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Dog at home

Smart Security for all the family including your pet

Belief that a dog is an alternative to a security system is mistaken. And we explain why…

Dog at home

Just about everyone is happy to see a dog—except for burglars, that is. When a burglar has a choice between a home with a dog and a home without a dog, the dog-free house will typically end up as the target.

Does that mean that you should forgo a professional security system because you own a dog? The answer is simply no and we’ve compared the 2 to explain this:

1: HOW RELIABLY DO THEY ALERT YOU TO TROUBLE?

Dogs have amazing senses, with their sharp ears and superior scents-ability. Much like a security system, a dog can alert you right away to an intruder on your property. The downside of this is, to your dog, many everyday visitors count as intruders. “Cat” “Postman” “Neighbour”. They’re all excuses for Finn to start barking.

A Smart Home Security System and specifically an Action24 security system does it better. Like a dog, it’s proactive when an intruder is detected  – powered by alarm.com software technology and industry leading touchscreen panel and sensors – if an intruder enters your home our  expertly trained operators are here 24/7 to alert you and the emergency services. You will also receive push notifications to the nominated smartphones/tablets on your account to let you know what is happening.

The verdict: Until dogs get their own dedicated GSM connections, smart home security wins this round.

2: HOW RELIABLY DO THEY ALERT YOU TO DANGER?

When there’s an emergency, everyone needs help. 

If there is a fire in the house, you and all your loved ones need to get out as soon as possible. Your dog will most certainly make you aware of smoke or fire by barking but your Action24 alarm system will alert our 24/7 monitoring centre staff who will call the fire service so you can focus on securing the safety of your family by leaving the house immediately.

Winner: Security systems and dogs can alert people to the issue, but the dog can’t connect to emergency services, a vital measure. Smart home security definitely wins this round.

3: HOW WELL DO THEY KEEP BURGLARS OUT?

Burglars avoid homes with security systems. 60% will go elsewhere if they see one. The Action24 Smart Alarm System includes an exterior Bell Box with an LED light that flashes continuously. Add a smart security camera and/or video doorbell and you have a formidable deterrent.

Of course, most burglars don’t want to meet your dog either. Should they spot the external dog kennel or hear muffled barking from inside, many will move along.

However, sometimes the burglar is happy to see a certain dog because that is the desired target. Dog-napping (not Finn having 40 winks) but people stealing dogs from other properties is a very real threat happening more and more today.

One-third of all burglaries are cases of unlawful entry – a burglar entering through an unlocked door or window. With proactive reminders and remote system arming, an Action24 security system can save the day when you’re in a rush and forget to secure the house. Your Action24 alarm system will even alert you if certain windows or doors have been left open (even when the alarm is not set). 

Winner: Security systems and dogs are both great deterrents, but a dog can’t send you a smartphone alert if you forget to set the alarm or worse let you know there is real danger in the house. Smart home security wins again this time.

4: HOW TAMPER-RESISTANT ARE THEY?

How does your canine friend hold up if an experienced burglar targets your home? It’s not unknown for a burglar to arrive with food to distract a dog. While a specially trained dog may hold his ground, most dogs will scamper off into the back garden after their delectable treat.

A criminal will need more than a dog treat to defeat an Action24 home security system. Even if they take a hammer to your panel, there is technology built into your system called “Crash and Smash” protection which will still alert our operators that there may be a break-in in progress.

Winner: Engineered to meet rigorous life safety standards and immune to temptation, the Action24 smart security system wins this one hands-down.

5: WHICH ONE IS MORE FUN?

You can have fun with a smart home security system. Checking in on your kids when they go to sleep, checking your pets when you’re not home and showing off your smart lights and video doorbell (Skybell) to your neighbours.

However it’ll never take the place of that cute, happy furball that always loves you, no matter what.

Winner: Sorry security system: this one goes to the dog.

ONE QUESTION REMAINS…

How do you best keep an eye on your dog and protect your faithful friend?

Animals, like humans, can be very unpredictable. And you may have a playful furry (or not so furry) friend at home who likes to take the stuffing out of the couch when no one is looking, like our dog Finn. Trained or not, when left alone, dogs can get bored and understandably get into mischief around the house. You also want to keep check on your faithful four legged family member to ensure they are ok when you are not there.

