The PSTN Switch-off and How it will Affect the Monitoring of Your Alarm
What is Happening?
By the end of 2025, all analog (PSTN) phone lines are being swapped for digital ones. These lines have been being phased out gradually but by 2025, all phone lines will have been changed over to IP.
The PSTN has been in place in the UK for decades. Under increasing pressure in the advance of technology and high demand for instant communication, changes are being made across the world to switch to digital lines from analogue.
Whilst you may have arranged for your phone to change over, it may also have an impact on the monitoring of your alarm. Previously, alarm systems may have used this PSTN line to monitor and send signals to the alarm receiving centre. If you have your alarm monitored via this path it is important that you take action and contact your alarm provider, if you are unsure, it is best to check. If your alarm is 10-20 years +, it could likely be using these lines to monitor and will need to be upgraded.
Why is the PSTN Switch-off Happening?
Telecommunications has evolved hugely over the last 50 years, largely down to the progression in technology and the use of internet in the most recent years. The large move form PSTN will move all of our phone lines over to IP. Similar to what has happened with 3G to 4G.
What Action is Required to Ensure your Properties Stay Protected?
Firstly, you will need to speak to your fire and security provider. They will be able to identify and let you know if your alarm system is monitoring via a PSTN path. They will be able to advise you on what steps need to be taken or if you are unaffected by this change.
If your fire or security alarm does rely on this PSTN path to monitor, it is best to change the device over to a more modern monitoring device. Again this is something to discuss with your alarm provider as you will require a signal strength test to decide what is the best equipment for you.
It is unlikely that your alarm system will need an upgrade to be compatible to this newer monitoring device however, our team are on hand to help you decide the best solution for you and your property.
Why Now is the Time to Take Action?
By the end of 2025 all analogue phone lines will be out of use. This means as of the start of 2026, all calls will be made via IP connections. Whilst you may think 2025 is years away, these lines are gradually being phased out and could happen in your area at any time. After the switch-off at the end of 2025, devices that rely on PSTN to communicate will not signal, leaving properties unmonitored and unprotected.
If you take action before your analogue phone line is removed, you will ensure that there is no downtime in the fire safety and security of your property. Should the line be removed when the monitoring is still connected, this could cause issues with the alarm and not to mention the time where you will be without alarm monitoring.
The annual monitoring of the newer devices is not usual more than the older models. Additionally, you can be saving money where you no longer need to pay for the phone line in place.
What Happens if I don’t Upgrade?
Any systems still operating on the PSTN line will no longer work and you will likely require an engineer visit to program this path off as your system may appear with a fault.
Eliminating this signaling path will decrease the security of you alarm and should be checked with your insurers if you are not going to upgrade the device. Some insurance companies do require a dualpath monitoring device in place for a fire or security system.
How can we Help?
Don’t worry, we can assist in bringing your fire and security systems up-to-date with a new monitoring device. Please contact us for advice