Posts Tagged ‘ Big Brother ’

Security Cameras – An invasion of privacy or necessary evil?

Written By:
Friday, May 1st, 2015

It was 1984 and Rockwell must have seen the future when he flooded the airwaves with his hit “Somebody’s Watching Me”. The paranoid pop rant was catapulted to the top of the charts with Michael Jackson adding his distinct voice to the chorus of a song that spoke of “The Twilight Zone” and “Psycho” as the writer asked “can the people on TV see me or am I just paranoid”.


Fast forward 30 years and Somebody Is Watching You! From satellites hovering high above to cameras intruding on almost every aspect of your daily life, you might consider them nothing more than an invasion of your privacy. You question big-brother (AKA The Government) reaching beyond the limits of legal and ethical standards. So, is the proliferation of cameras in our day to day lives a bad thing?

Before you make a decision in respect to the good and bad of it, a little history lesson might be helpful. A glimpse back to what may very well be the first known “security camera” ever used shows that in 1933, a Mr. Norbury in London, England was disturbed to find eggs and chickens missing from his coops. He set up a simple box camera with cords that were connected to the door and the lever on the camera that would cause an image to be captured when the door was opened! To make it even more effective, he fixed a second cord to the door and when it was opened; it made a piece of metal rattle against the tin tub that the eggs were kept in. This caused the intruder to look toward the sound giving the victim a perfect profile of him. Within a matter of days, Frederick William Barnwell struck again and his image was captured, subsequently resulting in a guilty plea and kudos from the judge. Pure genius!


Think about a security video as a compilation of a bunch of images like the single image of the egg thief. Images have been proving, disproving and leaving us wanting more for over a century. Today, hidden and not so hidden cameras are everywhere. They’re in offices, retail locations, the drive-thru, schools, EVERY Government building, main streets, side streets and even in your home. Maybe you’ve seen red-light cameras that are triggered by a sensor located under the white stop line and before the entrance of the intersection. This sensor becomes active when the traffic light turns red.  NOT yellow, but completely red. There are spy planes, Google-maps, private satellites and the biggest user of security cameras, the Department of Homeland Security!

So, we know that the original intentions were good, but how have security cameras evolved to our present day? What has it come to? Reflections of George Orwell’s 1984 ring true to some in this passage, “There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment. How often, or on what system, the Thought Police plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork. It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate, they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to. You had to live—did live, from habit that became instinct—in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized.”


Since 9/11, things have changed and many people feel inconvenienced and intruded upon. I think you need to weigh what you have truly given up and how you have been adversely affected. Is it worth one life, or ten, or one-hundred lives that you have to take your shoes off at the airport?  Are you upset because there’s a camera on that downtown street you’re walking down? I’ll bet the college student who was raped by the guy that followed her after she left a restaurant by herself is happy there were cameras that helped identify the rapist! Ray Rice probably wishes he never stepped foot into that elevator with a camera in it but, think about how much conversation and attention was brought to the subject of domestic abuse! Consider the images of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Tamerlan Tsarnaev that were captured and tied them to the Boston Marathon bombing and then discuss personal privacy versus public security!

My take on it is this . . . if you’re not doing anything wrong, you shouldn’t be concerned. Until someone shows me definitive proof that Big Brother is watching me doing every day, mundane things, I’m not going to get worked up about that camera in the retail store or the one that sees me walking down that downtown street or driving  down the highway. I will, however, be glad when the cameras at my house keep out that criminal that needs a fix, or feels entitled to what I’ve worked for. If I’m ever in Boca Raton shopping at Town Center and my car is broken into, I’d like to know that they have security cameras that may have caught a glimpse of the &$@(*$ or their license plate. Last but not least, I’ll be glad to know that there are cameras on campus when my daughters go off to college! Face it, it’s not a perfect world and I’d rather be a little inconvenienced and know that while I’m being watched . . . so is the bad guy!


If you’re still scared and angry because you feel violated, I’ll tell you not to be. As a matter of fact, I suggest you peruse our website at or call us at 1-866-573-8878 and see what we can do to help you feel more secure in your home or business.  And by the way . . . to answer the question “can the people on TV see me or am I just paranoid”. For those of you who have cameras built into your television or laptop, the answer is yes! That’s because the browser on your computer or web enabled TV can be hacked thereby allowing someone to take control of the camera at any time possibly catching you when you least expect it! This doesn’t mean that you should be afraid of cameras and technology. It only means that you need to learn how to protect yourself from unwanted intrusion by making sure that your personal network is protected sufficiently. You know; if your name is Barbara and you were born in 1971, don’t make your network password Barbara71.

