Do Home Security Cameras Delete Footage – Know Hidden Truth

Do Home Security Cameras Delete Footage

Home security cameras have become an essential aspect of safeguarding our homes and loved ones. With advancements in technology, these cameras have evolved, providing various features like real-time monitoring, motion detection, and night vision. Among the many concerns users have regarding home security cameras, one question that frequently arises is, “Do home security cameras delete footage?” In this article, we will explore the hidden truth behind this matter and shed light on the factors that influence the retention or deletion of recorded footage.

Importance of Home Security Cameras

Home security cameras act as a vigilant eye, providing homeowners with peace of mind and an increased sense of security. They deter potential intruders, help in identifying criminals, and can serve as valuable evidence in case of any unfortunate incidents. However, understanding how footage storage works is crucial to make the most of these devices.

Do Home Security Cameras Delete Footage

Storage Options for Home Security Cameras – Security Cameras Keep Footage

Security cameras come with various storage options, and the amount of storage they have can vary depending on the camera model and the storage method used. Here’s an overview of the common storage options for security cameras:

Cloud Storage:

Cameras that offer cloud storage typically provide a certain amount of storage space for free, and users can also opt for paid plans with more significant storage capacities. The free plans may offer a limited period of footage retention, typically ranging from 24 hours to a few days. Paid plans can extend this retention period to several weeks or months.

Local Storage – MicroSD Card:

Many security cameras support the use of microSD cards for local storage. The storage capacity of these microSD cards can range from a few gigabytes to several terabytes, depending on the camera’s compatibility. Users can choose the appropriate microSD card based on their recording needs and budget.

Local Storage – Network-Attached Storage (NAS) or NVR:

Some advanced security cameras can be connected to a Network-Attached Storage (NAS) device or a Network Video Recorder (NVR). These devices offer significantly more storage capacity compared to microSD cards and are ideal for users who need to store a large amount of footage for an extended period.

Do Home Security Cameras Delete Footage?

Home security cameras are not designed to delete footage automatically, but the continuous recording process can lead to a situation where the camera runs out of storage space. The camera’s behavior regarding footage deletion depends on various factors.

1. Understanding Camera Settings

Most security cameras come with configurable settings, allowing users to customize how recordings are managed. Cameras may offer options like loop recording and motion-activated recording.

2. Loop Recording

Loop recording automatically overwrites the oldest footage with the newest recordings when the storage is full. This ensures continuous recording without the need for manual intervention. As a result, the camera retains the most recent footage.

3. Motion-Activated Recording

Motion-activated recording triggers the camera to start recording only when it detects motion within its field of view. This feature optimizes storage usage and ensures that the camera captures essential events.

Factors Affecting Footage Deletion

Several factors can influence the deletion of recorded footage on home security cameras:

Storage Capacity

The storage capacity of the camera directly impacts how much footage it can store before overwriting old recordings. Cameras with larger storage capacity can retain more extended footage.

Duration of Recording

The duration for which the camera records continuously affects the rate at which storage is consumed. Longer recording periods lead to faster storage depletion.


Cameras may use compression techniques to reduce the size of recorded footage. Higher compression can allow more extended retention of footage without compromising on quality.

Common Misconceptions about Footage Deletion

There are a few misconceptions that need to be addressed regarding footage deletion:

“Cameras Always Delete Footage After 24 Hours”

This is not true for all cameras. The duration of footage retention depends on the storage capacity and settings configured by the user. Some cameras may retain footage for days or even weeks.

“Cameras Cannot Be Hacked to Delete Footage”

While home security cameras are designed with robust security features, they can still be vulnerable to hacking attempts. Hackers might delete footage to cover their tracks, making it crucial to implement proper security measures.

How to Ensure Footage Retention?

To ensure that your home security camera retains valuable footage, consider the following measures:

Regularly Backing Up Footage

If you are using local storage, make it a habit to back up the footage to a separate location regularly. This protects the footage in case of camera theft or damage.

Opting for Cameras with Expandable Storage

Choose cameras that support expandable storage options like microSD cards or external hard drives. This allows you to increase the storage capacity as needed.

Legal Considerations for Footage Deletion

Before installing home security cameras, it is essential to be aware of local laws and regulations regarding surveillance and data retention. Some regions may have specific requirements for how long footage can be retained.

