3 Fire Safety Tips for the 4th of July

This Fourth of July, wouldn’t you rather worry about how well done the burgers are rather than how to put out a building or home fire? American Security’s fire safety systems can help keep you safe and in compliance with New York City’s Fire Code. Here are three tips to do just that!

  1. Open Your Gas Grill before You Light It

Always keep your gas grill open when lighting it. A closed lid can trap gas, leading to a build up. A single spark can ignite all that gas at once. Between the pressure of the built-up gas and the closed environment of the lid, you could end up seriously ruining someone’s day. 

  1. Maintain a Three-Foot Fire Ring around Your Grill

The U.S. Fire Administration suggests that you leave an area three feet wide around your grill or any open flames. This helps keep pets and children safe and also prevents spills or loose flames from causing damage to nearby buildings.

  1. Update Your Building’s Fire Safety Systems

NYC Fire Code compliance requires you to routinely update your building’s fire safety systems. That means checking smoke detectors, maintaining fire protection devices, and a whole load of other things. All this helps to reduce the risk of property damage or personal injury in case of a fire.

Stay Safe and Have Fun!

These three tips are just the tip(s) of the iceberg! American Security is glad to provide fire safety tips and solutions for the Fourth of July and all year round. 

Contact our experts today to find out how you can avoid fines and fires. Enjoy peace of mind this Fourth of July with American Security.
At American Security, we believe in keeping you, your property, and your family safe at every level. We offer advanced and customizable home security options from video surveillance to fire alarms and beyond. American Security is proud to be the New York area’s top choice for multi-tiered security since 1979. Give us a call today to speak with an expert and experience the American Security difference. Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.

Summer Security Tips During the Highest Month for Burglaries

Did you know the month of June has the highest amount of reported burglaries? 

American Security’s Tips and Security Systems Can Help. 

Even with travel limitations, people are planning to spend their summer quarantine at their vacation or second home. 

While you may also be seeking safety and seclusion, your home could be left unsecured. Summer may mean warm weather but it also means more break-ins. 

On average, burglaries rise about 10% between June and August.

Studies show, more people were burglarized in June (regardless of the year) than in any other month, according to a burglary survey.

Ensure your home is secure so you can enjoy your summer!

Check out these top summer safety tips: 

1. Make sure to lock all windows and doors

Forgetting to leave just one window in your house unlocked can allow burglars access into your home. These are easy targets so triple check your locks on all doors and windows before you leave your home. 

If you have a lot of windows and entry points, write down a checklist to make sure you don’t miss any before you leave. 

2. Set Your Alarm  

Don’t overlook one of the most crucial methods of keeping your home secure. Properly setting your alarm ensures that you and authorities will be alerted at even the slightest disturbance. 

If you don’t have a video surveillance system or burglar alarm, ask us about the different systems we offer to keep your home secure. 

3. Get Your Neighbor to Park in Your Driveaway

This is a clever way for you to dissuade burglars from your home while you’re away.

An occupied home could decrease your chances of a burglary. 

The good news is that burglaries are decreasing. However, when the average loss from a burglary is $2,799, you can’t afford to not take the necessary steps to ensure your home’s safety (and your peace of mind.)

Talk to one of our experts on how you can avoid burglaries and enjoy a stress-free summer. 

At American Security, we believe in keeping you, your property, and your family safe at every level. We offer advanced and customizable home security options from video surveillance to fire alarms and beyond. American Security is proud to be the New York area’s top choice for multi-tiered security since 1979. Give us a call today to speak with an expert and experience the American Security difference. Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.

3 Ways Video Security Can Keep You Safe & Healthy During the Pandemic

Want to reduce your chances of getting sick this season? 

American Security’s Video Doorman and Video Surveillance Can Help. 

Here are 3 ways video surveillance and video doorman can help you and your family stay safe and healthy during the pandemic. 

1. Ensure Contactless delivery 

With social distancing orders in place around the world, delivery orders have drastically increased. But even having your household items and groceries delivered comes at a risk. 

Your carrier may be friendly but in times like these, it’s best to take caution. With delivery people taking

Using a virtual doorman ensures all your deliveries are truly contactless which can help reduce your exposure to unwanted germs. 

2. Monitor Your Business or Property 

Working remotely? 

Millions of people are working from home due to the pandemic. Many of them have no way to monitor their business or facility without physically going to the location – putting themselves and others at risk. 

