Get Your Camera On: A Guide to Commercial Video Surveillance – Part 2

By David Strickland, Vice President of Kenton Brothers

You see it or read about it every day in the news:

“Information is Being Sought In Burglary Case of a Local Business”
“Local Business Broken Into, Alleged Thieves Caught On Camera”
“Local Mans Business Broken Into Through Hole In Wall”

Video SurveillanceIt happens so much these days that many times, we don’t even stop to read the details. For those of us that have been victims of theft, it changes the way you see the world. For a few of us, theft can deal a brutal blow to your business and cost you your livelihood.

Security and Video Surveillance are now necessities for businesses.

Businesses must protect their assets from theft and fraud. In our previous blog, we discussed the reasons why you must have video surveillance. If you would like to know why you need commercial video surveillance, I recommend you read it.

Since that blog published, we’ve received many questions on the specifics around security cameras for businesses or commercial video surveillance. In this blog, we’ll discuss some of those questions and give our recommendations or answers to these questions.

Do I really get any benefits from a Commercial Video Surveillance System?

Yes! If properly designed and installed by a professional integrator such as Kenton Brothers Inc. Your first benefit will be peace of mind. The video cameras and signage that Kenton Brothers Inc. provides would be an immediate deterrent for theft, vandalism and fraudulent claims. Even if the business does suffer from one of these incidents, you’ll have forensic evidence to help catch a perpetrator or act as a witness to a fraudulent claim.

Many businesses also see increased employee production as a benefit of installing commercial video surveillance. Some commercial insurance companies will even reduce rates on your insurance for installing a security and commercial surveillance system.

So, what’s the difference between CCTV and IP Video Surveillance?

Video Surveillance - ResolutionThe biggest difference between CCTV cameras and IP Cameras is the resolution. The very best CCTV (analog) cameras can only record up to 720 dpi (dots per inch). An IP camera can record more than 30 million dots per inch. Basically, the IP cameras are sharper and give you more detail in your recorded image. To clearly see and identify the subjects in the camera, you need to have as many pixels as possible.

Video Surveillance - ResolutionThe second largest difference between CCTV and IP Video Surveillance is the intelligence of the camera. IP Video Surveillance cameras are basically small computers with a lens. This allows the IP Video Surveillance cameras to do things such as report camera status and health, detect motion, count customers, detect smoke, detect temperature differences, record shopping heat maps, detect wrong way movement, detect gunshots and even detect when someone has left a package behind. Some IP Video Surveillance cameras even utilize artificial intelligence to learn from what it views. For example, detecting whether the motion it sees is an animal or a human. The animal is recorded and a human would trigger an alarm and then dispatch security or police.

IP Video Surveillance systems take power from and record over a network. These network recording devices can be housed anywhere, even off-site, including in the Cloud. CCTV systems record to a DVR that would be housed on-site and would be vulnerable. An IP Video surveillance system compresses the video recording allowing for longer recording time and stores the recorded image at its full 2-30 megapixel resolution. CCTV systems tend to record at 480 by 640 resolution.

Cost and Compatibility. It’s true that CCTV systems tend to be less expensive than IP Video Surveillance systems. However, the benefits of higher quality images, higher quality recordings and intelligent cameras far outweigh the differences in price. Additionally, IP Video Surveillance systems can be configured and integrated with your other business systems such as intrusion detection systems, point of sale machines, productivity programming and even time and attendance.

How many cameras do I need?

This question comes up a lot! It’s a great question… that’s not easy to answer without doing a complete site survey. For no charge, trained security consultants from Kenton Brothers Inc. will do a free site assessment and IP Video Surveillance design for any business that would like to add Commercial Video Surveillance.

Generally speaking, you want a camera at every entry and exit point of your business as well as one over any critical high value assets you may have. Additionally, you need a camera on any production or manufacturing areas and employee gathering spots. You will also want cameras in your common public areas. (This would be a good time to mention that you can’t put cameras in areas that a person would have a reasonable right to privacy such as a bathroom or nursing room.)

What role does cybersecurity have with my commercial video surveillance system?

The news is riddled with stories about how hackers have used vulnerabilities in “off the shelf” video surveillance systems to breach business data. This is a big problem and isn’t just a video surveillance issue. One of the largest data and credit card information hacks ever committed occurred through a heating and air conditioning module on a network that wasn’t managed correctly.

Professional installers, such as Kenton Brothers Inc. and the manufacturers we partner with, make specific recommendations and incorporate specific processes to manage vulnerabilities. Kenton Brothers Inc. will design the proper network structure, implement security configurations, update passwords (never leaving a default password in place) and install patches when released. These are part of a larger strategy we employ to keep your business data safe.

