Tag Archive: security systems

  1. How To Protect Your Home and Family During The Holidays

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    The Holidays. A time for joy, getting together with friends and family, giving gifts, and… break-ins?

     

    Unfortunately burglars view the holiday season a little differently…for them, it is a time of opportunity to burglarize your home for cash, credit cards, and gifts.

     

    According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, nearly 400,000 burglaries take place in the U.S. between November and December each year.

     

    The National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC) says families should be extra careful during the winter months, especially if your home is filled with new gifts or if you have impending travel plans.

     

    Here are a few tips to help keep you, your family and your home safe during the Holidays.

     

    Do Not Advertise Your Travel Plans

     

    However your home looks when you are home, is how it needs to look when you are away. Consider buying timers for your lights or having home automation which allows you to turn your lights on or off from your smartphone and gives you the ability to set “scenes” ahead of time so your lights come on and off automatically at times you have set. Our Lynx Touch and Tuxedo Touch security systems give you the ability to control your lights from your panel, and when coupled with Total Connect, you have the ability to control them straight from your smartphone, tablet or computer.

     

    Ask your neighbors to make tracks in the snow going from the drive way to the front door and to park their car in your driveway from time to time. This will give the impression that you are home to potential burglars. Fresh snow drifts are a dead giveaway that your home is unoccupied. You can also put in a request with your local post office to hold your mail and packages while you are away.

     

    Avoid posting your travel plans on social networking sites. You never know who may see them. Also, avoid posting pictures of your vacation until you return home.

     

    Do Not Show Off Your Gifts

     

    Your loved ones are not the only ones excited by gifts, burglars can be too. Avoid placing wrapped or unwrapped presents where they can be viewed from the outside of the home. Keep them away from windows, doors and any other part of the house that gives outsiders a peek in. Do not put boxes in your trash that advertise expensive or valuable items. Instead, burn them or cut them up and place them securely in a trash bag and/or can. It is not all too uncommon for burglars to look at someone’s trash in order to determine the value of breaking into their home.

     

    Update and Secure Your Home Entry Points

     

    Windows and doors are main entry points into your home. Make sure they are secure. A solid door with updated locks and a window with locks can be the deciding factor in whether or not your home is a good target. Easy target homes are the ones most often broken in to.

     

    People often have the misconception that a deadbolt lock will keep you secure. The area around the dealbolt needs to be secure as well. Use atleast 3 inch screws when securing your locks and be sure the door ways are solid and strong. If the doorway gives in when someone tries to kick in your door, the type of locks you have no longer matter.

     

    If running an extension cord through a window for outside holiday décor, make sure to secure the window. Use a rod to keep the window from opening past a certain point.

     

    Be Very Aware Of Your Surroundings

     

    Most burglars live in the neighborhood in which they commit the crime. When unloading your gifts from your car, be sure to look around and make sure no one is watching. It is also important to be mindful when loading your gifts into your car from the store. Make sure no one is following you to or from your car and be aware of any suspicious people lurking around. Avoid parking next to large vans as it not only hides you from the view of other people, but someone can be in the van waiting for an opportunity.

     

    Get A Home Security System

     

    The biggest deterrent for burglars is an alarm system. According to statistics from a 2009 study by the Rutgers University School of Criminal Justice, an installed burglar alarm makes a home less attractive to intruders by 20 percent. Not only does it protect your home, but may help protect your neighbors’ as well. It has been found that neighborhoods where security systems are present are less likely to be a target for burglaries.

     

    Modern Systems offers top of the line home security systems. With a trusted brand like Honeywell, you know you are getting reliable products. Whether you are in need of a simple system with a few door and window contacts, or a more complex system with sirens, cameras and remote access from your smart phone, we can help. Call and talk with a Systems Representative for a free, no obligation consultation and quote. 1-800-252-7664

     
     

  2. How To Protect Yourself and Family From Home Invasions

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    With upwards of 8,000+ home invasions happening every year in the United States, it is important to know how to protect yourself and your family, and how to secure your home to better resist becoming a victim.

     

    There is a difference between a burglary and a home invasion. A burglary takes place when no one is home, while a home invasion takes place when you are. Most home invasions happen in the early evening hours through early morning on weekdays and weekends.

     

    It is important to understand the criminals of a home invasion and some characteristics of these potentially violent people. They like to target homes where they are less likely to face resistance and they will gain access to important information such as jewelry, cash, pin numbers and safe codes.

     

    Unlike typical home burglars, home invasions require time, forethought and homework. These criminals will typically spend the time to properly target a person or residence. They will pay attention to things such as your routine, when neighbors are usually away, the types of places you shop and what person in typically at home at what time.

     

    These criminals are known to use deception to approach your residence posing as a delivery man or salesman. Always be suspicious of those that you allow into your home. If something doesn’t feel right ask them to leave and request someone else or go with another company, if that doesn’t make them leave, call the police immediately and alert your neighbors of the incident.

