Do Fake Security Cameras Work? 

fake security camera

 

 Some people have funny ideas about home security.

Certain homeowners, for example, boast about preventing burglaries with nothing more than a large Beware of the Doberman sign. Others park a pair of muddy size 14 boots outside the front door as a crime deterrent. Some will tell you to entrust your security to a fake security camera—an empty camera body designed to mimic a video monitoring solution.

When a burglar spots your dummy camera—complete with blinking, battery-powered red light if you spring for the high-end €20 model—they’ll quickly beat a retreat… or so the story goes.

Does it work?

It’s a home security urban legend with a grain of truth. A novice burglar might just be fooled, although experienced intruders can quickly spot a fake.
What you need to remember is when the cheap trick fails, what’s left to protect your home? After all, there’s a whole lot that a fake camera can’t do. 

 

1: Fake cameras can’t show you important activity 

Take this everyday scenario: While you’re at work, someone walks up to your front door. Here’s how it might go with a real camera, and with a fake one.

Real camera: With a Smartzone security camera, you’ll be notified. The visitor’s motion triggers your camera to record a clip, and we send you a smartphone alert. On opening the alert, you can pull up a live feed from your camera on your app and see what’s happening.

Now, you can take action. You can call your partner if they’re home and let them know. You can zoom in on the video feed for a better look at the visitor’s face. If your camera is a doorbell camera, you can address them directly through the camera’s speaker and ask them: ‘Hi, we can’t come to the door right now’ or ‘please leave immediately, you are being watched’ or ‘Hi Mum, give me a second and I’ll unlock the door for you and let you in’.

Fake camera: With a fake camera, none of the above applies.

2: Fake cameras can’t help you catch a burglar

Let’s say that your suspicious visitor really is up to no good. In fact, they’re a package thief, and they make off with a parcel you just had delivered to your front door.

Real camera: We’re sorry about your missing package. Your camera supplies a silver lining for you and your neighbours: a clear video clip of the thief in action.

It’s easy to download to your phone and email it to your local Garda station. You can even post it directly to Facebook to share with your neighbourhood groups if you so wish.

Your video clip can quickly become a crime-fighting asset that gives the Gardaí the breakthrough they may need to recognize and catch the thief.

PS: your Alarm.com service provider has a great solution to package theft or any other potential criminal activity on your doorstep.

Fake camera: You’ll still realize your package went missing—after a couple of days, at least and the criminal will have probably done a number of houses in your area at that point.

3: Fake cameras aren’t connected to a security system

Let’s look at the worst-case scenario. Your suspicious visitor is a daytime burglar intent on forcing your front door open, camera or no.

Real camera: This burglar quickly discovers that your camera is connected to your smart security system. As well as recording them, your Alarm.com technology is simultaneously sounding a loud alarm, sending alarm notifications to you and your family, and delivering an emergency signal to a security professional at a 24-hour monitoring station

Fake camera: You’re going to have a terrible surprise when you get home.  

4: Fake cameras can’t show you anything at all 

Not everything that happens on your porch is an attempted burglary. On any given day, you’re far more likely to have a package delivered, to have neighbours visit, or to have your kids arrive home from school. Being able to see what’s going on makes everything easier and reduces everyday worries

This is how are Smartzone camera’s are used every day and it’s what many users love most about their smart security systems. With a fake camera, you don’t get any of this.

Ready to keep it real? 
We install your complete system including all security cameras that makes your home safer, smarter and more convenient.


The price for keeping your home and family safe is not as much as you think.

Contact us today and tell us about your specific requirements, set up a home assessment and give you a quote.

Call 0818 222 926 or 021 4966248

Seven Questions for Choosing the Best Home Security System

Smart home video tech

Picking the right home security system can be confusing.


Consider all the questions. Which brand is better? Should I use a professional installer? Are all home security apps the same? What’s the best security company? There’s a lot to discover. 

To save you time, and to help you get the most protection, ease of use and everyday value, we’ve narrowed things down to seven essential things to know. Ask these questions as you assess your options to make the Smart choice.

1: Is it professionally monitored? 
All Smartzone security systems are professionally monitored, because there is no effective substitute for this service. You can’t possibly see every smartphone alert that a security system sends you, and if you’re home in an emergency, your priority is to get everyone to safety.

