Has your company’s alarm system been set up correctly?

Has every alarm in your security system been “channel-assigned”? If not, your site may be at serious risk.


Why is this? Channel assignment is a way of configuring alarms to help security teams identify the location and threat level of an alarm incident. It also makes it easy for them to distinguish between false alarms and real threats.Even so, many systems integrators do not assign alarms to specific channels when they configure a security system, either because do not consider it to be important or because they are not sufficiently familiar with their client's business operations.


However, if security teams are unable to separate false alarms and real threats, the consequences for your business can be serious. If police are called multiple times due to false alarms, they can downgrade the priority of your site. Downgraded police response priority level puts your site at serious risk if there is an actual security threat. It can also affect compliance with company insurance policies, increasing the potential for damaging losses.

A major vulnerability, easily solved

Assigning alarms to separate "channels" is an effective way to avoid this situation and does not involve any significant cost. So how does it work? The diagram below shows an example of how alarms can be assigned to different channels in a retail store. The diagram shows four channels in total: the cash room, the point of sale area, other interior areas in the store and the site perimeter. When an alarm is triggered, the security team is easily able to identify the affected area. If the alarm system is integrated with the surveillance system, they can also view a video feed of the area to determine the correct response.

Fewer false alarms and more effective incident response

As we can see, assigning alarms to separate channels provides security teams with much more information than a general alarm notification. It also allows staff to make better decisions when dealing with security incidents and can help avoid unnecessary calls to your local police force because of a false alarm.


So are your alarms all channel-assigned? If the answer is no, you might want to begin reconfiguring your alarm system straight away.

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