Florida Adopts Statewide Enhanced Call Verification Standard

New state law requires at least two calls for alarm response; designed to minimize false alarms


FRISCO, Texas – On July 1, 2006, the state of Florida will become the first in the country to activate a state-wide law requiring Enhanced Call Verification (ECV) to help reduce the number of dispatches for police departments. ECV is the process by which an alarm monitor must call a second phone number (if the first call is not answered) to help determine if a dispatch is warranted. This effective policy is currently used in more than 100 municipalities across the country.

ECV is a proven tool in reducing false alarm dispatches. Protection One, a Washington alarm provider, saw a 48.7 percent reduction in false dispatches after implementing ECV this year. The policy also helped Vector Security reduce its annual dispatches by 42 percent on the east coast last year.

By calling a second number such as a cell phone, alarm companies can often disqualify alarms as false. Doing so prevents the unnecessary dispatch of police to the scene. Because the policy frees time for officers to respond to other calls, both the Florida Police Chief’s Association and the Florida Sheriff’s Association actively supported the legislation.

In addition to the law enforcement community and state Attorney General’s office, members of the fire, business, electrical and security industries support the bill as well. For years, Glen Mowrey, Ron Walters and Stan Martin have worked with the Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC) to promote the policy. “Not only does ECV help law enforcement by reducing unnecessary dispatches, it also helps reduce the amount of alarm fines people pay,” said Martin, SIAC’s Executive Director. “Everyone benefits.”

The Alarm Association of Florida proposed the idea to the state under the direction of Bob Neely. Both Florida’s House and Senate unanimously approved the legislation, HB1351. Governor Jeb Bush signed it into law on Friday, June 9, 2006.

SIAC is comprised of four major North American security associations--Canadian Security Association (CANASA), Security Industry Association (SIA), Central Station Alarm Association (CSAA), and the National Burglar & Fire Alarm Association (NBFAA)--representing one voice for the alarm industry on alarm management issues. SIAC’s primary charter is to significantly reduce calls for service while strengthening the lines of communication with law enforcement professionals and end users. For more information, contact www.SIACinc.org.