11 Practical Ways to Save Money by Avoiding False Alarms from Your Commercial Security System

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Lately, authorities in jurisdictions across the country have begun to crack down on local companies by charging fines for false alarms in order to recoup some of the costs associated with responding to these calls. These new practices only add to the overall costs of security for an organization and compile unnecessary stress onto the shoulders of the business owners. 

As a leading integrator in the commercial security industry, Invision Security Group strives to provide our customers with a customized system that will greatly minimize, if not eliminate, false alarms completely, giving them back their peace of mind. 

There are a lot of ways that your security system could throw off a false alarm causing confusion during the workday or waking you or your employees up in the middle of the night. Fortunately, there are a variety of ways that business owners can avoid these inconveniences by implementing some simple modifications to their company’s day-to-day policies & procedures. 

We asked our experienced and dedicated staff of installers, service technicians, salespeople and customer support specialists for their best tips for avoiding false alarms and were inspired by their responses to share the wealth with our loyal customers. 

1.) Ensure that the designated employees have the proper access codes to disarm the system if necessary. Those that do not have access should not be trying to disarm the system.

2.) Be sure that individuals that are on your call list are aware that they have been designated as such and are responsive to phone calls or alerts during off-hours.  They should also be aware of what factors related to the business could trigger a false alarm so they are prepared. I.e. construction, animals on the perimeter, etc.

3.) You should be training your staff monthly or quarterly on your own protocols. Having more than one person attend the post-installation training is key.

4.) If you are using motion sensors, ensure that they are placed in an area that has minimal background motion and/or noise. Placement is very important. 

5.) After having your windows and doors cleaned, be sure to check any connections that are a part of your system.

6.) It is important to have sufficient delays on doors for employees and/or patrons that walk slower than the average person, i.e. retirement communities, hospitals, doctor’s offices, etc.

7.) Refrain from hanging signs and banners from the ceiling. Also, remember to turn off ceiling fans and remove any balloons after a party. These could set off motion sensors after the system is armed while the air is circulating. 

8.) Make sure that the batteries in any motion sensors and all door and window contacts are in good working order.

9.) Maintain & test your entire system monthly or quarterly to ensure all devices are functioning properly.

10.) Always advise your alarm monitoring provider of construction projects taking place at your facility or in the area or if something is damaged.

11.) If you suspect trouble, call your security provider as soon as possible. Do not wait until the end of the day. If something seems off, it probably is; trust your instincts.

If you and your staff follow this handy list of guidelines to administer your own security system in-house, you will greatly lessen the chance of having a costly false alarm inconveniencing you while you are busy running your business. 

If you found this article useful or would like to add other suggestions, feel free to reach out to us and give us your feedback. We love hearing from our customers.

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5 Reasons Your Security System is Out of Date

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Is your security system as old as your business? Or perhaps you upgraded your surveillance system a couple of years ago. This does not mean your system is current! Technology is ever changing and lucky for you, we love keeping up with the times and trends and all the new systems and specs that come out! Here are 5 reasons your surveillance system may be out of date.

1.  Off Site Recording– Recorders do not need to be at the location where all those cameras are! Keeping your NVR (Network Video Recorder, if you do not know this name, there is another reason of out of date!) at your home or satellite office and seeing another location is a nice feature! Do you have a employees who are not the most trustworthy, or perhaps a sneaky teenage kid who can turn off the unit. This would be a perfect way to prevent those issue from coming to light.

2.  Closed Platform – If you have a closed surveillance system you’re making a big mistake. Choosing an open software platform will give your system flexibility over time by allowing you to use various makes and models of cameras. A closed platform limits the potential of your system. All of the systems we sell are non-proprietary, meaning you can add,  or change to just about any brand and they will still work! Something that is a very important trait when choosing to upgrade.

Technology is ever changing and lucky for you, we love keeping up with the times and trends and all the new systems and specs that come out!

3.  Remote Access– At at time when smart phones can control just about anything and everything you have a world of information available to you at your fingertips. A feature that as a business owner or home owner can prove invaluable when the need arises to check in on things at an non convenient time.

4.  Ability to Zoom without pixelation – Did you know with the technology out today and the ‘ah-mazing’ quality of cameras that have flourished our market. Zooming in on pre-recorded footage has be come the “norm”. You can take an image and see someones face, or maybe even make out that license plate! 

5. Slow Search – You should be able to comb through and locate precise points in your recorded footage in seconds. If it takes you hours to find something then you need to get new software. Choose user-friendly software and get to know it well.

Small Business Security: Why you should take local crime seriously

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It is pertinent to know the crime statistics of your city, in order to detect increases in crime. Commercial burglaries tend to form patterns. A break-in at one store can quickly turn into a string of burglaries at businesses all around the block. Get proactive as soon as your business or a neighbor business is hit, to prevent more break-ins before they occur. Here are some tips from SafeCity on how to work together with other business owners.

1. Meet with the owners or managers in your complex to talk about how burglars got in, how they escaped, what time they arrived, and what they stole. Begin keeping centralized records of all the break-ins in the vicinity of your store.

2. Partner with local law enforcement to keep tabs on area break-ins and arrests.Philadelphia offers a program that will pay UP TO $3,000 for your surveillance system.  Try to stick with one contact at the police department, so that one person will be able to see the big picture of the crimes in your complex and notice patterns and problem areas.

Get proactive as soon as your business or a neighbor business is hit, to prevent more break-ins before they occur.

3. If break-ins have already become a pattern in your area, consider a CCTV system or monitored alarm system to get you covered in the event your their next target.

4. Strengthen your front doors and windows, and consider barring back windows. Lock the fire escapes after closing time to cut off an easy escape route for burglars. Talk with your security company about whether your current lighting and security cameras are sufficient.

After implementing your security strategy, meet with other business owners to find out if it’s working. It may take a few months to notice a change in the patterns, for better or worse.