Future-Proofing Investments: Maintenance and Upgrades for Central Monitoring Equipment

a surveillance camera example

Customers depend on you when an alarm goes off–and it’s up to you to provide a fast, efficient, and professional response every single time. When you’re running an alarm monitoring center or central station, you know firsthand how important it is to be there when people need you. 

And in this high-stakes environment, you can’t risk a chance that your equipment will let you down when you need it the most. If you depend on a complex array of physical monitoring equipment and infrastructure, regular maintenance and upgrades are crucial. Taking care of your equipment ultimately helps you take care of assets, property, and lives.

However, managing physical products and upgrades in a central station or alarm monitoring center can be challenging. That is one major reason businesses are turning to cloud technology to help address common physical equipment pitfalls and to future-proof their investments. 

a person designing a workflow

The challenges of upgrading and managing physical security infrastructure

As a security professional, you are responsible for regularly updating existing systems so that they perform flawlessly, day in and out. This includes your alarm receivers, communication systems, database management systems, video surveillance systems, and other tools like your central monitoring software. 

However, managing and upgrading physical security infrastructure can leave you wrestling with issues related to scalability, compatibility, and downtime. 

As an example, you need to ensure that your database management system scales with you as the number of monitored clients, alarm systems, and their related data grows. The risk is that as your business (and your database needs) expand, you might experience poorer database performance, leading to slower response times and possible system outages. If not actively addressed, even something simple like retrieving data could become a serious problem that impacts your response times. 

And what about compatibility issues? Whenever you decide to upgrade or replace certain components–like alarm receivers or cameras–you need to ensure new components are compatible with your existing infrastructure. Different connectivity requirements or power specifications need to be considered and reconciled.

Finally, there’s the ever-present challenge of system downtime. As you upgrade and maintain your systems, the associated downtime could put your security monitoring and response at risk. To navigate this, you would need to do essential upgrades and maintenance during non-peak times or in carefully-planned phases, potentially using backup servers to ensure continuous operations when any part of your system is undergoing maintenance or experiencing a failure. 

Beyond these broader challenges, you also have to pay attention to the minute details associated with updating, maintaining and upgrading a variety of different systems. These include: 

  • Alarm receivers: These require regular updates and firmware patches to comply with the latest security protocols. Eventually, you may even need to upgrade to newer models with updated features and higher-level security. 
  • Communication systems: Are your communication channels fast and reliable? From your internet connection to landlines and cellular networks, these are crucial for receiving and responding to alarm signals. 
  • Monitoring software: You’ll need to update any software you use with the latest patches and regular security updates. And if you’re using multiple systems, that’s multiple upgrades and patches each year.
  • Databases: You’ll need to regularly backup your database to protect against data loss in case of system failure. You may even need to upgrade to a more robust system as your needs evolve.
  • Video surveillance systems: You need to ensure surveillance equipment is clean and well-maintained, and be prepared to  switch to higher-resolution cameras or systems with advanced video verification capabilities when these become dated.
  • Backup systems: You’ll need to regularly test these systems to ensure they can take over in the case of primary system failure. Upgrade them as needed to accommodate any increases in data storage and processing needs. 
  • Cybersecurity measures: Regularly update and patch your security software to stay on top of evolving threats. It’s important to protect your monitoring center against cyberattacks or viruses that could cripple your operations. 

Regularly auditing and maintaining this equipment should keep your operation in good shape, but it will also keep you busy! If you would like to simplify your operations–and your maintenance needs–you may opt for a cloud-based solution for alarm monitoring operations.

a cloud system infographic

Could cloud-based solutions be right for you?

Imagine trading most of your maintenance-heavy IT infrastructure for a simple setup that relies on only three things: internet access, workstations, and desktop phones. That’s the benefit of using cloud-based alarm monitoring software.

Cloud-based solutions can radically simplify your operations. They decrease the amount of time you spend managing and updating on-site equipment because there is simply less on-site equipment to manage. In turn, you reduce the need for dedicated IT support, eliminate maintenance and upgrading headaches, and enjoy smaller energy bills.

But what about security? Rest assured: keeping your data in the cloud is safe and secure when you have a partner like Bold Group on your side. Our cloud-based alarm monitoring software, Manitou, safely stores all of your data on UL-listed, SSAE 16 Type II compliant offsite servers in Colorado Springs and Los Angeles. These fully-staffed, 24/7, HIPAA-compliant facilities can give you peace of mind knowing that your data is always safe with us. Additionally, automatic updates, backups, and other redundancies and safeguards offer an extra layer of protection.

If you’re ready to simplify your operations and eliminate much of the minutiae of regular equipment maintenance, we recommend trying Manitou cloud-based alarm monitoring. Manitou can eliminate many of your maintenance headaches and give you greater flexibility, scalability, and cost-efficiency. 

As your business grows, Manitou’s expandable, flexible platform and add-on product integrations can empower you to offer new services and build your recurring monthly revenue. Best of all, you won’t have to constantly invest in (and update, maintain, and secure) your onsite physical security infrastructure. 

Transitioning to cloud-based solutions is a smart move that will help future-proof your central station or alarm monitoring center. Get your time back and gain greater efficiency, flexibility, and long-term viability with Manitou: contact Bold Group today to see what’s possible!