AvantGuard monitors new mobile, smart phone security app

Forsse ready to offer dealers more RMR through mobile security
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Thursday, October 21, 2010

OGDEN, Utah—AvantGuard president Josh Garner has a vision for the future of security monitoring, and it’s a little outside the traditional security box.

“The monitoring of the future will be much more than just monitoring standard DACTs and IP communicators for alarm systems. There are all kinds of devices out there that have the ability to transmit data, and smart phones are just one of those items,” Garner said. “In the last year, we’ve been contacted by numerous parties who are venturing into some form or fashion of the mobile market, whether it be mobile security or mobile health/PERS.”

For example, Garner points out AvantGuard is currently monitoring all signal traffic for a new smart phone application from Denver-based Soteria Systems. The app, called Forsse, branches out from traditional security and, according to Garner, is a preview of things to come.

Soteria, a provider of personal safety systems for GPS-enabled phones, debuted its Forsse App for smart phones back in June with an eye toward making college campuses safer. The application expands the idea of audio-verified security beyond protected premises and extends protection to individuals wherever they go. The app—currently available on the Android OS and nearly ready for Blackberry and iPhone—appears as a button on a smart phone. Once activated, the button transmits live audio to the central station where the operator determines whether or not an emergency exists and whether help should be dispatched.

“We looked at the blue-light call box [on every college campus] and said, ‘There’s gotta be a better, more-mobile way to protect students than that,’” Soteria co-founder, Brad Zotti said. “We just figured there had to be a way to make this a more global solution.”

Building on the principle of creating a more global solution, Zotti said Soteria is ready to begin widening the application’s market by bringing Forsse to the security dealer channel.

“Forsse is a natural extension of home security,” Zotti said. “This is a way for dealers to increase their monthly RMR without any additional cost to them.”

AvantGuard is currently the only central station monitoring all Forsse signal traffic for Soteria, but the central has been considering reselling the service as an a-la-carte offering to its dealers.

“We have discussed that with Soteria, and we will follow their lead since it's their product. But it may very well make sense to do just that,” Garner said. “They have really pushed us in expanding our capabilities to receive alarms or events that are outside of the box.”