Security Camera

As its name suggests, a security camera is a video surveillance device designed to improve security in your home, your office or any indoor or outdoor area that requires special monitoring.

Why install a security camera?

Whether it's to protect your home, work premises or a public space, video surveillance cameras guarantee a high level of protection. They are designed to prevent theft and damage inside the area monitored. A visible surveillance camera indicates that a monitoring system is in place and discourages most intruders.

Security cameras also allow you to monitor a location remotely using a control monitor (or your smartphone in the case of a connected surveillance camera. You can also ask a specialised company to monitor the footage; it will also install the security system and respond if there's an intrusion.

The footage taken can also be used in a police investigation to identify suspects or as evidence for your insurer of a burglary or damage caused by another person.

What's the difference between video surveillance and video protection?

Although the terms video surveillance and video protection are often used interchangeably, they refer to different applications of a video surveillance system. In both cases the idea is to install surveillance cameras for security reasons. However, whereas video surveillance involves using cameras in public or private places (businesses, a private residence, etc.), video protection refers to video security equipment that is installed on public roads and requires approval from the local authorities. Note that in both cases, a declaration may need to be submitted to the French National Commission for Data Protection and Liberties (CNIL) if the area filmed is open to the public. Discover all our products

How to choose a security camera for optimal protection

There are surveillance cameras for every type of use and every budget. Below are the main criteria to consider when choosing the right camera for your need.
  • Indoor or outdoor camera: both types of models are available. Choose a camera with a high protection rating for outdoor use.
  • Image quality: it's best to get a video surveillance camera that has a high image resolution, a wide field of view and good colour contrast.
  • Night vision: a surveillance camera needs to have infrared vision to ensure visibility both during the day and at night.
  • Audio quality: an audio recording without background noise might be important, particularly with cameras that are integrated into intercom systems so that you can speak to visitors.
  • Ease of installation: wireless cameras and cable-free IP cameras are the easiest to install. There's no cable to connect or conceal and you can perform the installation yourself.
  • Camera design: if the camera is highly visible it acts as a deterrent, although if it's discreet it's less likely to be vandalised.
  • Ease of use: setting up the masking areas, using the app in the case of a connected surveillance camera, etc.
  • Options included with the camera: motion detector, audible alarm, facial identification, floodlight, motorisation, ability to distinguish between humans/animals/vehicles, etc.
  • The range of the motion detector: if your camera has one, check the range of the detector and its sensitivity.
  • Video storage: some surveillance cameras store the footage in the cloud, while others store it on a local server or an SD card.
  • Power requirements of the video surveillance system: if your camera is battery-powered, check that it has a long operating life. If powered by the mains, a camera's power consumption might also be an important factor in making a choice, particularly if the system runs continuously and uses a lot of electricity.
  • Should you get a connected surveillance camera? If you have a Wi-Fi internet connection at the location being monitored, a connected camera is an option. You'll be alerted about an intrusion on your smartphone or tablet and can monitor your home remotely via an app wherever you have a Wi-Fi connection. Installing a connected camera is fast and easy.
  • Some surveillance cameras come with a subscription: this usually gives you more options for watching and storing footage. Intrusion response services are sometimes also offered.

The video surveillance camera: a key element in a security system

A surveillance camera isn't necessarily used on its own: it can form part of a larger video surveillance system including other cameras, a wired network, power supply devices, a mounting system, a recorder, monitors, etc.

For people who have a large area to monitor or for businesses, a security kit can increase the area covered by the video or secure multiple entry points. A kit usually contains several video surveillance cameras, a recording device, a control monitor (or several monitors), mounting screws and brackets for easy installation, an internet cable and power cable, and sometimes other accessories such as a remote control or a mouse.

A video surveillance camera can also form part of an intercom network. In this case, the camera is installed externally, near the gate or street panel, or outside the front door. Paired with an audio dialogue feature, the camera is used to identify visitors before allowing them inside. Some businesses have a similar system to check the entry points to their offices. In this case, the video surveillance camera may be at the entrance or in the badge reader area.

A video surveillance camera can also be combined with other devices such as an alarm. In this case, the camera's motion detector identifies an intrusion and the alarm is triggered, which may cause the intruders to flee and alert neighbours or the company's security staff. With a connected camera you can combine the local alarm system with a notification on your smartphone (and your family's phones if you like), which significantly increases your chances of reacting quickly.

If you have a connected video surveillance camera, your device can even be included in a home automation system that covers your home or offices. If there's an intrusion, the home automation system can for example trigger the alarm, turn on the lights and unlock the entry points to make it easier for the police or a security company to respond quickly.

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