Holmes Total Connect

untitledAs technology brings the world closer together, the need to feel connected is ever present. With our Holmes Total Connect remote security solution you can now utilize the internet to control your security system in real time. Whether you’re across the street, across town, or across the country you can use the internet, PDAs, cell phones, or any other web enabled device to access your business or home security system. And now with Holmes Total Connect Video you can remotely view your business or home from any internet capable device including most smart phones!

With Holmes Total Connect you can now have remote security surveillance:

* Arm and check status of your security system
* Disarm and silence your system
* Change codes if it has become compromised
* Add and delete users
* Receive texts or e-mails of certain events

By adding our Holmes Total Connect Video solution, you can also remotely:
* View you home or business while away
* Keep an eye on your second home
* Watch your pets while at work

What is CCTV?

There is plenty of jargon in the technology world, so we’re here to explain in simple terms what a CCTV security system is. CCTV stands for closed-circuit television. This simply means that the footage collected by CCTV security cameras is not broadcasted. Instead, the video imagery or simple video is recorded onto a DVR (digital video recorder) or NVR (network video recorder).

CCTV security cameras are used primarily for surveillance purposes by retail businesses, banks, casinos, airports, gas stations, restaurants, and other institutions to protect merchandise and keep their customers safe. CCTV equipment can record video continuously or be programmed to monitor a specific event or certain time of day. The video can be stored for a period of time at various levels of quality so personnel can go back and examine old video.

Many times, the presence of CCTV security cameras in a public location is enough to deter crime. However, when a wrong is committed, the video recorded by a CCTV security system can make the difference between the perpetrator getting away and being caught.

Some of the newest security cameras are called IP, or internet protocol, cameras. These transmit digital video across data networks. Unlike strictly CCTV security cameras, the video captured by IP cameras can be transmitted across the internet publicly. Because of this, many people argue that IP cameras are not closed-circuit. However, the video can be protected by a password and kept private. This way, users can view their video privately from any internet connection across the globe’even from their 3G phones’as long as they have the password.

A wide variety of cameras are available for video surveillance purposes. The trick is finding the right CCTV security system that is right for your security application.

Bob DeProspero, ATV (Advanced Technology  Video)

Daylight Savings Time

Daylight savings time begins this weekend, and we are always reminded that it is a great time to check our smoke detector batteries.   That’s great advice.   Even better advice might be to add a smoke detector or two to your monitored security system.

Why?   Well, a smoke detector is designed to make noise at the first sign of fire or smoke.   If you are at home, and can hear it, that’s great.   It will do its job.   But what if you are not home?   Kind of like a tree in the forest, if a smoke detector goes off and no one is there to hear it, does it make any noise?   I’m sure it does.   In fact, it will probably keep doing its duty while your house burns around it.

To a monitored smoke detector, it  doesn”t matter if anyone is home or not.   It is going to send its signal to our U.L. Listed Central Station, and we’re going to dispatch the local fire department.   If you’re home, you can escape.   If you’re not,  early notification might just save your home and valuables.   And isn’t that why you have a smoke detector in the first place?

Christmas Fire Safety

This is the time when Americans decide to buy a Christmas tree, pull out all the old strings of lights, put up the worn-out decorations and plug forty-seven strings of bubble lights into the single electric outlet under the picture window. Please be safe this holiday season.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, each year hospital emergency rooms treat more than 8,000 people for injuries such as falls, cuts and shocks related to holiday lights, decorations and Christmas trees. In addition, Christmas trees are involved in more than 400 fires annually, resulting in personal tragedies and injuries, and an average of more than $17 million in property loss and damage.

Fire safety tips:

  • Test your smoke detectors.
  • Keep candles or matches away from other decorations and draperies, and out of the reach of little hands.
  • Don’t overload electrical outlets.
  • Replace old bulb sets with mini-lights.
  • Electric space heaters are safe when used according to directions, but don’t allow furniture or decorations to sit too close. Again, be careful to not overload electrical circuits.
  • Do not use candles on or near the tree.
  • Dry trees and wreaths burn like a torch.
  • Check all lights for frayed or damaged cords, and replace if necessary.
  • Never use lights that have an empty socket.
  • Turn off all holiday lights prior to leaving your home or going to bed.
  • Use weatherproof outdoor lights and cords for outdoors.

October 3-9 is Fire Prevention Week.   To save your home from a dangerous flare-up, follow these tips:   Clean lint from your dryer after every load; keep flammables, like drapes, at least 3 feet from space heaters; check lamps for frayed wires; and make sure not to overload outlets and power strips.   And, of course, install quality smoke detectors.

Battery powered smoke detectors are good – they’ll make noise and will probably alert you if you are home, and if you have changed the batteries.   Monitored smoke detectors are better – not only will they alert you, but they’ll alert our Central Station, and we’ll dispatch the fire department.   And they work even if you are not at home!   And there is no additional charge to your monthly monitoring rate!   And there is no reason to delay – call us today!

New Commercial

We’ve recently posted our latest TV commercial to YouTube (or you can see it conventionally over WECT-TV Channel 6 out of Wilmington).   We were fortunate to have been able to enlist the aid of two local professionals – DellMarie Pittman and Bo Thorp – to star in the production.   They were great.

Security is serious business, and we’ve been at it for 47 years now.   We’re proud to say that we have offices in Fayetteville and Wilmington, NC, as well as the only local, UL rated Monitoring Center in eastern North Carolina.   We’re here for you 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Take a look at the video, and let us know what you think.

Protect Yourself

The Fayetteville Police Department recently issued an alert  concerning the rash of door-to-door alarm sales.   It was appropriately titled “Protect Yourself From Fraud“.

Take a moment to read this alert, and understand that the alarm industry is highly regulated.   All representatives must be licensed.   If you are approached by one of these door-to-door alarm salespeople, call your local law enforcement office and place a report.   If you decide to talk to the representative, ask to see their alarm license.   Before making any decision, at least check the company’s rating through the Better Business Bureau.

More information can be found at the Fayetteville Police Department’s website “Be The Badge“.

If the glove doesn’t fit…

line cutWhile doing yard work the other day, I discovered a pair of gardening-type work gloves between the bushes in my front planting bed and my house.   You know the type of gloves, cloth on one side with a rubberized, non-slip palm.   I knew the gloves weren’t mine, and I knew they didn’t belong to my wife or daughter. Would they do yard work?   No way.

My initial thought was that someone had tried to open a window and gain access to my house.   In my mind, I pictured the would-be burglar being startled by a vigilant neighbor, and dropping the gloves as they ran off.   Who knows?   All I’m sure of is that I found a pair of gloves ‘ not mine ‘ in a strange location at my house.   And suddenly, I felt very vulnerable.

Sure, I have an alarm system, and it’s monitored.   But there are other things I could do to make my home even safer.    Little, common sense things.   Like making sure my windows are locked, and making sure my deadbolts are in place.   And, like making sure my bushes are cut low enough so that an intruder can’t hide behind them.   I’ve been meaning to cut them ‘ honest I have.   There’s nothing like a little common sense, and a little incentive to get the job done!