Burglar alarms are, as the name indicates, cautions of signals raised at the strike of burglars or intruders. Basically, they contain a sensor, which is connected to a control unit through low voltage hardwires or RF signals. The control unit is connected to an interactive voice response device for raising alarms.
Normally the purpose of burglars alarms is for single point only that of raising alarms against human intervention. But they are used for other purposes like fire, intrusion and for safety alarms. Their use has been extended from home to business houses and other commercial places also. The scope of this write-up is limited to analyze the home alarm systems.
The first modern home alarm systems was the result of modification of thousands of systems invented. A certain Mr. Tildesley, an English inventor was the first to come out with an acceptable model of a burglar alarm. He linked some bells with the door lock and made the system to ring when someone touched or tried to open the locks.
The next innovation came in the form addition of electricity and use of magnet. In 1850, the Boston inventor, Mr. Augustus Pope made contact points in the alarm system by the use of electricity wires and magnets. At the use of doors, the contact got closed and an electrical circuit formed to ring the bell. Mr. Edwin Holmes got the patent rights of Pope’s invention and moved his business to New York in search of new and bigger market for use in homes. But initially, people were skeptical about using electricity for them.
The use of electricity for street lights in 1880 changed the entire scenario with people started accepting electrical models. The American Telephone and Telegraph Company bought the Holmes Burglar business in 1905 with linking it to emergency call systems for inviting police and fire fighting personnel. After World War II, they became less expensive and more versatile for use in 1980s, and by the middle of 1990s the system has become a standard feature. Then wireless system came. In the most advanced technology, the use of motion detectors, surveillance equipment and electronic tracking devices are being used.
Home security and alarm systems have become synonymous in the security context. With the construction of houses in the outer areas of the city and away from the city limit the security concept has got up with the people. The direct linking of the modern systems with the local police stations has given people more confidence and has assured immediate help from the law enforcers.
Myths about Alarms
In spite of high technological advancements in home alarm systems, there are some myths and misconceptions. The first and foremost point is affordability of the system. The need of the system depends upon the things to secure. If valuables are kept in the house they need some protection for which we have to spend some money.
The second point of myth is it is often misconstrued with insurance. When I have insurance why I should go for home alarm systems is the normal question a skeptical person may ask. For them we may ask back when insurance is there, why we should lock our house. The concept of insurance and security are two different things which should not be mingled and confused. Insurance clauses get activated when you take all precautionary steps for the protection of assets and the loss has occurred despite all possible steps taken for the security.
Another misconception is the difficulty in operation and maintaining pass codes. But these are the things one has to do for the safety of the belongings. Another common doubt is about its workability in the absence of electric current. Nevertheless, modern alarm systems come with backup power and works on batteries. In fact, the power interruption the intruders attempt to make results in the form alarms being activated.
Despite the cynicism expressed about the burglar alarms, they have come to stay with us. The wide use of them all over the world is the testament for this.