How to Watch a CCTV Camera from Anywhere Using the Internet

Instead of wondering what video images await you when you make it into the office, you can watch your CCTV camera online from your cell phone. Here’s how to monitor your business CCTV cameras from anywhere using the internet, an app, and your cell phone.
How Can I Watch My CCTV Feed Using the Internet

Why a Security Camera Live Feed is the Hot App for 2024

Cell phones are the new security tool of choice for many small to mid-size business owners. It makes sense; cell phones are prolific tools and everyone seems to have one. If you have a business and you don’t know how to watch your online CCTV camera, you’re missing out.

Today, you can keep an eye on your business from any digital device connected to the internet if you want. But what if you’re stuck with older CCTV cameras? How can you watch a CCTV camera from anywhere using the internet?

Traditional CCTV cameras can now function like modern, high-tech cameras. Using a smartphone app, you can view your cameras over the internet. A remote view of a camera on your phone can help increase your company’s security. A security camera live feed enables your real-time response to a problem as it’s happening.

In the past, CCTV cameras were strictly reactive. You’d watch the camera footage of a security incident after it happened. Not anymore. Security becomes proactive once you learn how to watch an online CCTV camera. The risk of a thief or vandal getting away lessens. You regain some control, even if you aren’t at your business.

A security camera live feed smartphone app can be a valuable tool for business owners. There are at least a dozen reasons why it makes sense to remote view business cameras from a smartphone:

  • Enhanced Security: Business owners are always concerned about the security of their premises, assets, and employees. A live feed from security cameras allows them to monitor their business 24/7/365 from their cellphone. That way, business owners can have an active hand in deterring theft, vandalism, and other security threats.

  • Loss Prevention: For retail businesses, monitoring live camera feeds can help prevent theft, from customers and employees. The presence of visible cameras and the knowledge you’re watching is a deterrent.

  • Employee Accountability: Business owners can use security camera remote viewing to ensure that employees follow company policies and procedures.

  • Remote Management: Business owners may have multiple locations or need to travel frequently. A security camera live feed app enables them to monitor remotely from a single platform or online security hub.

  • Incident Investigation: The live feed can provide crucial evidence for investigations, insurance claims, or legal proceedings.

  • Cost-Effective Security: Compared to hiring on-site security personnel, security camera systems and live feed apps offer cost-effective solutions for businesses of all sizes.

  • Operational Insights: Remote view cameras provide insights into business operations. For example, in a restaurant, they can help managers monitor customer traffic, kitchen operations, and customer service quality.

  • Guest and Customer Experience: Businesses can use live camera feeds and cell phone monitoring to ensure a positive guest experience.

  • Compliance and Safety: Businesse owners in regulated industries can use security camera remote viewing to ensure compliance with safety and security regulations.

  • Integration with Other Systems: Modern security camera systems can integrate with other business software. This seamless integration can provide a comprehensive security solution for business owners.

  • Customizable Alerts: Live feed apps often have customizable alert features. Notifications for specific events or triggers, such as motion detection after hours, can go straight to a text.

  • Peace of Mind: A security camera live feed app provides business owners peace of mind. They always have eyes on their business, even when they not physically present.

If you’ve ever wanted to enable security camera remote viewing, here’s how to make it happen.

How Can I View My Security Cameras Online?

Modern surveillance systems give you the ability to watch security cameras from anywhere. However, you don’t have to! If you’d rather not feel pressured to check your cameras all night, turn to the pros and let professional virtual security guards monitor your feeds. However, if you want to check your cameras yourself, you certainly can.

You can watch your CCTV cameras over the internet by downloading a phone app or installing viewing software on your desktop. The first step is choosing suitable security cameras for remote viewing. Most modern Internet Protocol (IP) cameras support online viewing. Most modern Internet Protocol (IP) cameras support online viewing.

The second step is to set up your security cameras according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If your business is larger, this set up is best handled by a professional video surveillance company. Whether DIY or through a third-party expert, this step involves connecting the cameras to your local network and configuring their settings.

The next step in how to watch online CCTV cameras is to select a viewing method:

What is Remote Video Surveillance?

  • Mobile Apps: Many security camera manufacturers offer mobile apps for iOS and Android devices. Download the app for your camera brand from the respective app store. If you have a video surveillance company, they can set this up for you.
    The viewing software may be proprietary to your CCTV provider. The best CCTV providers have a smart app you can install on any mobile device and then track it yourself. Companies like Pro-Vigil offer viewing software for free that you can download to your mobile devices.
    There are also third-party viewing vendors that can help you watch your CCTV camera from anywhere using the internet. You typically need to match the model of your security cameras to the software that supports the system. Alternatively, just call your CCTV provider and ask them how you can get this important upgrade.

  • Web Browser: You can also view your cameras through a web browser on a computer or mobile device. Most cameras have a web-based interface that allows you to access the feed.

