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Cisco Meraki Documentation

Motion Alerts


Motion events get triggered when a portion of an area in the MV's field of view is changed, causing motion to be detected. When this occurs, an alert will be generated which will be directly sent to the configured email address. An example of what the email alert looks like is shown below:

Screenshot 2023-11-28 at 16.03.png


By default, your motion alert email will include a motion recap image that corresponds to the relevant event. More on Motion Recap here. However, if you have Restricted Bandwidth Mode enabled, you will not see an image.

If you are unable to see a Motion Recap image and you do not have Restricted Bandwidth Mode enabled, it is likely that SSL inspection is utilized upstream of a Meraki security camera. If so, please disable this to ensure you can view Motion Recap images.

How to Enable Motion Alerts

  1. Navigate to Cameras > Monitor > Cameras
  2. Select a node from the camera list page
  3. Navigate to Settings > Motion Alerts to configure alerts for this specific node

Motion Alerts settings location with red boundary box highlighting selections.png

Motion alerts can be configured to be sent always, never, or only during a scheduled trigger event. Schedules created for schedule-based recording can be used or new schedules can be created. Increasing minimum event duration will reduce noise from various minor events that may be inconsequential.

Configuring Areas of Interest

Areas of Interest allow you to select specific portions of the frame that you want to have motion alerts for. Only motion within the specified area will trigger a Motion alert. More than one Area of Interest can be configured if needed. In addition to capturing two separate regions of motion in the camera's field of view, configuring multiple Areas of Interest can also be useful to cover a single expected path of motion to reduce the number of potential false positives.

Areas of Interests configuration section.png

Motion Sensitivity

Higher Motion Sensitivity means that relatively smaller objects passing in front of the camera will generate an alert. On the other hand, lower sensitivity means that only larger objects passing in front of the camera will generate an alert.

For example, if motion sensitivity is set to 95%...

  • 3% of Area of Interest with motion → no alerts   

  • 5% or more of Area of Interest with motion → alerts! 

A small bird that flies through the Area of interest may only cover about 5% of the region covered. You would need a higher Motion Sensitivity value of at least 95% (100% - 5%) to trigger an alert for an event covering this small region. 

On the other hand, a larger car passing by may cover as much as 50% of the region of interest. In this case, a lower Motion Sensitivity value of 50% (100% - 50%) or higher would trigger an alert. 

Motion Sensitivity and Areas of Interests settings with original car image overlaid.png

The Motion sensitivity and Minimum event duration for trigger sliders can be used to minimize the alerts that are generated due to trivial motion. When these values are set, a rough estimate of the number of alerts that will be generated per day can be seen from the bar chart as shown below. For example, decreasing the Motion Sensitivity from 100% to 56% would reduce the number of alerts that would be generated per day from 168 alerts to 21 alerts. 

Motion Alerts Gif showing dynamic chart populating alert levels against historical data.gif

Alert Only on People Events

Note: This feature is only available on second generation MV and newer  

In addition to configuring motion sensitivity and duration, you can minimize alerts from a camera by only triggering it when a moving person is detected by the camera anywhere in its field of view or within specific region of interest (if selected).

When Alert Only on People Events is enabled the alert is sent only if person's motion is detected and motion matches the alert configuration: areas of interest, sensitivity and duration.

Alert only on people detection with areas of interests.png

Configuring Email Recipients

Currently, motion alert notifications are only sent via email (although there is a way to send emails to an SMS phone number). To configure email recipients, go to Network-wide > Configure > Alerts. Default recipients will always get motion alert emails. Custom recipients can be configured if these users should only get motion alerts and no other Meraki alerts. To do this, select Custom recipients for motion alerts and enter the recipient's email address.

All network alerts will be sourced from the same email address. To ensure that alerts are not being lost to a spam filter, please be sure to add as a trusted email source.

Sending Emails to an SMS Phone Number

It is possible to have email alerts forwarded as an SMS to a phone number. When configuring email recipients, follow the best practices below:

  • Alltel:
  • AT&T:
  • T-Mobile:
  • Virgin Mobile:
  • Sprint:
  • Verizon:
  • Nextel:
  • US Cellular:


Note: Each alert generated by the dashboard will link directly to the relevant video clip, no manual video scrubbing needed.


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