Guest Post: Keep Tabs Using Tracking Services

Jerrod Smith by Jerrod Smith | 04.27.2015

Jerrod Smith is owner and founder of Fortress Security.

Just last fall, Honeywell Total Connect Tracking Services was introduced, giving dealers like us the ability to help customers monitor vehicles and high-value property. Since then, we’ve been performing five to ten installations of the tracking system each month.

Total Connect Tracking

Honeywell Total Connect Tracking Services benefits a wide variety of Fortress Security’s customers.

What we’ve found is that the variety of applications for tracking have been wider than one might guess initially. Rather than getting interest from just a few types of small businesses, we’re finding that there isn’t a strict customer profile. The service is useful to any company or family that has a collection of vehicles they want to keep an eye on.

What Do Customers Get?
With Honeywell Total Connect Tracking Services, customers can keep tabs on their vehicles by seeing:

  • Where tracked vehicles are in real time, as well as 90 days of location history
  • History of vehicle speeds
  • The length of time drivers spent traveling on particular routes
  • Alerts for when speed and travel-area limits are exceeded

The data provided is easily monitored from a personal computer, cell phone or other mobile device. Businesses can get a snapshot of where all of their vehicles are at once, which can be applied to any company with employees out on the road like pest control, pool maintenance, lawn service, food delivery, transportation of materials and goods or hospital delivery of important supplies, equipment, and transplant materials.

Residential Opportunities
Individuals may find a host of different reasons to adopt the service as well. They’re able to track stolen personal vehicles, monitor use of recreational items like boats, ATVs, RVs, and motorcycles, check on out-of-sight heavy equipment or shipping containers, even make sure a new teen driver made it to school.

We recently had a unique application for a customer whose elderly father has dementia. The man wanted to keep an eye on his father to make sure he didn’t get lost while running errands. By setting up alerts that went directly to his smart phone, he would know if his father ventured further than the supermarket for milk, or whatever parameters he felt were needed. Every family’s circumstance is different, and the ways people can use tracking software to protect vehicles and loved ones are just as varied.

How Does It Work?
If you haven’t offered vehicle tracking before, here’s the rundown of how it works. Honeywell Total Connect Tracking Services uses GPS technology, similar to a map application on your cell phone, and then relays that information to a program that the user can check at any time through their computer or mobile device. Data is accessed through Honeywell’s Total Connect Remote Services App, which our existing customers already have access for building or home security controls, video streaming, and energy management.

The tracking components are simple and easy to install; they can be loaded into a vehicle’s on-board diagnostic port or placed elsewhere on the vehicle. The service is available to be sold across the U.S., can be accessed anywhere with a web-enabled device, and they’re easy to manage for virtually anyone.

Our offering of Honeywell Total Connect Tracking Services has been an incredible asset for us and has added to our overall customer satisfaction rate. There’s no doubt, you will quickly consider it an important facet of your security equipment offerings after adding it to your array of services.

Guest Post: How to Keep Rural Schools Safe from Harm

Ken Darr by Ken Darr | 04.20.2015

Ken Darr is Vice President of LowV Systems, Inc.

As a systems integrator, one of the biggest rewards of my career is providing security solutions for schools. Knowing that the work we do at LowV Systems, Inc. is helping keep children and the surrounding community safer makes it all worthwhile.

We recently completed an installation for Penns Valley School District in rural Spring Mills, PA. One of the challenges for this district is that it’s spread out, with about 15 minutes between schools. Working closely with the administration, we created a global system so if an incident were to happen in one building, all buildings would be locked down within a matter of seconds.

If YouTube is blocked, you can view the video here.

From video surveillance to visitor management, the solution brings everything under one platform giving them the ability to go to one interface to pull all the reports in and know that their campus and district is safe. The best way to accomplish this for Penns Valley was with Honeywell’s Pro-Watch. Pro-Watch provides the access control platform so we can integrate all other systems, including LobbyWorks,  the visitor management piece and MAXPRO VMS, a Honeywell Video Management System. The integration of these systems allows for easy video searching based on access, visitor, and intrusion events. What used to be a difficult task is now made easy.

The system also gives school staff more control in who can access the buildings. Visitors are funneled to the main office where Honeywell’s LobbyWorks Visitor Management System requires them to present ID at an office kiosk. LobbyWorks updates the Pro-Watch database with each visitor’s personal information so there is a record of each visit. If access is granted, a badge is issued that visitors must scan at each keypad for entry into the building. Everything ties into Pro-Watch providing a full, integrated system that the district identified as one of their needs.