2: Will it withstand a burglar’s toolkit? 

Smart home security

Not all security products are engineered equally. To ensure you don’t entrust your safety to a security system that can be disabled with a hand tool, make sure it has the following:
Crash and Smash protection. A common burglary tactic is to smash a home’s security panel to prevent it sending an emergency signal to the monitoring station. Smartzones technology can recognize a crash and smash attack, and signal your monitoring station regardless

Dedicated cellular connection. This type of signalling technology doesn’t piggyback on your home’s broadband or phone line, and so can’t be physically cut by an intruder. All Smartzone security panels have a dedicated cellular connection with battery backup for power outages. 

3: How many sensors do I need?

Contact sensors are home security essentials; small devices that detect the opening and closing of doors, windows, drawers and more. Some security systems come with as little as two contact sensors, which can be a problem. Burglars don’t just use the front and back door. Smartzone will work with you to determine how many contact sensors your home requires, our support service and technology advice.



4: What else will this system protect me and my family from? 

video Smartzone smart home


New technology means that the best security systems can protect your home from far more than a burglar.

Smartzone’s proactive safeguards can detect and respond to dangers like fire, carbon monoxide. We can also save you time and money, tackling problems like energy wastelost keys and package deliveries. We can even alert you when there’s unexpected activity around your house, such as your kids getting into forbidden areas!

With the ability to respond to more dangers and challenges, even when disarmed, an Smartzone system gives you more value and flexibility, leaving you in complete control.

5: What happens if something stops working?   

The most important thing about a security system is that it has to work when you need it. When you go it alone on a security or smart home setup, what happens when a device or component of the system needs professional attention? 

With Smartzone however, help is always at hand. With advanced training, and online diagnostic tools, they can quickly troubleshoot your system. Many issues can be fixed remotely; other fixes can be carried out by a visiting technician. 

 

In addition to great customer support when things go wrong, Smartzone users get digital updates that make their technology even smarter. We regularly roll out new features—like our Smart Signal emergency buttons, or our motion sensitive and 2 way audio video Doorbell, keeping your technology cutting-edge while other security systems grow obsolete.

6: Does it include smart home devices? 

Smart home technology is the home improvement trend that’s here to stay. The right security system will set you up with everything you need for a smart home. In fact, it’s the easiest way to own one. We also have advanced heating and water controlled smart products that you can control from the same app.

 

7: Is this security system powered by Alarm.com?   

smartzone smarthome security

Yes. Smartzone is powered by Alarm.com, leaders in cutting edge Security technology. Maybe you don’t need seven questions to pick the best security system? A Smartzone security system powered by Alarm.com gives you all the protection and benefits you will need.

Talk to us today.

Four Ways to Use a Smartzone Image Sensor

 

Tom and Jerry. Chips and curry. You and your significant other. Great partnerships make the world a better place.

Take the Smartzone powered by Alarm.com Image Sensor. A partnership between a motion sensor and a connected camera, it keeps you safe, protects your property, and shows you what’s happening at home for instant peace of mind.

Unlike security cameras, Image Sensors capture photos, not video. They also don’t need wires or Wi-Fi, making them easy to install virtually anywhere in your home. Recently enhanced with better night vision and image resolution, these versatile smart home security devices have more uses than ever.

1: See and capture important activity


Did the postman just open your gate, or was it an intruder? Is that your wife in the garage, or did your two-year old finally reach the door handle? With an Image Sensor on guard, Alarm.com can send an instant snapshot to your phone when activity occurs, enabling you to act quickly if necessary, or relax.

In a fire or break-in, your Image Sensors take a stream of pictures automatically and upload them securely to Alarm.com’s cloud via cellular connection. As one Alarm.com user found out after a fire, visual evidence makes a huge difference.

2: Check in on home anytime


From 
checking in after school to confirming that holiday home is ok after a storm, Image Sensors offer on-demand peace of mind when you can’t be there in person.

Checking in is easy: just open your Smartzone App or dashboard, choose an Image Sensor, and request a snapshot. If you need to see a specific activity, like your kids arriving home, you can also create Image Sensor alerts activated by other devices—in this case, your smart lock or security panel.

