TMA Standards Committee to Host Town Halls on TMA-AVS-01

TMA’s proposed ANSI standard, TMA-AVS-01 – Alarm Verification Standard, is in the final week of a Preliminary Technical Review period. The next step in the ANSI standards development process is the 60-day public comment period. We currently anticipate this will begin July 5th.

In line with this formal comment period, TMA’s Standards Committee has scheduled five, stand-alone Virtual Town Hall question and answer forums for TMA members and other stakeholders. Security, monitoring, and public safety practitioners are encouraged to attend one or more of these sessions to share comments, ask questions, and exchange dialogue with the Standards Committee and their peers.

TMA-AVS-01 – Alarm Validation Standard

Register to attend one or more of the following TMA Virtual Town Hall Meetings (Each begins at 1:00PM/ET):

Homeland Security Department Warns of More Mass Casualty Violence

Homeland Security warns of individuals using high-profile events to justify violence against ideological opponents, public gatherings, schools and more

The Department of Homeland Security issued a bulletin Tuesday warning of a “heightened threat environment” over the next several months as they monitor both risks of domestic terrorism and foreign adversaries looking to sow discord within the U.S. to promote acts of violence.

The United States remains in a heightened threat environment, as noted in the previous Bulletin, and several recent attacks have highlighted the dynamic and complex nature of the threat environment,” DHS said in a new bulletin from the National Terrorism Advisory System.

“In the coming months, we expect the threat environment to become more dynamic as several high-profile events could be exploited to justify acts of violence against a range of possible targets,” DHS said.

The bulletin listed potential targets to include “public gatherings, faith-based institutions, schools, racial and religious minorities, government facilities and personnel, U.S. critical infrastructure, the media, and perceived ideological opponents.”

The department stressed that “foreign adversaries-including terrorist organizations and nation state adversaries-also remain intent on exploiting the threat environment to promote or inspire violence, sow discord, or undermine U.S. democratic institutions.”

“We continue to assess that the primary threat of mass casualty violence in the United States stems from lone offenders and small groups motivated by a range of ideological beliefs and/or personal grievances,” the bulletin said.

DHS pointed to several recent high-profile events including the mass shooting in Buffalo, New York, where the suspect in the grocery store attack allegedly claimed that he was motivated by racist, anti-Black, and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. The department said it is monitoring online forums following the mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that have been encouraging copycat attacks.

TMA to Introduce New Standard in 5/2 Webinar

Register now to attend TMA Signature Webinar Series: Impact on the Security Industry and Public Safety of AVS-01.

Join committee leaders to hear about the latest updates on the TMA-AVS-01 Alarm Validation Standard, scheduled for comment later this year. TMA-AVS-01 provides a standardized method of creating an alarm scoring or classification metric for unauthorized human activity detected by alarm systems that will assist law enforcement with resource allocation and Call for Service prioritization.

Borrowing from a successful UL practice, TMA will conduct a preliminary comment period for the TMA-AVS-01 standard. This 30-day preliminary comment period is an optional process, not required by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). The preliminary comment period will provide an opportunity for TMA members and other interested stakeholders to provide feedback on the draft document, prior to the formal ANSI Public Comment period. Hear about what you’ll need to know to participate in the preliminary comment period. Time will be set aside for Q&A.

Please register for TMA Signature Webinar Series: Impact on the Security Industry and Public Safety of AVS-01 on May 2, 2022 1:00 PM EDT at:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7869550389177568779

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Important: Potential Solution for Replacement of Certain 3G Devices

From AICC

Status of AT&T 3G Sunset

Yesterday, February 22nd, was the day that AT&T was scheduled to start its 3G shutdown. AICC has been working to have AT&T delay the shutdown until later in 2022, but thus far no extension has been granted. As a practical matter, it will likely take several weeks for AT&T to shut down 3G nationwide, so in certain parts of the country alarm service providers may have a brief period of time to continue replacing 3G units before AT&T service goes down.

Temporary Roaming Solution

A partial solution has been brokered by the FCC just last week to help remaining 3G users: Certain 3G units can roam on T-Mobile, which will not shut down its 3G network until July 1, 2022, giving the alarm industry and others an additional four months to replace those units that are compatible with the roaming arrangement. This is not a global solution, but will hopefully apply to about 25% of existing 3G alarm radios, including certain PERS units as well as fire/burglar/CO radios. However, by delaying the deadline for replacing a sizable percentage of the 3G units, this solution can allow the industry to focus first on those units that cannot roam. Certain alarm industry members have tested the roaming solution with good results so far.

It appears that the roaming solution will apply to your units if (1) they are on the Cisco Jasper platform, and (2) have a SIM card that is configured to allow roaming. Your aggregator/equipment vendor may be able to let you know if you have units that fall into that category; and AT&T should be able to do so as well. We encourage you to explore the use of this solution ASAP, and to implement it right away if it is available for any of your customers’ alarm radios.