The most important thing is taking care of a customer and the customer’s needs in the immediate instance. With this installation, I’m proud to say we’ve achieved that for the faculty, students and staff in this rural community. If you’re interested in more details, take a few minutes to watch the video above or read this article featured in Campus Safety.

Vote for Your Favorite Pet in Our Honeywell Total Connect Pet Video Contest

Angela Remmert by Angela Remmert | 04.14.2015

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Last month, we asked all the animal lovers out there to send in a video of their pets doing funny or naughty things for a chance to win an iPad Mini. The judging team had a great time watching all the entries and have selected the top five videos in the Funny and Naughty categories.

Now it’s your chance to get involved!
The videos will be posted for 30 days and those with the most views in each category will be the winners (one in the funny category and one in the naughty category). So take a few minutes to watch the pet videos at this link, and we’ll be announcing the lucky winners after 30 days.

See What’s New at ISC West 2015

Ralph Maniscalco by Ralph Maniscalco | 04.13.2015

This year at ISC West, we have some exciting new things to share. In fact, you’ll notice the difference as soon as you walk into Booth 14025. We’ve totally redesigned the booth and in addition to Honeywell Security Group, you’ll find other Honeywell brands including Fire-Lite Alarms, Silent Knight and System Sensor. Now you can demo the latest end-to-end connected home and buildings technologies for fire alarm and security dealers and integrators, commercial and residential end users, and cabling installation pros in one great location.

ISC West Lyric

Visit Booth 14025 for a preview of the Lyric Smart Home System.

Here Are Just Some of the Must-See Sections:

Lyric Smart Home System: Comprised of the Lyric Smart Controller, Lyric Smart Keypad, Lyric sensors with SiX technology and AlarmNet 360 dealer management portal, the Lyric Smart Home system truly marks the next era of connected home technology.

MAXPRO Cloud: The newest version of Honeywell’s MAXPRO Cloud platform integrates cloud-based video and access management so organizations can significantly streamline multi-site management from anywhere, at any time.

Performance Series High Quality Analog (HQA): Our expanded Performance Series line includes new cameras and DVRs that use high-definition-over-coax technology to provide HD-quality images on analog infrastructures.

Pro-Watch 4.2: Honeywell’s flagship commercial security management system arms dealers with the flexible, scalable and cost-effective integrated visitor management, access control, IP-video surveillance and intrusion system that customers demand.

Smart Wireless Integrated Fire Technology (SWIFT): The wireless fire alarm solutions line from Fire-Lite Alarms offers a host of new tools and technological advancements, presenting dealers with more cost- and time-saving options for challenging installations, as well as many traditional and non-traditional applications.

Guest Post: Protecting a Vital Resource

Logan Harris by Logan Harris | 03.30.2015

Logan Harris is Founder and CEO of SpotterRF.

On April 16th, 2013, snipers opened fire at PG&E Corp’s Metcalf transmission substation. Shooting for 19 minutes, they surgically knocked out 17 giant transformers that funnel power to Silicon Valley. It took utility workers 27 days to make repairs and bring the substation back to life. The perpetrators have not been caught.

stormy-spotterAs highlighted in a report on substation security by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the physical threat to substations is very real. If terrorists coordinated an attack to fire on and destroy nine of our substations and one transformer manufacturer, the entire United States power grid could be offline for more than a year. Nine substations is the equivalent of well under 1% of the number of substations that exist.

The California attack prompted utility companies to prepare for potential risks in the future. In fact, FERC recently sanctioned the revision of perimeter security standards for the physical security of transformers and substations. While many of the 55,000 substations in the United States are equipped with security measures such as fence sensors, thermal cameras, or microwave and passive infrared (PIR) motion sensors – almost none can detect and respond to threats beyond the fence.  So how can large areas beyond the fence line be covered, and with a technology that works day or night, through rain, fog and snow? With a compact surveillance radar or CSR.

Honeywell has partnered with SpotterRF, the leading manufacturer of compact surveillance radar (CSR), that packs up to 300 acres of radar coverage into a device that you can hold in your hand.  CSRs use a single Ethernet cable and less than 10 Watts to monitor anything that moves. The system can differentiate between human activity versus movement of animals or vegetation set in motion by the wind, therefore

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