Most people who are considering an upgrade in security efforts ask this question. The problem is that the answer isn't a simple yes or no but a very long, drawn, out and complicated answer that is both 'yes' and 'no'. I will explain this below and hope it helps you make the best decision for your home or business security needs. You are the only one that can make the final decision as to whether or not a silent alarm is best for the needs of your home or business.
Combined with a monitoring service, a silent alarm can let the monitoring service know immediately that something is rotten in Denmark so to speak. The problem is that it takes time for the security company to respond. Most home and business owners have the option of response by the company in charge of your security system or response by police. There are pros and cons on both sides of the issue. The ultimate answer is that the alarm company representatives are likely to show up in less time than it would take police to respond (intrusions-even for businesses are not a high priority crime these days) but the hired security guards are generally unarmed, somewhat unskilled, and offer very little to deter a determined criminal.
Private security firms often employ low wage workers; some who have criminal records themselves. This is enough for many people to elect the option of having the police respond to alarms. Be aware however, that in many areas there is a charge involved when police respond to false alarms. Some police will allow two false alarms and then charge rather serious charges in order to avoid wasting the time of officers that could be protecting and serving elsewhere. All in all, many people will take the risks of security companies over the risks of being forced to shell out too much money in the event of false alarms. Be sure to check with the policies of your local security companies as well as your local police before deciding which is in the best interest of your home or business.
When it comes to criminals, most of the good ones have been around the block a time or two and are well aware of what the average response time in the area is for both police and various security companies. For this reason many of them will have staked out the place, have a good idea of what company handles your security, where valuable items are located, and have a quick escape route planned. In other words, having a silent alarm offers no real deterrent for the criminal with a game plan and more often than not he or she will be in and out and have what he or she is looking for well within the time frame of police or security company response.
More importantly however, silent alarms do not attract attention. Attention is something that the wise intruder seeks to avoid as it leads to capture and identification. Loud alarms work best for getting the attention of neighbors and passersby (for businesses) if nothing else for the annoyance factor. Neighbors will head outdoors in hopes of getting you to turn your alarm off only to discover that it isn't a false alarm. A neighbor reporting a crime in the act (an eyewitness) is far more likely to gain a faster police response than an alarm company reporting what may amount to a false alarm.
It is a great idea to have a security system installed in your home or business. It is also great that many home and business owners are considerate of their neighbors when choosing a silent alarm system. The truth of the matter is though that silent alarms offer no real deterrent to criminals and that is what most people seek when installing an alarm system.