Christmas trees decked with baubles and laden with presents are a lovely sight, especially for burglars, so it is more important than ever to make sure your home is secure at this time of year.
During the whirlwind of Christmas shopping trips, festive activities and frequent visitors home security can slip and, as a consequence, burglaries increase by up to 20% over the winter months. With this in mind the security experts at Yale have come up with some seasonal advice to stop the Grinch stealing your Christmas.
Who’s at the door?
Tis the season to be jolly and with more frequent visits from family and friends, as well as the odd carol singer, Yale recommends you look through the ‘spy hole’ and enable the door chain before swinging it open. Only release the chain if you are satisfied that the person at the door is really who they say they are and have identification to prove the purpose of their visit – if you are unsure, keep them out.
Raise the alarm
As well as visiting loved ones at Christmas more of us are enjoying winter breaks, so it’s important to make sure your home is protected while you’re away. Alarms act as the perfect ‘security guard’, watching over your property while you’re not there.
Fact: thieves can get through any hole bigger than a human head
Stacking our homes with latest gadgets, laptops and expensive jewellery provides thieves with the perfect incentive to commit burglaries. Statisticsshow that two thirds of burglars gain entry through a door and 30% of burglars access homes through a window. With this in mind it’s vital that your door and window security is up to British standardsduring the darker months.
The Great Outdoors
Outdoor thefts are almost 20% higher compared with five years ago and at this time of year sheds are often used to store Christmas presents such as bicycles and power tools. You can secure your outbuildings with a weather-proof padlock to help deter would-be thieves and protect against unwanted intruders. Heavy-duty padlocks are recommended for shed doors, while anchor locks and cables can be used to secure high value individual items inside an outbuilding.
Don’t advertise your presents
Be careful to dispose of gift packaging carefully. Rubbish collections over the Christmas and New Year period are often at different times, so remember to take note of any changes. Make sure you put your rubbish out just before the collection and shred any details you wouldn’t want people to see.
It’s a good idea to take labels off boxes to avoid advertising the contents of your home to thieves and you should also resist the urge to advertise your new Christmas gifts to everyone on Facebook. You don’t want to create a catalogue for burglars to choose from - especially if you tag yourself at an airport 3 days later!
Another top tip for Christmas safety is to make sure all your valuable items are out of sight and to use timers when you go for an evening out to create the illusion of occupancy. By following these simple tips you can help protect your belongings, homes and families over the festive period, ensuring everyone has a very merry – and safe – Christmas.
Christmas present ideas
For the gadget lover
Keyless Digital Door Lock
It’s perfect for the DIY mad dad or the gadget lover in your life. The Keyless is modern, sleek, stylishand is the very latest in locking technology.
It means the days of hunting for lost keys are over, as home owners are able to access and protect their homes with just a personalised PIN number - ideal if your partial to running as you don’t have to carry keys!
They can be quickly and easily fitted to the majority of timber doors with a night latch (RRP £99.99).
Yale’s CCTV Kit offers the ultimate peace of mind for security conscious homeowners, with 24-hour surveillance, easy fit installation, high resolution images and app controlled technology, this kit brings the world of the rich and famous to the average UK homeowner. The centralised app allows users to control their CCTV and access images via their smartphone, as well as controlling their Yale Easy Fit alarm.
For the first time homeowners can control their home security all at the touch of a button - app, tap and away – simple. (RRP from £260)
For the green fingered
The stand-alone alarm is ideal for green-fingered friends, as they offer peace of mind whilst gardeners are away. They protect high value gardening tools or prized gardening possessions in sheds, garages and outbuildings.
The Stand Alone Alarms can be placed freestanding on a shelf or fixed to a wall, and will alert you if an intruder breaks in. Each alarm can be accessorised with a remote key fob, so you can easily arm and disarm your system from a distance. (RRP 25.99)
For the kids
These fun novelty padlocks will give your little onesbackpack, sports bag or gym locker the perfect look, showing off their style whilst keeping their belongings safe and secure! (RRP 4.99)