Author Archive

Introducing Honeywell HD Cameras with Total Connect

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Review of Honeywell HD Cameras

Shield Fire & Security has been looking forward to the release of the Honeywell HD Camera line. Now that they are finally here we have quite a few customers who have them, and we love them! These HD cameras meet our wish list and then some! In the past it has been difficult to find a camera solution that’s:

1. Inexpensive

2. Has a quality picture

3. Easy to install

The HD Cameras meet all three of these guidelines with flying colors. As long as the camera has power and is connected to wifi it is ready to go. I personally love mine to check in on my animals.

 

Honeywell Wifi HD Camera Family

There are three cameras in the Honeywell Wifi HD camera family the C1 indoor, C2 indoor, and C1 outdoor. The two indoor cameras come equipped with smart sound detection. For example detecting a baby’s cry or smoke alarm. All three cameras are connected to wifi and can be integrated with burglar alarms. This integration and technology is important because it allows for remote control of you zwave devices, cameras, and alarm all from the press of a smart phone, tablet, or computer. Examples of zwave devices are automated lights, smart garage door opener, smart thermostat, and a smart lock.

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Lyric C1 Indoor HD Camera 720p

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Lyric C2 Indoor HD Camera 1080p

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Lyric C1 Outdoor HD Camera 1080p

Lyric C1 Indoor HD Camera 720p

Use the C1 Indoor HD Camera for remote management of your home.  The camera’s small size allows it to be place virtually anywhere. Some key features to take from this product is the motion and sound dectect and the night vision. The C1 Indoor HD Camera also comes equipped with:

  • 720p HDC1_LIFESTYLE_01_640x640_image
  • Wide-Angle View
  • 5x In-App Zoom
  • Two Adjustable Alert Zones
  • Motion & Sound Detection
  • Two-Way Audio
  • Night Vision
  • Versatile App
  • 24/7 Live Video
  • Smart Mobile
  • Alerts
  • 256-Bit Encryption
  • Adapts to Your Location or Use Home & Away Modes
  • Options available for 7-day or 30-day video storage
  • Burglar alarm integration

Lyric C2 Indoor HD Camera 1080pSound Detection

My personal favorite on the camera line is the C2 Indoor Camera. I set up this camera not only to alert me of intruders, but also to detect if my smoke detector goes off. I have friends who use their camera as a baby monitor. When the baby cries you are immediately notified on your smart phone and/or tablet. The C2 come equipped with a mount and can rotate to get the perfect view. The C2 HD Camera has the the following features:

  • 1080p Full HD
  • 145° Wide-Angle View
  • 6x Zoom
  • Four Adjustable Alert Zones
  • Motion & Sound Detection
  • Two-Way Audio
  • Night Vision
  • Flexible mounting on wall or table top
  • Plug-in power
  • Not professionally monitored
  • Versatile App
  • 24/7 Live Video
  • Smart Mobile
  • Alerts
  • 256-Bit Encryption
  • Adapts to Your Location or Use Home & Away Modes
  • Options available for 7-day or 30-day video storage
  • Burglar alarm integration

Lyric C1 Outdoor HD Camera 1080p

The C1 Outdoor Camera is an exceptional camera to have overlooking your door, your backyard, and/or your driveway. By having an outdoor camera you are deterring criminals and theft. There are many who use it to make sure their children get home on time. The outdoor camera has all the following features:IPCAM-WOC1-1

  • 1080p Full HD
  • 30 frames per second and offers a
  • Wide-angled view
  • Four detection zones
  • Weather-resistant design
  • Night vision
  • Infrared range of up to 65 feet
  • Plug-in power
  • Not professionally monitored
  • Versatile App
  • 24/7 Live Video
  • Smart Mobile
  • Alerts
  • 256-Bit Encryption
  • Built-in SD card
  • Options available for 7-day or 30-day video storage
  • Burglar alarm integration

 

 

HOA Security Guide

HOA Security is one of those topics that is always being discussed. When a group of people live in the same area they tend to need a board that focuses on the ongoing struggles the community faces. One of the biggest concerns a HOA will have is security. Security can have different meanings. Shield Fire & Security works with HOAs to find out what security means to them and how we can help.

How to Secure HOAs?

