Surveillance Secure is a full service provider of IP, digital, wireless and covert surveillance cameras, CCTV installation services and alarm systems, servicing clients in the Washington D.C. - Baltimore region and throughout the country.
Video surveillance is now a mainstay of the security industry for use in businesses as well as in schools and other public facilities. However, the idea of network video and audio systems is becoming more readily available, and the benefits when it comes to business efficiency and disaster or emergency preparedness are easily notable. Here are some of the benefits for your organization to consider when it comes to using a networked audio and video system.
A Public Address System
Schools are a great example when it comes to the benefits of a networked public address system. When your audio and video systems are linked, you can provide morning announcements to all students and faculty or even select certain zones to speak to. This can help the school to run smoothly.
However, the security benefits cannot be understated, especially if a fire, a bomb threat, or an active shooter situation arises. Being able to quickly communicate with the entire school or certain sections of the facility can save lives, especially when a lock-down or emergency evacuation becomes necessary. Obviously, these benefits can also carry over into the workplace.
Automated Announcements and Alerts
Whether at a school or work facility, there may be automated announcements that need to be made throughout the day. A networked audio system can ensure that bells are heard at specific times of day to indicate lunch, different class periods, shift changes, or to provide other notifications.
Networking your video system can also help you to provide rapid confirmation of an emergency alert. For example, if a smoke alarm sounds, a networked video surveillance system can allow you to see the location and size of the fire or if the alert was set off by a careless worker or student lighting a cigarette against facility policy. This can reduce the disturbances caused by a false alarm and allow you to get everyone back to their desks or workstations as quickly as possible.
Perimeter Alerts and Other Security Benefits
Networking your video and audio systems can also have other preemptive security benefits. For example, an automated system can provide a prerecorded message or sound to chase off trespassers or loiterers before the authorities have to be involved.
To get all of these benefits and more, be sure to have your networked audio and visual systems installed by Surveillance Secure. Our Maryland-based security experts can help your business or educational facility to provide efficient protection for workers or students. Call 877.388.1248 today to learn more.
Additional Resources on Networked Video and Audio Systems:
Surveillance equipment can be very useful in both residential and commercial applications. Whether you want to use video or audio recording to protect your home or business, most states have laws in place that outline regulations for use the use of electronic recording devices.
The regulations differ for every state and for whether audio or video surveillance is used. You need to be sure you’re in compliance with these laws when using recording equipment. Here we review Maryland surveillance video and audio recording laws.
Audio Recording Laws in Maryland
In the United States, there are twelve states where audio recording cannot be done without the consent of every person in the conversation. Maryland is one of those states.
Most types of audio recordings are illegal unless all parties know the recording is taking place. Under Maryland law, in both residential households and in a place of business, people must be clearly told that audio recording is happening.
In some situations, such as a phone call, implied consent is enough. You’ve likely heard “this call may be recorded for quality and assurance purposes” while on a call. If the person hears this and proceeds with the conversation, this is legal even though the person hasn’t given explicit permission.
If you do record employees or people at your home under any other circumstances in which all parties are not aware of the recording, this is a felony in the state of Maryland which could mean imprisonment of up to five years, a fine of up to $10,000, or both .
What About Video Surveillance?
Video surveillance is a bit different than audio surveillance under Maryland law. It is legal in Maryland to use surveillance video in your home, including on your porch or lawn, without consent from the parties being recorded .
However, it is illegal to use hidden surveillance cameras in places where people expect privacy—these places include bathrooms or dressing rooms. Deliberately using video to record people in their respective private residences or in a private place without their consent is considered unlawful in the state of Maryland.
Both audio and video surveillance can be beneficial for homes and businesses that want more security. However, complying with Maryland law is important. Exercise caution when using audio recording and be sure to notify all parties involved, but know that video recording is usually legal without such permission.
Do you have surveillance equipment in place at your house or office? Are you in compliance with Maryland’s laws for audio and video recording? Contact us at Surveillance Secure to learn more about how we can help you conduct legal surveillance to keep your place of work or your home safe!]
