How an IP Security Camera Works

With the summer months approaching, and with school getting out soon, police in many areas report there will be an increase in burglaries.

Many of these burglaries happen during the day while you’re at work. With an IP Camera you can actually check your home from your office computer, and also be recording everything that’s going on while you’re away.

An IP Security Camera is also called a Network Camera.  A network camera connects directly to the internet and has it’s own IP (Internet Protocol) address, which is a numerical label assigned to every device on the internet, such as computers, printers, etc.

IP Security CameraMost “webcams” can send and receive data through the internet, but the term “IP Camera” usually refers to cameras used for surveillance.

IP cameras used for surveillance usually have better features than other webcams, such as resolution of 640 x 180 or more, and HDTV like images produced at 30 frames per second.

These cameras allow transmission of commands such as PTZ (Pan, Tilt, Zoom) over the network cable.

They can function on a wireless network.  The latest cameras can operate without an additional power supply.  The power comes from POE (Power Over Internet) protocol, where the power comes from the Ethernet Cable connected to your computer.

If your IP Camera is wireless, you can place it anywhere you want in your home or business.


The camera is connected to a Router (shown in photo) using a network cable.  Many computers have a “Set-up Wizard“, and along with the camera’s instructions, it will guide you through setting up the camera and router to see pictures on your computer and over the internet.

IP Cameras allow you to record and view video from anywhere in the world.  Some cameras come with motion detection capability and can be set up to notify you of motion taking place via email (or a cell-phone that receives email).

IP Cameras tend to be more expensive than simple “webcams“, but are worth the money for the protection they provide.

The video below is an actual recording from an IP Camera that was watched over the internet by a homeowner from another location (office).

This was actually a well-placed “hidden” IP camera.

As you can see, the thieves are totally unaware of it.  This homeowner was able to call the police while this break-in was happening.  The police caught the thieves as they were coming out of the house and you can see the police at the end of the video going back inside to look for more crooks!

One of the most popular IP security cameras is the Foscam.  It’s a fairly inexpensive camera with great features.

You can stream live video directly to your PC, Smartphone, or Tablet.

You can Pan and Tilt the camera remotely.Foscam IP Camera

It records video and audio, has motion detection and night vision, and the Foscam IP Camera will send you instant email notifications when motion is detected.

The best price I’ve found for Foscam is at  There are hundreds of Amazon buyers and they give this camera mostly good reviews.


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