October is National Home Security Month (NHSM), and with statistics showing a 26% increase in burglaries between Halloween and Bonfire Night, we’ve collated some useful advice to help keep you, your home and your belongings, safe and sound.
If you don’t want to be disturbed this Halloween, display a ‘No Trick Or Treat’ sign on your front door. These are available from most local police constabularies and are an effective way to stop people coming to your door.
Even if you readily welcome trick-or-treaters, it’s important to make sure you keep safe when you open the door to strangers. To do this, you can look through a ‘spy hole’ or a digital door viewer to see who’s on the other side of the door, and always keep a door chain engaged if you feel threatened by the size of the group on the other side.
Another effective way of securing your home against sinister tricksters is to invest in a letterplate restrictor. It’s becoming more and more common for thieves to ‘fish’ out keys through a letterplate to gain access to a property or vehicle. This type of crime is better known as ‘key fishing’ and is a growing threat.
With a restrictor, letterplates can be adjusted from full closure to part restriction or full opening, depending whether you’re at home or away. They are also really useful to prevent vandalism as they stop nasty ‘tricks’, fireworks, or unsolicited door drops being pushed through your front door.
Statistically, Bonfire Night is the worst night of the year for break-ins, with a 28% increase in burglary claims compared with the rest of the year. The irresistible combination of dark nights, noise and distractions presents the perfect opportunity for criminals to strike.
People are often out and about at firework displays or bonfires parties, so criminals are able to work under the cover of darkness – without people being suspicious of noises, such as smashing glass.
To enjoy all Bonfire Night has to offer, make sure all your windows and doors are locked and secured before leaving the house, and set your home alarm. Research shows that 60% of burglaries carried out on homes fitted with a burglar alarm are unsuccessful, so it’s worth investing in one if you haven’t already, as even the siren box on the side of your property is enough to deter a would-be criminal.
The NHSM Facebook and Twitter channels will be supplying daily tips for keeping your home and your outdoors safe and secure during the dark nights. For more information visit www.homesecuritymonth.com, or search for ‘National Home Security Month’ on Facebook and Twitter.