Object protection and CCTV (in museums)

CCTV in museums is now a teenager. And just like one, she feels she is misunderstood: Crimewatch programmes showing CCTV footage that is not clear enough to identify the victim. Movement activated systems pick up every spider and bat ready for you to analyse the next morning... And yet CCTV is a powerful tool in the fight against crime and specifically in protecting museum exhibits on display.

 

There are 3 benefits to internal CCTV in a museum environment.

 

Firstly as a deterrent, if that is all that is desired then dummy cameras can be considered.

 

Secondly (after the event) to help the police identify a thief or offender after they have left the premises. Good picture resolution,well positioned cameras e.g. on the front desk, plus good tape or digital record management are important.

Thirdly CCTV can be used at the scene and time of crime (if the cameras are watched in real time). Link it with rfid sensors. But I immediately hear: "We need a security control room for that and that's unaffordable". I reply but oh no it isn't...read on..

 

Of course the largest museums and galleries do have security control rooms with banks of CCTV screens and rightly so they house some of the worlds most precious heritage. Recent innovations enable the linking of object (e.g. painting) protection systems like GalleryMaster or GalleryMonitor to trigger camera presets. So if an object is touched an alarm goes off in the guard-room, the camera pans / tilts / zooms and up comes the scene on screen plus in the corners are the camera shots looking at each exit from that gallery. The guard on duty can then radio through appropriate instructions to the invigilators walking the halls depending on the cause, child, drunk or criminal all require different responses. 

But back to those of you who say: "This is unaffordable". The advent of broadband means that CCTV pictures can be monitored remotely by a station hundreds of miles away if appropriate.

 

Envisage a system where the object protection system alerts the monitoring station immediately and triggers the camera presets. They can see the exhibit and the exits just as well as any local control room. Link the object protection with a pager or radios so the object name flashes up and local invigilators can be on their way as the monitoring station radios through details of what they can see.

 

I agree not as good as your own control room but not half as expensive. ....

 

 

Art and object protection and information on CCTV monitoring is available from Euronova, just ask.....



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