To start the process, we recommend starting with your aggregator/equipment vendor. They can reach out to their AT&T reps to start the process. However, it appears that some AT&T reps have not yet been trained with regard to the roaming solution, so if you encounter push back or other problems, you or your vendor should contact:

Susanna Biancheri
AT&T Network & Engineering Operations
847 212 4191 (Mobile)
sb2321@att.com

Virginia 757/948 Area Code Overlay Relief Implementation Committee Announcement

Please see the attached information about the Virginia 757/948 area code overlay as it relates to actions that may need to be taken by providers of Alarm, Security, and Elevator equipment.

It is imperative that alarm, security, and elevator alarm companies reprogram alarm panels in their customers’ premises if they currently are programmed to dial out seven digits to reach the alarm monitoring bureau.  If they are dialing out seven digits now, they must be reprogrammed to dial out a ten-digit number which includes the 757 area code plus telephone number.

As co-chairs of the Industry’s Virginia 757/948 Area Code Overlay Relief Implementation Committee, we are pleased to share the attached information to advise your company of the start of mandatory 10-digit dialing on 4/9/2022.

This reminder notice is similar to the letters that were sent to you on May 15, 2021 and September 3, 2021.

If you have any questions, please contact us.

Laura Dalton and Nicole Febles

Co-Chairs for the VA 757/948 Area Code Overlay Industry Committee

Laura Dalton, Verizon                        Nicole Febles, T-Mobile
914-821-9686                                    973-960-0913

Laura.r.Dalton@verizon.com            nicole.febles@t-mobile.com

 

TMA Welcomes 91st and 92nd ECC to its ASAP-to-PSAP Service

TMA is pleased to welcome two new Emergency Communications Centers (ECC) to its ASAP-to-PSAP service. With the addition of these, the service is being used by 92 centers across the United States.

To view a full listing of active or testing ECCs, active Alarm companies or monitoring centers, or to learn more about TMA’s ASAP-to-PSAP services, please visit our website.

TMA ASAP-to-PSAP Service Contact: Bryan Ginn, bginn@tma.us

 Beaumont, TX

The Beaumont TX Police Department 9-1-1 Operations Center became the 91st ECC in the United States and the 11th ECC in the state of Texas to implement the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP). Beaumont went live on Tuesday, August 10th with Rapid Response Monitoring, Vector Security, Securitas, Security Central, Stanley Security, Guardian Protection, Affiliated Monitoring, AT&T Digital Life, Tyco (Johnson Controls), National Monitoring Center, Protection One, Brinks Home Security, Alert 360 and Vivint. ADT and United Central Control (UCC) will be brought online soon.

Chesterfield County, VA

The Chesterfield County VA Emergency Communications Center is the 92nd public safety communications center in the United States and the 18th agency in the state of Virginia to implement the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP). Chesterfield County went live on Monday, September 13th with Vector Security, Rapid Response Monitoring, Stanley Security, CPI, AT&T Digital Life, Guardian Protection, Protection One, Securitas, Tyco (Johnson Controls), Affiliated Monitoring, United Central Control, National Monitoring Center, Vivint, Richmond Alarm, Wegmans Security, Brinks Home Security and Security Central. ADT went live with Chesterfield County of on September 29th.

Tommy Tucker, Chesterfield’s Director of Emergency Communications, said they are excited to bring this advancement in service to the community. “Increasing our ability to assist in saving lives and protecting property by decreasing the amount of time it takes to respond to and subsequently dispatch in-progress alarm calls,” Tucker said.

IACP Endorse Model Alarm Ordinance

The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) recently passed a resolution that endorses the Model Alarm Ordinance as a tool for promoting “bests practices” to achieve a reduction in alarm dispatches and recommends the ordinance to its 31,000 members in 165 countries.

The ordinance, already in use in approximately 1,000 jurisdictions, was developed and tested in a cooperative effort between the Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC), the IACP, and the National Sheriffs’ Association.

The IACP resolution notes that the organization “recognizes the need for and value of enforcement tools and alarm management processes recommended in this Model Ordinance to achieve the desired reduction in alarm dispatches experienced by police agencies.”

“When fully implemented and enforced, the Model Ordinance results in an approximate 60% reduction or more in alarm dispatches,” said Stan Martin, SIAC Executive Director. “The ordinance focuses on the very small percentage of systems that cause problems for law enforcement and takes into account that 85% of alarm systems generate no dispatches in any given year.”

The Model Ordinance incorporates best practices that have proven to reduce calls for services, including:

  • ECC – Enhanced Call Confirmation (previously called Enhanced Call Verification or ECV) – Two calls to different numbers to determine the cause of the alarm and whether a dispatch is required. Video, audio, and other means of confirmation are also included in the referenced ANSI CS-V01 standard in the Model Ordinance.
  • Requiring Alarm Permits w/fees – Registration for security systems is critical for the effective management of alarm programs.
  • Limiting Free Responses/fines – Setting reasonable fines for alarm dispatches can be a significant deterrent to the occasional offender. Allowing a maximum of two free responses before incurring fines is advisable. Utilizing one free response will yield even higher dispatch reductions.
  • Ceasing Response to Chronic Abusers – The industry supports stopping response to the chronic abusers while including a reasonable appeal and restoration process.
  • Accepting Cancellations – Allowing calls to be canceled if originating party verifies response is not needed.

