Crime against property is falling across the UK, but the police still recorded over half a million incidents last year. With our houses increasingly filled with high value items including easily stolen digital devices, protecting our homes from attack is a sensible precaution to take. With advanced IP-based systems now available at relatively low cost, anyone can set up their own surveillance system to protect their home or business premises.
Simply attaching a few CCTV cameras to your home that record onto a PVR has up until recently been the only way to create your own surveillance system. Today, however, it is easy to set up a more advanced system that is more versatile and that can enable you to monitor your home from any location. Unshackling CCTV cameras from PVR recording, and moving them to cloud-based storage services frees your system to deliver a number of advantages including:
- Video footage on a PVR can be erased, destroyed or the machine itself stolen. With cloud-based video recording your footage is safe and secure
- IP CCTV cameras come in all shapes, sizes and budgets, so you can create the perfect system for your needs
- As IP CCTV cameras can be wireless, they can be located in even the most awkward locations
- Viewing recorded video footage can be achieved on a desktop PC, but you can also use your smartphone or tablet. And with some systems you can even see live footage streamed directly from your cameras
- Moving to a new IP-based security system is the first step to creating an intelligent and secure home or business
There is little doubt that the smart home is coming with many devices already on the market, and all the major technology developers working to create the much-heralded Internet of Things a reality. Indeed, according to research from Berg Insight, one in eight European households will be 'smart' by 2019.
Security is consistently one of the key reasons given for the adoption of these technologies. In the recent iControl survey, 90% of respondents said personal and family security is one of the most important reasons for using a smart home system – with 67% ranking it as the number one reason overall. In fact, not including at least some type of security capability in a home automation system is considered unacceptable by all.
Jim Johnson, executive vice president of iControl Networks, said in a statement: "The convenience associated with a connected home will likely play a greater role as consumers realise how much easier automation makes their lives."
Developing your own smart home isn't as difficult as it once was. Standards and interoperability are still an issue to a degree, but there are integrated systems that you can buy now. Examples include Oomi, HomeWizard and iSmartAlarm.
However, if taking the plunge with a smart home system is a little too much too soon, focusing on installing an IP CCTV system is an easy first step to take.
Build your system
So you want to set up a security system at home or to protect your business premises based on CCTV. There are a number of options to choose from – the good news is that many of the systems that are on the market are plug-and-play, which means you can have your system up and running in no time.
Turning to monitoring the interior of your home, you could of course simply use any available webcam, but the market has produced a number of products that are purpose-built for ease of use, and to seamlessly integrate into your existing wireless network, or offer convenient Ethernet connections. The leading home security cameras include:
- In.Sight (opens in new tab)
- Y-Cam (opens in new tab)
- Cloud Camera
- NetCam (opens in new tab)
Smart security requires smart devices. Over the last couple of years a number of camera-based security devices have come onto the market. Striking in appearance, they fit perfectly into modern homes that are bristling with technology:
All of these cameras are designed to add CCTV surveillance using your existing Wi-Fi network. With HD cameras now the norm, images are crystal clear. Designed with simple setups, you can have one or all of the rooms in your home or business covered in minutes. In order to choose the right camera system for your needs, you will need to ask yourself the following questions:
- How many cameras will you need?
- Does the monitoring software support any mobile devices?
- What level of security do the cameras offer to combat hacking?
- Do you want to connect your cameras wirelessly or with Ethernet cables?
- Is an HD quality image important?
- Do you want fixed cameras or do you need pan, tilt and zoom capability?
Creating a secure environment, which you can monitor and manage from any location, is a powerful tool that is now child's play to set up thanks to compact HD cameras and their accompanying apps.