video surveillance systems is determining the size of your space you want to monitor. This will determine whether you go with a single or multiple camera set up.
If you need to monitor a wide open space, consider going with a camera that offers panoramic views.
It helps if you plan out your space and make note of all the areas that need to included in the camera’s frame. Consider not just the obvious entrances such as doorways, but any other points that could be used, such as windows.
Another factor to consider is whether or not you need your cameras to be hidden.
Some situations call for cameras that don’t draw attention, so that information can be gathered discreetly.
On the other hand, some situations are better suited for cameras that are seen clearly. Larger, more obvious cameras can be used not only for surveillance but can possibly act as a deterrent to any criminal activity.
When considering different types of video surveillance systems, the lighting in your space is an important factor.
If you need surveillance for an area that has poor lighting, especially at night, then you need to go with a camera that supports that scenario.
When looking at different systems, check their “lux” rating. This number tells you how good the system is at operating in low light. Additionally, some models have infrared systems.
Don’t just think about low lighting either. Other lighting factors such as glares and reflections need to be taken into consideration.
While there are surveillance systems that are versatile and can be used both indoor and outdoor, some models are tailored for one in particular.
Outdoor cameras need to be built to handle tough situations. This means any harsh weather, such as rain or freezing weather. On top of the weather, outdoor cameras are more likely to be tampered with or damaged by someone and need to be able to withstand that.
Even if you just need an indoor camera, determine whether or not it needs extra protective housing.
Choosing how you want to record and store your video is another step, as well as how you can view your images and recordings.
Some systems will operate with built in memory cards. This works for those using a single camera system and doesn’t have the need for a lot of memory space.
The other option is connecting your camera/cameras to a separate digital video recorder (DVR) or a network video recorder (NVR). A DVR or NVR is a better choice if you need to store a lot of recordings.
If you want to have live view access to your cameras from a remote location, then go with an IP (internet protocol) camera. As long as there is internet access, these cameras allow you to check your site using your computer, smartphone, tablet or smart tv.
Trying to find a surveillance system that works best for you can seem overwhelming, considering all of the options available to you.
If you just follow these steps and carefully consider your needs, you can choose a system that works best for your needs. And choosing the right system will give you peace of mind knowing that you are protected.
If you have any questions about a video surveillance system or what would best suit your situation, contact us today and we can help.
For several years, IP video surveillance manufacturers evangelized “the megapixel value proposition,” which is:
“The ability to see more detail with fewer cameras, thereby lowering the cost of the video surveillance system.”
The assertion is that by using fewer cameras, all associated costs of the system are lowered, including labor, cabling and licenses. With the development of the HD analog video standards AHD, TVI and CVI, IP video surveillance has lost its ownership of the megapixel value proposition.
Is more resolution always better? The question really is, “What do you want to see?”
We talk about “pixels on target” or “pixels per foot.” The math involved is to determine how much resolution is needed in the field of view in order to see what you want to see. If you have not experienced this calculator at IPVMS.com, you should.
Sometimes, the video surveillance application may be for the security operator to be able to see that someone is walking around (general surveillance). Other times, the application is to capture a level of detail that could be used as evidence: capturing recognizable “faces” and readable “plates” (license plates).
Today, by swapping out the DVR and adding some HD analog cameras, a traditional CCTV system over coaxial cable can produce 1080p and higher resolution video. With RG59 cable, runs of up to 1640-feet are possible (about the height of the Empire State Building).
Integrators and end users no longer need to choose between IP and coax infrastructure in order to get the benefits of clear, detailed HD video. They are able to plan for the resolution and field of view that will best meet the need, regardless of the preferred infrastructure.
Orginally posted on Digital Watchdog
Digital Watchdog, the industry leader in digital recorders, surveillance cameras and related management software, announces the release of the new DW Mobile Witness™ mobile application for iOS smart phones and tablets. The DW Mobile Witness™ app turns the camera on a supported smartphone or tablet into a surveillance camera that can be viewed and recorded with a Digital Watchdog® VMAX IP PLUS™ PoE Network Video Recorder (NVR).