“SIAC recognizes and supports the importance of a strong relationship between law enforcement and the private sector,” said Martin. “As the industry’s voice on electronic security issues, SIAC is committed to continuing its decades-long collaboration with leading law enforcement organizations such as the IACP to support our shared mission to protect lives and property.”

Attend UL’s Building Innovation Summit, Aug. 31-Sept. 2

UL will host UL’s Building Innovation Summit 2021 on Aug. 31 – Sept. 2, 2021. This virtual event is for the building material and construction industry covering various topics of interest for architects and consultants,  building owners, manufacturers, fire safety professionals, and associations.

The built environment industry is transforming faster in recent times, as the COVID-19 pandemic changed how the construction industry does business. New technologies and practices, stricter safety and security regulations will continue to bring challenges to industry professionals. Construction Industry trends will bring rapid changes in global markets.

This three-day virtual event will feature informative sessions given by UL safety experts on a range of topics impacting the built environment, safety, and security. Hear what industry experts have to say about:

  • Enhancing safety and security in uncertain times
  • Innovations for a brighter tomorrow
  • Building strong foundations for a safer future

TMA members are invited to join us for this three-day summit and register to book seats in advance via the link below.

REGISTER NOW: https://www.ul.com/events/building-innovation-summit-2021

Preview the program schedule for each day.

Important info – Companies Operating in 540 Area Code

To: Security & Alarm Companies doing business in the State of Virginia 540 Area Code

View information for the Virginia 540/826 Area Code Overlay as it related to providers in the 540 Area Code.

The 540 and 826 area codes cover the northwestern and southwestern portions of Virginia. Some of the larger cities include Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Culpeper, Fredericksburg, Front Royal, Harrisonburg, Radford, Roanoke, Salem, Staunton, Waynesboro and Winchester.

As co-chairs of the Industry’s Virginia 540/826 Area Code Overlay Relief Implementation Committee, we ask that you read the attached information and distribute as needed within your organization.  We want to ensure all Alarm Companies and Security Providers have the information attached and are prepared with the dialing changes required.

If there are questions, you should reach out to your local service provider for more detailed information.

Co-Chairs for the VA 540/826 Area Code Industry Team:

Rita Schmitz, rita.schmitz@lumen.com

Chanda Brown, chanda.brown@verizon.com

TMA Joins in Appealing CA Background Check Legislation

On July 15th, TMA joined a diverse group of over 20 trade associations and businesses in signing on to an amicus letter to the California Supreme Court, requesting that the Court reverse a lower court decision on a background check decision.

If left standing, this decision would render most employment in the state severely delayed, and in many cases, they will no longer be possible at all. The amicus effort was led by the Consumer Data Industry Association (CDIA) and the Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA).

On May 26, 2021, the California Court of Appeals, 4th A.D (starting from Riverside County) called for the removal of significant identifiers (date of birth or driver’s license number) from criminal records.

Why is TMA involved?

You, our members, as well as others in our industry, protect people’s lives and property. Every day, businesses and families in California, as well in other states, trust that the people working in our industry are reputable and trustworthy people. Anything that would hamper our members’ abilities to conduct background checks could cause irreparable harm to our members’ customers. Drivers’ licenses are the most commonly used form of identification. Removing date of birth and driver’s license numbers as data identifying criminal defendants will handicap you and background check companies from being able to have a complete picture of an individual and be able to screen out those who should not be entrusted with people’s lives and property.

There is not likely a certain date by which the Court will decide to accept, or reject, the request. If that changes, TMA will alert you. In the event that the Court decides not to take this case, CDIA and PBSA will coordinate a strategy to seek redress by different means. That work will again require a large coalition of support.

View the full list of signatories on TMA’s website at https://tma.us/tma-joins-in-appealing-harsh-ca-background-check-legislation/

If you have any questions, please contact TMA Executive Director Celia T. Besore at cbesore@tma.us or (703) 660-4913.

Amicus signatories included:

  • California Bankers Association
  • California Chamber of Commerce
  • California Credit Union League
  • California Financial Services Association
  • Checkr, Inc.
  • Coalition for Sensible Public Records Access
  • Electronic Security Association
  • Lyft, Inc.
  • Moco Incorporated
  • National Consumer Reporting, Association
  • National Public Records Research Association
  • Public Records Retrieval Network
  • Security Industry Association
  • Southern California Rental Housing Association
  • Sue Weaver CAUSE: Commit to Always Using Screened Employees
  • The Monitoring Association
  • Tribal Gaming
  • Protection Network
  • Uber Technologies, Inc.
  • Vector Security, Inc.
  • Western Burglar Alarm and Fire Alarm Association.