13 Home security tips right from the burglar’s mouth

Crime figures for theft and burglary dipped during the first lockdown. People were at home more, fewer people were venturing out (criminals included) and suspicious activity was perhaps more noticeable. When the first lockdown lifted last July 2020 burglaries spiked by 25%* compared to May of that year, highlighting how important it is to secure your home when you’re out and about.

As many more of us venture beyond our own postcodes, we ask a reformed burglar for some insight into breaking and entering. How did he typically get in? And what room did he make a beeline for first? Armed with this information, here are our tips for outsmarting crime so you can go to work, go to sleep or go on a mini-break again feeling reassured your home security is all in hand.

We asked: What was your main point of entry when breaking into a house?

This video is a good reminder to consider every possible entry-point when placing motion sensors. It’s something you should keep in mind when you design your own alarm system and if you have professional alarm installation they’ll be able to help you secure the key entrance points. .

 

Our burglar’s view is backed up by data from the Office for National Statistics showing the method of entry in 76% of cases is the door, most likely by forcing the lock/breaking or cutting a panel of the door. Or, 20% of the time by forcing a window lock/breaking or cutting glass or simply pushing the window open.

It’s good to know Boundary will tell you if a window (with a window contact sensor) is open before you can arm the alarm. A handy prompt not to leave any open. And if you do have any upstairs bathroom windows accessible from a flat roof like a garage, think about putting motion sensors in any adjoining walkways or hallways as well as bedrooms so if an intruder breaks in they’ll trip both sensors in those areas, triggering your alarm.

We asked: Which room do burglars target first in a break-in?

You’ve heard it right from Luke’s mouth. It’s the bedroom that burglars make a beeline for. This is something you need to keep in mind when you’re securing your home and hiding any valuables. You need to make sure your sensors are in the right place, your documents are hidden and anything precious isn’t stored in the obvious places when you’re away.

7 quick and easy home security tips from an ex-burglar

  1. Don’t leave house keys in the door at night. Or insight. Make getting in and out as hard as possible.
  2. Make sure all locks are chain or mortice. Snibs can be popped open with a fish slice.
  3. Avoid a keysafe by the front door. They’re very easy to break into. Pro-tip. Hide your key safe behind a fake bird box.
  4. Fasten a deadlock to windows and doors. Noisier to break into and way more hassle.
  5. Find unusual places to hide your valuables – somewhere other than the bedroom. Every second intruders are in your property is a second they risk being caught.
  6. Point of entry in 59% of burglaries is the front, 33% back, and 7% side.* Consider adding noisy gravel or additional lighting near your front door.
  7. Even if your bike is in the garage – lock it. More hassle for thieves to remove.

Timing of domestic burglary 

70% during the week

30% weekend

Daylight  38%   Dark  58%

Source: ONS Annual data from the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) 2020

 

We asked: What happens when you’re disturbed during a burglary, are burglar alarms a deterrent?

We asked Luke, our reformed burglar, what he’d do if an alarm went off and he was disturbed. The good news is the answer was he’d be out the door quick smart.

So, the key is to offer a true deterrent, in case the worst happens and they actually break in. What are your options?

Get your other smart devices in on the act for the ultimate disruption

. This means you don’t just need to rely on your security system either. With a smart security system you can tap into your whole smart home device network. Here are some ways you can get your other smart devices in on the act to really ramp up that reassuring feeling that you have everything covered.

In less than 5 minutes you can integrate Boundary with Amazon AlexaGoogle Home and 600+ other devices like smart lights using the If This Then That (IFTTT) app. Here are some top ways to get smart devices working in your favour.

  1. Link Boundary to Philips Hue lightbulbs or smart plugs and have the lights turn on at dusk, at certain times in the night or start flashing if there’s an intruder.
  2. Link Boundary to Philips Hue lightbulbs or smart plugs and have the lights turn on at dusk, at certain times in the night or start flashing if there’s an intruder.

6 Home security tips from the experts

You’ve heard everything you need from the ex-burglar. Now it’s time for a few tips from us. We’ve got years of experience in protecting homes, so we know a thing or two about home security.

    1. Install a home security system. Of course we’re going to say this, but it’s one of your best options for protecting your home. With a smart security system you’ll get alerts, turn on the lights, set off an alarm or even have access to police response.
    2. Make sure you set your alarm. Having a system isn’t enough, you need to make sure you’re actually setting it.
    3. Change your locks. Not only can the right locks reduce your home insurance, but a robust lock can secure the most vulnerable entry points.
    4. Hide your valuables. And do exactly what our ex-burglar says, do it somewhere that’s properly unexpected.
    5. Install smart lighting. You can synch your smart lights up with your smart alarm system, so they turn on when your alarm goes off.
    6. Don’t make it obvious when your house is empty. You don’t want to advertise you’re away.Cancel your milk deliveries if you’re going away, set up some automatic lighting. Just make sure it looks lived in!

Smart technology now makes it easier than ever to outsmart crime, so stick a date in your diary to check your home security and we can help make every trip out of your home worry free. . 

*Source: Freedom of Information request conducted to 17 police constabularies across England and Wales.