Gas Station Surveillance Best Practices

By: Ari Erenthal, Published on Jun 07, 2017

Gas stations are a frequent crime target. They tend to be open late at night, do a large volume of their business in cash, and have few employees, making them a convenient target. In this guide, we examine some best practices for gas station surveillance video, including

  • Camera locations
  • Gas pumps
  • Cash registers
  • Shoplifting
  • Stock rooms
  • Bathrooms
  • Public View Monitors
  • Audio
  • Lockboxes
  • Drive-offs and skimmers

*** ******** *** * frequent ***** ******. **** tend ** ** **** late ** *****, ** a ***** ****** ** their ******** ** ****, and **** *** *********, making **** * ********** target. ** **** *****, we ******* **** **** practices *** *** ******* surveillance *****, *********

  • ****** *********
  • *** *****
  • **** *********
  • ***********
  • ***** *****
  • *********
  • ****** **** ********
  • *****
  • *********
  • *****-**** *** ********

[***************]

Camera *********

*** **** ***** *** station ****** **** ** monitor ***

  • *** *****
  • **** *********
  • *********** *******
  • ***** *****

Gas *****

*** ******** ******** ***** canopies **** ***** *****. These ******** **** **** suppressing *********. **** *** also ********** ******** ********* for ************ *******.

  • ******* ******* ** *** underside ** *** ****** ****** be ******* *********, **** a *********** ****** *********** for ***** **********.
  • ******* ****** ****** ***, ** ******** **** be ********. ********** **** make ******* ******* ***********, but *** ****** **** often **** ****** ********* lighting **** ********* *** exposure **** ***** *** be *********.
  • ******* ****** **** ********* ** varifocal ******. *** **** ** view ****** ** **** enough ** ******* *** vehicle ** **** ** activity ****** *** **** while ***** ********* ****** pixels *** ****/***** ** clearly ******** ******* ***** numbers. It ** ****** **** a ********** **** **** to ****** *** ***** by ******** *** **** in ***** ** *** the **** ******** *****. 

**** *********** **** *** resolution ************, ********** ****** account *** *** ******** height ** *** ******. Gas ******* ******** ******** have ***** ******* ****** to ***** ***** ******* ******** if ***** ******** **** fit. ******** *** ******** between ** *** ** feet (*.* ** *.*) meters ****. ******** * camera **** **** *** create * **** **** directly ********** *** ******. This **** **** *** be ********* ***** *** IPVM **********.

**** *** **** ****** should **** ****** ******** at **** **** ** order ** ****** ******** entering *** *******. ****** gas ******** **** ******** gas ******* ******* *** aisle *** ******* *** ****** on **** *** ** the ****** *** ******* camera ***** ** ***** gas ******* ******. * vehicle ******* ***** *** canopy, ******* ***, *** driving **** ****** ** under ********** ************.

Cash *********

*********** ****** ******** ** gas ******** *** ********** robbed. *********** ****** **** easy ******* ******* ******* they **** ** **** cash ** **** *** locate ***** ********* **** the ****. *** ******* convenience ****** *** **** more ********** *******, ** they *** ********** ** parking *****, ******** * vehicle ** ***** **** quickly.

* ************ ****** ****** be ******* ***** *** cash ********, ****** *** customer. ***** ****** ** another ****** ** *** door,******* ** *** ******, ** *** * head-on **** ** * fleeing *******. * ***** camera ****** ** ******* on *** ******* ** the **** ** ****** anyone ******** *** ******** and ** *** ***** of *** ******* **** left ** *** ***** direction ** ******. **** if * *********** ***** an ****** ** ******* their **** ** ******* a **** ** * hat, **** *****-****** ***** will **** *** *********** the **** *********** ********.********************* * ****** ****** a****** *****. ****** *** ****/***** should ** **** ****** to ******* * ***** image ** * *******'* face. ** *** ** usually **********. 

Shoplifting *******

*********** ****** *** ** attractive ** *********** ** they *** ** *******, and *** *** **** reason: ********** ***** *** easy ******. *******, *****, razors, *********, *** **********, and *** **** *** all ******** ********** *****. When ***** * ***********, determine *** ***** **** of * ***** ******* at *** **** ********. High **** ***** **** cannot ** ******** **** the **** ******** ****** be ******* ** * camera. ***** **** *** be ******* ** * clerk *** ***** ******** for *******.