Here is one of the resources we use to “harden” your video Surveillance system (PDF). This PDF was created by one of our trusted partners Axis Communications.

Is there really a difference between the systems you install and one that I can buy at my local warehouse wholesale store?

YES. If you take nothing more from this blog, please remember this: There’s a huge difference in the quality, capabilities and cybersecurity between an off-the-shelf system and one professionally designed and installed by a certified integrator such as Kenton Brothers Inc.

Next month, in part 3 of this video surveillance series, we’ll discuss the types of cameras on the market and how you would use them!

RADAR for the Masses. Making your video surveillance more intelligent.

By Neal Bellamy, IT Director at Kenton Brothers

Today, I want to show you some new products from Axis Communications.

Axis Q6125-LE

The first is an Axis Q6125-LE. It’s a new PTZ (Point-Tilt-Zoom) that has built-in IR. This is a first for Axis. IP Cameras have had IR illuminators for a while, but the challenge with a PTZ is using enough IR illumination to reach the target when it’s far away and not blasting the target with IR illumination when it’s very close.  You can see in this video how the man’s face is overexposed when he gets close to the camera. (Note that this is an example of overexposure, not how the Axis camera performs.)

Axis overcomes this challenge, by using multiple IR illuminators inside the Q6125-LE. Each IR illuminator is faded in or out based on the zoom level of the lens. This feature is in addition to the other standard features in Axis Q series PTZ cameras like auto tracking and speed dome technology and Axis is including analytics like Fence Guard and Loitering guard.

We’ll see some of those technologies in upcoming blogs. This PTZ camera fits nicely into Axis’s line up.

Axis D2050-VE

The next product we’re excited about is Axis’s new D2050-VE. This is a totally new technology for Axis.

Axis Radar CamerasIt’s a radar paired with a PTZ. The radar can detect people and vehicles in a 120-degree arc for a little over 160 feet. It can still be connected to your video management software, but the image shows all the things that the radar is tracking, instead of an image of the tracked item. The radar does not need light and can “see” through fog and other conditions that would normally prevent camera footage.

With a PTZ the radar becomes even more useful. It will tell the PTZ the location of the object or objects, so the PTZ can keep them in view. Although many Axis PTZs have auto-tracking, they will not see other items that appear when auto-tracking is engaged. The radar always has a 120-degree field of view and will tell the PTZ about the other objects in the area.

Axis is rapidly expanding on the firmware of the D2050-VE, recently they have added an accuracy rating, which tells you how sure the object is a car or person, and speed filters to alert when a car is moving too fast. The application for the Axis D2050-VE is in private areas where advanced detection is required. Coupling the radar with a PTZ adds identification to the detection that the radar already gives.

We’re excited about the possibilities that the Axis Q6125-LE and D2050-VE bring to our customers!

Creating Security Peace of Mind for Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center

By Gina Stuelke, CEO of Kenton Brothers

Samuel U. Rodgers Health CenterIn 1967, Dr. Samuel U. Rodgers opened the first federally-recognized community health center in Missouri — just the fourth such center in the country at that time.

Dr. Rodgers believed families deserve access to everything they need to thrive. That’s why he chose to open his health center at the Wayne Miner Housing Project, so families got the care they needed right in their neighborhood. In 1988, the Wayne Miner Health Center was renamed in honor of its founder and Executive Director: the Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center.

Dr. Rodgers dedicated his life to providing quality, compassionate and affordable health care to Kansas City.

Like Dr. Rodgers, Kenton Brothers Systems for Security has a long lived passion… ours is for creating security peace of mind. KB partnered with the Health Center as their security integrator of choice to upgrade and expand their access control and video surveillance systems. KB has been securing people, property and possessions for over a hundred years.

S2 access control and Milestone video management systems were utilized to increase peace of mind through effective administrative control and reporting. Kenton Brothers worked with the IT and Security teams to redesign and improve the capabilities and effectiveness of their systems. The end result was meeting the current needs at their main campus.

Kenton Brother commends the associates at Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center as they build healthier families, enrich neighborhoods and strengthen the community via their five locations in the KC metro, serving more than 25,000 patients.


Kenton Brothers and AXIS Communications team up to Root on the Royals and check out new technology!

By David Strickland, Vice President of Kenton Brothers

Kenton Brothers and AXIS Communications at Royals!We love our boys in blue in Kansas City! The Kansas City Royals have reached new heights in recent years and won the World Series in 2015. They inspire greatness and have served as an example for Kenton Brothers and other champions like Axis Communications to set the bar high and work hard to accomplish great things. Kenton Brothers was honored to attend the Axis Communications event at the K this summer to see them show off their newest technology and see some great baseball. Kenton Brothers is a Gold Partner with Axis and loves to take any opportunity it can to develop that relationship.

