Crime increases as clocks go forward

Police forces across the country are urging homeowners to be more vigilant now that the clocks have gone forward and we enter British Summer Time.burglar breaking into shed

The lighter evenings and warmer weather are often seen as perfect conditions for opportunist burglars as lots of people let their guard down when it comes to protecting their homes.

Stuart Grimsey, Chief Inspector of Suffolk Constabulary, said: “Most thefts from homes and vehicles  are carried out by opportunist thieves who look out for lapses in security – such as doors and windows left open or property left on display in vehicles, especially in areas popular with tourists to our county.

“People are advised to make use of simple crime prevention methods which deprive thieves of the opportunity to steal.”

It’s not just our homes that need protecting, burglaries of garages and outbuildings have seen a sharp rise in the last few years. Rural crime, in particular, is rising at an alarming rate, leaving those living the country life in a vulnerable position.

Tips to secure your property

There are several things you can do to ensure that your property is as secure as can be against criminals.

Windows
– Always lock your windows when you leave the house.
– Remove the keys and keep them in a safe place. However, everyone should know where the keys are kept so they can escape in an emergency.

Doors
– Keep your front and back doors locked or in view when you are at home.
– Use or consider fitting a door chain and spy hole – a chain allows you to speak to the caller without opening the door fully and the spy hole also you to see who is at the door.
– Fit five lever mortise locks to all external doors.
– Check your cylinder locks on patio/plastic doors and ensure they are snap and bump resistant – a local Master Locksmith can advise if you are not sure.

Keys
– Never leave a spare key in a convenient hiding place such as under the doormat, burglars know all the usual hiding places.
– Never leave your house or car keys in or near a door or window.

To be ultra-secure, why not consider installing a monitored burglar alarm system? Designed to protect you against intruders, fire and also panic or medical emergencies, the Smart Home Protection system connects your property to a central monitoring station, so help is always at hand, no matter what time of day or night.