What is Unmanned Surveillance?

Unmanned Surveillance is, in other words, an investigator that never sleeps.

By Carla Rodriguez | Oct. 25, 2023 | 3 min. read

What is Unmanned Surveillance?


Unmanned surveillance is the use of covert, stationary cameras that blend into their environment in the form of a prop and conduct discreet, legal video recording. These hidden cameras can take the shape of a strategically positioned vehicle, construction cone, or drone.

Through this service, high definition cameras are housed within a locked, waterproof enclosure, tailored to best fit the needs of the location.


For example:


There is suspicion of a staged accident that happened in the busy, at times dangerous, city of Chicago. Placing a human investigator for hours of vigilance on the scene might raise suspicion amongst fraudsters. It would be a risky place to get caught and potentially unsafe for the investigator. This is where an unmanned system comes in to play because it can safely, and remotely capture footage in high risk areas.


What’s the benefit?


Unmanned surveillance systems offer the gathering of evidence and uncovering fraudulent activities without incurring the costs of a traditional investigation. This service offers:

  • Cover surveillance: a good investigations company will put the right investigator in the right place, so they don’t stick out like a sore thumb. However, sometimes automation is a better option.
  • Access to high risk areas: some cases may require investigation where it may be dangerous or physically impossible to send a human investigator.
  • Cost effective: deploying human investigators for 24/7 surveillance can get expensive quick. Unmanned systems are a cost effective solution.
  • Daily updates: advanced technology allows for constant updates.
  • Exact time stamps: you will have video links that record the changes from one second to the next with continuous recordings.
  • Generates 2x the volume of claimant activity: unmanned systems do not get tired or distracted ensuring, consistent, quality recordings.


What are the cons?


Sometimes technology doesn’t do what its told. Here are the facts – no sugarcoating.

Privacy Concerns: Only surveillance footage that does not infringe on the rights of an individual should be recorded. Sensitive, personal data collected without consent can bring more issues than aid.

Technical Limitations: At the end of the day, technology is only as powerful as we let it be. Therefore, surveillance equipment may have technical limitations, such as limited battery life, range, and resolution. This can lead to incomplete or low-quality evidence.

Lack of Human Judgment: Unmanned surveillance lacks the nuanced judgment and empathy of human investigators. In certain cases this can be a positive but a human will always be part of the process from installation to reviewing of the footage.

Technical Failures: Glitches or system malfunctions can disrupt surveillance operations, potentially missing critical information.


So, do you need it?


Unmanned surveillance is like having an extra pair of watchful eyes working tirelessly towards closing your claim. It offers game changing advantages like 24/7 monitoring, access to risky areas, and cost savings. However, it should be conducted thoughtfully by an experienced investigations team that knows the limitations of its technology. This service can be used in tandem with traditional manned surveillance efforts, but using it on its own can get you just enough information to validate or refute your claim.

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