How to Install Security Cameras to Protect Them from Vandalism
Security cameras can be a strong safeguard against theft, serving both as a deterrent against thieves and a tool to help law enforcement identify and capture suspects in order to recover stolen property. But experienced thieves are wary against security cameras, making them a potential target of vandalism. This makes it important to know how to install security cameras to prevent vandalism if you’re going to use them effectively. Here are three surveillance system installation strategies you can use to protect your security cameras from vandalism.
Place Cameras in Elevated Areas
One way to protect your security cameras is to place them too high for criminals to reach. At least 15 feet should be considered a minimum height to prevent trespassers from reaching cameras with a long stick. However, if there are stones in the area that could be picked up and thrown, you may wish to consider mounting your surveillance system installation even higher.
A high wall, rooftop, tree or pole are some possible locations you can use to elevate your camera. Make sure there are no means nearby that could be used to climb and reach elevated cameras, such as ladders or easy-to-climb tree branches.
Invest in Vandal-proof Camera Housings
Another way to keep your surveillance system installation secure is to invest in vandal-proof camera housing. To be vandal-proof, a camera should be enclosed in a housing that can withstand heavy impact such as a blow from a hammer or baseball bat. Manufacturers design cameras to comply with an international standard impact measurement system known as IEC 62262 in the United States and EN 62262 in Europe.
Under this system, enclosures for electrical equipment are tested against impact from a hammer to verify that they remain rigid enough not to suffer deformation of more than a tenth of a millimeter. Enclosures are rated on a scale from 0 to 10, with 0 representing an unprotected enclosure and 10 representing an enclosure capable of withstanding an impact of 20 joules, equivalent to the energy of an 11-pound object thrown from a distance of 15.7 inches.
Enclosures with the highest impact rating, IK10, should be able to withstand anything vandals can throw at it short of a free-falling hammer. Combining vandal-proof housing with elevation should provide your camera with maximum protection.
Get Creative with Your Camera Placements
Another strategy to protect your security system installation from vandals is to place your cameras creatively in locations where thieves can’t see or reach them. There are many ways you can do this, with the specifics varying based on the layout of your facility. Here are a few ideas:
One way to protect a camera from vandals is to place it somewhere where they can’t see it. This strategy works best for cameras that are intended to identify intruders rather than deter them. For instance, if you run a commercial rental property and you want to set up your security system so you can help law enforcement identify intruders, you can set up a concealed camera at a point burglars would have to pass in order to enter the premises, such as at eye level inside a lobby door frame.
Similarly, if you run an auto dealership, you might place a camera inside the hood of a vehicle strategically parked at a location where you can film the perimeter of your lot. Alternately, a sign could provide both concealment and elevation. Similar strategies could be deployed at a construction site. For instance, you might mount a camera on the crane of a vehicle so that it’s too high for criminals to notice or reach.
Elevating your cameras, using impact-proof housing and creatively placing them can help keep your security camera equipment safe from vandals.
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