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How to Effectively Set Up a Wireless Surveillance System

security surveillance camera

Knowing what’s happening in your home through security cameras provides added assurance that your property and your loved ones are safe. Photo by Torkild Retvedt via Flickr, Creative Commons

Surveillance cameras nowadays provide assurance and security to families and homes thanks to its actual video footages that are used as actual evidence should a crime happen. Because of these, people are being more aware of the importance of this item for their home security. NBC news reports that the IMS Research indicates an estimate of more than 30 million security cameras have been sold in the U.S, from 2001-2011. And it is expected to grow higher, since a market research study estimates that the video surveillance market around the world will reach $37.7 billion by 2015. The Park Associates’ 1st Quarter study in 2014 even shows that 17% of the U.S. broadband households have network security cameras installed. 

It is necessary nowadays to set up a complete home surveillance system for enhanced protection for your household from intruders. Seeing this need, people are mostly torn between choosing a wired camera or a wireless one because of the numerous wires that need to be run. Some have even raised their concerns of difficulty in running wires and not being budget friendly. Hence, many are opting to go wireless for their surveillance camera systems because it is cost-effective to install and easy to maintain compared with wired networks involving trenching and fiber cables. Plus, you will be needing less tools and accessories for indoor and outdoor installation which can help you save money. If you think installing a wireless security system for your home is difficult, the reality is that it is manageable and easy to do. Here are the ways on how to effectively set this up:

1. Check if you have the complete equipment at hand and assess if you need a surveillance system.

troubleshooting and installation tools

Never miss out on your wireless security essentials for better home surveillance.
Photo by Jim Pennucci via Flickr, Creative Commons

There are 4 main things that you need to have a complete wireless security experience. You need to have a stable WiFi connection or a mobile broadband, a laptop or desktop and your home router for your home monitoring station, and your preferred wireless IP surveillance cameras. There are lots of cameras to choose from, such as an outdoor or indoor wireless camera, depending on your security needs. You should also consider your immediate need for surveillance. Are you suspicious of your nanny when you’re in the office? Then it would be best for you to use a simple covert wireless surveillance system to keep a close watch over their every move. If you have a larger home, a complex but well-built setup will address your concern of having a large property to monitor.

Also decide if you will want to record your video footages or if you just want a direct feed for your monitoring. Assurance of your family’s safety by seeing who comes in and out of your house can be achieved by accessing a direct video feed, while longer surveillance of your home that can be used as evidence especially when you’re on a vacation will require you to record the said footages. To help you in recording videos, IP Cameras can be connected to receivers such as a Network Video Recorder (NVR) which can record and save your videos directly to a mass storage device or through a security DVR system so that you can easily access it anytime you need to review the video.

2. Install Cameras in Strategic Locations
Security for your family is something that should not be compromised. If ever you have the right equipment but it is poorly installed and located in the wrong places, it won’t give you the results that you want for your property and loved ones’ security.

Studies have shown that 34% of burglars break in homes through the doors, while 23% of them use windows as their secondary entry point. Most burglars access homes through windows, especially during the warm months since windows are unlocked most of the time. Seeing these possibilities, it is best that you install cameras to have a good coverage from your front and back doors, windows, and backyard to be alerted of an intruder present in your home.

Begin by installing the WiFi antenna and mount it on the back of your wireless surveillance camera. Attach the network cable from the camera to the router of your home network to ensure that it will be able to detect WiFi connections in your home. then, connect your camera to a power outlet. It is highly recommended that you place your security camera near a power source, to avoid using extension cords that will increase the possibility of dangling and exposed cords which can signal to intruders that they are being watched—and they will be more likely to cut those wires to prevent you from seeing their actions.

3. Configure Your Cameras for Better Security
A good wireless camera surveillance system setup should be configured properly, to avoid the incidents of intruders being able to gain access to your home since your camera can’t provide real-time footages. This problem can be solved by doing the basic configurations, the right way.

