Moving to an all Internet Protocol (IP) Platform - the Impact on Your Commercial or Home Alarm System

Monday, April 20, 2020


You may already be aware, but we wanted to bring to your attention important plans that BT are introducing to their nationwide telephony network. These are going to have a big impact on existing and future commercial and home security alarm signalling systems.

In the same way that the country switched over to digital TV a few years ago, so telephone providers are now in the process of making a similar transformation. It’s a nationwide upgrade into the digital age, basically.

In future, BT envisages that accredited security service providers – like ourselves - will cease to install analogue equipment. Instead, the focus will be on systems and solutions that are designed to communicate digitally on an IP infrastructure.

In line with many leading providers, at Justice Fire and Security, we have a substantial number of customers nationwide who are still reliant on analogue phone lines to provide voltage and dial tone to connect their alarm devices. With BT’s move to an all IP digital platform, these existing configurations will change.

BT Openreach expects to complete the switch to an all IP platform by 2025. Although that end date is still five years away, this is an on-going, phased roll out, and certain signalling systems will become digitally dependent well before 2025.

As a result, if the security alarm at your business or in your home is operating off old analogue technology, it may not now work as it should. For this reason, as your NSI accredited security alarm provider, we need to ensure that your system is configured correctly as soon as possible, to remain operating effectively and continuing to perform its critical role during the transition period.  

Your Questions Answered

As the move to the new all IP Platform gathers pace, we thought it would be helpful to provide the following questions and answers.

Is it certain that my current system will require an upgrade?

Yes. If your system signalling is currently working on the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) analogue service, it will need upgrading before Openreach cease your exchange.

Will I need to completely upgrade my system?

No, only your signalling equipment although, depending on the age of your system, we may provide some advice on updating the complete system.

Is there going to be any cost implication?

Yes. There is a cost for us to change your signalling equipment over but, in most cases, you will save on line rental and telephone calls. So you will get the cost back over time and make savings going forwards.

I thought we already have a digital service?

The telephone network, whilst it has been digital for many years, is not yet completely IP. This is gradually happening over the next few years, as exchanges become updated and the PSTN is switched off.

Is this going to be disruptive to my day-to-day business operation?

No. It shouldn’t take much longer to do than a normal service inspection visit, however, we will advise on a case by case basis.

How soon will you be making the switchover to ALL-IP on my behalf?

The switch over is available now and we advise our customers and potential new ones to take this up straightaway, rather than wait until the last minute and risk being unprotected.

Will you still be my alarm system provider?

Yes. Nothing will change. You will still call us for service and maintenance and our Alarm Receiving Centre will be unchanged.

To book your upgrade appointment, or for any enquiries relating to your current commercial or home security alarm system, call our main Birmingham switchboard on 0845 468 0927.