If you are considering getting security cameras (CCTV) or an alarm system installed in your home or business, you really need to ensure that you get a licenced installer to do the installation for you. There are a number of reasons why, and it's important to understand these.
Let's start by discussing what is a security installers licence?
In Queensland, Security is a regulated industry, which is overseen by the Office of Fair Trading. The regulations exist to ensure that only professionals with the right skills, qualifications and attributes are working in the industry to ensure that the relevant laws, regulations and codes of conduct are adhered to.
There are different classifications for security providers, but the one we are talking about here, is the technical licence. This is a classifications of security licencing that authorises a technical person to advise, install, service and manage security systems. Jump over to the Office of Fair Trading site for more details on the licencing requirements in Queensland.
So why is using a licenced installer so important?
Firstly, in Queensland, it is an offence to pay someone to install your CCTV cameras if they do not hold a current security installers licence. True story... You can even get fined under the Security Providers Act 1993 by engaging an unlicenced person to carry out the functions of a security provider. Check out this article on the Qld Police website for details and advice about engaging a security installer.
Seems serious??? It is.
Licenced security providers/installers must meet minimum requirements to obtain their licence. Not the lease of which is a full criminal history check (that is checked every time the licence is renewed). Now whilst you want to know that your installer has the right training, skills and knowledge to effectively install and maintain your system - ABSOLUTELY! You REALLY want to know that they aren't a criminal. You are trusting this person/people with the safety and security of your home or business - you MUST be able to trust them. They will have access to usernames and passwords, remote access to your system, information making your system both accessible and hackable if put in the wrong hands. NOT COOL.
I for one, would want to know that the installer/s working on my security system have been vetted, checked regularly and are skilled, trained and knowledgable.
Not only should you be looking for a licenced installer, you should be looking for an installer who is a member of a security industry body such as ASIAL. These governing bodies keep Australia's security installers accountable. Their role is to train, educate and monitor the security industry providers and ensure that they are meeting their minimum obligations to the relevant legislations and codes of practice. They are resposible for auditing the providers and making sure that they are adhering to all the industry regulations. You can use their website to search for registered, licenced security providers.
Licenced installers must adhere to a code of conduct and here's why that matters. The code of conduct outlines minimum professional and ethical standards to ensure that providers comply with the relevant legislation. Things like privacy and the relevant legislation that exists to protect an idividuals privacy. A non-licenced installer may not offer the right advice about pointing your new CCTV camera into the neighbours backyard and getting clear video of their kids swimming in the pool???
You are putting yourself at risk by hiring a non-licenced installer to do your security work.
Now if all of that is not enough evidence to suggest that you MUST use a licenced installer, here's the topper. Without the correct advice and the licenced installation, 2 things may happen that will make your security installation a waste of time and money. 1. Your insurance may not cover you for loss or damage resulting from unlawful or unlicenced security installation. 2. Your CCTV footage may not be permissable in court if the footage has been taken from unlicenced or unlawful security installations.
Of course, you have every right to install your own DIY security products (so long as you don't pay an unlicenced person to install it for you). But you should do this with caution. The regulations and laws surrounding surveilance still impact you and if you're not meeting the minimum requirements yourself, your footage may not be legal or permissable in court. In fact some breaches of these acts may result in fines or prosecution yourself (for example if you breach the privacy act).
I hope that this information helps to clarify the need for licencing and hiring a licenced installer.
AV Made Easy are a licenced security provider Lic. 3892193 and ASIAL member No. 64996
Did you know that you can visit the Queensland Police Services - Online Crime Map to search your local area for reported crimes. You can look at specific areas, types of crimes and even the day of the week and time of day that the crime occurred.
For some, this is too much information and might freak you out a bit. For others, this is the information that will help to form your decision around home and personal safety.
For us, we keep an eye on the map to see how homes and businesses are being impacted by theft, break & enters and trespassing. The information can give us a feel for local hot-spots where our customers are experiencing these issues, and may be needing to implement or improve their security measures. We are too often getting calls from Customers wanting to install security cameras because they've already been victim to home theft or break & enter.
Personally, I never thought that security cameras would benefit our home or make me feel any different about our home and personal safety. When we became licensed security installers, I thought we needed to have a personal experience with security cameras and we installed one of our CCTV systems at our home. We wanted to not only have a personal experience with our product, but we wanted to know what kind of impact it would have on us and our home, having CCTV installed.
Well!!! I am forever converted.
To put this very simply, I have a much more comfortable and relaxed feeling about my home and everything that we have worked soooo hard for. We have 2 kids and 2 dogs and these cameras have given me a sense of control and freedom all at the same time. I can leave the house (and the dogs) and can check-in 24/7 to see how my puppies are going and that my home is ok. In the middle of the night, when hubby is working late, if I hear a strange noise outside, I can simply grab my phone and check the cameras to see what the source of the noise is. I don't even have to get out of bed - I can see everything from my phone. Its a strange sense of comfort and security that I didn't know I was missing, until I had CCTV.
As an added bonus, our cameras have microphones enabled, which means I can hear what is happening around the home as well as see it. For a puppy mum, with 2 dogs, I can hear if my dogs are ok or barking all day long at the birds... Winning!
