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Video surveillance: How important is it today?

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The last time you were out in a public place – whether it was a busy city street, a stadium, casino, airport, college campus or hospital – did you notice any video surveillance cameras?  Even police officers are wearing body cameras, have you noticed them?

Over the last ten years, the use of video surveillance cameras and other security devices has grown and become increasingly commonplace. In fact, analyst firm BIS Research forecasts that the global video surveillance market will grow to over $77 billion by 2023.

Many of us don’t think twice about the cameras watching us. Do you feel safer with them around, or that they are an invasion of privacy?

Many organizations are recording all activities happening within their environments and storing that video data. They may see a crime happening via a security camera in real-time and send security guards or law enforcement officers out to the scene immediately to address the situation. The retained data might be recalled at a later date, to examine activities that happened in the past, to solve crimes.

Many of the surveillance cameras you see today are high-resolution IP cameras. These devices send footage back to a monitor that displays what the camera sees. This technology uses a closed signal so that only the connected equipment can view the content, unlike television broadcasting. Each camera, and there might be hundreds or thousands of them, is connected to a central video surveillance management system (VMS).  The organizations that employ video surveillance systems need to securely retain massive amounts of video content that these devices produce, for a period of time based on their industry requirements and security strategies.

This is where Qumulo hybrid cloud file storage comes in. We provide a simple-to-use distributed file system that seamlessly integrates with many popular video management systems such as Genetec Security Center, and Milestone Systems XProtect.

Are all these video surveillance cameras and other security devices really necessary?  

If we look back in recent years, sadly, there are many instances where video surveillance played a critical role in solving terror attacks and other crimes. In many of these situations, the FBI and local law enforcement agencies could stitch together video surveillance footage from many sources, including the actual crime scene, as well as from surrounding businesses. They use this footage to identify and track the suspect’s movements to identify the prime suspects and make arrests. Imagine how long would it take to make identifications and arrests if there were no cameras available!

There’s no doubt that this technology will continue to evolve and advance, and change our lives as citizens and consumers. Examples from the past show that video surveillance has made a very real and critical difference in bringing terrorists and criminals to justice.

Knowing these devices are around us, and that security people are monitoring them, makes me feel safer.   


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