Learn more about ABUS alarm systems in our glossary © ABUS

Alarm systems Security from A to Z

Do you know what the definition of an "alarm system" is? What is meant by a "zone"? This and much more from the world of alarm technology is explained in our comprehensive glossary.


Active intrusion protection

Even an attempt to break in is reported. This can be done using alarm components that not only combine state-of-the-art wireless technology with effective mechanical intrusion protection (mechatronic detectors), but also monitor attempts to prise open a door or window by means of innovative magnetic field sensors.

Arming, disarming

"Activation" of the alarm panel – the panel triggers an alarm if an intrusion is detected (e.g. a door is opened); "deactivation" of the alarm panel – the panel does not trigger an alarm if an intrusion occurs. Danger detectors are programmed differently: If smoke is detected, for example, there is an alarm even if the alarm panel is disarmed.

Alarm system

Common term for a burglar alarm system or danger alarm system.

Alarm type

Alarm systems may have the following alarm types: internal, local, external or silent.


Gerät, das eine Alarmmeldung akustisch (Sirene) oder optisch (Blitzlicht) übermittelt. Auch Wählgeräte sind Alarmgeber.

Danger detector

Device that sends a message to the alarm panel when a certain event occurs (e.g. movement, glass breakage, vibrations).

Alarm panel

The switching panel of the entire alarm system, which processes all information, forwards it and responds as necessary.

Alarm zone

A detector (wireless) or detector group (wired) is monitored via each zone and can be programmed separately.

Perimeter protection

All points of access to the premises are monitored, including front doors, terrace doors, cellar doors, skylights and all windows. Usually magnetic contacts, glass break alarms and wireless window security locks are used. The building’s occupants can still move around freely within the building when the alarm system is armed.

Outdoor siren

Sounder for outdoor use, usually designed as a combination sounder (siren + strobe).

AWAG (telephone dialler)

Automatic dialling and messaging device: Sounder for transmitting voice messages.

AWUG (telephone dialler)

Automatic dialling and transmission device. Sounder for transmitting digital logs (for emergency monitoring stations).



Different users of the alarm system (e.g. owners, tenants) can be assigned separate rights and user codes.

User guidance

Electronically guided help for operating the alarm panel.


Prox Tag

Electronic "key" for quick access to the building without code entry.

Coding of wireless signals

Ensures secure transmission of signals without manipulation or tampering between the alarm panel and its components.



Display field on the alarm panel for operating and configuring the panel.

Double end of line (DEOL)

Wiring version for wired alarm systems; wired zones of the Secvest/Privest also take on this configuration.

Wired alarm system

Alarm system with detectors connected to the alarm panel via wires (good idea for new buildings and large buildings).

Wired detector, wired detectors

Alarm and danger detectors that are connected via wire to the alarm panel.

Wired zone, wired alarm zone

Alarm zone monitored via one or more wired detectors (usually switched in series).

Duplex antenna technology

Combination of two antennas to exclude areas with no wireless reception. A switch (power analysing switch) detects which of the two antennas has the better reception. Duplex antennas facilitate installation.


Individual identification of detectors

Makes it possible to determine exactly which detector has triggered (see also wireless alarm zone).

Intruder alarm system, burglar alarm system

Alarm system that detects an intrusion and triggers an alarm.

shock sensor

This detector identifies vibrations that occur when an attempt to break in is made.

External alarm (alarm type)

Alarm to which all sounders (internal and external) respond when triggered. An alarm receiving centre is also notified of the event.


Remote access/remote configuration

Maintenance/configuration of the alarm panel via home PC from home.

Wireless alarm system

Alarm system with detectors that are connected to the alarm panel wirelessly (quick and easy installation, high flexibility).

Wireless alarm zone, wireless zone

Zone of the wireless alarm panel that is used to identify and monitor every individual wireless detector

Wireless display module (Secvest, FTS 96 E)

Indicates which opening detector (door, window, etc.) is open or closed and notifies if a window is left open; also in stand-alone mode (FTS-96 E without alarm system).

Wireless keypad

For convenient arming/disarming of the alarm panel, e.g. in another room (in the entrance/exit area, etc.); furthermore, the status of the bidirectional wireless keypad of the Secvest can be queried.

Wireless window security lock FTS 96E

Combination of FTS 96 mechanical window security lock and an electronic detector (in conjunction with the Secvest).

Radio remote control

For convenient arming/disarming of the alarm panel, status query, emergency alarm, etc. regardless of the user’s location.

Wireless info module (Secvest)

For mounting in entrance areas or additional rooms: Communicates the most important processes and statuses to the alarm panel via LED display and beep tones.

Wireless detector

Alarm and danger detectors that are connected wirelessly to the alarm panel.

Wireless range

The max. distance between the alarm panel and wireless detector varies depending on the properties of the building.

Wireless key switch

For convenient arming/disarming of the alarm panel without entering a code (using a key).

