When you are looking at professional security options, you can find different means for different goals. The first question you will be asked is what do you want to protect? Family homes, small business storefronts, warehouses, industrial facilities, or car lots? No matter your answer, there is one thing that they all share: they are all popular targets for seasoned criminals. Let’s see how they can all be protected.
Listed below are the best-known security options as compared to Swissguard’s live remote video monitoring. The list does not cover all available solutions. Remember: the more unique your system is, the more protected you are!
No alarm system – inefficient
Local alarm system – inefficient
Remotely monitored alarm system with CCTV – partly efficient
On-site guarding (human guarding) – too expensive compared to service level
Preventive / proactive camera monitoring by Swissguard – optimal solution
1 – No alarm system
As a very first, fundamental, and cheap security solution, one may equip their property with physical protection: padlocks, additional locks, enforced windows and so on.
It is obvious that there is a bolt cutter for every padlock. If someone wants to break in, they will.
PRO: Zero cost.
CON: Zero protection.
2 – Local alarm system
The next low-cost option is an alarm system that is not connected to a Security Operation Center (SOC). It blows a siren on-site, and/or notifies the owner via phone (text msg). A local alarm has no retentiveness: everyone knows that 99% of alarms are false alarms. Traditionally they do not react —just think of the reaction to fire alarms at your place of work.
PRO: Low one-time cost. No recurring fees.
CON: No actual protection. Seasoned criminals do not bother at all.
3 – Remotely monitored alarm system with CCTV
In this case, the alarm system (in better cases together with the camera feed) is connected to a SOC. This gives you a false sense of security. Here is the truth:
Cameras are powered down when the system is unarmed.
When armed, the video stream is sent to the SOC, where overloaded colleagues have a huge amount of feeds to watch. Chances are low that they (or the applied AI) can actually spot a suspicious event. Without an alarm signal, there is minimal attention given to a feed.
When the armed alarm system goes off (by detecting a breach), the SOC does pay attention. But by this time criminals have already intruded on your home or other premise. SOC sends the reaction team but it is already too late.
Learn more on this topic in this article: False sense of security: alarm monitoring
PRO: Relatively low one-time and recurring costs. “I have done what I could” feeling.
CON: Reactive only: takes action AFTER your premises are breached.
4 – On-site guarding by security personnel
This is the most expensive solution, with the most misbeliefs!
On-site manned guarding security will continue to increase in cost in the near future, for multiple reasons (economical, HR, employment law, etc). Read about this here: The future of traditional on-site guarding.
Besides cost, on-site guarding is not as effective as you might think. There are a lot of human factors: blind spots while on security patrol, fatigue, being tricked or even bribed(!) by criminals, failure to pass a drug test, and call-offs, among other issues.
At the low end of the price range, security staff is simply not trained enough. These guards seldom have a professional appearance, and they react unpredictably in stressful situations.
Read more about this, and compare on-site guarding to our solution: On-site guarding vs proactive security.
On-site guarding (human guarding) is usually priced between £8 – £15,000 per month for a single guard! (£8-15 per hour for one 24/7 shift) Please note that one position requires at least 3 people + administration + a security office or room. Technical and personal equipment are needed.
PRO: Live guarding, on-site security patrol and 24/7 security. Seemingly the most secure.
CON: Very high one-time and recurring fees. Personal issues, HR costs, and questionable quality!
5 – Proactive camera monitoring by Swissguard
To our knowledge and our best intentions, this is the most efficient security option on the market today. The service is the best of both worlds; the combination of manned guarding security and live video monitoring.
PRO: Proactive and preventive effect. Better and cheaper than on-site guarding.
CON: Slightly more expensive than the otherwise inefficient SOC method.
There is no need for a classic alarm system. (Installation fee, equipment costs).
Our installer partners assess your facility and find the optimal camera placement to avoid blind spots.
Minimum camera installation is 1 (one), for example in the case of family home entry protection. (See case study on forced entry protection here).
How does it work?
The system is not “armed” or “unarmed”, it is live 24/7. (In case of family homes, this raises privacy issues – this is considered when planning camera placement).
The camera system sends the video feed to our headquarters, also called the Watch Center.
In the Watch Center, there are well-trained Watch Officers working. They watch a maximum of 60 feeds at the same time and work no longer than 45 mins at a time to avoid tiredness and fatigue. They can have no distractions: there is only one person in the operator room, and mobile phones and other devices are not allowed. Only a glass of water is on the desk.
Cam stream is constantly watched, not only at trigger events (breach, etc). This means action can be taken before the criminal activity could take place.
When a suspicious event is observed (someone lurking around, a suspicious car parked, something is to cause fire, etc.) the issue is escalated to the Watch Supervisors. They investigate the case within a few seconds, by bringing additional cameras live if necessary.
Local law enforcement (or fire department) is alerted and they take action within the shortest possible time.
The price of the camera installation depends on the unique parameters of the facility to be protected.
Proactive Swissguard 24/7 live monitoring is priced on a per camera basis:
£ 395 / cam / month, which is equal to:
£ 0.7 / cam / hour
Example 1: family home with one entry gate camera to avoid forced entry: £ 395/mo
Example 2: workshop, warehouse and car fleet protected by 20 cameras: Price dependent upon solution.
Security assessment of your unique property
Contact our team NOW to assess how many cameras would be needed in your case.