Surveillance Secure is proud to announce the launch of their new nationwide franchise opportunity to serve the growing commercial electronic security market. For professionals looking to open their own security business, utilizing the established and proven brand, training, processes and marketing of Surveillance Secure, this franchise presents an attractive business opportunity to meet the needs of this growing industry.
Since 2006, Surveillance Secure has served the commercial electronic security market in Maryland, Washington D.C. and Virginia, recording significant revenue growth by providing integrated security systems backed by professional service and support. The security demands of commercial, government, religious and educational clients have grown dramatically in recent years, requiring professional security firms who are able to design, install and integrate technology including security cameras, access control systems, video analytics, GPS vehicle tracking, cloud storage and alarm/video monitoring services. This technology is in turn supported by Surveillance Secure with best-in-class service plans and support, ensuring operational efficiency and ease of use and access.
As these commercial security requirements increase nationwide, it’s become clear that what a franchise with a reputable and well-established company such as Surveillance Secure offers to meet this greater demand. The commercial business segment is looking to strengthen their comprehensive safety and security solutions for facilities, employees, and merchandise.
Surveillance Secure will be providing the necessary resources, training, financing and support to new franchisees, working closely to help them grow their businesses and recognition in their respective markets. Franchises will also enjoy large protected territories, robust marketing support, attractive recurring revenue and an ability to be in business quickly.
“We are very pleased and excited to launch our security franchise offering and are looking forward to meeting the growing demand of individuals looking to own a commercial security business.” said Kim Hartman, CEO for Surveillance Secure.
Rob Gazzola, Vice President for Franchise Development for Surveillance Secure, will be heading all franchise development and sales efforts for the company. Rob brings over 20 years of experience in business development in the technology industry to his work with Surveillance Secure.
A video surveillance system can play an important role not just in the security of an industrial or manufacturing facility but also in the safety of the workers. Surveillance cameras give you the ability to do everything from examining what went wrong following an industrial accident to potentially stopping one from happing in the first place by having a supervisor observe an unsafe situation and act quickly to correct it.
However, to provide these benefits, you have to use the right surveillance cameras. Here are a few surveillance camera features that are must-haves in an industrial or manufacturing setting:
An explosion-proof camera is a must in the event of a major industrial accident. If the camera doesn’t survive the accident, you may lose valuable footage that could show what happened and help prevent future situations from recurring. While you work hard to ensure such an accident never occurs, you should still be prepared to deal with the aftermath if it does.
In certain situations, a thermal camera is a must. First of all, it can allow you to see if any equipment, chemicals, or other substances are overheating. This is not something that can always be detected visually, and even temperature gauges may at times malfunction and fail to provide a warning of the overheating that is occurring. Thermal cameras also allow you to locate people in low or no visibility situations due to darkness, power outages, smoke, or other conditions that can affect direct line of sight.
Heat resistant cameras are now made that can operate under extreme temperatures and conditions. This allows you to have cameras where you may not be able to have workers. Yet, you can still keep an eye directly on the automated processes that are being performed in order to maintain safety.
The Surveillance Cameras and Systems That Your Industrial or Manufacturing Plant Needs
To receive professional help in choosing and installing the best surveillance cameras for your operation, call Surveillance Secure today at (877)388-1248. We offer the surveillance system design and camera options you need in order to protect your business against both external and internal threats.
Employee theft is a huge threat to companies today. Business owners of all sizes and industries need to be aware of common threats so they can put preventative measures in place to stop them.
Fraud can be particularly impactful on a small business. Small companies are typically victims of employee theft because they have fewer controls in place, which can make them more vulnerable .
Here are a few common retail employee fraud trends and what you can do to stop them from affecting your business.
How it happens. Employees allow friends of family to shoplift or give them things for free or at a low price. The employee may ring up items the person is buying, but not all the items, therefore allowing them to steal.
Employees at both distribution centers and physical store locations preparing packages for shipping may also put in extra products for friends or family.
How to stop it. It’s essential to have point-of-sale (POS) transaction monitoring in place to prevent this type of theft. You can also be very clear with employees about policies surrounding theft. In addition, checking weight data can help you stop shipping fraud.