     

    Know your neighborhood—if you notice something is out of place or suspicious, report it to the local authorities. It is better to be safe than sorry.

     

    Home invaders typically look for what is referred to as a soft target. Single women, women with children, elderly and the disabled are prime targets. This is because they typically put up less resistance, mostly out of fear or inability.

     

    Method of Operation

     

    The most common point of attack is through the front door or garage. Sometimes the home invader will simply kick open the door and confront everyone inside. More common is when the home invaders knock on the door first or ring the bell. The home invader hopes that the occupant will simply open the door, without question, in response to their knock. Unfortunately, many people do just that.

     

    Home invaders will sometimes use a ruse or impersonation to get you to open the door. They have been known to pretend to be delivering a package, flowers or lie about an accident like hitting your parked car or an animal (do not open the door and offer to call the police for them, if they become persistant, irritated or if you notice they move on to the next residence, call the police immediately.) Once the door is opened for them, the home invaders will use an explosive amount of force and threats to gain control of the home and produce fear in the victims. Once the occupants are under control the robbers will begin to collect your valuables.

     

    Some home robbers have been known to spend hours ransacking a residence while the homeowners are bound nearby watching in terror. Some robbers have been known to eat meals, watch TV, or even take a nap. A major fear is that the robbers might commit more violence like sexual assault or even murder. Some robbers have kidnapped and forced a victim to withdraw cash from their ATM machine or take them to their small business to rob it as well.

     
     

    So how do you protect yourself from these sort of crimes? The same tactics used to prevent daytime burglaries will go a long way to preventing forced entry home robberies. If you can delay a home invader at the point of entry then you have a chance of deterring them or have time to call the police.

     

    Home Exterior:

    • • Keep your house well lit at night. Motion detecting flood lights on low lit areas of your home are typically a good idea.
    • • Have an alarm system and place stickers on all the windows and a sign in the yard to let them know you are protected.
    • • Do not leave heavy objects in the backyard that can be used to throw through windows, particularly patio furniture and heavy stones.
    • • Invest in security cameras with motion sensors and a solid recording device like a DVR. Internet cameras or a remote controlling system such as Total Connect is a good option if you are away from home but still want to monitor it.
    • • Have a zone alarm to alert you when someone is coming to the door or up the driveway.
    • • Use highly visible house numbers so police can easily identify your home.
    • • Have security gate and fence around your home.
    • • Do not enter your home if it looks like it has been broken in to or if something seems out of place. Leave the premises and contact your local authorities immediately.
    • • Be aware of the trash that you leave on the curb. Break down boxes from recently purchase big ticket items and conceal them from prying eyes.

    Windows:

    • • Always lock windows, even those on the second floor.
    • • Use secondary locking devices on windows to prevent them from opening past a certain height.
    • • Ensure windows have vibration or glass-break sensors connected to your home alarm system.
    • • Consider solar screens on your windows which will not only save you on cooling costs, but allow privacy.
    • • Look at anti-break window film as an option.
    • • Put a dowel rod in the track of your sliding glass door.
    • • Be aware of bushes surrounding exterior windows, you do not want to provide them with a place to hide. If you do want one, consider one with sharp leaves or thorns to discourage these as entry points, but keep them trimmed.

    Doors:

    • • Invest in anti-kick door solutions to prevent brute force entry. A door chain isn’t going to help one bit.
    • • Upgrade your locks to high security locks.
    • • At the very least, install longer screws into your door hinges, preferably 3 inch screws.
    • • Do not hide a spare key outside, instead keep one with a trust worthy neighbor.

    Home Interior:

    • • Get a home security system with interior motion detectors and set the alarm when you are at home. Criminals rely on an alarm not being set while someone is home and awake.
    • • Ensure your alarm is monitored and has power back up and cellular capabilities incase the power or phone lines are cut.
    • • Have a secondary alarm keypad in your master bedroom that can be used to sound a panic alarm or quickly access alarm controls.
    • • Keep a spare cell phone stashed in a spot with in the home and make sure all family members know where it is. This can be used to call the police.
    • • Get a dog. A barking dog will bring unwanted attention to a potential burglar.
    • • Change alarm codes often.
    • • Discuss the importance of home security with everyone, it only takes one person to forget to lock a door or window.
    • • Bolt down safes and lock up expensive items like bikes and four-wheelers.

    Now a few statistics about home invasions and why you should take steps necessary to protect you and your family from them:

    • • One in five homes undergoes a home invasion or break-in.
    • • There are more than 8,000 home invasions every year in the U.S.
    • • 50% of home invasions involve the use of a weapon.
    • • In 48% of home invasions, victims sustain physical injuries.
    • • Victims age 60 or older make up 17% of home invasion victims.
    • • In 68% of home invasions, victims and the accused are strangers, in 11% of these cases, victims and the accused are friends, business associates or family.
    • • 38% of physical assaults and 60% of sexual assaults occur during home invasions.

     

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