Registration allows the Department to use the information or footage gathered from private surveillance cameras to assist in the apprehension and prosecution of the suspects involved in criminal activity.In response to a criminal incident, Department personnel may contact the participant to obtain access to surveillance camera information or footage that may assist in the investigation of a crime.The Department will only contact the participant if there is a criminal incident in the vicinity of the registered surveillance camera.
Registration does not provide the Department direct access to the privately owned surveillance camera system.A participant may withdraw from the Program at any time.The participant’s personal information will be kept confidential by the City unless subject to disclosure by law or court order.
To register your privately owned surveillance camera systems with the Hayward Police Department fill out the online form.
For additional information on how to make your home or business less attractive to would-be burglars as well as camera information, please see the Home and Business Surveillance Camera Guide below.
There are many options available when choosing a home video surveillance system. Unfortunately there is not a single solution that works for every home or business. When looking to purchase a home or business video surveillance system, it is often best to define what you want the system to do and how those needs fit into your budget.
In order to help determine what features you want from your home or business video surveillance system lets first look at some crime trends.
Based on our data, we have found the following to be true regarding residential burglaries in the City of Hayward:
Based on our data, we have found the following to be true regarding commercial burglaries in the City of Hayward:
With this data in mind, we need to look at ways to both prevent a residential or commercial burglary from occurring and, if one does occur, how you can obtain timely suspect information for immediate follow up investigation by the police.
From a prevention aspect, ask yourself a few questions:
From a prevention aspect, ask yourself a few questions:
Once you have addressed the above prevention concerns, now we can move on to the area of home and businesses video surveillance. Home and business video surveillance systems, when set up properly, can act as both a deterrent and a means to help identify suspects should a crime occur.
Video surveillance cameras can act as a deterrent however many criminals have committed their crimes knowing full well they were on video surveillance. Be careful if selecting fake cameras for a deterrent, as many fake cameras can be spotted fairly easily by people that know better. Ultimately your goal is to make your home or business appear less attractive to a burglar than others.
Camera placement should be given a lot of consideration. If you are setting up a video surveillance system that is being actively monitored (typical commercial design), then having a wide field of view by mounting cameras up high, the system can alert you to the presence of an intruder. This provides you time to mitigate the event. If, however, you are a typical homeowner or business that will only occasionally view surveillance live, with most review coming post event, then you want to focus your video on key points of entry or concern. This will allow you to identify any subjects that may have committed a crime. In a perfect world you would do both, high mounted overview cameras and low mounted recognition cameras, but that can get expensive.
Front porch/Business entry: This location is of high importance due to what we know about the crime trends of residential burglaries. Specifically that most residential burglary suspects will knock on the front door before attempting to break into the house. For businesses, this location can help to identify people as they come and in out of the business. Mounting a camera near the front door at head height, allows for the best possible chance to identify a suspect after the fact. This location will typically require an outdoor rated camera and should also be vandal resistant. Purchasing a camera with IR lights built in will provide additional detail when it’s dark outside.
Rear Entrance: This is one of the first places a residential burglary suspect will check once they go into your backyard. It is another good place to have a camera installed for both residences and businesses. This location can be monitored from an exterior camera that can also allow a wider field of view of your backyard or rear loading area or an interior camera facing the rear door.
Side gate: This is typically the way a suspect will get into your back-yard. Having the gate locked is a good first step, however it may not be enough. This location is of lower importance, but is a good access control point in overall security.
Driveway/Front parking lot: This location serves to primarily to watch over your vehicles and the vehicles in your business parking lot, thus the mounting location is typically a higher allowing for a full view of the driveway and lot over the top of vehicles.
Street View: This mounting location is typically on the front of the house or business with the camera facing the street. This location provides a significant benefit to the neighborhood as a whole, especially when multiple residents and businesses are willing to do it. Having cameras facing the street can help obtain suspect vehicle descriptions and possibly license plates, in addition to recording suspect vehicle movement throughout the neighborhood. Due to distance and lighting conditions at night, this is typically your highest quality camera, however can be one of the most important from an investigative standpoint.
Mounting cameras up high covers more ground but will typically not be optimal to see a suspect’s face. Mounting the wrong type of cameras too low will leave them susceptible to theft. Vandal resistant exterior wall mounted cameras can be purchased that allow them to be mounted head high and thus allowing for a clear view of the suspects face. This is a good solution for a front porch or business entry should a suspect come up to the front door to knock before committing a crime.
Many home video surveillance systems have been designed to be compatible with smart phones and tablets. Not only does having remote access allow you to check on your home or business when you are away, but it also allows motion and sound alerts to be sent to your device. Depending on your camera locations, alerts can be set up to notify you when someone is at your front door or when someone has entered your home or business. Keep in mind that many factors can affect the quality of alerts you get, such as pets that stay indoors, shadows in the home/business as the sun moves, residents/customers coming and going during the day etc.
There are many different storage options available for the various home/business video surveillance systems. When it comes to storage, the bare minimum should be 72 hours. Usually, one to two weeks of storage will suffice. If you are planning a long vacation or workplace closure, you might want to adjust the retention timeframe for the entire time of your absence. The more cameras you have and the higher quality video they record, the more storage you will need.
Estimated storage can be determined with a simple online search for a NVR (Network Video Recorder) Storage Calculator. There are several variables that come into play such as compression, resolution, frame rate, number of cameras, continuous video vs motion activated and desired number of days of storage.
Cameras suitable for home/business surveillance can come in a wide variety of image resolution. As a general rule of thumb you should start at 720p and work up from there. Note that just because a camera has a higher resolution does not mean it will work better in a given location under specific lighting conditions. Also note that the higher you go in resolution, it will also require more storage space.
Surveillance systems can range from a single camera, that believe it or not can be free of cost, to as much as you want to spend for high end equipment and multiple cameras. Free you said? Yes, if you have an old smart phone, you can download an app that will turn your old phone into a makeshift video surveillance camera with motion alerts via Wi-Fi. The phone will appear to be off, however the app is running in the background. You can leave the phone plugged in and it will alert you to movement and record video inside your home. More than one burglar has been caught this way.
Home and business surveillance cameras can be mounted on your property and can face both your own property and towards a public place. Cameras should not be viewing or recording someone else's private property that is not visible to the general public. Examples would be a neighbor’s backyard or zoomed into a neighbor’s window. Audio recording is a typical feature of many surveillance cameras. Audio recording can occur on your own property, however should be avoided in a public place where any person has a reasonable expectation of privacy.
You may not use City property. You must find ways to use your own property or work together as a community to install cameras in strategic locations in your community.