Security Tips

Whether you are a business owner or a home owner, the safety and security of your entryway and the people on your premises are top priority. Sometimes that first point of entry is the best place to begin when considering your onsite security.

Most studies done on break-ins report that intruders enter through the front or back doors. And most smash-and-grabs are done in the daytime when thieves see an opportunity. Prepare your entryway to protect your investments and the people you care about.

Tips for Homeowners:

  • Make sure your door is solid core or reinforced metal (solid wood can withstand more force)
  • Remove window panes in or around doorway or use security glass
  • Consider larger strike plates or dead locks for extra protection
  • Have a locksmith install locks correctly and be careful with extra key sets
  • Examine the doorway for weak spots: Is the frame wood? Would it be possible to pry open the door? Are your locks and strike plates updated?
  • Make sure your doors are always locked!
  • Install a peep hole at eye level or lower for the children of the house
  • Even a storm or screen door should be locked as this extra “layer” will deter most would-be thieves from attempting a quick break-in
  • Adding a security camera is a huge deterrent, and can be monitored right from your phone or computer
  • Never leave extra keys under doormats, plants or on ledges
  • Bright porch lights or motion-sensing security lights will make you less of a target at night

Tips for Business Owners:

  • Consider a door that opens outward—this absorbs greater force
  • Make sure hinges are secure and no one can “lift” door pins from hinges if the door opens outward
  • If you have a glass entryway, make sure your security cameras are highly visible and pointing directly at the entryway to deter intruders
  • Mesh grates or gates can be added to the inside of your windows or doors for extra protection when your business is closed
  • Cameras should be monitored and maintained regularly to make sure you have clear images of people entering your establishment
  • Lighting is everything! Your business should be brightly lit inside and out
  • Make sure nothing is blocking the view of your doorways so passersby can alert police of suspicious activity

Remember that burglar alarms and security cameras are always a great investment. Prevention is best—better to prepare and deter rather than have to pick up the pieces after a home invasion or robbery.

If you have any questions about how you can improve the security of your home or business, make sure to give us a call at Contact Security. We are there to help and we care!

Phone: 604-792-8055 (Chilliwack) or 604-854-8055 (Abbotsford)

Or visit our Free Quote Page to contact us and one of our team will get back to you.

They’re back! Every year a traveling group of smooth talking security salespeople sweep through our towns, going door to door selling home security and ‘automation’ with long term contracts & inflated monthly fees. BEFORE you sign the dotted line, read this!

11 Tips when buying a Security System.

  1. Ask for ID! Any security salesperson that sells security system in BC is required to have a valid security license registered with the Ministry of Justice. Photocopies are not valid. Don’t let anyone without one in your home.
  2. Be prepared for high pressure, today only deals. Choosing a security system to keep yourself and belongings safe is not something you should be rushed into. A reputable company will give you time to decide and honor their pricing or specials for more than a day.
  3. Be wary of salespeople that attempt to sell a system without looking around your home. A good security salesperson will ask to tour your home, point out the vulnerable areas and take the time to explain what they would recommend for your home. A commission based salesperson may offer a “basic” system to get a sale which is often not adequate protection for your home or families safety.
  4. Get another estimate and compare. Getting another estimate for similar equipment and services from another company will ensure you are not stuck with a much bigger bill than you need to have. Door-to-door salespeople often mention they have access to state of the art equipment exclusive to them. This is often untrue, as other companies have access to the same or superior product. Again, you should not feel rushed.
  5. Ensure your current contract is finished. If you currently have a monitored security system, make sure you have completed the full term and are aware of the cancellation period and costs. Some companies have auto-renew policies built into their contracts that you may not be aware of. The salesperson may offer to cancel the services for you, but remember that any remaining months on your contract will be billed directly to you.
  6. What is the warranty & service fees? Ask what the warranty period is and if service trips are included. The door-to-door salesman often represent companies based out of province. Do they have a local service tech, and if so, can they provide a reference? Choosing a local company will guarantee a timely response in the event of an issue.
  7. Ask what the duration of the monitoring contract is and what happens if you move? In BC, security monitoring contracts are valid for a maximum period of 36 months. Although you may have no plans on moving in the near future… Life happens. In that case will the company give you the option to buy out the contract at a reduced rate or move the equipment to your new home? Ask what those charges will be.
  8. Ask what the alarm company’s procedure is for alarms. Do they call the residence? When are police dispatched? In line with other local municipalities, Chilliwack recently announced they will be penalizing home owners for false alarms. Does the company have the option to add guard response service to prevent false alarm fees and what does it cost?
  9. Do you own or lease the equipment? Most companies will install equipment for a reduced rate with a monitoring contract. Ask the representative whether you own the equipment after this contract is complete and if it can be transferred to another provider. Are there options to lower the rate in the future?
  10. Get it in writing. A salesperson should not have a problem offering their contact information including direct phone number or email address if you wish to follow up with them at a later date. They should also provide you written confirmation to your questions if asked. Verbal agreements mean very little once the contract is signed.
  11. Be aware of the 10 day clause. Under the Consumer Protection Act of BC, all door-to-door security sales have a 10 day “cooling off period”. If you feel that you were pressured into a sale and regret rushing into a long term contract, you have 10 days from the installation date to cancel. You do not need to provide a reason and the company MUST remove their equipment and refund your money within 15 days.

