Warehouses are used by all kinds of businesses from retail, manufacturing, import and export, to transport and customs, etc.
They are easy targets for criminals because they usually house goods worth millions and are mostly situated in remote locations. These two make a great combination for burglars trying to sneak in and steal items of value for quick cash.
In addition to that, with the constant foot traffic of the warehouse workers and delivery consignments, keeping a track of who enters the warehouse, and when, can become quite a challenge.
One of the top 10 biggest heists in the country includes the Brinks Mat Robbery where robbers targeted a warehouse at Heathrow Airport and found gold bullions worth £23 million.
Warehouse fires are also a very common occurrence that results in potential loss of life and money. While some are unintentional and caused by accident, others are very much intentional and done to fulfil a personal vendetta.
Due to the high-risk factor with owning and managing a warehouse, it is imperative to the security of the property and its assets to employ the right measures to not just ward off external threats, but also keep internal ones in control.
Warehouse security systems, such as CCTV cameras, burglar alarms, access control systems, and fire alarms ensure that the property remains safe and the goods inside them stay protected.
Read on to find out all about warehouse security systems, how to choose the best one for your needs, and how they can benefit you as a warehouse owner:
WAREHOUSE SECURITY SYSTEMS
The top warehouse security systems include CCTV cameras, burglar alarms, access control systems, and fire alarms. Here’s how they can help warehouse owners and managers:
- Prevent external threats such as burglaries, intrusions, vandalism, and any sort of malicious acts.
- Prevent internal threats such as employee theft.
- Stop unauthorised access with a proper system of recording and tracking the movement of anyone entering the warehouse.
- Control fires from spreading, saving both lives and property.
- 24/7, day and night uninterrupted security.
- Cost savings in the form of loss prevention and having to employ security guards for every nook and cranny.
- Remote access from absolutely anywhere in the world with a smart device and an internet connection.
- Save up on insurance premiums and be able to make a claim in case of an unwanted incident.
- Integrations with one another provide a more comprehensive security plan covering all the potential threats.
CCTV CAMERAS FOR WAREHOUSE SECURITY
The expansive area that warehouses usually cover can be a huge challenge in the protection of goods and the safety of their employees.
The inability to keep an eye on every corner of the premises makes it essential to use CCTV monitoring for warehouses.
Positioning the cameras in a way that they monitor and record all the important areas reduces the possibility of burglaries and unwanted incidents.
CCTV cameras are one of the most effective deterrents against burglaries and help keep outside threats and the employees’ actions in check.
With real-time, as well as recorded footage to be accessed later, CCTV cameras ensure that there are no intrusions and deviations in the inventory.
Here are a few key factors to consider when choosing the best CCTV cameras for your warehouse:
A camera is only as good as the images and video it captures and the most important thing that determines the clarity of the footage is the camera’s resolution.
This is one of the most important features of the CCTV camera since it gives you a better view of what happened and the faces of the people to be held responsible.
CCTV cameras come in a range of resolutions ranging from 720p to 4K, with a minimum resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels recommended for warehouses.
Field of view
The field of view is how much of the area the CCTV camera covers and which mainly depends on the size of the lens. The wider the field of view is, the bigger the area of coverage.
Some cameras have a fixed field of view while others have an adjustable lens that can be panned, tilted, and zoomed depending on the requirements. This feature enables one CCTV camera to work in place of multiple fixed cameras with a limited area of coverage.
Mostly everyone has access to a smartphone these days with more and more people relying on their services for their day-to-day tasks.
CCTV cameras can send push notifications to your smartphone as soon as any movement is recorded enabling you to keep track of real-time events and always stay in the know, especially when your attention is most required.
Professional CCTV monitoring ensures that the warehouse is being watched over by trained staff in an Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) in real-time.
This is especially beneficial for when the warehouse is unoccupied or in a vulnerable state. The real advantage of detecting a threat while it is in progress is the action that can be taken to deal with it, such as notifying the owners or keyholders and alerting the police.
Power supply and battery
Some CCTV cameras work on direct electricity while others run on batteries, both of which are prone to stop working in the event of a power outage or battery failure. This can be a serious concern for the safety of the warehouse since opportunistic burglars keep a lookout for such vulnerabilities.
Backup batteries are crucial for both systems and a feature worth considering since it gives you confidence that your system would be running at all times despite any power interruptions.
The prices for CCTV cameras vary considerably depending on the type of system and the features that they boast, and your budget will play a huge deciding factor on choosing the best one for your warehouse.
Due to recent advancements in technology and their increased demand, the prices of CCTV cameras have gone down substantially and the systems are now affordable for everyone.
There are various types of CCTV cameras, each of which comes with specialised features used for a specific purpose.
The most popular ones include bullet, dome, C-mount, PTZ (pan/tilt/zoom), day/night, infrared/night vision, network/IP, wired, wireless, and high definition (HD) CCTV cameras.
BURGLAR ALARMS FOR WAREHOUSE SECURITY
Burglar alarms are one of the pillars of warehouse security that work as an effective deterrent against burglaries and intrusions.
Burglar alarms for warehouses work to serve two basic purposes; alerting the people inside of an intrusion and scaring away potential intruders.
They work using a series of sensors that go off as soon as they detect any suspicious activity, notifying the people in charge to take the necessary action. Their main components include a control panel, sensors, keypad, sounder, and batteries.
Burglar alarms come equipped with different kinds of sensors and choosing the right kind is key to their efficiency.
