Technology and Home Security
Home security is something that most of us are increasingly concerned about. Our homes can be full of valuables from our computer equipment to our audio visual systems and jewellery – it can be surprising how much of great value we pack into even the smallest of homes. Many of us have security alarms fitted, even the family dog can be valuable in alerting us to possible dangers, but there are many other ways of improving the security of your home space.
Karen Chugg, Managing Director of Intelligent Abodes is an expert in the field and advised us about some of her favourite ways to use technology to improve home security.
“There’s a huge range of security system available to people these days. Home Alarms are without doubt helpful – even the most basic can be an effective deterrent to a potential break-in. We install a lot of security alarms, often along with CCTV systems which can be very simple or extremely sophisticated accurately monitoring all internal and external spaces. But, the ideal security set ups that we increasingly install integrate into the heart of a ‘smart home’, and work alongside the lighting, smoke alarms, water, gas, blinds and heating control. This sort of system can keep you and your family safe in many ways, with simple control from a smart phone, tablet or the internet and, critically, from wherever you are in the world.”
Karen explained further “If for example you hear a strange noise at night, you can light up your home’s security lights at the touch of a button. The systems have the option of a ‘panic mode’ that will light up the lights of your choice instantly; so you could have all the external, as well as internal lights turn on to maximum brightness all triggered by a sensor or via a button from the security of your bed.
At this time of year, many of us are conscious that we are going away to stay with family or friends and leaving our homes empty at a vulnerable time. I particularly love the ‘holiday’ settings on these security systems which can give your home a truly lived-in appearance. Lights can turn on and off, curtains can open and close all to your usual schedule so they show a flexible pattern and give a real ‘lived in’ look.
Other features mean that as you leave the house you can set your alarm and for example all internal lights could turn off while external lights come on to guide you to your car. You can check, activate and deactivate your security system – locks and alarms for example, whilst you are away. You can monitor your CCTV cameras from a smart phone or tablet to give you extra reassurance – even check on the dog whilst it’s home alone!
For additional safety, if a smoke alarm is triggered, lights can be programmed to instantly come on to illuminate the path to safety. Or if a sensor detects a gas or water leak then the supply can be set to automatically shut-off. Carbon monoxide detectors that actually talk to you advising you on the level of risk and if there’s an immediate risk the boiler will automatically shut down.
The options for technology helping keep your home a safe haven are amazing – systems made by great companies such as Vantage, Rti, Lilin, IC Realtime for example – and they’re often not as expensive as people imagine. I’d recommend always talking through your concerns and the options with an expert home automation company.”
Karen Chugg is Director of south west based Intelligent Abodes www.intelligentabodes.co.uk