Patrick Dealtry writes about recent changes which will affect the way in which Lone Worker services should be delivered to achieve a Level 1 Police Response

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Patrick Dealtry writes about recent changes which will affect the way in which Lone Worker services should be delivered to achieve a Level 1 Police Response.

Changes are to 1) the Association of Chief Police Officers, (ACPO), Security Systems Policy and 2) British Standard 8484 for Lone Workers.

These changes enable Lone Worker companies operating in the top end of the market to request a Level 1 (Immediate/Urgent), police response by complying with the ACPO Security Systems Policy for Lone Workers, revised and re-issued on 27th July 2011.

An outline of the main changes is as follows.

ACPO policy

Appendix V of the Policy applies to Lone Worker alarms and requires all of the following to be accredited to BS8484 if they want a Level 1 police response;

  • Companies supplying Lone Worker services (Part 4)

  • Lone Worker devices (Part 5)

  • ARCs (Alarm Receiving Centres) receiving Lone Worker alarms (Part 6)

Accreditation enables ARCs to apply to each police force for a URN (Unique Reference Number), which gives them direct access to police control rooms.

In addition, the policy states, Lone Worker Suppliers shall;

  • Meet the Lone Worker supplier company requirements laid down in BS 8484 Part 4

  • Meet the requirements as laid down in Appendix S of the Policy, sub clause III, (except sub clause ‘I’)

  • The supplier (and the ARC) shall be certified by a United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) accredited certification body in accordance the provisions of the ACPO requirements for lone worker systems. This effectively means accreditation by NSI or SSAIB

ACPO have given Lone Worker Suppliers 12 months to gain NSI or SSAIB accreditation.

Suppliers of Lone Worker services, including ARCs, which are not accredited to this standard, and therefore do not meet the requirements of the ACPO Policy, are relegated to using the 999 system.


Changes to the standard concern;

  • Security and handling of Data and Lone Worker personal details

    • A documented data handling policy, which should be provided to customers

    • Applies to all staff; directly employed or sub-contract

    • Requires security screening to BS7858 of individuals with access to such data

    • Data is to be held either in a BS5979 Cat 2 ARC or in a data centre accredited to ISO27001

  • Supplier management arrangements;

    • should possess a clearly documented business operating manual including supporting procedures and work instructions for the provision of lone worker device services

    • The supplier should have a clearly defined and documented training policy for its staff

  • A functional change states; acceptance of alarm sources may include environmental (e.g. extremes of heat/cold) or other sensors (e.g. medical such as heart monitors)

The revised standard is expected to be available in September 2011.

© The Lone Working Group Ltd. 9th August 2011

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