As I talk to multitudes of people about security, I occasionally run into those who’ll say that a monitored security system won’t prevent an intrusion. Actually the last person to say that was a close friend. I think that statement is wonderful, in that it shows that he was trying to think like a criminal in order to protect himself.
First of all, I guess I would have to agree with my friend, since the yard sign and the window decals are really the only portion of the system that is designed to deter the intrusion. The siren is the next line of defense in that it may discourage entry in the case of a glass break detector, or at least prompt a rapid departure once the intruder determines that the police are being dispatched. There are a multitude of other critical benefits that security system monitoring provides though.
Probably the easiest way to describe the value of monitoring is with some of the questions that a monitored security system would answer. I will include some questions that would also be answered when email alerting is added to a modern security system. Adding video surveillance would answer even more questions, but will be saved for a later discussion.
The technology exists today to monitor all of these conditions and allow you to not worry about them. The benefit of monitoring is two fold, first it gets help summoned sooner, and second, you don’t have to wonder if everything is OK.
It is only natural to worry about our families, homes, and businesses when we can’t be there, but electronic monitoring can go along way to reduce the worry.
The Challenge: I believe that almost anthing can be electronically monitored. Try to stump me with your toughest monitoring challenge. I’ll post your question and my attempt to solve. We’ll let a jury of your peers determine whether I’ve solved the challenge, come close, or crashed and burned.
A topic you are going to see covered frequently here is that of “Aging in Place.” There are many organizations that define this phrase, but to me it is the application of a variety of solutions with a goal of helping seniors live longer, happier, and safer lives within their own homes. Home security systems can be extended to provide a great deal of support toward this goal.
Their are several considerations that infuence ones ability to stay at home. Things like wellness and mobility are obvious factors in determining one’s independence, but many adaptations are possible with thoughtful design.
One area that needs to be addressed is making sure that the individual can get the help they need when they need it. There are many different circumstance that can force one to need assistance and a monitoring system should be put in place that addresses as many of these as practical. Regular home visits by trained caregivers is one valuable measure. Modern technology can offer several powerful yet very affordable solutions as well.
Medical pagers that give the ability to summon help are another useful tool. The Life Sentry pager is unique in that a push of a button can connect the user to a certified EMT that can access their situation and dispatch the appropriate help. The advance here is that the conversation can take place right over the pendant which can be worn outdoors or in the shower. The previous versions of such devices required that the individual be able to get all the way back to a centrally located base station in order to communicate with the central station.
In home activity tracking is an exciting new area that allows family members or caregivers to monitor the activity within the home to assess whether a departure from the norm warrants action or at least a phone call. Email alerts can be sent as the individual moves from room to room, opens the medicine cabinet, or leaves the house. This allows their loved ones to have peace of mind that things are normal and to determine when things might not be. The monitoring doesn’t stop there though. It can also alert authorities and family members of fire, carbon monoxide, or intrusion threats.
Video surveillance is another technology that has gained an enormous amount of momentum in the residential market lately. Low prices and remote viewing over the internet and smart phones have made this a popular addition to a home’s electronic security. Again, the value is one of providing the peace of mind that comes with knowing everything is OK.
Another important adaptation that allows individuals to stay at home longer is the removal of barriers to everyday living that may exist within the home. These might be areas that are not wheel chair accessible. I had the pleasure of speaking with experts at Lifewise Renovations at their showroom, where they showed me how various remodelling techniques are helping individuals stay in their homes longer. One of the things that struck me, was that many of these adaptations, while very functional, are practically invisible, so people can implement these universal design concepts at any time.
You can learn more about these concepts or request a consultation at Shield Security Systems.