Cloud surveillance is gaining momentum in the network video security market. Also referred to as video software as a service (VSaaS), cloud surveillance delivers a myriad of benefits to homes and businesses utilizing network video, including offsite storage, longer storage times, greater flexibility and convenience, and remote access from essentially anywhere in the world with Internet access.
Whether or not cloud surveillance will slowly push out the need for NVRs remains to be seen. As noted, the advantages are manifold; some would even argue that cloud surveillance dwarfs all other video storage methods. The key benefits of using VSaaS are delineated below.
Back-up Storage: There’s no worse nightmare than losing all of your data. NVRs and laptops are incredibly susceptible to theft and hard-disk failures. Using a cloud service assures that no matter what happens to your storage devices, your video will be safely stored on a remote server.
Long-term storage: Cloud surveillance applications can offer significantly longer video storage periods than onsite managing services such as NVRs and video management software. Knowing that video will be stored as long as needed brings tremendous comfort and relief to all types of enterprises. Furthermore, some high-security businesses require video to be stored for a certain number of days. These needs aren’t always met by NVRs or video management software.
Remote Access: The convenience factor of cloud surveillance obviously attracts a large crowd. Nothing is more convenient than simply logging onto a cloud surveillance platform while on vacation or away from your cameras. Reliable remote access is a primary selling point as it works on Smartphone devices, tablets, PCs, and Macs.
Flexibility and Scalability: Cloud surveillance enables multi-site monitoring from any location in the world. For example, a large corporation in the U.S. would be able to access, manage, and view video from one of its overseas locations. Cloud Surveillance also allows its users to add cameras as needed to their account.
The aforementioned benefits of cloud surveillance are undoubtedly the force behind the market’s rapid growth. Why then hasn’t cloud surveillance become the only means of managing and viewing video? Cloud surveillance presents a couple of problems that have yet to be solved. One of the major problems with cloud surveillance is bandwidth restrictions.
Storing video to a cloud surveillance service in a location with slow internet speed can be frustrating and difficult since it requires a tremendous amount of bandwidth. Thus, cloud surveillance may not be a favorable choice for homeowners who tend to have far less upstream bandwidth to store video than most businesses.
With an NVR at home or in a small office, you have full control and access to your surveillance video without needing high-speed internet. If you lose internet connection at the home or office, you won’t be able to view or store your video on a cloud service at all.
Skipping the NVR and choosing to operate your entire surveillance system online does pose security threats. Just as email accounts can be hacked, your cloud service account can likewise be jeopardized. These newly developed cloud service services are particularly vulnerable.
Cloud surveillance is a growing trend that should be carefully examined from all angles. When choosing your method of video storage it’s crucial to look at both the benefits and risks. Some businesses and homes may benefit more from a cloud surveillance service than others. In some applications, cloud surveillance is best used as a supplement to current video management and storage technologies.
About the Author: Ellen Arndt brings a wealth of experience in research, writing and outreach to her role as Communications Manager for VideoSurveillance.com. A University of Portland graduate, Arndt has an extensive background in communications, business and technology writing, project management, and market research. She currently provides businesses and homeowners with educational content and sources aimed to enhance their knowledge of IP surveillance technology and its long-term benefits.