Safeguard Security has warned of the need to make use of the varying layers of security that protect residential and commercial properties, in view of the general increase in break-ins particularly at sites without any security protection.
“If you have an electric fence, make sure that you also lock up properly and that your alarm and your response link are working,” Safeguard Alarms managing director Reason Chitiva said.
The company’s latest break-in report cites instances of where robberies took place because the alarm was not armed and, in one case, a door was not locked. In other cases items were stolen from parts of the premises not covered by an alarm.
In most cases where an alarm was set off, the intruders fled empty handed or with a few items that they grabbed quickly as they were making their escape.
“It is a mistake to think that because you have an electric fence, you can leave your house doors unlocked and your alarm switched off. While an electric fence provides good protections and will normally set off the alarm if touched, thieves can sometimes still manage to enter the premises undetected.
“In one incident last month intruders armed with knives gained entry into the yard of a house in Mount Pleasant, in Harare, in the evening by breaking the durawall. They were able to steal items from the cottage, because the alarm system had not yet been armed. The panic button was only pressed after the intruders had gone,” he said.
“It is important to make use of every layer of security you have. Make sure your fence alarm is switched on. Make sure the doors of your house are locked. Switch on your alarm in parts of the house that are unoccupied, particularly in the early evening. Ensure that before you retire to bed windows are closed, internal doors locked and the alarm armed so that it covers all sectors. Make sure you know where your panic buttons are and that they can easily be used when needed.
“The targeting of premises or parts of premises without any security coverage show how important it is for everyone to have some sort of security in place, be it burglar bars, security fences, alarms or other more advanced systems such as security cameras linked to an alarm.
“Ideally everyone should have at least a basic alarm system installed that is linked to a rapid response service. If you do not have this in place, you can still take what security precautions you can by ensuring your external doors are always locked, that windows are closed in the evening and that internal doors are locked before you retire to bed.
“There is no doubt that there has been and continues to be an increase in criminal activity. It is important, therefore, for everyone to be security conscious and make use of whatever layers of security they have or are able to put in place,” he said.