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Don’t let burglars in this winter

Sunday, October 26 sees the official end of the UK’s British Summer Time (BST) and will mark the start of prolonged hours of darkness. The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) is stressing to home owners and businesses the importance of effective security measures throughout these darker nights.

James Kelly, Chief Executive of the BSIA, says: “Darker nights can signal the start of the burglar’s favourite time of year, with properties more vulnerable to opportunistic crime when left in darkness for longer, particularly as we approach the festive season. However, there are a wide variety of preventative security measures that can be taken to ensure that your property is protected around the clock. Putting these measures in place does not have to be a costly or lengthy process, and often by simply adopting straightforward steps it is possible to dramatically reduce the likelihood of an incident occurring.”

Firstly, the Worcester-based trade body suggests, check that your gates, doors and windows are securely locked at all times, whether the premises is vacant or not. It is also essential to ensure that your locks are still effective, taking the time to replace them if necessary. If you are leaving your property for an extended period of time to travel during the festive season, ensure that your curtains are kept closed but leave a light on, or ask someone you trust to keep an eye on your property. CCTV is another aspect of security that can help to keep a watchful eye on your property. However, it is important to note that if your premises does utilise electronic security measures, you must adjust the settings to match the change in natural lighting. For example, if your remote monitoring and lighting systems are controlled separately, the timer on the lighting must be adjusted once the clocks change. If these systems are out of sync, it could result in an unwanted gap in the footage before the lighting turns on, possibly allowing for an intruder to take advantage of the darkness.

In fact, lighting in general is a useful security measure. Ensure that adequate lighting is in place, particularly in vital areas of a property. However, too much lighting in the wrong area can also lead to issues; for example, a light that shines directly into a CCTV camera could impair the recordings.

“There are a wide range of security measures available on the market to protect people and their properties during the winter months,” adds James Kelly. “However, when sourcing a solution, it is important that no corners are cut when it comes to choosing a quality supplier. Poor quality products can lead to further problems down the line, so ensure that you are choosing a professional security provider who meets with the appropriate British and European standards for their product or service.” To find a BSIA member near you, visit www.bsia.co.uk/companyfinder.


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