3: Activate other smart devices


Because they’re 
powered by Alarm.com, Image Sensors can activate other smart devices on your behalf, enabling your house to respond automatically when an Image Sensor detects motion.

Want to make your porch less attractive to prowlers at night? An Alarm.com-powered smart light, triggered by an Image Sensor’s night-time motion sensors, will do the trick.

4: Stay in the know when there’s no Wi-Fi


With cellular technology on board, Alarm.com Image Sensors don’t need Wi-Fi or broadband. This makes them ideal for keeping tabs on out-of-the way areas at home, or on a holiday home without broadband service.

Even if there’s a power outage, your Image Sensors will keep on working—just like your Alarm.com-powered security panel.

Want to protect your home with Image Sensors? 

Image Sensors are sold exclusively by Smartzone as part of a smart home security system, and can be quickly installed alongside other smart devices like locks, security cameras, video doorbells and more.

Four Ways to Use a Smartzone powered by Alarm.com Smart Thermostat

You’ll Relax Better This Summer with Professional Monitoring

The warm weather has arrived. Summer plans are starting to come together. Between your kids’ activities, days out with all the family and summer holiday plans, you’re going to be away from home more.

For peace of mind, maybe you’re considering installing a smart device so you’ll know about suspicious activity at home when you’re not there. Connected cameras can send you smartphone alerts, for example. There are even security solutions with activity sensors that alert you if a door or window opens.

Peace of mind, one alert at a time. Right?

Or is there something missing here? Consider these questions:

1: Will you catch every alert?  

What if there’s a break-in at home, and you get an alert—but you miss it? What if you’re swimming, or at the movies with your family, with your phone on “do not disturb”? Maybe you’re on an airplane, or just taking a nap?

2: Will you respond to every alert?


Investigating every alert for suspicious activity isn’t easy. You can get overwhelmed, especially with standalone services that don’t understand enough contexts to recognize harmless activity like a cleaner entering your home.

If you’re holidaying, meanwhile, would you know what to do if you spotted suspicious activity at home? If you’re overseas, for example, dialling 999 won’t connect you to your local law enforcement or fire department.

3: Is there a better way to protect your home? 

Don’t get us wrong: smartphone alerts from home are great. They can let you know that everything is going okay at home, or that you need to call and check in with your teen.

For a real emergency, however, you need professional security monitoring.

Every Smartzone smart security system includes this service.  No matter where you are, or what time of day or night it is, you’ll have a trained security professional ready and waiting to respond to an alarm signal from your home by alerting your local law enforcement or fire department on your behalf.

Alarm.com technology comes with other proactive safeguards too. You’ll get crash and smash protection, our dedicated cellular connection and our Insights Engine.

What about smart devices? You can incorporate a full range of those too, like a video doorbell to deter and identify suspicious visitors, a smart lock to protect your deliveries, and smart smoke detectors for better safety.

For peace of mind this summer and all year round, there’s no better solution.

Do I Need a Security System If I Have a Dog?

Just about everyone is happy to see a dog—except for burglars, that is.

When a burglar has a choice between a home with a dog and a home without a dog, the dog-free house will typically end up as the target.

Does that mean that you should forgo a security system because you own a dog? Not exactly. Let’s compare the two and see.

1: How reliably do they alert you to trouble?

 

Dogs have amazing senses, with their sharp ears and superior scents-ability. Much like a security system, a dog can alert you right away to an intruder on your property. The downside of this is, to your dog, many everyday visitors count as intruders.

“Squirrel!”  “Postman!” “Neighbour!” They’re all excuses for your dog to start barking.

smart home security system does it better. Like a dog, it’s proactive when an intruder is detected—but it’s far better at discerning a genuine intruder from a harmless everyday event, thanks to its use of intelligence from all around the home.

Equally important, if there’s a break-in, a Smartzone-powered security system can alert a 24-7 monitoring station for professional help.

The verdict: Until dogs get their own dedicated cellular connections, smart home security wins this round.

 

2: How well do they keep burglars out?

Burglars avoid homes with security systems. 60 percent will go elsewhere if they see one. Add a smart security camera and you have a formidable deterrent.

Of course, most burglars don’t want to meet your dog, either. Should they spot dog toys in the garden or hear muffled barking, many will move along.

