Todd Morris Sits Down With Digital Parent Podcast to Discuss Nanny Cams, GPS Tracking and More
Recently, BrickHouse Security Founder and CEO Todd Morris sat down with Sedgrid "Sed" Lewis for his Digital Parent Podcast to discuss ways in which parents can protect their children using technology.
The conversation begins by talking about how BrickHouse Security came to be, with Todd outlining what motivated him to start the company in 2004.
"The premise was really around providing technology for parents to keep track of their children in this modern age where very often technology is much more prevalent than it was when we were growing up," Todd says.
Initially, Todd says, many of the "leading-edge" technological solutions that were available on the market were often complicated and difficult for everyday consumers. So, for a while, many of BrickHouse's customers were law enforcement and security professionals.
As technology has become more accessible over the years, more companies entered the market offering similar solutions. This fact led the discussion to what separates BrickHouse from other, larger companies like eBay and Amazon.
Todd describes BrickHouse's difference through its support; by having a team of security experts working with customers to not only find the right product for their needs, but also to teach them how to use it—a glaring difference between big-box resellers. Often times if a customer is frustrated by a complicated product, their first impulse is to return the item when dealing with larger company.
"If you buy a nanny camera because you're concerned about the health and well-being of your child, returning it doesn't solve the problem; you need to actually learn how to use it. And hopefully get one that works well," Todd says.
Of those solutions, Sed focuses the discussion to nanny cams, asking why parents turn to them and how the technology works.
"The idea of a nanny camera is to provide a sense of well-being and a sense of assurance that your child is in fact being cared for well," Todd says. "And if there is a problem you would find out about it quickly and be able to address it; which allows you to more effectively focus on your work in providing to the needs of your family."
Oftentimes, parents don't turn to nanny cams if there is an actual suspicion of abuse, Todd says. But rather it's a way of building trust between a nanny and a parent. Once the nanny cam reinforces a parent's trust, they're usually checked less and less.
"The most common reason people are getting a nanny camera isn't because they actually have a realistic fear that something is actually happening that will affect the safety of their child; because if they felt that they wouldn't leave the home unattended at all," Todd says. "Generally, it's a question of just peace of mind. They feel comfortable with the nanny, therefore they're leaving their child with the nanny. But without a little bit of verification it's the little things that help build trust."
Sed then addresses other uses for nanny cams, specifically how they can be a great tool for building trust with teens and young adult children in the same way they build trust between a parent and a nanny.
From nanny cams, the discussion turns to how parents use GPS trackers, discussing functionality like real-time tracking, speed alerts, geofences and more. One of the biggest questions Sed brings up is why parents would select a dedicated tracker as opposed to an app.
"Having a dedicated GPS tracker that your child may not know about in the car that they're driving is not a bad idea," Todd says. "Teenagers didn't magically become safer drivers in the last 20 years. Parents just started giving them the keys earlier because they're both working and they can't get them to soccer practice."
Sed also brings up how GPS trackers can help reduce insurance costs for parents of teen drivers.
"When you hardwire a GPS tracker into your vehicle you can get what's called the 'theft recovery deduction', which is usually a 10-20% deduction depending on your insurance for having a 'theft recovery device'," Todd says. "It's the same deduction you would get by putting LoJack in. The difference is it's a lot less expensive than LoJack and you can check on its whereabouts yourself, independently."
After discussing GPS trackers, Sed brings up bullying, which leads to a conversation about how body worn cameras can help those being bullied, especially children with special needs who may be nonverbal, to gather evidence of any abuse.
The discussion on body cameras leads to how both police and the public can use cameras (both body worn and in-car cameras) to help keep each other accountable.
In the closing part of the conversation, Sed asks Todd for any new products or solutions coming out from BrickHouse Security that could be especially beneficial for parents.
"It's not always about the product, it's about the concern," Todd says. "That's one of the reasons why we differentiate ourselves; by having a hotline parents can call to speak to a real person."
Visit the Digital Parent Podcast here.