House burglaries, theft of, and from cars in people’s driveways, porch pirates are all things we have to deal with today and of course even more so leading up to the Christmas Holidays.
What I really want to share with you today is a few habits you need to change.
I recommend you grab a pen and paper and make yourself a list of things to do and list of things not to do.
Don’t be all over social media telling people that you are going away on holiday unless you have other people who will be occupying your home. You might be keeping up with the Jones’ by talking about your upcoming vacation on the beach or in the snow, or sharing selfies from the pool. But think of all those items you bought to keep up with the Jones’ that might have been burgled before you get back.
Here’s a big one. Please watch this video. It is less than two minutes long, but it could save you thousands of dollars. Using cheap or free apps, cyber criminals armed with just a cellphone, can identify every bluetooth device in your house, car or bach that is turned on. Often, like the iPad and TV in the image above, they will even describe themselves.
When you are driving to your holiday destination and get out of your car for lunch or a coffee, and leave mobiles, tablets, bluetooth speakers, navigation devices in the car, as this video demonstrates, they can be located within 2-3 seconds by someone using one of these apps, complete with a compass and distance setting, so they don’t have to waste valuable time rummaging around to find your devices. They make a few quick dollars and your holiday has just gotten off to a bad start. You were probably still feeling some lingering stress after the long year at work and the traffic.
As I explain in the video, they can even create a list showing locations on a map that they can sell to other people, for example criminals who steal to order. They might not care about your old 42″ plasma screen, but your QLED 85″ TV that you bought on Black Friday is easily worth a quick thousand dollars to a motivated meth head.
One of the best investments I made this year was a WiFi security camera. Installation and setup took me about 20 minutes, including the mobile app. It has Infrared so it has great night vision as well as during the day.
I bought a very large SanDisk Micro SD card cheap from Aliexpress. It worked fine, but I decided for peace of mind to go with the cloud which is also very cheap and means that if someone was clever enough to steal the memory card, I would still have a great 1080p video of them doing it. It’s simple and low cost.
My D-link captures video, sound, pans and zooms, all from my phone and I can even talk to the person in front of the camera, for example if it was a courier or perhaps a friend coming to visit. Alternatively I could tell someone that isn’t supposed to be there that I have sent their image to the Police already and they might want to sit and wait for them.
Of course the camera sends alerts to my iPhone based on rules that I set up, and every time an event is triggered I can watch the camera live or the recording it just made. I can download the video to my phone, email it or capture photos from it in an instant.
Then of course there are your neighbors. If you are not in a neighborhood watch group, you probably should be. Let them know when you are going to be coming and going, if you have people they don’t know staying on your property and share information so that you all know as much as you need to, in order to keep an eye on each other’s properties.
I could talk about loads of devices and technology, but if you follow the advice on the video and the few things I’ve suggested here, you will be well on your way to making someone else’s property more attractive to the bottom dwellers who want to make your life a misery.
So what is the best home security for 2020? It’s mostly about common sense.
Do you have any tips you’d like to share?