Burglar alarms are pretty standard in modern homes, and they have the highest success rate in detecting and deterring burglary attempts.
However, what exactly happens when an alarm gets triggered?
Here are 7 things that happen when a ring alarm gets triggered:
- A time delay countdown starts.
- The security provider gets contacted.
- The police are alerted.
- Police patrol squads are deployed to investigate.
- The homeowner gives a statement and answers questions.
- Gathering evidence.
- Alerting insurance providers and seeking legal help.
Once you get a smart home security system installed at home, it’s vital to understand its ins and outs and the events that follow a triggered ring alarm.
This article will cover all of it in chronological order—so, let’s get started.
1. A Time Delay Countdown Starts
You can think of the ring alarm as the first piece of a pretty large domino setup.
A chain reaction begins as soon as it’s triggered, starting from a time delay countdown in your alarm system.
This delay allows homeowners to disarm the alarm by putting in their security code.
If the homeowner disarms it within this time delay, none of the following events occur as the case is closed.
It happens in most instances of false alarms where the homeowner realizes it and disarms it in time.
2. The Security Provider Gets Contacted
The system notifies your security providers if the alarm doesn’t get disarmed in the time delay period.
From there, things get real — as you can imagine, and the process of addressing a ring alarm officially begins.
Sometimes, your security provider gets notified first or simultaneously with the police, leading us to the next step.
3. The Police Are Alerted
Besides the police, your home security providers will also get notified automatically. They’ll get in touch with you via your verified contact details.
During this communication, you’re expected to share your knowledge of what triggered the alarm and the current situation status.
4. Police Patrol Squads Are Deployed To Investigate
The police respond quickly to deal with private security ring alarms.
More so if you’ve enabled video monitoring streaming directly to your local police station.
As you’re on the phone with your security providers, the police deploy patrol vehicles to investigate the scene.
5. The Homeowner Gives a Statement and Answers Questions
Audible ring alarms can scare away burglars before they even get a chance to get in.
In fact, according to the International Review of Law and Economics, 74.3 percent of incomplete attempted burglaries can be accredited to the ring alarm sound.
Chances are, the intruders won’t be there by the time the patrol squad gets there.
In that case, they’ll talk to the homeowner and ask questions, seeking an initial statement.
In the case of a false alarm, you’ll also be asked about the reasons or an explanation.
6. The Homeowner Gathers Evidence
From there, the homeowner gathers as much evidence as they can.
Some sources include break-in logs, CCTV recordings, and intel from your security company.
You can also seek video monitoring streams from the cameras on your street or your neighbors.
All of that evidence gets handed over to the police.
7. Alert Insurance Providers and Seek Legal Help
All that’s left for you to do at this point is to take care of the post-event formalities.
These include getting in touch with your home insurance providers.
It’s also best to seek legal help to deal with the insurance process in the best and efficient way possible.
Learn From the Incident and Reinforce Your Security Systems
Here’s a tip!
Just like you generally learn from your mistakes and evolve over time, you should do the same with your home security.
Using the evidence you gather, understand how the burglars broke in, and see which security areas could use an upgrade.
It could be better lighting, smart locks, or more advanced motion sensors.
After all, when it comes to the safety of your home and loved ones, there’s no room for compromises!
The 5 Common False Alarms Causes
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 94 to 98 percent of police alarm calls are false triggers.
Let’s look at some of their most common causes.
Mistakes From Homeowners
Home security systems are designed to be simple, but there’s always a learning curve when people first install them.
Due to a lack of understanding of how everything works, homeowners can often trigger the alarm on accident.
That’s why it’s important to familiarize yourself with your security system.
The security system must be installed according to the security provider’s recommendations.
In some cases, the detectors and sensors in the security hardware might not be appropriately aligned during installations.
This potentially leads to false alarms.
If you’re not too tech-savvy, it’s best to get your security providers to install everything for you.
Pets like to move around the house, and if they stumble across a motion sensor or movement detector, they’ll trigger a false alarm.
To avoid this problem, you should get pet-friendly sensors if you’ve got a furry family member.
False alarms can be a hassle, so it’s best to have the right system in place.
Regardless of how high-quality your security systems are, they can always run into technical issues.
In some cases, ring alarms can be activated without an external trigger due to problems with certain equipment parts.
During the installation process, ensure that all the parts are working properly.
Wireless security systems run on batteries, and they deplete with time.
You must replace batteries regularly to avoid running into performance lapses or other issues such as false alarms.
Even in wired systems, inconsistencies in power delivery can trigger a false ring alarm.
The 3 Best Ways To Reduce False Alarms
Police on-duty resources are limited, and a 94 to 98 percent rate of fake police alarm calls is way too high.
According to a New York Times article, addressing this false alarm issue could free resources equal to 35,000 U.S. police officers.
Visual Verification Before Deployment
False alarms cannot be completely eliminated, but authorities could respond to them in a way that doesn’t waste police resources.
For instance, security systems can stream video monitoring feeds to their local police station.
This way, they can visually verify an intrusion attempt before deploying patrol squads.
Appropriate Security System Training for Homeowners
All authorized family members should fully understand how a security system works when it’s installed.
This can be achieved through a comprehensive training schedule from your security providers.
Some critical areas to cover in training can be providing awareness on passwords.
How to cancel or disarm accidental alarms within the time delay is another.
Security providers can also start the homeowners with an initial familiarization period where alarm signals won’t reach authorities.
Instead, false alarms that occur due to a lack of experience on the house members’ part won’t alert the police.
That way, once the training period ends, there would be much fewer false alarms triggered due to human error.
Two-Way Communication Feature
A two-way communication feature could allow the dispatcher to be audibly present with the homeowner when an alarm gets triggered.
That way, the homeowner can communicate to the dispatcher whether or not they need to reach out to authorities.
BONUS: Learn From Every False Alarm Instance
Just like we previously mentioned, learn from every false alarm incident. This time, learn from unfortunate events.
Every time a false alarm occurs, investigate the cause and take measures to keep it from triggering the alarm again.
You might also wonder: How to fix a Ring doorbell that won’t stop ringing?