Farm security part 2: 3 new technologies that will keep your farm safe

By: Anna Game-Lopata

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With security cameras being more advanced, accessible and affordable than ever before, there is no excuse not to turn to technology to help keep your farm safe. ANNA GAME-LOPATA checked out some of the latest products to stop you being robbed.

In part one of our farm security feature last week, we explored the issue of farm theft and realised it is faced by more farmers than ever before across Australia.

The problem is, some farmers are still not willing to invest in the technology necessary to keep their farm safe. However, security camera technology nowadays is available at a 10th of the price it was three years ago, with phones and tablets able to live stream.

So what’s holding you back?

In part two of our farm security feature, we look at some of the latest security technologies that are not only affordable, but are also easy to operate and are well capable of thwarting farm thieves in their tracks. 

Farm security part 1: Farm theft and tips on avoiding it

 

 

Shaft Alarm

Shaft -alarm -&-battery

The Shaft Alarm can sit on remote assets for up to three years without needing to be checked due to its custom lithium powered batteries.

The Shaft Alarm is a totally portable, lithium battery powered 3G or 4G alarm system with GPS capability.

Armed using a simple one-word text from the owner or via the control room, the Shaft Alarm can monitor anything anywhere so long as it has 3G or 4G network coverage.

The product, developed by Victoria-based security technology company It’s Secure is portable and can be bolted to fences and gates giving early warning of movement and possible intruders.

It’s Secure founder and director Colin Steel says the Shaft Alarm can sit on remote assets for up to three years without needing to be checked or moved at all due to its custom lithium powered batteries.

"Once in armed mode the Shaft Alarm measures movement and motion, triggering an alarm event accordingly," he says.

"It can set so that the slightest bump will trigger it or utilising its 120 plus different settings it could sit on a building site container next to a train line and still not trigger."

Steel says the Shaft Alarm has four different axis settings enabling it to be set up in any environment.

"The Shaft Alarm is different in that it can be moved daily to a variety of sites and has the ability to both monitor and track different assets," he explains.

"It is able to be monitored by a control room or as an individual unit.

"It can also be rented to clients and we have a rent-try-buy option also. In this way, the Shaft Alarm can also be used to increase or monitor revenue, by placing it set it to arm on a dry hire piece of equipment for example.

"When it moves you know the person hiring the equipment is moving it and thus you are assured of the days hire revenue."

Shaft -alarm -on -Remote -rural -properties
The Shaft Alarm utilises GPS and the mobile network to monitor remote properties and track equipment

The Shaft Alarm is only one of a range of products offered by the company, which was started in 2011.

"Today we have in excess of 500 national clients offering alarm installation and ‘back-to-base security monitoring into nearly 1,100 locations," Steel says.

"We offer access control and CCTV installations, service, upgrades, wireless intercom systems and now after 18 months of research and development, we’ve released a new product, the Shaft Alarm."

Steel says the feedback to date on the Shaft Alarm has been overwhelming.

"With all the testing that has been completed over the past six months, we have successfully limited unwanted intruders on two different properties that have had problems with shooting and small theft.

"We have Shaft Alarms currently monitoring earthmoving and farming equipment, gates and fences, commercial properties, a crop plane and helicopter, building trailer and jet ski trailer and we have a hire company that to date [120 days] has billed out in excess of $50,000 in additional hire."

Moving forward, Steel says he plans to continue promoting the Shaft Alarm into the global market over the next 24 months.

"We are currently working on a version that will see The Shaft Alarm aid in the emergency services sector," he reveals.

"The aim for It’s Secure is to keep growing and assisting the market place to prevent theft and crime."

Go to theshaftalarm.com.au for more information.

 

Outdoor motion cameras

Outdoor Cameras Australia Uway VH200HD Security Camera 600x 450
Outdoor Camera’s most popular security unit is the black flash camera (Uway VH200HD)

This range of small battery operated security cameras, distributed by Queensland-based Outdoor Cameras Australia are made to sit out in the rain and sun and record what passes in front of them.

