Alarm Management Timeline — 2001-2013

We continue with our industry timeline this week on how major alarm management initiatives have evolved. If you missed last week’s, please refer to SIAC’s preceding blog.

2001 ECV (2-call Verification) Proposed – Post 9-11 the PSLC again challenged the industry to develop additional methods (best practices) that would further reduce dispatches. The industry responded by developing a process called Enhanced Call Verification (ECV) or 2-call verification. This was tested in Boulder, Colorado later that year, and yielded a 61% reduction in dispatches using only a police policy. Today most companies use ECV for at least part of their customer base, however requiring this for all alarm users can still yield up to a 35% reduction. In broader test cases applied by national and regional alarm companies, widespread success was measured ranging from 40% – 60% reductions in calls for service. After a review of the results, the PSLC formally recommended this program be added to the list of “Best Practices” and recommended the IACP pass a resolution supporting the practice. It was adopted at the annual meeting in 2002.
2002 Rutger’s Report – The Rutgers Study examined a decade of information on alarm systems and burglaries in Newark, NJ. This report provided empirical data showing the effectiveness of alarm systems on preventing burglaries and documented that the crimes were not simply migrating to another area of the community. In fact, one conclusion of the report is that the more alarm systems there are in a community, the fewer burglaries will occur.
SIAC – Security Industry Alarm Coalition Created – December 2002. As the relationship between the industry and IACP strengthened and matured, the industry sought a more permanent entity to always be available to interface with law enforcement. The four national North American trade associations agree to form SIAC to represent them and be the “One-Voice” for the entire alarm industry. SIAC is staffed by former police chiefs and alarm industry professionals and provides services to both law enforcement and the industry at no charge.
IACP – Verified Response Position Paper (2002) – After nine years of research and tracking results of “Best Practices,” the PSLC -Alarm Committee decides to issue a position paper on a relatively new approach that a few cities have adopted – “Verified Response.” Chiefs from the committee author the paper based on their experience and results from current public-private PSLC programs on alarms. The paper is unanimously approved by the entire PSLC and sent to the IACP board where it is approved.
2003-10 PSLC Expands Programs – Various initiatives over the years, including IACP resolution on CP-01 Control Panel Standards-2005; letter from IACP President Polisar on ECV implementation-2005; Implementation of Alarm Management Committees through SACOP-2004; UNCC Study on measuring False Alarms/Rates -2010.
2011 IACP/PSLC Updates Position Paper – After an additional nine years of results for a total 18 years of study and best practice implementation, the committee recommends writing a new “White Paper” on alarms that includes all “best practices”. The chiefs on the committee decided to exclude “Verified Response” (non-response to alarms) as an option based on: The model ordinance success rate and acceptance by nine SACOP chapters; the fact that only 18 jurisdictions of the nearly 18,000 have utilized some form of VR in over ten years, and eliminating response to alarms is not considered a solution supported by Community Policing objectives; additionally, recent data from Phoenix and Montgomery County agencies now prove that over 86% of the alarm permit holders have “no dispatches” in a given year and the next 5-8 percent have only one dispatch. Most chiefs see alarm response as a community service that citizens expect and find no justification in making it an option to eliminate response as a recommendation by IACP – thus it was not included.

About justwrite15

Dave's column has run in multiple small town newspapers across the U.S., in Nebraska, Illinois, Pennsylvania and Texas,where Dave has been able to entice personal friends and editors to run his social commentary. His column has also been picked up by It has appeared in newspapers since 1998, and began in response to one of the school shootings so depressingly familiar in America. His commentary has morphed into a weekly offering of humor, insights and advice on how to find sanity in an insane world.
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