Should You Install a Security System in Your Office?

For entrepreneurs and for those who work at home, the idea of installing a security alarm system crosses many people’s minds. Think about all that is housed in a home office. From the computer and its contents to paper documents and expensive equipment, it’s a robber’s dream.

This article is not meant to instill fear or generate feelings of paranoia. It’s meant to delve into whether installing a security system in your office is cost-effective, beneficial, and doable.

There are two different types of security systems: cyber security and premises security.

For small businesses, security cameras are useful if you have a storefront that allows public access. Many cameras are easy to install and operate.

Cyber security

We won’t spend a lot of time on Internet security because we are all aware that passwords need to be difficult to hack and that we need to be on top of our accounts. By purchasing goods and services online, secure websites with credit card information need to be patrolled. These days, it’s easier than ever to steal bank account information, identities, client information, and much more. Don’t allow your business to be compromised easily.

Monitor accounts for accurate withdrawals and deposits. Don’t re-use passwords or include obvious information such as the business name, children’s names, date of opening the business, etc.

Premises security

Many entrepreneurs use an in-home office, and it’s important to protect physical assets. As part of a house, this room in particular is the income lifeline. Before delving into cameras and sensors, be sure to back up files to a secure, off-site location.

One reputable company is Carbonite. This company automatically backs up files, folders, or whatever type of information you want to a website. With the automatic process, there is no need to physically do anything. A selling point is that if your computer is turned off for more than a week and a backup has not occurred, you’ll receive an email stating the backup is more than one week overdue. The convenience is unmatched, and the monthly fee is affordable. There are also levels you can choose from depending on how many devices need to be backed up. (Hint: This helps if your hard drive ever dies or you need to restore any settings.)

Despite the advancements in digital archiving, many people still have paper files that need to be protected, as well as the electronic devices themselves.

The primary goal is to determine a budget for what you want versus what you need. Security measures include alarms that emit a siren or link to law enforcement, security cameras, automatic lights, keypad entry, etc.

Security codes offer an extra layer of protection for entrepreneurs who work at home.

FrontPoint is considered to be the most affordable, do-it-yourself security system that can be wired near the A/C panel. Used primarily for homes, this can also be used in office spaces and retail locations. Many small business owners use this system because it only supports 39 sensors and nine unique user passwords. Not many businesses need more than that, so it decreases the need to go to a larger company for security needs. The system can be monitored, set, and disarmed from any computer or smartphone with Internet access. Cost hovers around $300. While there is no long-term contract, the equipment cost is lowered considerably with a 36-month agreement.

ADT Pulse is a trusted name in both home and office security systems. While professional installation is the only option, this system combines office-monitored security with video surveillance and lighting. There is no keyless entry, and the system can be monitored from any computer or smartphone (not Blackberry, however). Cost varies depending on the customization, but it generally ranges from $500 to $1,600.


Laura Burkey is a freelance writer who blogs on various topics including online security, entrepreneurship, and SEO practices.

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