******* ******** **** **** items ****** ** ** sufficient ****** *** ****/***** to **** * ******* concealing ** **** *** leaving. **** ****** *************** ********* ******* ***** on * ***** ** item ** *********. *********, it ** *** ********* for *** ***** **** being ****** ** **** up ******* ** *** video. **** ****** ***** resolution, *** ********* **** economical, ******* ** ** used *** **** *******. 60 *** ** ***** sufficient.

**********

******** ***** ** **** difficult ** ******* ******* surveillance *******. *************, *** practice ** *** ******** or ************* *** ***********, is **** ** ******. Once * ******* ** owner ******* ** ********** discrepancy, ** *** ** very ********* ** *****.*** ************** *** **** ******** camera *** *** *** pump ****** ******* *** sometimes ** *** **** way ** ***** *************. This ********** *** **** **** the **** ******** **** the *****, ******** ******* reviewing *** ***** ** compare *** ****** ***** rung ** **** *** item ******** ***** ****. Users *** **** ****** for ***** ***** ** transaction **** ********* ** date ** ****** *****. 

******* ***** *** ******** exits ****** ** ********* as ****. **** **** help ******* *********** ***** as **** ** ****** fraud, ***** ********* **** for *********** *** ********* and ***** *** ****** with *** ******.

*********

**** *** ******** ***** cameras ******* ****** ********* in ***** ** ********** vandalism *** **** ***** or ***********. ******* ****** be ***** ** ****** people ******** *** ******* the ********, *** ****** not ** **** ** see ****** *** ******** itself, **** **** *** door ***** *** ******.

Public **** ********

**** *** ******** **** a ***** ******* ** a ********* ******** **** the ******** *** ******-**** *******. * ******-**** ******* allows ********* ** **** an *** ** ***** of *** *** ******* they ****** ********** *******. In ********, ** ***** a ***** ******* **** surveillance ***** ** ** place, ********** ********** ********* and ************ ********* *******.

Audio *********

**** *** ******** ******* audio ********* ** **** as *****, ******** * microphone ******** **** *** cash ********. **** ****** them ** ***** **** they ******* ** ****** selling ***-********** *********** **** as ******* *** *******. Additionally, **** ****** *** station ****** ** ***** credit **** ******** ** providing * ****** ** a ***********.

*********

****** ** *** *** or *** ****** ** restricted *** *********. *****, employees *** **** ** work ***** **** ****** or ** ***********. ******** them ****** ** *** ***** recorder ****** *** *********** that **** ***** ***** or ******* *****,**** ** **** ** not **** * ********. ******* ******** *** ********, ******* *** **** with ** ********. ***** recorders *** ***** ****** inside **** *****, ***** are **** ****** ***** a ******* ** ********* placed *** ** *****. 

Drive-offs *** ********

** *** ****, *** stations ******* ********* ** pump *** ***** *** then *** ** ********* inside, ****** **** **** would **** *** ********* from *** *********** ***** at *** **** ****. This *** *** ******** at **** ***** *****-****. ** * *****-***, a ******** ***** *** and **** ****** ****** off ******* ******. **** crime ******** ****** ** gas ******** ** **** crime *********, *** ******** with * ***** ****** of *****, *** *** stations **** * *** number ** **********. **** gas ******** ****** *** or ***** **** ********* weekly,**** ** ******* **** of $** *** ********. * *****-*** ********* a ***** ******* ***** cause * **** ** $100.

**** *** ******** **** transitioned ***** ** *** **** systems. *******, ***** *** at *** **** ******* increase *** **** **********, ***** *** ******* placed **** ********** ******* systems ******** ******* ****** **** ***********. ****** ************ ******* with ********** ****** *** foot/meter ** *** **** can **** ******** ********* installing ********. 

Comments (12)

Great article Ari.  I always wondered about Class 1/Div 1 or 2 around the pumps. 

I wonder when they will build in cameras like an ATM into them. 

The first best practice is get rid of the old analog cameras you always see on the new with new HD cameras so you can tell who or what you are looking at. 

I agree.

Based on every gas station I've ever been in, I thought best practices was:

- put cameras in the most obscure useless locations and the cash register

- make them as poor quality as possible so they are useless

Ari, thank you for this article, it is very well written and informative.

In response to Greg, we do a ton of ATM surveillance, and although I could see benefit to an ATM style camera in the pump, I tend to believe the cameras that capture the pump and license plate will provide more value, as generally a good license capture and vehicle description is faster for law enforcement to track down. But if you could get the store owners to pay the added cost ATM style cameras inside the pump, the question is when does those class 1 Div 1 requirements come into play, and who makes an explosion proof ATM style camera? 

