Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

Re: Camera stolen, but no video clip of the event !

Reply
Discussion stats
  • 4 Replies
  • 1156 Views
  • 3 Likes
  • 3 In Conversation
h_ari Tutor
Tutor

One of my cameras mounted on a wall mount was stolen recently, but there was no video clip of the event !!. The camera had more than 60% charge a few days earlier and I have a UPS connected to the base station, so I’m pretty sure neither the camera nor the base station was off at the time.

 

Even though there isn't a usable video clip of the event, there is, however, a 1kb MP4 file on the USB stick (obviously not playable because there is not enough data), which was the last file created by the stolen camera. Perhaps the camera didn’t have enough time to complete its transmission before the thief ran away with it.

 

It was mounted fairly high (~3.5m) and not easily reachable, so the thief must have had to spend more than a few seconds to get it off the wall  (they have ripped it off with the mount). So I’m surprised why none of it was recorded!

 

When I called Netgear customer support, the line quality was quite poor so couldn’t make out everything the rep said, but the gist of it was he couldn’t really explain why there was no recording other than to suggest that the thief may have used a wifi signal jammer. I hardly think that was the case because nothing else was taken, so its unlikely for a thief sophisticated enough to use a signal jammer to disable a security camera only wanting to steal the camera (which if they know any better cannot be used again anyway). I was advised to keep the camera connected in my account to prevent someone else from using it. But I don’t think there is any hope of tracking it down.

 

Anyhow, I am now disappointed with Arlo, because if the camera can’t even record itself being stolen how can I trust it to record something that happens even few feet away?

Model: VMC4030| Arlo Pro Wire-Free Camera
Highlighted
JamesC Community Manager
Community Manager

h_ari,

 

Were there any blind spots that could have allowed someone to get close to the camera undetected? Some users set up multiple cameras with overlapping fields of view to prevent this scenario from happening.

 

JamesC

h_ari Tutor
Tutor

Hi JamesC, thanks for your reply.

 

Even though I can’t say with certainty (since I can’t test it anymore) I am pretty sure there wasn’t a blind spot because it was mounted on the inside corner of a nook like area.  The camera could see both walls to either side of it (which are perpendicular to one another). I also tested and adjusted the camera’s motion sensitivity using its test mode for a better part of an hour while setting it up. Tried to sneak up to it without triggering the sensor from many different angles but couldn’t. However, it occasionally missed me if I quickly walk pass in front of it just a couple of meters away. It was noticeably worse at detecting motion compared to my other Arlo Pro cameras set up elsewhere, so perhaps the motion sensor on that particular camera was defective to begin with.

 

I’m suspecting the thief planned their approach then ran up to it, yanked it off (with the wall mount) and ran away before the camera could react. Or the camera unfortunately glitched out at that particular moment.

 

I read a fair bit about how to set them up and where to place them etc.. so I am aware of the recommended practice of setting up cameras to cover each other, but at $250+ a unit, I can’t really afford to have two at each location.

Guru jguerdat Guru
Guru

We know there's a lag between detection and recording due to the nature of the cloud. What kind of lag was normal for that camera? 2-3 seconds is the best you can do. Of course, then you have to disable the camera by jamming or pulling the battery so something could have been recorded.

 

Seems odd. Perhps the perp moved too slowly to be detected?

h_ari Tutor
Tutor

Hi jguerdat,

Even though cloud/internet delays can effect push/email notifications and online availability of video clips, I don’t see how (or why) it should effect the base station’s ability to start recording videos on to a local USB drive. IMO a 2~3 second delay is not ideal for a $300 camera in this day and age. But unfortunately we all know Arlo Pro has a few second delay, and I think that’s mostly due to a hardware and software limitation of the system (e.g: delay in PIR sensor detecting an event + delay in waking up the video recording hardware + delay in the camera establishing a connection with the base station etc..) than anything else.

 

As for the thief moving too slow, I have no idea how slow a person has to move to trick a PIR sensor (or if something like that could even be done), but how many thieves are skilful enough to defeat a motion sensor or brave enough to take the risk of getting recorded in better detail (since they are moving so slow) ?

 

I think the camera didn’t start recording till it was too late and the thief managed to run outside the base station’s range before it could send any data back.

Hmm….