Reduce the size of CCTV camera footage

Reducing the size of CCTV camera footage is essential for optimizing storage space and ensuring efficient data management. Several techniques can help achieve this:

  • Adjust Video Quality: Lowering the video quality can significantly reduce the size of the footage files. However, it’s essential to find the right balance between file size and image clarity, so critical details are not compromised.
  • Compression Settings: Utilizing video compression techniques can further shrink the size of CCTV footage without sacrificing image quality. Modern cameras often come with various compression options, allowing users to choose the most suitable one.
  • Shorten Recording Durations: If your security camera supports motion-activated recording, consider setting shorter recording durations. By capturing footage only when motion is detected, the camera saves storage space by not recording unnecessary footage during inactive periods.

Export Footage – Do Home Security Cameras Delete Footage

Exporting footage from security cameras is a necessary process for preserving critical evidence and sharing it with law enforcement or other relevant parties. The exact steps to export footage may vary depending on the camera model and the associated software or app. However, the general process involves the following:

  • Access the camera’s video management system or app.
  • Locate the desired footage using date and time filters or other criteria.
  • Select the footage segments to export, either individually or in bulk.
  • Choose the export format and destination for the footage files.
  • Initiate the export process, which may take some time depending on the file size and network speed.

Home Security Cameras Recorded Time

Home security cameras can be set to record continuously or on a schedule, depending on the user’s preferences. Continuous recording means the camera captures and stores footage continuously without any gaps. This is often used in high-security environments where constant surveillance is required.

On the other hand, scheduled recording allows users to define specific time frames during which the camera will record. For instance, users may set the camera to record only during nighttime when the property is most vulnerable.

Can CCTV Footage Be Recovered?

The answer is yes; you can recover overwritten CCTV footage, but time is of the essence to increase the chances of successful recovery. Most CCTV cameras utilize a DVR (digital video recorder) to store recordings from the cameras.

1. Instant Action with Video Recovery System: If your important footage has been overwritten, it is crucial to act swiftly. Use a reliable video recovery system immediately to attempt data retrieval from the DVR.

2. Backup Old Footage to Avoid Data Loss: To minimize the risk of losing surveillance data in the future, always ensure you have taken backups of old footage. Regularly backing up data helps safeguard against accidental deletions and overwrites.

3. Recovering Data from HDD or SD Cards: Recovering data from the hard disk drive (HDD) or SD cards is generally straightforward. With appropriate tools, you can often recover lost footage from these storage devices.

4. The Challenge of Data Lost Due to TRIM: However, it’s essential to be aware of a potential challenge when recovering data. Some modern storage devices, especially SSDs (solid-state drives), may use a feature called TRIM. TRIM can permanently remove data to improve performance and reduce wear. Recovering data lost due to TRIM can be difficult or even impossible.


Home security cameras play a crucial role in protecting our homes and loved ones. Understanding how footage storage works is vital for making the most of these devices. Cameras do not delete footage automatically, but proper management and configuration are necessary to ensure essential recordings are not lost. Whether you choose cloud storage or local storage, be aware of the factors affecting footage retention to make informed decisions for your home security needs.

Also Read


How often do home security cameras delete footage automatically?

The frequency of automatic footage deletion in home security cameras depends on the storage method and camera settings. Cameras with loop recording overwrite old footage with new recordings when the storage is full. Cloud storage plans may automatically delete old footage based on the retention period defined in the subscription plan or user settings.

How Many Ways to keep footage for a long duration?

To retain footage for a longer duration, consider the following strategies:
Larger Storage Capacity: Choose cameras with ample storage capacity to accommodate more extended periods of recording before overwriting.
Cloud Storage Plans: Opt for cloud storage plans with extended retention periods to keep footage for weeks or even months.
Local Storage Expansion: For cameras with local storage, use larger-capacity microSD cards or connect the camera to a Network-Attached Storage (NAS) device for increased storage.

What happens with old footage?

The fate of old footage depends on the storage method and camera settings. In loop recording, old footage is automatically overwritten by new recordings when the storage reaches its capacity. With cloud storage, old footage may be deleted based on the retention period defined in the subscription plan or user-configured settings.
For cameras with local storage, old footage remains intact until the storage becomes full and starts overwriting the oldest recordings. Users can manually back up old footage to prevent accidental deletion and preserve critical recordings.

Can i get cctv footage from 5 months ago?

Yes, you can get and this is depends upon the storage method and settings of the CCTV camera system.