Video surveillance and Virtual Doorman makes it easy for you to monitor your property as much as you want throughout the day without putting yourself and others in harm’s way. 

3. Know who’s knocking

Robberies happen. By knowing who’s knocking at your door before answering, you can keep you and your family safe from burglars entering your home. 

We urge everyone to support a healthy community by working from home if possible. If you are interested in adding aspects to your home to help support social distancing, American Security provides solutions to help protect your family and peace of mind during this challenging time.

At American Security, we believe in keeping you, your property, and your family safe at every level. We offer advanced and customizable home security options from video surveillance to fire alarms and beyond. American Security is proud to be the New York area’s top choice for multi-tiered security since 1979. Give us a call today to speak with an expert and experience the American Security difference.Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.

Essential Home Security Tips and Best Practices

It is never pleasant to consider, but a burglary takes place every 25.7 seconds. If we zoom out to the totality of the situation, the latest FBI burglary statistics estimate that there were 7,196,045 property crimes committed in 2018 and those victims suffered losses at an estimated $16.4 billion. Whether you have just moved into a new home or have been at your residence for many years, it is always a good idea to assess your home’s security and strive to make your home & family safer. Our security experts have put together 3 best practices to help secure your residence.

1. Lock Your Doors, Sliding Doors & Windows

This may be simple in concept, but to this day, about 30% of all burglars gain access to a dwelling through an unlocked entry point such a door, window, or balcony.  So whether you put a sticky note by the front door or set a reminder on your phone, lock all your doors and windows before leaving. A few other tips to enforce security around your main entry points are:

  • Install sensors for your sliding doors & windows
  • Go old school and secure your sliding glass door with a dowel 
  • Plant bushes under your first-floor windows 
  • Don’t forget the garage – install a home automation system and never leave the garage unlocked ever again

2. Set Up a Security System

A home is 33% less likely to be broken into if there is a visible home security system in place. To choose a system you feel comfortable with, evaluate the vulnerabilities in your home and neighborhood. Check out the latest crime statistics in your neighborhood or call your local police department and ask questions. When choosing your home security system, keep these factors in mind: 

  • Customer service and brand reputation
  • Extra monitoring capabilities like smoke and fire protection
  • Sensor capability for doors, windows, and other entryways
  • Does the system come with security cameras?
  • Does the company have access to 24/7/365 central station approved by the New York City Fire Department?  \

3. Secure Your Wifi

Having a cute Wi-Fi name like “ILoveMyWifi” is wonderful and may make your home feel cozy, but in this day and age, considering the technology and how connected everything is, you may be giving criminals direct access to your home. Here are a few tips to secure your Wi-Fi network from cybercriminals:

  • Enable Encryption and Two Factor Authentication 
  • Rename and hide your network 
  • Create passwords that are as strong as a fortress 
  • Use a firewall 

At American Security, we believe in keeping you, your property, and your family safe at every level. We offer advanced and customizable home security options from video surveillance to fire alarms and beyond. American Security is proud to be the New York area’s top choice for multi-tiered security since 1979. Give us a call today to speak with an expert and experience the American Security difference.Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.

Hidden Threats to Building Security

As technology continues to progress at an unprecedented speed, possible threats to building security are becoming harder to detect using traditional security methods. As building managers, conducting internal risk assessments is an integral part of the job. However, due to technological advancements, there may be some cyber-security threats that until now have been off your radar. Security should not be left behind as increased complexity also means new threats and risks.  At American Security, our goal is to keep your building safe and secure from all threats, cyber and otherwise. While around the clock cyber security is a full time job, it is vital to be aware of how your building might be uniquely vulnerable. Below, we’ve included the top hidden threats to building security so you can stay one step ahead.

1. Integrating Technology Safely

‘Smart buildings’ are becoming more and more common, resulting in easier access to key information, seamless communication between building management and tenants, and even remote doormen. However, whenever technology is integrated, with it comes the risk of it being compromised. Primarily, the risk of sensitive data ending up in the wrong hands. Instead of attempting to integrate smart software on your own using multiple different platforms, use one trusted company to not only recommend and install custom smart technology, but also to remotely monitor your building 24/7 to keep you and your tenants 100% protected, 100% of the time.