"We have kept our products to a key set of reliable models that pretty much sell themselves as they are the best in the market in their price range," says Outdoor Cameras Australia founder and owner Damien Byrne.

"Local governments, police, schools, shopping centres, farmers, machinery operators, wildlife management organisations, acreages and mining companies make up a large percentage of our client base."

Byrne says Outdoor Cameras has steered clear of the cheaper, less reliable models of remote cameras as the business is big on getting results for customers not just handing over a product.

"Our cameras are being used to protect expensive items so they need to be reliable," he asserts.

"We test every model we can get our hands on and when we find a good one we stock it. Only a small percentage of those tested are stocked as most can’t handle Australian conditions.

Byrne adds the company spends a lot of effort making sure the customer knows how to use the product and if required troubleshooting with them over the phone or in store.

Damien Byrne Demonstrating Camera
Damien Byrne, left, demonstrates one of his cameras to a customer at Farmfest in Toowoomba this year.

"Our units are also small, easy to hide and very easy to set up," he says.

"There is no wiring required, no poles need to be erected to mount them on, they are just strapped or mounted to existing structures or hidden away. Also our black flash models still provide excellent night vision which is hard for many cameras to do."

Byrne says one of the main benefits his customers enjoy is piece of mind.

"If they suspect something has happened they can go to the cameras and see," he says.

"They can see if it was just a mate’s truck and have their mind put at ease, or if they have an intruder they can take the evidence to the police. They’re not wondering what is happening all the time.

"Also being able to provide police with the evidence they require in order to catch those responsible helps everyone. The arrest of two men caught on camera stealing fuel led to a 70 per cent drop in fuel theft in one community. It was thought the perpetrators had been at it for quite a while.

"We get quite a bit of footage sent to us and stories from our customers," he relates.

"We’ve seen instances where because an image quality was so good, the football club a thief belonged to could be read on his shorts and he was apprehended as a result.

"Another customer was being burgled every year after shearing. They were sick of it, so they installed a camera and caught three brothers helping themselves. Police identified them straight away. That customer no longer has any troubles."

Visit Outdoor Camera’s Australia’s website to find out more about the company’s offerings.

 

Silvan Selecta Sentinel System

Silvan Selecta Sentinel
The Selecta Sentinal system can operate up to four security cameras day or night  

A third security option for farmers is Silvan’s brand new Sentinel system, released recently as part of its Selecta asset protection range.

Silvan says the system is capable of day and night video monitoring and is ideal for watching over businesses, farms, homes, workshops or valuable possessions.

The new Sentinel system comes with one camera and base station LCD screen which can be expanded to manage up to four cameras wirelessly up to 150m from the base station.

With the wireless function, operators are able to install the cameras at accessory buildings surrounding the home or business without stringing long cables around.

Silvan says its Sentinel system cameras are rated for indoor and outdoor use and are capable of working around the clock and features broad night vision range up to 15 metres. That way, operators are able to monitor activity captured by the cameras from the base station or live from a mobile phone.

Operators are able to record activity on the Sentinel system either manually, scheduled or via a smart motion activated loop that keeps six seconds of footage from before the movement of an intruder is even detected.

Recorded activity is kept separate from the camera through recording to an SD card in the base station, away from prying eyes. 

Silvan Selecta spokesman Michael Frost says the Sentinel system is an inexpensive solution for around homes and businesses where there is access to 240V power.

"Increasingly we are receiving reports of thefts from farms, machinery dealerships, yards and service areas," he says.

"The strong message coming from authorities including the Police forces Australia wide is that theft prevention or deterrence is an individual responsibility."

In addition to the new Sentinel system, products in Silvan’s Selecta security range include basic warning signs, heavy chain locks, wireless driveway sensors and motion activated cameras.

Visit Silvan Australia’s website for more information.

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