“Imagine, a security officer on patrol can now transmit and record his point of view using his smartphone as a security camera, like a personal ‘black box,’” said Mark Espenschied, Director of Marketing, Digital Watchdog. “The recording of what he sees is in synchronization with the video from the other video cameras connected to the system. If there is an incident, the video evidence is available from all available angles.”
VMAX IP Plus™, the best PoE NVR for small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMB), keeps getting better. The DW Mobile Witness™ app joins Three-Minute Installation, CCIP™ password-encrypted camera streams, thumbnail search, performance monitoring, system analysis and easy PathFinder™ Peer-to-Peer Mobile Access as dynamic features that set the VMAX IP Plus™ apart from the competition.
There must be an available channel on the VMAX IP Plus™ NVR. Enter into the app the URL of the NVR, the NVR’s User ID and Password. If the phone or tablet is connected to the Internet (via 3G or 4G), the device’s camera now appears on the NVR and is being recorded. The app is now available on the Apple® App Store. Support for audio will be added in October, with an Android® app coming in November.
Article originally published on ArecontVision.com
World-class service, sublime surroundings, and luxury within reach are all things you’ll find at Davenport Hotels in downtown Spokane, Washington. The four-hotel collection runs the gamut from classic to contemporary, full-size to boutique, and historic to modern. Guests can enjoy luxurious spa, wedding, and business facilities, as well as some of the best dining in the city.
Opened in June, 2015, the new 716 room Davenport Grand Hotel offers a unique alternative for travelers who seek a reprieve from the traditional, uninspiring hotel environment. The Davenport Grand provides a lifestyle hotel experience in a highly social atmosphere rich in cutting-edge design, energy, and comfort. Crafted to appeal to both business and leisure travelers, the Davenport Grand combines the dynamic qualities of urban living with best-in-industry services and amenities in a unique setting. The new Davenport Grand embraces the glorious past of the Davenport Hotel with a bold, modern spirit and joins the historic Davenport Hotel, Davenport Tower, and Davenport Lusso family.
Davenport Hotels has relied on an analog video surveillance system for the existing hotel facilities and structures. For the new Davenport Grand Hotel, hotel management wanted to ensure the safety and security of its guests, employees, and visitors while helping to prevent theft and other loss.
It was also important to be able to capture images of the vehicles that come and go from the public garage used by hotel guests. This would enable the hotel to better deal with potential vehicle damage claims, which is a common issue in the hospitality industry.
Each of the Davenport Grand’s planned camera applications would require highly detailed video, and the management team knew from the start that an analog surveillance system would not be sufficient.
“We have other hotels that have analog cameras installed, so getting a more current system with clarity was a priority. We decided we’re not going to invest in an older system,” said Kevin Miller, Corporate Director of Security for the Davenport Collection of Properties.
Instead, an IP megapixel surveillance camera solution would be required.
Working with Spokane-based security firm A-TEC, the hotel narrowed its potential choices down to three camera vendors, each of which submitted a bid for the video surveillance system project. After evaluating all of the products included in the bids, the hotel chose IP megapixel cameras from Arecont Vision, primarily based on image quality. Exacq was chosen as the video management software.
“If we’re going to build a new surveillance system, we need to make sure that if we have an incident, we can actually see who was involved,” said Miller. “We wanted an innately high-quality, flexible solution, and we got it with Arecont Vision.”
Hotel management had a system design in mind, which Kevin Jetton, A-TEC’s President, was able to refine based on what he saw after touring the facility. According to Jetton, the changes were largely based on the ability to cut the hotel’s costs without sacrificing camera coverage.
“We pride ourselves on determining what the areas of concern are, how we are going to address them, and what cameras will do the best job,” Jetton said. “We realized we could incorporate SurroundVideo Omni and other Arecont Vision megapixel cameras to lower the camera count and increase overall views.”
Before moving forward with the modified design, A-TEC set up a software solution in conjunction with demo cameras provided by Kyle Kayler of Arecont Vision. These were used for test shots to provide to hotel management the types of views they would be able to get with the cameras Jetton recommended.