Maybe next month we’ll delve into securing your network! Until then . . . act right when you’re in public because chances are . . . you are being watched!


The Importance of a Security Camera System in the Workplace

Written By:
Thursday, September 4th, 2014

warehouse security camera

In the technological world that we are living in employers are finding it more beneficial to install a security camera system in the work place. Having a security camera system is the most foolproof way to ensure that your business will thrive in a world full of human error and dishonesty. A few advantages are efficient time management, loss prevention, improved employee performance, and a great way to discover and improve on employee mistakes. The following article will explain that the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages to having a modern security camera monitoring system in any work environment that wishes to grow in an ever changing world.

To start is the overwhelming prevention of theft and product loss when a highly efficient security camera system is implemented in the work place. The most basic explanation to this phenomenon is that when a human being knows he or she is being watched they tend to do the right thing and act like a good employee should act. When the employee realizes that his or her actions are being watched by the “eye in the sky” then he or she will know that their actions will have immediate reactions if a crime was committed. If a product is stolen or missing then there will always be a way of back tracking and finding out if someone has ether made a mistake or stolen from the inventory and thus causing the company to lose valuable time and money. In this competitive working world we live in there is no room for employees who think its OK to skim a little off the top. Also, there are many customers that will try to take advantage of a business or company and decide to steal valuable things from them, but as long as big brother is watching these crimes can be prevented and stopped. Surveillance systems can also help during a robbery by providing evidence of who the shooter was and how the owner or law enforcement protected themselves. My belief is that stealing is wrong and if it can be prevented then we should take every action necessary to ensure that it doesn’t happen and time and time again it has been proven that you can’t fool the eye in the sky.

Studies have shown that surveillance in any work environment can significantly improve your employees’ work ethic and time management. You would be hard pressed to find any thriving business that lets their employees play on their phone and mess around on Facebook all day and ever get any work done. So of course there are rules that are implemented in the work environment. But how does an employer make sure that these rules are kept so that the work place can be productive and move towards a common goal. Well the answer is installing a security camera system. The boss can’t always be watching his employees to make sure that they are working and not goofing off. But with the security camera system the employee will always have a sense that the boss could be watching, so it is natural to want to work hard and make the boss proud. The benefits are over-whelming when it comes to work place productivity and efficiency.

Unfortunately human beings were created fallible and are very prone to making mistakes. Human error is the leading cause to any mistakes that are made in any work environment. For example, when a product gets labeled wrong in a warehouse and the customer gets the wrong thing, then you can simply go through the recorded film and find the mistake. If the problem happens more than once with the same employee then maybe it might be time to find more reliable help and let the mistake-maker go. If the company didn’t have any security camera systems installed then there would be no way of knowing who is making the mistakes and therefore no way of fixing such an easily fixable problem. There is always the feeling of being watched that will always make an employee want to do his or her job correctly. A security camera system will ensure that your employees are working hard and doing the job right. The cameras will also be a foolproof way of knowing if the customer is lying about the product they are getting. For example, say a customer receives an expensive piece of merchandise and then calls the company complaining that they didn’t get any product. Well if you have cameras facing your cargo area then the proof will be right there in black and white. Case closed.

It is very important to make your employees and customers feel safe at all times. Violence in the workplace has become an increasing problem. A security camera system can help employees feel safer and always prevent violence in the working environment. Your employees and customers will shop and work with ease especially if there is a security guard watching and monitoring the cameras at all times. God forbid an incident doesn’t happen, but if it does you will be able to pull the tape and ensure that whomever is responsible be held accountable. There is also the possibility that you need the incident recorded for legal reasons or for court. Bottom line is that it wouldn’t be a he said or she said incident. You will have hard evidence and concrete proof of what happened really happened.

Lastly there is the argument that it is too expensive to install a security camera system in the workplace. I know that if I was running a highly profitable business then I would want to protect my assets and protect myself legally before I worried about spending a few extra bucks. I believe it is better to be safe than sorry. In conclusion, I think it is more than just a good idea to consider installing a security camera system in any workplace that wishes to continue to profit and grow.


