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network ip cameras

Why You Need IP Security Cameras

Security camera systems have made great advances over the years. From traditional analog CCTV technology to IP networking, security camera quality and features have improved to provide better monitoring and security. Some of these enhanced benefits include higher resolutions resulting in clearer images, fewer cameras covering larger areas, and thus, a lower total cost of ownership. Many businesses and homeowners are opting to trade up to network IP security cameras, network video recorders (NVRs) and cloud-based storage for more convenient and affordable security.

Network IP Cameras & Assisted Living Communities
Aside from protecting homes and company headquarters, assisted living communities can also reap the benefits of installing network IP security cameras.

In the way that security cameras deter burglars from targeting your property, in assisted living facilities, the aim is to deter abuse and neglect. By strategically placing these cameras in and around the facility, family members can put their worries at ease by reviewing stored footage to ensure that no mistreatment is taking place and that the staff is providing the proper care. For facility managers, video surveillance footage can provide evidence should an employee or resident be charged with abusive behavior.

Network IP cameras can also help the staff keep a closer eye on residents or patients. For those residents at risk for falls, staff can potentially prevent falls and injuries, or respond faster to those incidents. Medical equipment such as oxygen tubes may get dislodged, and staff can get to the rooms faster to fix the problems. In the case of memory units, the entrances and exits can be closely monitored to prevent residents from wandering outside of supervised areas, and can help protect the facility from possible intruders.

These security cameras can also prevent employee theft. Although we would rather think that this is uncommon, it is not unheard of for residents to report their belongings stolen. Whether these claims are accurate or not, cameras provide evidence to prove what really happened. Also, facilities often find that supplies may go missing. To counter these losses, IP cameras can document the incident or prevent it from occurring in the first place.

Of course, opponents of these security measures stand firm in their belief that it makes it more difficult to recruit staff and that employees will have trouble making sound decisions for fear of families challenging their actions. The problem with this stance is that numerous other careers and industries are under constant surveillance with little to no issues arising. Proponents of employee surveillance believe these measures will help workers to make better decisions and avoid any questionable situations.

Why Should You Upgrade To IP Security Cameras?
As stated, upgrading to IP security cameras comes with a myriad of enhanced benefits. Aside from the obvious video quality improvement, IP cameras are able to utilize your existing CAT5 or CAT6 Ethernet cabling, saving time and money on installation. The intelligent video features include facial recognition, motion detection, audio detection and people-counting, to name a few. Also, because they are connected to the Internet, owners are able to remotely view live video, search archived footage, and receive alerts via any PC, tablet, or smart phone.

Choosing the Right IP Security Camera
Because the various IP camera choices on the market, it can be a bit overwhelming. Here are some important features you should know about before choosing the best IP cameras for your needs.

  • Camera Types

There are three design options for IP cameras: bullet, dome and PTZ (Pan, Tilt, Zoom). As inferred by their name, bullet cameras resemble a bullet shaped and best suited for directional monitoring. They typically do not possess the capability to zoom in or move. Dome cameras are shaped like domes and ambiguously monitor areas, aiding in its role of deterring misconduct. “Speed domes” spin quickly to capture a broader range of images. Lastly, PTZ cameras are ideal for covering large areas. These cameras can move and capture different angles, thus, delivering the work of several fixed-point cameras in one single device. PTZ surveillance cameras may also be preprogrammed to scan an area or may be controlled remotely.

  • Resolution

IP camera resolution is the amount of visual data that can be captured and is measured in megapixels. It is often provided in horizontal and vertical pixel dimensions (ex. A camera that has 1280 x 1024 resolution is 1.3MP because 1280 x 1024 = 1,310,720 or 1.3MP). A higher resolution means the camera can capture more data, resulting in improved video clarity.

  • Power over Ethernet (PoE)

This allows you to transmit power over the data cable, which can run up to 100 feet. This will save you money and decrease installation limitations. In addition, the PoE standard 802.3af supports higher power ratings needed for motorized cameras (ex. PTZ).

  • Wide Dynamic Range

If you are monitoring an area that has challenging lighting conditions, you will want a camera that has good wide dynamic range (WDR). This will control the backlight and remove shadows to produce adequate footage in difficult environments.

  • IR LED

Infrared (IR) LED lighting is like night vision, allowing cameras to capture clear footage in low to no light conditions. IP cameras can see infrared light and when wavelengths reflect back, it is as if the room is illuminated and the camera can record video. Night vision capabilities improve with more IRLEDs and longer ranges.