 

Has anyone trying to put contacts on the doors of the gas pumps to alarm when someone opens the door to install a skimmer?  Thinking Inovonics wireless transmitter and alarm contact. 

Most skimmers today are either stuck on top of the slot to appear as part of the unit or inserted directly in to the card reader slot with a special tool. Most don't bother opening the door anymore as that takes more time and is more noticeable.

The units my customers is having issues with are blutooth and are installed inside the pumps.  Them come back at a later time and connect via wireless to pull data.

Ari,

I enjoyed your article, however I was disappointed that your  overview of how to protect assets did not mention employee safety.  If you have not read OSHA’s 3153 Late Night Retail Recommendations for Workplace Violence I encourage you to take a look at it.   OSHA has started to aggressively pursue General Duty Clause 5.a.1 Citations against Late Night Retail establishments that do not implement the recommendations contained in OSHA 3153. 

If a dealer wants to create a “point of difference” with their customer,  they can do it by sharing knowledge of OSHA 3153 and providing solutions that not only address the loss prevention aspect of security but also address the potentially more expensive liability of not complying with OSHA recommendations. 

There are documented cases where OSHA General Duty Clause Citations have been issued to Late Night Retail establishments as a result of injury or deaths during events that have occurred in a C-Store.  The citations were issued not as a result of the event  but rather as a result of the failure to foresee the potential of the event and the lack of preparation (electronic or physical counter measures) for the event.  The citation amount has just increased from +/-$7000  to +/-$14200.  While (at least for larger establishments) the dollar amount may not create a significate hardship,  once the fine is paid it can create a significant liability in a wrongful death, negligence or premise liability action.

Understanding and utilizing guidance that is provided by OSHA, FEMA, DHS and The FBI provides dealers with the ability to present more effective solutions that help mitigate liability risk when a critical incident occurs.  It can also change the customer’s perception of the dealer’s ability to be a strategic risk management partner.

Thanks for this, Jerry!

I found a copy of OSHA 3153 and will study it in depth. 

You are welcome.  Unfortunately our industry is not keeping up with the new threat vectors created by Active Shooter, Workplace Violence and Cyber Security.  We developed a training program designed to teach sales people to sell outcomes based solutions as apposed to widgets.  Our course covers Risk Mitigation and Critical Incident Response with an emphasis on how Electronic Counter Measures (widgets) can be resource typed and leveraged as part of an All Hazard Response plan.

I've been doing fuel services since I started in this biz some 13+ years ago (my boss's main customer was a major chain he brought with him when he started on his own). I'd say this is a pretty comprehensive list.

One thing we found popular was a camera directly above the till (sometimes covert) to closely monitor transactions as they moved across the counter and into the cash drawers. This protects against both employees skimming the till (slips a $5 in his pocket instead of the cash drawer), and customers scamming their change ("Hey, I gave you a $20 and you only gave me change for a $10!" "No sir, the video shows you only gave us $10". This works better in Canada with our colour-coded money.)

Regarding Michael's idea of sensors on dispenser doors, most modern pumps have built-in intercoms and thus the wiring for them; one could potentially piggy back on that (tie it into the call button, so the intercom buzzes), or have additional wiring pulled in when they're installed. Even without intercoms, almost all still connect back to the paypoint systems anyway; it wouldn't be difficult to rig the door triggers to signal the terminal from there and alert the attendant that the door has been opened (of course, NONE of this matters if a little social engineering is used and the skimmer installer just convinces the staff they're legitimately there to service the dispensers).

It's amazing how quickly the crimes adapt to changes. We used to make sure the canopy cameras could capture plates in case of drive-offs... after Grant's Law came into effect in BC, stations stopped spending the money for those cameras... then they found a spike in the use of stolen credit cards for pay-at-the-pump, and the canopy cameras made a comeback.

 

Shameless plug for the company I work for, but any convenience store/stop and rob that does NOT have cameras set up to capture license plates of vehicles at all entry and exit points, and leaves any blind spots for surveillance, is foolish. I have also noticed in a lot of cases that the surveillance cameras are so high on the building or canopy that a baseball cap will prevent a suspect's face from being recorded.

Read this IPVM report for free.

This article is part of IPVM's 6,443 reports, 866 tests and is only available to members. To get a one-time preview of our work, enter your work email to access the full article.

