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Wireless machine-to-machine (M2M) networks are becoming a relevant topic in the field of home automation and advanced security systems. A wireless network for indoor intrusion detection is based on several sensors that are deployed over the monitored area for detecting possible risky situations and triggering appropriate actions in response. The network needs to support traffic patterns with different characteristics and quality constraints. Namely, it should provide a periodic low-power monitoring service and, in case of intrusion detection, a real-time alarm propagation mechanism over inherently unreliable wireless links subject to fluctuations of the signal power. Following the guidelines introduced by recent standardization, this paper proposes the design of a wireless network prototype able to satisfy the specifics of the intrusion detection application. A proprietary medium access control is developed based on the low-power SimpliciTI radio stack. Network performance is assessed by experimental measurements using a test-bed operating at 868MHz in an indoor office environment with severe multipath and non line-of-sight propagation conditions.