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Published by Marie on July 31, 2015 11:45 AM

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Because a surveillance system runs intensive management software, and has to store large amounts of data, the hard drives you choose for your surveillance system are very important. While you cannot eliminate the chances of a hardware malfunction or failure, selecting hardware designed for professional video surveillance applications is your best option for the best system performance.

Traditional hard drives have spinning discs, while a solid state drive (SSD) uses different technology to remove the spinning parts. Because it has no moving parts, a SSD is believed to last longer; this is still relatively new technology, however, and has not been extensively tested in video surveillance systems.

Whichever style you choose, always look for professional-level hard drives. Some manufacturers will also have "surveillance-grade" or "server-rated" hard drives.

How much HHD space do you need? That depends on your system and how long you want to store data. It is always best to have too much space versus too little, so you won't lose important video files due to a lack of space. Speak with surveillance specialists with experience designing systems and can walk you through the decision process.

One thing we highly recommend for professional surveillance systems is a RAID (redundant array of independent disks) setup. This will help prevent the loss of important data if part of your system fails.

Want to learn more about designing your surveillance system? Contact us today!

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Published by Ellen on July 28, 2015 9:59 AM

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VideoSurveillance.com has a lonstanding history helping facilities within the critical infrastructure market deploy high-resolution IP camera systems along their perimeters. Examples of ritical infrastructure projects that VideoSurveillance.com have worked with include electrical utilities and electrical substations.

Heightened security efforts are key to keeping critical infrastructure businesses protected against trespassers, theft, and vandalism. In addition, security cameras help ensure safety protocols are followed and that a live and recorded view of the facility is accessible 24-7 on a remote or mobile device. By monitoring the facility on a smartphone or tablet, manager(s) can catch incidents which might hinder operations. Most importantly, an IP video surveillance system will help reduce the threat of safety breaches.

Whether you represent a electrical power company or an electric substation, you can count on the critical infrastructure specialists at VideoSurveillance.com to design a professional security camera system customized to your facility's unique needs. Easily minimize threats and maximize building safety with strategically placed video surveillance cameras.

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Published by Marie on July 23, 2015 11:56 AM

Equipment-Rental-Blog-Image-7-23-15.jpgConstruction and agriculture machinery is large and expensive, and not everyone who needs the equipment occasionally can afford to purchase and store it. Equipment rental businesses make it easy to access this equipment as needed, but how can you secure your business and products?

Video surveillance systems are extremely common and popular in retail businesses. Although it may be more difficult for a thief to steal a tractor versus a sweater, all retail businesses need to be aware of the damages from thieves. A surveillance camera can monitor your business around the clock, even when you are out of the office.

Additionally, a surveillance system can be used to monitor customer interactions, track money handling at the cash register, and ensure all your staff and customers are following safety standards around the equipment.

Learn more about video surveillance for equipment rental security.

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Published by Ellen on July 17, 2015 12:02 PM

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If you own an RV or boat dealership, then you know how critical it is to protect your lot against theft, vandalism, and trespassers. VideoSurveillance.com specailizes in helping boat dealers and RV dealerships heighten their security efforts with custom-designed security camera solutions. Designed with precision, our custom video surveillance systems provide a wealth of benefits to ensure your lot is well guarded and monitored around the clock, 24-7.

Pioneering advances in security camera technology have made it possible to capture video in full HD resolution, which gives business owners the ability to record exceptionally clean and detailed images of their property. VideoSurveillance.com highly recommends HD security camera systems for boat dealers and RV lots, since these types of businesses usually take up a vast area and require high-quality recorded images. Full HD video resolution is a sure-fire way to ensure that suspcious characters are recognizeable in images; the sterling quality of 1080p resolution certainly trumps analog video in terms of noise, detail and clarity.

Ready to learn more about how a custom video surveillance system can improve security for your RV or boat business? Take a look at our RV & boat dealership industry page!

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Published by Ellen on July 8, 2015 9:24 AM

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VideoSurveillance.com has helped marijuana dispensaries, producers, retailers, wholesalers, and processors protect their facilities with customized HD video surveillance systems. These facilities are required to meet stringent state regulations in order to obtain and keep their license to sell their product. Among these regulations include installing and maintaining a video surveillance system to monitor operations 24-7. VideoSurveillance.com is extremely knowledgeable in marijuana compliance laws, and will design a security camera system that not only meets compliance but provides a host of other benefits to ensure you, as the owner, are well protected against internal and external theft.

