Choose a Security System for your Business

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Choosing a Security System for your Business

Many businesses used a combination of security measures to create the most appropriate blend of protection for their needs. The choice very much depends upon the nature of the business or the nature of their assets to be protected. They may include the following:

Intruder Alarms

There are a wide range of choices available, from bells-only systems to the more sophisticated range of monitored systems. Below is a brief review of the options, which might help with the amount of terminology that you will encounter when reviewing what systems are available.

Bell-Only (Audible) Alarms

This is generally the most basic option, which is most unlikely to be acceptable to an insurer if you are protecting commercial premises. In simple terms, if an alarm is triggered an audible alarm sounds to alert you, or a neighbour that an intruder has entered (or is trying to enter to enter) the premises.

The system should always be fitted by a certificated installer to the relevant British Standards.

Monitored Systems

It is important that the monitoring centre is recognised by the Police. The system installed may be the same as or similar to a bell -only system, except that when the alarm is activated a signal is relayed through a Digital Communicator to a remote monitored centre via a telephone line. They may confirm that the alarm is not false and, if necessary, they inform the Police

Monitored systems do not guarantee a Police response.

If it is reasonably certain that someone has entered the premises, it will flagged as a priority call. However if a system has had four false alarms in a year, three in England the URN will be revoked by the Police. To be reconnected, evidence that the problem has been resolved must be provided to the Police within three months. 

A unique reference number (URN) which identified the premises must be obtained by the installer from the Police, when the system is installed. To get this number, the installer and the monitoring centre must be registered with a certification body, such as SSAIB.  

Monitored Signalling Systems

These are systems that monitor the “signal path” between the protected premises and the alarm receiving centre that monitors the alarm system. In the event of the signalling path, usually a telephone line, being interrupted (eg, the cutting of the telephone line) in the case of a burglary at or near the protected premises, an alarm activated at the alarm receiving centre and either the Police or keyholder of the premises is informed.

The Police can only be informed if the alarm can be “confirmed”.   

Duel-Path Monitored Signalling Systems

There are several types of duel-path systems, but only some include a digital communicator combined with a GSM system (using mobile phone technology.)

Under normal circumstances alarm signals are sent to the alarm receiving centre by the digital communicator. However, if this is not possible (eg, due to the cable having been cut) the signal is then sent by the GSM system.    Duel-path signalling systems have a great benefit, in that they allow an alarm condition followed by a signalling path fault-or vice versa- to be.

Internet Protocol (IP) Signalling

This option is not new and has been around for some time (although up to now not widely used) is a tried and trusted solution.
Intruder Alarm Systems use Internet Protocol Signalling (IP) to connect to an Alarm monitoring Centre (ARC) via the internet. Depending of the configuration of the local network system alternative signal pathways may be provided to ensure signal continuity.

Intruder Alarm Systems use Internet Protocol Signalling (IP) to connect to an Alarm monitoring Centre (ARC) via the internet. Depending of the configuration of the local network system alternative signal pathways may be provided to ensure signal continuity.

It would be prudent to check with your insurers that they are satisfied with the security and fire alarms being routed this way as to some insurance companies the technology has not been fully established.


Ensuring continual security to your premises during business hours is just as important as when the building is closed There are several access systems for doors, gates, turnstiles to bio-metric options, all controlling access to your business or part of it all to ensure security to your business and staff.

Security Guarding Services

This security service is very effective but can be costly. Either Static Guards or mobile patrols checking the premises on regular intervals, permanent staff or contract guards this sector of the security industry has been subject to increased Government attention and it is vital that your security staff are licenced by the Security Industry Authority (SIA) under the requirements of the Security Act.

For more information on this subject please see SIA website.


The CCTV range has grown over the years and are available to provide surveillance of property and vulnerable areas. Advances in technology and design have enabled a growth of CCTV options and data recording, which can be used in a court of law to provide evidence of criminal activity.

Extensive knowledge of the Human Rights Legislation is required for the correct installation and setting up of CCTV systems especially if the cameras impact upon public space. It is also important that all recording data is processed in line with the Data Protection Act. 

Remote video response centres draw upon a wide range of standards and requirements to give a high degree of cooperation between system installers and monitor centres. The premises occupiers and owners should also has to be involved in operations.

Monitoring centres will confirm that an activation is genuine before contacting the Police.

Remotely monitored CCTV can provide an economic solution, where property protection is required 24 hours a day.

Monitoring Centres

Monitoring centres receive all activations for Fire, Panic and Intruder sector. Activations from monitored intruder alarm systems and fire alarm systems must be routed through an Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) for verification, before being passed to the relevant authorities. 

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