Tag Archives: Security

The Need For Advanced Security Communication

The integration of security systems into the digital world has opened up many doors to create robust systems to allow us to stay connected to our home or business with a smart phone or laptop.  But there is another, critical advantage that has closed the door on serious security system vulnerabilities. Redundant Communication.

Over the years, systems were connected with standard telephone land lines, (POTS lines).  Many events have gone unreported to the monitoring station when the land lines were cut prior to the intruder entering the home or business, resulting in no communication to the central station and no response from authorities.  The loss is great. In addition, many businesses and some homes as well, have installed video surveillance camera systems in addition to security alarm systems to better enhance security and provide a visual record in the event of a break in to aid in the prosecution of would-be intruders.  But here is the problem:

The Scenario:

Intruder cases home or business and is aware of security system.  Then before breaking in, the intruder cuts all landlines to the premises, disabling communication from the security systems, and then proceeds to gain entry into the premises.  The Intruder sees a camera system in place and knows that a recording device such as a DVR is onsite recording the event.  After the intruder cleans out all the valuables from the premises, the recording device is located and taken from the premises upon exiting. When the home or business owner arrives to the premise, they find that they have been robbed, but wonder why the security system did not call authorities.  When they try to check the recording device for events, they realize it is missing.  Therefore, no video evidence is available either.

The Security System Solution:

With the addition of a cellular backup communicator, the system reports over both landline and cellular communication.  With the landlines cut, the cellular communicator is still able to report and the authorities are still dispatched.

A more recent technology has been added to security panels called Advanced Protection Logic, APL. This was developed to respond to the “Smash and Grab” action, where an intruder cuts phone lines, gains entry through a door that would normally have an entry delay and quickly disables any additional communication by smashing or removing the device from the premises.  Normally, no signals would be sent by either landline or cellular communication until the delay expires.  This is especially an issue with integrated security panels.  APL sends a signal to central station immediately when the door is opened, but it is stored in hold register, awaiting the correct security code to be received.  If the correct code is not received within the delay period, it is read as a valid signal and the authorities are dispatched.  If the correct code is sent in time, then the signal is dumped.x

The Video Surveillance Solution:

The advancement of network cameras has made a digital solution for video surveillance more affordable.  Up to 6 indoor or outdoor network cameras can be installed and managed through an IP Communicator.  Rather than video being stored on the premises, the video is immediately sent off-site and stored at the provider’s servers.  No recording devices are present on the premises and any events are captured and sent off-site for later review.  Nothing can be removed by the intruder to destroy the video evidence.

As the Information Technology world advances, the Security world will further integrate with it and the solutions and possibilities will advance with it.  We have come a long way since the conventional burglar alarm system and the need for advanced physical security will continue to grow.

Jim Welch – Technology Specialist

Leave a comment

Filed under Safety, security

Google Chrome’s Password Generator

Everything we do via technology requires some sort of password protection. Whether we log on to a computer, check email, online banking, smart phones, or any kind of account management, we need passwords. How do we remember them all? I certainly can’t. I’m constantly fighting with myself when I need to recall a password for a particular website. Then when I think I finally have a password remembered, the system requires me to change it!

Google is in the process of working on a password generator for its  Chrome browser, to create strong passwords for its users to safeguard against hackers. When a user visits a page that Chrome thinks is going to set up an account, it will place a key icon in the password field. If the key icon is pressed, and confirmed, Chrome will generate a password that include letters, numbers, and characters to make it difficult for hackers to crack, and impossible for the user to remember.

photo credit: PC Magazine

Once the password is accepted, Chrome will sync it with the user’s other devices running the browser. Why does Google thinks it’s a good idea? They speculate that if a person doesn’t remember his or her password, then it can’t be given away to phishers.

Google’s goal is to have the browser authenticate the user’s login and identity. Currently you can achieve this through password managers, but users still know their passwords. By having Chrome generate passwords for users, this can remove the problem of phishing.