2. Multi-Layered Protection

Gone are the days where a simple password is good enough to protect you and your data from potential cyber threats. Consider cloud-based security solutions that are not only monitored digitally by security professionals, but sync all your systems together, allowing you to protect your valuable data and resources in what is essentially a virtual bank vault. Depending on the type of building you manage, you should be aware specifically of what cyber thieves might be after. If your tenants are business based, digital criminals will be looking to access sensitive, proprietary information, or remotely install malware for various ill-intentioned purposes. To mitigate this risk, consider speaking with your tenants to learn how they are currently protecting their businesses digitally, and work with a professional security company to conduct an internal risk assessment to make sure everything is as secure as possible. If the building you manage is residential, cyber criminals will most likely be looking to access information related to specific identities, like credit card information or passwords. You can help protect your residents from potential identity theft by making sure you have systems in place that add an extra layer of protection in addition to whatever methods your tenants are already using. In both cases, open a dialogue to discuss concerns and potential solutions to stay ahead of the game.

3. Building Access

As many buildings continue to invest in more modern methods to allow residents and visitors to gain entry to a property, for example remote security products like the Ring doorbell or even more benign virtual assistants such as Alexa, the potential risk evolves as well. These systems can lull us into a false sense of security, but they are by no means fool proof. A savvy hacker with the right information would potentially be able to gain remote or even in-person access to a property, without you or your tenants being any the wiser. For example, a clever and ill-intentioned cyber criminal might tap into a camera feed to see if a tenant is home before attempting a robbery. Just recently, Buick debuted a commercial in which a homeowner used their virtual assistant Alexa to start their car and unlock the doors remotely. While this level of convenience and automation is impressive, it also presents a security risk that digitally inclined thieves could take advantage of. Since almost all of these devices work through Wifi, as the building manager you can help protect your residents from such situations by making sure your buildings digital security solutions are air-tight. 

At American Security, we believe in keeping you, your property, and your business safe at every level. We offer advanced and customizable security options from video surveillance to fire alarms and beyond. American Security is proud to be the New York area’s top choice for multi-tiered security since 1979. Give us a call today to speak with an expert and experience the American Security difference.Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.

Secure Your Building with Smart Access Control

Any solid building security strategy should resemble an onion. To secure the integrity of your home or business, layers upon layers of protocols, trained personnel, and future-proof technology have to form the ecosystem that constitutes your buildings’ security. The more layers you have, the better. One of the core components of this security ecosystem is Access Control, or the ability to manage who can and who cannot enter the property. 

Types of Access Control Systems

Today, quick and simple access is required in many buildings to facilitate the steady flow of traffic, employees, cleaning services, maintenance, emergency responders, or utility workers. At the same time, not every single person can access all parts of the building equally. Because different access control products are designed to satisfy different security concerns, building managers and property owners must first decide what and who they need to protect. 

Let’s take a look at some of the available access control solutions available on the market today that can help secure your building:

Proximity

Proximity-based access control systems use radio frequency technology (RFID) to wirelessly open doors once they are within range of a proximity card reader.

Biometric

Considered to be one of the most secure authentication systems, biometric-based access control uses a system to match human features to grant or deny access.

Smart-Card Readers 

All-in-one smart-card readers are equipped with a programmable computer chip that allows building managers to get very granular as to which access points an individual is allowed to enter. A significant benefit of using this technology is that smart cards can be integrated with other systems and different technology readers.

There is no such thing as “overdoing it” when it comes to security. American Security has implemented a wide variety of access control solutions from proximity, biometric, fingerprint, to all-in-one smart-card readers all over New York and New Jersey. Systems can range from 1 to 65,000 users, and 1 to 1,000 doors.

At American Security, we believe in keeping you, your property, and your business safe at every level. We offer advanced and customizable security options from video surveillance to fire alarms and beyond. American Security is proud to be the New York area’s top choice for multi-tiered security since 1979. Give us a call today to speak with an expert and experience the American Security difference.

Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.

Online Shopping: 3 Security Tips Everyone Needs to Know

These days, online shopping is easier, faster, and more convenient than ever. Pretty much everything you could ever want or need is just a few clicks away. From groceries to gifts, and even larger ticket items like cars and appliances, the digital age has made shopping for anything and everything incredibly seamless. However, as we continue to integrate technology into our daily lives, we can often find ourselves desensitized to sharing our personal information online. At American Security, we use technology to protect homes and businesses from a wide range of potential threats. As security experts, we’ve gathered our top tips for protecting your private information from invisible threats so you can enjoy the ease of online shopping without the risk!

