Internet Protocol Video management is an important aspect of surveillance, these days.  This type of surveillance system uses digital cameras to monitor an area, sending data to and saving data on a network, allowing for access later.  While the technology has really become very popular over the past few years, the earliest forms of this technology date back as far as 1996.


Early Surveillance Cameras

The first IP cameras were built to monitor an area, with user access over the internet. The camera was not able to stream real-time video, but could take snapshots as instructed by the user.  Obviously, then, these quickly became archaic as technology improved to provide better video resolution and networked storage capabilities.

Potential Benefits to IPVM

IP cameras are different from older generations of video surveillance equipment primarily because IP cameras are digital whereas older iterations (mainly CCTV) were analog. Of course, analog cameras take simple snapshots and store the images locally. Video cameras can take higher quality pictures and then save the data to a local network. The images are delivered with transmission and security features via TCP/IP protocol.

All that in mind, IPVM has the following potential advantages:

  • 2-way audio through a single network cable, which allows users to communicate (back and forth) to the subject of the video
  • Use wi-fi (wireless network fidelity)
  • Distributed Artificial Intelligence (DAI)—video analytics placed within the camera itself (instead of a remote system), which allows for the camera to analyze native images
  • Improved data transmission security via encryption and authentication methods, including WPA and WPA2 as well as AES and TKIP
  • Remote accessibility, which allows for viewing of live video from any remote device (with specific access privileges)
  • Power over Ethernet (PoE0) capabilities, which supply power through an Ethernet cable for operation without a committed power supply

Potential Concerns Over IPM

Of course, no matter how beneficial any technology might be, there will also always be some concerns. That in mind, IPVM has the following potential disadvantages or concerns:

  • Infringement on privacy and portrait rights
  • Higher cost per camera, on average
  • Potential for security compromise if you maintain insecure credentials, especially when you note that these cameras can be accessed remotely and independent of a dedicated video recorder
  • With public internet connection, setup of the video content can be complicated; and also, might require Dynamic DNS or Static IP Address (though some cameras might include built in Dynamic DNS or use P2Pnetworking).