Alternative Uses for Surveillance Cameras

giraffe camAfter a long, anticipated wait, April, the pregnant giraffe at the Animal Adventure Park in New York, finally gave birth to her calf this past weekend. The birth was a highly anticipated event, since millions of people had been monitoring April via live stream for well over a month. The event also demonstrated a use for surveillance cameras not centered on security: giving observers an inconspicuous view of the animal world. In fact, multiple zoos and wildlife refuges now use cameras to observe the behavior and actions of their animals to provide better care. But residential consumers and other industries are also finding new and alternative uses for surveillance cameras outside basic security:

Privacy and Security Issues with the IoT

The Internet of Things is growing every day and opening up exciting possibilities for consumers. Among some of the more recent innovations: a leak detector which helps you avoid water damage, a sensor for your garden which alerts consumers to the need for water or fertilizer, the television that doubles as a controller for your home automation devices, etc. But the more connected we become, the more possibilities there are for privacy and security issues with the Internet of Things.

Why Are Virus Protection and Offsite Backups So Vital?

by Josh Tafoya, Technical Trainer

Computer viruses are a real drag.

Seeing as how you’re all reading this on the Internet, I’m going to assume that I don’t need to do the remedial explanation of computer viruses. We learned about them years ago. Anyone who feels they need to understand the concept a bit more, feel free to check out the Wikipedia entry or your favorite search engine to learn more.

In my 19 years as an I.T. professional, and in the dozen years before that as a nerdy (before it was cool) young person, I’ve been lucky to have only been affected once by a computer virus.

(Hang on, I need to knock on wood here.)

The Value of a Home-Contents Inventory

by guest blogger Security Central /

If your home is struck by a burglar or a fire, an up-to-date home inventory will make it easier to deal with police and your insurance company. Without an up-to-date inventory, you’ll have to create a list of all your property from memory.

Creating and updating a home inventory isn’t nearly the time-consuming task it used to be. Creating an inventory and keeping it current prepares you for possible losses – and, it can also help you prevent losses from happening. As you inventory your possessions, you’ll become more aware of their vulnerability. Then you can take steps to make them more secure.

Ten Tips for Safe Holiday Decorating

The holidays are a time of festivities and fun, and many people like to “deck the halls” of their homes to celebrate. With a few precautions, you can enjoy those holiday decorations safely!

1) Holiday lights can suffer in storage all year. Check your light strings for frayed or cracked cords, loose connections, or broken sockets. If you need to change a bulb, unplug the lights first.

2) Light strings are intended to be strung together, but a good rule of thumb is to connect no more than three strands at any time.

Active Shooter Response Protocol

Ohio State University Emergency Management sent out the tweet at approximately 10am ET on Monday morning:

Around that time, a text alert with the same message appeared on student phones. Around the 2000-acre campus, students and faculty did just that: sheltering in place and barricading classrooms with whatever materials were available, as seen in this image from a student which circulated through news outlets:

Helpful Tips for Thanksgiving

Are you ready for Thanksgiving tomorrow? Whether you are cooking the meal, being the guest, doing the traveling, or just celebrating with the pets, here are some tips for an enjoyable and safe holiday!

For the host:
There are plenty of resources for cooking a delicious meal, but the American Safety Council offers some great tips through their clever acronym:

Keeping Cloud-Based Video Surveillance Footage Secure

by guest blogger Beth K.


Video surveillance is one of the most valuable tools in any security system, but until recently, storage costs and other limitations made it less than practical for many applications. That’s changed with the migration toward cloud-based storage, which has rapidly become a popular solution for both home and small business video surveillance systems. Cloud storage eliminates the cost and hassle of the various local storage options, provides greater convenience, and allows for a more versatile feature set. However, it also raises valid concerns over security and access control.

Seven Tips to Protect Your Home from Burglary

According to the FBI, home burglaries are the number one threat to U.S. homeowners; in fact, approximately four homes are burglarized every minute! When it comes to protecting your home and family, you probably know the basics – keep your doors and windows locked, leave lights on when you go out so your home looks occupied, use motion-sensor lights for your yard, and of course, install a home security system. But here are seven, lesser-known tips to keep your house from attracting burglars: