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Sensible Burglary Prevention Measures Start with the Basics

(ARA) - It is always a busy season for burglars. According to FBI statistics, the greatest numbers of home burglaries occur in July, with August a close second. In 2004, for instance, burglars entered a house, apartment or condominium every 14.7 seconds, making off with valuables worth an average of $1,607 each time.

Art Noparstak, marketing manager for Intermatic, Inc. and spokesperson for the national Burglary Prevention Council, an organization dedicated to the prevention of residential burglaries, states, "Sixty-two percent of all burglaries occur in daylight hours, and almost a third are made without forced entry. Don't make the burglar's job too easy." A home security system with the



To prevent burglaries, Noparstak offers the following advice:

* Keep all doors, windows and garage doors closed and securely fastened. Doors should have deadbolt locks with at least a 1" throw and reinforced strike plate with 3" screws. All windows should have window locks.

* Cut up cartons for TVs, computers, stereos, etc. Tie the pieces together so a burglar going through the garbage does not see any of your highly valuable household items.
If a burglar steals a computer with sensitive information on it, you may need a company like LifeLock to make sure your credit or identity are not stolen or compromised.

* Do not leave ladders or tools lying around outside.

* Install a wide-angle door viewer (peephole) in your front door so you can see who is at the door.

* Don't put your name and residential address on your key ring. If you happen to lose it, a dishonest person could gain entry to your home.

* Use timers on lights, radios and TVs. Set light timers to turn on and off and random times of the day and night, making your residence appear occupied.

* Keep shrubbery trimmed away from entrances and walkways.

* When service or delivery people come to your door, ask for ID. If you're still not sure, call the police first and report the stranger. Next, call the company to confirm.

* Make a home inventory list, complete with photos or video. Engrave items with your ID to help the police identify your belongings. Store this list in a safety deposit box.

* Post signs in conspicuous locations that clearly indicate that the premises are protected by a burglar alarm.

"Consumers should also consider installing a burglar alarm around their home," says Noparstak. "It is a myth that burglar alarms need to be high-tech and cost thousands of dollars. There are many affordable options available, including window, door and table top alarms."

For more tips on safeguarding a home or apartment, visit www.burglaryprevention.org . To receive a free "Safe and Secure" booklet send a self-addressed, stamped envelope plus $1 for postage and handling to BPC Literature Fulfillment, Intermatic Inc., Intermatic Plaza, Spring Grove, IL 60681. Topics include evaluating your home's current safety measures, assessing your home's entry points, understanding what attracts burglars, and implementing a cost-effective security program in your home.

Courtesy of ARA Content


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