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Old 02-01-2013, 13:55   #1
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Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

From a security standpoint, the attraction of enjoying remote anchorages comes with the knowledge that there are no witnesses around, in the event of an unlawful boarding.

Some Questions:
  1. Does suitable small camera technology and equipment exist now for marine use that a yacht owner could chose to fit surveillance cameras to cover approaches and boarding’s?

  2. That this could record and transmit via Internet real time surveillance, to be stored in remote servers accessible to only family/friends or security agency?

  3. That this could be turned on and off by users on board when they wanted privacy, but was always used at night or when down below, or if away from yacht?

  4. Do you think public knowledge that yachts were now installing this transmitting surveillance equipment would help dissuade opportunistic boarding’s?

  5. If available and reasonably affordable, would you consider installing this equipment?

Perhaps, this is a way to change public perception of how vulnerable yachts are.

Please this is a technical discussion of passive solutions that does not involve any gun rants
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Old 02-01-2013, 14:08   #2
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Re: Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

Pelagic - The short answer to all your questions is "YES....But". The key consideration is something you addressed in your last question #5. What qualifies as reasonably affordable is going to have to be individually addressed. From my experience in this industry to accomplish all you suggest will take considerably deep pockets... especially the implementations of a monitored systems to meet the recording/transmitting requirements from remote locations and including the subsequent power systems. Bring money.
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Old 02-01-2013, 14:30   #3
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Re: Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

What would you budget for this JoePa?
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Old 02-01-2013, 14:39   #4
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Re: Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

5 figures and up depending on the needs/security comfort of the client, # of access points covered, equipment types, power rqmts and sources and as always the quality of equipment. good exterior security/surveillance hardware will not be inexpensive. I'm often amazed by clients who fail to realize the need for constant power & battery backups so they'll then try and go cheep on recording systems, sensors and/or cameras.

Not one RFP or RFQ I've done for even small systems with that capacity came in below that and that doesn't include ongoing operation or maintenance costs.

Suggestion - You can set up motion activated devices that will trigger small recording devices w/ watermarked(date/time stamped) recording in a preprogrammed loop and can be accessed remotely but will also activate lights and siren/alarms that will scare most intruders away. Still talking 3-5K to pull it off for a very reliable system.
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Old 02-01-2013, 14:49   #5
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Re: Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

To have the images uplinked to a remote site is going to cost some bucks if all you have is a satellite communications. WiFi and cellular is not available at all in some places and where it is available does not go much further than the horizon.

I do like the idea of letting potential baddies know that they are being recorded and there is no way for them to take the recording media with them, since the images are being uploaded the during the boarding. I would also consider recording below deck as well, since bribes and other forms of abuse can occur there.
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Old 02-01-2013, 14:52   #6
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Re: Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

Was a thread recently on similar subject.

Try www.panbo.com May have been there.
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Old 02-01-2013, 14:59   #7
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Re: Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

In order to keep data and power costs down you might look at something like this:

Remote Video Engine XLP (RVE-XLP)

Capital costs could get up easily into JoePa's five figures, but the longwatch system is designed around low bandwidth transmission. Configured with the appropriate triggers it might be feasible over a marine satellite link. Guess it depends on the depth of your pockets and what you would do if the system decided to send more data than you really want to pay for.
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Old 02-01-2013, 15:27   #8
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Re: Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

Pelagic, there are dozens of home systems that do the same thing, eventually either sending out an email when they detect motion, or streaming video or stills, all of it funneling out via a router. Any of those home systems could be converted to a boat since they wind up using wall warts and "12" volts or less to feed the cameras, so all you really need is one with outdoor-rated cameras.

And then as a totally separate issue, there's your internet access. Pick your threshold of main, probably Inmarsat and up since video streaming will require broadband, not a chintzy dial-up-speed connection. That's going to be your stopper.
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Old 02-01-2013, 15:35   #9
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Re: Hi-Tech Internet Surveillance?

The running costs could be cut down quite a bit by only uploading when it's actually necessary: only start uploading if a sensor is triggered and the 'do not upload' button is not subsequently pressed.

I've played around quite a bit with a computer vision library (OpenCV), which can be trained to faces much better than you'd expect -- it'd be interesting to just squelch photos with known faces. So that you only have to deal with the 'do not upload' button if strangers are aboard.

Or put the DVR in a hidden strong box, and start uploading if the panel to the compartment it's in is opened. Figure it takes n minutes to breach the box, then aim for n/2 minutes to upload the recent photos. Maybe first upload the photos with unknown faces, then fill in the rest as time permits.

I feel it's unlikely a warning sticker would do anything. The purpose would mainly be to ensure people are properly identified. Maybe the nuttier among us could pull a McAfee and setup an offshore trust that automatically, and posthumously, funds a hit on those responsible with a couple hundred grand.
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