Smart Security Systems are controlled by you to do what you want them to do. Through the motion sensors and internal cameras of the security system, you can view your pets and monitor their movements at home via the app on your phone or tablet. Receive notifications, e.g. motion sensor detects activity in the living room when your dog should be in the kitchen. External cameras can keep an eye on your pets in the back garden, ensuring they are safe.

The Action24 Smart Security System can be used and managed remotely. You can check on things from your security system wherever you are outside the home. Dogs, although highly intuitive, can not alert you when you are not home. 

Want to improve your canine-based home security by installing a smart home alarm system with professional security monitoring? 

Fire Safety

This Winter, Be Fire Safe with Action24

Fire Safety

When you think about security, you often first think about burglary, theft and intruder protection.  What about fire protection? It’s super important as fire accidents happen more often than you would think and fire protection often gets overlooked.  

As the holiday season is upon us and we are having to spend more time indoors with all that’s going on – cooking, smoking and electrical related fires 🔥 have significantly increased.  The number of casualties from accidental fires in the home has now almost doubled.  And it’s not just the kitchen you need to worry about.  A fire can start in any room and the results can be devastating – it can take less than five minutes for a fire to engulf an entire property from the moment it begins.

So don’t get scared, be prepared.  Here’s what you can you do.

Working fire/smoke detectors are essential for your protection and safety.  They should be placed on every level of your home, inside or directly outside of each bedroom and common areas, in utility rooms and kitchensThey work…

✔︎Fire/Smoke detectors provide vital early warnings

︎Allow extra time to escape if needed

︎Immediately alert the connected monitoring station

There’s nothing like feeling warm & cosy this time of year, but heating equipment fires (portable heaters, heating blankets, etc), are a leading cause of home fires and casualties especially during December, January and February.  Be sure to follow heating safety tips for all your equipment and have a fire/smoke detector in the room where the heating equipment is.

Deck the halls.  Christmas trees 🎄and holiday decorations are notorious for catching fire and dry trees burn faster than a newspaper.  Be sure to check your electricals and home decorations regularly.

Be prepared.  Fire extinguishers 🧯should be placed and be easily accessible on every level of your home.  Don’t just keep one in your kitchen. This is a common mistake.  If a fire starts upstairs or in another room where you are, you most likely won’t be able to get that extinguisher in the kitchen.  

Have a plan.  Be sure to have an escape plan for you, your family and your pets in the case of a fire and practice it, so everyone knows what to do in case of an emergency

A few more tips to keep you safe.  We know they sound like common sense, but fires can start in the most common of ways.

Be Fire Aware: Be careful not to overload plug sockets

Ensure candles are not left unattended and put them out before going to bed

Be sure never to leave your cooking unattended

This Winter, Feel Safer with Action24

HalloweenPetSafety

Halloween isn’t just for Humans: A Safety Message from Finn this Season

HalloweenPetSafety

Ensuring you feel safer is our priority at Action24.  And while Halloween can be a great time for humans, it’s not quite the same for us pets.  So, we thought we’d take this time to talk about pet safety this time of year.

Let’s start with the treats.  First, be sure to keep them out of sight and reach.  Why?  Well…not all candy is safe for us.  Some candy is actually toxic.  Chocolate in all forms, especially dark chocolate or baking chocolate can be very dangerous for cats and dogs.  And, any candy containing the substitute xylitol can cause serious problems and reactions in pets.  Plastic wrappers are plentiful this time of year and they are not only a choking hazard, but they are not good for us to digest.  If you suspect your pet has ingested something toxic, please call your vet or your local poison control centre right away.  

Carving pumpkins is especially festive this time of year, and something the whole family can get involved with.  We will be curious about this interesting looking jack-o-lantern you’re creating and the risk of getting burned by the candle flame inside, is a serious threat.   Be aware and keep your lit pumpkin out of reach.  Also, be sure to put it in a safe place so it won’t get tipped over.  Starting a fire with a carved pumpkin is not the Halloween story you want to tell.  So be sure your fire detectors are in working order.

Let’s get into the fancy-dress part of the fun.  Did you know that across the pond, Americans spent over $450 million last year on costumes for their pets?  Wow!  Well, back here at home in Ireland, while it might be cool to dress us up for Halloween, some of us really dislike costumes, and this can cause unnecessary stress.  You will know right away if your pet likes or dislikes the costume. Let them be the boss here.  If they are cool with their birthday suit….so be it.  But If they are liking it, be sure the costume isn’t restricting in any way.  Be sure we can move freely, that we can breathe properly, that we can see ok, and that there are no small bits we can chew off and digest, making us feel awful later in the night.

