What’s Better: Monitored Or Self-Monitored Alarm?

You’re thinking about getting a home alarm system. You’ve looked at a few options and are wondering to yourself what kind should you get: one that comes with professional monitoring or a self-monitored system, where only you and a select contact list are notified if an alarm is triggered. How can you make a smart decision?

There is no shortage of options for a self-monitored alarm system and a monitored alarm system. Companies like ADT, AlarmForce, Simplisafe, CPI, and Ackerman offer a traditional monitored home alarm system, while companies like Canary and Dropcam have a self-monitored solution. What’s the difference between self-monitored and professionally monitored alarms?

When a professionally monitored home security system is tripped a signal is sent to the monitoring station who can then assess the situation and then contact the police if necessary. A self-monitored system only notifies the homeowner through a text, email or automated phone call.

If the homeowner is busy or doesn’t have their phone on them, then they can’t deal with whatever situation is occurring. Plus, if they are far from their home, they may know that the alarm was tripped but can’t get any information beyond that. Self-monitored systems rely solely on the homeowner to resolve the situation, which may not always be possible.

A professionally monitored system has the monitoring station involved in the assessing process and the dispatching of whatever first responder is needed. This provides unmatched peace of mind and a response regardless of the homeowner’s activities or location.

While a self-monitored system is better than nothing, it doesn’t come close to the value that a professionally monitored home alarm provides. The peace of mind and level of security is unparalleled, giving the homeowner a better response and ultimately better security.

Remember though that not all alarm systems are created equal, so do your research on what type of alarm monitoring they provide, if their central station is a 5-diamond certified central station if they have an alarm contract and also the monthly price should factor into your decision. Think Protection and make an informed choice.

The Problem With Google Nest…

Nest is a product line which was purchased by Google, that includes a thermostat and Dropcam video surveillance system. These products are regarded as well designed and quite functional. While they’re not cheap, the products are considered two of the more advanced on the market.

Each product is fairly easy to set up and aesthetically nice. They each have automation features and are far more advanced than the vast majority of security products in service.

So if the products are well designed and provide a quality service, what’s the problem?

The problem is that Nest is a Google product. This sounds like a good thing right? The truth is that Google is in the home automation/security space for one reason, and that’s to get information about Nest users. This means that all actions through Nest are tracked by Google. This data is of significant value to Google as it lets them understand the users living patterns. This invasion of privacy (and it is an invasion of privacy) allows Google to then use that data to create a full profile of their customers. They can then market to their customers since by understanding and documenting how the customer lives, they can sell that data to retailers.

Data about how customers live their lives is incredibly valuable to a retailer. To understand how they live at home gives you an insight that is invaluable. But as a Nest client, do you want businesses to know how you’re living at home? Do you want them to know what you’re doing? How many times you enter and exit your home? How you heat/cool your home? When you’re home and when you’re away? And do you want a company then selling that data?

A quality home automation company that is based on security, understands that customer data is not to be sold. They treat their customers with respect and will never sell any information to a third party.

Be wary of using a Nest Google system. There are other options at a lower price being offered by companies that will never sell your data. More people need to more cognizant of how certain companies operate and be protective of “big brother”.