February 9, 2023

lunk alarm is the most valuable part of your alarm system for both you and the Alarm Company that has the pleasure of providing you with this service. For the alarm user the peace of mind that comes with knowing that help is on the way when needed is always welcome and often insisted upon. For the alarm dealer, the recurring revenue that comes from this side of the business is what sustains them.

Monitoring firms come in all sizes. The largest are UL (Underwriters Laboratory) listed facilities with Fort Knox like security. These facilities have large backup generators as well as the ability to instantly switch your signals to the closest available station in the case of a natural or man made disaster. There is great stability in doing business with these firms due to the fact that your account will rarely be sold to another company, who would constantly raise your monitoring rates. Small alarm dealers use monitoring agreements as a way of infusing cash into their business as often as needed, To them your account is like stock.

The largest National and International companies are at an advantage because they have a great number of facilities, and are able to provide local monitoring for their clients. Local monitoring is preferred because you are less likely to loose a signal if it is coming over a local phone line. An example of this is as follows. Lets say you live in the central US and your alarm is being monitored on the east coast over an 800 number telephone line. If a storm knocks out the phone lines between you and the monitoring station, how would they receive your signal for help?

The smallest firms could be a couple of people taking turns watching a digital receiver in a home office. These are undesirable because you may not be able to depend on them when needed. Your personal information is also at risk, due to a potential lack of security in this type of facility. All of the advantages of the large well- funded central stations are reversed when your alarm dealer saves money by doing business with these smallest of companies.

Monitoring stations large and small all have the same function. When your alarm is violated it sends a digital signal to the monitoring stations receiver. The receiver takes only a few seconds to decipher where the signal is coming from and what type of response is required. This information is than translated by computers and a dispatch screen is shown to the first available dispatcher. The dispatcher connects to the proper authority and relays your systems request for a response.

On most non- panic situations the monitoring station should call the house before they dispatch to the proper authority. If you answer the phone and give the correct password they should disregard your signal as a user error. If you give the wrong password, the better monitoring stations will say “Thank You” hang up and dispatch for a holdup/ hostage situation. This is yet another great people protector that is built into your monitoring service.

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