Wireless universal module (Secvest)

Offers 3 additional functions in combination with the Secvest. Repeater function: Doubling the wireless range. Radio output module: Control of outputs (for light, roller shutters, etc.). Transmitter/receiver module: Outputs and integration of wired detectors possible. Use cases as a "sounder module": "Wireless receiver module", "Sounder transmitter/receiver module" only for wired alarms.


Danger alarm system

Alarm system that triggers an alarm for additional dangers/emergencies as well as break-in.

Protected outdoor area

Area outside of the buildings that is protected from heavy rain (e.g. a covered entrance area or terrace).

Glass breakage detector

These detectors respond to breaking glass. There are passive, active and acoustic glass break alarms.


Interior protection

The indoor area of the premises is protected here, especially areas that an intruder most likely has to enter; motion detectors and light barriers are usually used here.

Indoor siren

Sounder for indoor use, usually a purely acoustic sounder (in addition to outdoor sirens).


Mounting of the alarm panel and components, including start-up.

Internal alarm

Alarm sounds only within the building. The outdoor sirens do not sound.

Intuitive operation

Easy operation of a device using a menu that is logical from the point of view of the user.


Combination signalling device

Combined sounder, e.g. siren (acoustic signal) + strobe (visual signal).

Communication options (Secvest)

For silent alarm: for transmission of voice/text messages or digital protocols PSTN, ISDN (ISDN module), wireless mobile (GSM module) and via IP network (Ethernet module).


See system components


Local alarm (alarm type)

If this alarm is triggered the sounders indoors and outdoors sound (outdoors the acoustic alarm (siren) must stop after 3 minutes in Germany, but the visual alarm (strobe) can remain on).



Security components of ABUS wireless alarm systems that combine robust mechanical security with state-of-the-art wireless alarm technology.

Medical emergency

Personal medical emergency, for which help can be arranged using an alarm.

Modules (Secvest)

see wireless info module, wireless display module, wireless universal module.


Opening detector

A detector that identifies when a window, door, shutter, garage door, etc. is opened.


Perimeter surveillance

Continuous monitoring of large areas of open land around the periphery or the areas used for approaching the property, e.g. using light barriers and motion detectors on the premises and/or surveillance cameras with intelligent motion detection.

Product training

Training on a specific product with the know-how to answer all detailed questions from end customers.


Detailed settings for the alarm panel according to the user’s requirements (e.g. zones/partitions can be defined).


Smoke alarm (fire alarm)

Optical smoke alarm devices save lives, as they respond to smoke particles in the air (usually poisonous gases). Heat detectors/heat difference detectors respond to a maximum temperature (e.g. 65°C) or a rapid increase in temperature.

Relay outputs

Switching outputs, for external consumers (lighting control, electric shutters, other sounders, etc.)


Tampering, tampering protection, sabotage

To ensure that the alarm panel and components cannot be tampered with when disarmed, each component is monitored for tampering. Opening a detector and disconnecting cables ALWAYS triggers an alarm. The components are usually protected by a cover contact (alarm when detector is opened) and an anti-removal wall contact.

Arming, disarming

Activating/deactivating the alarm panel.

Arm components

Devices that can be used to arm/disarm the alarm panel (e.g. remote control, key switch, control panel).

Security frequency band (433 MHz, 868 MHz)

These frequency ranges are approved by the authorities (RegTP) for the security sector -– signals from wireless earphones, mobile phones, garage door openers, etc. cannot interfere with devices operating in these ranges.

Seismic sensor

See shock sensor.


Sounder that triggers an alarm when it receives a corresponding command from the alarm panel (siren, strobe, etc.).


Alarm panel status: activated ("armed"), deactivated ("disarmed").

Status query

Query sent to the alarm panel about the system status (e.g. by pressing the button on the wireless remote control).

Status light

Status indication by means of light whether the panel is armed/disarmed.

Status feedback

Feedback from the alarm panel to a module (arming device, info module, etc.) about its current status.

Silent alarm (alarm type)

This alarm does not trigger any sounders (indoors and outdoors remains quiet and calm), but a monitoring station is discreetly notified (intruder is not scared off, rather caught in the act, aggressive intruders are not provoked, etc.).



See "Tampering"

Technical damage

For example, water damage or escaped gas (protection against these things is only provided by special danger detectors).


An alarm system can be divided into partitions, each of which functions separately as an individual alarm system.

Each partition (e.g. apartment, workshop) can be operated and configured separately and can contain any number of zones/detectors.

Telephone dialler

Device used to send alarm messages from an alarm panel by telephone line (see AWAG, AWUG). Telephone diallers can be integrated in alarm panels or added as additional components.


Flood alarm

For detecting water damage and flooding, consisting of a basic device and water sensor (the sensor is always mounted at a point where flooding would first start to incur water damage).



Inspection seal from an independent body that ensures the high quality and safety of alarm systems (in Germany the following are relevant: certification as per POS in accordance with accident prevention regulations and VdS loss prevention).


Another term for a line. Describes a closed circuit to which alarm or tamper contacts are connected, which are then connected to the alarm panel.

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