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Guard Tour System

Guard Tour System

The Technology

A rugged reader is the core of any security guard tour system. Guard Tour system is build around The PIPE, a rugged hand-held device the size and shape of a small flashlight. The heart of the Guard Tour System, The PIPE records data contained in tamper- and weather-resistant touch memory buttons. These buttons are smaller in diameter than a dime and roughly 3 times as thick. Each button contains a microchip and a unique ID number.

Buttons can represent locations, incidents or officers — as determined by the guard tour software. When an officer touches The PIPE to a button, The PIPE beeps and flashes its LED, confirming that the button's ID has been successfully recorded. The system cannot be circumvented or defeated.

Performing a Tour

At the start of a shift or before beginning a patrol, an officer uses The PIPE to read his or her unique officer button. This ensures that all subsequent tour activity is associated with that officer. The officer is now ready to visit each of the location buttons in the route, touching The PIPE to each button to confirm the visit.

As the officer moves from location button to location button, touching each with The PIPE, the reader records the time and the location button ID.

Buttons are physically mounted at these locations — on walls, floors, in closets, inside or outside of a facility, or adjacent to fire extinguishers to facilitate periodic extinguisher checks. Various types of mounting hardware can be used depending on the location, with more secure hardware designed for areas where vandalism is a possibility.

Recording Incidents and Observations

Officer and location buttons confirm the officer's identity and where the officer visited. Incident buttons provide additional information. Depending on the requirements and procedures set by the security manager, the officer may read one or more incident buttons at a location to record security or safety conditions.

The nature of incidents depends on the setting. In a corporate environment, incidents might include broken windows, lights out, running water, or fire extinguisher charge status. Incident buttons are held in a specially designed wallet containing up to 12 incident buttons, each one corresponding to a specific event or observation.

When an officer observes an incident for which there is a corresponding button, he simply uses The PIPE to read the relevant button to record the event(s).

Data Transfer

When a tour is completed (or anytime, since The PIPE can hold several days or weeks of information, depending upon use) the officer or supervisor downloads the data by placing The PIPE into a downloader, which automatically transfers the data to a PC. Downloader versions are available for direct connection to a PC, or for transfer via LAN, WAN, or the Internet.

Each PIPE holds 4883 button reads and can be fully downloaded in less than a minute. Once the data has been successfully transferred, all button reads stored in The PIPE are cleared and it is ready to be used for a new tour.


Guard tour software processes the information gathered by The PIPE and produces a variety of reports. These typically include summary reports or detail reports filtered by tour, by a specific location or set of locations, or by date range. Tour reports and rule reports show whether all locations were visited as required. Download reports show each button read, in sequence.

Exception reports and innovative display applications like Rounds Tracker simplify the manager's job by quickly pointing to problems, permitting management by exception with less time and effort.