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Weak Points in Commercial Alarm and Security Systems

The Worst Weak Points in Today’s Commercial Alarm and Security Systems

The last years have been an excellent period of security technology and the growth of modern alarm systems in the commercial area. More businesses than ever are aware of the benefits that updated systems and new alarms can provide – but there’s still plenty of growth potential for companies that haven’t made needed updates. Here are the common weak points we’re still seeing in commercial systems, and why your clients should know about them.

Security Cam Video Quality

Businesses that haven’t thought about replacing their security cams since installation may be surprised at just how many benefits come with today’s improved video quality. Cameras that are 10 years old or more may suffer from poor video quality that makes it difficult to make out key details in an incident – there is no magical enhance button on this footage that can make things clear. Even cameras that are just several years old may be missing key features like today’s excellent night vision capabilities, or options beyond 1080p like 2K or 4K, which is a smart choice for cams that are watching a wide area and need as many pixels of information as they can get.

Poor Positioning of Cams

Security cams should be positioned based on the experience of the installer and the specific needs of the business client – this is a fairly simple task for cams that are supposed to be watching a corridor, access point, shipping yard, etc. But positioning can change over time, especially for outdoor cams that may be buffeted by wind and debris. It’s not surprising for some cams to lose their original positioning after a few years and start falling into poor angles. Dust can also accumulate on lenses and will need to be cleaned off.

This is a reason to support arranging a scheduled maintenance program for security systems. It may also be time for the business to consider sturdy new cameras in some spots.

Internal Access Systems

While many businesses understand that cams and alarms are needed for basic perimeter protection, internal access can still get sloppy. Too many companies ignore any internal access measures, so that once a person has entered a building, they can go pretty much anywhere without being physically stopped at an access point. That can make it much easier to steal valuables or sensitive information. Security locks and security door installations at the right points are important upgrades: Security card access remains popular, although fobs and app-based access are also becoming more common.

Local Storage Options

How is a business managing local storage for security video? This is another area where businesses may have fallen behind or run into trouble without knowing. For example, some businesses may depend on local storage that uses SD cards, but the SD cards fill up too quickly and the company doesn’t have a storage management system to deal with it – so the cams can’t actually save any important information. Others may send video to a DVR system, which can also fill too quickly, or may not be compatible with other computers for video analysis.

If a company is running into these problems, it’s time to plan out a new storage plan with local storage and, if necessary, cloud storage options that will work over time.

Lack of Remote Monitoring

“Remote monitoring” conjures up pictures of guards watching security film, but for modern security and alarm systems, it also means that the business owner should be connected to the security system. If a fire alarm goes off, or a security cam picks up unexpected movement on off-hours, the owners should be able to get alerts if they want. That includes being able to see immediate live footage from a cam right on their phone, and options to contact the authorities if necessary. Owners that aren’t informed through this kind of remote monitoring are inviting extra risks, and that’s never a good idea.

The Workplace Safe

It may seem strange, but while workplace safes are made to hold cash and important documents, we’re still seeing some poor practices in this area. That includes safes that aren’t fireproof, safes that are too easy to lift and move out of the business, safes that don’t have drop-in options for employees, and more. Installers who handle safes should always take time to find out what a business needs and make a recommendation for improvement.

False Alarm Triggers

False alarms for fire or security aren’t just annoying, they can also lead to expensive fines and be problematic for a business. Some businesses may have even shut off alarm or monitoring options just to get rid of false alarms. Upgrading to a modern alarm system can cut down on false alarms – this is still an area we’re seeing lots of growth in as business owners are interested in new solutions.

Final Note on Commercial Security

Don’t underestimate the effectiveness of offering your own security audit. Many business owners aren’t sure what they want, or what state their security system is in. One of the best starting places is offering a complete security audit of their technology and the premises to explain where weak points are and why they pose serious issues. You can also offer these audits as part of a free quote process to help convince clients of their value.

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