Securing HOAs is a very broad subject. There are many ways to increase HOA security, but you have to see what is most important in your area. This is why boards meet roughly every quarter to discuss the issues that are arising in their communities. If HOAs spend their time and resources on items that are not necessarily an issue they won’t have the resources left for items that are truly concerning. For example maybe an apartment complex has a dark corner of the complex that always gets vandalized. A HOA manager should consider addressing that issue before maybe fixing a crack in the side walk. What I’m going to do is give my expert opinion on what HOAs should be focusing on when it comes to security.

Property Management and HOA security

As you know you have a big job securing your communities. Many times there are multiple properties involved, and your job gets hectic. Shield Fire & Security works with HOAs almost every day so we know how full your “To Do List” can be. I’ll make this easy for you, here is a list of common security issues property managers and HOAs face, and Shield Fire & Security’s solution:

  • Vandalism at the community’s pool.
  • Vandalism at the community’s gates.
  • Unwanted visitors.
  • Fires
  • Theft

Vandalism at the community’s pool

The obvious solution is to discipline our kids and let them know this behavior is not okay, but hey this isn’t a parenting guideline blog. Shield Fire & Security always recommends a video surveillance system equipped with notifications. Many locations have video surveillance at the pool, but they are outdated. The outdated video surveillance systems always have problems like white out faces, fuzziness, glitching, and the most favorite blacking out. With an updated system you can finally catch the faces of the perpetrators. Many times we can use your existing wiring, and just replace your old cameras with new ones. The good news about these cameras is they normally come equipped with notifications. Now if there is movement at 11 pm on a Wednesday at the pool you can get a text and/or email with a video clip of the person there.

Vandalism to the community’s gates

Gate vandalism is also huge problem in communities. What can you do to prevent it though? You can’t install an electric fence like you want to do. The only option to prevent vandalism is deter people from harming the gate. You can hang a sign saying, “Warning trespassers and vandals will be prosecuted”. In addition to the sign you can install a camera overlooking the gate. Many communities had reservations about installing a camera by the gate because it wasn’t cost effective. In the past your only choice to have a camera by the gate was to trench the wire from the DVR/NVR to the gate. Now there are a cloud hosted cameras and even solar power cameras making it more cost effective than ever.

Unwanted Visitors

Unwanted visitors are problematic to HOAs for a number of reason. can be detered by having a pinhole camera installed into your pass code box by your gate.  This camera will catch the faces of all members that come into the community. The camera is virtually undetectable and depending on the camera gives a great picture even in the dark! If your community has a lot of unwanted visitors we recommend an on-property security guard as well.

Fires

A fire is one of the most devastating events that can happen. Shield Fire & Security recommends following all city guidelines. City of Las Vegas Guidelines Guidelines and fire codes help prevent fires and preventing fires is serious business here in Nevada. The City of Las Vegas also provides information sheets based on your industry. If you are not located in Las Vegas please refer to your city’s fire guidelines.

Fire alarms are often needed for commercial buildings and large homes. If a fire alarm is needed in your building often times monitoring that fire alarm is a must. Preventing fires is a top priority and if you ever have questions in regards to a fire alarm system Shield Fire & Security would love to assist. We install and provide annual inspections for fire alarms, and we also monitor fire alarms and sprinkler systems.

Theft

Einbrecher dringt in ein Haus ein.

The word “theft” also has a broad meaning. HOAs are concerned with any and all theft such as: auto theft, home burglary, public property theft, etc. If theft is a problem in your community we recommend a neighborhood watch, and possibly a security guard.

We also suggest teaming with a security company such as Shield Fire & Security. Teaming with us would give all of your residences a point of contact to secure their home. Teaming with us would also mean high discounts for you and you residences. To find out more about our Partnership program fill out a contact form on our site or give us a all at 702-570-6221.

 

Shield Fire & Security Works with HOAs

Shield Fire & Security is equipped with the knowledge and know-how to work with your HOA. We have worked with many HOA boards, and understand HOA processes. Most importantly we would love the opportunity to speak with you.

 

Reach Shield Fire & Security by our contact form or calling us at 702-570-6221. 

 

Prevent Holiday Theft

Holiday season has been in full swing. Half of us are happily singing holiday songs while the other half is rushing off to finish our gift shopping. Regardless of what holiday you celebrate most of us have been taking advantage of the holiday sales. How could you not? The sales amazing this time of year! What I want to bring to your attention today is if you are shopping then you are getting new shiny things. Criminals and thieves just so happen to love new shiny things. This means if you and your family want to keep your new shiny things safe you need to protect yourself from theft. Shield Fire & Security is going to give you a holiday theft protection crash course.

