10 Ways Security Professionals Should Utilize Video Cameras
In today’s environment, security professionals should consider installing or reviewing security cameras in their facilities for a variety of reasons. The topic of video cameras was discussed during the recent session “Review of Untapped Innovative Opportunities and Possibilities Around Healthcare Physical Security” as part of the International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety’s (IAHSS) 54th Annual Conference and Exhibition 2022 in Reno, Nevada. The slideshow of the presentation can be viewed here.
While security cameras can be found in hospitals and medical facilities, they can also be found in a variety of other environments, including retail, warehouses, banks, sports arenas, schools, construction sites, and traffic lights.
According to speaker Katarina Kemper, a healthcare public safety and security consultant, security professionals should consider three factors and their costs when installing security cameras:
Camera locations—inside or outside; access points, hallways, or other areas;
Camera type—fixed or a pan-tilt-zoom; network or analog cameras; and
Video retention—digital video recorders and data compression methods.
Also, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has a report regarding cameras and how to set up a complex closed-circuit television (CCTV) system.
There are 10 ways security professionals should utilize security cameras:
1. Asset Security
Company assets can include not only the merchandise in retail stores and restaurants but also physical spaces and products in all types of facilities. According to the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), asset security can include people, systems, and processes and recommends that security professionals pay particular attention to these critical assets.
2. Employee Monitoring
Kemper suggests that employers use cameras to ensure employees accurately clock in or out and advocates for their use in all areas so that if employees claim they were injured at work, the claim can be verified based on the date and time they say the injury occurred. Additionally, cameras can be used to monitor employees to ensure they are doing their jobs and capture footage of internal thefts.
3. Suspicious Activities
Suspicious activities, such as vehicles parked in odd locations, abandoned bags, open windows or doors that should be closed, or out-of-the-ordinary situations, can be picked up by security cameras so security professionals can be dispatched to the appropriate locations to investigate those situations.
4. Suspicious or Missing People
Security professionals can utilize security cameras to investigate missing person claims and reports that a missing person has been located. They should also be sure to report serious child-abduction cases to law enforcement, who can then issue an AMBER Alert. Highly sophisticated software can detect suspicious people, such as those constantly looking over their shoulders, moving too quickly, or standing in one place for too long. Security professionals should immediately investigate these types of situations.
5. Public Health Risks
Security cameras can be upgraded with a thermal imaging component to measure the temperature of individuals entering a facility, though, according to the DHS, these cameras cannot detect temperature through glass. These types of cameras were popular during COVID upticks and could become popular again if another COVID wave happens or there is another pandemic or contagious illness. These cameras can also be valuable when doing contact tracing to determine whether multiple people have been infected with COVID or other infectious diseases.
6. Information Security
Security professionals should remember that the protection of their security cameras does not just extend to their physical safety; default passwords can easily be found online and should immediately be changed to passwords that are not easy to guess, such as those that contain lowercase letters, uppercase letters, numbers, and special characters. The Total Security Advisor article “How Government Organizations Can Protect Their Physical Security Systems from Cyber-Risk” advises security professionals to ensure their security cameras have an updated network design and are adequately maintained, ensure employees are properly trained on their operation, and protect against using vulnerable devices.