Duress Codes For Alarms Systems

By: Ari Erenthal, Published on May 02, 2017

An alarm system can call for help in the event of an attempted break in, but only if it is armed. If an adversary forces an authorized user to disarm the alarm, however, that adversary can gain entry without alerting emergency responders. Therefore, alarms in high risk locations are sometimes programmed with a duress code, which is a code that disarms the alarm while sending a panic signal to the central station monitoring company. In this guide, we examine duress codes, including 

  • Robbery vs burglary
  • Robbery types
  • How to use a duress code
  • Duress code training
  • Duress codes affect alarm user behavior
  • Panic Signal Response
  • Best practices 

** ***** ****** *** call *** **** ** the ***** ** ** ********* break **, *** **** if ** ** *****. If ** ********* ****** an ********** **** ** disarm *** *****, *******, that ********* *** **** entry ******* ******** ********* responders. *********, ****** ** high **** ********* *** sometimes ********** **** ******* ****,***** ** * **** that ******* *** ***** while ******* * ***** signal ** *** ******* station ********** *******. ** this *****, ** ******* duress *****, ********* 

  • ******* ** ********
  • ******* *****
  • *** ** *** * duress ****
  • ****** **** ********
  • ****** ***** ****** ***** user ********
  • ***** ****** ********
  • **** ********* 

[***************]

Robbery ****** ********

********** * ***** **** involves *** *** ** force ** ****** ** force ******* * ****** present. **** ** ********* from********, ***** ** *** unauthorized ******** ** * structure **** *** ****** to ****** * ***** when ** *** **** is *******. **** ****** are ******** ** ******* or ****** **********, *** to ***** *** ******** owner ** * ****** safety ****** ** *** event ** * ********.

***** ******* *** ****** codes *** * *** of ********** ******* ****** as * ***** ** calling *** **** ****** robberies.

Robbery *****

*** *** ***** ** robberies *** ****-*** *** take-overs. 

** * ******* ****-** *******, * ****** ********* ******* approaches * ****** ********, making ** ****** ** be ********. **** ********* may********(************* *******) * ******, or ****** ***** **** they ******* ***. *** goal ** * ****-** is ** *** **** as ******* *** ** quietly ** ********. *****, an ********* **** ****** hand * **** ** an ******** **** * list ** ***** *******. This **** ** ********* is ****** *****-******. ****-******* ********* *** the **** ****** **** of **** ******* *****. 

** * ***********-**** *******, *** ********* ** adversaries **** ** **** noise ** ******** ** order ** ********** *** rob * ***** ****** of ****** ** ****. The *********** ******** ***** weapons *** ***** ** at ******. ****-**** ********* by ***** ****** *** extremely ******** *** *********, and ***** ** ***** little ****** ** ******** a ***** ****** ****** the ******** ** ******** with ***** **** ** **** rail. *******, ** ** adversary ****** ** ******** to ***** * **** in ***** ** **** entry ** * ********* or * *****, *** employee *** **** *** opportunity ** ***** * duress ****. ****-**** ********* are *****. 

How ** *** * ****** ****

** ********* **** **** ***** or ****** ** ***** to **** ***** ** a ********* ******** ****** be ***** ********* *********. Having * ******** ****** code ********** ***** *** adversary *** ********** ** complying **** ***** ****** while ************** ******* *** help. *** ***** **** function ******** ***** * user ****** * ****** code, **** ** *** to **** **** * duress **** *** **** entered ***** ********* ********** arrive. 

******* **** *** ********* with ** *********'* ****** is *** **** ******** ** hold-ups *** ****-**** *********. If ** ********* ****** wants ** ***** *********, and ** *********** *** safety ** ** ********, vendor, ** ******** ** order ** ** **** to ** **, *** safest ****** ** ****** is ** ***** **** to ***** **** **** like *** *****. ** the ********* ******** ** employee ***** * ***** button ** **** ** the ***** ** **** for ****, **** *** become ***** ** **********, which ***** **** ** tragic *******. ******* **** company's ********** ** ********** policy ** ********** *** this.

