The Benefits of Home Security Cameras

by Safety Connection

Tis the season for deals on home security cameras. And they can do much more than just record people trying to break into your vehicles or home. Here is some information shared with permission from the Buckeye-Grove Good Neighbor Project on Madison’s East Side:

Security cameras are recognized as an excellent deterrent to criminals, If a bad guy sees the camera, he may skip your home and move on to an easier target.

Home security cameras aren’t just useful for policing your property; they’re also helpful for keeping an eye on children, and pets when you can’t be there. Two-way audio on indoor cameras can act as an intercom, allowing you to see and talk to your family when you’re not home. Some home security cameras can be costly, but there are tons of options out there these days.

(And watch for Black Friday prices, and be sure to drop hints to relatives!)

A home security camera system is an excellent tool for home protection, and it can work both as a deterrent and a recovery tool. Burglars are wary of homes with visible security cameras. Plus, if a crime does occur, security cameras can help gather evidence. From property damage to potentially identifying criminals who break in, if you capture the action on camera, you’re more likely to be able to remedy it.

Did you know you can register your video cameras with the Madison Police Department?

Decide whether you want your home security camera to record footage continuously or based on motion. Recording continuously will make sure you don’t miss anything, but it will require a lot of Wi-Fi bandwidth and isn’t suitable for battery-powered wire-free cameras. The footage should be stored either on the camera itself (SD card) or on a cloud-based server where you can access it for a period of time. The camera also should alert you to motion by sending a notification to your smartphone or tablet and quickly delivering clear, good-quality video of the event.

The power source is another key feature of a security camera. If you’re buying a wireless camera, look for one that’s powered by batteries or AC power (which means it plugs into a wall outlet). AC power is preferable but not always available where you want to install a camera. As a result, the ability to use both allows for maximum placement flexibility.

Other important features include:

  • Night vision for seeing what happens when the sun goes down unless you have a lot of motion-activated outdoor lighting installed
  • Two-way audio so you can hear and speak to whoever is on your property
  • A built-in siren and/or a floodlight for extra deterrents
  • A mobile app that’s easy for everyone to use

This graphic shows how 4 cameras could cover an entire yard:

Be sure to light your yard (with motion or timers) with LED lighting, and make sure you aren’t directing the lights into your neighbor’s windows!

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