So what if the user would like to see their password from time to time? Google stated that they will create a secure website where users will be able to see and possibly print the passwords. Another problem would be, if someone cracks into the user’s Chrome account, they would have access to that person’s passwords.

We just can’t win can we? My solution would be to have a password that you will always remember, but spelled backwards, with the first letter in capital case, and the last as a digit and a symbol. Either that or we can just tattoo the password onto ourselves, and when we want to forget it, just add a flower tattoo over it. It works for the celebrities…

Will you be using this service once it’s available? Tell us what you think, all comments are welcome!

Chrissy Le, Technology Marketing Specialist

Leave a comment

Filed under Free Applications, Safety

Your Safety – Technology at your Fingertip

At CS Technologies, we provide security and life safety solutions in a variety of packages. We provide security and video surveillance systems for both businesses and home, in addition we carry a line of 911 life safety pendants.  You can call us any time to see what product might suit your needs.

Below are two simple tips for using common technology (that we may already have) at our fingertips. Some newer cell phones now have “In Case of Emergency” at the top of the contact list.  This is your ICE person.  Be sure you have at least one ICE contact listed.  If it isn’t designated on your phone, simply add a contact “ICE – Dad”.  If you lose your cell phone, the finder could call your ICE contact who hopefully, can quickly identify you as the owner of that phone.

There are also “In Case of Emergency” applications that you can download to your  phone and some of those applications will permit you to add more than one ICE contact. You can also add family members along with their allergy, medication list with basic information about each family member such as blood type etc (information that emergency personnel need during a crises). The application I downloaded on my iPhone allows me to add wallpaper to set my lock screen and/or my home screen or both that identifies my emergency contact name along with my allergies.

An important benefit of ICE is that emergency responders may be able to quickly contact your emergency contact if something happens to you and you cannot make a call.

Here is another precaution you can take to be safe:  Most of us carry a security alarm with us and we don’t even realize it.  Our car remote has a “panic” button.  As you are out shopping, walking across large parking lots, have your keys in your hand.  A honking horn gets attention if you need it. Test your car remote to see if it works from your bedroom.  If so, carry that remote to bed with you.  Make a  safe neighbor pact to call police for each other if your horn starts blowing in the middle of the night. 

As we enter into a new year we will blog about tips on keeping you and your family safe. Your comments and ongoing discussions are always welcome. If you have any safety tips that you would like to share with us, don’t be shy, we would love to hear from you.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

Holly Lynn Berlin, General Manager

1 Comment

Filed under Blogging, Free Applications, Safety

Should you join the blogosphere?

Blogging is becoming more and more popular everyday.  Should you join the blogosphere? Take a look at this list to help you make your decision about blogging.

  1. To Express Your Thoughts and Opinions – If you have something to say, blogs provide a place to say it and be heard.
  2. To Market or Promote Yourself or your business, product or service – Sell……Sell….Sell…
  3. To Help Others – Many blogs are written to help people going through similar situations that the blogger has experienced.
  4. To Establish Yourself as an Expert – Blogging can help legitimize your expertise and expand your online prescence and platform.
  5. To Connect with People Like you – blogging brings like minded people together.
  6. To Make a Difference – Blogs can be issue-based meaning the blogger is trying to provide information to sway people’s thinking in a certain direction.
  7. To Stay Active or Knowledgeable in a Field or Topic – It’s a perfect way to post updated and fresh information.
  8. To Stay Connected with Family and Friends – Blogs can be a simple way for family and friends to stay connected from different parts of the world by sharing stories, photos, videos and more.
  9. To Make Money – You can make money with patience and practice, you can make money through advertising and other income generating activies on your blog.
  10. To Have Fun and Be Creative – Have a passion about your blog topic, so you can write prolifically about it.  Some of the best blogs started out as blogs that were written just for fun and to give the blogger a creative outlet.

To learn more about blogging check out our training schedule http://www.cstechplus.com/training/schedule.asp - we periodically teach a 3-hour class on “How to Create a Free Word Press Blog website”.

Posted by GM Holly

2 Comments

Filed under Blogging, Training, Websites