Playing it safe


New research indicates complacent New Zealanders are not following basic steps to prevent burglary.

– 26 percent hide spare house keys outside for family members and tradespeople

– 20 percent leave home or go to bed without locking up.

As part of the inaugural Secure Homes Report, ADT Security surveyed 1,047 homeowners and renters in both metropolitan and regional areas of New Zealand. The research found one in three respondents has been subject to a break-in, with 17 percent of these intrusions happening while someone was at home.

Furthermore, 11 percent of those affected by burglary have experienced more than one break-in at their current residence.

Surprisingly, nearly 10 percent of break-ins occurred by way of unforced window entry, where the window or door had been left ajar or unlocked, highlighting the need for Kiwis to be more vigilant about securing their home.

Ben Clements from ADT Security says the research results indicate that New Zealanders are making it easy for burglars to break into their homes. “One in five leaves home without locking up, 18 percent go to bed without securing windows and doors and 26 percent of people hide their spare keys outside for tradespeople, cleaners or family members. This level of complacency is concerning.”

ADT Security encourages householders to carry out a security assessment of their property and consider a monitored alarm system to better protect themselves from burglary and other crimes.

“A good approach is to think like a thief. Walk around your property and identify where it is vulnerable. Once you identify your weak spots you can look at ways of reinforcing them. It’s important to remember that being at home doesn’t mean that you should leave your windows and doors open. Most break-ins occur when homeowners have presented burglars with an opportunity, like an unlocked window, whether they are home or not.”

Home security tips:

•     Locks on doors and windows should always be the first line of defence
•     Don’t leave packaging of new appliances on the footpath in front of your house; this just advertises         that you have new goods worth stealing. Instead tear up the box and put it in the recycling
•     If your home has a shed or garage, ensure it is properly secured – not only  could items be stolen, but items in the shed or garage can be used to help break into your property
•     Ensure spare keys aren’t hidden in obvious places. Thieves know to look in mailboxes, under doormats         and above doorways for keys. Don’t make it easy forthem to enter your home
•     With apartments or multi-storey homes, be aware of locking doors and windows, as burglars can  scale exterior walls
•     A monitored home alarm is one of the most effective security measures. It’s possible to isolate certain         zones of the home to be monitored, so that alarms can be activated even when the home is occupied. In the event that         an ADT alarm is triggered, a signal is sent to a 24 hour Security Response Centre where trained operators         identify the cause and take appropriate action.

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