There were almost 6 million burglaries, personal assaults and other such offenses reported to authorities in recent years - with two-thirds of those being residential break-ins. That’s one every 10 seconds!
The good news is that these crimes can be prevented. You can deter a thief by making his job not only difficult, but also time consuming. Burglars usually will spend no longer than 60 seconds trying to break into a home. The longer it takes the burglar to break-in, the better the chances are that they could be caught. In most instances, the intruder will move to an easier target.
- Sixty-five percent of all burglaries involved forcible entry. Thirty-five per cent of all burglaries are committed without force - through unlocked doors or windows!
- Don’t let yourself become a victim of a robbery or an attack on your person - help yourself to a more secure future.
- Purchase an alarm system from a reputable alarm dealer.
- Have your alarm system monitored by a reputable Central Monitoring Station.
- Try not to use an ATM Machine late at night. At the very least, use one that is in a well-lit area.
- Make certain that any other ATM customer in line cannot see the PIN number you enter.
- Display “security stickers” prominently around your entire premises.
- When you have an alarm system installed, don’t forget other important functions that should be included in the coverage, such as: fire, hold-up /duress, gas leak, high water, low temperature, medical alert, etc.
- Women living alone should have their name listed in the telephone directory with their first initial and last name only.
- Don’t leave your car in an unattended parking lot, if you can help it. Try to park in a well-lit area of the lot. Be certain to remove your keys, lock all doors of the car, and roll up all windows.
- If you are alone, or if it is dark, take extra care and be aware of your surroundings and the people around you.
- Invest in solid, dependable doors.
- Do not keep large amounts of cash or expensive jewelry around the house. Consider having a safe installed or move your valuables to a safety deposit box at your local bank.
- Keep all volatile or explosive chemicals and other hazardous materials stored safely off-site.
- Landscape for security. Don’t allow shrubbery to grow up around the building, which could conceal windows. Remember the 3-foot / 6-foot rule - trim tree branches up to 6 feet off the ground and trim shrubs down to 3 feet.
- Do not put valuables where they can be seen from any window - especially small, portable items.
- Always keep the outside of the building well lit in the evening.
- Don’t leave the overhead garage door(s) open when you are inside the main building, or when you have left the premises.
- Install substantial dead-bolt locks and security door chains on all perimeter doors.
- Don’t forget to use an adequate locking mechanism on the pedestrian entry door into the garage. This door should be solid - without glass panels!
- Provide instructions to all members of the family, and others who will use the alarm system, as to its proper use and operation.
- If you arrive at the premises and see any evidences of a forcible entry, leave the area immediately and call the police.
- Invest in quality locks for your doors and windows, including sliding glass doors. Place safety bars in the tracks of all sliding glass doors.
- Be sure that all doors and windows are locked and secure when leaving the building.
- Never hide your keys under the front door mat or in the mailbox or in some other non-secure place. If you must leave a key at the premises, buy a “Lock Box.”
- Keep the phone numbers of your alarm dealer, the Central Monitoring Station and the responding authorities on file for quick reference.
- Always engage your alarm system when you leave the premises - even if you are only leaving for a short period of time.
- Be a good citizen and report any suspicious activities in the vicinity to the authorities. This may prevent crime and make your home or office, and your neighbor’s home or office, a safer place.
- Do not keep your customer I.D. security code for the Monitoring Central Station right by the telephone – where unauthorized persons might see it and use it inappropriately.
- Engrave all valuable equipment, stereos, television sets, VCR's, video cameras, etc., with your driver's license number for future identification in the event the item is stolen and recovered.
- Be sure to go through your property - room by room - inside and outside - and list all items. Indicate their value, if possible. A better method is to also take photographs of each item or make a video with commentary. When this project is completed, keep the data off-site, preferably in a safety deposit box at the bank.
- Immediately after you buy a home or business property, always have all the locks re-keyed and change the keypad codes on the alarm system.
- If a stranger comes to your door asking to use the phone, do not let him or her into the building. Offer to make the call for the person yourself from the safety of your premises.
- When walking outside, walk confidently and at a steady pace. Potential attackers usually prey on people who look or appear vulnerable.
- Regularly change the batteries on all wireless, monitored alarm equipment and on all “local” smoke or gas detectors. It is handy to remember this by doing it at the same time you change the clocks - in the Spring and in the Fall of each year!
- Install fire extinguishers in vital areas, such as in the kitchen, home office, garage, utility room, furnace room, etc. Take all units to a professional fire extinguisher company to be inspected and re-certified annually.
- A study conducted by a major U.S. police department indicated that losses against premises without alarm systems totaled $7,400,89.00 … while losses against premises with alarm systems were only $227,054.00!
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