Guarding Against Intruders

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The article because it in the beginning regarded. alarm monitoring
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May 7, 1995, Page 009005
The New York Times Archives
IN the Middle Ages, castle royalty discovered protection in the back of water-stuffed moats and turret-crowned towers. In historical China, an entire civilization determined safety at the back of a five,000-mile stone wall. Beefing up protection, it seems, is a accepted preoccupation.

But moats, towers and walls can all be breached. So how secure is your citadel?

“I do not care what type of protection you have got,” said Michael G. Kessler, president of Kessler & Associates, an investigative corporation in Manhattan. “If a seasoned desires to get in, he’s going to get in.”

As disheartening as which could seem, Mr. Kessler and other security specialists say there are numerous methods to protect your own home and circle of relatives from uninvited, unexpected intruders. Moreover, they say, whilst safety era has superior significantly in recent years, it has also become less steeply-priced and is now within the attain of most landlords, co-op businesses, apartment institutions or even personal owners.

“The expenses for internal security structures have come down fairly,” stated Michael Cherkasky, handling director of Kroll Associates, an worldwide investigating company in Manhattan. “Systems that used to fee tens of heaps of greenbacks now cost in the hundreds. And for a small, non-public device, we are literally speaking simply hundreds.”

Among the security systems now to be had to residential property proprietors — specifically to co-op corporations and condo associations, because of their potential to distribute costs among individual unit owners — are ones related to get entry to playing cards and electronic surveillance. The get right of entry to-card systems use magnetically encoded plastic playing cards in preference to metal keys for entry into buildings. Electronic surveillance systems, indoors and exterior, use tiny, without difficulty hidden cameras to provide consistent monitoring of lobbies, laundry rooms, elevators and stairwells.

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Peter Dukarm, sales manager for Jordan Intercom Systems within the Bronx, said that it was now feasible to put in a closed-circuit tv device that transmits a live picture of a lobby or vestibule location to every rental in a constructing.

“We can hook up our cameras to a building’s master antenna or cable tv,” Mr. Dukarm said, “and you can see who is at your the front door with out getting up from the couch.” Residents, he stated, truely track their tv to the cable channel that is assigned to the system.

“A few years in the past this turned into a rare factor,” Mr. Dukarm stated. “But prices are dropping, and cable operators have become greater cooperative.”

The cameras, he said, are so small and inconspicuous that they can be completely hidden. In addition a machine may be installation that allows numerous places to be monitored and then displayed simultaneously on a break up screen. The closed-circuit tv machine may be used along with a constructing’s existing intercom device, he stated.

“For a 5-story constructing, with one digital camera in the foyer, it’d commonly cost much less than $4,000,” Mr. Dukarm stated.

In addition to installing televisions in lobbies and laundry rooms, Mr. Dukarm stated, it is also prudent and relatively inexpensive to install movement sensors, audible alarms and automated “egress-handiest” locks at roof doors. All of that might value less than $2,000, he said.

In truth, maximum security professionals agree that the simplest and least expensive strategy for growing security in a multi-unit constructing is also the only this is most usually omitted.

“The fundamental rule of any security project is to examine your perimeter and ensure each door routinely latches when it closes,” stated Mark Berger, president of Securitech Group, a manufacturer of high-safety locks in Maspeth, Queens. All doorways to the exterior of the constructing — in addition to doors to the basement, roof and storage — ought to lock mechanically after they near.

For property owners searching out today’s protection systems, Mr. Berger said, a card-access device is an alternative to traditional key locks for access doorways.

“Every card is registered to a specific resident,” he said, adding that the get entry to cards are just like the ones used to advantage access to coins machines in financial institution lobbies. Such cards are tough to copy, he stated, and if a card is lost it is certainly taken out of the machine — rendering it vain — and a new card is issued. “For a 2 hundred-unit constructing, you are looking at $5 to $10 per card and about $1,000 for the device,” Mr. Berger stated.

Notwithstanding advances in technology and the growing affordability of sophisticated gadgetry, many safety specialists say that the best crime deterrent is the flesh-and-blood type.

“Since we have had a protection defend we’ve had really no robberies,” stated Ann Hamilton, president of the board of Southview Owners Corporation, a 104-unit co-op in Jackson Heights, Queens. Mrs. Hamilton stated that her co-op employed the uniformed shield after the residences of several aged citizens had been broken into whilst they have been out buying.

“We also desired to cut down on the number of strangers jogging around in the building,” Mrs. Hamilton stated, referring to transport humans and messengers. “Now the security guard takes in the applications and leaves a observe to your mailbox.”

The defend, she said, “offers the citizens a feel of security.”

Ethan Lazar, president of Cambridge Security Services in Manhattan, stated that even homes with doormen need to don’t forget hiring educated protection guards.

“In New York City there is a wholesome percent of doormen who aren’t security educated,” Mr. Lazar said, including that below a 1992 kingdom law, security guards have to be taught, fingerprinted and subjected to a history test.

For individuals who can not have the funds for the luxury of guards, doormen, closed-circuit tv and digital get admission to, there are other, less expensive, strategies that may be used to enhance safety in a constructing of any length.

“First, make sure your intercom system is running properly,” said Gerald A. O’Rourke, president of Strategic Controls, a security consulting organization in Manhattan. “Second, it is usually imperative to have true lighting fixtures and a clean view of the lobby from the vestibule. So forget esthetics — there need to be no curtains at the door.”

Mr. O’Rourke stated that elevators, rather than having a small mirror in a single nook of the automobile, need to have mirrors on the rear and facet partitions. “That manner, regardless of what path you’re drawing close from, you could see if each person’s in it,” he stated.

Apartment doors, he said, should have a latched deadbolt. With this type of lock, he stated, the deadbolt hooks into the mechanism at the door body instead of genuinely sliding into it. Moreover, he stated, each lock ought to have a cylinder protector on the out of doors of the door. The protector, he stated, is a round metal plate that covers all but the keyhole at the cylinder and forestalls the cylinder from being pulled from the lock.

“A burglar is looking for the road of least resistance,” Mr. O’Rourke stated. “The idea is to place sufficient barriers in the way that you may discourage him and he’ll go elsewhere.”