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Locksmith Clippings and Musings August 2016 by Helen Duval

While we look to see where the safer waters may lie from a fiscal point of view after the Bank of England cut the base rate to 25%, it is undeniably uncertain times for most businesses.  Mark Carney’s decision will undoubtedly encourage more borrowing and less saving but is this good for business?

Well for the locksmithing industry it seems to be heads down and business as usual with a number of new innovations and developments recently introduced by market leaders.  There is also a very positive vibe about the industry with much on the security radar that bodes well as exhibition season once again is picking up.

UK Construction Week (UKCW) will once again run from 18-20 October at the NEC with Grand Designs Live open to the trade on 19-20 October. The impressive line up consists of nine shows: Timber Expo, Build Show, Civils Expo, Plant & Machinery Live, Energy 2016, Smart Buildings 2016, Surface & Materials Show and HVAC 2016.…so definitely some dates for your diary.  With no MLA Expo this year the Lockex exhibition at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry is an alternative event that will be of interest to the Locksmith industry.

With security becoming an increasingly important part of every day life,  it was surprising to read recently that in research carried out by YouGov for security provider RISCO up to 49% of British householders who have a house alarm fitted, don’t actually turn it on when they go away on holiday.

In a survey of 4,237 people it was found that less than a third have a burglar alarm fitted with only 49% of those that do actually turning it on when they go on vacation leaving their homes susceptible to break ins and burglaries.

Steve Riley, Commercial Director at RISCO Group UK commented “British householders could face more than a bad case of sunburn when they return home from holiday this summer.  There were an estimated 800,000 domestic burglaries in 2014/2015, resulting in an average loss per incident of £2,267 and damage costing £892.”

“We are urging those that have an alarm to make sure it is working and switched on when they close the front door and head off on holiday this summer.”

There is also a knock on effect too, as in relation to home insurance homeowners could potentially be left without cover if they don’t use their alarms systems.

RISCO’s offer the SmartAlarm as a solution which can be operated from a smartphone app and controlled remotely with a few simple swipes on a smartphone.  Further information on the survey is available at: http://www.causeforalarm.co.uk/

The RISCO Group, recently were recognised for their efforts within the sector at PSI Premier Awards 2016, in Welwyn Garden City. VUpoint, the company’s revolutionary live video verification solution, won Software Product of the Year Award.

Voted for by more than 3,000 people online the VUpoint provides a number of features and benefits including simple installation and live video monitoring for end users and monitoring centres.

Last year the company was recognised for achievements in the Intruder Product of the Year category with Agility™3 – a smart wireless security and safety system.  This had been preceded by success with the LightSYS™2 professional hybrid system in 2014 which offers advanced IP and GSM/GPRS or STU adaptor communication, as well as a choice of wired, wireless or bus detectors.

RISCO Group has a longstanding relationship with Microsoft and therefore fully understands the implications of the cloud model and designs solutions that deliver a higher level of security than many traditional on-premises solutions.

VUpoint is due to be integrated into RISCO Group’s soon to be launched range of SmartHome products, as well as its ProSYS Plus G3 panel.  which offers single hardware platform with a unique licensing mechanism – allowing virtually unlimited scalability for any size of installation up to 512 zones.

‘This year marks the third in a row that our technology has been recognised at the PSI Premier Awards – something that we’re incredibly proud of,’ said Steve Riley, Commercial Director UK&I at RISCO Group. ‘Along with Agility™3 and LightSYS™2, VUpoint is part of a trio of solutions that are helping to maximise the potential of the cloud. We see this as just the beginning of what’s possible with the cloud and aim to remain at the forefront of shaping how this technology can help protect people, property and assets.’

In another interesting survey which was conducted by Truedor.co.uk earlier this year, 2,000 people considered that Burglar Alarms and CCTV were the best deterrents in relation to attempted burglaries.

Out of 397,643 registered burglaries in England and Wales, 277,300 investigations have so far been completed with no suspect identified.  79,635 cases are still ongoing which would seem to demonstrate that preventing a break in is far more viable than installing systems after the event.

Clive Stewart, Chairman of the Essex County Neighbourhood Watch Association commented:

“There are many households that do not take specific care to lock their UPVC doors sufficiently despite having reminders from the Police.

The Police can only keep up the practice of sending out messages to remind people to protect their own property and also help those who may feel vulnerable.  Then it is up to everyone to try their very best.”

Truedor offer Truly Secure composite doors, fitted with high security multi-point locking systems as standard. To take the security of their composite doors to an even higher level, they also fit specially designed dog bolt system as standard.

It would seem that some secondary schools have focused on security recently with one in particular installing a new, advanced wireless system.

Heath Park School, a mixed secondary school and sixth form has installed a modern electronic access control solution from Tate Solutions Ltd, which specialises in access controls and security.

The school which recently located to a new campus in Wolverhampton, has 1300 students and 140 teachers and support staff.

Keith Clare-Brown, director at Tate Solutions commented “School security is probably one of the most sensitive issues facing today’s head teachers and trustees. Problems can happen very quickly due to a wide range of incidents including strangers coming into the school, violent actions by children, parents or staff, burglary, theft and arson to name but a few”.

“With this in mind pupils need to know they have a safe place in which to be educated and that staff are in a safe place in which to work. Delivering on that is a given but it is not always easy to achieve”.

Keith added “Further problems arise from the fact that while everyone wants their school to be safe, no-one wants it to end up looking look like a prison with high walls and fences. While all of this may make a building secure, it is not user friendly.  Our aim was to achieve a sensible balance, implementing sufficient levels of security to cope with perceived threats while providing a pleasant environment in which to learn and work”.

The XS4 solution provides greater security with a state-of-the-art electronic lock system that programmes contactless smartcards to allow access to specific class rooms or other areas for selected time periods only.  If security is breached through card loss or theft then it can be deleted instantly from the system without the need or cost of changing any locks.

Written by Helen Duval 2016

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