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Burglary Prevention Day: Seven tips for your safe home!

The number of burglaries will continue to rise in 2023: You can protect your house and flat with simple behavioural patterns and security devices that can be conveniently retrofitted.

The dark season begins and, as experience shows, the number of burglaries rises again. But they are already at a high level. In the first half of 2023, 28 percent more burglaries were registered in North Rhine-Westphalia than in the same period of the previous year. On the occasion of "Burglary Protection Day" on 29 October, security specialist BURG-WÄCHTER has compiled seven important tips on how to optimally protect your house and flat.

The figures for 2023 as a whole are not yet available. But the trend is clear: After a increase of 21.5 percent in the number of residential burglaries in Germany in 2022, the negative trend remains unbroken. Thus, in the first half of 2023, around 28 percent more residential burglaries were registered in North Rhine-Westphalia than in the same period of the previous year. This is according to the latest figures of the state Ministry of the Interior.

Burglaries cause material damage and psychological stress

A burglary in one's own four walls not only causes material damage of more than 3,000 euros on average, but often also leaves psychological traces. After all, strangers have invaded the most private area of one's life. Especially now - in the dark season - the number of burglary attempts increases even more. But one thing is clear: burglars are generally active all year round!

"One hour more for more security"

However, you can protect yourself from burglary with simple means and precautions. This is precisely why the "Burglary Prevention Day" was launched in 2012 by the Police Crime Prevention Unit. Under the motto "One hour more for more security", it takes place annually on the day when Central European Summer Time ends - this year on 29 October. Citizens should use the extra hour "gained" on this day to inform themselves about burglary protection and to think about implementing the security recommendations in their everyday lives.

BURG-WÄCHTER has summarised the most important seven tips on how to significantly increase burglary protection for houses and flats. So that burglars are deterred and the number of attempted burglaries decreases again in the future!

Seven tips for burglary protection: How to make your home safe!

  1. Use additional security devices for windows and doors

    Patio doors and windows in particular are the main targets of burglars. According to the "Cologne Study" on crime prevention, only 1.05 percent of burglary attempts are successful if additional security devices are installed at these sensitive points. For comparison: According to police crime statistics, more than 50 percent of burglary attempts nationwide were successful in 2022. The window locks WinSafe WS 22 and WinSafe WS 33 provide particularly good protection. Both models from BURG-WÄCHTER have been awarded "very good" by Stiftung-Warentest. Strong burglary protection is also offered by special window grilles such as those from the WinProtec series, which prevent entry. These are available as standard for windows in standard sizes or optionally as made-to-measure for windows of any size.

  2. Deter burglars

    Whether it is a highly visible alarm system or a video camera: if burglars recognise such security systems, they become more cautious. Of course, these security measures are no guarantee that no burglary will be attempted. But modern video surveillance systems - for example from BURG-GUARD - can trigger an alarm to the resident in the event of unauthorised entry to the property and at the same time secure evidence recordings.

  3. Don't help the perpetrators

    It's often the small, simple things that people don't think about when it comes to burglary protection. This is how we can - quite unknowingly - become valuable helpers to burglars. This starts with supposedly "well hidden" house keys under the doormat or in a flower pot and tilted windows, leads to practical climbing aids in the form of easily accessible ladders or trellises on the house and ends with the announcement on social media channels that one is still on holiday for a few days. In a British study, for example, 78 percent of the burglars surveyed said that they use social media to identify potential targets. It is therefore better not to share your holiday happiness with the whole world on Instagram & Co.

  4. Simulate presence

    Permanently closed blinds, a jam-packed letterbox and no lights in the house. These are all sure signs that the occupants are not at home - and probably for a longer period of time. Therefore: Simulate presence, for example via controllable timers or WLAN sockets such as the Plug model. This allows you to switch lamps or televisions on and off according to an individual schedule. Electric shutters can now also be controlled via Smart Home. Or ask your neighbour to raise and lower the shutters. Then he can also take the mail out of the letterbox at the same time.

  5. Consider other means of entry

    Patio doors and windows on the ground floor are, as mentioned, the preferred means of entry for burglars. It is good and right that these are additionally secured. But these are not the only options for criminals. They like to use cellar windows, balcony doors or laundry room entrances. Do not underestimate these burglary options and check their security as well.

  6. Lights on

    Light is generally a good protection against burglars. This does not only apply to the interior. It is also important that potential entry points are well lit in the dark so that attempted burglaries can be detected by passers-by. This applies to front doors and especially to terraces and other windows on the ground floor. LED lighting with motion detectors has proven its worth. These are extremely energy-saving and only become active when movement is registered. The sudden light can deter burglars.

  7. Valuables belong in a safe

    In case a burglar gets into the house despite all security measures, valuables, important documents and personal treasures should not be freely accessible. The right place is a high-quality safe. If it is properly anchored, burglars have little chance of taking the safe and breaking it open at their leisure in a safe place. This is because burglars do not usually take the risk of opening the safe directly in the house. The risk of being discovered is too great for them. Furniture safes for installation in cupboards and desks have proven their worth. Fire safes provide double protection against burglars and in the event of a fire. For those who need more space and want to secure larger valuables, a safes or a document cabinet is the right choice.