What Does An Alarm Do?

Deter

A major role in alarm systems is to deter would be thieves and vandals. Window decals and yard signs play a major role in this regard. Several industry studies have delivered the consistent conclusion that criminals avoid homes and businesses with alarm systems.

One such study went into prisons to question those convicted of break and enters. Their response was simply, "When I see a home with an alarm system, I move on to one without one." They also added that dogs acted as little deterrence compared to an alarm system.

Detect

Although alarms do a great job of deterring criminal activities, they do not stop somebody from breaking in. If a criminal wants in, they are coming in. The job of the alarm system now is to detect them. To recognize when somebody has entered an area you have deemed to be off limits. This is quite a simple and reliable thing to do, and we will explain how in a later section.

Report

Once the system detects an intruder, it's job is to report that detection. It can do this in two ways.

The most basic and lowest level of reporting is a local siren. A siren sounds in the premise or on the outside of the premise. It is loud and meant to attract attention from neighbours or passerby's. Unfortunately we have been exposed to car alarms and sirens so much in our society, that people tend to ignore them or even worse, become angered by the noise. Either way they do nothing. The other concern is that we rely on a neighbour to come running to the scene and potentially put them in a dangerous situation should they come face to face with an intruder. If you are going to utilize a local siren only, then instruct neighbours to call the police, and not toapproach your home or business.

The second way that an alarm system reports intrusion detection is through a monitoring station. The monitoring station is staffed seven days per week 24 hours per day. As a signal comes in, the operators dispatch the appropriate authorities. If it is a fire signal, they send the fire department. If it is a burglary signal they dispatch the police. If it is a medical alert, they dispatch an ambulance. Monitoring stations also alert keyholders when events occur. All activities are logged, including conversations with premise, keyholders and police dispatch officers. Having your system report via a monitoring station is the most effective, and common method.

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