8 Popular Types of Surveillance Equipment

There’s a wide array of surveillance equipment, which can be used to monitor audio, visual, and communication data. While some are widely available and easily accessible, others are financially or legally out of reach to anyone else except government agencies.

For security purposes, the surveillance equipment you get depends on the location, size and type of asset you’re trying to protect, and the value it holds. Consult a professional investigator and have them take a look at your premises.

The following contains eight most popular types of surveillance equipment:

1. Cameras

The capacity and versatility of digital cameras are getting more advanced. However, these gadgets are still affordable, even though they now come in smaller packages. Digital imagery can easily be analyzed and manipulated. For this reason, the market for analog cameras has seen a steady decline in the last few years.

Microelectronics allow digital cameras to be built into tiny packages for easy concealment. The relationship between small size and resolution is inverse, but these devices offer adequate capabilities when used near the target area. Once the footage is collected, software is used to collate and evaluate footage. Still, the ability to identify specific objects or individuals is limited.

In the market today, there are cameras with the ability to provide imagery beyond the visible light spectrum, but they are more expensive. The most common type of imaging is infrared. Still, there are some models that provide imaging with the help of other types of electromagnetic emissions such as x-rays or gamma rays.

2. H.D. Cameras

H.D. cameras have increased capabilities. They can record images at wider angles, and with a clearer resolution. A surveillance expert will most likely recommend these types of surveillance cameras because of their ability to cover wider areas. These types of surveillance equipment are also great for capturing special facial and body features such as tattoos and birthmarks. H.D. cameras are commonly used in lobbies, doorways, behind checkout counters, and in bank teller booths.

Due to their large-image formatting capabilities, such cameras are great for monitoring parking spaces on business premises. They also check for suspicious activities and capture license plate numbers. In big businesses or shopping complexes, H.D. cameras can be placed over roadways to record information on traffic violations and accidents.

3. Audio Surveillance Equipment

Frequently, small and easily concealable microphones are frequently used by private investigators to intercept conversations. Since they are unidirectional, parabolic microphones are perfect for crowded, noisy areas.

Laser microphones work by bouncing a laser on a hard surface. The vibrations caused by sound waves change how the laser light is reflected onto its transmitter, allowing sound recording. A phone mouthpiece can be remotely activated and used as a recording device, even when the phone is “off.”

4. Signal Surveillance Equipment

Signal surveillance equipment is used to intercept radio/electronic communications. An electronic bug can be attached to a switchbox or telephone line, allowing calls to be monitored or rerouted as desired. One can also use radio equipment to listen to conversations over the airwaves. This approach can give you variable results depending on the atmospheric conditions, whether the conversation is in code, and whether the transmission is dispersed or unidirectional.

5. Signals Tracking Equipment

Signal tracking equipment is like tiny radio frequency I.D. tags, which are inexpensive and can be placed on individuals or objects, and analyzed from a distance. Each ID tag transmits a unique identifying signal that allows scanners to detect the tagged subject.

Large transmitters such as GPS units use satellites to achieve a much greater range. These types of surveillance equipment are commonly used to track vehicles discreetly. GPS tagging is also commonly used by scientists to track wildlife migrations.

6. Computer Surveillance

Computer surveillance works by embedding software on the hard drive, mainly as a virus, and then recording the system’s activities such as data storage and internet traffic. Some specialized equipment are capable of detecting electromagnetic emissions from a computer keyboard. They can monitor and make inferences on what’s displayed on the screen or what’s being typed.

7. Smart I.P. Cameras

Modern surveillance systems and equipment include smart I.P. cameras and surveillance maintenance software, which allow organizations and homeowners to respond faster in case of a security threat on the premises.

For example, when this type of camera detects motion in an area where activity isn’t expected, it records and captures the motion, then sends the data to the concerned authorities immediately, and alerts them through their mobile phones. They can then browse the live footage remotely or search for video archives from wherever they are.

8. Unlimited Digital Video Recorder Storage

Typically, DVRs can record and store huge volumes of video data. When the maximum capacity is reached, the existing recordings are overwritten with new ones. Businesses using traditional DVRs risk losing historical data, which may be needed for reference in the future, and if the DVR gets stolen, all evidence is lost with it.

With modern DVRs, losing video data isn’t a problem. This is because you can download data directly to the cloud through the internet, giving you unlimited data storage, which is co-terminus with the surveillance system’s lifespan. With these types of surveillance equipment, you can access video information from as far back as the time the surveillance system was installed, to when it was dismantled. Some surveillance system video providers also offer a service that alerts you via email or text message when a recording device experiences issues.