Here are 5 tips to prevent holiday theft:

  1. Breakdown Boxes
  2. Wait till trash day to get rid of anything
  3. Keep gifts away from windows
  4. Leave your expensive items at home while shopping.
  5. Install a security system

Prevent theft by….Breakdown Boxes

Let’s say your family just finished unwrapping holiday gifts. Naturally you are looking to throw away your trash in your garbage outside. The boxes however won’t fit in your garbage can so you just put them on the side. If you put your boxes outside in the open then everyone can see what you just added to your home. Boxes bring attention to what your family has inside.  We recommend breaking down the boxes as much as possible. Turning the boxes inside out is also helpful or even stuffing them into black bags.

Prevent theft by….Waiting till trash day to get rid of anything

There are going to be items you cannot fit in your garbage can. Limited space is just inevitable. This is why my next tip isn’t very favorable, but hear me out….or read me out I should say…

Wait till trash day to get rid of anything. Find somewhere to put all of your goody wrappers out of sight until the garbage man comes. You want to do this so no one sees what your family just got as gifts. Thieves love to scope out their next target. They are not above looking into your trash just to see if you have anything worth taking. I know waiting to throw away your trash is super hard to do when you have so much of it, but it might save you against a burglary.

Prevent theft by…Keeping gifts away from the windows

Keep your gifts away from the windows. In some homes this is hard to do, but it’s imperative. I know for many families it is kind of the thing to have the family Christmas tree in the window. I definitely don’t blame you. I spend a lot of time on my Christmas tree and show it to anyone who comes over. Christmas trees are just peeerrrfect. If you put your Christmas tree by your window then people are intrigued see all the gifts you have under it. You don’t want people peering into your window to see how many gifts you have because that attracts unwanted visitors. Not only should you keep gifts away from the windows, but

you should keep anything of value out of site.

As I’m sure you guessed thieves look through the window to access your home. If it’s impossible to keep your valuables away from the window I would recommend thick curtains. Many people can see through blinds at certain angles so having just blinds is not ideal.

 

Prevent Theft by…Leaving valuables at home when shopping

This tip is a little off from the others, but it’s equally as important. Leave your valuables at home when you are shopping. Apparently during the holiday season there are thieves that target us while we are shopping! I know. I did not believe it either until it happened to me.

My husband and I were at the mall and there were a couple guys following us. My husband noticed it right away and pointed it out. We slowed down a bit to see if they would pass us. Then we heard them talking about my purse, and his watch. My husband of course was prepared for them. They were just a couple of punk teenagers, and we weren’t phased by them. However, all I could think is what if I had been by myself and they bombarded me? I would have rather just brought a cheap purse that day rather than be a target for a robbery. It is insane to me that people are that bold. The mass amount of people in the mall should be a deterrent, but of course it’s not. I suggest to keep your jewelry, purses, and watches at home.

Prevent Theft by…Installing a Security System

I know I know you just think I’m saying this because I’m with Shield Fire & Security, but seriously I’m not. Adding a security system to your home is one of the best things you can do to deter theft. Security systems are just one of those items that should just come with your house. When buying a house it should have walls, power, running water, floors, and an alarm!

Let me tell you why I love having an alarm in my house. There are several reason, but I will try to keep this short by telling you a story. One day my husband was out of town on business. I was home alone with my dogs, and all of a sudden my normally quiet dog just starts barking out of control. I quickly barricaded myself in my room and turned my alarm system on away. (For those who don’t have an alarm, arming the system Away arms all the devices including motions instead of just perimeter devices). I wasn’t sure if someone was in my home so if I armed my system away I knew one of my motions would go off, and help would soon be on its way.

When you watch a scary movie you always see that one person that goes to check out the strange noise. I’m definitely not that person. I’m always the one yelling at that person. Whether you are like me or you investigate with a gun, an alarm will confirm where someone is in your house. There is no more checking on random noises or wandering the house in your underwear. An alarm gives you peace of mind.

Shield Fire & Security

We wish you all happy holidays at Shield Fire & Security. If you have any questions or concerns give us a call at 702-570-6221 or contact us here. Stay safe everyone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gym Security Guide for Owners/Managers

Gyms security and thieves

Gym security is not something gym owners think about very often because generally thieves don’t target gyms.

Why wouldn’t thieves steal from Gyms?

  1. There isn’t enough cash on-site.
  2. The machines are too heavy to move.
  3. Resale price of exercise equipment is just not worth the effort to resell.
  4. Many gyms are 24/7 and always have someone there.

