Why Are Surveillance Cameras Important?

Today’s high-tech, artificially intelligent surveillance cameras do more than capture footage of crime as it happens.
Security Cameras for Business

Are security cameras important? Since crime is all around us, any amount of deterrence will ultimately lessen the risk to your business.  

The Risk of Going Without Remote Video Monitoring

Surveillance cameras can help solve crime, deter criminals, reduce legal liability, and more. But is it just enough to have “set and forget” security cameras that you don’t check until there’s been a break-in? What happens if you don’t have cameras at all?

The unfortunate truth is that these days, property crime is on the rise, especially for businesses that aren’t protected. Construction sites are at particularly high risk in late 2021 with the supply chain crunch increasing the price of materials.

Construction Security Checklist

Here are just a few recent examples from prior weeks:

  • In Fort Myers, Florida, two men were charged with theft after having been caught driving away from a construction site with a truck full of stolen plywood.
  • In Minoa, New York, “thousands of dollars worth of construction equipment” was stolen from a locked trailer at a remote job site, with police still investigating surveillance footage—not from the work site, but from surrounding homes.
  • Just the other day, two trespassers were charged with over $5,000 (CAD) damage while breaking into a construction site in London, Ontario. 
  • In perhaps one of the most brazen examples we’ve seen yet, thieves stole an entire $14,000 (AUD) fiberglass swimming pool from a construction site in Australia!

What do these examples have in common? Well, the two criminals that got busted were actually caught on camera first, giving the victims concrete proof of who was responsible. But some plywood might have already been sold, to never be recovered again, and the $5,000 CAD in damage still must be repaired. The equipment might have been pawned, and who knows where the fiberglass pool is off to. 

In all of these cases, it would have been much better if the crimes were stopped in their tracks before they could steal or damage much of anything. That’s where remote video monitoring (RVM) comes into play. With RVM, surveillance cameras are regularly watched by offsite virtual guards who can dispatch police or sound on-site alarms. Services like Pro-Vigil can respond within seconds of an intrusion being detected.

Imagine if the thieves in Australia had been just starting to pilfer the pool when alarms went off and told them they were being recorded. Do you think they’d have gone through with it? Probably not!

Now you’re probably thinking, “security cameras just record crime, they don’t stop it from happening.” And you would be right if we were talking about outdated CCTV cameras. But today’s high-tech, artificially intelligent surveillance cameras do more than capture footage of crime as it happens. 

Modern surveillance tools use audio and visual deterrents when a threat is detected, causing criminals to run away before they steal or damage  anything on the property. So, what makes security cameras so vital? Deterrence is one reason, but it doesn’t stop there. 

The Importance of Surveillance Cameras

We take issue with the term “surveillance camera,” because it implies that these tools are just there to watch. Today’s systems play a more active role in stopping crime from happening. 

A University of North Carolina study sought to prove the connection between surveillance cameras and crime deterrence. Researchers interviewed more than 400 incarcerated burglars and found:

  • If an alarm sounded during an attempted burglary, one-half would give up and run away.
  • The most effective crime deterrents, according to the criminals, were surveillance cameras, followed by alarms.

Another study showed crime was reduced by more than 50% in parking lots simply by adding video surveillance. 

These are just two studies that illustrate the importance of security cameras for your business. Deterring crime is certainly more cost-effective than picking up the pieces after it has occurred. 

Benefits Beyond Crime Deterrence

Technology advancements made security cameras even more effective at protecting assets. But the benefits don’t end there: 

  • Wi-Fi

    Wi-Fi allows you to connect your cameras wirelessly through the internet. The practical application, from a security perspective, is that you or your security team can view what’s happening in front of the camera in real-time. Imagine you’re at dinner and a security alert pops up on your phone. You can access the cameras in your business—but that’s not all.

  • Mobile apps

    Mobile apps let you interact with on-site video surveillance from your cell phone or another digital device. Some security companies (like Pro-Vigil) have an easy-to-use app. These tools let you check the HD footage on your cameras, and you can even tilt or pan individual cameras to better see what’s happening. You can also check on camera status, or even disarm or activate the security features at your business, all from a sunny beach half the world away.

  • Microphones and speakers

    Microphones and speakers are your remote eyes and ears. Adding two-way communication features to your video surveillance only increases their effectiveness. Imagine you’re a criminal attempting a break-in and a voice comes booming out of the video camera. Wouldn’t you want to run? Surveillance cameras equipped with audio deterrents allow you to ask questions or inform miscreants you’re calling the police. They can be wired to trigger an alarm, too. But these video surveillance tools become even more important when you add visual features, such as bright flashing lights to startle intruders.

  • Night vision

    Night vision is a must-have feature if you’re seeking to elevate the importance of video surveillance after hours. After all, darkness is a friend to the criminal element. Most businesses use lighting to illuminate hidden corners of parking lots and garages. But you almost always need clear HD footage under dim lighting or adverse weather conditions, too.

All of these features illustrate the effectiveness and overall importance of security cameras to your business. Now let’s look more closely at four important ways that video surveillance can help your business elevate its security footprint.

Four Ways Video Surveillance Helps Your Business

We know deterrence of crime is one of the most important benefits that surveillance systems offer, but what does that mean exactly? 

1. Cameras can capture physical details of the criminal.

Video Surveillance HD footage

How can a jury or judge argue with a picture of the person’s face, how they move, or even their license plate number? If a criminal isn’t deterred by flashing lights, alarms, or your voice telling them their illegal activity is being recorded, you’ve got plenty of video evidence for the police to use when locking them up.

2. Your insurance carrier will likely be pleased to know you’ve installed video surveillance.

install video surveillance

You MIGHT qualify for a premium discount as a result. The importance of surveillance systems to insurers can’t be discounted; these tools deter crime, but that’s not all. Video surveillance can also do things like lessen the risk of a false liability claim by a customer. That makes video surveillance not only good for you, but good for your insurance carrier. (Every situation is different, so please check with your insurance provider to see if they reduce rates when a security system is installed.)

3. Modern surveillance systems can eliminate the expense of a traditional alarm system.

motion detection video surveillance

Many of today’s wi-fi-enabled cameras come equipped with artificial intelligence, motion sensors, alerts that go to your phone, analytics, and audiovisual deterrents. All of these features are fully integrated into the cameras, making the entire system more affordable compared to an outdated alarm company.

4. You can check up on multiple properties at once.

What is Remote Video Surveillance?

It’s instant peace of mind for a business owner or landlord with multiple properties. You can pull up real-time video footage of what’s happening at your properties. But you really don’t have to since we’ll have eyes on the entire property when it’s needed most. (We offer 24/7/365 monitoring solutions, as well as more flexible monitoring hours so you only pay for what you need.)

So, what is the real importance of video surveillance cameras? We’ve seen these tools up the ante against criminals in ways that more than pay for the cost of the equipment. Pro-Vigil is proud to provide consulting, design, and installation of the world’s most effective crime deterrent—video surveillance. We have packages to fit even the smallest business. When you’re ready to sleep a little more soundly at night, why don’t you start the conversation with our team?

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