And we all know this time of year brings out the bangers.  These loud, sudden noises when you least expect them, rattles humans, but it really upsets us pets.  Putting music on or the tv will help muffle the noises, and during Halloween eve, keep us away from the door when the noises will be loudest and more plentiful.  Keep our toys nearby and… our favourite blankie.  The goal is to make us feel calm, safe and comfortable.  

If you are going out and about this Halloween and bring us with you, be sure we have proper ID – a collar with ID tags or a microchip can be a lifesaver if we happen to wander off.  We don’t mean to wander off…we just get distracted.  There’s lots to see out there.

Your pet’s safety is a priority.  We know that, and we wanted to share our expert advice with you.  

Have fun this Halloween Season and Feel Safer with Action24.

Happy Halloween

xxx

Finn – The Action24 Dog

THE SMART PLUG: VERSATILE & BENEFICIAL

Part of the Action24 Smart Alarm System using the same app!

smart plug

Smart devices don’t have to be complicated to be useful. A prime example is the Smart Plug: it simply turns things on and off!

However as part of your Action24 Smart Alarm System, the smart plug becomes true to its name!

HOW TO USE IT?

  1. Configure your plug to the Action24 Smart Alarm App
  2. Plug it into any wall socket.
  3. Plug your chosen appliance into it.
  4. You can actively control the plug from your smartphone app or automate it so that it reacts to schedules and triggers from your Action24 security system.
  5. You can use it with a lamp, a TV, a coffee machine, even your Christmas Tree Lights!   

WHAT’S IT’S ROLE IN THE HOME?

Smart plugs are extremely versatile with many benefits:

SECURITY: When you plug a lamp into a smart plug, it becomes a smart light with home security benefits. Smart lights can deter burglars by making your home look occupied when you’re not there. As well as controlling them remotely, you can set realistic schedules that mimic real life, such as having your lights come on in the evening, or at slightly randomized times. You can also take advantage of motion sensors to turn front porch lights into motion-triggered security lighting.

CONVENIENCE: Smart plugs are great for automating everyday kitchen devices. You can start your day with your coffee machine already working, or your tea kettle already boiled. If you like to slow-cook, you can load up your homely stew or curry in the morning and switch it on with your smartphone from work.

The other advantage of the ‘whole home’ approach is that when one action occurs it can trigger another. Through the app you can set your own rules, for example, when you disarm your alarm system, it can trigger your lamp to turn on.

ENERGY SAVINGS: Smart plugs can put a small dent in your energy bills by automatically turning off appliances like TVs, which consume energy in standby mode, when you’re not home or during the night while in bed. With your app, you can have them switch off when you arm your Action24 security system.

NO ‘APP-CLUTTER’: Most off-the-shelf connected devices need their own app to control them. By adding the smart plug to your Action24 Smart Alarm System, it is controlled within the same app (Alarm.com). This un-clutters your phone and makes it simple to interact with your home. When you go to bed, for example, you can turn off your smart lights and arm your security system via a single screen.

For more information on smart plugs, please call 01 297 3333.

Other informative security articles can be viewed on the Action24 Blog or our LinkedIn profile.

Choosing the Best Home Security System

Choosing the right home security system can be confusing. You want to secure your home with a user friendly alarm system for the best value and there’s a lot to consider. Here are some common questions answered.

DO I NEED MONITORING IF I HAVE AN ALARM SMART PHONE APP?

Simple answer is Yes.

Professional monitoring is the gold standard of home security. If there’s a break-in or fire at home, a professionally monitored security system sends an emergency signal to our 24-7 monitoring station, where a trained security professional is on hand to alert the Gardaí or Fire Service.

The Action24 Smart Security System is professionally monitored and there is no effective substitute for this service. You can’t see every smartphone alert that a security system sends you, and if you’re home in an emergency, your priority is to get everyone to safety.

WILL MY SECURITY PANEL WITHSTAND A BURGLAR’S TOOLKIT?

Yes, for 2 valid reasons:

Crash and Smash protection. A common burglary tactic is to smash a home’s security panel to prevent it sending an emergency signal to our monitoring station. Alarm.com’s technology can recognise a crash and smash attack, and signal our monitoring station regardless.

Dedicated GSM connection. This type of signaling technology doesn’t piggyback on your home’s broadband or phone line, and so can’t be physically cut by an intruder. Action24 security panels have a dedicated GSM connection with battery backup for power outages.

HOW MANY SENSORS DOES IT COME WITH?

Contact sensors are home security essentials; small devices that detect the opening and closing of doors, windows, drawers and more. Some security systems come with as little as two contact sensors, which is a problem. Burglars don’t just use the front and back door.

Action24 will work with you to determine how many contact sensors your home needs, and provide them as part of the package. Currently we offer a combination of 8 wireless door/window contacts and motion sensors.

WHAT ELSE IS PROVIDED WITHIN THE ACTION24 ALARM SECURITY SYSTEM?

The proactive safeguards of the Action24 Smart Alarm System can protect your home from far more than a burglar and make life that little bit easier.

  • Danger Detection: The alarm system can detect and respond to dangers like fire and carbon monoxide.
  • Unexpected Activity Alerts: The app can alert you when there’s unexpected activity around your house, such as your kids getting into forbidden areas.
  • Convenience: With the skybell, accessible on your Alarm.com app, you can even manage your package deliveries remotely. Speak to the delivery person through the 2-way mic function so they can drop your package into a neighbour or hide it in your garden. Very handy if you’re doing your Christmas shopping online!  

With the ability to respond to more dangers and challenges, even when disarmed, an Action24 alarm system gives you more value in the long run.

WHAT HAPPENS IF SOMETHING STOPS WORKING?  

The most important thing about a security system is that it has to work when you need it. When you go it alone on a security or smart home setup, what happens when a device or component of the system needs professional attention?

With Action24, help is always at hand. With advanced training, and online diagnostic tools, we can quickly troubleshoot your system. Many issues can be fixed remotely; other fixes can be carried out by a visiting engineer. 

Action24 provide a dedicated service. To keep issues at bay, we carry out a remote alarm health check on every customer’s system every day to ensure alarms are functioning correctly.

In addition to great customer support when things go wrong, Action24 customers get digital updates that make their technology even smarter. There are regular new features for no extra charge, keeping your technology cutting-edge while other security systems grow obsolete.

IS IT JUST SECURITY? WHAT ELSE IS SMART ABOUT THIS SYSTEM?

Smart home technology is the home improvement trend that’s here to stay. The right security system will set you up with everything you need for a smart home. Action24 carry a wide range of essential smart devices. You can have connected video cameras, smart lights and a video doorbell. The smartphone app controls everything and you can use your voice commands with Amazon Echo… ‘Alexa tell Alarm.com to turn off the lights and set the alarm’.

Action24 Smart Alarm System Highlights Video

Ideal Home Show RDS

The Action24 team are delighted to be part of this years Autumn Ideal Home Show at the RDS in Ballsbridge.

The show kicks off on Friday, 25th October and will run for the duration of the bank holiday weekend until Monday, 28th October. As part of our exhibit, we will be showcasing our extensive range of home & business security services with impressive show deals, you can find us at stand S30.

We will give you demonstrations of our Smart Alarm System which gives you full control of your home’s security from your smartphone, offering peace of mind each time you leave your home. If you are attending the show this weekend, why not drop over to our stand and view this excellent system in action.

If you would like to learn more about our exhibit or our alarm systems you can contact us here.  

Top 5 reasons to choose an Action24 alarm system….

security system

With more and more choice in the monitored alarm and CCTV market, what makes Action24 stand out from the noise? We have listed the top 5 reasons you should choose us…..

1.Our equipment

2. Award winning Alarm.com app as standard

Every system we install comes with the award winning alarm.com app as standard.

  • Smart notifications to your phone (e.g. when you leave a window open – even when system not armed)
  • Geofencing functionality when you forget to set
  • Easily add and edit users and codes from within the app. This is useful if for example you want to set up a code for the cleaner, babysitter or a visiting relative.
  • Our app is free to download for you and as many users as you wish. This is not the case with all providers who charge extra for additional users.

3. Complete security cycle

  • We install your alarm, maintain your alarm and monitor your alarm. Absolutely no element of the service we provide to you is subcontracted to a third party. 
  • Every single person you deal with from Action24 is a directly employed, full time employee. As a result we can stand over all elements of the service we provide to you.
  • All engineer call outs, 24 hour technical support and replacement parts are included in the monthly fee you pay to us. This includes all sensor and panel batteries.

4. Our Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC)

The main element of our service to you is the provision of a 24 hour alarm monitoring service. Our app is easy to use and important but alarm monitoring is the reason you have engaged our services. 

Our ARC is certified to the European Standard EN50518 – the highest level standard an ARC can receive. Certification for EN-50518 covers all elements of the operation of a monitoring centre from HR and admin all the way through to response times and even the type of doors used within our facility. All of our staff members have been trained to exceptionally high standards, are Garda vetted and are individually licensed by the Private Security Authority (PSA). Our facility is truly industry leading.

5. Over 40 years experience

  • We have been installing electronic security systems since 1981. We know how to do this right! Our skilled engineers and operations staff are committed to providing you with the best possible experience 24/7.
  • We have a nationwide base of domestic and commercial customers so our engineers will always be close by.
  • Our number one goal is customer satisfaction. Check out our Google reviews and Facebook reviews to see some feedback from our customers.

The above is just a few reasons why you should consider our services. For more information or to talk to us about your security needs visit www.action24.ie, call us on 01-2973333 (& option 4) or email us on sales@action24.ie .

Alternatively feel free to call into our offices in Sandyford, Dublin 18 for a full demonstration, to meet the team and visit our ARC. We may even have some posh coffee for you!

Home Protection at Christmas

How To Keep Your Home Protected This Christmas

burglar christmasWe’re just 2 weeks away from Christmas and shoppers all over the country are scrambling to get their bits and pieces in before the big day arrives.

Most people are busy mapping out their arrangements for over the festive season and many are planning to go away on holiday.

Unfortunately, crime doesn’t take a holiday and while Christmas is traditionally known as the season of goodwill this certainly doesn’t apply to the opportunist burglars around the country. This is the busiest time of year for burglars with many homes becoming an Aladdin’s Cave of jewellery, electrical items, cash & other items.

There is also the rich pickings of homes left vacant by people who have chosen to head away for the seasonal break. That’s why it’s especially important to stay extra vigilant at this time of year. Here are some tips to keep your home from those less than festive burglars this Christmas.

Keep Valuables & Gifts Out Of Sight

There’s no better compliment for a nicely decorated Christmas tree than a neatly wrapped stack of gifts placed under it. While this is a festive tradition in many homes it can also serve as an incentive for a burglar to target your home.

It’s quite common for criminals to assess the homes they are going to target before breaking in. To prevent this you should position your tree away from the window to minimize visibility from the street. All curtains and blinds should also be pulled when the occupant is out of the house.

Keep All Windows & Doors Locked

While this is basic common sense you would be surprised at how careless some homeowners can be when leaving their homes. There is a surprising amount of burglars that have entered a home right through the front door so it’s important to take extra caution. Other things like leaving a front light on when out in the evening time can also act as a helpful deterrent.

Whether you’re out shopping, working or heading away for the holidays it’s important to triple-check that your doors, windows and all other access points to your home are properly secured. An open window or an unlocked door could make the perfect Christmas present for an opportunist burglar.

Dispose Of Packaging Discreetly

It’s common knowledge that many burglars assess the contents of a home by analysing the packaging left over from various electrical & valuable goods left out on the street. This practice is especially common at Christmas time.

If you have been lucky enough to of received a lavish gift such as a flat-screen or a laptop it’s best to dispose of the packaging in a discreet manner instead of leaving it visible for all to see. You might just be advertising your home as a potential target for burglars.

Notify A Neighbour

If you are heading away this Christmas it’s best to notify a neighbour to keep an eye on your home while you’re on holiday. If you don’t know your neighbours all that well, then perhaps invite a family member or a close friend to stay in the house while you’re away.

Offering to reciprocate this favour may also prove as a good incentive to your neighbours to keep an extra eye out for your home in the future. Another good way to keep your home secure is by forming a neighbourhood watch group.

Keep A Low Social Media Presence

While Social Media is used primarily to connect with friends & family it can also be used for more sinister intentions. Burglars will go to any lengths to find new homes to break into including monitoring Social Media channels.

If you’re heading away it’s extremely unwise to broadcast your travel plans to all and sundry. This also goes for flaunting your expensive new gifts online. This can serve as an open challenge for a burglar to target your home.  

Action24 offer a full security package for homeowners looking to beef up the security of their home this Christmas. Why not contact us today and find out we can help you.