Sunday, 29 July 2012

More Malaysian houseowners invest in security equipment now

PETALING JAYA: Concern over house break-ins have led an increasing number of middle-income urbanites to install closed-circuit television that allows them to observe what is going on in their homes even when they are away.

Security equipment distributors said most of their customers are middle-income people living in terrace houses, condominiums and flats who pay between RM3,000 and RM10,000 to install a default package of eight cameras, a television set and a DVR recorder.

Market prices for CCTV cameras range from RM150 to RM600 a unit. A basic DVR recording device costs around RM1,500.

Checks by The Star showed that homeowners usually had CCTV cameras installed in the porch, side and back areas, living room, kitchen, stairs and bedrooms.

Centrix Security Sdn Bhd general manager Jeffrey Tan said the manufacturer has seen a 40% jump in sales of its equipment, particularly CCTV cameras, in the last three months.

According to market estimates, he said, Malaysians were spending over RM5mil per month buying CCTV units.

He said the company now supplied over 5,000 units a month to distributors and expected sales to rise as people became more security- conscious.

Secom Malaysia Sdn Bhd gene-ral manager Kenji Ishida agreed that residents had become
more concerned about home security.

“They have formed associations. Some even invest in CCTVs for the whole neighbourhood while others put up perimeter fencing and set up guardhouses,” Ishida said in an e-mail.

Tham Kok Hing, who runs his own CCTV distribution and installation business, said customers usually order a package deal which includes eight CCTV units.

However, an average double-storey terrace house requires only four cameras to cover all prime vantage points, according to Centrix Application and Development manager Fabian Low Soon Tuck.

“One camera should be placed in the porch area and another at the back of the house. Inside, a camera should be placed in the living room as that is the place where most robberies start and one in the kitchen because most robbers usually enter from the back or through the window,” he said.

Low said customers can have v-cards in their recorders which would sync their CCTV footage online, enabling it to be viewed on mobile devices like laptops and cellphones.

“When an alarm is triggered, users can log on the Internet and see what is going on at home despite being far away,” he said.

According to a National Key Results Area on Reducing Crime analysis by Pemandu (the Performance Management and Delivery unit), house break-ins accounted for 18% of the crime index last year.

Police spokesman ACP Ramli Mohamed Yoosuf said there have been many cases where home CCTV footage had been used to apprehend criminals and solve cases.

By NICHOLAS CHENG nicholascheng@thestar.com.my

CCTV system affords safety and peace of mind


PETALING JAYA: Teacher Faruk Senan Abdullah installed 10 CCTV cameras in his house in Penang two months ago after reading about the spate of house break-ins in the newspapers.
“I felt my home needed extra protection besides the alarm system,” he said in a phone interview.

Faruk said he regularly checked on his home by logging into the CCTV footage with his mobile phone while overseas.

Extra eyes: Faruk pointing to the CCTV camera installed in his house after reading about the recent spate of crimes in the newspapers.
 
“The technology is very convenient and I can ensure that my family is safe even when I am away,” Faruk said.

A manager in Damansara Utama who wished to be known only as Ahmad said he and his family feel safer after he had several CCTV cameras installed in their home after a few scary incidents.

“Once, a few thugs tried to break into my house while we were at home. My wife was mugged in broad daylight outside our own house a few years ago.

“That's when I decided to install eight cameras in the hope that the sight of them would make criminals think twice about breaking in,” Ahmad said.

Despite several break-ins in the neighbourhood, Ahmad said he and his family feel safer and have not been targeted since installing the CCTV system.

For Yong (not her real name), the four CCTV cameras installed at her home did not just catch the robbers in the act, but also helped the police to bring them to justice.

The mother of four said her home was burgled by two men and a woman one afternoon while she and her family were out shopping.

According to the camera footage, they climbed over the front gate after realising no one was home.

“The two men pried the front door open while the woman blocked the front and back camera and distracted passers-by. But the side camera that was obscured by the air-condition unit caught their faces and the police could identify them,” Yong said.

The trio were later arrested in Mont Kiara.

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