The New AXIS Q1659 Network Camera

Axis sets new standards for image quality in video surveillance, combining Canon professional photographic imaging technologies with proven performance and integration benefits. Axis raises the bar on image quality for a security camera with the introduction of AXIS Q1659 Network Camera. It combines a high-performance image sensor and Canon EF/EF-S lenses with the full range of Axis flexibility, ease-of-use and efficiency features to provide exceptional image quality in extreme detail for a range of surveillance needs. It is an ideal offering for detailed surveillance over long distances for cities, airports, transportation, stadiums and other open areas.

Kenton Brothers and AXIS Communications at Royals! Kenton Brothers and AXIS Communications at Royals!

“This camera is truly a best of both worlds approach: The world-class image quality Canon is known for with its professional-level photography technology and Axis’ market-leading security systems that deliver everything required for a complete, flexible and easy-to-manage installation. In addition to the extreme level of quality and detail, AXIS Q1659 (thanks to its broad VMS support) can be quickly integrated with existing security environments,” says Olof Leidecker, Global Product Manager at Axis.

The level of detail…

AXIS Q1659 delivers 20MP resolution at 8 frames per second (fps), achieving unprecedented levels of detail for observing open spaces and across long distances. It features digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) imaging technology and offers a choice of 7 different EF/EF-S lenses depending on individual user needs. Equipped with an EF lens mount, the camera enables easy lens changes.

The new camera also offers the latest enhancement of Axis’ Zipstream technology, which offers even more storage and bandwidth savings in video surveillance applications without compromising on important image details. In addition, an SFP slot for optional fiber connectivity gives the ability to connect to the network over long distances.

Kenton Brothers and AXIS Communications at Royals!

Kenton Brothers and AXIS Communications at Royals! Kenton Brothers and AXIS Communications at Royals!

As seen at beautiful Kauffman Stadium “The K”, the Axis Q1659 equipped with the Cannon 70-200mm telephoto lens can capture exceptional detail at well over 400 feet away. In the video clip you can read three-inch letters on a restaurant sign at 425 feet away, through a guard rail. Even the name of the restaurant, despite the sign being covered by poor lighting, is legible. When the Axis Q1659 is equipped with a number of available lenses, it is able to support Axis Lightfinder technology, for enhanced low light performance.

Kenton Brothers can help you explore the Axis Communications camera line and design the right plan to meet your needs. Give us a call today!

Kenton Brothers and AXIS Communications at Royals!

Boxwood Bandits Busted

Video Surveillance Cameras Catch Thieves with Green Thumbs Red-Handed

Kenton Brothers is in the final stages of renovating our new facility in the Truman Corridor. One of the reasons we chose this particular building is that it’s ten times larger than our old facility and better to showcase our cutting-edge security technologies. Ironically, our surveillance camera installation team had not yet gotten around to installing cameras on our building’s exterior. We were the cobbler whose children have no shoes.

Instead, we were focusing on the landscape, which takes a lot of hard work. The grounds were cleaned up and leveled. There was weed mat rolled out. Big holes were dug in which to plant various bushes, shrubs and trees. Finally, we were ready for the finishing touch – decorative rock, which was scheduled for delivery the next day.

Overnight, the boxwood bandits struck.

Kenton Brothers: Boxwood BanditsOne of our new boxwood shrubs had been yanked right out of its lovingly and painstakingly-dug hole!

There’s an old saying that goes something along the lines of, “There are two types of people in this world. Those who own security cameras and systems and those who’ve never been burglarized.” The Boxwood Bandits shook us out of our renovation mindset and got our surveillance team in gear. What if these green-thumbed thieves returned to help themselves to more of our shrubs?

Our security installation team worked well into the night to install commercial surveillance cameras on our building to watch over the plants (and the rest of the grounds).

Early the next morning, (2:24 a.m.) a couple walked up to our building with a construction cart and began digging up and carting away our new shrubs. How do we know? We watched the video footage. The shrubs couldn’t be far away, so a few of our employees canvassed the neighborhood and located our missing boxwoods.

Kansas City Police Department officers also watched the video on one of employee’s phones, and we showed them the house where our kidnapped shrubs were being held. Police questioned a woman who came out of the house wearing the exact same shirt she was wearing in the surveillance video. She said, “That’s not me.” Police asked, “Would you like to press charges?” We said, “Yes. Yes we would.”

Thanks to commercial-grade surveillance, these Boxwood Bandits were busted. With the Kansas City Police Department’s help, we were able to retrieve our shrubs and re-plant them.

Kenton Brothers: Boxwood Bandits Kenton Brothers: Boxwood Bandits