I know what you are thinking…Why are you writing this article if Gyms don’t need security from theft?  Well just because thieves don’t target gyms doesn’t mean physical break-ins don’t happen.

In my opinion all businesses need at least a monitored alarm system. An alarm is especially important for 24/7 facilities (like gyms). For example Shield Fire & Security has a customer whose employee was held at gunpoint at a 24/7 facility. She was able to hit a panic button to notify the authorities that she was in trouble. The woman’s life was saved, and she is very thankful the business owner had the alarm for her safety.

Now that my alarm tangent is over let me go over the kind of theft Gyms have….

Gym Security against unconventional theft

It’s that time of year where we are all thinking about our new year resolutions. My top resolution is to go to the gym more. Obviously many others share this same resolution every year; otherwise my gym wouldn’t be packed with people every time the first of the year rolled around. This influx of people is what generally causes a gyms’ service to be abused. Gym members are difficult to track when they come in, especially if there’s always a lot of people coming in at once. There are unfortunately people who see the gym is very busy and take advantage by sneaking their friends in for free. If people get into the gym without the owner or manager knowing this causes a huge liability issue. The members “sneaking in” did not sign an agreement with the gym so if they get hurt the gym could be liable.

Shield Fire & Security can prevent this liability gamble by installing a video camera, and an access control card reader where members enter the building. These two devices intertwine together on a secure cloud hosted system called Brivo OnAir. The card reader only let’s in authorized members at the times the owner or manager designates. The camera will catch all visitors on clear crisp video whether it’s day or night. With Brivo OnAir you can have a video clip taken when the door opens, and can send a clip to your phone and/or email. If you are only concerned with visitors at night you can set a rule to only send clips at night. The Brivo OnAir app also allows you to login and see a full history of your card reader and video footage.

Gym Security for Employees

Let’s circle back to gym security for employees. I know we discussed this a bit earlier, but it’s an important topic to discuss with any business. Protecting your employees is imperative. Something that is not replaceable and insured is someone’s life.

Video surveillance system is a great thing to have as well as the panic button as I discussed earlier. Every gym in my opinion should have both of these items. Video surveillance will record any accidents that take place, for example someone pulling a muscle or hurting themselves on a machine. The panic button will make sure authorities and the owner/manager are contacted immediately in the event of an emergency. This event could be an unruly or dangerous person at the gym, someone having a heart attack, someone coming in without authorization, etc. Every business owner needs to be prepared for a an emergency whether it’s for insurance purposes, lawsuits, or overall safety. Having one of these security devices could save you 1000’s of dollars.

Gym Professional Security 

Shield Fire & Security installs state-of-the art video surveillance systems, access control systems, burglar alarm systems, and fire alarm systems. Contact us today to pursue a security system for your business and/or home at 702-570-6221 or by clicking here. We give free quotes, and will walk your facility to tailor your security system to fit your needs. Shield Fire & Security urges you to have security equipment installed by a professional to ensure you get the quality and coverage you are looking for in an emergency.

Healthcare Facility Security

Healthcare Facility Security

Healthcare facilities are always under the security microscope. These facilities are not easy to run because of all the guidelines and parameters set in place:

  • Personal information must be protected.
  • Medications must be safeguarded.
  • Patients have to be in safe environments.
  • Employees can only be in certain areas of the building

In the past the security industry recognized healthcare law expansion as a knowledge gap for security. Today there is so much technology that could create a robust security system, yet one of the hardest parts is showing the value of this security to facility managers.

Today I will be discussing Eagle Eye Networks Video Surveillance and Brivo OnAir Access Control. Shield Fire & Security has customers that are just absolutely wowed by Eagle Eye Networks and Brivo OnAir.

Eagle Eye Networks Video Surveillance

Eagle Eye Networks is a cloud-based video surveillance system. Shield Fire & Security loves using Eagle Eye Networks because it’s compatible with the Brivo OnAir access control system. This means you can remotely control your video surveillance system and access control system all on one platform. The cloud-based hosting also allows you to remotely access your systems from both your smart phone and computer from anywhere.

Eagle Eye Networks can work as so much more than a video surveillance system. For example parameters can be set so if a door is opened you will get a video clip sent to your phone every time someone goes through it. Times and schedules can be set up for alerts. Also, if an event occurs and you need to provide video to authorities that video can be easily uploaded to a USB drive.