Duress **** ********

*** ******** *** ** expected ** *** * panic ****** **** ** trained ** ** **, and ****** **** ******** on * ******* *****. Victims ** ********* ***** become ******* *** ****** their ************. **** ******* training *** ****** **** employees **** **** ** do *** **** *** to ** ****** * robbery. 

**** ** ********** **** with ****** *****. ** an ******** ** **** to ********* *** ***** ***** the ****** **** ****, they *** ************* ** so **** ****** ** enter ***** **** ** an *********. *********, *** employee **** ** ******* to *** *** ****** code, *** **** ******** doing ** ** * regular *****. *** ******* *** regularity ** **** ******** depends ** *** ******* the ******** ** ****** to ****. *** ***** installer ****** ******* **** training **** *** ****** responsible *** ******** ** the ********, *** **** person ****** ** ******** to ********* ******** ******* procedures **** *** ********.  

Duress ***** ****** ***** **** ********

****** * ****** **** can **** ****** *** danger **** ********* ** high-risk ********** *** ************* face. Businesses **** ******* ***** robbers **** ** *****, pawn *****, ******* ******, and ***** ******* ****** need ** **** ******** ways *** ********* ** call *** **** ******* drawing attention ** **********. ********* with ** ********* ** often *** ****** ****** of ******, *** ********* who **** **** ********* services **** **** ****** are **** ****** ** simply ********* **** *** robber. This ********** *** ********* to ***** ** ******* and ******* ** ******** which, ** ****, ******* the ****** ** *********, vendors, *** *********, ***** limits *** ********* ** the ******** *****. 

Panic ****** ********

****** **** ** **** alarm ***** ******* **** seriously, ********* * **** priority ** ***** ***** of *****. **** ** especially **** ** *** customer *** ***** ************, allowing *** ******* ******* monitoring ****** ** ******** the ********* ** *** police. ******** * ****** code ** *** ********* of * ******* ********* gives police * ****** ****** of ********** ** * robbery ** **** ** take ******* ** *** situation.

Best *********

** ** ********* ******* aware **** * ***** signal *** **** ****, they *** ****** ***** or **** *******. *********, ***** effort **** ** **** to ** ********. ** ********* willing ** ***** * user ** ****** ** alarm **** ****** **** to ******* ******* *** code ***** *******. ****** codes **** ** ****** and ********** ** *** to **** ** *** siren.******* ****** ***** ****** never ** ****, ** case ** ********* ********** it (*.*.*-*-*-*,*** **** ****** **** run ******** **** *** middle ** *** ******). Users ****** ** ******* to ***** *** ****** code ****** *** ******* arguing ** ********* *** adversary. **** **** ********** should **** ***** ***** on * ******* *****, contacting ******* ******* ** confirm **** *** ****** signal *** ********, *** alarm ********** ****** **** the ****** ** ****** of ******** *** ** do **. **** ***********, all ********* *** *** need ** *** * duress **** ****** ** shown *** ** *****, so **** **** **** the ********** ** *** resultant ****** ******** ** they **** **** ** use *** ****** ****. 

Comments (6)

One of the ways we use duress codes is with access control. Almost all of our access control systems are integrated with intrusion via the DMP control panel and are pin plus card. We program in multiple user codes for each person including a duress code. So if someone walks up to a door and is being forced to open it, they scan their card like normal and enter their duress pin rather than their normal pin. This will, of course, disarm the system and unlock the door like normal. This combination of card plus duress pin alerts the central station. 

I don't know how but I missed that article when it was originally published. In some systems we have installed blue strobe lights in back rooms where employees are (not in front lobbies) to give a visual warning for when there's a holdup/duress situation in progress. This way they can decide if they need to trigger lockdown protocol and have everyone move to a secure area. Whenever we've done this the clients have had bullet proof glass, bullet proof sheetrock and reinforced doors. This protocol wasn't something we came up with but was implemented by the clients. 

That's a fine idea, actually. 

I remember years ago a residential customer got mad at me because she thought I kept saying a "Dress Code" was required.. True story..

I remember a case when the victim was beaten to death until the guards came in because he used silent alarm only.

Is there any statistics which would show how many robberies went south due to loud/silent alarm ???

Read this IPVM report for free.