1. Become a Password Pro

It seems like just about everything these days requires a password. It can be tempting to use the same one that you know you’ll remember for everything, from your social media to your banking app. But this can be risky. If the wrong person gets ahold of a password for a single platform, they may guess (correctly) that you use that password for multiple uses. There are a few different ways you can mitigate this risk. Using a different password for all your different logins can seem daunting, but don’t be afraid to go old school. Keep a list of which password you use for which platform, and write it down using plain old pen and paper. Keep your password sheet in a safe place in your home for easy access. Another option is using the same password for everything, but making it extremely difficult for anyone to guess. Avoid using public information like names, birthdates, or locations. Use a combination of upper and lowercase letters, as well as symbols or numbers whenever possible,  for an extra layer of protection.

2. Identifying Safe Sites

Cyber criminals are quite sneaky when it comes to creating sites that look legitimate, but are created for the sole purpose of scamming folks out of their hard-earned money. Look for things that are verifiable, like a phone number, a physical address, and legitimate reviews. Real business owners care about the information on their site, so if there’s not much information, or if the information seems intentionally vague, this could be a sign that the website is a scam. Additionally, search for similar items you found on the site in question in other places. For example, if you find an amazing designer sweater for only a few bucks on a random site, but on a more trusted site the sweater costs a lot more, this could be an indicator that the site is a scam and a cyber attacker is after your credit card number. In short, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.

3. Watch Out for Email Scams

it can be very easy for cyber criminals to guess where you like to shop. They only have to peek at public information like your name, age, location and social media content. If you receive an email that looks like its from one of your favorite online stores, but that  requires you to open an attachment or enter personal information like your bank info or social security number don’t risk it. If you’re not sure, reach out directly to that store and ask if they recently sent out an email asking for personal information. Odds are they didn’t, and you just successfully avoided compromising your online security. Avoid clicking on any links or attachments that you don’t trust, and never give out sensitive information until you’ve verified the legitimacy of the sender and the purpose.

We hope these tips help keep your information safe and secure while you shop online. At American Security, we believe in keeping you, your property, and your business safe at every level. We offer advanced and customizable security options from video surveillance to fire alarms and beyond.

American Security is proud to be the New York area’s top choice for multi-tiered security since 1979. Give us a call today to speak with an expert and experience the American Security difference. Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.

Top 3 Things Every Building Manager Should Know

If you’re a building manager, odds are you wear a lot of hats. While the job description itself is fairly straightforward, your day to day responsibilities are ever fluctuating. Not only is it your responsibility to look after the building itself, but when issues arise, you are the first point of contact for tenants and landlords alike. From conflict resolution to maintenance repairs, good building managers are able to shift focus and priorities quickly and effectively. We’ve gathered the top 3 things every building manager should know to make your difficult job just a little bit easier. 

1. Communication is Key

A huge part of a building manager’s job involves communicating with people on a daily basis. Whether it’s tenants, landlords, or other professionals, knowing how to properly communicate and interact with people is key to making your job run more smoothly. The building you manage is an integral part of your tenant’s lives. That’s where they sleep, raise their families, and sometimes even work. When something goes wrong, as the building manager you are the first point of contact for them. As such, you may often get the brunt of people’s frustration and maybe even anger when there is an urgent matter they would like fixed. It’s important to remember not to take it personally. Their frustration is most likely with the issue itself, not with you. By remaining calm, cool, and collected, you can ensure that everyone feels heard and understood while assuring them that you are on their side and will work with them to get the problem resolved in a timely and effective manner.

2. Building a Network

Things break, that’s just a fact of life. When the AC stops working or the pipes decide to leak, you may find yourself scrambling to find someone to come fix it as soon as possible. This can be tricky in and of itself, depending on the time and situation regarding the issue. By building a network of professionals you trust and have communicated with beforehand, you can help make your job easier if, and when, things go wrong. Take the time to interview and vet professionals ahead of time in a variety of different areas, from plumbers to electricians. Ask them how much notice they need, if they are willing to come out on nights, weekends, or holidays, and what their fees will be. Next time something goes wrong, you’ll know exactly who to call, how much it will cost, and what the timing will be. This is information that you can pass along to your tenants and landlord, to assure them you have it all under control.