Motion sensors are used to detect movements and are very handy when the requirement is to detect unusual activity in the warehouse. Other sensors include infrared, ultrasonic, microwave, magnetic, photoelectric, and glass-break detectors.
There are various types of burglar alarms to choose from with the primary difference being the level of alertness each offers.
The type you choose for your warehouse depends on the requirements and the level of protection you’re looking for.
Some of the common ones are:
These are the most basic form of burglar alarms available that make a loud noise, sometimes accompanied with flashing lights, to alert someone nearby and hopefully scare away the intruders.
Bells-only alarms don’t alert you or the police in the event of an alarm trigger and require someone to be present on the premises to respond to the alarm.
They might not be the best choice for a warehouse situated in a remote location since, unless the owners employ a security guard to monitor the security system, the alarm would most likely go unnoticed with the intruders having a field day.
Just as the bells-only alarm, auto-dialler alarms activate an auditory or visual, or both, alert when someone tries to gain access into the warehouse.
However, in addition to that, they also automatically dial the warehouse owners, managers, or whoever’s nominated to be contacted in the event of an alarm trigger.
These are a much better option, given that the system has a stable phone line or strong mobile network to make the calls, and also that the people to be contacted are quick to respond.
Monitored burglar alarms alert a professional monitoring centre, also known as the Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC), in the event of an alarm trigger.
The ARCs are manned by experts who notify the warehouse owners, nominated keyholders, or the police, guaranteeing that the alarm never goes unnoticed and that action is always taken.
These are a great choice for warehouses offering great peace of mind to the owners, managers, and workers, and are particularly effective when the warehouse is uninhabited, such as during the night.
ACCESS CONTROL SYSTEMS FOR WAREHOUSE SECURITY
The first step towards warehouse security is installing physical barriers, which include reinforcing the doors and windows and upgrading the locks, for protection against unauthorised access.
With so many workers running here and there, heavy machinery being used back and forth, and daily turnover of shipments, access control can be a bit of a challenge.
It is good practice to have strict policies in place that restrict people’s access to only areas that they are authorised to be in, and that’s where access control systems for warehouses come into action.
Access control systems are keyless door entry systems that control and manage access along with establishing access permissions for different areas of the property.
These permissions not only determine the areas the user can be granted access to, but can also include specific permitted hours of access as well.
It results in not just controlling intrusions from the outside, but also ensures that the warehouse workers are always in their designated areas and not wandering here and there, in areas where they are not supposed to be.
Access control systems work by authenticating the identity of an individual by checking the credentials entered into the system against a database saved in the server.
There are various types of authentication methods that warehouse access control systems can use to grant or deny access. They include:
Access cards, usually the size of a credit card, can be inserted into the system, swiped, or scanned using RFID technology, to grant access through electrically-locked doors.
Each card carries a unique pin that serves as an identification credential which is checked by a card reader mounted on the door or the wall next to it.
Quite like using an ATM, this authentication method makes use of pin codes given to the employees in the warehouse.
The code is entered on a numeric keypad fixed on the system and access is granted upon entering the correct code. Upon entering the wrong code, access is denied.
One of the safest and most secure authentication methods available, biometrics use your unique biological features such as fingerprints, retina scans, and facial recognition to grant access.
The system checks the unique identifiers with an earlier saved version of the data and, if they match, the system verifies the user’s identity permitting them to enter. If the data doesn’t match, the entry points remain locked and access is denied.
Remote access/Smart locks
Remote access or smart locks give users the ability to control the locks from a remote location. Instead of being near the locking mechanism, they can use their smartphone, tablet, or computer to lock or unlock a door.
The system also enables notifications and updates to be sent when a door is opened, locked, or unlocked, along with restricting access to certain times of the day.
FIRE ALARMS FOR WAREHOUSE SECURITY
Fire safety is a huge aspect of warehouse safety since they store all kinds of goods, some of which are highly flammable.
Warehouse owners are required by the law to have a proper fire risk assessment done and install fire alarms best suited to their needs.
One of the main causes of warehouse fires are electrical faults and accidents due to negligence. Fire alarms not only detect accidental fires but are also effective against arsonists.
All fire alarm systems operate using specialised detectors that can sense smoke or heat. In the event of the presence of either, an alarm is triggered to warn people inside and outside the warehouse of the possible danger.
The two types of fire alarms and the most suitable one for your warehouse depends on the size of the property and the type of setup you are running. They are:
Conventional fire alarms
Conventional fire alarms work by dividing the property into zones that give a rough idea as to where the fire has occurred, the precision of which is controlled by the number of zones and circuits that have been wired within the premises. They are less precise and, therefore, more suited to small warehouses.
Addressable fire alarms
With addressable fire alarms, each device on the system has an address or location, and each device is monitored from a central location. This enables identification of the exact place where the fire erupted, making them the perfect choice for large commercial properties such as multi-storey buildings and huge warehouses.
CONTACT CALDER SECURITY
Calder Security offers a complete solution for your warehouse security needs and guarantees the best service in all of Yorkshire and beyond.
We offer professional installation, monitoring, maintenance, and repair for all kinds of security systems. We have expertise in dealing with burglar alarms, CCTV cameras, access control systems, and fire alarms for unparalleled warehouse security.
We are SSAIB approved installers and follow all the best practices in the industry. We do not compromise on quality and install only high-quality, state-of-the-art security equipment.
Our expert installers guide and train users before leaving the site, making sure they are comfortable with the system and understand how it works.
Contact us here for a quick consultation or call us on 0800 612 9799.