Sunday, March 6, 2011

Crime Prevention Tip of the Month: Break, Enter and Theft Prevention

The following tips were extracted from the Toronto Police Service, Division 22, March Bulletin,

Almost everyone has an opinion on trends in break-and-enters, on why they occur or how to prevent them. Here are some facts regarding a few myths about break-ins.

Myth: Most residential break-ins happen at night.

NO, most residential break-ins actually happened during the day, when the majority of people are not home.

Myth: An alarm system is all that I need to protect my home and family.

Unfortunately, this is not the view shared by the average thief and you still may be at risk.

Residential alarms do indeed offer an increased level of security and some deterrence to criminals. However, alarms should not be considered as exclusive replacements for other home/business security measures, but used in conjunction with them. Example: An exterior mounted alarm with flashing strobe light could be used. This would alert your neighbours and have your neighbours as potential witnesses.

Myth: Most break-ins occur through a back door or window of the residence.

NO, the majority of break-ins occur through the FRONT DOOR or through a FRONT WINDOW. It is then very important to have properly secured windows and doors, the weakest points of home and business security.

Most windows can be pinned for additional security or with self-tapping screws in the upper track to prevent windows from being removed. Locks should have no plastic parts in the locking mechanism.

Some Helpful Hints:

·      Do not allow strangers in the building lobby.
·      When on vacation, do not inform everyone on the social network. Inform only a trusted neighbour.
·      Cancel all deliveries, including the daily paper.
·      Use timers to activate lights/radios at different intervals.
·      Ensure all doors and windows are secured.
·      Be a good neighbour and report any suspicious activity to police.

PC Michel LeBlanc
22 Division, Crime Prevention