If you have any questions about how you can improve the security of your home or business, make sure to give us a call at Contact Security. We are there to help and we care!

Phone: 604-792-8055 (Chilliwack) or 604-854-8055 (Abbotsford)

Or visit our Free Quote Page to contact us and one of our team will get back to you.

As a security company, we often focus on the safety and security of office buildings, businesses and homes—brick and mortar. Of course, the most important things in those spaces are the people who inhabit them.

Theft and vandalism prevention are the reasons why security systems, video cameras and alarm monitoring are crucial to any business or home, but taking care of family and the team at work should be the first consideration.

Contact Security offers some general tips for personal security which you can share with those special people in your life. Make sure you talk with family and staff and discuss these 10 tips:

  1. Always let someone know where you are going.
  2. Keep checking your surroundings when out and about—and keep your belongings hidden (cameras, phones, wallets, cash) and if you carry a purse, wear the strap across the body.
  3. Try not to be predictable—change your route or schedule when possible.
  4. Always walk with a buddy at night.
  5. Join a neighbourhood or office watch group.
  6. Carry a whistle or air horn to scare away attackers.
  7. Consider taking a self-defense course with family or other staff members.
  8. Trust your instincts and listen to your inner voice.
  9. Make sure you have a security plan in place to prevent robbery or physical threat.
  10. Keep doors and windows locked at home, work and in your vehicle.

Talking about safety and security at staff meetings or during a family meal may bring up some issues and concerns that can be addressed right away. These are great opportunities to learn from each other and help improve our personal security. We don’t want you to be thinking about it 24/7, but being prepared and aware will improve your overall security and provide peace of mind.

If you do ever find yourself confronted by a robber or your personal security is threatened, try to get a description of the criminal for the police. Any crime should be reported immediately to aid the criminal’s apprehension and help protect other potential victims.

And remember, Contact Security also offers 24/7 alarm monitoring, and medic-alert to help ensure your personal security is protected.

If you have any questions about how you can improve the security of your home or business, make sure to give us a call at Contact Security. We are there to help and we care!

Phone: 604-792-8055 (Chilliwack) or 604-854-8055 (Abbotsford)

Or visit our Free Quote Page to contact us and one of our team will get back to you.

If you are planning a holiday this summer, please take the following precautions to protect your home whilst you are away!

  • Stop mail and newspaper deliveries, or alternatively have a trusted neighbor collect them while you are away so that they do not accumulate.
  • Call or email Contact Security to let us know when you will be away and to notify us of changes to the alarm call list in your absence.
  • Turn off your main water control valve.
  • Secure all doors, windows, pet entrances and garage doors.
  • Transfer valuables to a safety deposit box at your local bank.
  • Place times on indoor lamps to illuminate your home at night, set times to turn on the radio or television randomly throughout the day and early evenings.
  • Place times on outdoor lights so that they turn on at dusk and off at dawn.
  • Check that no bulbs are burned out on your indoor lamps, outdoor light fixtures or low voltage lighting systems.
  • Arrange to have any landscaping continue and the lawn cut regularly in your absence.
  • Keep some shades, blinds up and curtains open to maintain a normal appearance to your home.
  • Have a trusted friend or family member check your home, both inside and out at random intervals.
  • Park a car half-way down your driveway if possible to create the illusion that someone is home as well as to inhibit a burglar to use your driveway as a better way to access your property.
  • Do not post on social media where you are going or how long you will be away.
  • Arm your security system!

Once you have a security alarm system installed in your home or business, you are responsible for using it correctly and preventing false alarms. These are a growing concern for the alarm industry as they work against the home owner and emergency services like the police and the fire departments by consuming their time and resources and also desensitize watchful neighbors. They also increase the costs for police departments and alarm companies. These costs can then be passed back to everyone in the form of higher taxes and industry service charges.

  • Instruct all authorized users on proper operation of your alarm system. Notify the monitoring station that you will be testing the system and give all your new users hands-on practice.
  • Close all windows/doors prior to arming your system. Curtains and blinds moving in the wind may cause a false motion alarm. Ensure you have pet-friendly motion detectors if you are alarming your system with pets in the home.
  • Ensure all users have an Emergency Response Card and a confidential password to properly identify themselves to the monitoring station. Please notify us of all passwords you want us to add or to delete from your file.
  • Instruct all authorized users to call the monitoring center immediately if they set off a false alarm. All authorized users must provide their name, system number and confidential password when communicating with the monitoring station.
  • If you do not have a siren on your alarm system, please have one installed so that users are aware if they set off a false alarm and can take action to ensure an emergency service is not dispatched.
  • Test your alarm system regularly to ensure it is working properly. We recommend you test your system on a bi-monthly basis. Before testing your system, please call the monitoring station to inform them you are testing the system.
  • If your alarm system is malfunctioning, call Contact Security immediately. You may also advise the monitoring station of the situation and ask them not to respond to alarms until you or Contact Security advises them that your system has been repaired.
  • Most police departments have a suspension program in place to penalize people who have an excessive number of false alarms. Please make sure you are aware of the False Alarm Program in your jurisdiction. If your account is suspended by the police you will receive a letter informing you of the suspension. Please notify the monitoring station, Contact Security and your Insurance Company that your account has been suspended.

Let’s work together to reduce false alarms!