Using Audio To Limit Your False Alarms

March 14th, 2019



The two senses that human beings rely on the most to get acquainted with their surroundings are sight and sound. One without the other doesn’t provide the same result, and this should be taken into consideration when figuring out your security strategy. Unfortunately, the physical security world hasn’t quite caught on to this age-old piece of knowledge yet, often prioritizing only sight without using any sound at all. 

Including audio in your security has been something of a tricky topic in recent years. Many have concerns regarding the laws and practices surrounding audio in the security industry, as recording audio can be considered unlawful in some areas, but they don’t consider systems designed by professionals in the security field. When audio and visual security technology is designed and implemented by professionals in the field, it becomes an effective and important security tool. 

The Challenges Of Unverified Alarms 

Audio is continuing to gain acceptance in the security world, and this is largely due to the advent of audio analytics for early threat detection. Unverified alarms do require second source verification, and the power of audio provides just that second source to limit the challenges unverified alarms pose. Some of the challenges found with unverified alarms include: 

  • Overworking police – Not only in Omaha, NE, but across the nation police officers are finding it more and more difficult to respond to the plethora of alarm system triggers experienced every day. During the year 2016, the International Association of Chiefs of Police found that 98% of all alarm calls in the United States were false, thus taking time away from the 2% that required true assistance. 
  • Overworked EMS – While police officers around the country are bogged down by false alarm pings, so are EMS and first responders across the country. These first responders could respond to a false alarm and have their time taken away from legitimate emergencies occurring throughout the community. 
  • Customers – In some instances, customers may incur a fine for a false alarm in the form of a bill from the responding agency coming to respond to the false emergency. These customers will then turn to the company in charge of their security system, wondering why the bill is on their table instead of those responsible for installing, manufacturing, and managing their security. This can lead to tension in customer relations between customers and security system providers, with customers often left footing the bill and perhaps deciding to write off their security provider altogether. 

Audio For False Call Limitation 

Secondary source verification can put an end to these false calls and the difficult situations they cause for EMS, police, and the customers they’re responding to. With audio, customers can verify if the alarm was triggered by a true emergency, or if their alarm was tripped due to a fault in the system or accidental triggering. Not only will this limit the resources used on responding to false alarms, but it will improve response times to true emergencies where help is needed the most.