3. Surveillance in Advance

Unfortunately, video surveillance and alarm systems are one of those things that you don’t realize you need until it’s often too late.  American Security offers an array of top-notch security systems, from fire alarms to video surveillance, burglar alarms, video intercom systems, and more. If there is one thing tenants, landlords, and building managers can agree on, it’s that security and protection are of the utmost importance.  At American Security, we are the industry experts when it comes to protecting homes and businesses in New York City and the surrounding area. We customize each plan to fit exactly what your unique building needs. By partnering with American Security, you can have peace of mind knowing that your building is safe and secure.  

Want to know how American Security can help secure your lobby and building?  Click here to see our systems or talk to an expert to learn more!

#GiveUsYourWorstBuilding 

Let us demonstrate how we can turn around the most challenging environments. 

Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.

American Security’s ARCS Installation

Is Your Building in Compliance With the NYC Building Code?  

American Security’s ARCS Installation Will Help Ensure It is.  

In the event a catastrophe strikes, ensure that your building is code-compliant. An Auxiliary Radio Communication System (ARCS) Instillation from American Security will help you do just that!  

What is an Auxiliary Radio Communication System (“ARCS”)?

An ARCS is a code-driven, life-safety system consisting of a network of distributed antennae that enable first responders to communicate reliably from any location within a building.  

As a key component to in-building life safety operations, ARCS is designed for durability and survivability to provide continued operational use under extreme conditions.  

ARCS systems, in conjunction with fire alarm systems, protect New York’s bravest while they risk everything to protect us. 

Do I need an ARCS in my building?

NYC Building Code requires an ARCS to be installed, tested, and maintained in all new and many recently renovated high-rise (75 feet or taller) buildings.  Additional regulatory requirements for ARCS and Bi-Directional Amplifier (“BDA”) systems (outside NYC) include the International Fire Code (IFC – Section 510),NFPA 1221 (2016 Edition), NFPA 72 (2013, 2010 Edition), and IBC Section 916 (2015 Edition), IBC Section 915 (2012 Edition). 

What are the ongoing requirements for maintaining ARCS?

Fire Department rules set forth standards and requirements for daily inspection, annual certification, and five-year recertification of ARCS systems.  FDNY requires that the testing of ARCS be supervised by a professional possessing both FDNY and United States Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) licenses.

American Security is licensed and certified to provide turnkey ARCS and BDA system solutions to keep your building code-compliant, including:

  • System Design
  • Filing, certification, and permitting
  • Installation
  • Testing, Commissioning, and FDNY Inspection
  • Ongoing monitoring and maintenance, including annual and five-year certifications

Keeping up to date with changing codes and rules can be tricky. Consolidating services with the right vendor helps ensure required inspection, maintenance, and testing requirements are met. It prevents you from fines that could result if you get caught off-guard with an unannounced fire department inspection.

Contact Us

American Security’s professionals will train your staff on how to effectively use their systems, keeping them prepared if the unthinkable happens.

Protect your property, along with the people in it.  For more information about getting an Auxiliary Radio Communication System Installation for your building, please give us a call at (718) 784-2880 or fill out the form below.

#BackUpYourVideo Protecting Residents and Yourself

Protect your tenants and investments with our Video as a Service solution.   

A simple and effective way to make sure both residents of buildings as well as owners who are subject to potential fraudulent slip-and fall claims is to ensure you always have a video backup.  American Security offers 24/7 CCTV surveillance systems which utilize color digital cameras, and state-of-the-art digital video recorders that will provide you with all the legal back-up you could need.  

What sets us apart from other security companies? 

These days many properties are equipped with surveillance cameras, but the problem lies within video storage. Specifically, where video is stored and for what duration. No one can predict exactly when they’ll need to pull their security footage and storage capacity is limited to less than 30 days.  American Security offers an innovative data storage solution that is changing the face of archiving security surveillance data. No longer will you have to worry about your video surveillance being overwritten or lost due to lack of space. Now, for as little as $8/month, you can back up your video for up to 3 years. 

Our company will visit your site, assess the situation based on what is necessary, install the equipment, monitor your properties, train building managers on how our systems operate and follow up periodically to keep your plan current and efficient. This tried and true method is what has kept our clients happy since 1979. 

#GiveUsYourWorstBuilding 

Let us demonstrate how we can turn around the most challenging environments. 

Visit our website at www.americansecurity.com or contact us to learn more about our solutions today.