“The Electronic Security Association (ESA) and Alarm.Org are providing easy security tips and best practices that can help consumers manage the security of their home over the summer months, whether traveling or hosting a backyard cookout with family and friends,” says Angela White, president of ESA. “Security doesn’t have to be complicated, but it should be top-of-mind.”
1. Keep an eye on your home with the help of smart home technology. Many security systems can be integrated with your smart phone which gives you the power to remotely lock doors, arm your alarm and receive alerts with live video.
2. Consider installing door and window sensors. No less than 30 percent of burglars gain access to a home through an unlocked window or door, according to a report featured in Consumer Reports and published by the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
3. Avoid the appearance of a vacant home. Enlist the help of a friend or neighbor to pick up any deliveries, mail or newspapers, and for longer vacations consider hiring a house sitter to keep up the appearance of a routine schedule.
4. Prominently display your home security sign. More than 60 percent of convicted burglars said they would avoid a potential target home if they see an alarm system is present, according to a University of North Carolina at Charlotte survey.
5. Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors – and only light propane and charcoal grills in a well-ventilated, outdoor area. Outdoor grills are a major source of house fires during the summer season, according to research from the National Fire Protection Association. Never grill indoors or in any enclosed space and make sure you always follow the manufacturer’s directions. Also, make sure you are away from your house, deck, trees and anything else that could catch on fire.
6. Practice pool safety. Electronic locks, sensors and motion detectors can alert you if someone enters your pool area without authorization. Adults should actively supervise children when in the water as well as stay within arm’s reach of younger children and newer swimmers. Even experienced swimmers should never swim alone.
7. Keep holiday travel plans off social media. Wait to post photos and other details of your vacation until you are home. This can deter potential criminal surveillance from burglars looking online for vacant homes.
8. Consider installing a professionally monitored security system. A 24-hour monitoring service can dispatch the local police during a break-in or contact the fire department in the event of a fire.
White encourages consumers to visit Alarm.Org for more security tips. “Alarm.Org is sponsored by ESA, which is the largest professional trade association in the U.S. representing the electronic life safety, security and integrated systems industry. We are committed to sharing best practice security tips to help Americans better manage the security of their homes and businesses,” White says.