With a security camera system you will:

- Save time: With a security system, you can tap into your cameras from your smartphone device anytime and anywhere. This allows you to monitor live and recorded video and react faster to any potential problems.

- Better manage your marijuana business: You'll be able to identify places for improvement and institute changes by evaluating grow, production, or retail practices that slow business down. You can monitor crops to ensure they meet the highest standards in security, pinpoint unnecessary or poor growing practices, and even keep track of customer traffic.

- Improve loss prevention efforts: Deter would-be criminals from breaking into your facility & prevent employee theft by spotting dishonest employees. You'll obtain evidentiary video for any instances of theft, and decrease yearly losses by recovering stolen assets. An HD video surveillance system is capable of capturing identifying details of suspicious characters so you can make a positive identification.

Ready to learn more? VideoSurveillance.com has devoted an entire page to the medical marijuana industry, where you'll learn more about the day-to-day threats that cannabis facilities face.

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Published by Marie on June 30, 2015 10:47 AM

This blog post will walk you through installing and configuring your Ubiquiti antennas to establish a wireless link. Wireless surveillance systems are key to extending your security into areas a traditionally wired system can't go, including large campuses and remote buildings.

Before you install any wireless equipment, we recommend bench testing the connection between the Ubiquiti antennas - a mistake will result in having to un-mount the remote antenna to reconnect it locally.

Step One: Wiring the Components

The first step to setting up your wireless system is to wire the components so that all parts of the system receive power and network connectivity.

All Ubiquiti antennas require a separate power supply, and cannot work off of standard PoE devices. The power supply needs to be connected to a standard power socket, and have two ports for Ethernet cables. The ports are labeled PoE and LAN.

The PoE port will always be wired directly to the Main port on the Ubiquiti device. If the Ubiquiti device has a secondary port, do not wire the PoE to that port because it will not correctly power the device.

The LAN port on the power supply needs to be wired into your network, or to a switch powering the camera. The LAN port cannot be wired directly to a PoE camera, as it will not provide enough power for the camera to function.

Step Two: Setup Units as Broadcaster & Receiver

Once you have wired the units you need to setup one unit as a broadcaster and one unite as a receiver.

To begin, log into the Ubiquiti unit. The default IP address is 192.168.1.20. The default username is ubnt, and password is ubnt.

Once you have logged into the unit, click on the wireless tab.

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In the wireless tab, you will need to change a few settings.

First, you need to select the wireless mode. Select Access Point for the unit that will act as the broadcasted, and Station for the unit that will act as the receiver.

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Always check the WDS (Transparent Bridge Mode) box.

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You will always need to set a SSID that will be used by both antennas to communication. The SSID has to be identical on both antennas. We recommend hiding the SSID so no other devices can see the network connection.

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The last setting you'll need to change is to make the link secure, an important set to creating the link between units.

We recommend WPA2 for the security setting. Use a long, hard to guess WPA Preshared Key. If you do not secure your wireless link, anyone with a wireless device will be able to connect to your network.

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Once all of these setting changes have been made, click Change at the bottom of the screen. A message will pop up saying that the configuration contains changes and asking if you want to apply these changes. Click Apply.

Step Three: Secure Your Network

Select the Network tab at the top of the screen.

On this screen, set the antennas to a static IP address that will be reachable by your network. We do not recommend setting the antennas to DHCP, as communication between the antennas can be interrupted.

Next, select the System tab. Here, you will want to change the username and password of the devices to make your wireless connection secure.

To change the password, click on the key icon next to Administrator Username. Enter in the current password, and then enter in your new password.

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Once you have changed username and password, click Change at the bottom of the screen, and select Apply when prompted. Repeat steps two and three as needed for every Ubiquiti device on your network.

The devices will reset to accommodate all of the setting changes you made. Once they are back online, and both antennas have been setup, check the connection between devices. First connect the Access Point to your network, and then connect the station to the PoE side (leave the LAN side blank).

The back of the units will light up with red, yellow, and green bars if the connection is good. Once these light up, the connection is good and you can mount the Ubiquiti antennas to access your remote cameras.

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Published by Marie on June 25, 2015 10:43 AM

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Self storage businesses are spread all over the country, serving a wide range of customers from college students storing items during the summer break to homeowners who need to downsize. With customers coming and going from their unit, a huge array of items under your protection, and business layouts that resemble a maze, how can you secure your grounds?

