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Roboguard is a true Early Warning System which is significantly different from other types of systems that are available. Security sales personnel do not always represent their systems entirely correctly, sometimes out of ignorance and sometimes for commercial gain. This article is written to clearly illustrate the differences between these types of systems.

Alarm systems were developed primarily to provide protection for property when the owner was absent. The assumption was that the owners presence was sufficient to deter intruders. Alarm systems need to be armed when you leave a premises and disarmed upon entering. Alarm systems generally provide little protection for the occupants of a residence or vehicle. Insurance companies normally insist upon alarm systems as they generally insure the property.

Perimeter protection systems are physical barriers and electronic systems that are erected and installed at the perimeter of a property to deny access to potential intruders. Examples of these systems are high walls, electric fences, barbed wire fences, active beam systems. Nowadays most of these systems can be complemented with electronics to detect if the systems are compromised which MAY indicate intrusion. These systems are easy to detect and generally easy to surmount. We include human guards under this definition.

Surveillance systems are primarily intended to provide a visual record of the events post hoc, ergo propter hoc (after the event). Although modern systems provide some image processing and can be used to trigger downstream systems, their main use is still to record and identify intruders reactively. These systems assume a competent authority is in place to act upon the information recorded thereby providing a deterrent.

Early Warning Systems (such as Roboguard) are designed to protect humans. Their primary function is to warn the inhabitants of a residence of the presence of an intruder with sufficient time to allow the resident to respond proactively. They are designed to reverse the element of surprise from the intruder to the resident.