What is a central monitoring station?
A central monitoring station is a facility that monitors security and other systems for specific situations like burglaries, robberies, fires and medical emergencies and will make an appropriate response. The key components of a central station are the equipment used to communicate with the alarm system and people in need of assistance, the computerized receiving equipment that logs and prioritizes calls for assistance and the professionally trained staff that responds to each situation.
What qualifications should I look for in a central station?
• UL-listing. A central station that has received a listing from Underwriters Laboratories meets specific requirements in the areas of facility security, training of dispatch personnel and record keeping.
• Redundancy. Does the central station have separate locations that back each other up in the event of an emergency?
• Verification services. Does the central station offer audio and/or video verification services?
Why be monitored?
It's a fact that alarm systems monitored by a qualified central station reduce crime. Homes without security systems are about 3 times more likely to be broken into than homes with security systems. (Actual statistic ranges from 2.2 times to 3.1 times, depending on the value of the home.) Businesses without alarm systems are 4.5 times more likely to be burglarized than commercial locations with electronic security in place. Losses due to burglary average $400 less in residences with security systems than for a residence without security systems. (Source: Simon Hakim, Temple University, 215-204-7476)
A central station acts as a silent guardian, watching over your business, home, and loved ones 24/7/365. By having a monitored system, Digital Security and Electronics' monitoring station can take immediate action to verify and dispatch help in emergency conditions transmitted by your system.
What is verification and why is it important?
Professional central stations will usually make an attempt to verify alarm or other emergency signals before taking action. Exceptions are holdup, duress or other situations where an attempt to verify the authenticity of an alarm activation could potentially put a victim at greater risk. The most basic form of verification entails the dispatcher calling the residence or business after receiving an alarm signal to confirm authenticity. Other more elaborate methods of verification are two-way audio and video verification.
By confirming alarm signals, unnecessary dispatches of the authorities are avoided, saving the alarm owner fines and embarrassment, as well as helping to ensure that the right type of emergency help is dispatched.
Will my alarm signal go directly to the police? If not, how come?
Many signals received from alarm systems do not require emergency response. Occasionally, users trip alarm systems accidentally. Also, alarm systems often report other signals (such as maintenance requirements) that public authorities are not in a position to respond to. If all of these signals went directly to the authorities, without first verifying an actual emergency, an unnecessary strain would be placed on public resources. A professional central station maintains specific instructions for each client regarding how to respond in a particular situation, thereby allowing a customized service that public authorities are not prepared to provide.
How else can I benefit from having a monitored security system?
Most insurance companies have long recognized the deterrent value of a security system. That’s why they usually offer discounts of up to 20 percent off your homeowner’s or business insurance premiums when you have a monitored security system installed in your home or business. In many areas, insurance companies require either burglary or fire alarm systems as a prerequisite for insuring customers.
What other devices can be monitored by digital Security? Smoke Beams
Carbon Monoxide detectors
Low temperature sensors
High temperature sensors
Interior and exterior cameras
Gas line detectors
Wireless key remotes
Glass break detectors Desire something monitored that is not on the list? Please contact us and inquire.
What is the advantage of having a monitored smoke detector?
Having a monitored smoke detector at your premise ensures that the fire department will be contacted if you have a fire emergency. A good photoelectric smoke detector will detect smoke particles caused by even a slow smoldering fire. If you are not at home, and do not have a monitoring service, odds are no one will hear your smoke alarm when you have a fire condition! Therefore it is important that someone monitor this device 24 hours a day! With this service, your smoke detector is continuously monitored through a 24 hour zone, even when your alarm system is not armed!
What happens if my phone line is cut or is out of service?
Many alarm companies fail to provide adequate information regarding phone line cuts. There are various methods of delivering your vital emergency information in the event of an alarm. We strongly recommends the use of Honeywell’s GSM family of Digital Cellular Alarm Transmitters, a backup radio system that is easy to install and will work virtually anywhere in the United States.
What if my electricity service is down? The system we offer has a backup battery system as standard package. Depending on the number of devices installed, the backup battery will sound the alarm and dial the Central station in the event of an alarm. We/You can even monitor your business or home for a/c failure and restore.
Can I use a security system even if I have a pet?
Yes. Although pets can be a challenge for security systems, particularly if they have free access to protected area or weigh over 100 pounds, specially adapted motion detectors are available at an additional cost. Digital Security specialists will be happy to discuss this option with you.
Is the information in my file up to date? It is very important to notify us of any changes that could affect the operation of your security system. For your security, you should immediately notify Digital Security if you:
Hire or add an employee to the user list of your alarm system
Terminate or remove an employee from the user and or call list of your alarm system
Change your home or work phone number
Make changes to your emergency contact list
Add a new user (babysitter, housekeeper, roommate, etc)
Get a pet (which could require the addition of a special motion detector for pets
You must also inform us of any renovations that could interfere with the operation of your security system. If your telephone service provider needs to work on your phone line, please test your security system after their technician leaves. Please call the monitoring center to let them know you're testing.
To notify us of a change in your file, call 805.987.4246.
How do I avoid paying a fee for having the police respond to a false alarm?
Many municipalities now charge fees when police are dispatched to respond to false alarms. By-laws vary from one municipality to another.
Check with your municipality to find out about current alarm regulations.
Be sure that all system users have a good understanding of how to operate the system.
Avoid leaving objects in the home or business that could move or blow about and set off an alarm (balloon etc.).
Pets can be given free reign of the house as long as proper motion detectors are in place.
Digital Security offers a Guard Response Service (available in most regions). When an alarm is triggered, Digital Security will dispatch a uniformed guard to the premise to assess the situation and take the necessary measures.
Digital Security offers Video Verification Service (available in most regions). When an alarm is triggered, Digital Security's central station operators will view the camera images remotely, assess the situation, and take the proper remedial action including high-priority police dispatch where applicable.
I just got VoIP Telephone Service - What effect will it have on my alarm system? If you subscribe to Voice over IP (VoIP) with the intention of replacing your present phone service, the transmission of alarms between your establishment and the monitoring center could be disrupted. It is also possible to purchase your Voice over IP (VoIP) conversion equipment directly from other manufacturers via Internet. In such cases, it is very often up to you to configure and connect the device. Make sure that the device is compatible with your security system. If clear instructions pertaining to security systems are not provided by these suppliers, along with the assurance that communications protocols are respected, Digital Security recommends you do business with professionals of the trade.
I just got DSL, will that interfere with my alarm system? Yes, your alarm system is connected to your phone line which allows the alarm panel to call the proper authorities in case of an emergency. The alarm will need a DSL filter to work properly. Please call the service department to order a DSL filter and to set up and appointment to install the filter.
Is Digital Security a member of the local alarm association? Digital Security is a member of the Ventura County Alarm Association (VCAA) and the National Burglar and Fire Alarm Association.
Does Digital Security have all applicable municipal/state licenses? Digital Security and Electronics, Inc. is required to carry all applicable licenses, including a State Contractors License (C-10 460023 ) and an Alarm Company Operators License [ACO1717]
Where can I find out more information about Digital Security and Electronics? Please feel free to continue to browse the Digital Security and Electronics website. There are several products and services as well as other links to provide you with information to help you make an informed decision. Or, call 805.987.4246 to speak with a Digital Security customer service representative.