Eagle Eye and Healthcare Facilities?

Healthcare Facilities love Eagle Eye video surveillance because the various IP cameras it is compatible with, and the versatility the cloud hosted system offers. Healthcare facilities need to keep constant video surveillance of pretty much every nook and cranny. This causes unnecessary use of the NVR. IP cameras that are connected to the Eagle Eye Bridge only record when there is movement. The record upon movement feature saves from pointless recording and allows you to increase memory storage at your leisure instead of buying a whole new NVR like “normal” camera systems. This feature alone has saved customers everywhere quite a bit of money.

Managers and doctors love the remote access of the video system. Logging into the system is so easy. Not only can you see your video from anywhere you can also assign users, and give them access to only certain video cameras in the system. They can also have notifications set up for certain time frames. For example in almost every healthcare facility there is a pharmaceuticals area. If someone accesses that area after business hours you can have a video clip sent right to your phone and/or email.

BRIVO OnAir Access Control Systems

Businessman entering safe code to unlock the door.

Brivo OnAir is a cloud hosted access control system. An access control system, for those of you who are not familiar, is electrified hardware that is added to doors to control when a door opens. Most systems use programmed key fobs or programmed cards to open a door, but there is such thing as mobile pass (access card on your phone) or opening a door from the Brivo OnAir app.

Just like Eagle Eye Networks Brivo OnAir is accessible from your phone or computer anywhere. As I mentioned earlier Eagle Eye actually integrates with the Brivo OnAir service so you can see both systems at the same time. Alerts and notifications can be set up intertwining your video surveillance system and your access control system.

Brivo OnAir and Healthcare Facilities

Access control systems are used in many Healthcare Facilities, so what’s so great about Brivo OnAir? Brivo OnAir

makes everything easy for end users. Older access control systems made it difficult to manage users on the system also in many cases you couldn’t assign each person to certain doors. That’s right, with Brivo OnAir you can pick and choose which users can access what doors, and get notifications if someone with the wrong credentials accessed the door.

Many Facilities also want to know when someone accessed a door. Brivo OnAir keeps an ongoing history of each door. Brivo will keep track of what time and what user accessed each door. This makes managing employees amazingly easy. Everyone is where they are supposed to be, at the time they said they’d be there, and if they aren’t you can get a notification straight to your phone and or email.

Eagle Eye Networks and Brivo OnAir For You

If you are interested in a video surveillance system or an access control system Shield Fire & Security can definitely help you. We give free consultations and will come right out to you. If you have any additional questions give us a call at 702-570-6221 or click here to send us an inquiry.

 

 

 

 

Heat Detector versus Smoke Detector

What is the difference between a heat detector and a smoke detector? This question comes up all the time in our industry. There is many people who think they accomplish the same thing which is detect fire. While this is true there is a big difference between the two.

Smoke Detector

System Sensor 4WTA-B Smoke Detector

Smoke Detectors are designed to protect people and buildings during the early signs of fire. Some fires do not accumulate a flame until after it has been burning for awhile. While there is no flame to indicate a fire there is smoke. Smoke or poisonous fumes are the leading cause of harm during a fire. This makes smoke detectors crucial for homes and occupied businesses.



Heat Detector

Honeywell H355 Heat Detector

Heat Detectors are designed to sense temperature change cause by fire. Fire causes detrimental damage to buildings. Detecting fire heat is very important to make sure a fire does not get out of control. Heat detectors are mostly for buildings where the building is the main concern.

Why do we still see Heat Detectors?

You might wonder why we still use heat detectors if smoke detectors are meant to protect people? Heat detectors are used when the primary focus is building protection. In some cases heat detectors are also used because of the low cost, and the reliability against extreme conditions. Also, they are often used to trigger fire sprinkler systems or fire suppression systems. If a smoke detector was hooked up to a sprinkler system it could trigger the water during a false alarm, and water damage your building.

A smoke detectors’ mentality is to go into alarm at the first sign of smoke. If you were to compare a smoke detector and a heat detector, the smoke detector would always be the one to “cry wolf”. As I’m sure you know (from the smoke detectors in your home) they are known to make false alarms.

Are false alarms worth having a smoke detector in a residence?

Yes. Yes. One hundred percent yes. It is not only law to have smoke detectors throughout your home, but our expert opinion. Early detection is crucial in homes. Like we discussed earlier smoke is almost always the culprit of harm during fires. It only takes one inhale to cause damage to your respiratory system. Our bodies need oxygen to function.

