Ask LH: How Can I Run Surveillance Cameras In A Remote Location?

Hey Lifehacker, My father runs a factory which is about 20kms away from our home. It’s in a remote area with iffy phone signals and no internet connection. Trucks comes at around midnight every day for loading, but my father suspects the drivers are also stealing some goods during this time. What’s the best option for monitoring the area? Does it matter that the cameras can’t be connected? Thanks, Insecure

Desert security camera picture from Shutterstock

Dear Insecure,

Depending on how “iffy” the phone signal is, you may be able to get away with a 3G/4G LTE surveillance camera using a pay-as-you go SIM card. Your dad can then keep tabs on the live security feed on a compatible mobile phone and record any dodgy behaviour as evidence.

You can even get wireless, solar-powered models. These tend to be a bit more expensive but don’t require an additional power source to run (and yes, they will still work at night.)

If cellular networks aren’t an option, he could try a motion-activated security camera connected to onsite drive storage or an inbuilt SD card. This will require driving to the location and checking the footage regularly, but if your dad’s employees are stealing on a regular basis it shouldn’t take too long to catch them on video.

Naturally, you also need to ensure that the camera’s native resolution is capable of capturing identifiable number plates and the faces of individual truckers. If the loading area is poorly lit, you’ll also need inbuilt night-vision.

We’re also going to throw this one over to our readers: has anyone ever had to set up a surveillance system in a remote location that lacked internet access? Share your tips in the comments section below.


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