Since its conception till now, alarm systems, fax machines and medical alarms have been happily communicating to control rooms throughout Australia using standard copper analogue phone lines. Up till now, this method has been extremely reliable. Over the past few years, many homes and businesses have opted for connection of digital phone lines, VOIP and now installation of the NBN. Due to these services, standard alarm diallers, fax machines and medical alarms are now starting to fail. To put it simply, your alarm dialler will not work on a digital phone line. Lets have a look at how DIGITAL PHONE LINES, VOIP, THE NBN AND YOUR ALARM SYSTEM tie together.

There was a time not too long ago when the primary function of the telephone line was “VOICE” and secondary function was to transmit “DATA” but the world has changed and the prime function for telephone lines now is transmitting and receiving data. Hence the NBN (National Broadband Network) roll out. Very soon, millions of alarm dialler’s, fax machines and medical alarms will cease to communicate over existing copper phone lines, but don’t panic, there are solutions.

If NBN isn’t already available in your street it soon will be and what follows is the installation of a little box on the outside of your home. A few weeks prior , you’ll get a knock on your door from one of the many licenced RSP’s (Retail Service Providers) to tempt you to sign up with them for all your phone and communication needs (but don’t worry, you’ll have many months before your old copper phone line gets disconnected so don’t feel pressured by them). Before choosing your RSP, please ensure that you inform them that you have an alarm system, fax machine or medical alarm, it is vital you chose an RSP that can provide you with a box called a “UNI-V” and not a box called a “UNI-D”. A UNI-D box will not work with alarm diallers, medical alarms or fax machines but a UNI-V will. Be careful here because not all RSP’s can offer you the UNI-V box so please choose wisely before you sign up for their services.

SM Security Services Pty Ltd has spent hundreds of hours researching and testing solutions for reliable “back to base” options for our existing and new clients. Currently, even though 95% of all existing clients are still communicating effectively using standard copper analogue phone lines, many over the next few months will begin to fail as more and more homes and businesses opt to convert over to digital services.
SM Security Services Pty Ltd has a duty of care to ensure that all our security systems meet or excel Australian/New Zealand standards AS/NZS 2201. One of the criteria’s needing to be met here is back up battery requirements for your alarm system. AS/NZS 2201.1.2007 3.14.2 stipulates that during a power outage, the minimum time your back up battery should last before alarm system fails is 16 hours. Once the roll out of the NBN is completed and you are connected to the NBN using your newly installed UNI-V device, during a power outage, the Governing body for the NBN has stated that under normal operating conditions, if there is a power outage, the backup battery connected to the UNI-V port will allow telecommunications to keep working for approximately 3 hours. 3 hours is well short of the minimum standard of 16 hours so please be aware that your alarm system no longer meets Australian standards.


After testing many of the alarm signalling systems available within our security industry, we have chosen two solutions.
1. For home security and small businesses, we have chosen the Permaconn 3G GPRS unit. This will communicate alarm signals via Telstra GPRS as primary communication path and if required, the unit can also be set up to have a secondary communication path using your internet/data network.
2. For Government, large commercial and VIP clients, we have chosen the EMIZON TCD Communicator which communicates to the control room via broadband/IP as primary communication path and Telstra GPRS as secondary communication path. The Emizon TCD can be set up to offer a true “CLASS 5” level of monitoring (highest grade of monitoring available) giving you constant 20 second polling with the control room.


• Future proof device. Not affected by VOIP, digital phone lines or the NBN.
• No more phone bills. All associated phone calls to control room are inclusive in your monitoring fee.
• Increased level of security. Above systems will continue to transmit alarm signals even if your phone/data network goes down or phone lines are cut.
• Recognised by all major insurance companies.
• Meets Intruder Alarm System Australian Standards AS/NZS 2201.

You can get in touch with SM Security to find out more information here

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