If there is a fire that means that fire is burning the oxygen, and creating smoke from the things the fire is burning. That fire can burn many things in your home that results in smoke. Smoke can in turn contain poisonous gases such as carbon monoxide and cyanide. If you are breathing the smoke or poisonous gases you will pass out, or worse die in a just a few minutes. Fire is no joke and the faster you can detect fire the safer you will be.

Are there hybrids of smoke detectors and heat detectors?

Honeywell 5808W3 heat/smoke detector

There are definite pluses to both detectors. So naturally you want both! Shield Fire & Security can get you both in one detector. They are called smoke/heat detectors. I know what you are thinking. Why would I go into detail about smoke detectors versus heat detectors if there’s one that does both jobs? Well, I want you to know that there are detectors out there that don’t do both. I want you to be educated on the product you are buying for the protection of your family and business. In an emergency you are going to really appreciate a detector that does the job you set out for it to do.

“I’m good, I already have smoke detectors.”

Ideally, I want you to contact us at Shield Fire & Security so that way you definitely get the right detector for you, and you don’t have false assumptions on what the detector can do. I want you to contact us so we can monitor this detector for you 24/7. In the event of a fire not only will your detector go into an alarm, but you will also be notified and have the authorities called. Notification of a fire is very important when you are not home.

I’m not trying to scare you, but really think about that for a second. What would happen if you were not home during a fire? How would you know? You wouldn’t. You would need to depend on neighbors to call the authorities. Who would know you have children or pets inside? They wouldn’t. You are the first person that should know there is a fire in your home and/or business. You are the best person to help authorities stop a fire.

“I want monitored smoke/heat detectors.”

Contact a fire security specialist at Shield Fire & Security 702-570-6221 or contact us here. Fire security is one of the most important services we offer. We find fire security so important that we put “fire” in our name. Shield installs a smoke detectors, heat sensors, carbon monoxide detectors, and fire alarm in your home or business.

 

Did you know that there is one home fire every 90 seconds?

Find out more fire facts on NFPA site: http://www.nfpa.org/News-and-Research/Fire-statistics-and-reports/Fire-statistics/Fires-in-the-US

 

August Smart Lock

Unlock and Lock your home, manage key-less entry for all users, and view event history from anywhere in the world with your August Smart Lock! The August Smart Lock is compatible with both Android and IOS devices. This makes the lock easily accessible on your smart phone and tablet. The lock comes silver or bronze and can link to Honeywell’s Total Connect 2.0. If you are a current customer of Shield Fire & Security ask us how you can add the August Smart Lock to your account by calling 702-570-6221 or check out our request a quote page.

Remotely Manage the August Smart Lock

The August Connect Wi-Fi bridge allows for remote management of your home. Remotely access your August Smart lock from anywhere through Honeywell’s Total Connect app or through the August app. You can lock or unlock the door, add/delete users, and assign access schedules to certain users.

When the August Smart lock is connected to Total Connect you can intertwine it with other devices. For example if you have a Video Skybell your visitors are video verified, and you can then proceed to unlock the door from the same app. Another customer favorite is having your door set to automatically unlock when you enter a certain distance from your house. This feature is called geo fencing and comes in handy especially when you are bringing in groceries.

Contact Shield Fire & Security to make your home a smart home: 702-570-6221 or go to our contact page.

No More Key Copying

Give access to family members, friends, service providers, etc. without ever making a copy of a key again. No more worrying about lost keys or someone just walking in unauthorized. You can manage it all from the touch of your phone. A notification is also sent every time someone unlocks or locks your door. Notifications keep you informed about who is coming and going and at what time. Parents find this perfect to see when their kids coming home from school.

Is Your Door Locked?

We have all had that moment of uncertainty when it came to locking our door. I used to find myself saying, “Did I lock my door? I was in a huge rush this morning.” If you are anything like me then this is a question you won’t ask yourself ever again. The August Smart Lock tells you when your home is unlocked from the convenience of your August App or Total Connect App. A notification can also be sent if you leave your geo-fence area (as mentioned earlier in this article).

There is also the auto lock option. Your August Smart Lock can automatically lock and unlock itself upon arrival and departure of your home. That makes things even easier because you never even have to pull out your phone or touch the lock.