How it happens. The employee activates a gift card for a real customer, but then gives the customer a gift card that hasn’t been activated. The employee still processes the transaction so everything looks legitimate in the system, but they pocket the activated gift card.
Employees can also run a fake return and then place store credit on a gift card. They can issue these cards to family and friends and put large amounts of money on them.
How to stop it. More small businesses are using gift cards now, and based on a survey of over 1.4 million employees, 1 in 35 was apprehended for theft from an employer . Therefore, it’s essential to have an inventory system in place for both returns and gift cards. Do audits of these practices regularly—if one staff member is issuing a large amount of gift cards, this could be a red flag.
How it happens. Employees can manipulate inventory to make it appear as if an item was never delivered or stocked. This is typically easier to do at larger stores, and most stores have ineffective inventory systems in place to begin with.
How to stop it. Manipulating inventory cost the US retail economy $46.8 billion in 2017 and that number is increasing . Having cameras installed in your stockrooms and improving your inventory system can be helpful in preventing this type of theft.
Fake Cash Returns
How it happens. A staff member will find receipts from actual purchases, usually choosing receipts with expensive items on them. The employee will then process a return for these items and keep the cash from the register.
How to stop it. It’s important to audit returns and look at the time they’re occurring. If a lot of returns are happening during slow traffic times, cross reference these transactions with the employee conducting them. If a staff member is issuing a large amount of returns or returns during slow times, this could mean theft.
You can also put a policy into place that requires a second employee to check and restock the returned item, which could deter employees from attempting to steal in this way.
Credit Card Fraud
How it happens. While credit card fraud isn’t as common in retail stores, it can be hugely damaging to your business and its reputation. Employees can collect credit card information and then use that information to process false sales or returns and keep the cash or put the money on gift cards.
Employees also do this with mobile POS devices, such as smartphones that read credit cards, and it works best with repeat customers who wouldn’t necessarily notice an extra charge. Staff members typically do this with numerous customers.
How to stop it. Installing a POS camera behind the register can help identify suspicious employee behavior such as using the system frequently when there are no customers present. A locked system can also prevent or deter staff from accessing credit card information.
Don’t Let Employee Theft Impact Your Business
While most thefts are done by shoplifters and not employees, it’s still essential to be aware of employee theft. While most employees don’t steal from retailers, the ones that do can cause big damage to your company and its reputation.
By having simple yet effective monitoring systems in place such as POS transaction monitoring systems and stockroom cameras, you can help curb employee theft and protect your business and its assets!
According to one source, there were 23 incidents at US schools in 2018 where injuries or deaths occurred. Since the typical school year in the US is 180 days, that means an incident occurred approximately every eighth day of school throughout the year. You know your school needs to be prepared, and we want you to know how Surveillance Secure can help you to protect your students and staff.
Suggestions for Lockdown and Active Shooter Situations
Visibility in all lighting conditions – A well-prepared attacker may choose to use darkness as an ally. Surveillance cameras that can operate in both light and dark conditions can help security forces to track an attacker.
Access control systems – The capability of locking interior and exterior doors remotely is a must during a lockdown situation. You don’t have time, nor is it safe, to send staff to every door to turn a knob or key.
Integrated communication can save lives – What if an event occurs when no one is in the main office? Public address solutions can help by offering you access from both the main office as well as SIP-enabled phones or certain mobile devices, giving you the ability to make a campus-wide announcement from anywhere.
Electronic signage and emergency lighting – LED signage both inside and outside the building can provide additional warnings. Strobe lights can be used to signal an alert for the hearing impaired.
Two-way communication with classrooms, for early alerts – If each classroom has the ability to contact the main office directly, this can help spread an alert faster. Radio and intercom systems are quicker than picking up a phone to dial a number. Every second can save lives in an active shooter situation.
Let Surveillance Secure Help Protect Your Students and Faculty with Modern Surveillance, Access Control, and Communications Systems
We hope your school never has to deal with this type of tragic incident. But if one occurs, being prepared will save lives. Let Surveillance Secure help your school to protect the lives of your students and staff with easy to implement safety features. To learn about our surveillance, access control, and communication systems for school facilities, call (877)338-1248 today, or you can request a quote for our professional security system installation services via our website.
