How Video Analytics Help Your Business
Security cameras have come a long way from the large, square bricks feeding you a grainy black-and-white image. Today’s cameras are smaller, sleeker, and far more advanced internally, too. The cutting-edge surveillance network of the day has motion-activated Infra-Red night-vision cameras, 4k quality, Pan-Tilt-Zoom functions, and remote viewing capabilities. The most advanced surveillance systems are also equipped with video analytics software, turning your security cameras into a powerful business tool.
Auto-Tracking Security Cameras
The fundamental principle behind video analytics is people counting. This can be done a variety of ways, most commonly from an overhead camera. Some use thermal imaging to identify individual heat signatures – people – and track them as they cross a virtual line. Others distinguish people visually by using advanced recognition algorithms or by tracking motion.
However they do it, the accuracy of people counting cameras is dependent on their placement, field of view, and quality. Ceiling-mounted cameras with multiple sensors are generally most accurate for positional data because they compare two images to triangulate position. A single-lens camera has no true depth perception, but can still detect objects crossing a line or entering an area. For wider fields of view – and therefore more data to analyze – multiple cameras facing many directions might be used.
Video Analytics on the Edge
Line-crossing and object detection are common on-board software for cameras today. Full analysis was initially only available on a centralized server, requiring all footage to be transmitted before analysis. While still a viable solution, this limits bandwidth availability and storage space. Running the analysis on the camera side – “on the edge” – lessens the load on the server, freeing up processing power and storage by only sending the analysis and a small clip of an incident. The full recording is stored temporarily on the camera, ready to be transmitted and stored at request.
Video Analysis Applications
VCA is a valuable asset for your security staff, highlighting important events and flagging potential problems while ignoring irrelevant data. Your security cameras become a preventative measure in addition to an investigative one. Getting a series of alerts on suspicious behavior lets you intervene before an issue arises. Remember that while video analytics is a helpful security tool, it doesn’t replace your security guards or monitoring center – you still need people to respond to and analyze gathered data.
Security for Retail
In retail applications, video analytics can tell you a lot about your business. Store-wide people counting can give you a heat map of your building, showing you high- and low-traffic areas. You’ll also be able to see how long people stay in one area – useful for determining problems with checkout lines or finding out which products aren’t grabbing your shoppers’ attention. It won’t just show you where people went and stayed, though – the report can give you the directional paths as well, so you’ll know what areas your customers visit in which order. Lastly, facial and shape recognition gives you demographic data like gender and age group with ever-increasing accuracy. With this data, you’ll be able to tell what marketing, advertising, or layout strategies are working and which ones you need to rethink.
Industrial Security Solutions
Video analytics in industrial, manufacturing, and warehouse applications tend to work more in real-time to secure your business operations. Object detection allows a camera to alert you when problem occurs, like equipment failure or merchandise winding up somewhere it shouldn’t. Cameras can detect when a person or vehicle crosses a virtual line and sound an alarm. They can also let you know when you have a shipment coming in or out by watching for trucks on the loading dock.
The same analytics for retail can be used in an industrial setting to streamline your business. Analyzing previous footage can generate automated incident reports that can indicate problem areas. Path tracking and dwelling time maps can help you change your layout to make operations smoother.
Installation & Integration
As with all security systems, professional installation is the best choice for a surveillance system with video analytics. A professional consultation lets you customize a unique, flexible security solution for your business, and hiring a company to install and set up your cameras gives you a guaranteed warranty and maintenance. Whether you want to explore video analytics for your business or are curious about commercial security in general, contact Safe and Sound Security for more information.