Easy Installation

No one has time to spend hours figuring out how to be a locksmith, and that’s what usually ends up happening when installing smart locks. Locks are finicky and only fit on certain doors. Shield Fire & Security has seen many locks. We install all different kinds of locks on a daily basis. In our experience the August Lock is the most simple to install. The August Lock just goes right over your dead bolt. This means almost anyone can install the lock.

***If you want the lock to intertwine with your third party app such as Total Connect you will need to contact your security provider.

If you are a current customer of Shield Fire & Security ask us how you can add the August Smart Lock to your account by calling 702-570-6221 or check out our request a quote page.

Video Camera Features

Video cameras are a broad topic. Today’s technology has advanced vastly from the analog CCTV systems that everyday business owners are used to.  In this article we are going to discuss the following features video cameras can offer:

  • Smart IR
  • Turbo HD
  • WDR
  • IR

Smart IR Video Cameras

Have you ever looked over footage on video cameras, and there was a white face? The face was so white you couldn’t tell who they were. This was and still is a common issue with video cameras. White faces occur because a person gets too close to the IR LEDs of the night vision camera. This occurs even when the video camera is recording a 65 foot IR range. If a person can approach the camera this issue is going to occur.

Smart IR solves this white face dilemma by automatically adjusting the video camera’s intensity of the infrared LEDs when an object approaches. Smart IR technology is built right into a video camera. This feature is unfortunately not an attachment or software update for existing cameras. The Smart IR feature has become crucial for almost every business owner who wants night video surveillance because it makes catching criminals so much easier.

Check out Vivotek’s site for a better understanding of Smart IR!

Turbo HD Video Cameras

Turbo HD cameras provide high-definition megapixel video. I know what you are thinking. Why is this special? Turbo HD supports up to 1080p resolution at distances over 1500 feet, has immunity to electromagnetic interference, live video can be view in high resolution with zero latency because the stream is uncompressed, and has Bi-directional signalling that allows for PTZ control and setting camera functions remotely.

Previous HD video over coax methods have continuously struggled with these features.  They have been just plain out unreliable due to distance and lack of bi-directional communications. That’s what make Turbo HD so innovative because it solves so many issues old cameras were having.

Hikvision does a great job at explaining this concept watch the following video for a visual explanation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCXmWl0AJdY

WDR Video Cameras

Also known as “Wide Dynamic Range”. WDR cameras have special software that allows them to balance lighting into one clear image. This alleviates dark spots in the video and shows more vivid details. Many cameras have trouble recording underexposed and overexposed images because they are designed to record the middle area of light between very dark and very bright.

WDR uses tone mapping which lets the camera automatically brightens dare areas and darkens light areas. The software can also capture several images of the scene at different exposure levels. This allows the video camera to collect identical images both underexposed and overexposed and to take the best parts of each image.

IR Video Cameras

IR cameras sense infrared energy (heat) and converts it into an electronic signal. This electronic signal is then processed to produce an image on a video monitor and to preform temperature calculations. IR cameras allow you to monitor thermal performance.

 

More information on Video Cameras

Shield Fire & Security specializes in video surveillance. Click here to find out more information or contact us at 702-570-6221 to talk to a security specialist. We also offer a free security analysis for you business or home.

Video Surveillance Prevents Crime and Now Fires

Video surveillance cameras are now detecting fires in Nevada. Wild fires have been on everyone’s mind with the recent devastation in California. The biggest question that has been on our mind is, “Is Nevada taking preventative measures for fires in our home state, and is it working?”

Amazingly enough the answer to that question is, yes, Nevada is taking preventative measures for fires. More than 30 cameras have been placed throughout Nevada’s forests. These strategically located cameras have spotted over 200 wild fires. In many situations these fires would have not been caught until they had burned on for several acres.

Video Surveillance Systems

Axis video camera

Before we go into how important fire detection cameras are we need to discuss what a video surveillance system is.

A group of cameras recorded in a central storage place is, in short, a video surveillance system. Each camera has its own area to cover and is constantly recording its area. There are numerous camera features. In this instance we are discussing fire detecting cameras.

Fire Detection Importance

Catching fires while they are small is imperative. As I’m sure you’ve guessed fires are easiest to contain the smaller they are. In the past, communities have depended on people reporting fires as they see them. Having people report fires is still crucial to stopping wild fires, but there are a couple flaws with solely relying on the public to report fires:

  • Explaining geographically where the fire is – Many times when reporting a fire it is in the middle of no where. How do you tell authorities where the fire is when you’re just passing through on travel? How do you tell the authorities if you don’t know the area?
  • Time it takes to report the fire – Like I said in the previous bullet point fires can be in the middle of no where. That means it takes time to get to them. Even if you are given the exact coordinates fire stations are not setup in the middle of no where.
  • Whether or not someone actually reports it – Fires will go unreported at times. Some people don’t realize when they see a fire on the side of the road. They think maybe it is campers. Others don’t report fires because they assume someone is already is reporting it.

