What is a closed circuit television (CCTV)?

A closed-circuit television, commonly known as a CCTV system, consists of various electrical and digital devices used to monitor a particular area. 

Why is it called a Closed-circuit-television?

A CCTV system operates in the same fashion as a television broadcast, transmitting video and or audio data from one device to another through a circuit, except unlike a tv-show, CCTV footage is not broadcasted to the public, i.e. the circuit is closed.

Why do people and businesses use CTTV?

The most common use for CTTV is to catch criminals, i.e. for evidence of a crime. However, CCTV cameras are also a great way to prevent/deter criminals in the first place, which is why some people choose to use ‘dummy’ cameras or have clear ‘CCTV operation’ signs displayed.

There are several other reasons for using CCTV cameras, for example, in industrial sites, cameras are used to monitor areas unsafe for human entry, and traffic cameras can be used to monitor congestion.

What do you need for a CCTV system?

To operate a CCTV or security camera system, you will need several devices, such as:

  1. Video Camera: This device will record the video and, potentially, the audio of the area you would like to monitor. There is a huge amount of possibility when it comes to security camera options, and there are many different types you can choose from. 
  2. A display device: Most modern closed-circuit television systems can be integrated with your smartphone using a mobile app. Though many businesses still display their security footage on a tv or computer monitor, sometimes in public view, enabling and encouraging employees to monitor customers to consistently deter potential criminals.
  3. Internet connection or wiring: Depending on your CCTV cameras, you will need an internet connection or wiring (video and/or audio cables) to transmit your video to your display and storage device.
  4. Hard drives or a server: Though viewing live footage can prove helpful, it is best to record video/audio for later so that you have evidence in case a crime is committed. You can use avr or nvr to record locally or transmit the data to a server.