Preventing Crime Is A Team Effort!
Here are some simple things you can do to make sure your home is secure!
Inside Your Home – Locks, Doors, & Windows
Use locks all the time. If there is no glass in your front door, install a peep-hold viewer and use it before opening the door to anyone. Only open doors to strangers when necessary, and demand identification from utility company and repair personnel before admitting them
- Install and use deadbolt locks on all doors.
- Secure sliding doors and windows with a wooden dowel. Make sure it is a tight fit.
- Lock all windows at night or when away from home.
- Hide valuables out of plain site and preferably not in the bedroom.
- Don’t open your door for strangers, talk to them through the door. If in doubt, call police.
Outside Your Home
There are a number of simple steps we all can take that will make the area just outside our home considerably safer. The simplest is to always make it appear that the home is occupied by security-minded people. Lawns should be neatly mowed at all times and shrubbery trimmed. Large bushes, especially if near doors and windows, give unwelcome visitors a place to hide from passersby and a way to mask their activities. Overgrown lawns, as well as accumulated mail, flyers and newspaper deliveries, by suggesting that homeowners may be away, invite burglary and vandalism.
Outdoor lights that come on at dusk are an excellent investment in home security. Intruders always prefer the concealment that darkness provides. Such lights range from wired systems operated by timers to simple cordless models powered by solar cells and operated by individual photocells that respond to ambient light. Some lights use passive infrared sensors that turn the light on when anyone approaches. Variable sensitivity allows these lights to be adjusted so that they are not activated by small animals. The more elaborate systems incorporate alarms that are triggered if anyone tampers with a light.
Fences and gates can provide a contribution to home security. Make sure fences are high enough and strong enough to serve as an effective deterrent and see that all gates are equipped with locks that are as secure as those on your front door. That means pin tumbler locks with at least five tumblers and a hardened steel deadbolt. Or, if you prefer, your gates can be equipped with suitable padlocks.
- Trim back shrubbery hiding doors or windows.
- Cut back tree limbs that a thief could climb to second floor.
- Make sure all porches, entrances, and yards are well lighted.
- Keep your garage closed.
- Do not hide keys in mail boxes, planters, or under doormats.
- Do not put personal identification on key rings.
- If keys are lost or stolen, change the locks immediately.
When Away or On Vacation
- Make your home appear occupied when you go out.
- Leave lights on and the radio playing.
- Use timers to turn inside lights on and off.
- Keep your garage door closed and locked.
- If you will be gone several days, arrange to have the mail and papers stopped or picked up.
- Complete a vacation notification at the police station.
- DO NOT post vacation plans on social media!
Safety on the Street
Security shouldn’t stop when you leave your home. There are steps you can take to increase your safety on the street as well. When walking outside, remember that thieves and muggers are looking for the greatest reward for the least effort. Don’t make yourself an attractive target by flashing cash or valuables in public.
Appearances Count. If you must walk down a dark, deserted street, don’t display a $5,000 watch on your wrist or expensive jewelry around your neck. Do walk with a quick, confident step and be aware of your surroundings. On city streets, walk on the curb-side of the sidewalk to avoid becoming a target for someone waiting in an alley or doorway.
Identity Theft Precautions
- Shred all documents containing personal information.
- Don’t carry your Social Security card or write the number on checks. Resist providing it to others unless absolutely necessary or ask to use another identifier.
- Don’t give out personal information to anyone unless you are certain you know who you are dealing with.
- Never click on links in unsolicited emails. Use firewalls, anti-spyware, and anti-virus software to protect your computer.
- If you make a purchase through an online business that contacted you without your request you can assume that your information has been compromised.
- Don’t use easy or obvious passwords. Change them regularly.
- Keep your personal information in a secure place, especially if you have roommates, employ outside help, or are having work done in your home.
- Check your credit report at least annually for free at annualcreditreport.com
Report Suspicious Persons or Activity
- Livonia residents, call Livonia Police Department (734) 466-2470 extension 0 to report anything suspicious in the neighborhood. Call 9-1-1 for serious matters.
- Your help is critical in preventing crime.