When customers come to us to install security equipment, they generally want to stop burglars from entering their property. Whether securing a home or a business — or both — people usually think of outsiders as the greatest threat to their security. However, at times the biggest danger to our customers’ security comes in a different form. Individuals that you have provided access to enter your home or business often provide a major security threat. After all, these “friends of friends,” employees, or contractors often have keys and alarm codes. Therefore, even your locks and security equipment will not keep them out! In this post, we share some tips to help you with securing against inside jobs.

First, we’ll share some security-system related tips. Since burglar alarms represent the building block of most security plans, this area deserves some attention. Then, we’ll look at how adding cameras to your property can help deter and solve crimes committed by “insiders.” Finally, we’ll also examine the power of keypad-based smart locks. These locks provide a couple of layers of unique security. Now, let’s get started with a look at our security-system related tips.

Security-System Related Best Practices

Security systems, often called “burglar alarms,” provide a couple unique measures of security for any property. For starters, upon activation, these systems produce a blaring siren response. This alerts anyone present to the security breach. Moreover, it also generally gets the perpetrators to flee the premises. Additionally, our monitored burglar alarms also call our central station for help when needed. If necessary, our central station will dispatch the police to your property after receiving this alert. As we mentioned earlier, people that have used your alarm before provide perhaps the biggest risk when it comes to your alarm’s effectiveness. In this section, we’ll look at a few ways that you can help lower this risk. Let’s begin with a focus on proper alarm code management.

Utilizing Proper Alarm Code Management

When residents of a home or employees of a business enter an alarmed building, they generally punch a numerical code into an alarm keypad to disarm the property’s security system. If you have one code for all alarm users, then you’ve greatly decreased your alarm’s effectiveness. Unfortunately, people who may have needed to disarm your security system at one point may come back months or even years later with less-than-pure intentions. If you do not properly manage your alarm codes, these individuals will have no trouble getting past your alarm. Giving different individuals their own codes allows you to delete codes as individuals no longer need access to your property. This can eliminate the chance of an unexpected visit from an old housesitter or contractor down the line.

A hand entering a code on a keypad

If you have multiple individuals using the same alarm code, you could be hurting your security.

Furthermore, many of our customers have monitoring methods that track alarm use. This allows them to view their alarm history, including who arms and disarms the security system, and when. Customers who use just one alarm code greatly lessen the value of this type of monitoring. After all, you cannot accurately track who really arms and disarms the security system if you fail to create different codes for each alarm user. Therefore, adding codes can help you both control and track security system use on your property. Next up, let’s see how our most popular means of alarm monitoring makes code management easier than ever!

The Alarm.com Advantage

When we monitor an alarm, we must create a communication path between your security system and our central station. A couple decades ago, we had to use a customer’s existing phone lines to create this path. However, recent technology upgrades have given us more effective options to monitor our customers’ alarms. Specifically, we can install cellular dialers that communicate over a cell network, rather than through phone lines. This provides us a few advantages. For starters, cell networks create more consistent alarm monitoring. After all, phone lines go down much more frequently than cell towers. Furthermore, burglars often cut a property’s phone lines before breaking in. However, this type of attack does not affect alarm monitoring for our cellular dialer customers.

Additionally, our own interactive cellular dialer powered by Alarm.com comes with other unique security benefits. When we discuss “interactive” monitoring, we’re referring to the fact that our Alarm.com customers can control and communicate with their security systems using a smartphone app. This allows for remote system arming and disarming. It also lets you receive instant text alerts upon system activation, or when you have a status update such as a low sensor battery.

Finally, and most relevant to this post, interactive Alarm.com monitoring provides you with remote code control. You can use a computer or smartphone to add and delete user codes at will. Just as importantly, you can assign user names to codes and receive alerts as different users control your alarm. Of course, this means that if someone with a unique user code comes back for a return visit, you will know immediately. Over the past few years, this has become one our most powerful tools for securing against insisde jobs. Now, let’s look at another important piece of the security “puzzle!”

The Power of Surveillance

We’ve long recommended installing cameras to both commercial and residential customers alike. Following this advice creates two layers of security. For starters, the presence of surveillance makes it less likely that either outsiders or insiders will attempt anything you wouldn’t want them to. In fact, many of our commercial customers intsall cameras with the hope that the mere sight and awareness of cameras will stop any unwanted criminal actions committed by employees. Unsurprisingly, the installation of these cameras often stops the crime in its tracks.

Of course, cameras also give you the ability to watch live and recorded footage whevever you deem necessary. Moreover, we can connect surveillance cameras to your network for remote viewing through a smartphone or computer. Therefore, you can check in on your home or business in real time, and review past footage upon detecting any irregularities at your property as well. Let’s now highlight one more way that you can secure your own application against insider crime.

A Schlage Smart Deabolt being unlocked outside a home.

A smart keypad deadbolt, such as this lock by Schlage, allows for both code-based entry and remote operation through a smart phone.

Key Control Through Smart Locks

Keypad smart locks provide a couple extremely instrumental services in securing against inside jobs. For starters, they help with key control. The keypad on these locks grants access to your property’s doors through unique user codes. Therefore, you do not need to worry about tracking how many keys you’ve given out. Simply create new codes for individuals as needed, and delete these codes as you wish to limit access. This allows you to keep past employees or house sitters — and even anyone they may have given a code out to — out of your business or home after you no longer want them there.

Additionally, the “smart” tag on our smart locks points to an even greater level of security. We install Z-Wave smart locks that work with our Alarm.com customers’ existing security cellular dialer. This allows you to add and delete keypad lock codes remotely and assign names to them, just as you can with alarm codes. Even more impressively, you can also lock and unlock your door remotely using the Alarm.com app as well! This allows you to give one-time access whenever needed without providing a key or a code. The unique features provided by these locks make them one of our most popular and effective forms of security!

Putting it All Together and Securing Against Inside Jobs

We hope that this posts helps you in securing against inside jobs. Furthermore, we encourage you to contact us with any questions you may have. We will happily work with you to secure your property against acquaintances, current and former employees, or anyone else who might have the means to breach your security equipment. Additionally, we also encourage you to take advantage of our free site survey program. We provide free consultations and quotes to both new and existing customers, including both homeowners and business owners alike. No matter what application you wish to secure, we would love to help. Together, we can create a complete security plan to keep both outsiders and insiders at bay, allowing you to feel as safe and secure as possible!