Call your representatives! Support Industry Call for 3G Sunset Extension

As many of you know, AT&T and Verizon have announced sunsets for their 3G networks. AT&T is calling for a sunset date of February 22, 2022 and Verizon is calling for a sunset of December of 2022 – 10 months later. Because of the Coronavirus many of our customers have been reluctant to have alarm technicians enter their homes and businesses so that we can upgrade their equipment to make them compatible with newer networks.

We need your help especially if your business is headquartered in one of the following states:

AK, AZ, CA, CT, CO, FL, HI, IA, IL, IN, KS, LA, MA, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, NE, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV

The industry is seeking a longer transition period before AT&T sunsets its 3G network. We are asking elected officials to reach out to AT&T and urge them to push back their sunset to December 2022 which would make AT&T’s sunset the same time as Verizon’s proposed sunset, citing the pandemic as the reason.

Linked here is a spreadsheet that includes the staffers of all the members on the House and Senate Telecom Subcommittees. House Members appear first, scroll down to the second page to find Senators. Please use the staffer’s email to contact the Telecom Sub-committee member.

Ideally, if your business is headquartered in a Sub-Committee member’s district or state, we would urge you to reach out to that member. Even if your business is not located in the member’s district but are from his/her state, they will pay attention.

To find out who represents your district go to:

Please let me know if you have any questions. Our lobbyist Bill Signer or I will endeavor to assist you. Thank you in advance for your help in helping our industry.

We are asking you to send the message below to your elected officials:

Dear Representative/Senator:

The burglar and fire alarm industry is seeking your help in urging AT&T to delay the shutdown of its 3G cellular network which is currently scheduled for February 22, 2022 – a mere 16 months from now – to December 2022. This would then have both Verizon and AT&T shutting down their 3G network cellular networks at the same time.

Our industry protects the safety, and property of over 30 million homes and businesses. Additionally, many seniors depend upon us to monitor their personal emergency response systems allowing them to live at home. Many of these systems were installed using the 3G cellular network and must be upgraded, otherwise they will cease to communicate once the 3G networks are shutdown. Historically, AT&T recognized the need for an appropriate time period when it moved from 2G to 3G and provided 4 1/2 years for that transition. The industry estimates that we now have upwards of 3 times the number of 3G devices to change out as we did in the past transition.

Currently, the change-out requires an alarm technician to enter the premise and upgrade the existing equipment. Unfortunately, with the Coronavirus pandemic understandably many of our customers have been reluctant to have us enter their homes and businesses. For six months and counting this has curtailed what was to be a two year transition. Realistically, we are looking at least another nine months before we will be able to resume our normal ability to upgrade these systems.

While AT&T has been working with the industry for the development of equipment that will allow consumers to self-install equipment that would upgrade home security systems, to date that equipment is still in the testing stage. While we are hopeful that the equipment will work, we are not certain it will or whether the manufacturer will be able to meet the demand in a timely fashion.

Accordingly, we are asking you to speak directly with AT&T and urge them to move back their 3G cellular shutdown date to December 2022 and make it the same time as Verizon’s shutdown. Failure to do so will put millions of homes, businesses, and lives needlessly at risk.

Include your address on the emails that you send so they know you are a constituent.

 

 

TMA 2020 Achievement Highlights

With your support and participation, TMA has advanced the following initiatives so far this year:

