Cutting-edge Security Technology to Protect Construction Companies

shutterstock 578108446By Roy Rasmussen

A would-be thief got more than he bargained for when he tried to steal a $1,200 saw from a construction site in University Park, Texas. When the suspect tried to get in his car and flee, one construction worker jumped on the hood to prevent him from seeing the road, while others pursued in a pickup truck. The truck then began bumping the car to force it off the road, knocking the back off of the vehicle. Instead of getting away with the saw, the thief barely escaped a beating, and was eventually caught and arrested.

Unfortunately, construction robbery attempts aren’t always unsuccessful. One pair of thieves in Brooklyn made off with more than $100,000 worth of equipment stolen from six different construction sites. Construction equipment theft has risen in recent years and now costs companies between $300 million and $1 billion annually, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau. Loaders, tractors and excavators are the three most tempting targets. Copper, power tools and hand tools are other vulnerable items. Here are some of the technologies construction companies are using to protect themselves from the rising risk of theft.


Surveillance is key to construction site security, both for deterring thieves by letting them know they’re being monitored and for identifying suspects. Construction camera systems come in a number of specialized types designed to fit all types of surveillance needs, including wired and wireless varieties, black-and-white and color cameras, unidirectional bullet and multidirectional dome cameras, wide-angle lenses suitable for covering large lots and other options.

One of today’s most popular options is mobile surveillance units (MSUs), which are cost-affordable, easy to install at any location, energy-efficient and can be monitored remotely from smartphones or PCs. Surveillance cameras with time-lapse capability can also double as marketing tools to record site progress for promotional videos.


Cutting-edge cameras work best in conjunction with automated and remotely controlled lighting technology. Lighting can serve as a deterrent that lets burglars know they’re visible, and can also improve the quality of suspect-identifying details picked up by surveillance cameras. Lighting can be controlled from a remote location or set up to activate automatically when motion sensors, vibration detectors or video cameras detect a potential intruder. Suddenly being caught in a light can provide a powerful deterrent that drives thieves away.


Mobile surveillance unit and lighting options can also be integrated with alarms for maximum deterrent effect. Like lighting systems, alarm systems can be controlled remotely or automatically. Loud, blaring alarms tripped by sensors or cameras can scare thieves off, while silent alarms can be used to bring authorities to the area before a criminal knows they’ve been caught. Alarm systems can be monitored by professional security services to provide maximum protection for your construction site.

Warning Signs

To optimize the effectiveness of surveillance, lighting and alarms, these tools should be paired with warning signs that alert intruders to the presence of advanced security technology. Letting thieves know they’re being targeted by technology can make them think twice about trespassing on your site and persuade them to move on to easier targets. Your security equipment or service provider can supply you with professionally designed signs that have graphics and verbiage calculated to deliver a deterring message.


Surveillance cameras, lighting, alarms and warning signage form four components of a comprehensive, effective construction site security solution. Adopting and deploying these technologies can help keep your site’s crew, equipment and clients safe.

Roy Rasmussen, coauthor of "Publishing for Publicity," is a freelance writer who helps select clients write quality content to reach business and technology audiences. His clients have included Fortune 500 companies and bestselling authors. His most recent projects include books on cloud computing, small business management, sales, business coaching, social media marketing, and career planning.

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