In our local area, Redcliffe, North of Brisbane, Qld - robbery reports are on the rise and we are getting an increasing number of requests for CCTV. If you are considering getting security cameras, don't wait until you've been robbed to get in on the action. Get your CCTV solution installed now and experience the comfort and control that your family and your home are under watch 24/7.
If you'd like a quote or more information on CCTV installation. Get in touch with us today. You won't regret it.
Richelle (busy working mum of the worlds cutest kids and puppies).
We are a family business located on the Redcliffe Peninsula, north of Brisbane and our local area has been heavily impacted by theft and crime, like so many other areas are. Our customers are telling us more and more about break'n'enters and stolen property. In particular being close to a suburb with canals we are seeing an increase in goods stolen from backyards and pontoons by thieves in boats.
If you are anything like us, we work really hard (maybe too hard) for the things that we have, and want to do everything we can to protect our property. More importantly, we want our family to be safe and feel secure in our home. For this reason we believe in the importance of added security measures for your home. Security Cameras (CCTV) and Alarm Systems can not only help to deter a "would-be" thief, but also prove useful in both preventing crime and providing vital evidence to police in the event of a crime.
Last week we finished installing security cameras, including a live monitoring station at an apartment block in Redcliffe with over 40 residents. Now the residents can rest easy that they have an added deterrent for thieves and have footage to hand to police in the event that it's required.
Rest easy people - install some security in your homes today.
Systems and prices vary, but you might be surprised to find it doesn't have to be an expensive exercise to install a basic CCTV system in your home.
Give us a call to talk about security and book a quote.
P.S. If you are getting security devices installed, make sure your technician is a licensed security provider.
When you leave your home, whether for a quick weekend getaway or a major family holiday, you’ll want to take some basic safety precautions to keep your house and belongings as safe as possible. Home security is not just for the wealthy, and it doesn't always mean fancy alarm systems and state of the art security cameras. If you are anything like me, you've worked hard to get the things you have and you want to protect them as best you can without going OTT.
Here are a few things that I recommend you consider doing before you leave your home alone.
1. Keeping up appearances
Some of the biggest give-aways to grab the attention of your local robber are the easiest ones to manage. You basically want to give the appearance that there are still people in the home (even if coming and going). Arrange for a trusted friend or neighbour to mow the lawn, collect the mail and generally check up on the house. If you are able to, set timers on a couple of lights or even the TV so that the home has the appearance of being occupied. Even some simple things like leaving a car in the driveway or leaving those pesky kids toys out that have been out there for the last 2 months. Basically, change as little as possible to raise red flags that no-one is home.
2. Hide the Hide-a-key
It just seems to be the done thing these days, that you leave a hide-a-key somewhere on the property for those unfortunate "locked myself out" moments or for the teenage kids. While you may think your hidey spot is awesome, it really is leaving an open door for sneaky thieves who do their homework. Before you leave, give the hide-a-key to a trusted friend or neighbour or perhaps consider a "key-locker". These are a smart little mini safe that can be installed with a combination lock and when opened, has just enough room for your door key. Only those you trust with the combination can get inside to the key.
3. In “Safe” keeping
This might be a good time to invest in a fire/flood proof safe or lockable suitcase. It’s a one-time investment that will serve you for years to come. Not only can you use these devices to secure your important items (e.g. deeds, birth certificates, wills, jewellery, cash etc) while on holiday, it will protect these items in the event of fire or flood.
4. Hold the Broadcast
Sadly, you can’t be too sure who might see your exciting social media post, broadcasting the 2-week holiday you are about to take. The difficulty with even the most security conscious social media user, is that you don’t know who your “friends of friends” are or their security settings. Also, once something is out there on the internet, anyone can share your information without your knowledge or permission and there isn’t a whole heap you can do about it. Your broadcast might be sending the perfect details to a seasoned criminal, for their next “job”. Maybe keep the details of your social broadcasting to a minimum and double check your security settings.
5. Be ALARMED… Our SECURITY is working
Obviously, where possible, we would recommend installing some kind of security system to provide your home with the ultimate protection. With the amount of technology now available to consumers, you might be surprised to find out that it is not always a hugely expensive exercise to install a home alarm &/or CCTV systems. Products range from the very basic to the high-end systems (with live monitored alarms and CCTV which you can view from your mobile phone). According to your home and your budget, I believe you can usually find a solution to suite your needs.
If you aren’t in a position to install working security systems, you do have another option. You can purchase fake CCTV cameras, which are battery operated with flashing lights and can be attached to any area of the home very easily. You can also get generic security signage to make it look like the home is protected by alarms. These are viable options and will give your potential intruders a good reason to leave your home alone, just in case.
Whatever you decide – ADVERTISE your security.
Get cameras with flashing red lights on them. Use security signage to highlight the security measures that protect your home. Be sure to keep this signage non-specific to brands or alarm types.
Security options available at AV Made Easy
What do you do to protect your home?
I get so many questions and calls from customers who just want some help or advice relating to their audio visual technology. I thought it would be a good idea to start capturing some of the common questions and try to provide an online resource for people to get information. So, I hope that you will find some of the information contained in these articles useful. I will try to add as many new relevant subjects as possible to keep you all in the know. I really do want to make AV easy for you too.