Smile: You’re on Camera!

Ever wonder who is watching all of those surveillance cameras you see in airports, office buildings and retail stores? I always assumed it was an actual person — so I waved. However, not only is it not accurate that all cameras are monitored, it is also not realistic. Let me explain why.

There was a study done a few years ago where a CIA-trained operative was asked to watch a single monitor for suspicious activity. About an hour into the exercise, they rolled a tank across the screen. The operative did not see it. Why? Because the human eye is easily distracted and fatigues after consistently staring at the same object for an extended period of time.

Not to worry, video analytics software turns cameras into intelligent detectors of all sorts of things – heat, motion, quantity, etc. These smart cameras can eliminate the need for constant human monitoring. Here is how it works in the commercial real estate industry. Building owners and property managers install cameras in the interior and exterior of their building (these are two different types of cameras as the outdoor version has to be able to sustain the elements – heat, precipitation, wind, etc). During the day, cameras can be monitored by staff proactively or reviewed forensically for evidence. After hours, video analytics enable these cameras to send push notifications in the event of activity.

So, the next time you see a camera, smile! Someone might not be watching it at that exact moment, but if you are doing something you shouldn’t be doing….it’s being captured and reviewed.

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