Deterrence aside, though, there are some things a dog can’t help with. For example, one-third of all burglaries are cases of unlawful entry—a burglar entering through an unlocked door or window. With proactive reminders and remote locking, an Alarm.com-powered security system can save the day when you’re in a rush and forget to secure the house.

Winner: Dogs and security systems are both great deterrents, but a dog can’t send you a smartphone alert if you forget to lock up. Smart home security wins this round.

 

3: How tamper-resistant are they? 

How does canine security hold up if an experienced burglar targets your home? It’s not unknown for a burglar to arrive with food to distract a dog, for example. While a specially trained dog may hold his ground, most dogs will scamper away after their prize.

Meanwhile, a lawbreaker will need more than a steak to defeat a smart home security system. Even if they take a hammer to your security panel, Alarm.com’s Crash and Smash technology can still alert your home’s 24-7 monitoring station.

Winner: Engineered to meet rigorous life safety standards and immune to temptation, the smart security system wins this one hands-down.

 

4: Which one is more fun?

You can have fun with a smart home security system. Checking in on your kids from work is fun; so is showing off your smart lights and your video doorbell to your neighbours.

Let’s be real though: it’ll never take the place of that furry, wiggling, licking goofball that always loves you, no matter what.

Winner: Sorry, security system: this one goes to the dog.

Why Smart Home Security is the Best Holiday House-Minder

When you go on holiday, it’s extra-relaxing to have a friend or family member keeping an eye on things at home.

This year, though, you could give your regular houseminder a break—and give yourself a new level of peace of mind.

When it comes to protecting, securing, and keeping an eye on your home, new technology can rival even the most diligent housesitter. A smart security system powered by Smartzone watches your home around the clock, and can take proactive measures to safeguard your property while making it easy to check in anytime.

Here’s why Smartzone could be the greatest houseminder of all.

1: It never takes its eyes off your house. 

Houseminders are great at keeping an eye on things, but they also have to earn paychecks, run errands, sleep and socialize.

A smart security system, meanwhile, can provide round-the-clock awareness. Connected sensors and devices can generate instant smartphone alerts about important activity at your home, letting you know if something is wrong or suspicious.

With 24-7 professional monitoring, a fire or break-in can be reported to a monitoring station, where a security professional can dispatch first responders to your home. It doesn’t matter whether you see an alert or not in order for you to be protected in an emergency.

2: It knows where the water main is

If a pipe leaks or bursts, how quickly could you get to the water main and shut it off? Wait… do you even know where your water main is? If you don’t, then your houseminder certainly doesn’t.

Protection from water damage is another area where technology now outpaces even the most diligent human. With a combination of water sensors and a smart shutoff valve fitted to your home’s water main, your Smartzone-powered system is capable of detecting a leak and automatically shutting the water off to prevent damage from accumulating.

With the clean-up costs of a water leak potentially running into tens of thousands of Euro’s, this is one proactive safeguard you definitely want when you travel.

3: It’s always home to accept deliveries

You’re expecting post while you’re gone, but you can’t expect your houseminder to put their schedule on hold in order to sit at your house, waiting for the doorbell to ring.

A doorbell camera, integrated into your security system, can make things easy. When the Postman rings the bell, your Smartzone app can alert you. Wherever you happen to be, you should be able to see them, talk to them, unlock your smart lock, and ask them to leave the package inside.

4: You can check in anytime—no calls necessary.

With time differences and busy schedules, checking in with your houseminder can be inconvenient. You might prefer not to bother them.

With Smartzone, though, you can check in whenever you feel that itch. Just open your app, select a video camera feed, and take a peek. You can also quickly scan the status of your locks, smart thermostat, system arming status, lights and garage door.

If you prefer to keep check-ins to a minimum, it’s easy to set up alerts customized to your preferences. Give your house-minder a personalized keyless access code, and you can have an alert appear whenever they show up and leave, or only if they don’t show at all. You can even create video alerts associated with your smart lock to visually verify who’s visiting.

Smartzone, Powered by Alarm.com.

Why Smartzone Is a Move-In Essential

Moving into a new home this year and feeling overwhelmed? Got a ton of projects and purchases to organize?

