Video Surveillance for Hardware Stores and Home Improvement Centers
Because of the safety issues inherently involved with their inventory, video surveillance is a great security tool for hardware stores. A system of security cameras can help keep employees and customers of hardware stores safe, while protecting both the physical structure, as well as the inventory, from theft and other dangers.
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Benefits of Home Center Security Cameras
Prevent theft – Thefts of bricks, wire, pipes and other building supplies commonly found at hardware stores has increased in recent years due to a huge boom in worldwide development and increased demand for raw materials. Hardware stores, like construction sites, have suffered from thefts of copper and other building supplies. A security camera system in a hardware store can help prevent theft of these valuable materials and other inventory
Protect customers – Many types of merchandise available at hardware stores (power tools, lumber and can be extremely dangerous if handled incorrectly. The best way to prevent serious accidents from happening is to control access to the tools. However, a video surveillance camera near protected or especially dangerous tools can help investigate accidents and serve as valuable evidence in liability cases.
Remote viewing – A security system with modern IP cameras has the capability of transmitting footage over the internet at any time. Some systems even give you the option of sending alerts when a disturbance is detected. This is a key advantage for hardware stores that have suffered from theft problems in the past. Owners and security managers can receive text messages or e-mails at any time of day or night with a security alert and act on it then, rather than waiting until the morning.
Risks of Video Surveillance at Home Improvement Centers
Privacy – Respect the privacy of your employees and customers by keeping surveillance cameras in public areas and out of restrooms and break rooms.
Damage – Cameras installed on a hardware store sales floor or in a store room can be damaged by shifting merchandise.
Vandalism – Outdoor cameras may be damaged by vandals, thieves trying to cover their tracks, or inclement weather. A damaged camera may interfere or impede overall security
Over-reliance – While security cameras and video surveillance are certainly valuable security technologies, they should not be used as a security "crutch." Security cameras should work in tandem with another type of security like access control, guards, or a security monitoring service in order to provide the maximum amount of building security.
Configuration of Security Cameras at Hardware Stores
A hardware store can be a small independently owned store in a downtown, or a sprawling “mega-mart” type setup, or anything in between. A hardware store's security needs vary widely based on a wide variety of factors, so consider the following when looking into installing video surveillance in a hardware store:
- Do you think that your neighborhood contributes or is detrimental to your overall security?
- What type of security system do you currently have in place?
- What do you consider to be your biggest security problem?
- What types of security problems have you had in the past year?
- How is your store laid out?
Setup Advice for Home Improvement Centers
- Place cameras near all entrances and exits to monitor access, especially in areas where expensive items like copper wire and lumber are kept.
- Take your layout carefully into consideration – high shelves filled with lumber and other back stock, as well as hanging merchandise like fans, can obscure the range of surveillance cameras and prevent a comprehensive recording. A combination of bullet cameras and dome cameras can be useful in these situations
- Cameras placed near valuable inventory like electronics or precious metals can help reduce and discourage shoplifting.