Wednesday, March 24, 2010

FBI and Optimizing CCTV

Thanks to an article on, I took a brief look at an article on the FBI web page that discusses a new YouTube video produced by the FBI. The “Caught on Camera” video is billed as an instructional video designed “to show business owners how their security cameras can aid law enforcement investigations and maybe even help solve a terrorist attack”. According to the FBI: “Caught on Camera shows how to avoid common problems such as installing cameras in the wrong places, ignoring lighting and line-of-sight issues, and having administrators who don’t understand how the systems operate.” Instead of the usual talking-head type instructional video, this video uses a simulated investigation of a terror attack to look at how private CCTV systems can aid in a criminal investigation. Along the way an FBI spokesperson provides tips about how businesses can optimize the set-up of their CCTV systems. As I have said on a number occasions, this video will not make you a CCTV expert, but it will provide enough information to make a serious viewer more conversant with the requirements of a CCTV system. This will make it easier to talk with, and get the most out of a CCTV consultant. Even though this particular video concentrates on retail security CCTV systems, I still recommend that facility security officers take the 22 minutes necessary to watch this You Tube video. Oh yes, the article provides contact information to get a free DVD version of the video if you don’t want to get caught watching You Tube while at work. The FBI will provide free DVD’s to “to members of the law enforcement community, business owners, CCTV vendors, suppliers, contractors, and educators”. All they require is for you to provide “your name, position, agency, street address (no post office boxes), and telephone number”.

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