  • Port Forwarding or VP: If you want to access your cameras directly over the internet, you may need to set up port forwarding on your router. This step involves configuring your router to forward incoming requests for the camera's port to the camera's local IP address. Be cautious with port forwarding, as it can pose security risks if not properly configured. A more secure method is to set up a VPN on your home network and connect to it from your remote device. This way, you can access your cameras as if you were on your local network.

Depending upon the capabilities of your system, you should also be able to:

DVR recording

  • Connect your DVR recording device to the internet: This step depends on your DVR. An older security system may not be able to perform this function. The process is simple; just connect your recording device to your router by plugging it into the LAN port with an ethernet cable. However, you’ll also need to log in to your DVR. Your CCTV provider should be able to provide you with step-by-step instructions. Alternatively, your video surveillance provider can set this up for you. (Note if you’re storing video footage in the cloud, skip this step.)

Please note that the exact steps can vary depending on the brand and model of your security cameras and router. Always prioritize security when setting up remote access to your cameras to prevent unauthorized access or breaches. If you’re unsure about any step, consider seeking assistance from a professional IT or security technician.

Some general steps to secure your system include:

  • Setting strong, unique passwords for your cameras and any remote access methods. Avoid using default passwords.

  • Keep your cameras and router firmware up-to-date to patch security vulnerabilities.

  • Enable encryption for remote access, such as HTTPS for web access or secure VPN protocols. (Note most cloud based apps offer this.)

  • After setting up the necessary configurations, test remote access from a different network to ensure it's working as expected. Use the mobile app or web browser, depending on your chosen method.

  • Be mindful of privacy and security concerns. Avoid sharing login credentials with unauthorized individuals and regularly review access logs for unusual activity.

If you encounter any issues or need help with specific settings, consult the manufacturer’s documentation or customer support for guidance—or just call your video surveillance provider.

Best Features for Your Remote View Camera

What is Remote Video Surveillance?

The best security camera remote viewing doesn’t just help you watch online CCTV camera footage but also helps extend the camera’s reach by adding new features.

The same technology that lets you watch your CCTV footage online usually comes with a host of modern features:

  • Security camera live feed of your property or business from any digital device connected to the internet.

  • Watching what’s happening at your business in real-time.

  • Enable encryption for remote access, such as HTTPS for web access or secure VPN protocols. (Note most cloud based apps offer this.)

  • Automated motion alerts and notifications to let you know when there is a potential problem.

  • Some software even enables pan/tilt/zoom features to help control the camera’s movement.

  • Video recording and online data storage for easier retrieval.

  • Customizable security camera features to improve your surveillance footprint.

Remote monitoring offers several features for better business security. Here are the benefits of adding internet software to your cameras.

Benefits of Watching a Security Camera Live Feed

Remote online monitoring is a huge advantage over standard CCTV platforms. By capturing video data and sending it in real-time to your internet-connected smartphone, you become the 24/7 eyes and ears of the business.

Remote online CCTV viewing software is:

  • Reassuring: You can dial up your business at any time 24/7 from any location with internet connectivity if you want to check on it for your peace of mind.

  • A deterrent for criminals: Sometimes, even the presence of a security camera is all you need. But if a team member or virtual security guard can watch the cameras at all times, you can stop crime before it happens and call the police.

  • Reliable: Presuming your on-site connectivity doesn’t drop, watching your CCTV camera online offers the immediacy of the digital era.

Now let’s look at one specific type of software to watch online CCTV footage. Here’s how to watch a CCTV camera from anywhere using the internet—and Pro-Vigil’s software.

What Does Pro-Vigil’s Security Camera Remote Viewing Software Offer?

Pro-Vigil offers our customers proprietary online CCTV viewing software. You can log in and check your HD cameras, arm your location-specific security, and even check on the health of your IP-enabled cameras. Our free downloadable software is the perfect way to watch your CCTV cameras from anywhere by using the internet.

  • Compatibility to most HD cameras.

  • Live viewing of any property in real-time online.

  • Camera health checks to ensure your surveillance system is working properly.

  • The ability to arm or disarm your security systems remotely.

  • Remote control of pan-tilt-zoom camera features from afar.

  • Analytics and a statistics dashboard to track video clips, historical data, and more.

The Pro-Vigil viewing software allows you to gain control over your video surveillance system by using the powerful convenience of the internet. You can even create a trouble ticket for Pro-Vigil service teams to repair, add, or reconfigure your existing security network. The app allows you to leverage a smart online portal to:

  • Track trouble tickets.

  • View and create data analytics about any on-site activity.

  • Check the status and health of your system.

  • Or simply watch your CCTV cameras from anywhere using the internet.

Viewing CCTV camera feeds on smartphones offers business owners enhanced security, improved operational efficiency, and the flexibility to manage their business remotely. It’s a valuable tool for maintaining the safety and integrity of the business and its assets.

If you’re wondering how to watch your CCTV cameras from anywhere by using the internet, call Pro-Vigil. We’d be happy to provide you with a consultation of your existing system and how to upgrade it to provide this important security feature. Call on us to find out more.

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