A digital security video system at a California credit union includes fraud and robbery surveillance at ATMs.
A Southern California credit union recently replaced a tape-based system with digital security video. While the firm wishes to remain anonymous, here is their story.

Says the client, "We had a system from Advance Security Link (ASL) of Costa Mesa, Calif., installed in our credit union facility. Our previous system involved VCR tapes and a multiplexer. We decided to make the change to digital after becoming frustrated over the time it took to search for security situations on tape, and the poor quality of the pictures once we were able to find them.

, typical of many financial institutions, the credit union has positioned some security cameras at ceiling level.
"With our old system, it took so much time to find what we were looking for on the tape that we tended to ‘let things go’’ that should have been looked into sooner, such as someone casing the office. Additionally, if we had needed the picture printed, we had no way of printing it on-site. The cost for off-site printing was prohibitive, and, for anything other than a robbery situation, hard to justify.

"With the new system, we can get a digital picture out to staff or law enforcement immediately, in order for them to be able to identify a specific person if they come into the credit union again. These digital pictures have all the benefits of electronic viewing, recording and transmission.

"Remote access capability was a selling point as well. Not only can management view the camera output from a remote location, but also remote access can be provided to our local law enforcement. In the event of a robbery, especially a takeover situation, law enforcement personnel will have a view of the inside of the credit union at their fingertips. They’ll see what we see.

"We have cameras that view teller stations, ATM transactions from inside and out, interior areas, exit/entrance doors and the staff parking lot.

"Each area is monitored for different reasons. The teller stations are obvious; they include robbery and employee issues. The ATM is monitored for fraud and robbery situations as well. One of the features of ASL’s ATM BankWatch Solution system is the ability to show the transaction receipt along with the picture of the person conducting the transaction. If there is ever a question of who used a member’s card, we’ll have the answer in seconds.

Monitors at some doors provide employees a look-see at what is behind the exit.

Staff feels protected

"The exit/entrance door cameras are a new addition. We take deliveries downstairs on a daily basis. We wanted to see and record who comes in and out. The staff parking lot cameras are mainly to deter anyone from ‘hanging’ around the back of the facility while staff are arriving and leaving. The staff feels protected with the presence of cameras. Another new addition is a camera near our vault area. If there is ever a discrepancy in the vault, we have a record of who came and went. Again, this protects staff as well as the credit union.

"We had our first occasion to use the new system just one day after installation. A man came in to cash a stolen check. Within minutes we had images of the man from a number of camera angles, which we loaded onto a CD for the police. Everything worked, and just as promised. We were thrilled.

"I would like to point out how extremely affordable the system is. It provides a great return of our investment in the form of high performance."

A digital security system captures images of incidents and can provide law enforcement with images immediately.

The installer

Red Hawk Industries., Ontario, Calif., chose ASL for its progressive technology and its adaptability to financial market security such as ATM transaction recording and motion detection recording at strategic camera locations. According to Dave Rohrbacker, California account executive for Red Hawk Ind in California, "The ability for a security director to remotely call up branches and view live images or download specific ATM transactions has proven to be a very effective tool in responding quickly to robberies, check fraud and ATM Reg E. claims."