  • With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, TMA initiated many efforts to assist and protect our members:
    • When members contacted TMA about the potential impact of stay-at-home orders and social distancing on their UL-listings if their operators worked from home, TMA quickly and actively engaged with UL on the creation of virtual work-from-home guidelines. TMA and UL continue to collaborate on the development of a permanent emergency work-from-home standard.
    • As strict travel restrictions began to impact members’ capacity to provide service, TMA took immediate action to have Electronic Security and Life Safety Industry personnel declared as Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce. An appeal submitted to the White House and to the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) by TMA and its Alarm Industry Communications Committee (AICC) was successful and the industry was explicitly included in CISA’s “Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce: Ensuring Community and National Resilience in COVID-19 Response.” TMA continued to work with other industry associations to advocate incorporating the CISA Guidelines in States’ Stay-at-Home Orders.
    • TMA set up an expansive repository of COVID-related resources on our website in February 2020 to provide timely information and actionable tools to support TMA members in sustaining their businesses during these unprecedented times.
    • We initiated weekly Virtual Town Hall Meetings on March 24, 2020. Critical topics included virtual workplace guidance, government loans, insurance, and legal issues, among others. Coming ahead is a series of six Town Halls on CO and fire codes.
  • Almost 31,000 alarm professionals have now registered for the TMA Online Operator Courses. TMA launched six brand-new modules for the Online Operator Course Level 2, focusing on leadership, conflict resolution, advanced call handling, standards, enhanced technology, and cybersecurity. In production is a recruitment assessment tool to assist managers with screening operator candidates. After presenting a webinar on Demystifying AI: How it Works and the Benefits for Video Monitoring in February, the TMA series of regular webinars was put on hold due to COVID.
  • The ASAP-to-PSAP service continued to surge with 72 active municipalities, 22 ready for implementation and 27 alarm companies connected with five more in testing. These alarm companies recognize the value of the service’s heightened efficiency and accuracy.
  • TMA reviewed and updated TMA CS-V-01-2020 Alarm Confirmation, Verification and Notification Procedures standard which was then approved by
  • TMA embarked on the development of a new ANSI standard, CS-AVS-01, Alarm Validation Standard, that will provide time-sensitive information to assist in determining the response level of a Call-for-Service and information that will support with real-time incident management through situational awareness.
  • Five new companies have joined TMA’s distinguished Five Diamond Program so far this year, and is on track to surpass 2019’s total designated companies, showing overall growth in the program.
  • TMA became the owner and administrator of the Installation Quality (IQ) Program at the end of December 2019. The newly-formed IQ Committee reviewed and updated the IQ Guidelines and other IQ materials and the program has just been relaunched.
  • Since both organizations have complementary missions, TMA is exploring a closer collaboration with the Partnership for Priority Verified Alarm Response (PPVAR).
  • With the support of TMA Committees and the Board, our staff converted the format of TMA’s Annual Meeting into a virtual event. TMA has also created OPS-TECH, a new event merging its Operations Management Seminar and Tech Summit. OPS-TECH will also be virtual and will include a first-time video surveillance day.
  • The Alarm Industry Communications Committee (AICC) continues to represent member interests on many issues on Capitol Hill and to the FCC, including Net Neutrality, TCPA, 3G Sunset, robocall legislation, and the FirstNet initiative.
  • TMA continues to exercise its FirstNet certification role for the security industry, providing access to the FirstNet network to qualified alarm and monitoring companies.
  • Working with TRG Associates, TMA published its Wage & Compensation survey, now available for purchase.
  • TMA recognized Affiliated Monitoring for its technological innovation with our Marvel Award and Securitas Electronic Security with the Monitoring Center of the Year Excellence Award. Staff from AvantGuard Monitoring Centers and Alarm Detection Systems also received individual Excellence
  • TMA Dispatch, our quarterly print publication, took on a whole new magazine-like look and feel. We expanded editorial content to provide a broader scope of topical and timely news for TMA members.
  • TMA launched a new website in the summer of 2020, offering visitors an appealing new look and feel with streamlined navigation.
  • TMA Signals e-newsletter provided weekly TMA and industry news updates, along with professional development articles.
  • Our NextGen group continued to grow in numbers and increase its engagement, with a new column highlighting members in the TMA Dispatch, along with a dedicated webpage. One successful meet-up was held at an industry event earlier this year.
  • Our relationships with Public Safety organizations have continued to thrive in 2020 through our joint engagement in the development of TMA-AVS-01 and an informational panel presentation delivered to TMA members as part of TMA’s Virtual Town Hall series. Organization leaders provided insights into how our industry can best support their members.
  • TMA members re-elected four Board members whose terms were expiring — Justin Bailey, Brandon Niles, Joey Rao-Russell and Kevin Stone. Each will serve a second two-year term.

