Choosing a home security system needs careful consideration, more so because it’s a matter of ensuring your family’s safety around the clock. With so many options available in the home security market, how do you figure out which are the best?
We recommend reviewing these three criteria when looking for a quality alarm system for your home.
CRITERIA ONE: Commercial-Grade Anti-Jamming Technology
With so many stories in the news about home security systems and cameras being hacked, anti-jamming technology is more important now than ever. The best security systems leverage multiple layers of this technology to thwart hackers.
Over the Air Encryption
AES (advanced encryption standard) is the current US standard in symmetric block ciphers. AES is widely regarded as the most secure symmetric key encryption cipher ever invented. It’s so secure, the US government uses AES to protect its “top secret” data. We recommend choosing a wireless alarm system that employs 128-bit AES encryption when sending signals.
900 MHz Band Communication
Many wireless home security systems on the market today are vulnerable to hacking because they use narrow band communication at 300 MHz or 433 MHz on the radio spectrum. A hacker can easily overload an area with transmissions in the same frequency as that used by the system, interfering with security sensors’ signals.
In contrast, utilizing the 900 MHz band is more secure and reliable than standard home security systems. In fact, it is the wireless communication method of choice for commercial security. Using this band ensures clear and accurate signal transmissions without interference in practically any environment.
Frequency Hopping Spread-Spectrum Technology
Frequency hopping spread spectrum (FHSS) signals hop from one frequency to another every 32 milliseconds. This ultra-fast hopping across 53 frequencies creates a unique pattern of exchanging signals, adding another layer of security and ensuring maximum immunity to jamming by a hacker.
CRITERIA TWO: Quality Manufacturing
With the protection of your home and family on the line, choosing a safe and reliable security system is vital. The quality of your home alarm system should be backed by a warranty and be reputably certified. Here are a few ways manufacturers of home security systems increase reliability of their products.
UL and/or ETL Listings
UL and ETL are nationally recognized testing laboratories (NRTL) that determine a product’s compliance with industry standards for safety. Products that boast their certification seals are nationally recognized by consumers as safe. Unfortunately, there are many products on the market today that are not safety certified – be sure to look for the UL and/or ETL marks on your security system equipment.
Made in the USA
There have been numerous stories in the news recently of electronic equipment produced by Chinese manufacturers that have been found to have significant coding errors and vulnerabilities, compromising their security.
US manufacturers must adhere to federal standards and regulations, using safer materials and processes than many foreign-made products. As a bonus, buying American products not only supports our own economy, but also our citizens through job creation.
Two-Way Wireless Communication
Two-way wireless communication technology outperforms alarm systems using one-way signals. With one-way communication, sensors can transmit to the receiver, but the receiver cannot communicate back. Therefore, the sensor doesn’t know if the transmission was received.
Two-way communication allows the receiver to exchange information with the sensors. With this technology, sensors immediately receive a confirmation signal from the receiver. The system would indicate if there was a problem detected with the transmission, adding a level of protection not seen in standard alarm systems.
The benefits of this system self-check include:
- Extended battery life.
- Increased system reliability.
- Notification if a sensor is malfunctioning or has been compromised by a hacker.
900 MHz Band Communication
Not only is the 900 MHz band more secure, as mentioned earlier, but the range is considerably longer. Wireless sensors communicating in the 900 MHz band can be placed up to 1,200 feet from the receiver. With systems operating in the 300-433 MHz band, the maximum recommended distance is just 300 feet.
CRITERIA THREE: Superior Customer Support
Nothing beats knowing that the company you are entrusting to guard your house actually cares about you and your family. The best security companies take pride in what they do and want to build a relationship with their customers to ensure their safety. Some things to look for in a security company that offers outstanding support:
- Real people answer the phone when you call.
- Alarm monitoring is done in-house, not outsourced to a large or foreign corporation.
- Employees undergo security background checks.
- Service is comprehensive – they offer help online, on the phone, or by sending a technician to your home.
NWOSS Meets the Criteria for the Best Home Security Products
When choosing NWOSS, you can take pride in supporting a local small business and be confident that you have a quality home security system to protect your home and family. Benefits of our home security systems:
- Designed, engineered, and manufactured in Springfield, Missouri.
- All security products meet requirements of the Buy American Act (BAA).
- Systems use 900 MHz Frequency Hopping Spread-Spectrum technology.
- Systems use two-way wireless communications.
- All of our residential products are backed by a one-year warranty.
NWOSS is located in Ohio, and our co-founder is an US Army veteran. We are proud to sell, service, and install home security products made in the USA.
And a BONUS…
NWOSS also provides professional monitoring services.
- Our alarm monitoring is done in-house, not outsourced.
- Our Monitoring Station is located right here in Ohio.
- When there’s an emergency, it’s comforting to talk to real people. Our representatives stay on the line with you until you feel safe.
- We provide monthly, professional care for our equipment.
- Our Monitoring Station operates 24/7/365.