A security alarm system is an important part of your home security plan. In addition to your alarm, there are many things you should be aware of, that will help you to strengthen your safety campaign. Be cautious at all times and especially around the holidays, due to an increase in criminal activity.
* A quality deadbolt lock on all perimeter doors is always your first line of defense. A door is most often the point of entry for an intruder. If you don't have a quality lock the perpetrator knows that a good blow will break the non-fortified wood that is holding the door lock cylinder in place. A quick entry and closing of the door hides the damage, as it will be on the inside.
* If you just moved in to your home or business, you should change the key cylinders on all locks, as you don't know who has a copy of the key.
* Cut the cord handle off your electric garage door openers. It's easy to push the top of your garage door in enough to put a wire hanger in and hook the release handle. By pulling on the handle, a burglar will override the screw or chain drive and be able to manually lift the overhead door. Once protected by the privacy of your garage, entry to the home is inevitable. Be sure to leave just enough cord so that you can use it from inside if needed, but not enough to reach the top of the overhead door!
* Burglars hate light. You should replace outside perimeter lighting with motion activated lamps. These are very inexpensive these days and readily available at most hardware and electronic stores. The protection they will provide coupled with the convenience of having a well lit area to come home to, make them a must have.
* Place timers on a few of your inside lights to give the appearance that someone is home. It is always smart to vary the time every few days so that a pattern is not realized, if you are being cased. X10 makes a variable timer that will change the timing for you automatically.
* If your last name is posted on your mailbox, a burglar can get your listed phone number from information. By ringing your phone with no answer, they would be able to assume that you are not home.
* Turn down the volume on your answering machine so that burglars can't hear that no one's home if the phone should ring.
* Don't hide keys outside your home, as they will be found. Leave a spare with a trusted neighbor instead.
* Leaving ladders and tools outside your home can trigger a burglar's impulse, even if that was not on the schedule today.
* When leaving your home for daily routine, be sure to vary times and direction of travel. Your repetitive actions are a gift to potential burglars who are always on the prowl for their next victim.
* Remove or place a light on shrubs that can easily conceal a waiting burglar from site.
* When you buy new appliances like televisions or stereo's and computers be sure to hide or destroy the boxes. New valuables are an invitation to a burglar's already distorted senses.
* Don't ever tell a stranger that you are home alone.
* Install a peep hole viewer, if you do not have a convenient window to check who is at your door before opening it to a stranger.
* If someone asks to use your phone for an emergency take the information through closed doors and inform them that you will make the call for them.
* If you see signs of entry, DO NOT ENTER the house. Go to the neighbors, to call for help and be on the lookout for strange cars or people near your home.
* Always keep your cell phone in your bedroom with you. If the phone lines are cut you will need it to call for help.
* Don't leave a purse, wallet or laptop on the counters that can be seen from a window. This will almost always trigger a forced entry.
* Security signs without corresponding security company stickers on the windows, may lead a passing burglar to believe that you don't really have an alarm system installed.
* When traveling put your office address and cell phone numbers on your luggage tags. A baggage handler will know that you are not home.
* Remove all address information from your parked car at the airport. Anyone who breaks into your vehicle would know you are not home and have your address and garage door opener.
* Don't leave notes on the door telling someone that you are not home and what time you will be back.