Try installing a video surveillance system! A flexible system can include as many cameras as you need, allowing you to secure every corridor and parking lot. And with remote and mobile viewing, you can manage your system and monitor the business from any location - even when you're off-site at home or on vacation.

A surveillance system can also help you deal with claims of theft or damage to property. This will help your customers feel more secure, and allow you to share evidentiary video of the crime for police investigations. Your customers are often leaving prized possessions with you, so this peace of mind is invaluable in retaining and gaining business.

You can learn more in our Self Storage Industry Solutions page.

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Published by Ellen on June 23, 2015 9:27 AM

Parking lots are a key area to monitor, and shouldn't be overlooked. If you run a business or oversee a facility where there's a parking lot, then it's important to keep tabs on what vehicles enter and exit the parking lot in case there's an accident, vandalism, or even car theft.

Another benefit of parking lot video surveillance is that it can help identify vehicles that do not pay their parking fees if there's a charge to utilize the parking lot. High-definition video surveillance systems are especially recommended because of their ability to see clear detail that makes license recognition possible.

Parking lot monitoring is also critical to ensuring the safety of your patrons or employees, who do not have access to their vehicles while they're away. In case a car is broken into or a vehicle hits another without stopping, you'll have the tools to review footage and see which car was responsible for the crime or issue.

Also, employees and/or patrons will put more trust into your business for employing parking lot surveillance, as it will make them feel more at ease when they leave their vehicles in your lot. So, increase safety, identify suspicious vehicles, and capture evidence by investing in a parking lot video surveillance system.

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Published by Marie on June 11, 2015 2:28 PM

Motion detection is an important tool for securing your business or building. It alerts you when someone is on your property that isn't authorized. Understanding how this technology helps you set up better motion detection regions and alerts, but do you actually know how motion detection works?

To understand motion detection, you first need to understand how a camera works. Inside the camera is an image sensor, which the camera lens directs light to - when light hits the image sensor each individual pixel records how much light it's getting. That pattern of light and dark areas on the pixels becomes the complete video image you see. You can read a more in-depth explanation of image sensors here.

When you set up motion detection, you select a region or area to monitor, say a doorway. The way it works is to compare sequential images from your video and if enough of the pixels have changed between those frames, the camera software determines something moved and sends you an alert.

How "enough" change is determined depends on the sensitivity level or percentage level settings you put on your motion detection.

The sensitivity level looks at the changing light/dark levels in the pixels. Higher sensitivity will pick up on more changes while lower sensitivity will require a large level of change, such as the lights going on in a dark room, to set off the alerts. Percentage, on the other hand, looks to the percentage of pixels that have registered a change. If you are monitoring a door, setting the percentage at 50% will alert you when something large walks into the room, such as a person, but ignore something smaller.

Getting the best balance in your motion detection settings to prevent too many false alerts may take some time. While setting up your camera you can test the motion detection by having someone walk in the motion detection region and adjust the settings as needed. It may take some time, but the effort is well worth it when you're notified of a break-in at your store or vandals prowling the parking lot.

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Published by Marie on June 11, 2015 10:18 AM

Here at VideoSurveillance.com we often stress the importance of video surveillance systems in helping stores capture shoplifters and other criminals. Last week a Portland, Oregon store owner was able to do just that, capturing a shoplifter on camera.

Sarah Bibb owns Folly, a clothing boutique in Portland. After noticing an empty hanger, Bibb reviewed her store's surveillance video and found clear video of the theft happening. Bibb contacted police and then, hoping that someone would recognize the woman, shared the video on Facebook. You can see the original post on Bibb's Facebook page.

Friends of the woman recognized her in the video and brought her back to the store to return the clothing, where she was arrested. Read more on KOIN 6 News, who were on the scene when the arrest happened.

So why did Bibb's surveillance system work so well in this case? While Bibb is not a VideoSurveillance.com customer, here are several things we can tell she did right:

  • There were multiple cameras installed in the store, including one that provided an overview of the entire floor to monitor customers as they move between displays
  • Another camera was installed with a clear view of the door, making it easy to track every customer who entered the store and document those times
  • A camera next to the door was installed facing customers as they exit at a height for facial recognition
  • The camera's resolution provided clear video for police, and Bibb's Facebook followers, to identify the woman
  • Bibb immediately reviewed the surveillance video when she realized a crime had happened, making it easier to sift through the video files to find the relevant clip

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