SMC And The National Broadband Network

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The National Broadband Network (nbn™)

The rollout of the nbn™ network will involve new technologies and many existing monitored alarm systems may not be compatible with these at all times.

It is important to contact Security Monitoring Centres before moving to the nbn™ network, to ensure your important monitoring service can continue to be provided without disruption. We will provide advice as to whether your existing monitored alarm system can be directly connected to the nbn™ network, the limitations of doing this and recommend the best solution available to suit your individual needs.

Contact SMC online or call 1300 132 390, read below for further information.

Will my alarm system work properly when connected to the nbn™ network?

Unfortunately there is no simple answer to this question as it depends on a variety of factors, including the nbn™ network technology being deployed in your area, the brand and model of your alarm system and the Retail Service Provider (RSP) you select.

Due to most existing alarm systems being designed to transmit via traditional copper voice-based phone lines, if you elect to direct connect your alarm system to the nbn™ network you will require your RSP to provide an nbn™ service that includes a UNI-V (Voice) connection. A UNI-V connection is designed to support legacy equipment like alarm systems, fax machines, EFTPOS terminals, fire and lift alarms.

However UNI-V connections are not available in all nbn™ network areas due to the technology deployed and some RSP’s do not offer this type of connection. It is also important to understand the limitations of connecting your alarm system to the nbn™ network as there is an increased potential for alarm signals not to be transmitted correctly and a possibility some older alarm systems may not be compatible with the nbn™ network at all.

Will my alarm system still be able to communicate during a power outage when connected to the nbn™ network?

Unlike traditional copper voice-based phone lines, the nbn™ network equipment that is installed in your premises relies on a local power supply to operate. Therefore if power is lost to your premises your nbn™ connected equipment and subsequently your alarm system will not be able to communicate during the period of the power outage.

In some cases your RSP may be able to provide you with a local back-up battery for your nbn™ network equipment, however this will not provide the minimum 16 hours of battery back-up time required of an Australian Standard AS2201.1 monitored alarm system.
If you have a Fibre to the Node (FTTN), Fibre To The Building (FTTB) or Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC) nbn™ network topology in your local area then the network itself is unlikely to provide 100% battery backup during a power outage.


To ensure your monitored alarm system continues to operate reliably and during power outages, SMC recommends its customers transition to a Wireless monitoring solution rather than connecting directly to the nbn™ network.

Any one of the many Wireless solutions currently available through SMC will provide an independent wireless communications path that is not reliant the nbn™ network and will make your transition to the nbn™ as easy and seamless as possible and in many cases will save you money.


Wireless monitoring is a complete end-to-end security alarm transmission system that utilises one or more mobile data networks, to provide a secure communication path between the monitored alarm system at your premises and the monitoring centre.

Some of the advantages of a Wireless monitoring solution are below;

  • Your monitored alarm system will be able to communicate during power outages.
  • Dual redundancy options available. For example systems can communicate on both the Telstra and Optus networks.
  • Eliminates phone call charges that occur each time the alarm systems dials the monitoring centre, one flat fee includes both communication charges and monitoring services.
  • Eliminates the requirement for an nbn™ UNI-V connection, back-up battery unit which provides you the freedom to choose any RSP even those not offering a nbn™ UNI-V service.

What happens to my existing phone line after the nbn™ network becomes available?

When the nbn™ network is made available at your location, an 18 month transition period commences for you to select your nbn™ services from one of the many RSP’s operating in your region. At the end of the transition period, there is a regulatory obligation to disconnect the traditional copper voice-based phone line from your premises.

This means you will need to transition your monitored alarm system during the 18 month transition period to enable it to continue to be monitored. SMC recommends its customers commence transitioning as soon as possible when you become aware the nbn™ network will be available in your area to eliminate any disruptions to your monitoring service.

I’m already connected to the National Broadband Network (nbn™) and my alarm system seems fine.

Some RSP’s may have advised you that your alarm system will be unaffected by this change and they will simply connect your alarm system to a UNI-V port on nbn™ network. You need to be aware your alarm system may not operate correctly during a power outage and there is no guarantee that your alarm system will be able to reliably communicate using this method at all times. SMC recommends a service call to fully test your alarm system and to ensure it has been connected correctly using a Mode 3 connection which enables it to communicate even when other devices at the premises are off hook.

To find out more information about the nbn™ network compatibility click here