They're everywhere-in shopping malls, offices, and at intersections. Security cameras are as much a part of every day life in America today as sports and apple pie, but contrary to popular belief, security cameras are younger than most Americans may think.
The Beginnings of Security Cameras
A security camera, also called video surveillance, is basically closed circuit television (CCTV). Closed circuit television is made up of a single video camera or several video cameras used to record images that can be viewed live or recorded and viewed later through the use of a VCR or DVR. Closed circuit television monitoring can be traced back to 1969 when police security cameras were installed in the New York City Municipal Building. This practice spread like wildfire throughout the U.S. and by the late 1980s, security cameras had become a staple in businesses that were susceptible to robbery and theft such as convenient stores, banks, and retail shops.
Modern Security Cameras
Today, security cameras are not only popular for providing peace of mind and as a safety precaution, but they are also a deterrent and a diary of the day's events. In addition to being used in just about every setting under the sun, at least where currency is concerned, security cameras are also used in offices, hi-rises, and in most home security systems. Security cameras of yesterday were typically low definition, black-and-white systems with extremely limited capabilities. Today, security cameras are sophisticated high-definition color systems with limitless capabilities.
Types of Security Cameras
There are many different types of security cameras on the market today but a few popular types include day/night security cameras, wireless security cameras and dummy security cameras. Day/night cameras are relatively new, and they are used in areas with little or no light. An extra sensitive image chip allows the camera to record a clean picture without using infrared lighting. Day/night security cameras can record up to 25 feet in low to no lighting conditions. Wireless security cameras are small battery-operated or AC-powered cameras that can be hooked to a television set or viewed live via the Internet. They can also be the size of a silver dollar and used to record activities to be viewed at a later time. "Dummy" or "fake" cameras are designed to look like cameras and they are used to trick the potential thief into thinking they are being recorded.