VoIP Compression Affects Alarm Monitoring and Communication

When an alarm system communicates via a POTS line - or Plain Old Telephone System - a telephone call requires the same amount of bandwidth whether someone is talking or during a silent pause. VoIP protocol, on the other hand, compresses the signal to minimize the file size it needs to transmit. The conversion process is what often causes alarm-system glitches. To compound the problem, the compression ratio used by VoIP providers varies greatly. Even within the same provider’s network, the compression ratio may be based on current network capacity.

Other VoIP Concerns Include:

  • RJ-11 wiring concerns
  • Inadequate battery back-up to meet UL-NFPA standards
  • On-Hook and Dial tone issues
  • Potential Outages due to network updates
  • Difficulty or inability of alarm transmission formats to pass through VoIP network
  • Compromised security until the loss of service is noticed

EMERgency24 has several solutions to enable your alarm system to work with VoIP, including radio, cellular and Internet communication technologies:

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Prevent False Alarms

In most communities, when a burglar alarm is activated, emergency responders are dispatched to the home to determine the cause of the signal and check on the well-being of residents.

However, some cities are experimenting with a practice called Verified Response. That means monitoring companies or alarm-system owners must confirm there is an actual intrusion that requires police response. This policy is also referred to as "Non-Response."

As an alternative to this dangerous policy, the security industry developed a widely accepted procedure called Enhanced Call Verification (ECV), which helps reduce false dispatches while still protecting tax-paying citizens.