Cheap CCTV Systems

In this short blog, we run through five clear reasons businesses should avoid cheap CCTV & security camera systems. When dealing with potential new customers, we engage with a range of people in various roles.

This can vary between technical and IT professionals, PAs, office managers, business owners, and more. Not everyone we deal with is a security expert and not everyone we meet is in a technical role.

Therefore, the price of a CCTV system can often play a major part in the decision-making process, as the buyer is often in the dark about what they truly need for their business or the company they work for.

Companies want security but, like many business decisions, the cost of deploying a new system is a factor. However, what price do you put on keeping people safe, protecting assets, and dealing with security incidents effectively?

Why Should Businesses Avoid Cheap Security Systems?

The are a number of reasons we feel cheap CCTV systems are the wrong choice when considering your commercial security options.

When speaking to new potential customers, protecting assets, buildings, and staff are key objectives for these businesses. Furthermore, detecting and deterring intruders, and preventing theft are critical security threats these businesses face.

As a result, businesses should approach security as an investment.


To summarise, cheap security cameras are prone to outages, provide poor quality footage, and can be prone to hacking. Therefore, cheap CCTV systems are an impediment to security.

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Looking to learn more about why you should avoid cheap CCTV camera systems? Let’s get started with this article!

1. Cheap CCTV Systems Can Be Unsuitable For Outside Use

When it comes to commercial CCTV systems, quality over price should always prevail.

A cheap CCTV system may give owners of residential properties some peace of mind and act as a deterrent to petty criminals.

However, when it comes to commercial security, you will need a more robust system.

Businesses operate in locations often highly exposed to the elements. Wind, rain, sleet, and snow can have a negative impact on a cheap CCTV system.

Cheap security camera systems, if exposed to harsh elements, may fail. This leaves the system redundant and not fit for purpose.

When a system fails, the footage is lost.

Lost footage can’t be used to catch criminals.

2. Low-Quality Footage

Cheap CCTV cameras don’t provide the footage quality of high quality, commercial security cameras.

A highly visible system, coupled with CCTV signage may act as a deterrent.

However, if the footage quality is poor, the chances of catching intruders, vandals and other criminals are greatly reduced.

Furthermore, CCTV is often used internally within a business to monitor staff behaviour, settle disputes, and more.

In the event of workplace theft or bullying, how will low-resolution cameras providing poor quality footage help in these cases?

It won’t.

If employees don’t feel safe, motivation may reduce and confidence in their employers may wain.

In this instance, cheap CCTV systems are simply bad for business.

3. Cheap CCTV Cameras Can Be Prone to Hacking

Businesses invest in CCTV to protect staff, assets and property.

Some businesses have a handful of staff, some hundreds.

Some businesses have thousands of pounds of equipment to protect, some have millions.

A recent article by The Guardian indicates some off the shelf security systems can be hacked, leading to distress and more.

You can read the article here – Dozens sue Amazon’s Ring After Camera Hack Leads to Threats and Racial Slurs

Food for thought?

4. Buy Cheap, Buy Twice

It’s an old saying, but it’s true.

It’s one thing to buy a cheap microwave for the office kitchen. However, a security system designed to protect dozens of staff and hundreds of thousands of pounds of property is another.

Microwaves can be replaced in minutes, with minimal fuss and implication to the business.

Buying a cheap security camera system may save money in the short term.

However, if you have to replace cameras, cabling and equipment every year, the costs will mount up, as will the disruption caused by the required work.

When combined with each point raised in this article so far, this further makes the case against installing a low-cost CCTV system into your business.

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5. Quality of Workmanship and Accreditations

A cheap off-the-shelf CCTV system can be fitted by most people with access to a toolbox, van and a basic understanding of electrics.

However, there is a huge difference in required skill set and experience, when it comes to installing a robust IP CCTV system to help protect a business’s staff and assets.

Here at Safeguard Systems, we are SSAIB accredited. According to the SSAIB website, this accreditation is a “mark of excellence” and states the following:

“The Security Systems and Alarms Inspection Board (SSAIB) is the leading certification body for organisations providing security systems and services, fire detection and alarm systems, telecare systems and services, manned security services and monitoring services.”

Our installers are security systems engineers, trained and experienced in fitting commercial CCTV systems.

Our systems are fitted to the high standards set through our membership. And our customers can rest easy knowing, their CCTV systems are robust, effective, and fit-for-purpose.

In addition to being SSAIB certified, Safeguard Systems holds a number of other accreditations, and our installers are DBS checked.

Looking For a CCTV System For Your Business?

If you’re in the process of finding a new CCTV system for your business, you can learn more about our range of security camera systems for businesses.

Alternatively, pick up the phone and call us on 0800 689 1835.