TMA would like to acknowledge and thank the many volunteers that allow us to succeed in elevating the professional monitoring industry. We look forward to another productive year with your continued support and engagement.

Attend TMA’s General Membership Meeting, Oct. 21

TMA will host its General Membership Meeting on October 21st at 2:00PM [EST]. Set aside some time to hear the latest information on some of the great projects and initiatives that TMA volunteers and staff have been focused on in the past few months.
Like so many of your companies, our priorities shifted with the onset of the pandemic earlier this year, and we have initiated some projects that we hadn’t planned for prior to these challenging and unprecedented times. Our focus has transitioned to the development of resources, standards, and education that supports your company’s needs amid COVID-19.
Please mark your calendar to join TMA President Don Young, members of the Board of Directors, volunteer leaders, and TMA staff for this important meeting. 
We look forward to getting your feedback on our projects and to answering any questions you may have! 
REGISTRATION INFORMATION:
TMA General Membership Meeting
Wednesday, October 21, 2020 | 2:00PM [EST]
Please register at:
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4616370347323265808
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.
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Experiencing blocked or mislabeled calls?

TMA wants to hear from you! In response to the FCC request for examples, TMA seeks to learn how members’ communications with customers are being impacted by call blocking programs initiated by carriers to stop robocalls.  Please email cbesore@tms.us with your comments by Sept. 24th.

Please provide the following information for any instances:

  1. Whether the calls were blocked or mislabeled as fraud?
  2. What carrier did the blocking/mislabeling?
  3. When did the blocking/mislabeling occur?
  4. Were the blocked/mislabeled calls from the central station to the customer to verify the alarm signal or to the PSAP or other public safety entity to report the alarm?
  5. Did the central station contact or try to contact the carrier about the blocking/mislabeling?
  6. What was the response from the carrier?

Below, find the appropriate contacts for the different telecom providers to whom you should also report your experiences.

AT&T:

Contact AT&T by phone at  800-337-5373 (prompt 1) or via email at

dl-GFMOBusinessFra@att.com

Contact AT&T’s third party analytics company, Hiya, at https://hiyahelp.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/requests/new

 

T-Mobile:

Register in with T-Mobile at https://www.calltransparency.com.  According to T-Mobile, the Call Transparency list “allows legitimate businesses and other legitimate callers a place to provide their phone numbers and information about the traffic on those numbers.”

Report when a call has been incorrectly blocked or labeled at https://feedback.fosrvt.com/.

 

Verizon:

Register  with Verizon’s third party vendor, Transaction Network Services (TNS), at https://voicespamfeedback.com.

According to Verizon, it offers two robocall mitigation services:  (1) Call Filter for Verizon wireless customers and (2) Spam Alert for Verizon wireline residential customers.   Both services label calls based on analytics from TNS.   Customers and calling parties can report if telephone numbers are inadvertently being flagged as potential spam or fraud at the feedback website.

 

October Virtual Town Hall Addresses Public Safety Issues

Gain insights into the most critical issues facing public safety leaders today

Hear directly from top law enforcement and fire leaders

Monday, September 14, 2020 | 11:00 AM

Please join the president of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Chief Steven R. Casstevens; the president of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) Chief Richard Carrizzo; and the president of the National Sheriffs Association (NSA) Sheriff David Mahoney, as they share their top issues and how we can better support their critical work.

Don’t miss this important conversation.

*Member-exclusive event.

