5267473_ee48a29599_m A few weeks ago, I finally got around to watching Michael Moore’s film, “Bowling for Columbine“, which I had heard a lot about, but just never gotten around to seeing. In my mind one of the great scenes is where he goes around some homes in Toronto Canada to see if it’s true that Canadians don’t lock their doors.

I can tell you that, regardless of what country I lived in, if I lived in a city as large as Toronto, I’d be locking my doors and wanting a home security system, if for nothing else than reducing excessive home insurance premiums, (apparently you can get savings of up to 20% in some areas)! Now, I don’t particularly feel threatened by home invasion or theft in our sleepy little town, but today I’m looking at what one of the big players in home and commercial security, ADT alarm has to offer as far as a website and online services, check out the end of the post for some of the things I think would be cool additions to this site. More after the jump…


With over 130 years of experience, ADT now helps protect over 7 million American homes just like yours and over 25 million homes worldwide.

As the number one security company in the nation, ADT knows how important it is to get a fast, accurate response to every emergency situation in your home.

ADT currently protects:

  • 90% of Fortune 500 companies
  • 80% of top US retailers
  • 50% of top US banks
  • Over 100 airports nationwide
  • With the same ADT alarm system used in over 7 million American homes just like yours

ADT Security System 

They’ve got some good offers too. A free security evaluation, a current offer of a free wireless security system when you sign up for a monitoring program and a comprehensive FAQ answering all the likely questions that a prospective client would have, the site is generally very good. More information would be helpful on the home security page, rather than jumping into a questionnaire and sending your details off to a sales rep, or signing up online, perhaps some more information on what the system entails would help coax visitors to convert to sales.

ADT also does an affiliate program, not like the online ones were getting so used to with amazon et al, rather word of mouth from satisfied customers. Send a new client their way, they’ll send a cool $50 your way. Theoretically, if you were a good enough salesperson, you could probably get a totally free security service subscription.

A Potential Google Maps Mashup?

As I was looking over the website a thought occurred to me that ADT would have a great database of break-in and alarm activations. Would a map of the US on the home page, showing real time alarm activations by state or even city be an incentive to customers visiting the site to purchase one of the monitoring packages?

Maybe I’ve been reading too much lifehacker and other sites that feature various web2.0 mashups, but I’d think that mashing this data that would already be streaming in their computer system with the beauty of Google maps. They could anonomize the data by showing only the city rather than the post code or more detail. Something like this, or a statistic of number of break ins per minute in the viewer’s area, (using their IP address to resolve their location, for example) would be pretty cool. 


Published by Mike Thomas

Mike Thomas P.Eng. ENV SP, is the author of UrbanWorkbench.com and Director of Engineering at the City of Revelstoke in the Interior of British Columbia, Canada.

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