We are excited to announce our membership to the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce. It is a privilege to be joining an organization that supports the long term health and success of the county’s businesses. With their extensive working groups, events, and networking events, we look forward to being an active participant and supporting economic growth in the county and region.
Our membership with the Chamber will allow us to stay abreast of all local economic and regulatory developments. This membership allows Surveillance Secure to gain unique insight and knowledge for our entire team, and we look forward to supporting their efforts.
Many traditional callbox systems that control entry to apartment or condominium complexes require a phone line, but understanding the advantages of VoIP versus a traditional ‘landline’ can save you money and give you added flexibility in managing your system.
Voice over IP or VoIP is short for Voice over Internet Protocol and combines the technology of the internet with that of the phone system. VoIP telephony is based on digital technologies and during a call the voice information is carried to its destination in countless individual packets through the internet.
PSTN stands for Public Switched Telephone Network, sometime called “POTS” for plain old telephone service, is circuit switch based and relies mainly on copper wires or possibly fiber to set up a circuit to carry analog data between two points during the call.
The advantages for business of VoIP include making long distance calls or international calls a low or no cost, calls are easier to make and are safer as they have encryption to prevent any 3rd party interference. Other features may include file sharing, instant messaging, location sharing, audio video conferencing and lots of real time communication.
VoIP Advantages in multi-family apartment call boxes
Surveillance Secure installs VoIP call boxes at its multi-family apartment and condominium clients for several reasons.
Many new residents move from remote areas of the country, use cell phones, and intend to keep their phone number.
PSTN call boxes are usually able to use only the local area code to make calls to individual units in the building. Outside of that area code, long distance charges can apply.
More and more people are not installing PSTN land lines in their residences but relying only on cell phones for communication.
Mobile devices and wearables are just about everywhere in our modern world. How can your business or multi-residential facility capitalize on this trend to increase your security system in a simple, effective, and inexpensive manner? A mobile access control system may be just what you need.
What Is Mobile Access Control?
Access control is a key element of any security system. You need to be able to control who enters a parking lot, building, or even certain rooms within a facility. Users need to have credentials that can be presented to an automated reader. Providing the right credentials allows a person to gain access.
In the past, this meant providing key cards or key fobs to everyone and keeping them updated with current credentials. In modern times, biometrics can be used for access, but that may mean expensive readers. So why not provide access using something that your employees or residents already have?
Mobile Access Control Advantages
What are the benefits of mobile access control?
Cost-effective – Your employee or residents already have the device they need in order to pass the access control system. From smartphones to smartwatches and other wearables, these common devices can be used along with or instead of keycards and key fobs, saving you money.
Simple – Mobile access simplifies the process for the user, and that means less tech support. You don’t have to worry about someone losing their key fob or card. You don’t have to worry about the magnetic strip on a keycard getting demagnetized. This one of the many reasons that hotels are starting to allow guests to access rooms with a mobile device.
Secure – Credentials are sent to mobile devices digitally. This data is encrypted to protect each individual’s identity and credentials. You can remotely manage credentials, allocating and revoking them in real-time.
Scalable – You don’t need more cards when your company or property grows or you have visitors. You can simply assign more credentials to the individuals who need them.
Mobile Access Control Moves Your Security into the Future
Provide convenience for users while saving your company money. That’s the smart way to protect your business and your people. A mobile access control system from Surveillance Secure is the simple and cost-effective way to secure your facility. Call (877)388-1248 today and allow Surveillance Secure to help you watch your world. You can also request a quote online.
The leadership of Surveillance Secure understands the increasing importance placed by our clients on having their electronic security systems configured, networked and integrated with their IT infrastructure. To provide stronger support to meet this need, Surveillance Secure is pleased to announce the addition to our team of Victor Titarchuk, who will serve as our new Director of IT Services.
Victor brings over 20 years of experience to Surveillance Secure, encompassing designing IT infrastructure, engineering business processes, managing quality control of products and services. Prior to joining Surveillance Secure, Victor worked with clients that includes Fortune 500 firms, multinational IT networking firms, as well as universities and educational start ups.