AICC Seeks Comment – Recent Equipment Prohibitions

AICC is evaluating the possibility of filing comments regarding the impact of recent prohibitions on use of equipment (including video surveillance) from ZTE and Huawei (and their affiliates) on its members. Comments are due September 14. Any information you can about your company in response to the following questions would be greatly appreciated:

  1. Does your company provide services or equipment to any Federal government agency, or to any entity pursuant to the Federal Acquisition Rules (FAR), either as a primary contractor or subcontractor?
  2. Does your company use equipment manufactured by or services provided by ZTE, Huawei, Hytera Communications Corporation, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Company, or Dahua Technology Company? This question is not limited to equipment or services you offer; it includes any usage of equipment or services from these companies whatsoever.
  3. If you do not know the answer to question 2 above, please provide a sense of how difficult it might be to determine the answer.

As noted, the next opportunity to provide feedback on the subject to regulators is September 14. Accordingly, we ask that you please forward your responses to Sal Taillefer (sta@bloostonlaw.com) as soon as possible.

TMA Events – Read the New Issue of TMA Dispatch

Go online now to view the latest issue of TMA Dispatch.

See what TMA has planned for its fall events – the Annual Meeting and OPS-TECH. Learn how TMA staff and leaders are putting the power of the Internet behind its programming to deliver its insightful and inspiring content and some powerful networking – with some fun mixed in along the way. And, there’s a whole lot more great news to read!

Enjoy!

 

 

The Monitoring Association Reveals Average Compensation for Monitoring Center Managers in 2018 to be $82,000 in New Study

TMA released its latest Wage & Comp Survey—the purpose of which is to provide monitoring and security services companies with salary and benefits information to guide hiring and compensation decisions. The Survey was created in partnership with TRG Associates, Inc., a consulting firm that specializes in the security alarm industry.

Participation in the Survey was open to all security monitoring companies. Company specific information is not published to ensure confidentiality. The Survey collected wage and benefits information from the year 2018 for the following areas:

  • Demographic Data
  • Types of Monitoring and Installations
  • Monitoring Center
  • Executive & Operational Management
  • Dealer/Installer
  • Customer Support
  • Sales and Marketing
  • IT & Telecom Services
  • Benefits Packages

The Wage & Comp Survey is now available for sale on TMA’s website. The purchase price is $400 for TMA members and $500 for non-members. Discounts are available for companies that participated in the survey—they will be contacted individually.

If you have any questions, please contact Celia Besore, TMA Executive Director, at cbesore@tma.us or at 703-660-4914.

The Monitoring Association Releases Revised ANSI-accredited Standard

In its on-going effort to reduce the occurrence and impact of false dispatches, TMA has released the latest revision of its ANSI-accredited standard, TMA CS-V-01-2020 (Version August 01, 2020). This standard takes alarm verification and confirmation to its next level by defining multiple-attempt confirmation, biometric, audio and video confirmation. The standard is now available for free download.

Learn more about TMA’s standards activities at https://tma.us/standards/.

TMA Welcomes Texas PSAP

The Galveston County Sheriff’s Office (GCSO) is the 72nd Emergency Communications Center (ECC) in the United States to implement the (ASAP) and the 10th ECC in the state of Texas to implement ASAP. The GCSO went live with Vector Security and Rapid Response, at 8am CDT on Wednesday, July 22nd followed by Security Central, Guardian Protection, Tyco (Johnson Controls), the National Monitoring Center, AT&T Digital Life, Vivint, Affiliated Monitoring, and Protection One.  Alert 360 and ADT are scheduled to go live with the GCSO within the next 2-3 weeks. 

“The implementation of ASAP to PSAP within the Galveston County Sheriff’s Office ECC is anticipated to provide improved efficiency, accuracy and expedition responding to Police, Fire and EMS alarm calls.  This includes business and residential alarm calls within the unincorporated communities of Galveston County, the City of Hitchcock, the City of Clear Lake Shores, the Village of Tiki Island and the City of Bayou Vista”, said Lt. Margo Ihde, Division Commander of Communications. “The Sheriff’s Office is enthusiastic about this advancement to better serve our community; increasing our ability to assist in saving lives and protecting property by decreasing the amount of time it takes to dispatch and subsequently respond to in progress alarm calls.” 

Learn more about ASAP-to-PSAP.