We all long for summer and the opportunity to be outside and go away on a needed vacation. Yet, a recent report from the Bureau of Justice statistics reveals that home burglaries increase during the summer months. Home burglaries are crimes of opportunity. That is, a thief notices an open window or lawn equipment is left unprotected in plain sight. Having property damaged and stolen during a burglary is bad enough. Home burglaries are worse when thieves help themselves to electronics or rifle through important papers. Your risk to be a victim of may identity theft is also enhanced.
Here are Seven Tips to improve the Safety and Security of your home during the summer months.
Security in and around your house
- Ask your local police department if they offer residential security inspections. Many jurisdictions do, many for free. An officer will come to your house and identify ways to increase your home’s security.
- Store any paper documents such as bank or credit card statements, tax filings, or medical records information in a locked filing cabinet or safe. Much identity theft occurs by paper files getting into the wrong hands. However, review security on your computer and scan for malware and remove as soon as possible.
- Check the batteries on your security system and test the alarm on a frequent basis. Notify your security alarm company when leaving for vacation and provide contact information of a nearby relative or friend who can get to your residence in case of an emergency.
- Set lights on a timer so that it looks like someone is at home. There are actually apps for this and you may be able to set them remotely.
- Notify the post office and stop delivery of your mail and/or newspapers while you are out of town. Have a trusted family member or friend check your home on a regular basis. They can remove any papers, flyers, etc. that may end up on your doorstep or in your mailbox. They can also make sure that no unwanted guests to tried to make themselves home while you are away.
- Change the default password on your wireless router. It’s no secret that manufacturers often use the same, simple user name or password for all their routers. If you don’t change them, hackers or even curious neighbors potentially can access your network and everything connected to it.
- Use strong, unique passwords for each online account and device. A password manager can generate complex passwords and store them for you.
Your home is your castle and taking these simple steps help make your home safer for you and your family. Worry less and live more.