Big Brother is Watching You!

Written By:
Friday, June 20th, 2014
Big brother is watching

Have you ever had that feeling that someone’s is watching you? Chances are, you’re right!  If you often spend time in any major city, government building, bank, shopping center, airport, train station, port, and gas station (amongst almost any other facility that is open to the public) you are more than likely being recorded on some sort of surveillance system.  Now, whether or not someone is on the other end endlessly watching the cameras or not you may never know.  When people often think of security cameras they commonly refer to being watched by big brother!  Often times it is just hard working business owners trying to protect their investments from the scum of this world, other times it will be security professionals watching for the “suspicious” activity.  Most systems are generally used to record the information and it is only retrieved when an event occurs or there is a dispute of some sort. Now when you go to a big sporting event, or other large gathering, the police will often times use these systems to scan the crowd to look for dangerous people, especially in the wake with the Boston Marathon bombings. These systems are being harnessed for the protection of all citizens and to ensure no more copycat attempts.

I often hear from people that, “I don’t understand why my company put in security cameras!  What, don’t they trust me?” Commonly, it’s not the lack of trust of specific individuals; it is that they want to know what is going on and make sure that the scum don’t try and falsely bring allegations or lawsuits against them.  Erroneous lawsuits hurt everyone in society. The cost of goods have gone up tremendously with all the bogus slip and fall lawsuits that occur in supermarkets and other retail stores. Since the implementation of higher quality security cameras these lawsuits have been slowly diminishing. You have to remember that there are people in this society that will try and get away with things if no one is there to watch them.  Trust me when I first started working here it was a little weird being video and sound recorded!  After a few days it went away, and I started thinking about it and realized that if I am not doing anything wrong why does it matter if I am being watched!

When it comes to security cameras, their purpose is generally used for good! I know that I always feel safer knowing that there are cameras around. I think the main reason is that I know if something is to happen, at least there is a recording of the event/s that occurred to help me prove my case. For ninety percent, give or take a few percent, of people will do the right thing when being watched. Now if you take away the cameras that percentage would drop drastically, I feel this has a lot to do with the fact that people are generally risk takers. If there is a chance to get away with something people are more likely to take that risk! I’m not implying that people are inherently bad, I am expressing that the devil in people are more likely to come out when they feel they can get away with the crime. You should really not fear the fact that security cameras are in use across the country. Your concerns should be more focused on what are government agencies are doing that you don’t even have a clue about! At least a camera system leaves some evidence in case a crime does occur.


If you want to fear something, you should fear what the NSA (National Security Agency) does on a daily basis that you and I may never know about unless defectors continue to spill their secrets. One such program that was revealed in the past month is known as PRISM. From what is known, this program allows for authorized analysts of the NSA to pull detailed information from consumers of Microsoft, Apple, Google, Yahoo, and other firms. Under the shield of the government, this program allows for the extraction of e-mails, photos, documents, chats, as well as other information without any search warrants or court rulings.

Another program that just had information released about it is the NSA’s XKEYSCORE program. From what I can tell this is a series of Linux clusters that have been massively distributed around the world, which is completely scalable to meet the needs of the NSA. It seems that these clusters collect data from almost all Internet traffic and store it in a database for later use by the NSA. They can query the information to learn a lot of information about anything they want really.

A Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (Fisa) granted the FBI unlimited authority for three months to indiscriminately collect all phone call data on every Verizon customer at home or abroad. This information is being put into a database for use when trying to determine potential terrorist threats. It is a little unnerving that it is a blanket collection, but the way I look at it is that I am not doing anything wrong so it isn’t affecting me directly.

I am not defending what the NSA or other agencies are doing as right or wrong! I just want you to be aware that I would fear them more than I would fear a camera system recording me. Unfortunately in the day and age that we currently live in, we need to become accustom to being recorded in all aspects of our lives. We live in a digital world with lots of digital footprints that we all leave on a daily basis. Sometimes these footprints are more incriminating than any video evidence will be. This is generally because people feel that what they do on the Internet in the comfort of their own home isn’t being monitored. If more people just understood that no matter what you do in this world, you are being watched and monitored. So treat everything you do as if you are not alone, more people would do the right things and not be so tempted by the bad things.