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Posted on May 4, 2014 by OnGuard
Categories: General
1. Turn it on!
 
Use it! If it’s not armed, it’s not much use. An important element is that it’s easy to use and there isn’t a good reason why it should be easy.  Make sure you have a keypad near your main entry door. Another good spot is the master bedroom. Other popular locations include the Front door and if you have a dog, the door you use to let him out is a good spot. If it’s not accessible to run a wire, no worries because wireless keypads are available. Or you can use a remote or telephone to arm / disarm the system. The bottom line is getting in the habit or turning on each night and whenever you go away.
 
2.  Put up and check alarm warning stickers and signs
 
If you have a system, it is a strong deterrent to have fresh, clean alarm warning stickers and yard sign. If you have existing ones that are looking faded and old, call your current provider and request new decals and signs. If you already have, or switch to providers, make sure they are positioned properly and the old ones are removed and replaced with new.
 
3. Get the most out of it
 
Most manufactures have manuals on-line.  This site  www.alarmguides.com has most of them.  Or call your alarm company and have them send someone out to do a demonstration for you.
 
4.  Get it monitored
 
If it not monitored, just have a local siren, you are missing a lot. Such as:
A)     Emergency response from Police, Fire and Medical.
B)     Your notification of an alarm or trouble conditions while away.
C)     Hostage code.
D)     Homeowner’s insurance discount up to 20%.
 
5. Test it!
 
1st call your central monitoring station and put on test if monitored. I recommend you do it when the times change, so at least twice a year or more often if desired. Pay attention to error codes or messages on the keypad. Refer to the user manual or customer service if in doubt.  Always test the alarm after you have had service personnel in the home, particularly your phone or cable provider.
 
6. Check batteries
 
If you have wireless sensors and need replacement batteries, a place I recommend is Fry’s Electronics (96th/I69) because they have a great selection and low prices. Last I checked, they had 2 – 3v lithium batteries for about $ 3.00. Other good places include Batteries Plus (116th/Rangeline -Westfield), 465/Pendleton Pike and 46/Lafayette).
The main battery typically last 10-15 years. The above locations work for them as well.
 
7. Clean the smokes
 
Check the age of your smoke sensors. Most manufactures recommend you replace them every 10-12 years.  The yellower they are, the older. We use the photoelectric type with combo heat sensor. On the other hand, if you have heat sensors…the normally last until they are needed.  A good idea is to spray some of the canned air stuff used to clean computer keyboards into the smoke chambers a couple times a year to clean them out and/or use a vacuum cleaner.  It is not a bad idea to call the central station first to put it on test to make sure you don’t have a false dispatch of the fire dept while cleaning.
 
8. Shop around
 
You might be pleasantly surprised what kind of rate you can find. Some alarm companies have a bad habit of regular raising rates.  Be extremely cautious about companies that may come door knocking. Check there credentials, location of office (make sure local service), location of monitoring (UL Certification is recommended), Angie’s List
 
9. Check out new technology
 
There are some great newer features that are more affordable than ever. Such as cellular monitoring which is great for those who would like the peace of mind of knowing if the landline goes down, there is a back-up method for the system to communicate to the monitoring station. More companies are connecting alarms to the internet for remote control from a computer and smart phones. Alarm messaging is an easy and fast way to get the word out via text and email.  Another good one is 2 way voice which allows the central station operator to hear and speak within the premise.
 
10.  Be careful when remodeling
 
Many times decent systems get butchered in the remodeling process. Particularly when replacing old windows with new. Sometimes it is inevitable the sensor will have to get replaced with new, sometimes not. Contact your alarm company before the saws and crow bars come out.
Posted on May 4, 2014 by OnGuard
Categories: General
Over the past 30 years of full time occupation in the electronic security profession, I have seen my share of wrongs and rights. Most folk I come across feel things are getting worse rather than better. One only needs to watch the nightly news for 5 minutes. Home invasions, stabbings, break-in, hold-ups, sexual, murders, and physical assaults, on and on – many at an all-time high. What’s a prudent person to do?
 
Practice the 5 P’s…as my father would often spout (often adding a 6th  P which I shall not repeat).
 
1) Prior  2) Planning  3) Prevents  4) Poor  5) Performance
 
We can’t do everything but we are fools if we do nothing.  One great thing about technology (unlike our bodies) is that it generally gets better and cheaper over time. This is certainly the case in electronic security. It’s simpler and affordable than ever while much better performance.  If you can use a DVD or Facebook, our stuff will be a piece of cake when we are through.
 
Video Surveillance helps us see and hear better, 24/7 – as it never sleeps or goes off duty. We are often placing cameras to cover the driveway, front door, back yard and beyond. They are handy for seeing who is at the front door without having to get up or be seen inside the home. It great for monitoring help around the house. Did the UPS driver slam down that package? Or who took it off the porch? Or what happened with so and so? A great thing is the DVR (Digital Video Recorder) has a tremendous memory built-in. It ‘is what it is’ as ‘Ignorance is bliss’ only to a certain extent.
Modern alarms are wireless, more reliable AND affordable than ever. We can easily incorporate lights, locks, video, garage door control and so much more. And it’s generally easy to include medical alerts, fire, carbon monoxide, water detector so forth. It’s great to be ‘in the know’ weather you home or away.
 