  • Weather/Vandal Resistance

If you are using your surveillance cameras outdoors, be sure to choose weatherproof and “vandal resistant” cameras, which will often be IP66 rated and IK10 rated respectively. This will safeguard against water or dirt, which can interfere with your recordings or damage your equipment. Some cameras even offer thermostatic controls, which will help to prevent condensation forming over the lens.

When upgrading to IP cameras within your home, business, or in assisted living communities, be sure to evaluate your needs and review your options before making a final decision. If you need assistance, please feel free to call us at 888-203-6294 to speak with a representative and request a free quote. You may also visit to browse our inventory of network IP cameras and surveillance equipment.

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Secure Your Wireless Surveillance Cameras

Wireless surveillance cameras are also known as IP (Internet Protocol) cameras. Aside from securing your property inside and out, they are also often used as baby monitors. When used as baby monitors, wireless IP security cameras are often equipped to pick up audio as well as video.

With these cameras, video footage is streamed to a secure online space and you may view what is happening on a computer or via a mobile app or device. To ensure the security of your live feed, these cameras should offer encryption for your streamed data along with a username and password protected hub or app for viewing your footage.

Does your system or equipment lack any of these? Do you want added security for your wireless surveillance cameras? Follow these tips to ensure the most secure experience.

Network Security
Aside from securing your devices, the wireless network you connect to should also be secure. If you are using your home network, make sure your router is configured to use WPA2-based encryption. This will cover the connection between your cameras and router, while the stream’s encryption handles the rest.

You will want to steer clear of viewing your feed over open wireless networks. If you enter any usernames or passwords over these networks, they could potentially be “sniffed,” leaving you vulnerable. While these can be helpful when it comes to decreasing your mobile Internet charges, connecting to these open networks should not be done without the assistance of a VPN (Virtual Private Network).

Online Streaming
Having your camera stream footage online 24/7 can be helpful, but it also leaves you more susceptible to privacy risks. Your ISP may be hesitant to support your excessive bandwidth needs for your IP security cameras, and any bugs in your system could threaten the security of your feed.

Online streaming should only be done when you are certain the stream is secure. For the remainder of the time, maintaining a closed and secure network for your IP cameras on a secure network should suffice.

Password Protection
Cameras usually have the ability to be password protected, but you must manually enable it. Once this feature is enabled, you MUST change the defaults. Since the default usernames and passwords for most cameras are easily to find, this is the easiest way hackers will be able to access your feed.

Aside from ensuring that your cameras are password protected, you should be sure that any device you use to access your feed is password protected as well.  For example, if you access your feed from your mobile device, and somehow it gets lost or stolen, someone may have unauthorized access to your feed, as well as other personal information stored on your device.

With all this being said, the location and positioning of your cameras play an important role as well. In the worst case scenario, your feed gets broadcast to the public internet. Be sure that you position your cameras in areas in and around your property that you wouldn’t mind strangers seeing. For example, if you must install a camera in your bedroom, avoid pointing it at your bed or any area where you usually change.

You may also be worried about your webcams now, too. While threats may arise from time to time, there are ways to keep your webcam secure, such as disabling Flash, updating firmware, and using firewalls.

If you built a custom IP security camera using webcams, hacking threats should be minimal. You have likely used dedicated, reputable software and taken the time to properly configure and secure your system with a username and password.

Maintain Security
To make sure that you keep your devices secure in the future as well, make sure that you keep any and all devices related to or connected to your system up to date. This includes your camera’s firmware, client software on your PC or mobile device, and more. These updates often contain patches for any new threats, and without the proper update, your system could be left vulnerable to an attack.

How do you secure your surveillance system? Do you have any tips to share with us and your peers? Connect with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest.

For a great selection of IP security cameras, CCTV surveillance packages, and more, visit To speak with a representative about our products and services, please call 1-888-203-6294.

Secure Your Network IP Cameras & Devices

Network IP security cameras are often more attractive to users because they possess their own IP address and can connect to your network. So long as there is a network connected, these IP cameras can be installed nearly anywhere.

While their convenience and performance are alluring, strict safety measures should be enforced. Because they connect to your network, if not properly protected, they can become a vulnerable access point for hackers, and may threaten your overall network security.

If you are considering installing network IP security cameras and devices, please be sure to recognize the different ways to secure your network.

