Security is a paramount concern for households, even if it is not a forefront worry most of the time. Burglary rates have risen in the UK, in turn giving rise to a renaissance in personal safety and home protection considerations – but how can you make your own home feel safer and more comfortable in both the short and long term?
The first and perhaps most prescient route to protecting your home would come in the form of installing cameras. Proper CCTV systems remain prohibitively expensive for most, but video doorbell systems have exploded in popularity – and remain incredibly cheap to purchase. Even old smartphones can be repurposed as ‘nanny-cams’ with the installation of an app, allowing you to monitor your home inside and out with ease.
If someone is determined to break into your home, there is little to stop them from continuing to try. As such, it is also prudent for you to consider safe storage of belongings. A wardrobe safe can be useful for stowing valuable jewellery, while locks on things like tool cabinets in your garage can make for an effective deterrent most of the time. Even keeping your car in the garage can help reduce opportunistic crime.
How you store your valuable items can also have positive impacts even in the event of theft, attempted theft or crime-related damage. For example, car insurance premiums could be affected by your best efforts to protect your investment if you store your car away from the road in a secure garage. Demonstrating that you’ve taken every reasonable precaution to protect your belongings makes the claim process simpler, to boot.
Home security is as much about deterrence as it is direct prevention – if not more so. To this end, adding security lights around your home’s perimeter can be a highly effective security investment. Motion sensors activate halogen lights, illuminating would-be intruders and inspiring them to flee. In the event that they do not, the light allows your cameras to get a clear picture of them.
In focusing on physical defences and deterrents, it can be easy to neglect the digital part of the equation regarding your home’s security. This can mean two distinct things: namely, the security of your WiFi network and (if applicable) IoT devices, or the safety of your family members regarding their internet presence.
The former could present a risk where tech-savvy criminals might exploit your home’s network in order to release electronic locks or disable IoT-connected surveillance and alarm systems. This is a highly unlikely outcome for all but the most affluent of households, given the effort and foreknowledge required – but is nonetheless a consideration to be made in today’s tech-led world.
More importantly, it is crucial that members of your household understand cybersecurity well. Too much information given away online could lead criminals to your doorstep, and actively endanger you in the process. Keeping social media profiles private is a good start, and training your family to avoid sharing details with anyone but verifiable close contacts is essential.
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