CCTV (closed circuit television) cameras have become more publicly palatable and subsequently less intimidating as the years have wore on. Where they were once primarily used only in high security prisons and industrial estates, CCTV surveillance systems are now almost commonplace, with perpetually rising levels of technology resulting in far cheaper systems and far greater availability. If you own a small business or live in an area with a high crime rate and are looking to install your own CCTV system then we’re here to inform you that it’s not quite as daunting (or expensive) as you might think. You may be asking yourself at this point why you need a surveillance system or if you can afford it, but rest assured there are numerous brands (Bosch, Hikvision etc.) that offer surprisingly affordable CCTV systems for public use that are easy to install and even easier to operate and maintain.
Below we’ll examine all facets of the CCTV market in detail and in the process, will hopefully soothe any trepidation you might feel towards buying into it.
The Birth of CCTV
German engineer Walter Bruch designed the very first CCTV system which was installed in Peenemunde, Germany in 1942 for observing rocket launches, but the technology wasn’t used elsewhere for another 30 years when a system was installed by the NYPD in New York Cities Times Square. The system wasn’t particularly successful as the crime rate was barely affected but nevertheless it was seen as a cheaper alternative to hiring a larger police force so systems were implemented across the country throughout the 1980’s. These early systems lacked most of the features we take for granted today (such as infrared, time lapse and megapixel sensors) but as people learned how to use them effectively, crime rates started to improve and the real benefits of the systems started to reveal themselves. By the 90s, use of the systems spread to the United Kingdom and beyond.
A CCTV camera works in a different manner to a conventional video broadcast camera in that it is designed to transmit a signal to a specific place (or places) and is generally not openly transmitted outside of the immediate area, unless the signal has been hacked. However, with increasing security measures built into most modern models, this is slowly becoming an obsolete problem. CCTV could technically be used in a variety of situations but is most commonly used for surveillance in areas that require around the clock monitoring. Most modern CCTV systems now use their own bespoke computer systems and software. Most modern CCTV systems will use a DVR (digital video recording) system that will allow thousands of hours of recordings to be stored for years.
Industry providers from corner shops to military installations, casinos to airports use CCTV surveillance as a deterrent and as a monitoring system for preventing theft. However, CCTV systems can also be often found in situations where monitoring is required in an environment that isn’t suitable for human beings. The transport industry also uses CCTV systems to monitor traffic, detecting congestion and noticing accidents so that they can be dealt with quickly and efficiently. Contrary to popular belief, most CCTV cameras in operation across the UK are not used as ‘speed cameras’, but are actually used to help make traffic flow more smoothly and with fewer accidents. Of course the most common use for CCTV is crime prevention and whilst many might baulk at the idea of being constantly monitored, the results speak for themselves with a 51% decrease in parking lot crime, a 23% decrease in public transportation crime and a 7% decrease in overall public area crime since CCTV was widely implemented in the United Kingdom in 1994.
Whilst many of the examples used here might allude to the more generalised use of CCTV systems, there are many online retailers who specialise in smaller, less complicated and more self-contained CCTV systems that would suit a small office or shop. The idea of constant observation might seem a little daunting, but the real question is not can you afford to install a CCTV system in your home or workplace, but can you afford not to?
Ian Appleton is a writer who understands why people might ask the question: why install Bosch CCTV? The answer is simple though as theses systems offer you security, safety and above all else peace of mind that your business or property is protected.