Thu 14 December 2017

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Burglary

Security Advice

Burglars are lazy, looking for the easiest opportunities with the least risk. 

Homes with no security measures in place are 5 times more likely to be burgled than those with simple security measures.

75% of burglaries are preventable.

Good window locks, strong deadlocks on doors and a secure side gate can make a big difference, together with lighting once night approaches.

Basic dosdon’ts and why

Lock doors and windows every time you leave the house and double-lock UPVC doors (lift handle and turn the key).  Remember accessibledoors and window when you’re in the garden. A third of burglaries have NO forced entry.
Hide all keys, including car keys, out of sight and away from the letterboxBeing able to hook keys though the letterbox makes access to your house and stealing cars on the drive too easy.
Don’t leave valuable items on view from ground floor windows.
Lock side gates to prevent access to the rear of the property

Two thirds of burglaries gain entryfrom the rear.

Install good outside lightingA burglar doesn’t want to be seen.
Leave a radio and lights on a timerMost opportunist burglars would not risk entering a house they thought to be occupied.
Keep fences around your garden in good condition, consider trellis along the top. Easy access invites the opportunist burglar.
Secure bikes at home by locking them to an immoveable object inside a locked shed or garage – use a Sold Secure Padlock to secure them. Bikes are one of the most targeted items.
Keep ladders and tools stored away; don't leave them outsidebut if you have to, make sure they are secured to an immovable object. These can be used to break into your home.
Improve natural surveillance at the front of your property i.e. trim high hedgesDon’t provide the opportunity to break in unseen.

Additional deterrents & safeguards

Mark your property with postcode and house number or very simply use forensic DNA that is unique to you (NHW recommends SelectaDNA) which automatically registers all marked items,and/or register your property for free with Immobilise.

Store any high value items (i.e. jewellery, passports) in a properly secured safe or bank vault.

Consider installing burglar alarm.

Consider joining or forming a Neighbourhood Watch scheme.

Extra security for doors and windows

In most burglaries, the break-in occursthrough front or back doors, either by forcing the lock or kicking it in. So make sure your doors are strong and secure.  Minimum standard of security for doors and windows should be PAS: 24.

Glass panels in doors are particularly vulnerable. Consider replacing it with laminated glass, which is stronger, or buying a film in a DIY store that can be stuck over the glass to make it harder to break.

Home security and DIY shops sell inexpensive, key-operated locks to fit most kinds of windows. Fit window locks with keys to all downstairs windows and those upstairs that are easy to reach.  Never leave the keys in the locks.

Consider fitting an internal letter plate over the letter box opening to help prevent fishing,

Extra considerations when going away 

Make your home look like someone is living in it, visibly unoccupied homes aremore of a target:

Use automatic timer-switches to turn your lights and radios on/off.

      Ask a trusted neighbour to:

keep an eye on your house
collect your post
open and close curtains 
put out and collect bins
park on your drive.

Cancel any newspaper or milk deliveries.

Consider using the Royal Mail's 'Keepsafe' service - they keep your mail for up to 2 months while you're away. Mail sitting on your doorstep or visibly piling up behind the door is a sure sign that you’re away.

Avoid discussing holiday plans or posting holiday photos on public social networking sites. Burglars could use this information to their advantage.