This article is part of IPVM's 6,366 reports, 855 tests and is only available to members. To get a one-time preview of our work, enter your work email to access the full article.

Already a member? Login here | Join now

Related Reports

Breaking Into A Facility Using Canned Air Tested on Jan 28, 2020
Access control is supposed to make doors more secure, but a $5 can of compressed air may defeat it. With no special training, intruders can...
Access Control Request to Exit (RTE) Tutorial on May 13, 2019
For access controlled doors, especially those with maglocks, 'Request to Exit', or 'RTE' devices are required to override electrified locks to...
Forced Entry / Duress Access Tutorial on May 17, 2018
Even though access control normally keeps people safe, tragedies have revealed a significant issue. If users are forced to unlock doors for...
Door Closer Startup Lifedoor Aims To Prevent Fire Deaths on Jan 24, 2018
A startup named Lifedoor has a device with one basic function: Close doors during a fire. Closing doors is so powerful, UL and FDNY Fire Chiefs say...
The Interceptor Aims To Fix Vulnerability In Millions of Alarm Systems on Jan 08, 2018
Security executive Jeffery Zwirn claims a 'catastrophic' flaw exists in 'millions of alarm systems', and dealers could be liable if not fixed. His...
Power For Burglar Alarms on Jul 14, 2017
In order to operate, alarm panels require the high voltages found in electrical outlets be converted to the low voltages they run on. In this...
Batteries For Alarm Systems Tutorial on Jul 11, 2017
Alarm systems use backup batteries in order to continue working if an intruder attempts to disable the alarm by cutting power to the building. In...
Smoke Detectors Guide on Jul 06, 2017
Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors add a life-safety component to burglar alarm systems. As intrusion detection sensors are used to...
Burglar Alarm Partitions Guide on May 10, 2017
Many burglar alarm systems have a single designated level of access for users. A user can arm or disarm the entire alarm by entering a single code....
Arming States For Burglar Alarms on May 04, 2017
Burglar alarms give the user the ability to choose how much of their alarm is active at any time. Activating alarm sensors on windows and...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Access Control Online Show - July 2020 - With 40+ Manufacturers - Register Now on Jul 01, 2020
IPVM is excited to announce our July 2020 Access Control Show. With 40+ companies presenting across 4 days, this is a unique opportunity to hear...
Hanwha Face Mask Detection Tested on Jul 01, 2020
Face mask detection or, more specifically lack-of-face-mask detection, is an expanding offering in the midst of coronavirus. Hanwha in partnership...
UK Government Says Fever Cameras "Unsuitable" on Jul 01, 2020
The UK government's medical device regulator, MHRA, told IPVM that fever-seeking thermal cameras are "unsuitable for this purpose" and recommends...
Camera Course Summer 2020 on Jun 30, 2020
This is the only independent surveillance camera course, based on in-depth product and technology testing. Lots of manufacturer training...
Worst Over But Integrators Still Dealing With Coronavirus Problems (June Statistics) on Jun 30, 2020
While numbers of integrators very impacted by Coronavirus continue to drop, most are still moderately dealing with the pandemic's problems, June...
FLIR Screen-EST Screening Software Tested on Jun 30, 2020
In our FLIR A Series Test, the cameras' biggest drawback was their lack of face detection, requiring manual adjustment when screening each...
Dahua Buenos Aires Bus Screening Violates IEC Standards and Dahua's Own Instructions on Jun 30, 2020
Dahua has promoted Buenos Aires bus deployments as "solutions that facilitate community safety". However, they violate IEC standards and,...
UK Firm Markets False Fever Screening, Hikvision Disavows on Jun 30, 2020
A UK security firm falsely claimed its Hikvision-based thermal solution could be used for "accurately detecting fever in any person", even claiming...
Industry Study: 83% of US Temperature Screening Sellers Falsely Say Not Medical Devices on Jun 29, 2020
83% of US companies selling temperature screening devices, aka 'fever' detectors, claim they are not medical devices, contrary to FDA definition,...
Manufacturers on Virtual 'ISC West' 2020 and Potential ISC West 2021 on Jun 29, 2020
With the 2020 ISC West show now officially canceled, attention turns to Reed's new "ISC West 2020 Virtual Event" planned for October and for the...