How do fire detection video surveillance cameras work?

Fire detection cameras have built in

  • Pan/tilt
  • Automatic zoom
  • Smoke recognition/detection
  • Night detection
  • Scene change detection

The cameras are monitored 24/7 by operators. Operators are sent a notifications by the camera if there is a fire detection. In addition to the 24/7 monitoring anyone can go to, http://www.alertwildfire.org/blmnv/ and see the cameras for all of Nevada.

 

Information on Video Surveillance Systems

Video surveillance is a passion of Shield Fire & Security. Whenever we find cool technology advancement we like to share it with everyone. If this article sparked your interest for a video surveillance system of your own get a free security assesment here or if you are just looking for more information click here.

 

Small Business Cyber Security

 

Small Business Cyber Security

Today Shield Fire & Security is going to discuss the importance of cyber security for small businesses. Cyber Security is important in our everyday business activity because we use computers for almost everything we do. Shield sends emails, manages customer accounts, program systems, and manages its accounting all on computers. We want to stress the importance of cyber security to our fellow small business community, so we came up with a list of precautions your business can take.

 

10 Steps to Take for Small Business Cyber Security

(1) Educate and train employees on safe security practices

  • Create a policy for passwords that requires them to be strong i.e. 8 characters, 1 capital letter, 1 special character.
  • Establish appropriate internet use guidelines browsing
  • Policies regarding sensitive information must be in place.
  • Rules and penalties must be in place in case policies or guidelines are violated.

 

(2) Prevent Cyber attacks on information, computers, and networks

  • Download antivirus software and run scans regularly.
  • Update software and browsers as often as possible especially after running an antivirus scan.

(3) Download a firewall for your internet connection

(Firewalls prevent outsiders from breaking into your private network)

  • Firewalls can be enabled on your operating system or you can download a free firewall software online
  • Require firewalls for employee home networks

(4) Protect your mobile devices

  • Require employees to set a password, encrypt their sensitive company data, and install security apps to help protect the phone when on public networks.
  • Create a procedure for if a phone is stolen i.e. have pictures of the phone, record the serial number, record the model, a have process to report the stolen phone to the police.

(5) Run back ups or create copies of important company data

  • Backup computers regularly
  • Schedule automatic backups if at all possible especially for financial or HR documents.

(6) Restrict access to computers

  • Require strong passwords
  • Prevent use of computers from unauthorized users
  • Lock up computers when unattended
  • Admin privileges should only be for IT staff and key personel

(7) Secure Wifi network

  • Hide and encrypt your wifi
  • Set up your router to not broadcast the name of your network
  • Password protect your router

(8) Handle payments securely

  • Trust only secure merchants
  • Process payments on a separate then the one you surf the internet on

(9) Limit authorized employees

  • Allow only certain employees to install software.
  • Authorize employees for information that’s needed for their job

(10) Strong passwords and authorizations

  • Employees should choose unique passwords every three months especially to access financial information
  • Implement multi-factor authentication when possible. (additional information past a normal password) 

Why is Cyber Security Important for Small Businesses?

Cyber security is extremely important for small businesses because they usually are easy targets.  A Large company will tend to have people in place to prevent cyber attacks whereas a small business will not. Many small businesses also have the mindset that cyber security isn’t important because “why would they want my business’ information when there’s so many other larger businesses out there.” What business owners everywhere don’t realize is having that mindset about cyber security is what makes you a prime target.

Think about it. Hackers everywhere have to start somewhere. They pray on those who are not prepared because it will be the easiest. If your business is compromised they potentially have everything about your business i.e. your bank account information, customer financial information, names, socials, customer data base, etc. Even if you are convinced that your business is safe from this happening it doesn’t hurt to take precautions.

Additional resources about Cyber Security

 

Blog

**Please note Shield Fire & Security specializes in security systems. We are not a cyber security company, and cannot protect you from cyber attacks. The intent of this blog is to share information with our fellow small business community that we have found out in the process of owning a business. Please do not take this blog as a guarantee of safety from cyber attacks. This information is just some of the things you can do to protect your business.