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Closed Circuit Television, Third Edition

***** Closed Circuit Television, Third Edition. By Joe Cieszynski; published by Newnes/Elsevier, available from ASIS, item # 1746, 703/519-6200 (phone), (Web); 336 pages; $40 (ASIS members), $44 (nonmembers).

If you are looking for a good overview of CCTV systems, this book is for you. It presents an excellent background on the history and evolution of CCTV while also delving into technical information about CCTV systems.

The book is well-written and easy to read, despite having a highly technical slant. Illustrations are relevant and help to clarify the narrative. It is written for a U.K. audience, but it can be easily applied to most regions in the world.

After reading this text, the reader will have a much better technical understanding of CCTV along with many aspects of these complex systems, including troubleshooting some typical end-user and set-up issues. It’s evident that the author has extensive experience with the installation of CCTV systems and is keen to pass along useful information to the industry.

The book is probably best suited to students as it is written from a broad scope. A CCTV installer may find it a bit light on details, while security consultants who define overarching plans for systems, and facility managers who own systems may find it a bit too heavy in technical information.

The author should have written the book with the end user more in mind. Some performance outcomes are described in the book, but it doesn’t discuss how these can be aligned with end users’ needs. The reader would benefit from an awareness of the process involved in designing and matching the system with the environment and organization.

Overall, however, the book is a good reference to include in a library for CCTV information.

Reviewer: Susan Gallagher is director of Susan Gallagher Consulting Ltd. in New Zealand, specializing in physical security and project and risk management for both government and the private sector in New Zealand and Canada. She is a member of ASIS.