Monitoring Control Centre, Alarm Installations, Monitoring of and Armed Response
Sandown Bay Security CC ( [email protected] )
What does SECURITY mean today ? Security is not merely an alarm system or burglar bars or a well fed pet. An effective SECURITY SYSTEM comprises a decent ALARM SYSTEM coupled to a CONTROL CENTRE that is manned 24 hrs a day 7 days a week from which a RESPONSE can be initiated. The Control Centre is of paramount importance as this is the central point to which reporting takes place and from which reactions are co-ordinated. Criminals are constantly devising ways to bypass and render useless the protection we afford our assets and ourselves. Modern alarm systems are designed to cater for the protection of persons and assets. The ‘noise makers’ of the past were designed for a bygone era. The security industry as we see it today is made up of players specializing in the various elements of security ranging from guarding to surveillance. It is important to understand that the perspective of each of the players depends on his involvement – an alarm installer needs to make a profit on the installation but may have little concern for the ongoing service of that client. On the other hand the Security Service Provider who has to monitor and respond to the client requires the best product to be used which will give the best information and limit unnecessary false alarms. This may result in the cheapest product being used by the installer while the Service Provider specifies the best. The whole issue is further complicated by alarm system purchases being categorised as ‘grudge purchases’ other than informing one of bad news an alarm will generally not have much to say or do! It is obvious that standards need to be set not only for installations but also for monitoring stations and response entities to ensure that reliable service levels are achieved and maintained. P.S.I.R.A. (Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority.) the mandatory watchdog of the industry as a whole has strict control mechanisms in place for guarding, response entities etc. Regulations concerning monitoring control centres, marketing, maintenance and alarm installations will no doubt follow. In the absence of official control mechanisms the industry has tried to police itself through the establishment of voluntary organisations such as S.A.I.D.S.A (South African Intruder Detection Service Association.) I.S.P.A. (Independent Security Provider’s Association) Essentially both organisations strive for similar goals - meaningful standards, customer security, awareness and control of the industry. How does one assess a Security Service Provider? The basic principles apply: 1. Make sure that the prospective Service Provider is registered with P.S.I.R.A. and preferably affiliated to either S.A.I.D.S.A. or I.S.P.A. Visit the Operations Centre and satisfy yourself of their professionalism. 2. Enquire about the products that the S.P. intends using to secure your premises. Branded products with decent warranties generally ensure quality. If the Service Provider is worth his salt he should be able to show you the product and give you relevant brochures. 3. Ask for references to verify service levels. Try to judge the S.P’s level of commitment by assessing the investment he has made and will in all likehood continue to make. KEY ELEMENTS AS REGARDS ALARM SYSTEM INSTALLATIONS. 1. Key switches, not to be used as primary control for arming / disarming. Can be relatively easily disabled. 2. Remote Activators, only code encrypted type TRANSMITTERS and RECEIVERS are recommended. The cheap ‘Dip Switch’ type remotes can easily be copied. 3. Alarm Process Components. (control panels radio transmitters etc ) are to be placed and secured in an area protected by at least a motion detector and not in an unprotected roof. 4. System Layout. Sandown Bay Security supplies and installs all alarm components at cost price, in return we expect our clients to comprehensively secure their property. In practice this means that all access points are to be covered Motion Detectors facing outward (toward potential danger) in all rooms except bathrooms and toilets where magnetic switches are used on used on the doors. Panic buttons are installed in the Main Bedroom and Kitchen or Lounge. It is not recommended that a correctly installed system be tampered with in any way for it to be “made“ user friendly. All quality systems are capable of arming in a ‘stay’ mode whereby the normal occupancy is catered for but the rest of the house is armed. The facility to manually bypass zones individually is also part and parcel of the modern alarm system. The SBS Option One of the most important facets of security is information. Which protected area is in danger? Who is in the property and/or by whom and how were the premises armed? The more information the Control Centre has the better the Reaction Unit can prepare and perform a response. Sandown Bay Security has lead the way regionally with 250-encryption technology. The FSK transmitters used by us can identify up to 16 Users of your System. A further 24 zones are reported on for burglary, restore, & bypass. In addition to this tampers to the system, and general information such as electrical failure, system low battery, exit error and incorrect code used are also reported to the Control Centre. Excellent communication is all good and well but if the origin of the information is dubious then everything is a waste of time. This brings us to the alarm itself. We only use products that are proven in the international arena (latest technology). Our Suppliers commit to a 24 month replacement warranty. Installations are done to recognised industry standards & specifications by qualified installers only. YOUR SECURITY IS OUR BUSINESS.