Virtual Guard Cameras

Physical vs. Virtual Guards

By Carlos Hazbun | CCTV, Central Station, Monitoring, Virtual Guard | No Comments

Physical vs Virtual Guards

What is the difference between a “real” security guard on your site versus a virtual guard who monitors your properties remotely? The most important thing to know is what they have in common: Both virtual guards and on-site guards are real people.

A physical security guard at your small business or job site is an integral asset to preventing crime. With boots on the ground, they can react quickly and prevent a theft or burglary. But, they can’t be everywhere at once. Let’s compare a physical guard to a virtual guard.

Virtual Security GuardOn-Site Security Guard
VisibilityVisibility Site-wide visibility via remote-access security cameras throughout property Limited visibilityLimited visibility
DependabilityCommand center is staffed with multiple virtual guards, to ensure coverage 365/24/7Subject to sick days, vacations, personal leave
TrainingECAMSECURE’s virtual guards are licensed and SIA-certified trainedOur sister company, CPS Security, thoroughly screens and trains all on-site security guards
CostECAMSECURE customers have saved as much as 70% on security costs by using virtual guardsOn-site guards cost about $12/hour x 4 guards x 1 year = $100,000 annually

What is a Virtual Security Guard?

Unlike the physical security guard, a virtual security guard is stationed remotely and monitors the premises through a series of cameras, providing real-time visibility throughout your site.

They don’t have to chase after a potential criminal, struggling to remember specific details such as their face and color of clothing. The camera captures all and can follow the perpetrator out of the area. While the virtual guard is tracking the potential criminal, they can call upon law enforcement in an instant. With an eyewitness to someone on the premises, law enforcement will respond faster.

An on-site security guard is limited to what their eyes can see – if they are on the phone, talking with a visitor, or making rounds, they can’t see what they can’t see. Not so with a virtual guard. With multiple people monitoring your site from the virtual command center, your entire site is secure 24/7. With motion-sensing cameras, virtual guards know exactly where to look should something happen.

How do Virtual Guards Work?

ECAMSECURE’s virtual guards are professionally trained and are licensed and SIA-certified. They use two-way radios and speakers integrated with the cameras, to interact with intruders, warning them off, rather than physically confronting someone and possibly putting themselves in danger. They can easily verify if someone is authorized to make a delivery in the middle of the night and other circumstances that would require access after-hours.

For smaller businesses, the virtual guard can act as a second person when opening a store. This fulfills certain insurance or company policy obligations requiring sufficient staffing to start or end the business day – while still maintaining security all over the area. They can also monitor someone walking to their car at night, or a lone employee, in case they get hurt or their security is compromised.

On top of this, they can act as a virtual gate guard. Rather than needing a physical guard shack at your gate, with a physical guard attached only to that post, only a camera and the gate itself are needed. The virtual guard can monitor people and license plates easily using advanced camera technology.

Finally, and possibly most importantly, the cost. A typical physical guard costs about $12/hour on average, or about $105,000 each year for 24/7 monitoring. A virtual guard, on average, costs ¼ of that, despite being in multiple places at once.

While there are pros to having a person physically guarding your small business, a virtual guard in many cases have a faster response time as they can be in more than one place at a time – or quickly move across a site within seconds.

What’s Better: Virtual Guard or Real-Life Guard?

A combination of virtual security guards backed up by on-site security officers is the optimal solution. Your on-site security guards serve as “boots on the ground,” while your virtual guards act as “eyes in the sky.”

If you have limited resources and are able to choose only one option, we recommend virtual guard because:

  • They’re 100% reliable and you do not worry about sick days, vacations, and other staffing issues
  • They have greater visibility thanks to multiple camera views from their remote monitoring location
  • Virtual guards can be in more than one place at a time and respond quickly to potential security threats

All of this for a cheaper cost means the positive aspects of a virtual, off-site guard outweigh an on-site guard.

What do you want to do next?

Physical Vs Security Guards