Testing security system is only way to confirm protection

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A home security system can give you peace of mind but only if it's actually working properly. Consumers should test their system at least every month. That's the only way you'll know if your security equipment is connected to the central monitoring station. If it isn't, you're paying for protection you're not getting.

Tiny Phillips wanted to move a noisy home security keypad out of her grandson's room. She says the same rep that sold her the ADT system relocated the pad and was supposed to re-established her connection.

"I stood there while he made calls to what I thought were ADT and talked to them on the phone and then everything was fine," Phillips said.

For six months, Phillips says she made her ADT payments and the keypad worked as normal, but when it started to malfunction, she called ADT and discovered her monitoring was disconnected and it had been so since the keypad was moved.

"All that time, you think you're protected, and when you leave your home, you think your home is protected, and you find out that's not true," Phillips said.

Phillips says ADT pointed out that it was her responsibility to test her system to uncover problems like this, but she thinks there's blame on both sides.

"Somewhere there should have been a double check, she's paying money, her system's not connected, but apparently there is not a double check," Phillips said.

She canceled on the spot. Phillips says ADT refused to refund what she paid while she wasn't connected and charged her a $327 termination fee that's now in collections. She knows what she should have done.

"Check your system to make sure it's connected to whatever company you're using the service of," Phillips said.

ADT looked into this matter for CBS 5 News. They apologized for any inconvenience to Phillips, wiped out the early termination fee, removed the account from collections, and gave Phillips one year of free monitoring for restoring her ADT service. Our thanks to ADT for a more than fair resolution to this matter.

Remember, testing your security system is the only real way to make sure you're getting the protection you're paying for.

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