Security Systems FAQs


Security Systems

What type of room should have a card reader?

Any room, lab or building can have a card reader. A card reader can go any place where an area needs to be secured. Card readers replace access via keys, which can be easily duplicated or lost and cause a security risk. Card readers use various technologies and allow the administrators to award and revoke access from users at any time, and also to determine area access at particular times. Campus Security also monitors card readers for alarms and signs of intrusion.

What is the cost?

The cost is determined by Campus Security after consulting with Facilities Services, IT Services, and any off-site contractors/vendors.  You will be provided with an estimate as part of Security's recommendation.

Will I be able to work in the area while it’s being installed?

Yes, in most cases.  However, certain devices or installations may create interruptions due to alarm siren testing, drilling, etc.  In this event, Campus Security will make every effort to notify the requestor in advance of any interruption.  

Does a card reader eliminate the need for other security devices inside the protected area?

This will be determined at the time of your security survey.

What should I do if a security device is malfunctioning?

If the issue is urgent, contact Campus Security at 778.782.3100.  If the matter is not urgent, submit a service request form here.

What kinds of areas should have alarm panels?

Alarm panels are used to protect the insides of buildings, offices, labs and other areas where there are valuable assets; in short, anywhere that an area needs to be monitored and secured. They are most effective in places where, at times, there are no personnel on location.

Why might I receive one device in tandem with my alarm panel and not another?

The security survey determines which devices will ensure your area remains secure based on the available project budget. In general, door contacts will set off an alarm if a door is forced, and a glass break detector will set off an alarm if a window is broken. Motion detectors pick up unauthorized movements and work even if someone enters through an open window or some method other than forcing the door. However, certain areas of an office may be out of range of the motion detector or not suitable to motion detectors, and need another security device. Again, on-site evaluation is the best method to gauge your security needs.

How quickly will someone respond to an alarm?

Intrusion alarms are a high priority for Campus Security and a patroller will arrive as soon as possible.

Do I really need a siren?

Sirens are strongly recommended unless you are in an area where noise needs to be kept to a minimum. While the siren can be an occasional nuisance if you simply forget to disarm the panel or close a door, it serves as an effective deterrent to theft and lets others nearby know something is going on.

What are door contacts, exactly, and why do I need them?

Door contacts are devices that attach to a door to allow for monitoring of break and entry. The contacts monitor the open/closed state of the door.  If the door is armed and it opens, an alarm will register in the security office and/or on a local loudspeaker.

Why should I get a PC Santis Alarm?

Any room with a large number of PCs should have PC Santis Alarms to guard against theft. Even small offices with a single PC can have a PC Santis Alarm depending on the value of the assets, both physical and data-based. If there is a lot of valuable data on a computer that you want protected, a PC Santis Alarm may be a worthwhile investment.

To what can I attach a PC Santis Alarm?

They can be attached to virtually any device that will remain stationary after installation such as ceiling mount projectors, desktop computer towers/monitors, printers, etc. Please indicate what device(s) you want the PCSantis Alarm(s) attached to when you fill out the device request form.

What is the purpose of a video camera? Where should I put one?

The purpose of a camera is an added deterrent to protect your assets and workspace from theft and to potentially provide information about intruders. A camera can be installed in any location where there are vulnerable assets, access controlling points, or a concern for personal safety.

Do the cameras work at night or in dark conditions?

There are cameras that work at night and in other low-light conditions. Campus Security will recommend the best type of camera for your situation during the on-site survey.