CCTV cameras and alarm system are now a fact of life and surround our daily lives. No one knows the exact number of cameras that surround us but, do we need to? The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) estimated there were nearly 6million CCTV cameras in the UK. You could have said the same about alarm systems which are now much more effective than they have ever been.
Whatever the number that’s still a lot of cameras, which may persuade some people we live in a ‘surveillance society’, Many would say that’s a good thing because of the massive effect it has on the prevention and detection of crime.
It is clear that CCTV and alarm system has become part of the modern British landscape and camera images protect businesses, homes and public property while providing police forces and security organisations with vital and effective tools to detect crime and put offenders where they should be. for them and others.
Some criminals don’t seem to realise they are being monitored on camera even realise they’re on camera, but that can only be a good thing as they are more likely to be unprepared and careless in the approach. It is the same with alarm systems, they are breaking blissfully unaware until they hear the alar.
However, some do see them and as a result they will stay away from where they can see CCTV and alarm defences and look for an easier victim.
With smash and grab offenders the story is different. They rely on a quick in and out, covered with hoods or similar before the police can arrive. Where smash and grab is used It is necessary to have a different crime prevention approach, hardening the target, using various types of hardware like anti ram posts, making it making it more difficult to break into premises.
I have recently seen stolen JCB vehicles used to bulldoze their way into ATM to try to pull the ATM out of the wall. This type of crime also has to beaten with intelligence, gathering and analysing the offender’s methods and patterns of crime. Even so CCTV and alarm systems still play a part as far as monitoring sites and detection and response is concerned.
It is important of course that where CCTV images used for evidence must have been properly obtained and in compliance with the CCTV Regulations to be of value in court. In some cases, it is just a matter of identifying the offender or their vehicles and the images are not used in court, but how much better it is to ensure as a monitoring station that all your images are first class. and as a customer you acquire first class state of the art equipment.
Cliff Unwin – UNIQWIN Security and Facilities