What is Mobile Video Surveillance?

In order for law enforcement to perform their roles as efficiently as possible, they’ll need access to high-quality equipment. This is especially true for surveillance operations.

In particular, mobile video surveillance provides a notable amount of utility that law enforcement officers can take advantage of. But, not everyone knows how to go about it.

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Let’s take a look at everything you need to know.

So, What Exactly Is It?

As the name suggests, mobile video surveillance refers to equipment that can be transported to a location and then used to gather important information about the surrounding area, situational awareness or a criminal investigation.

The key attributes that are most heavily focused on are portability and ease-of-use. This type of technology would lose much of its appeal if it were notably difficult to set up or operate (think bulky pole cam trailers).

In the context of law enforcement, mobile video surveillance can be used to monitor large gatherings such as protests, sports or special events. It can also keep watch over a particular individual or location, or serve as a lookout for an entire area. This will allow law enforcement to quickly respond to any sort of incident that needs their attention. 

A common scenario where this type of surveillance is used would be monitoring for any suspicious activity during a large public event. Since crowds can attract criminals, law enforcement needs equipment to help them perform their duties at maximum efficiency.

While gatherings invite thieves to take advantage of unsuspecting attendees, there is also the risk of an attack on large groups of people. The capability of reliably pinpointing suspects, vehicles, license plates, objects, etc., is imperative.

Mobile surveillance technology is also capable of providing clear, secure video at high speeds. This is a task that is difficult or impossible to achieve through other methods.

What Types of Surveillance Equipment Are There?

There are multiple different types of mobile video surveillance that you can take advantage of depending on your mission. A drone, for instance, can be used to provide law enforcement with a clear aerial view of a particular area. 

This is one of the most convenient ways to get a wide-area view, though the drone’s battery will only run 20-30 minutes on average. It can often help officers locate criminals or evidence that they otherwise would have difficulty finding.

In other scenarios, video surveillance is conducted by using a vehicle along with the equipment. Specialized vans can be parked near a location and used to surveil an area, or surveillance equipment can simply be mounted to a vehicle in order to make transporting and using the equipment a seamless process.

One of the most efficient types of surveillance equipment is a portable telescoping surveillance mast. 

This piece of equipment can be set up virtually anywhere and can serve as a mobile vantage point for law enforcement officers. It’s often used at events, large gatherings, or where situational awareness is required.

Downtown areas can benefit from the presence of a surveillance mast at any given time. 

These masts can be elevated to up to 50 feet in just seconds, allowing them to provide an essential point of view in the shortest amount of time possible. Generally, they only require one person to operate, and the individual doesn’t need any sort of special training or license.

A drone, on the other hand, requires FAA licensing in order to legally operate.

How Can I Take Advantage of This Equipment?

Although this type of equipment offers plenty of utility, there are certain pieces that are more suitable for different situations. Choosing the right one is essential in order to achieve the best results possible.

A drone is able to provide the most widespread area surveillance from angles that are often impossible to achieve otherwise, but it can’t remain in the air indefinitely. Within 20-30 minutes, the drone will need to be charged or require a battery swap. 

Surveillance towers, on the other hand, can be deployed and maintained at a single location as long as you need them. They can also provide a high level of visibility in any type of weather. 

So, you’ll need to determine your own needs in order to get the most use out of mobile video surveillance equipment. Fortunately, there’s an option for every situation.

Is This Practice Ethical? 

It’s common for people to question whether or not additional surveillance is necessary. Many public areas are constantly surveilled by security cameras at businesses, warehouses, etc.

But, this footage is not always enough to apprehend criminals as quickly as possible.

Mobile surveillance technology is used as a tool in order to increase the efficiency of law enforcement agencies. Those who manage and operate the equipment are properly trained to do so, even if the equipment itself doesn’t require training to operate.

This means that only the practices which are taught and facilitated by law enforcement agencies are used, which should be ethical.

Understanding Mobile Video Surveillance Can Seem Difficult

But it doesn’t have to be.

With the above information about mobile video surveillance in mind, you’ll be well on your way to making the decision that’s best for you and your department. 

Want to learn more about how we can help? Feel free to get in touch with us today to see what we can do to assist with your mobile surveillance needs.

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