If the Internet Goes Out, Does My Wireless Security System Still Work?

To keep working during a power outage, wireless home security systems must be able to switch to a cellular connection. This is a common feature in most of our top home security picks, but sometimes it costs extra.

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How security systems communicate

Home security systems communicate with the monitoring center via a landline phone, internet (VoIP, Ethernet, Wi-Fi), or cellular connection. 

Internet connections are prone to outages

If your home security system communicates with a monitoring center via internet, your alarm system would no longer be connected to them should you lose internet connectivity.

Cellular connections tend to be more stable

Cellular connections offer better reliability for connecting your alarm system with a monitoring company. Like a cellular phone, these types of home security systems use specific radio frequencies to maintain communication with cellular transmitters in outage situations.

Cellular connections are unaffected by internet outages. A system with cellular backup keeps all of your alarms up and running if the internet goes out. You may have to pay for a higher-tier monitoring plan to get this perk.

Some areas of the country get poor cellular service. If that's the case where you live, choose a landline- or internet-based security system for best results.

Compare the top home security companies' connections

Brand
Lowest monitoring price
Landline
Internet
Cellular
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Icon Yes  LightPrimary
Icon Yes  LightBack-up
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Icon No  LightNo
Icon Yes  LightPrimary (optional)
Icon No  LightNo
Icon Yes  LightPrimary
Icon Yes  LightBack-up
Icon No  LightNo
Icon No  LightNo
Icon Yes  LightPrimary
Icon No  LightNo
Icon Yes  LightPrimary
Icon Yes  LightBack-up
Icon Yes  LightPrimary (optional)
Icon Yes  LightPrimary (optional)
Icon Yes  LightBack-up
Icon No  LightNo
Icon Yes  LightPrimary
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Icon Yes  LightPrimary
Icon Yes  LightBack-up

*Amazon.com price as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change. Read full disclaimer.

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Cathy Habas
Written by
Cathy Habas
With over seven years of experience as a content writer, Cathy has a knack for untangling complex information. Her natural curiosity and ability to empathize help Cathy offer insightful, friendly advice. She believes in empowering readers who may not feel confident about a purchase, project, or topic. Cathy earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Indiana University Southeast and began her professional writing career immediately after graduation. She has contributed to sites like Safety.com, Reviews.com, Hunker, and Thumbtack. Cathy’s pride and joy is her Appaloosa “Chacos.” She also likes to crochet while watching stand-up comedy specials on Netflix.

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