Of course they are not fool proof, so it’s always a good to idea to have a back-up plan like quality insurance and a home inventory to protect the replaceable.  Like the old saying, ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’.  I hope you found some value here. If you wish to schedule a free, no obligation security analysis, recommendation and perhaps a quote, let us know by calling 317.572.5777.
Posted on May 4, 2014 by OnGuard
Categories: General
Tangible
 1. Prevent (make unattractive to intruders, assets hidden to thieves) –
a) signs
b) fences
c) locks
d) lighting
e) crime prevention techniques and strategies deployed
 
2. Alert (pre-alarm, low level notification)
a) drive alert
b) motion lights
d) door chime
e) video surveillance
 
3. Alarm (high level notification) –
a) perimeter
b) interior
c) manual
e) guard / person
f) notify
 
4. Defend (imminent threat must be neutralized or eliminated) –
a) self protection
b) safe room
c) police
d) guard
e) other
 
5. Capture – (apprehend, prosecute, incarcerate)
a) police
b) private
b) video
 
6. Restore –  (recover / replace assets and peace where possible)
a) insurance
b) police
c) contractor
d) counselor
 
Untangible
1. Prevent – legal, financial, ID
2. Alert – credit, financial
3. Capture – police, legal, PI
4. Restore – insurance, ID, credit
Posted on May 4, 2014 by OnGuard
Categories: General
Increased burglaries are plaguing Northern Marion County and increasing in Hamilton County at a steep rate.
I clearly recall numerous people I have talked to in the past few months who have recently been broken into. There are two types of  people I typically come across. Those desiring to prevent a problem and those trying to fix one. Just last week, I was on north Broadripple area avenue. This close knit neighborhood has been swarmed with burglaries of late. The homeowner just shared with me the other day in no less than 8 of her neighbors have been broken into the past year. It is a problem all across town. And out of town too.
 
The typical M.O. is to knock on the door, if no answer, kick in the front door or slide around the back and have their way on a rear door or window. Often the intruders play themselves off a lost soul in the need of direction if conversed with. Never ignore someone at your front door. Yet, be careful to whom you open up your door to. Sound like a catch 22? In a real way it is. I recommend a chain or the type of lock often seen in hotel rooms, a clasp type door guard. So you can speak and see the person without opening it wide open. Peepholes and video cameras help too. If you don’t feel like opening the door, flash on lights, tell them ‘no thanks’ through a window, or whatever. Just don’t ignore them.
 
In the Broadripple area, the intruders snagged some electronics and got away from this particular house. Just a few streets over, a couple of burglars were about to bust in a rear door with a white, stolen van parked out front. Fortunately, a watchful neighbor saw it, yelled at them, called 911 and they were apprehended. Unfortunately, they could only be charged with trespassing and the van had been stolen some time ago, so its not likely they will be charged. Likely, they will be back at it in no time. Perhaps a little wiser but still dumb.
 
The Star recently reported, “By November, MarionCounty had a nearly 10 percent increase in burglaries from last year, according to the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.
 
But the area’s greatest increases were in Hamilton County, where burglary reports have climbed 29 percent in Carmel, 23 percent in Fishers and 17 percent in Noblesville, according to each Police Department.
 
The Indianapolis Northside and Northwestside — which are closest to Hamilton County — followed with 16 percent and 15 percent increases in residential burglaries, respectively.
 
Some experts say the ailing economy and dramatic suburban growth contribute to making those communities inviting targets.’
 
Burglaries have been increasing steadily in metro Indianapolis and similar-sized areas during the past several years. From 2004 to 2006, burglaries increased 8 percent in Indianapolis, 10 percent in Louisville, Ky., and 8 percent in Cincinnati, according to the latest FBI statistics.
 
IMPD North District Maj. David Allender is not convinced that the bad economy is to blame for the increases.
 
“I’m seeing a lot of younger kids being arrested and not a lot of people who have lost their jobs recently and are desperate,” Allender said. “Maybe in a few months, we will see the economy’s impact. But now we are seeing a loose-knit group of young people who often do it for a thrill.”
 
So what is concerned person to do? Call me. I will be happy to perform a complete security survey and make recommendations that may or may not include an alarm. I am closely connected with quality locksmiths, carpenters, glass block, and other contractors who can help. The good news is there are many things that a free or cheap.
 
 
Tips to avoid home burglaries
 
• Doors should be visible from the street. Remove obstructions or hiding places for criminals.
• Light doorways and walkways.
• Always lock doors, even when home.
• Install a 180-degree peephole in the door.
• Don’t hide keys outside.
• While having your car serviced, remove house keys from the key chain.
• Stop mail and newspaper delivery when you are away.
• Install an alarm system that will detect entry and notify police.
• Have your lawn mowed and snow shoveled when away.
• Always close garage doors at night.
• Never answer a door without checking who is there, and never let a stranger inside.
 
Sources: Indianapolis Metropolitan Police, Fishers Police departments
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OnGuard Security Solutions

6330 E 75th St Suite 120
 Indianapolis, IN 46250
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 Sunday: Closed
6330 East 75th Street., Suite 120 Indianapolis, IN 46250