Today we offer a guest home security blog by the Security Sensei himself.
A look at his Twitter feed and you can't help but be inspired by his passion to educate about everyday things you and I can do to be safer. When offered the opportunity to share an article, I instantly remembered an article describing how criminals evaluate the risk involved in burglarizing your home. I hope you find the information as valuable as I did!
Risk Versus Reward
That’s how burglars determine if your home will be their next target. The risk is simply being caught and sent to jail. The reward is whatever benefit the criminal receives by breaking into your home without being caught—jewelry, cash, electronic equipment, and other valuables. Harming you or one of your family members may also give him some form of sick satisfaction.
Homes that are targeted by criminals are those that equate to fast money. The valuables that burglars steal from homes can be exchanged for money, drugs or simply used to whatever benefit they choose. Most criminals just want to get in and out as quickly as possible, without being seen or confronted. However, there are criminals that will become violent or initiate a physical confrontation, even rape and in some cases murder.
Criminals that commit burglary are typically males between the ages of 16 to 21 years old. Studies show that many of these criminals live near their targets and are familiar with the community. Some criminals may actually live within the apartment complex or have a friend or family member who is a resident within the community. Knowing the ins and outs of a particular neighborhood and the people who reside within the neighborhood is of great benefit to a burglar—the more information they possess, the lesser the risk of being caught.
The risk versus reward concept should be the crux of your home’s security plan. Although thieves are looking for something of value from your home, they are also looking for homes that are easy targets. To diminish the likelihood of becoming a target you must implement a security plan. With the proper security measures in place, you significantly decrease the risk of a potential intruder targeting your dwelling.
One of the easiest ways to increase the risk to potential intruders is implementing visible layers of security. The more visible they are, the more likely criminals will be deterred from viewing your home as an easy target.
The Security Onion: The More Layers The Better
Layer 1 – The Perimeter
Because burglars usually choose their targets by scoping out the property first, it’s important to have a layer of security around the perimeter of your residence. Such security measures will act as an initial deterrent for would-be intruders. So be sure to do the following:
- Prominently display alarm company signage, Neighborhood Watch, and/or other crime prevention program signs around your residence.
- Install adequate LED lighting around your doorways, exterior hallways, stairwells and sidewalks, including lights with motion sensors.
- Look for areas around your residence in which perpetrators can hide. Cut back bushes and other landscaping and increase lighting to eliminate dark, shadowy areas.
Layer 2 – Make it Appear Someone’s Home
Many burglars want to get in and out of a home without being seen. So breaking into a home that is not occupied is what burglars prefer. By installing security devices that help give the impression that someone is home even when you’re not, you can further decrease the chance of your home becoming a target. Consider the following:
- Leave a radio or TV on whenever you leave your home.
- Install a couple of light timers inside your residence.
- You can also use timers to turn on a radio or television while you’re away.
Layer 3 – Stop Intruders in Their Tracks
Some criminals are bolder than others. Although some will be discouraged by the above deterrents, others may not. So having security measures in place that make it extremely difficult for an intruder to break into your home is crucial. The following security measures and devices are effective ways to stop an intruder:
- Peepholes with wide-angle lenses that are within viewing level.
- Doors constructed of solid wood or metal and use only door hinges that are reinforced with 2- to 3-inch steel screws.
- Insert solid wooden closet dowels or metal rods in between the tracks of all horizontally sliding windows and patio doors.
- Windows that are reinforced with glass protection film. These highly effective security window films make breaking the glass much more difficult.
- Obscenely loud alarm systems that contain glass break sensors, motion detectors, back-up cellular dialer, wireless panic buttons, and external strobe lights.
- Install quality dead bolts and security door braces that have the ability to withstand up to 1800 lbs of pressure. Both will make it extremely difficult for an intruder to kick down your door.
Although a burglar may eventually produce enough force to smash through a door or window, with the above security devices in place, it would require a significant amount of attention-getting noise and effort. This is the last thing most burglars’ desire, as the more effort and noise required to break into a home the higher the risk of being seen or caught.
Protecting your home from burglary is all about the layers. Because burglars determine their targets through risk vs. reward scenarios, the more security measures you put in place to increase the risk and lessen the reward for would-be intruders, the less likely your home will be viewed as an easy target.
A huge thank you to Jordan for sharing this information with us. Countless agencies and corporations such as NASDAQ, the US Military, and law enforcement entrust Mr. Frankel with their security and safety and I am sure you can see why. For another great read, check out his article on selecting the right home security system. If you don't yet have a security system, schedule a FREE home security review by calling us at 1-800-310-9490 or click below and we call you.