Why Remote Guarding Is the Best Security Answer for Any Application

From commercial offices to residential complexes to automotive storage and beyond, see how the blend of leading-edge technology and actions is alleviating security manager challenges. 


By Scott Goldfine


Finding monitoring services and security surveillance systems that actually prevent or even reduce crime is proven to be difficult and challenging at best, but more generally involves significant expenditures for systems and guards that absolutely fail to produce results. These conclusions are supported by research regarding continued growth in business losses despite growing investment and expenditures for security.


The key question is whether remote guarding (sometimes also referred to by terms such as remote surveillance, interactive monitoring, virtual guarding, remote monitoring, digital guarding, etc.) is the right choice for your business or organization. If an expert and experienced approach of forensically identifying and addressing the security idiosyncrasies specific to a given industry or vertical market and facility is undertaken to show exactly how a remote security guarding service fits into that framework, then the answer is very likely yes.


With remote guarding services, you gain the benefit of true loss preventions that result from a process that integrates a custom, forensically designed digital guarding system for a facility that supports effective command and control over live events by highly trained agents who are remotely located in an advanced command center using specialized procedures and automated tools. Similar to how drones are used today in the U.S. military, remote guarding security personnel execute complete control over every situation, live and in real-time. High-resolution surveillance cameras are integrated with advanced video analytics, artificial intelligence and high-level cybersecurity offer 24/7 recording of events for client use, while remote agents monitor and respond to any undesired activity in seconds.


Through completely remote, live event, command, control and management of premises security, the chances of a business being the target of a crime radically decreases. Even more importantly, law enforcement partnerships inspired by remote guarding result in priority response that dramatically reduces the impact of potential losses, damages and harm. Local police departments learn to value remote guarding’s ability to save police response and resources by:


1) Completely eliminating false alarms
2) Diffusing potential security events by seeing and speaking to potential criminals, getting them to leave before they can conduct a crime
3) Providing live audio and video support to dispatching and responding officers


With those compelling benefits in mind, let’s take a look at how remote guarding can be directly applied to several different vertical markets.


Commercial/Industrial Businesses
Some of the most important commercial and industrial facilities include, but are not limited to, manufacturing and product assembly sites, warehouses, distribution centers, office buildings, oil refineries, power plants, shopping malls and supermarkets. History has shown that the vexing issues facing security directors, no matter how efficient they may be in implementing a security management plan, include ongoing significant theft and losses. For example, research has shown that the retail industry experiences annual losses ranging from 2%-4% of total revenues. This occurs despite continuing expenditures for security guards, vehicles and technology such as video cameras and systems. 
The bottom line is that every security director or facility manager should jump at the opportunity to implement a service where they can reduce their guards and systems down to a level and process that focuses on real security or safety events only. Remote guarding — with the ability to address and/or diffuse any situation immediately through a system of cameras and analytics, directly and in real-time, including directing appropriate resources of either remaining guards on staff or trained law enforcement to and through the event — is the answer.


Property Management
Property managers are held accountable for everything that is stolen or damaged on that property. In broad terms, property management requires you to ensure that processes, systems and manpower are fully operational and protected when needed, and protected from theft and vandalism when not in use.


Catching wiring and fixture criminals and vandals at vacant buildings before they are able to enter a facility can be a first line of defense focus designed into a custom remote guarding solution and the security procedures and processes used by remote agents. For fully operational buildings, day and night protection and controlled access prevent theft and assault, particularly in parking lots. Automated tracking and control of assets like computers and other equipment or files allows what, where, when and who knowledge of movement and use of company materials


Auto Dealerships
Security solutions and benefits remote guarding provides for automobile dealerships provides examples of what it can offer to all businesses. Securing this industry segment presents one of the most complex security challenges of any vertical or niche market. 


Dealership facilities range from 100,000-500,000 square feet — often with outdoor lots spanning more than 20 acres — and house vehicles, parts and tools worth tens of millions of dollars. Most dealership executives currently have or have in the past had CCTV and security guards deployed, but to no avail. For such demanding facility applications, security guard services are not only ineffective but also costly. 


The fact is that even the best guard can be in only one place at a time, proving ineffective on the expansive properties used for auto dealerships. Meanwhile, the worst guard is making deals with criminals for a share of the spoils.


Replacing low performing and expensive guards with remote guarding and the interactive security systems used to support it directly saves dealerships thousands of dollars per month versus human guard costs. At the same time, the true loss prevention results save additional costs by stopping vehicles or parts from being stolen or vandalized. 

High-End Retail 
Some of the most relevant examples of high-end retail locations that need a crime-proof highly efficient and cost-effective security system are offered by the corporate stores that sell luxury goods such as apparel, jewelry, accessories, and electronics. Although the stores are relatively small, rarely exceeding 5,000 square feet, they often sell expensive products. For this reason, relying just on security guard services is not an option. These locations need access to real-time, live event command, control and management, interactive remote monitoring services. 


In addressing the types of security breaches that such high-end retail stores usually have, remote guarding is particularly effective because its interactivity creates the opportunity for true loss prevention. In the case of a live threat, through either video analytics and AI or a hot button being activated, remote guarding agents are live on camera within seconds, versus even the quickest police response.  


Highly trained agents use judgment on whether to address the event directly and call law enforcement, or to just observe and communicate live activities to responding officers. In either case, law enforcement has full information on what is going on inside with person descriptions and activities, as well as direction of travel and vehicle descriptions as perpetrators depart.
Residential Multifamily & Estates
The demand for high-end housing complexes remains strong. Securing gated communities and estates (meant to provide recreational space, playgrounds, parks, greens and such) is a challenge that interactive remote guarding systems are prepared to address successfully. 


The traditional approach to using guards and/or technology has proven ineffective. Guards take breaks, go to sleep and make deals with criminals. With remote guarding, security guards are reduced to a minimal number required, are monitored and directed by remotely located agents, and no longer reflect a symbol of where security is or is not to potential criminals.
Analogously with the industrial/commercial business facilities, residential and estate sites are highly demanding when it comes to ensuring top-notch, cost-effective and full loss preventions security. The biggest advantage of 100% interactive remote guarding is that it offers full command and control over every activity taking place at the site. Because there are digital guards that never take breaks, go to sleep or make deals with criminals, and that constantly scan and analyze live video, possible intruders or perpetrators are detected within a matter of seconds of arriving on a property.  


With an immediate audio communication voice-downs to them from remote guarding agents — telling them they are being video recorded and that police are being mobilized — crime is immediately diffused as any criminal will move on to another, less protected facility. Event response, damage control and loss prevention has never been so effective.
Where it comes to security, safety and actual crime prevention, custom tailored remote guarding systems are what many businesses and organizations have been missing. Those not taking advantage of this game-changing solution are significantly less secure and likely paying more for comparatively substandard service. 


For those who still need convincing, remote guarding leaders like Elite Interactive Solutions are standing by to provide demonstrations and answer any questions.

About the Author: Elite Interactive Solutions (eliteisi.com) Marketing Director Scott Goldfine is an Industry Hall of Famer with more than 25 years of security technology and business experience. He can be reached at sgoldfine@eliteisi.com.

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