Keep Burglars Out of Your Property
The Met Police have issued some information on how to prevent burglars from breaking into your home.
Burglars will use a variety of ways to avoid being noticed. They don’t want to be seen or heard by a neighbour, or passers-by.
Distraction burglars will pretend to be someone they are not. It’s important you are aware of the common methods they will use to get you to let them into your property.
Here’s some useful advice, firstly on helping to keep burglars out by giving them no hiding place and, secondly, how to prevent a distraction burglary.
Keep Your Property Visible
You might think it best to make a property less visible from the street and keep it hidden from prying eyes behind overgrown bushes, trees, high fences or walls. In reality, all that this serves to do is make it easier for a burglar to get close to a home unnoticed. It provides somewhere to hide while carrying out a burglary or theft from the property.
Other ways to make it difficult for burglars
By using well-defined boundaries as a basis, CCTV can be a valuable tool. However, it doesn’t prevent a crime from being committed and does have limitations. CCTV linked to a smartphone will alert you to someone crossing your boundary. Most importantly, CCTV is not a substitute for good quality, physical security, such as secure doors and windows.
Some cameras work by day and by night and record when they detect movement and some can be remotely viewed from a smartphone. You should position cameras where they are best able to obtain good-quality facial images.
There is legislation for home CCTV use, so always seek advice from an accredited installer. First, ensure your system complies with the law and certainly install signage, warning that CCTV is in use.
Consider an accredited home alarm installation with audible alarm boxes mounted high at the front and rear of your home. Two visible audible alarm boxes are better than one. Mount them at the front and rear of your home, high up to resist tampering.
Typically, there are 3 types of burglar alarms, varying in capability and cost:
Bells Only – Once activated, this type of alarm will sound very loudly via the outside siren, to scare off an intruder and alert neighbours; they are reliant on someone such as a neighbour checking the house.
Bells + App facility – As above, but also the homeowner can set and unset the alarm via an App on their phone and receive notifications if the system is activated.
Monitored (with or without Police response) – Once triggered, the monitoring centre will contact key holders to check it isn’t a false alarm. If there were 2 activations then the monitoring centre calls the Police to attend the site.
The police will immediately respond to a burglar alarm when instructed by the monitoring centre, usually within 7-12 minutes. They are less likely to respond to an unmonitored alarm when called by a neighbour.
If you carry out an extension to your home you must remember to extend your burglar alarm coverage as well.
External lighting: Security lighting is a good deterrent and is recommended at door entry points. A clear, low, white light which activates from dusk to dawn is ideal for lighting a yard and garden and allows any intruders to be clearly seen.
Check to make sure that trees and plants do not obscure your lighting. It’s recommended that you regularly cut vegetation back. Also, take care to position these lights so that light pollution does not annoy your neighbours.
Internal lighting: Use an automatic plug-in time switch to operate a lamp or light at pre-set times when you are away. Energy-saving LED bulbs are best as they do not use as much electricity, last longer than conventional bulbs, and do not generate heat, thus reducing fire risk.
In blocks of flats, automatic low-energy lights that detect movement are recommended for corridors, stairwells and communal areas, such as car parks and cycle stores.
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