Here’s a valuable tip: prioritize any project that makes the others easier.

Take home security, for example. The latest smart home security systems don’t just give you peace of mind; they can also take care of several common problems from day one, making an instant impact on your new home’s to-do list.

1: Securing your new place

In an unfamiliar home and neighborhood, your ‘security senses’ will be heightened, especially at night. Getting connected with Smartzone is the fastest way to put your mind at ease and secure your new home properly.

We’ll work with you to customize a smart security system for your home, which can include wireless contact sensors for doors and windows, image sensors, smoke detectors and lots of other smart devices, all connected into a smartphone app that keeps you connected to home with security alerts and more.

Smartzone-powered systems are professionally monitored for emergencies, and come with proactive intelligence that starts protecting your home and family immediately.

2: Giving access to essential visitors 

From friends and family to contractors and deliverymen, you’re going to have a lot of visitors at your new home. Smart access control makes things more convenient, enabling you to let trusted visitors in remotely, with no spare keys necessary.

If you’re concerned about unlocking your door when you’re not there, consider a video doorbell for your system. When a visitor rings the bell, you can verify who they are via live video on your smartphone. When you’re happy, you can unlock your smart lock from the same video screen.

3: Tackling energy efficiency and waste

Making your new home more energy-efficient is likely to be a long-term project. It might take years to replace older appliances or windows, for example.

A smart thermostat, however, can start saving energy right away, simply by setting your cooling or heating back when you’re not home.

Because it’s connected to your security system, the Smartzone smart thermostat knows exactly when you’re home or not—ensuring that you get savings when you’re away, and comfort when you’re there. It also has some very smart extra ways to save you energy.

Want a smart security system for your new home? 

Contact us today on 0818 222 926.

Smartzone, Powered by Alarm.com.

Smart Home Security Versus… Spare Keys

How many spare front door keys do you own right now? One? Two, if you count the rusty one under the planter? No idea, because your kids keep losing them?

Spare keys aren’t just irritating to keep track of, though. They’re a security risk. Every key you give out decreases your control over who enters your home. With unlawful entry now accounting for one third of all burglaries, you should consider a smarter alternative.

What causes the problem? 

Once a spare key is out of your hands, you can’t stop it getting into the wrong hands. Even a trustworthy keyholder, like your teen, can lose it. A dishonest keyholder, meanwhile, could make a copy, return the original, and leave you none the wiser. And that ‘emergency’ key you cleverly hid by the front door? It’s easier to find than you think.

It’s no wonder that smart homeowners are eliminating this weak link in their home’s security for good.

How does smart home security safeguard you?

Our smart home security technology can replace your keys with advanced hardware and proactive cloud technology. With a smart lock integrated into your smart security system, you’ll enjoy better access control without sacrificing any convenience.

Safeguard 1: No more keys!

A Smartzone-powered smart lock gives you many ways to unlock your door, none requiring a key. You can open the lock with your smartphone app, or as part of an automated Scene, activated from your driveway. You can also use the lock’s keypad, which requires a four-digit user code.

These codes are easy to create and customize, and you can set up different codes for different people: your spouse; your kids; trusted visitors. Unlike a spare key, you can delete a user code: you can set a code to expire after a given date (useful for contractors) or you can delete it manually anytime.

Safeguard 2: Alerts give you awareness

User codes also help you keep track of who’s opening your front door. When someone uses their code, Smartzone logs the event and can also generate a real-time alert that appears on your phone.

You can set up an alert for every time the door is unlocked, or for specific users only, avoiding ‘alert overload’. As well as enhancing your security, it’s a great way to keep tabs on important things like your kids arriving home safely after school.

Safeguard 3: Front door video verification 

If you want to really see who’s coming and going, your service provider can install a video doorbell alongside your smart lock. With motion-triggered recording, Smartzone’s doorbell camera can generate a video alert when the door is opened, or when a specific user enters their code.

It also has live video and two-way voice chat, letting you see and talk to whoever’s at your door. If you prefer not to give a user code to a visitor, you can have them ring the doorbell instead, and let them in using the “unlock” icon on your app’s video chat screen.

Want to know more? 

Contact us on 0818 222 926.

Smartzone, Powered by Alarm.com.