Understand Your Risk
Take a look at your network overall and understand the risks at hand. Research any potential vulnerabilities and figure out what needs protection. With comprehensive information on potential threats, you can better understand what needs to be done. Here are two questions you should ask yourself during this process:

  1. Do I need to separate any data on my network? If your data has no need to interact, it’s probably best that they remain on separate networks. Not only does this help security but it also aids in resource management. Physical wiring or VLAN can help to separate your networks.
  2. Do I have non-traditional network devices on my network? Be wary of any third-party connections and keep an eye on everything that’s connected to your system.  Data breaches have been in the news recently – don’t become a headline. Considering how damaging a data breach could be, it may be wise to increase your budget for security measures.

Secure Your Network Ports
Your network ports are the easiest and most accessible way for hackers to get in. Be sure to secure these entry points.

  • User/Administrator Credential Management: Always, always, ALWAYS change the default usernames and passwords on your devices. That is one of the easiest ways for hackers to gain access to your system. Create separate user and administrative logins, or utilize multi-factor authentication if available, for more protection.
  • Physical Port Security: The basic measure for this is port-based MAC address lockdown, which requires manual provisioning when a port link is lost and then recovered. Further measures depend on what your IP cameras can support. Whatever you have, you should always employ port-based/edge-connection cyber security on all of your network devices.
  • Video & Data Flow Protection: You don’t want strangers accessing your security feed. Be sure to protect your video feed from end to end. To do so, there are various encryption options, some stronger than others. Research your options and choose which method would be best for your system.

Know What Security Options Are Out There
Cyber security is always changing. Keep yourself informed and up-to-date on the latest news and information. You will want to focus on physical security and IT when you are searching the web, or attend seminars and trade shows that focus on those topics. With your ever growing knowledge, you can continue to improve and protect your network devices.

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For a great selection of network IP cameras and more, visit us online or give us a call 1-888-203-6294.

Installation Tips For Your Network IP Security Cameras

These days, network IP security cameras are favored over analog security cameras because they offer more advanced features. Benefits include improved image quality, remote accessibility, and simplified installation and integration.

To gain the full amenities of network IP security cameras (or any security cameras), proper installation and placement is key. Follow these tips to maximize the performance of your network IP camera system.


  • Be sure to match UTP connected devices (ex. couplers, modular plugs, wall plates) to the Category of the cable used and remain consistent throughout installation.
  • For optimal performance, by design and specification, cable runs in an IP camera system should not exceed 295 feet.
  • The bend radius for Cat 5e and Cat 6 must be limited to four times the cable diameter, and the acceptable bend radius is no less than 1 inch.
  • While installing Cat 5e or Cat 6 cable, the pull tension cannot exceed 25 pounds.
  • Limit the length before stripping the sheath from a cable in a wall box. That way the excess can be easily pushed back into the wall cavity.
  • Use devices like D rings, bridle rings, and J hooks rather than stapling Cat 5e and Cat 6 cables. This will prevent the risk of altering the outer form or dimensions of the cable.
  • Maintain a parallel distance of 6-10 inches between Cat 5e and Cat 6 cables and high voltage wires (120/240VAC).
  • Strip your Cat 5e and Cat 6 cables back as little as possible when attaching them to connecting devices.
  • Use either the T568A or T568B connection format and stick to that format for the entire installation for consistency.


  • Consider the environment where you will be installing your IP cameras. Take note of things like lighting and conditions when selecting the appropriate camera.
  • When considering placement, be aware of the field of view and potential obstructions.
  • Test the network connectivity in the area where you will place your cameras. Poor connectivity will compromise the camera’s performance.
  • With all outdoor cameras, especially in areas know for lightning, use surge protection.
  • Be sure that your PoE power supply is sufficient for your system. Compute your power load and choose the appropriate PoE power supply.
  • To protect your cameras, use vandal-proof and/or weatherproof housing accordingly.
  • While Cat 6 UTP is the best choice, Cat 5e should suffice for handling most video transport needs.
  • Using fiber instead of metallic will allow you to run camera signals at greater distances and with greater bandwidth.
  • Always use safe installation practices for the safety of yourself and others.

Concerned about doing your own installation? We offer installation services in the Los Angeles, Orange County, Inland Empire, and surrounding areas. Feel free to contact us at 1-888-203-6294 or visit us online at You may also connect with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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