Combating crime seems to be a never ending battle and a good business will be constantly reviewing its security arrangements.
This will often include changes to alarm systems however changes recommended by alarm companies may not be acceptable to Insurers and there have been a couple of instances where Insurance Companies have not accepted the changes and required additional alterations or even a complete new system. Therefore it is essential that any change to premises security, including changing of Intruder Alarm Service Provider, should be agreed by Insurers BEFORE any works are carried out.
The National Security Inspectorate have kindly written some guidance which can be found below. If you have any questions please speak with your insurance broker who will be able to give you guidance on any security change or update.
For insurance purposes, alarm systems typically need to be installed by competent providers operating to recognised industry standards accepted by the Police. You should check the requirements of your insurance contract. The National Police Chiefs’ Council ‘Police Requirements & Response to Security Systems’ Policy states that other than a crime having been witnessed first-hand, the conditions stipulated for a system to generate a ‘police response’ in the event of activation are as follows:
- The system must be installed and maintained by a company approved by a United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) accredited certification body and a ‘Certificate of Compliance’ to PD 6662 and BS 8243 for your system provided to you by the approved company.
- The monitoring of the alarm must be provided by an approved ‘Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC)’. (You can check the authenticity of the company by asking to see its Certificate of Approval, which you can cross check at the issuing body’s website.)
- Once both of these conditions are fulfilled, an application can be made to the police for the system to be issued with a ‘Unique Reference Number’. This means that if/when the alarm is activated, the ARC will verify the alarm and notify the Police, who will recognise it.
HOW DO I TELL IF OUR BUSINESS’ SECURITY SYSTEM MEETS THESE REQUIREMENTS?
- Check you have a Certificate of Compliance for your system from a UKAS accredited certification body, such as NSI. This is an important document and one to keep safe!
- If you don’t have a copy, please ask your alarm company in the first instance. Ask your alarm company to confirm in writing.
- The ‘Unique Reference Number’ issued by the Police regarding your system
- That under your maintenance contract your system is monitored by an approved ARC.
- NSI approved companies can be found by searching the ‘Find A Company’ directory on the NSI website: www.nsi.org.uk