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Self-Storage Video Surveillance: Choosing a Vendor


Choosing the right security vendor is a bit like developing a budding relationship into a happy marriage. You want dedication, mutual respect and the ability to keep promises. Every self-storage facility has different requirements for its security system, so owners and operators should seek a vendor compatible with their particular needs.

As a self-storage operator, you’re looking for actual protection ... not just the illusion of an impermeable perimeter. Knowing what services you have at your disposal will help you determine which security supplier can help you achieve the best system for your facility. Some sites need intrusion detection, keycard access, video surveillance or even a combination. This article concentrates on video surveillance.

Not all facilities use video surveillance. Some operators install it only to protect employees. Others use it to protect everything within the confines of the facility. Some go beyond the installation and actually monitor security cameras.

Why is video surveillance a good choice for your location? The answer is simple: It’s the next best thing to being there. You may have experienced theft or vandalism in the past with no clue as to who the perpetrator was. But with video, you can see footage of the crime and, in many cases, you’ll be able to identify the doer. Many businesses choose video surveillance as part of their overall security solution because of the nearly conclusive evidence it creates, especially during prosecution. They strive to get the most out of their investment.

Security Recording Options

Protecting your customers’ stored property helps your facility’s bottom line in more ways than one. You not only protect yourself against theft and potentially related lawsuits from customers, you create a service differentiator. You’re able to cite your security system as a feature in your marketing message and sales presentation—not only can customers store their belongings, but they are protected. This creates a sense of heightened security that influences their decision to choose you over competitors.

Video cameras and systems differ in their purpose. The security vendor you choose should tell you the methods that will give you the best type of image capture for your needs. More robust equipment usually costs more but can last longer, and will be able to be upgraded along with improvements in technology. Internet-protocol (IP) cameras, also referred to as network cameras, are an example of a robust product.

When seeking a vendor to install your video system, ask about data-storage options. Some systems record to an onsite storage device such as a digital video recorder (DVR). However, video hosting and offsite recording are becoming popular alternatives.

Offsite hosting and recording offers several advantages. Since the video is hosted online, recordings are safely stored off site. You also don’t need to worry about someone stealing or destroying your onsite recording device. And you always have access to the video when you need it through a Web interface. Since the video is online, you’re also able to grant access to first responders, such as the police, so they can determine the type of response team to dispatch.

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