Organizations installed closed circuit TV (CCTV) almost exclusively for security monitoring. CCTV, though, has many shortcomings. First of all, it's expensive and disruptive to install. Second, once installed, its capabilities are limited. CCTV records images on videocassettes, so police and other emergency personnel can't view the event live. Therefore, they often don't know an emergency is occurring or how serious it is. If they are informed of an emergency, these first responders can't understand its circumstances or context through CCTV. They see the event only after viewing the video, which is usually long after it's over.
A & T Network Systems – Video Surveillance Service
In some cases, authorities can't ever view the event. Savvy criminals often take the tape with them as they leave the scene. In cases of fire, it's frequently burned. Therefore, a successor system is needed–one that delivers secure, real-time images of an emergency as well as the flexibility to show both full-motion and still images.
More and more, companies are installing Internet-based IP surveillance as a far superior alternative to CCTV. This technology offers real-time delivery of video and still images from a crime or emergency scene via a LAN or the Internet.
In a nutshell, IP surveillance uses a company's existing network and Internet technology to transmit images from analog cameras and/or IP cameras over public networks. These systems allow live streaming video and still image transfer (both one-way and two-way) at an average of 30 frames per second into a standard, easy-to-use Web browser, so video can be viewed in real time from police cars and other emergency vehicles.
A & T Network Systems – Video Surveillance Camera
IP-based systems deliver a great deal of additional functionality. For instance, they provide motion detection, auto time and date stamps, easy transfer of visuals, and pre- and post-alarm messaging. Business owners are notified immediately if an event is occurring; they can then log on to the system remotely to see what's happening in their offices and businesses.
An enormous variety of organizations have already installed IP-based surveillance systems to help secure both the interior and exterior of buildings. A few examples include retail stores, banks, law firms, gas stations, parking garages, schools and government offices; but these systems provide greater security to all organizations and businesses. Users have found that IP surveillance,
- Enhances and expedites law enforcement and emergency services to high-risk calls.
- Contributes to reliable identification of criminals and reduces the need for eyewitnesses.
- Can be used locally and remotely.
- Integrates easily with CCTV cameras, thus preserving existing security investments.
Most users also have discovered that IP surveillance is very affordable, since companies already have many components of the system in place (such as an IP network and broadband connectivity). Other system components include an 802.11 wireless LAN, an access router, a video server, an IP camera (existing analog cameras can also be used) and host PC surveillance software.
IP technology is the next step forward for surveillance systems. IP-based streaming video surveillance lets organizations monitor, prevent and/or respond to emergency situations more effectively and affordably, via the Internet. At the same time, the technology allows law enforcement, security companies and other emergency personnel to prepare better and respond more fully to emergencies. Thus, the physical safety of a company's vital human and business assets is far more secure and protected.