When it comes to offering alarm monitoring services, providing backup monitoring options is paramount. Anything can happen, and when a line of communication is broken, it’s important to have another available. Security Alliance uses four methods to communicate with the alarm systems we monitor: phone, cellular, internet, and radio.
The Most Common Alarm Backup Methods
Cellular communicators are by far the most common form of backup communication being used at our alarm monitoring station. Most customers have a primary wired connection through a phone line or internet line and use a battery powered cellular device as a backup mode of communication. Cellular transmitters last about 48 hours in a power outage and can communicate with the central monitoring station if phone lines go down or get cut.
How Many Backups Monitoring Sources Do I Need?
For the majority of the alarm systems we monitor, a cellular communicator is all the backup protection needed. Of the four methods of communication, any of these can serve as the primary communicator and any combination can serve as the backup. In regards to the number of backups needed, it depends. For an especially high-risk target like a government building, the home of a CEO or a bank, we might recommend considering a combination of backup options, including radio monitoring.
Backup Radio Monitored Alarm Systems
Equipment anyone can purchase online has the ability to disrupt cellular communicators and phone and internet lines are vulnerable to being cut, but it is nearly impossible to block an emergency signal sent by radio from the roof of a building. Security Alliance is one of the few central monitoring stations in Central Virginia with the ability to monitor an alarm system by radio. This is a great last line defense in the event of a wide-spread emergency scenario or disaster when phone lines and cellular communication could potentially down.
Testing Backup Communications
Having backup communication lines tested regularly is vital. We always recommend setting alarm customers up on a schedule to test all aspects of a system and especially the backup communications. The amount of testing depends largely on the complexity of the system and risk level associated with what is being protected. Higher target facilities may warrant more regular testing than a simple residential abode. The thing about alarm systems is that you hope to never need one, but you need it to work perfectly if you ever do.
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