Signalling methods have been employed with intruder or burglary alarms for many decades starting with sounders. Remote signalling actually started with sounders that had their own power source to “ring the bell”. The sounder is activated when the alarm system’s connecting cable is cut or the alarm sustem deliberately did something similar when it went into an alarm state as a way of sounding the remote sounder. We now call this the “Self-Actuating” sounder.
Remote signalling methods gradually improved from a battery in the alarm system holding off an alarm sounder at the monitoring centre. The telephone networks provided access to remote locations and already used audible tone signalling methods, so ways were developed to use these to convey alarm messages over ordinary telephone lines. From a security perspective, these methods where quick to signal an alarm but not as reliable as insurance companies would like. Telephone lines can be cut and methods are needed to confirm that the communication path is available when it is needed.
Monitoring the availability of the communication path is a major element in the security features needed for Security Monitoring and this is normally expressed as a Reporting Time – the delay before a communications path failure is identified. Authentication of the source of the message is another key feature to avoid device substitution and message replay. Encryption has become very important in all communications today and has a role to play in alarm signaling too.
Each of these elements are addressed by Terrier’s Security Monitoring products alonside reliability. Burglary risk management has moved towards dual-path alarm signalling in recent times recognising that signalling paths do fail and this can be due to non-criminal reasons like network maintenance. Terrier’s dual-path communicators use fixed line networks as a Primary signalling path. This can be ADSL or leased line connections to the Internet or private business networks linking an organisation’s buildings and offices or a combination of these. Our dual-path communicators use mobile data networks to provide the Seondary signalling path and we also supply Single-Path communicators using either Fixed networks or mobile data.
Development of Terrier’s Security Monitoring products has evolved solutions for many of the features used with intruder alarms like Upload/Download to better manage installed systems. At the same time the resilience of the products to manage network issues in a fast-changing environment means that products have become increasingly reliable. With the SPT4 product range which was introduced in early 2013, there was a major step forward when we made the mobile data signalling path (which uses GPRS) direclty similar to the Fixed network connection in being “Always On”. This has had spin-offs for the development of Safety Monitoring, Industrial Monitoring and for the Emergency Telephone appplications.
For detailed information about how Terrier manages the risks of Security Monitoring, please contact us.