sep 23 - 2022

Protecting your Church with a Security System

When properly implemented, a church security systems help protect a church's property, congregation and guests.

A security system for a church is an important element in keeping its congregation, guests and property safe. Like many organizations and institutions many churches hope (and sometimes wrongly assume) that nothing bad will ever happen on their church's property. Unfortunately, we live in an imperfect world in which burglaries or other emergencies happen to those who don’t deserve them. 

This is why having an adequate security system is important for any church. 

The thought of security can be overwhelming and can make you feel a bit out of your element but it’s an important discussion to have. 

We want to help make it feel less overwhelming by discussing the things your need to know in this article.


Exploring Security Systems for Churches

Protecting your house of worship takes more than simply putting up a couple of security cameras. There are various components to security that will allow your church to protect itself.


Surveillance cameras

Security cameras are not only great for monitoring important areas of your church property but they also work as a deterent. Surveillance cameras should be placed in strategic places to ensure visibility while limiting blindspots.

It’s also important to think about the type of cameras you need and how your church intends on viewing the video. Every camera functions differently, has varying levels of video quality and accessibility. 



Whether it is burglar alarms or a fire alarm, a system to alert your church when something goes wrong is an important aspect in protecting the church.


Access control

The traditional use for access control is to keep people out of important places where they don’t belong. This helps churches to reduce the risk of important equipment being broken or things of value being stolen. 

However, there are other uses for access control. For example, your church may be open to various groups with people coming in and out. Traditional keys are easily stolen or lost but with modern access control you can choose who can has access and monitor who enters and leaves.


Smart technology

Like the rest of our life, smart technology has become an integral part of securing a church. Smart technology allows easy access to surveillance footage, alarm notifications, and access control permissions for those who should have access. 

With most churches lacking security personnel, having smart technology provides them with the accessibility they need to make protecting the church more realistic.


Two-way radios

While not part of the security system per se, it is an important part of protecting the church and its members. Two-way radios are essential for larger churches but can also provide great safety benefits for smaller churches. 

Whether you want to monitor the halls as people come and go, or protect the children during the children's programs, two-way radios provide ease of communication to provide the safety needed.


Security Plan

One thing that ties all the security systems together is a security plan. It is an important part of evaluating what security measures are important and what systems are best to fit your needs.

All of these components play an important role in protecting a church. As you may have noticed, some of the components can not be outsourced. 

A security company will help design and install the equipment, but your church will play a role in ensuring that things stay safe. 


Risk Assessments and Planning

Designing a Security Plan for a church building

Every house of worship is different which means the security solutions they need will vary. Some churches may only want a few cameras to monitor parking lots and entrance ways while others need different levels of security like access control. The best way for your church to ensure they have the right security solutions in place is by doing a risk assessment. 

Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a security expert to perform a basic risk assessment (though it would benefit you greatly if you walked through with a security expert). Here is how you can perform a basic risk assessment to help you plan what security systems you will need.

First, identify what areas you need to protect the most. Then walk through the property and identify vulnerabilities. You may also want to take note of any special challenges you have. Once your assessment is complete, you will have a starting point for planning your security solutions.

This process, though it seems unnecessary to some, helps your church to identify potential risks you were not aware of and plan the best approach for your security needs.


Costs of a church security system

A security system for a church will vary vastly from church to church. For example, a simple DIY surveillance system for a small church will cost under $1000, while a large church that needs multiple cameras, access control and other systems will pay over $10,000. 

There are a number of factors that will influence the costs of a security system

  • How much equipment is needed
  • The type of equipment purchased
  • Whether you need to pay for a professional installer
  • Paying for additional monthly monitoring

Some churches qualify for grant programs that help them cover the cost of their security improvements.

Regardless of your church’s needs, it’s important to consider a future-proof security design. This way, if you need to change or upgrade your systems later, it is not an extremely labor-intensive project. 

The best way to know what your specific costs will be is to get a quote from a local security company. They will be able to help you assess your needs, design your security system and provide an estimate of costs. 


Professional Installer vs DIY Security

Most churches have a limited budget when it comes to security. Because of this, many churches look for cheaper alternatives and look to have a trustee, elder or a church volunteer install the equipment. 

This is a much cheaper alternative but it is not always the best security option for churches. 

Pros and Cons of professional security installers vs doing it yourself.



Modern technology has made it easy to purchase and install security equipment. Nearly anyone can go online and order various security equipment for their church online. Is it the right choice for your church?


  • Cheap equipment is available online
  • No installation fee
  • Smart technology is available


  • Need to find someone who can install
  • Risk of improper installation
  • Cameras may have blindspots 
  • Security system may not function or allow easy integration


Hiring a Professional Installer

Many churches rely on the help of expert security professionals to design and install their security systems. It makes securing a place of worship a much simpler process. Is outsourcing your security the right choice?


  • Ensures security system is properly installed
  • Better design limits blindspots and provides improved security
  • Availability of experts to ask questions
  • Access to equipment you may otherwise not have access to


  • More expensive
  • May need to wait for availability in scheduling


Choosing a professional security installer

If you believe hiring a professional installer is the best option for your church, then it’s important to know how to pick the right one. There are a number of security installers near you each having their own specialties. Going back to your security plan and risk assessment will help you identify who best fits your needs.

Once you find some who fit your needs, make sure they have the following qualifications: 

  • Licensed (not all states require licensing, though it helps identify qualified companies)
  • Expertise
  • Services they offer
  • Costs
  • Professionalism

Expertise and knowledge are basic requirements for hiring a security professional. But, it is also important that they are professional and courteous. Your security needs may change over time and it’s important to have a security partner that you can go to when you have questions. 

If you are looking for a security installer in the Mid-Atlantic then contact the experts at Systcom. Systcom technicians not only can design and install your security systems but will also ensure your cables are cleaned up for a clean presentation.

other blog posts: