False Alarms in Security Systems: How Technology Can Prevent Them

False alarms are one of the biggest —if not the biggest —problem facing the security industry today. Home and business owners rely on security systems to keep them safe and alert them to intruders. When the system mistakes a pet or falling plant for a threat, panicking the user with a false alarm, it damages trust and causes frustration. 

If security companies don’t address the problem of false alarms and introduce effective solutions, customer churn will continue to be an issue.

According to Parks Associates, the prevalence of false alarms is a top reason households cancel monitoring services. Parks Associates research shows that 62% of security system owners experienced a false alarm in the past 12 months. About half of system owners say their security system triggers too many false alarms. 

Security companies’ customer retention, brand reputation, and revenue growth rely on reducing or eliminating false alarms. Doing so successfully will require security solutions that embrace innovation and new technology. 

We envision a future with no false alarms. Let’s dig into the heart of the problem, the true costs of false alarms, and the solutions that could change the industry.

What causes false alarms in security systems?

Common triggers for false alarms include:

  • Pets
  • Low batteries or faulty power source
  • Improper installation
  • Falling objects 
  • Open windows or doors
  • Bugs
  • Robotic vacuums
  • Human error, such as entering the wrong code, forgetting to disarm the system, or not responding to text messages or phone calls from the monitoring center
The cost of false alarms
False alarms have financial, operational, reputational, and safety consequences: 
  • Fines: Homeowners may face fines of up to $250 per occurrence. About two out of three security system owners pay a fine for a false alarm, with an average cost of $150. Security companies may also face fines.
  • Wasted resources of emergency services: False alarms can waste the time and resources of emergency responders. An Urban Institute report found that between 90 and 99 percent of alarm calls to police end up being false alarms. If responders are dispatched unnecessarily, it reduces their ability to attend to real emergencies. 
  • Reputation damage, unhappy customers: If they’re unable to prevent false alarms and their users are forced to pay fines, security companies will see their reputation suffer. Before they know it, their customers will be disgruntled, frustrated, and in search of better solutions. 
WiFi Sensing technology, innovations preventing false alarms

After too many false alarms, customers will doubt the value and reliability of their security system. Changing that perception requires near perfection from security companies— something new technology can help them achieve.

WiFi Sensing technology, powered by AI, detects motion using existing WiFi signals. The highly accurate technology comes with advanced motion classification that knows the difference between human and non-human sources of motion. 

With WiFi Sensing, and Origin’s home monitoring solution, false alarms could be a thing of the past. Customers can rest easy knowing that they’ll only be alerted if there’s a real threat present.

Solving the false alarm problem is a business opportunity. The security companies that do it, and do it right, will outpace competitors and build a loyal following of safe, happy customers. 

Are you ready to solve the false alarm problem? Integrating highly-accurate WiFi Sensing into existing DIY and DIFM security systems is seamless and cost-effective. Let’s talk!

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