Monitored or not monitored, that is the question. The answer, however, really depends on your precise needs. Before we go into detail about how Police monitoring works, let's answer a couple of common questions.
"Will my system be monitored by the Police?"
In a word, no. Your system is monitored by an Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) who have access to the Police via a designated phone line. The Police will respond to your alarm, but aren't themselves monitoring it.
"Is it really important to have it monitored?"
Getting a top security system installed is a great way to secure your home, family and possessions but having it monitored by an alarm receiving centre is so much better.
Why? Well, your monitored systems will never be ignored! Whereas audible-only systems rely on somebody hearing the alarm and then acting on it for the system to be any use beyond scaring a burglar off. If nobody is around to hear your alarm, or everyone ignores it, you may as well not have one...
To help you make up your mind, ask yourself these two questions:
- "What do I do when I hear a burglar alarm going off in my neighbourhood?"
- "Can I guarantee somebody will be alerted and act when my alarm goes off?"
Your answers should help you decide if you need a monitored alarm or not.
"So monitored alarms are more secure because they are never ignored, but how do they work?"
There is more than one type of monitored alarm, so we've created a neat little graphic to show how your system could work using the one of the most common set-ups with Police response:
Explaining the Monitored Alarm System
First off, your alarm must have two sensors triggered to activate – this lowers false alarm rates which helps you retain your Police response. When activated, your system will contact the ARC in one of three ways:
- Phone line
- Internet Connection
- SIM Card
Depending on the amount of data you need to transmit, your installer will choose the correct signaling method. For example, broadband will send CCTV images due to the large amount of data sent. It's important to get this right or you could end up with an unsuitable connection.
The alert sends the ARC details about your system so they can call you, the Police or your keyholders as appropriate. If they suspect an intruder is in your home they will contact the Police.
Will I receive Police response without a monitored alarm system?
You can only get automatic Police response if you fulfil certain criteria, which you can read about here. Although anyone can have a monitored alarm system, an automatic Police response is a privilege.
Whether you want Police response or not, a monitored alarm is never ignored. This means your home alarm system or commercial security system is being watched over by experienced professionals 24/7, whether you're asleep, at work or on holiday. Now that's peace of mind.
The Police or your keyholders can then attend your premises and take the required action - whether that's getting the burglar arrested or just resetting the alarm.
Just to reiterate, there's no such thing as a Police monitored alarm, the monitoring is done by the Alarm Receiving Centre, so your system is really a monitored alarm with Police response. The decision you have to make is whether you're confident that your alarm will be heard and acted upon if it does go off or if you don't want to leave it to chance.
Should I Get A Monitored Alarm System?
Well, if you haven't made up your mind already, you can find out more about monitored alarms here.
Otherwise, it's time to weigh up the benefits that a monitored system can provide for you:
- Your alarm is never ignored
- You can get Police response (if your system meets the relevant requirements)
- Peace of mind
Whether you choose to get a monitored alarm or not, finding an accredited company for the job is vital. Professionally installed and maintained systems last longer, work properly and provide you with assured protection.
Accredited monitoring services are favoured by the police for their professionalism and reducing the number of false call outs.
Make it your mission to find the right professional installer and you'll get the best security system possible - monitored or otherwise.
Click the image below to find out why Blake's is the best choice for your security system.