Winter Burglary Risk Levels Rise in 2020
With the nights getting darker and mornings starting later, it’s a national statistic that shows that the number of burglaries rises during the winter season. In order to tackle these criminal activities and reduce the chance that you are targetted, there are a few measures you can take. As homeowners, it’s vital that you take your home security seriously, ensuring that nothing is left to chance. Statistics show that most burglaries occur by criminals gaining entry through the garden. This is what the Thames Valley police have discovered, taking a look at the most recent burglary reports that they have received.
It’s needless to say that the impact of having your house burgled is immense. Having possessions taken by force from your home can be both financially and mentally crippling. Burglary victims are left traumatised and at a state of unease. Regardless of the known risks that are out there, it’s common for most of us to delay taking action until a close friend or yourself has been subjected to such an attack. Having the time or money to buy security measures can also be a reason, however, there are affordable options out there that can work well.
Police Sergeant Darren Walsh, part of the Amersham Neighbourhood Policing team has come up with a list of things you can action immediately to help protect yourself from being burgled. Like with anything, none of these guarantees safety, however, they act as good deterrents. Reading this list is a great time to take a look at your own home security and see what you’re missing out on:
1 – Make it appear that someone is at home:
- Leave a light and the radio on when the nights draw in.
- Use a fake TV light device.
- Use timer switches.
- Do you have an internet assistant e.g. Alexa? Some have a new security App so try it out.
- Make sure your doors and windows are properly closed and have British Standard locks.
2 – Improve your security
- Camera Doorbell as most burglars will knock first. This is about the cheapest way to get CCTV.
- Install an SSAIB or NSI alarm or at least have a fake box installed.
- Make use of motion sensors inside your house so you can see if something is wrong whilst you are away from the address. There are smart systems that connect through the internet alerting your phone when a sensor has been triggered.
- Install CCTV or consider CCTV signs depending on your budget.
- Improve your locks and get window film to stop windows easily being smashed.
- Advertise your property is security marked. Use SMARTWATER /Selecta DNA window stickers.
3 – Do not display your wealth
- Performance cars will often be targeted if you have a top end car lock it in the garage.
- Do not have your keys on display on the sideboard. Keys can be fished through letterboxes.
- Get a letterbox guard or cage.
- Just who are you updating with the Facebook Posts when you are on holiday.
- Asian gold is being targeted. Think about what could identify your house as a place likely to have such gold.
- Avoid keeping large amounts of cash at home.
4 – Consider the garden as a vulnerability
- Consider a ‘beware of the dog’ sign or dog bowl will make the burglar think twice.
- Padlock the gate and close the front gates.
- Secure your fences. Trellis is a great obstacle for burglars due to it most likely collapsing, consider cheap spikey fence options like prickly strip (make sure you put the signs up) This is a real cheap option and can result in us getting suspects DNA.
- Plant prickly plants at tactical places around the garden boundary.
- Burglars can use large ornaments or rocks or garden tools to break in, so look to remove opportunities and make sure you securely lock away any tools after use.
5 – Look out for your neighbours
- Join your local neighbourhood watch.
- Set up a no doorstep selling zone. Eliminate a reason for burglars to knock on your door.
- Speak to your neighbours and tell them if workmen are coming or you are going away.
- Be a good neighbour and conduct checks if your neighbours are going away.
- And finally, if you see something suspicious call it into the police. You know your area best!
Taken from experience:
We, as a locksmith service provider have also seen a rise in such burglaries as there are opportunists everywhere. We have a case study showing a recent job of ours which will hopefully highlight the importance of securing your locks!
“Called by a customer who was at hone with their back door open with the keys in the back of the lock. She saw a man carrying leaflets come up the path (the house backs onto another street) As she watched, he took the key out of the door and hurried back out of the garden – she realised he would be returning later to commit a burglary and called me to change the lock.
If she hadn’t observed what had happened she might not have realised that her property was vulnerable and as a result lost possessions as well as her keys.
It was a simple job to change the euro cylinders to her UPVC doors. This customer chose to also upgrade her locks to anti-snap, anti-bump, anti-pick, anti-drill insurance approved high-security cylinders in addition to making a mental note to increase her general security awareness ie to stop leaving the key in an unlocked door, and to secure the gate to protect the garden and back of the house.”
We also have a page full of case studies with different scenarios we’ve worked with giving you a wider range of examples of jobs we’ve carried out. Visit our case studies page to find out more about the previous jobs we’ve done.