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How to Choose a Security System for Your Home or Business

by Staff Writer

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Security cameras mounted on a wall

Things You Need:

  • Map or blueprint of your property
  • Pen or pencil
  • Digital camera

A good security system in a home or business can be a mean the difference between security and calamity. You can improve the security of your home or office using security system components that address your specific needs. Surveillance equipment, such as security cameras and recorders, can help you keep an eye on your property. Motion-detecting lights, infrared security cameras, advanced door locks and similar devices can increase the effectiveness of any security system. This article will help you determine your specific surveillance and security system needs of your home or business.

Choosing a Security System:

  1. Evaluate your area. What types of crime occur in the neighborhood? Identify whether theft, vandalism, violent crime or other risk factors are high in your area. Have you had the same repeated problems in the past? Make a note of the greatest risks and address them when choosing surveillance and security system equipment.

  2. Mark possible entrances. All entrances to your property are potentially vulnerable points in your security system. Doors, windows and even utility ports like air vents and power lines can be weak points and may need security cameras for surveillance. Mark these points on your map and make note of the problem area to be addressed.

  3. Evaluate lighting on your property. Well-lit areas are a deterrent to would-be vandals and criminals. Identify poorly lit areas, especially around entrances and exits on the property. Mark possible locations for motion-sensing lights and flood lights. Make sure to take night and day photos of problem areas to identify security problems. If new lighting isn't an option, infrared security cameras can function where light is scarce.

  4. Evaluate your internal security. If there are vulnerable points inside buildings or enclosures on the property, you may want to consider using combination or fingerprint door locks to your security system. Place security cameras in areas with sensitive or valuable equipment or materials. Restricting access to sensitive areas and keeping them under surveillance decreases your risk of potential losses.

  5. Select security system solutions. Select solutions to the problem areas in your security system. Address lighting problems by adding motion-sensing lights to your property and removing obstructions like excessive plant growth. Add security cameras to keep sensitive areas under surveillance and use a digital video recorder to keep extended surveillance records. Upgrade locks on entrances and windows. Purchase time-clocks to keep track of employees coming and going. Multilayer your security system. Especially sensitive areas should be protected by locks, security camera surveillance and alarms.

  6. Make your security presence known. Post signs announcing your security measures inside and outside. Place some security cameras in easily seen areas and make sure your exterior locks are maintained and clean. Just the knowledge that security system components are present is a deterrent.

Security Tips:

  1. Re-evaluate your security system periodically to make repairs and to identify gaps in your surveillance or loopholes in access to restricted areas.

  2. Put yourself in the criminal's place. You know where things of a sensitive or valuable nature are kept. If you wanted to steal them, what tasks would you need to accomplish to do it? What could be changed in your security system to make those tasks impossible?

  3. No security system is perfect. There are always points to improve. Keep up-to-date on security and surveillance technology and take advantage of new products and ideas.

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