Already a member? Login here | Join now

Related Reports

Breaking Into A Facility Using Canned Air Tested on Jan 28, 2020
Access control is supposed to make doors more secure, but a $5 can of...
Vehicle Gate Access Control Guide on Mar 19, 2020
Vehicle gate access control demands integrating various systems to keep...
Use Access Control Logs To Constrain Coronavirus on Apr 09, 2020
Access control users have included capabilities that are not commonly used...
Add Door Operators To Fight Coronavirus on Mar 31, 2020
IPVM recommends that integrators advocate and end-users consider adding door...
Anixter Runs Fake Coronavirus Marketing Using Shutterstock Watermarked Images on Jul 24, 2020
Coronavirus faked marketing is regrettably commonplace right now but Anixter...
Vulnerability Directory For Access Credentials on Feb 20, 2020
Knowing which access credentials are insecure can be difficult to see,...
Hands-Free Bathroom Doors For Coronavirus Mitigation on Apr 10, 2020
Coronavirus has increased concerns about picking up germs, especially from...
Uniview Deep Learning Camera Tested on Jul 14, 2020
Uniview's intrusion analytics have performed poorly in our shootouts. Now,...
Camio Presents Coronavirus Social Distancing Analytics on Apr 20, 2020
Camio presented its social distancing analytics for responding to coronavirus...
Cast Presents PoE Perimeter Lighting on Apr 28, 2020
Cast Lighting presented its PoE powered Perimeter fence system during the...
Remote Network Access for Video Surveillance Guide on Jul 27, 2020
Remotely accessing surveillance systems is key in 2020, with more and more...
ZKTeco Presents SpeedFace Recognition + Body Temperature Detection on Apr 21, 2020
ZKTeco presented its SF1008+ reader with body temperature and face mask...
Delayed Egress Access Control Tutorial on Feb 04, 2020
Delayed Egress marks one of the few times locking people into a building is...
Integrated IR Camera Shootout 2020 - Avigilon, Axis, Bosch, Dahua, Hanwha, Hikvision, Panasonic, Uniview, Vivotek on Jan 30, 2020
The best and worst cameras tested in this IPVM shootout showed major...
Help Security End Users Facing Coronavirus Improve Remote Access on Mar 24, 2020
Many end-users and integrators are struggling with the impact of coronavirus...

Recent Reports

Dahua Taunts Australian Government, Continues To Sell Illegal Fever Cameras on Aug 10, 2020
Dahua is effectively taunting the Australian government by continuing to sell...
HID Releases VertX Replacement Aero on Aug 10, 2020
HID is replacing two established and broadly supported types of access...
NDAA Compliant Video Surveillance Whitelist on Aug 10, 2020
This report aggregates video surveillance products that manufacturers have...
Telpo China Temperature Tablets Tested on Aug 10, 2020
The provider for overseas companies ranging from Canon Singapore to US'...
Dangerous Hikvision Fever Camera Showcased by Chilean City on Aug 07, 2020
Deploying a fever camera outdoors, in the rain, with no black body, is...
"Grand Slam" For Pelco's PE Firm, A Risk For Motorola on Aug 07, 2020
The word "Pelco" and "grand slam" have not been said together for many years....
FLIR Stock Falls, Admits 'Decelerating' Demand For Temperature Screening on Aug 07, 2020
Is the boom going to bust for temperature screening? FLIR disappointed...
VSaaS Will Hurt Integrators on Aug 06, 2020
VSaaS will hurt integrators, there is no question about that. How much...
Dogs For Coronavirus Screening Examined on Aug 06, 2020
While thermal temperature screening is the surveillance industry's most...
ADT Slides Back, Disappointing Results, Poor Commercial Performance on Aug 06, 2020
While ADT had an incredible start to the week, driven by the Google...
AHJ / Authority Having Jurisdiction Tutorial on Aug 06, 2020
One of the most powerful yet often underappreciated characters in all...
SIA Coaches Sellers on NDAA 889B Blacklist Workarounds on Aug 05, 2020
Last month SIA demanded that NDAA 899B "must be delayed". Now that they have...
ADI Returns To Growth, Back To 'Pre-COVID Levels' on Aug 05, 2020
While ADI was hit hard in April, with revenue declining 21%, the company's...
Exposing Fever Tablet Suppliers and 40+ Relabelers on Aug 05, 2020
IPVM has found 40+ USA and EU companies relabeling fever tablets designed,...
Indian Government Restricts PRC Manufacturers From Public Projects on Aug 04, 2020
In a move that mirrors the U.S. government’s ban on Dahua and Hikvision...