CCTV on public transport – is it necessary?

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Public use of CCTV has been a highly controversial topic in recent years, with mixed emotions about their purpose, effectiveness and the fear of ‘Big Brother’ watching your every move.  However, there seems to be a growing number of circumstances where CCTV has proven to be for the benefit of ordinary individuals as well as the public at large. Take the recent reports on the brutish manner in which a 62 year-old man was man-handled off a train and then held face-down on the floor for 9 minutes.  This unpleasant incident was caught on CCTV last year, and without it perhaps the Authorised Officers responsible would have gotten away scot-free. Worrying Trend? Worryingly, this is not the first incident of its kind, nor is it a rarity.  The Age reported that around 10 million so called “contacts” occur every year between Authorised Officers and the general public.  All of this begs the question: do the public need CCTV on public transport in order to feel safe? Why CCTV SHOULD be installed There may very well be a valid argument that says – yes.  Not only would CCTV on public transport help keep members of the public safe from acts of excessive force, muggings or other violent crime; but it would also surely have a positive impact on vandalism, anti-social behaviour, and the harassment and abuse of staff. Of course, CCTV’s main benefit is as a deterrent – if people know they are being watched – they’re less likely to behave badly.  However, sometimes acting as a deterrent isn’t enough, and if things get out of hand, it’s good to...

CCTV really can catch them red-handed!

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The story about the News International editor, Rebekah Brooks’ husband, being caught on CCTV attempting to hide evidence from the police has been big news recently.  Not only did the CCTV cameras reveal the lengths that he went to in order to pervert the course of justice, but it also gave away every last one of his accomplices.  If ever there was any doubt about the value of having CCTV; this must surely have put it to bed. The bigger question here, however, is about the placement of the cameras themselves.  Had they been installed elsewhere or pointing in a different direction – Rebekah Brooks may very well have gotten away with her deception. So, what can you do to ensure your home or business security system is working effectively for you? Strategic placement of CCTV Placing your CCTV cameras to maximise coverage takes skill and an experienced eye.   Being able to recognise your home or business’ vulnerable zones takes professional knowledge and years of experience.  Badly situated cameras are unlikely to adequately protect you – these blind spots seriously compromise your security, so using a professional CCTV installer is recommended. Mix Camera types Rather than sticking to a standard full bullet camera or a dome; installing a combination of both not only allows you to capture a variety of angles and detail, but can also make it harder for an intruder to locate or be certain that they have located all your cameras (and avoid them).  Undetected cameras, much like the ones that caught Rebekah Brook’s husband and accomplices, can be the difference between catching criminal behaviour on...

Dummy CCTV: To Use or Not to Use?

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That is the question! So, you’re thinking of plumping for the cheaper option and installing dummy CCTV cameras around your home or business?  But before you do, there are a few things you ought to consider. Advantages -          Cost From a quick google search, it’s clear that dummy CCTV cameras are the cheaper option, which can be hugely tempting for business and homeowners looking to save money.  But is it false economy? -          Quick to install With a dummy camera, you can pretty much install it yourself.  There are no holes to drill, no electric wires to connect – and therein lies the real problem.  The reason they’re quick and easy to set up is because they’re not actually connected to anything, not even your alarm system. -          Good deterrent against inexperienced burglars Most false CCTV cameras can look convincing to the inexperienced eye, especially from a distance; but get up close and there is the possibility that your burglar will twig and gleefully carry on and break into your home or business. Disadvantages -          Potential lawsuit It may surprise you, but if you have signs saying something like: “CCTV in operation” but you’re using dummy cameras – you are creating a sense of false security – and opening yourself up to a potential lawsuit should things go wrong. -          They won’t fool experienced burglars The cheapest fake CCTV cameras have one very big tell – they don’t have a flashing LED showing that they are switched on and active.  Whilst some of the more advanced fakes do have this function; there is still no fooling a seasoned burglar...

Dummy CCTV Cameras: To Use or Not To Use?

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They look real, they have blinking LED lights, and some even come with warning signs. So, why not use them? In a previous article we spoke about the use of dummy cameras and how they can lower your insurance premium with an Eversafe security system. We quoted Leon Reid, a convicted burglar, as saying that a fake surveillance device could discourage would-be thieves from targeting a house. However, not all would buy into this theory. Those new into the burgling circuit may be fooled but more experienced robbers can tell a fake CCTV camera from a real one. According to Christopher Middleton in his piece featured in The Telegraph, “burglars bypass the cheap systems and spot dummy alarms a mile off.” As such, you should not be scrimping on your home security. The Case for Dummy Devices Those who are trying to balance their finances and stretch their budgets are more likely to find fake cameras an attractive option. After all, keeping burglars from entering your home is the main purpose for installing them, right? There is no need to fuss over the electrical connections and other things connected to using such devices. Some models which are solar powered even reduce the need for the homeowner to be mindful about replacing the batteries every now and then. Also, those subscribing to this option may also believe that despite the CCTVs capacity to monitor activity 24/7, they remain silent observers, unable to stop burglars from acting out their plans. Why It Makes Sense to Invest Although cameras may be silent observers, they provide powerful evidence that can help the authorities...

Surprising and Unusual Events Caught on CCTV Cameras

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Last week, we talked about Eversafe’s very own Paul Mase appearing on A Current Affair and explaining the role CCTV cameras play in ensuring home security. This week, we’ll continue on that theme and talk about security surveillance cameras. This time, the focus will be on the monitoring features of the devices and their unfailing capacity to record footage of any event that takes place in front of their lenses. A CCTV camera has no bias – it will record any activity within its scope of vision, regardless of who is involved and what is happening. Human eyes, on the other hand, may blink occasionally or even close for a few seconds or for a couple of minutes when overcome by drowsiness. Their owners may also choose to shut them or turn away from an unfavourable scene. Other than that, one can also choose to interpret the activity according to his or her personal biases, as well as certain socio cultural factors. This however is not the case with security cameras. As such, security cameras can be called “silent observers,” working day and night collecting video evidence of the day’s activities. Nowadays, these devices can be found almost anywhere in the world – on street posts, in commercial establishments, in schools, in nursing homes, in offices, and even in your own house! With this, you may wonder what sort of images CCTV cameras around the globe have captured. – Have they actually been instrumental in the resolution of a wrongdoing? – Have they been useful to their owners in any way? Yes they have – in fact, a good...