Most of the time, it’s commendable to try to do something yourself. Whether it’s replacing that faulty window motor in your car door, or putting together some Ikea furniture, you should feel a sense of accomplishment.
But don’t let that feeling make you forget what you should and shouldn’t handle on your own. A DIY approach is only as advisable as it is effective – if you can’t actually do the job, it doesn’t matter how much time or money you save. It’s just not worth it.
Unfortunately, with a lot of technology, developers like to tell consumers that they don’t need anyone’s help. They claim to offer simple deployment, provide automated start-up processes and wizards, etc.
This is often the case with new IP-cameras and video surveillance systems. Developers say they’re easy to set-up, but is that really the case?
Video surveillance continues to be a big industry – in fact, developers say they’ve never done better. A key reason for which is the fact that new and more capable technology has become more cost-effective, providing better value for developers and consumers.
But that doesn’t mean it’s perfect – not by a long shot. Unfortunately, video surveillance isn’t as simple as putting up cameras and turning them on. It’s a part of your business (or home) security, and as such, the process has much wider implications.
Don’t let the supposedly “smart” nature of these types of cameras fool you. They can’t follow security best practices or think for themselves. If you don’t know how to optimize them for your security purposes, then they won’t be, simple as that.
To be fair, the way these cameras are designed allows for a generally convenient user experience, allowing you to view streams through an app on your smartphone, control the devices remotely, etc. However, as with any network-enabled device, the more convenient they are, the less secure they are.
Probably not. In fact, Forescount researchers recently ran a white-hat experiment to test the security capabilities of IP cameras. They found that, under default configurations, these camera systems were extremely easy to penetrate, and even swap real footage for a fake stream.
Without the right skill set, it’s likely that you won’t know how to configure these devices to enhance their security. In setting up a surveillance system as simply as possible, you would leave your business vulnerable.
That’s not even considering how you have to manage these systems as a part of your business. Do you know how to implement robust and secure access management protocols? Who can access the footage, and who can’t? How access is provided?
These are the types of questions you need the answer to.
A key consideration is data storage – what are you going to do with all the footage you gather? At what interval will you archive or delete footage to make room for more?
That’s not all – as with any technology, from time to time the manufacturers will identify a vulnerability in their firmware, for which they will release a patch.
Be honest – how often do you update your software when prompted to? If you’re like most of us, probably not that often. Unfortunately, when it comes to IP cameras, this can also put you at serious risk of a breach.
Price point? Color HD video streams? Swivel and rotate capabilities?
Even beyond those considerations, you also have to think about digital security. VHS tapes can’t be hacked, but IP camera footage can. Even before installation and maintenance, you need to consider whether you know what to look for in a surveillance system’s security capabilities.
Encryption of your video feeds is a great way to protect yourself – this is something a professional would know, but a layman may not.
As you can see, there’s plenty to consider when it comes to your business’ video surveillance. Are you confident you can handle it on your own?
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