Designing of surveillance has always been a challenge for the security managers across facilities. Over a period of time, the designing of surveillance has evolved and the standard method being used to assess a site and design the surveillance of any facility is the “Asset Area Criticality” method. The method is already being used in various ways, under various other names. However, here we shall see how this can be standardised and a template be derived for ease of designing.


It should also be noted that this template can be used to derive to a design for any facility, be it a manufacturing unit or a corporate office complex or even a warehouse.



Before we start the designing exercise, the site should beanalysed for risks and threats to create the templates. Important areas of the facility should be listed. A physical visit to the respective locations and interview with various non-security stake holders should be conducted to understand the security threat perception in totality. Criticality of the area should then be concluded based on these inputs. Assets in the facility should be listed and criticality of these assets should be noted. This data will help us in designingcameras with the intention to capture the operations of the facility to act as deterrent, to keep a vigil on any suspicious activities and can be used to analyse any incident, post its occurrence.


Development of Design

Risk mitigation options as part of surveillance system design shall have to be considered in the range of basic, progressive and industry leading options. The design has to be formulated on the basis of the risk assessment. Aim of this exercise shall be to work out the most cost effective mix of technology controls and various types of cameras to arrive at robust and effective security architecture. The process of finalization of the options shall have to be a collaborative one, where the key stakeholders responsible for security within the management would arrive at the final security frame work for the site. For ease of designing, it is always better to start by dividing the site into the following layers of surveillance.


Layers of Surveillance

Outer Layer.It is generally the outermost perimeter, at which physical security measures are used to deter, detect, delay and respond against illegitimate and unauthorized activities. Controls at this layer shall generally be designed to define the property line and channel people and vehicles through designated and defined access points. This layer shall consist of positioning of cameras on entrances/exits, perimeter and nearby areas.


Inner Layer.Usually, several inner layers can be established. We may consider the inner layer as shop floor or office areas. Value of an asset being protected is directly proportional to the amount of protection required.


Critical Layer.The critical layer consists of areas other than operational areas which are of high importance. These areas may hold assets of critical values. For example, in office scenario the cabins of executives can be considered critical areas and in case of banks, strong rooms.

Example of Application

For the easy understanding and implementation of this method, the templates have been designed for a sample warehouse. However, this can be customized as per your installation.

This step involves considering design options that are directly associated with, and responsive to, the major risks as identified in the site risk assessment.

Methodology of Sample Template

13. The surveillance system template can be created under the domains listed below,though these domains can be further exhaustive.

a. Area Classification.

b. Assets Identification.

c. Recommendations - General positioning of cameras.


Areas Classification

As we begin the exercise, areas have to be identified and classified into broad three categories – Highly Critical, Medium Critical and Low Critical. For the purpose of this exercise, let us take a case of a ware house.


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