Security cameras are used for two main purposes: prevention and investigation. The footages that you collect with your CCTV will most often be used to review a crime or accident so that you can understand what really happened. But it also have deterrent values because people who know that they are being watched usually show their best behaviors.
To maximize the use of CCTV cameras, one must consider the best place to have it installed. Here are the four recommended areas to put your security cameras.
- Exits and Entrance
This is your best chance to capture facial images that can be used for identification purposes. Your camera should be set to view a width of the average door which is three feet wide to make sure you get a clear and decent identification image. Just be careful with pointing a camera towards exterior doors as once it opens, subject usually go black with a sudden change of light. Exits are easier in most cases since the camera is facing away from the light outside the premise.
- Customer Transaction Area
It is important to have a camera pointing to the teller station, cash registers, kiosks and other areas where customer transaction occur. Of course, this is where burglars main target if they want rob your place so this is your next best chance to capture footages you can use for investigations. Just make sure not to put the camera too high and make sure to have the installer to have the proper angle so can properly see the images. About 7 feet high and looking directly into the area should be good enough.
- Important Targets
By targets means jewelry cabinets, cash drawers, vault, safes, filing cabinets or any area that a thieves will target. The focus in this area is not much on the identification of the intruders but more on the ability to review or respond to potential crimes. You would want to have your camera to be a little high on this place to make sure you also capture the actual item or equipment you are protecting such as the vault or cabinets.
- Secluded Areas
Most of the footages you will capture in the back alleys and parking lots are investigation regarding vandalism and violence. This is where the prevention part of having a security camera comes into play. Potential perpetrators may think twice committing a crime once they see a camera staring at them.
The Philippine CCTV Cameras for Security Act of 2012
It is no secret that CCTV actually solve crimes. We have seen them in movies, TV series like CSI and of course, in real news. There’s no reason why businesses would not install one on their premises considering the number benefits it would give them, unless of course they have this syndrome called technology mistrust.
But security is not the only definitive reason why an acquisition of CCTV is a must. Just in case you are living in a cave the last two years, you would know that it is now mandatory for businesses to have a CCTV system to acquire a business permit in the Philippines. The problem is entrepreneurs don’t have the time or too lazy to understand the scope of this law.
That is why we will break it down for you here:
Who are required to install CCTV?
All business establishments who have more than twenty (20) employees, have work premises of fifty (50) meters or more and have a daily transactions amount to no less than fifty thousand (50,000) pesos per day. In short, big businesses.
What are the requirements?
- The CCTV system must be working 24/7.
- All footages should not be deleted within 60 days.
- All entry points, work area and its perimeter should have a camera to watch over it.
Important things to know
- There should be a sign telling everyone that your establishment has CCTV installed.
- You can’t put CCTV in changing rooms, bathrooms, toilet, rest rooms, shower and similar areas
- Business owners/managers are required to disclose their CCTV recordings only to law officers if its:
- In connection with an investigation of an offense punishable by law
- In connection with any criminal or civil proceedings
- In connection to helping identify criminal perpetrator and the manner by which the offense was committed
- The extent of the recordings handed to the law officers are only of those pertaining to the instances mentioned above.
- Penalties implemented for Non-compliance
- Imprisonment of no more than six months
- Fine of one thousand (Php 1,000) pesos per day
- None issuance of business permits
This law is now in effect in all cities and metropolitan areas in the Philippines including but not limited to Metro Manila, Cebu and Davao. Some cities even have additional requirements on top of the existing ones making it a more comprehensive local law. If you don’t want the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the local government units to go after you, then might as well comply with these requirements. Anyway, just like what they say, it is for your own safety.
CCTV which stands for Closed Circuit Television is a system of security cameras all linked to one monitoring system. Since CCTV systems are now gaining popularity in the country and becoming more affordable, businesses can feel more comfortable knowing they can secure their businesses, homes and other properties. These days, businesses are using CCTV to do more than just catching thieves and monitoring employee activities. Through the continuous advancement in technology, the visual information extracted from CCTV has proved to be valuable to sales and operations through the use of business intelligence.
So what is business intelligence then?
By definition, it is a data analysis process aimed at boosting business performance by helping managers and other end users make more informed decisions. Potential benefits include accelerating and improving decision making; optimizing internal business processes; increasing operational efficiency; driving new revenues; and gaining competitive advantages over business rivals.
Let’s have a look at some business intelligence features one can look for to take your CCTV system to the next level.
DVR – POS integration. This is an ideal loss prevention system for retailers to improve profit margins through better detection of fraud, theft, and errors in transactions. What it does is it allows the CCTV system to communicate with Point-of-Sale (POS) system allowing you to monitor inventory shrinkage and the shortage of currency.
Queue length monitoring. This determines the number of people in a scene. You can set it like once exceeds a set figure, it can generates an alert. One good application of this feature is managing queues in brick-and-mortar businesses, especially retailers to minimize wait times and lessen customer frustrations.
Loitering detection. This is basically the classic security guard that alert you whenever someone is staying in your premise for an unusual amount of time – except this one is digital. The CCTV system can trigger an alarm when a person remains in a camera scene longer than a set time.
People counting. This detects and analyzes real-time images to count foot traffic going in and out of a CCTV scene. This is ideal for department stores, event areas, airports and more. This can help get a more accurate data correlating the sales and visitor aspects of the business.
Missing and left object detection. If you are worried about unidentified object lying around your business premises then this feature is what you need. The system can trigger a notification, usually an alarm whenever an object of defined size remains in a camera scene or an object has been removed from a defined area longer than a set time.
Access counter. This feature determines how many times a specific area or object has been accessed by people. This is a great way to analyze which display section & item is the most popular & visited in the store.
Secure zone. This is the feature that will set an alarm when intrusions occur in one or more predefined restricted zones. Since businesses are the usual target most by burglars and thieves, these are the perfect way to drive all these trouble makers away.
Today’s businesses operate in economy that affords little room for error. They must combat the harsh challenges that include consolidation within the industry, tight competition, and increasingly low profit margins. It is critical for forward-thinking organizations to adopt technologies that can help capture and analyze activity patterns to increase conversion rates, improve efficiency and maximize customer satisfaction. This is where a reliable CCTV business intelligence comes into play