World Wide Security changing the PSAP data model for mPERS

The company’s PERS division, Life Button 24, is rolling out a new service that central stations can use to get timely PSAP data
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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

GARDEN CITY, N.Y.—Since the inception of mobile PERS, central stations have faced the problem of getting the devices to cheaply and reliably identify the appropriate public safety answering point during an emergency situation.

World Wide Security, a full-service security company here, has developed a service for mPERS that seeks to address these challenges while creating a new RMR stream for central stations. The company’s PERS division, Life Button 24, recently introduced an mPERS service that provides on-demand PSAP data for central stations, allowing them to efficiently identify the proper PSAP from which to dispatch emergency response services.

For some monitoring companies, the cost of obtaining PSAP data can be a major deterrent, Mark Fischer, director of product development, told Security Systems News. The Life Button 24 service, launched in April, represents a shift away from a traditional PSAP data model that, for some central stations, could be cost-prohibitive, he said.

“One of the problems central stations have in dealing with mobile is being able to get through the backdoor for 911 or PSAP data for dispatch, based on where someone is located,” he said. “Customers or central stations would have to subscribe to a database through a major supplier, and it’s really very costly.”

One reason for the high costs, Fischer explained, is that the typical payment model for database suppliers is often dictated by the number of accounts out in the field, rather than the number of times the database is used for dispatch information. Another model, he said, gives monitoring companies a fixed quota of dispatches for a given timeframe, charging overage fees when a company exceeds the limit.  

These models can place a burden on central stations by “increasing their cost of operation substantially,” Fischer said.

Because the databases are prone to constant change, with different PSAPs often being reassigned to new localities, the security industry has to rely on private suppliers of PSAP data to stay up to speed on changes, Fischer noted. Because the service accomplishes the dual task of boosting RMR while enhancing the reliability of mPERS, Fischer expects central stations and PERS dealers to gravitate to it.

“So far, the companies we’ve been working with have been able to change their model for providing the service, and that helps keep the cost down,” Fischer said.