According to the FBI, every 15 seconds a burglary is committed in the United States. It’s no wonder that home and business owners are installing increasingly sophisticated intrusion systems to help protect their properties.

And while today’s intrusion systems offer progressively robust life-safety features, many now include lifestyle and convenience functions such as remote controls for lighting, HVAC and other appliances as well.

Here’s an overview of recent trends in the residential and commercial markets, as well as a look at the sensors that are vital to any system.


Many current home intrusion systems offer features that surpass those of advanced commercial systems a decade ago. Today’s residential control panels are available with a remarkable array of features that may include:

  • Touchscreen color keypads
  • Vocal setup guides and voice-enhanced operation
  • Remote control via smartphone or tablet apps
  • Lifestyle applications including real-time news, traffic and weather information
  • Thermostat, lighting and appliance control via Z-Wave protocol
  • Built-in intercoms
  • Integrated support for IP cameras

Recently introduced was the first wireless security panel to feature a built-in web server that provides simplicity in installation, programming and system management. It offers complete system control via an integrated LED keypad with voice-guided menu or with a web browser or mobile app. The panel comes with a native Ethernet port and Wi-Fi and Z-Wave radios.


Advances in technology have not ignored the commercial intrusion market. Self-contained commercial systems can integrate with access, video and fire safety systems while offering elevator control in a single, intuitive user interface. And control panels accommodating up to 64,000 users are available for large commercial organizations. Systems can be scaled to manage a single site or a networked, multi-site configuration with up to 250 panels per system.

As with home systems, commercial systems can be monitored and controlled via the Internet, tablet or smartphone from the office, at home or across the world. They, too, can offer interactive services. PTSN, cellular or VoIP links ensure a reliable, consistent communication with a central monitoring station.

Intrusion alarm software adds features including wireless device integration – such as school panic buttons – email and SMS text event notification and additional DVR/video integration.


Integral to any intrusion platform, sensors continue to undergo constant upgrades. Motion sensors can now analyze an object’s shape, duration, speed and size as well as environmental factors. Using 5D processing, these sensors provide optimal discernment between a low-speed intruder and environmental signals such as reflected sunlight. Using sophisticated algorithms, including pattern analysis, these sensors can also determine an intruder’s direction of motion. This new generation of sensors provides strong suppression of nuisance alarms, which can result in costly fines to the end user.

There is a vast selection of sensors and environmental detectors, many of which are available in hardwire and wireless versions. Wireless sensors help protect areas that might have been impossible to secure in the past.

Putting it together

Each home and business is different. Today’s wide range of products and services ensures that there are panels, keypads, sensors and range of interactive services to meet the needs of every end user.

For dealers and integrators, these new and updated systems install quickly and may represent a valuable source of monthly recurring revenue with added monitoring services.

When it comes to intrusion systems, Interlogix is a leading end-to-end provider of control panels, hardwire and wireless sensors, smoke, heat and CO detectors and video and access control solutions for both residential and commercial installations.

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