You may be surprised to discover that around 90 percent of the alarms, to which police officers are dispatched, are false. Each of these events monopolize an average of two officers and 20 minutes of time, according to a recent report by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS). These are resources that could have been dedicated to true crimes or to other important law enforcement initiatives.
Police departments are fining businesses more frequently for these false alarms in order to offset the costs of unnecessary dispatches. Usually imposed after one or two “free” false alarms, these fines accumulate per incident and can be as high as $3,000 in some cities. The LAPD (Los Angeles Police Department) recently reported a 60 percent decrease in false alarm calls since they began charging businesses for them.
COPS notes that you can avoid this situation by using a managed security system. Prior to dispatching officers, an alarm’s validity can be easily viewed and verified through remote video monitoring (RVM). This also protects you in the case of non-false alarms; a growing number of police jurisdictions throughout the country will not send out officers unless an incident is verified. Through video—one of the fastest growing segments of security today—24/7 operations centers can provide this “verified response” around the clock.
With this security enhancement, you can avoid false alarm fees and allow local law enforcement to focus on protecting you from legitimate threats.