10 Huge Home Security Mistakes
There are some mistakes you don’t get to avoid the second time around because you’re dead because of them. This applies to home security errors.
#1. Unlocked doors. It takes two seconds to lock a door. This should be a habit, whether you’ve just arrived home at midnight or are stepping back into your house at 2:00 in the afternoon after watering the flowers.
A burglar will commonly ring a bell, then jiggle the doorknob if there’s no answer. If the door opens, he’ll waltz right in and ransack…whether you answer the door or not. This same principle applies to keeping windows locked, even on a 90 degree day, when you’re not home. When you’re home, try to keep only second-story windows open if you don’t have A/C.
#2. Disabled alarm. Don’t assume that home intrusions occur only when the occupants are gone. An intruder high on crack doesn’t care if you’re home or not. Keep the alarm on even when you’re home, and disable it when you must momentarily step outside, but turn it back on when you return.
#3. Being cheap. Don’t use cheap locks. You’ll get what you pay for. Spend the money, the difference between a $20 lock and a $60 lock is dramatic.
#4. Ladder in yard. Wow, what a great way to make a burglar’s (or rapist’s) job easier. When you’re done, put the ladder away. Don’t say, “I’ll do it later.”
#5. Hidden keys. Come on, even the world’s dumbest criminals know to look under a plastic-looking rock and the welcome mat, check the flower pot, under the dog bowl, etc. Invest in a keyless lock.
#6. Valuables on display. Be careful where you decide to put valuable items as far as how well they can be seen through your window. If choices are limited, keep your shades down, at least when it begins getting dark.
#7. Unlocked garage. Don’t just keep the garage closed; keep it locked.
#8. Dark spaces. A dark house and dark yard tell burglars you’re not home. Another clue you’re gone—and not coming back in an hour— use timed interior and exterior lighting. Put a TV on and a radio to give your home a lived in look.
#9 Unattended growth and deliveries. An accumulation of newspapers and mail lets everyone know you aren’t home. Put your deliveries on vacation hold and stop your mail. Have your lawn mowed and even have someone park their car in and out of your driveway.
#10. Trash treasure. No, not finding something valuable in your trash, but your trash advertising you have valuables in the house: an empty flat-screen TV box and Xbox box with the rest of your trash. Burglars will know you have some cool stuff.
And one more!!!!!
#11. Social media. Don’t post what you’re doing while you’re on vacation. Save it all for after you get home. Remember, burglars read your posts, too.
Robert Siciliano is a personal security expert to SecurityOptions.com discussing home security and identity theft on TBS Movie and a Makeover. Disclosures.