Man enters business wearing face mask during COVID-19 pnademic

Reopening Your Business During the Pandemic

Reopening Your Business? Check Your Security.

Idling business owners are still awaiting the opportunity to reopen, both here in New England and across most of the country. When these businesses finally come back online, cash and inventory will be flowing again — enticing potential burglars.Businessman with mask is going to work during COVID-19 pandemic

Given all the other challenges businesses face, besides the lost time and revenue, protecting future revenue should be a priority. Now is a good time to think through the safety and security processes involved in ramping back up your business’ physical location. 

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Need a Business Security System Provider? A Few Tips

Are you a New England business owner looking to protect your operation with an electronic security solution? If so, you will save yourself time, money and potential loss by doing due diligence in your search upfront. 

You’ll need to evaluate your specific needs first. Do you want an electronic alarm with high resolution camera surveillance? Perhaps you also need  24/7 monitoring service? No matter what solution you choose, you need to select a reliable security vendor/service provider.

Why Security Systems Are Important

It’s wonderful when integrated security systems work as intended and limit losses for a business. According to a local news story in Brockton, Massachusetts, a triggered alarm in a seafood store led police to apprehend a suspect on the premises. When officers arrived at the scene, “they encountered a man wearing a ski mask next to a trash bag filled with items from inside the business.” Police made an on-the-spot arrest.  

Similarly, also in Brockton, police interrupted the robbery of a pharmacy last June after a telephone alarm was triggered, says one press account. In this case, the alarm company also had surveillance cameras on-site.  “The alarm company then called police to report glass had been broken at the store and they could see, through remote surveillance video, a man inside the store near the pharmacy.” The police apprehended the man, who was hiding in the locked pharmacy.

In both cases, alarms prevented the suspects from escaping with their ill-gotten goods. These examples show real- time security systems can help stop crime in its tracks.

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What Will 2020 Hold for High-tech Security in New England?

With a new decade upon us, we should stop for a second to consider any new high-tech threats that may arise nationally and in New England. A key area of worry is the ever-expanding risk of cyber attack.

We can’t know the future, but we can always be prepared to protect our property and loved ones. To that end, we’ll do a quick and informal review of the potential risks that lie ahead in the areas of home and business cybersecurity.

Cybersecurity and Other Dangers

When it comes to web/cyber-based threats, we must recognize the scope and scale of the problem. Even the biggest companies and public agencies are vulnerable to hackers and social engineering threats.

Just recently, in response to a U.S strike in Iran, Massachusetts cybersecurity providers warned of potential retribution from Iran via hacking attempts. Per Tom Kellermann, head of cybersecurity strategy at VMware, based in Waltham, “I fully expect a holy war to be waged in American cyberspace.”

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3G Sunset Hits Security Industry

A major change in mobile communication networks is on the horizon and will affect millions of security systems nationwide. The sunset of 3G cellular networks has begun, and you may need to take action to ensure your home or business security system will be able to communicate with our 24-7 monitoring station in the future.

“This is part of adapting to technology evolution,” said Maria Moretti, director of corporate operations at American Alarm. “We went through it, on a smaller scale, several years ago when the 2G network was shut down. So, we understand the impact and the importance of getting ahead of the curve for our customers.”

As many as 10 million home and business security systems in the United States now use 3G communicators to transmit signals to a monitoring station. The transportation industry is also affected significantly, with millions of tractor trailer trucks and delivery vehicles using 3G communicators for their wireless telematics systems.

“Anyone using a 3G communicator today will have to update their technology to make sure their systems can still send signals,” Moretti said. “We are staffing up now to help our customers make the transition.”

The end of 3G is occurring because the national wireless carriers, including Verizon and ATT are deploying new technologies to accommodate growing demands for streaming content, and for the exponential growth of networked wireless devices, often called the Internet of Things. To make room for the new network technology, both with frequency bandwidth and equipment on their towers, the wireless carriers will shut down their existing 3G networks.

The exact timing of the 3G sunset is an evolving matter, as the change will occur tower-by-tower in specific areas of the country, not all at once. Verizon and ATT are expected to keep most of their 3G networks operating until at least 2021. However, some parts of the country, including areas here in New England, are already losing 3G coverage.

“What we saw during the 2G sunset is the timing can be unpredictable,” Moretti said. “We want to make sure our customers’ security systems can always communicate with our central station so we can react to emergencies. That’s why we are launching our 3G update program now.”

American Alarm will be reaching out to affected customers by mail with more details.


Enjoy Small Business Saturday Securely and Successfully

Since its launch in 2010, Small Business Saturday has given smaller retailers and other local firms a chance to compete against the major online powerhouses, such as Amazon. As one of these smaller companies, you want to make the day as successful as possible.

That means using every tool and platform available. Ensure all your goods and cyber assets are secure, and your personnel both honest and competent. This way, you’ll increase your chance to end the day in the black and not the red.

Small Business: Big Results

The event has had a real-world impact throughout New England and the rest of the United States. In 2018, it drove nearly $18 billion in sales, according to the National Federation of Small Business (NFSB).

That’s not too surprising when you realize that there are:

  • About 28.8 million U.S-based small businesses
  • And these represent 99.7% of all U.S. businesses

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School Vandalism is Costly: Security Systems Can Help

School is back in session, which means school vandalism unfortunately tends to rise accordingly. Surveillance and security solutions can help school administrators to deter or resolve such incidents.

School-related vandalism — a type of crime involving any damage or defacement of school property — is a real problem in Massachusetts and beyond. According to the Vandalism at School website, the annual price tag to remedy this kind of crime runs at around $8 billion nationally.

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Self-Checkout: Most Commonly Stolen Items

Gaps Plague Retail Self-Checkout Security

We know that self-supporting retail technology — with its sensors, devices and big data capabilities — offers us many conveniences. However, basic self-checkout platforms don’t always work well for retailers, here in New England, and beyond.

In fact, the Springfield, Massachusetts-based chain of stores Big Y World Class Markets decided it had to remove its self- checkout aisles, according to a Worcester article. In large part, this move was because of the higher incidence of thefts. The article notes that shoplifting is five times more likely at a self-checkout terminal than at a typical human-manned cash register. Read more

5 Great Tech Reasons For A Business Security Update

You probably don’t spend much time thinking about your building’s security infrastructure, but it may be time you did.

Many property/business owners buy and install security solutions and then forget all about them. As with all high tech products and services, a security solution cannot run permanently on autopilot. It needs a bit of care and tending. Read more

How will Cybercrime Impact Commercial Real Estate in 2018?

In the commercial real estate business, protecting your building’s internet and data is as important as physically securing your doors and valuables. To remain competitive or even leapfrog your competition in this technology-driven world, CRE’s must invest more in interconnected technologies. This somewhat unavoidable investment increases your buildings exposure to the booming industry, cyber crime.  Read more

Is Your Commercial Real Estate’s Security System Future Ready?

Much like how technology is impacting the lives of consumers, commercial real estate (CRE) is also experiencing a digital transformation of sorts. Today, consumer technology is advancing at such a rapid pace that CRE accommodations like connectivity, quality of life and security must also advance. 

According to a recent Deloitte Market Report, to remain competitive or even leapfrog your competition, CRE companies must make their physical space future-ready. Here are the top three focus areas that will make the biggest impact:

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