Test if your camera works well with your existing internet connection at home. It is necessary for you to have a good working internet connection since you want to see real-time footages instead of delayed video shots. Make sure that the location of your camera receives a good WiFi signal for it to function properly.

To access your camera through your wireless home network, install the software CD that is provided for you and configure the settings based on your preferences. Turn on your camera, and enter your IP address into your web browser to access your router configuration interface. Go to your computer’s Device Management tool and change the default settings, such as the camera’s alias, username and password. To secure your wireless networks at home to ensure that your neighbor doesn’t interfere with your wireless signals, check your internet connection if it has either a Wireless Equivalent Privacy (WEP), WiFi Protected Access (WPA) or WiFi Protected Access 2 (WPA2) as its security protocol. This will prevent others who can access your wireless applications and internet connection which may slow down your internet connection, and thus affect your camera’s performance.

The camera’s antenna serves as its receiver of wireless connection that transmits images and videos to your preferred recorder. Ensure that there are no huge obstructions between the camera and your router.

4. Set up Your On-the-go Access and Other Features
Nowadays, cameras such as Foscam units, offer features such as remote access and smartphone viewing in order for you to be updated of what’s happening in your home and its surroundings. Nielsen reports in 2011 that 40% of mobile users have smartphones, and the average smartphone user consumes 435 MB a month during the 1st quarter of 2011. Because of these, security has also developed in terms of access to allow people to have a reliable and on-the-go access through their smartphones for safety and added assurance. To make the most of these features, you need to set these settings properly through these easy steps.

Enable your camera’s settings by setting up Port Forwarding. This gives access to your router to allow outside traffic from viewing the camera through an assigned port number. This will give way for you to view your camera either by using a smartphone or through the internet.

Type in the IP address of your router in your web browser and choose the advanced settings for the Past Forwarding capability. Type in your preferred service name, and input “80” for the port beginning and port ending fields. Provide the IP address of your camera in the server or computer field. Do these steps for UDP and TCP connection types. You will then find your router’s IP address from the router configuration menu, found in the general or startup window. Take note of this IP address.

You will also need to set up the DDNS or the Dynamic Domain Name system to allow smartphone viewing and remote monitoring. Identify first your WAN address, which is your home network’s IP address. Access the camera’s login page by going to your web browser and input the WAN address and the camera’s port number. Change the port number to be able to access the other cameras located in your home.

After you have successfully enabled Port Forwarding and DDNS, you can now install a mobile app to be able to conduct smartphone viewing of your cameras at home and you can also view what’s happening in your home through the internet. If you plan to install additional cameras, follow the same instructions and assign a unique port number and IP address for each camera.

5. Test If Your Cameras are Working Properly

Foscam wireless surveillance camera

It is highly important that you do an initial test of your wireless cameras to ensure that they are working perfectly and ready to capture intruders’ suspicious movements.

After doing the basic configurations and setting up your camera’s added functions, you can test if it is working properly by going through your browser, and typing its IP address in your browser’s web address bar. If you’re driving or in the office, access your mobile app to check if you can clearly see the videos that are transmitted by the cameras.

Proper Setup for Secured Homes and Loved Ones
A safe and secure home consists of an environment that is free from intruders, burglars, and other mischievous people that are ready to attack and hurt your loved ones, thus removing the peaceful and homey feeling that you’ve always wanted for your loved ones. Thus, it is necessary for you to have a proper home security camera system that will allow you to monitor your home at all times, with the aid of the internet and wireless cameras. These security items must be properly set up and positioned, so you are sure to have a good video surveillance of every activity in your home, including unexpected incidents which can help you pinpoint the intruder and provide evidence for law enforcers to convict intruders.

If you need help in choosing the right wireless camera and setting them up properly, feel free to talk to our friendly Alarm System Store representatives who will guide you and provide you expert advice for your home wireless camera and other security needs. Doing such will help you ensure that your loved ones are safe and secured thanks to a well-managed wireless camera surveillance system.

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