Homes and businesses with no security measures are five times more likely to be burgled than properties that do have simple security measures in place, police have claimed.
Sgt O’Neill from Newtownabbey PSNI’s Local Policing Team has outlined a number of simple steps which should help keep people and their property safe:
• Before leaving your property or before going to bed at night; ensure that your windows and doors are securely locked.
• Ensure that all valuables (including car keys) are kept out of sight and not in close proximity to your letterbox.
• Ensure that gates, sheds and garages are securely locked.
• Keep high value items (jewellery, cash) in a properly secured safe.
• When you are out, the use of lighting with timer switches is a great way to give the illusion that someone is home. If you are leaving your home overnight advise trustworthy neighbours.
• Before answering your door, check the identity of the caller via a window. If the caller claims to be from a utility company (i.e. water, gas, electric) ask the caller for ID. If you are still not convinced, freephone Quick Check on 08000 132290.
• Don’t want cold callers? – Your local policing team or Trading Standards can provide you with free ‘No Cold Calling’ stickers for your windows or doors.
• Burglar alarms and motion sensitive lighting act as great deterrents.
• Use deadlocks or chain locks to make your doors more secure.
For anyone who is concerned about the security of an elderly or vulnerable neighbour, Local Policing Teams and Crime Prevention Officers can offer free and impartial advice on the best ways to help them secure their property. Call 101 for more information.