Business owners are increasingly using mobile devices, such as smartphones or tablets, to monitor commercial premises remotely and keep them safe from intruders.
This is possible thanks to internet protocol (IP) closed circuit television (CCTV) systems. These create high quality digitised video data streams and transmit these directly to your organisation’s computer network or the cloud via network cabling or WI-FI.
You, or someone you designate, connect mobile device(s) to IP systems via the Internet using an app. This allows you to view live CCTV footage directly from site, monitor company premises at any time and from any location, and spot disturbances quickly and easily (as long as you can connect to a WIFI network or have a decent mobile data signal).
What’s more, when configured with intelligent software IP CCTV systems can track and analyse live footage at high speed, automatically activating an alarm or notification when they detect something amiss (e.g. an intruder entering the building).
You can receive these alarms and notifications on mobile devices via email alerts and messages. Then immediately log into the IP CCTV system using the app, check the live footage and even remotely control cameras using pan and zoom functions to clarify a situation before taking the appropriate course of action
You can set your own alarm and notification triggers to suit your business, e.g. if a premises’ back door is opened between the hours of 6pm and 6am. IP systems are fully customisable.
It is possible to route IP CCTV footage through a remote monitoring provider. These usually operate 24-7, employ a team of security professionals based in an observatory and react immediately when an alarm is activated from your company site e.g.:
- Call the emergency services
- Call you at the time of a break-in to discuss intruders and decide on a course of action
- Communicate with intruders using a loudspeaker (which is usually enough to scare them away)
This can be advantageous if you wish to bolster security at your company premises.
Top three benefits of smartphone surveillance
Below we list the top three benefits of using IP CCTV systems connected to mobile devices to monitor commercial premises:
- Cost efficiency
Before IP technology came of age, to achieve 24-hour surveillance you had to install your own traditional analogue CCTV system and employ people to monitor the video in shifts. Using an automatic CCTV system linked to mobile devices is far more cost effective in the long term.
Although the initial cost of an IP CCTV system is more than a traditional analogue set up, it is decreasing rapidly. This will reduce IP’s payback period and the amount of initial investment required, delivering future savings.
It goes without saying that being able to monitor your business premises remotely using mobile devices at any time and from any location, with automatic alarms and notifications if the system detects a security breach, is the ultimate in convenience and flexibility.
Also, if something triggers an alarm at three in the morning you can immediately check your smartphone or tablet to see what is actually happening.
If it is a false alarm, this saves you unnecessarily leaping out of bed and rushing to your company premises in a dressing gown. If you are less inclined to such bravado, it saves wasting police time.
- Personal safety
From a personal safety standpoint being able to glance at a smartphone or tablet and establish how many intruders there are is highly advantageous. It means you can assess the situation remotely and call for police assistance if required.
This is much safer than getting into the car, driving to the office in the middle of the night and tentatively walking around trying to find the cause of a tripped alarm.
Although there are still a lot of traditional analogue CCTV systems in businesses all over the country, IP technology is rapidly gaining market share as it becomes cost effective, ever more capable and ingrained in today’s smartphone culture.
The ability to remotely monitor and control IP-based security camera systems directly from mobile devices is an enormous benefit. Indeed, this is weighing heavily in business owners’ decisions to upgrade to a connected digital surveillance system.