“Once we were able to get it all set up and show them what they were going to get with the reduced camera counts and increased camera views, they were definitely on board,” Jetton said. “I knew what solution needed to be proposed. My partnership with Arecont Vision is unprecedented, and I knew that presenting the Davenport with this solution was going to be a success because we were all working together.”
The overall installation included nearly 70 Arecont Vision cameras, all of which were deployed to suit the individual areas in which they were to be used. The installed cameras are from several Arecont Vision families.
Throughout the installation, A-TEC remained in close contact with Kevin Miller and hotel management to ensure that they knew the details of the project’s progress and to demonstrate the evolving system as cameras were deployed. Stuart Wells of A-TEC led the onsite installation and integration of the system, working with the Davenport team.
“A-TEC did test shots for us before the hotel was even finished so we could see the exact depth, range, and view that we were going to get with each camera,” Miller said.
Davenport Hotels had a number of safety and security goals for its new surveillance system in the Davenport Grand. Hotel management wanted to ensure that the cameras wouldn’t be the first thing guests noticed. With their high quality and their sleek, unobtrusive design, the Arecont Vision cameras have met those needs.
“We certainly didn’t want to give people the feeling that they’re being watched throughout the hotel,” Miller said. “We really like how the low profile of the cameras and the multi-sensor capabilities enabled us to use just one camera opposed to four separate ones.”
Shortly after the installation was completed, Jetton conducted a test to see just how unobtrusive the surveillance system was.
“I took two visitors with me to do a walk-through of the hotel when the installation was first completed and I challenged them to find the cameras. On many different occasions they didn’t even notice that they were in the camera views,” he said. “People are there to relax and enjoy their time away; they don’t want to feel like they are being watched by cameras.”
The Arecont Vision cameras have allowed the Davenport Grand to take a more proactive and preventative approach to security, something that would have been missing from an analog surveillance system.
“We can see activity and hopefully stop and report behavior to prevent things from happening,” Miller said.
In terms of return on investment, the ability to avoid claims for which the hotel is not responsible has been a major benefit of the new system in the Davenport Grand. This has been particularly the case with the vehicle valet service.
“With the valet service, customers will come in and claim that marks on their vehicle weren’t there when they arrived, and quite honestly, they may believe that’s true. With the Arecont Vision cameras, we’re able to look at the video and say with confidence whether the mark was there when he or she arrived at the hotel,” Miller said.
The cameras have also helped with a number of instances of items disappearing from the exterior of the hotel. In one example, the Davenport Grand was able to provide the local police department with video which led to the items being returned and the thieves apprehended.
In addition to the Davenport Grand’s potential cost reduction from a lower camera count, savings were realized in other areas as a result of the new surveillance system which is monitored on the premises.
“What’s really nice is we can actually view the cameras from several different locations in real-time or in playback,” Miller said. “These cameras help reduce our on-floor manpower and increase our effectiveness because there can be one person on the floor and another person who is watching the cameras, who can cover 10 times more area than one person can on foot.”
Digital Watchdog, the industry leader in digital recorders, surveillance cameras and related management software, has announced the release of a new app for Apple TV devices.The DW Site Viewer lets you view a Digital Watchdog surveillance system using an Apple TV. Our new DW Site Viewer was demonstrated at the ISC West Security Industry Trade Show, April 6-8, 2016, in Las Vegas, Nevada.
“Digital Watchdog has pioneered remote access to surveillance systems from anywhere and at any time using a computer, smart phone or tablet,” said Mark Espenschied, Director of Marketing, Digital Watchdog. “The ability to easily access your cameras using an Apple TV again demonstrates our commitment to make video for security and productivity easy for our customers.”
The new app makes it possible to quickly enter and save the information for one or multiple surveillance sites and then choose to monitor the cameras from one of those sites with the click of a button. The DW Site Viewer app for Apple TV joins the DW Mobile™ apps, DW VMAX™ app, DW Spectrum™ app, DW Spectrum IPVMS client and Pivot™ CMS as convenient ways to view your Digital Watchdog cameras remotely.
Contact South Bay Communications & Security for more information on Digital Watchdogs video security solutions for businesses. Our experts are standing by ready to answer any questions you may have.