Surveillance has been a part of our everyday lives since the early 1980s, and has been used for a variety of purposes, including as a deterrent to crime and for investigative purposes. While there has always been a degree of controversy about the use of CCTV in public spaces, the majority of security camera installations in the UK are now operated by companies and private individuals, rather than the state.
It perhaps goes without saying that CCTV and related technologies have progressed in leaps and bounds since their initial widespread adoption in the 1980s, and many modern security systems include such technologies as facial recognition, motion detection and automatic number plate recognition – as well as seamless wireless integration with smartphones and other devices.
But how has digital defence technology seeped even further into our everyday lives? While we, as members of the public, have largely grown used to the presence of surveillance technologies in the streets, in shops, on public transport and even in the workplace, recent developments now mean that property owners are able to implement their very own digital defence and surveillance technologies in their homes.
We all want to protect our property and families, and now peace of mind can be achieved. Here are the latest advances we have seen, and continue to see, in digital defence technology across the globe.
Domestic Security Cameras
While security cameras have been commonplace in public spaces and commercial premises for decades now, the development of technology in more recent years has made the installation of domestic security cameras more convenient and affordable. While some prefer plainly visible cameras as an active deterrent, today’s cameras can be small, unobtrusive or even concealed, while still delivering high definition recording. Recent innovations mean they can also be solar powered; removing the need to connect the device to the domestic power supply.
Many modern security cameras are equipped with infrared LED night vision, so you can have the confidence of knowing that your home is protected even at night or in poor light. Wireless technology means that the camera feed can be easily integrated with smartphones, tablets or PCs for instant viewing – and this can even allow homeowners to view a live feed from the camera while away from home on vacation, anywhere in the world.
Smart doorbells are arguably one of the biggest innovations in home security products in recent years. A smart doorbell has a built-in camera, and most also have motion sensors. So, when someone presses the doorbell, there will be a ring just like any other doorbell, but typically you will also receive an alert to your smartphone via your home Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, and using an in-built camera you will be able to see who is at the door. Many of the products on the market also have two-way communication, so you can talk with the visitor via your phone. A recording function also means you can save footage in the event of anything suspicious happening, and in common with most modern security cameras, many smart doorbells have infrared night vision capabilities.
Through wireless connectivity, homeowners can use smartphones and other devices to control their smart locks remotely. Smart locks typically can be locked or unlocked with the tap of a button on a smartphone or tablet app, with a dedicated digital key fob, or by entering a key code. Many systems allow temporary door codes to be set, for example to give to cleaners, workmen or relatives to allow entry to your home while you’re not there. Smart locks can be used on a standalone basis, but many users choose to integrate them into a wider home security system, connecting to CCTV, alarm sensors or a smart doorbell camera.
Top Tip: Installing home security products
The installation of digital security systems in your home or property is a big decision and not one to be taken lightly. It is not guaranteed that any of these systems will impact your insurance – either negatively or positively. But before committing yourself, weigh up the pros and cons and consider which solution – or combination of solutions – could benefit you best, or speak to a security system expert.