Back in the days when CCTV was a relatively new product on the domestic security scene, there was market for dummy cameras to act as a deterrent to thieves. Some of these fake CCTV cameras looked quite convincing, even having a cable attached to a wall to make it appear live, and with red flashing LEDs acting as a dummy operational light. Burglars may have been fooled for a while, but part of the Continued Professional Development curriculum of the professional domestic burglar is identifying which cameras are real, and which are fake. In the modern world a fake CCTV camera is no longer an effective deterrent, so what can homeowners with dummy cameras do to improve their home security and make it a less attractive target?
The obvious answer is to install real CCTV cameras. There are a number of systems on the market from cameras which keep a local recording for 24 hours before the tape is recorded over, to fully monitored systems with a live presence and off-site storage for footage. The level of system you choose depends on the crime rate in your area and what you are willing to spend. The footage from CCTV cameras can be invaluable in gaining a conviction, and also for police records. CCTV cameras can also help reduce anti-social behaviour, if the ne’er-do-wells in question are worried about being caught.
Alarm bell boxes on the outside of properties have also always been considered to be a deterrent, as thieves are less likely to attempt a break in to an alarmed property than one which has no external evidence of a security system. As thieves become more brazen, or perhaps more stupid, we are seeing more and more break-ins at properties with clearly operational alarm systems. The benefit in having a real alarm bell box over a dummy one is that if burglars decide to chance it, they will be scared off when the alarm starts blaring. There may be some damage to the property, but your valuables inside are still safe.
If you have a dummy bell box or you simply don’t activate your NSI Gold standard intruder alarm then now is the time to change your attitude and take home security more seriously. If a burglary happened because you had not set the alarm it would be very hard to absolve yourself of any blame, but if you are strict about the activation of your NSI approved alarm system then you can be assured that you have taken all the steps you can to protect your home and your possessions.
Neighbourhood Watch stickers are another deterrent that many people gain a sense of security from. This is all well and good, but we must remember that burglars are professionals, albeit nefarious ones. They will have been successful in burgling homes displaying a Neighbourhood Watch sticker in the past, so the one in your window means very little to them. It is also important to remember that a Neighbourhood Watch scheme only operates when people are in their homes and able to be vigilant. If you live in a commuter area where most properties are empty during the day, then a sticker in the window means nothing.
A “beware of the dog” notice is a better deterrent, as one which displays a snarling Alsatian will make a burglar think twice, especially if they are wearing their best trousers and don’t want a leg ripped off! These work best when they are backed up by the presence of a dog, but even if you don’t have one they are worth considering as an additional deterrent.
You can’t put a price on peace of mind, but we think you will be pleasantly surprised to know that the cost of installing an NSI approved burglar alarm or CCTV system is very reasonable, especially in light of the value of the items it will protect. Call us today on 01905 799949 to find out how easy it is to get protected.