An Internet Protocol camera, or IP camera, is a type of digital video camera that receives control data and sends image data via the Internet or local networks.
Unlike analog CCTV cameras, they require no local recording device, but only a local area network. Most IP cameras are webcams, but the term IP camera or netcam usually applies only to those used for surveillance that can be directly accessed over a network connection.
Some IP cameras require support of a central network video recorder (NVR) to handle the recording, video and alarm management.
Others are able to operate in a decentralized manner with no NVR needed, as the camera is able to record directly to any local or remote storage media.