Smart Security: Tools and Tips to Protect your Property & Outsmart Burglars

Whether you are out of the house running errands for the day, at work during business hours, out of town for the weekend or even gone on an extended vacation, the simple truth is that you cannot be at home all the time and you eventually have to walk out your door for one reason or another.

Fortunately, with some of the latest technological advancements in home security systems, it is now possible to keep a watchful eye on your property at all times even when you are not physically present.

But since much of the heavy lifting is done by technology, it can be easy to overlook the non-auto-pilot basics of home safety and security. So by remembering the value of good, old fashioned common sense, you can incorporate some time-honored techniques for outsmarting would-be burglars and avoid becoming the next statistic.

Here are some aspects to consider no matter your security needs or current situation.

Home-Based Basics

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For greater peace of mind while you are at home or away, wireless security cameras can enhance a new or existing home security system with relative ease.

SecurityMan 4 CH (2) Wireless Security System

Complete with a 7 inch LCD/SD DVR and Night Vision/Audio, this DIY digital wireless system from SecurityMan will run you in the $300 range.

Including two weatherproof (IP54) CMOS color digital wireless cameras appropriate for indoor and outdoor mounts, this digital video recording system is less complicated to operate and is more affordable than a standard/full version DVR. Improvements over traditional analog technology include:

  • Increased range of transmission (up to 200 ft. between walls and a clear line of sight of up to 490 ft.)
  • Secure signal
  • Virtually interference-free from analog devices (Wi-Fi routers, Bluetooth devices, cordless telephones, cell phones and even microwaves)

This system is extendable by up to two additional wireless cameras (for a total of four), and allows for up to 65 hours of recorded video for a single camera or 130 hours with four cameras using a 32GB SD card (not included). Finally, these cameras are equipped with infrared filters and IR LEDs for night vision (30 ft. B/W).

But even a top-of-the-line security system is hindered by our own human shortcomings, so to round out your safety, consider the following.

Beat those Burglars

As any fan of nature programs can attest, the predatory lions don’t aim for the strongest gazelle or a wildebeest in the middle of the mass or otherwise protected by the herd. They usually seek out stragglers and pick off the weak ones drawing attention on the outskirts of the group: simply put, the quickest lunch comes from the meal that requires the least amount of work.

Apply that same logic to the predatory burglars among the human ranks and avoid pulling focus away from the rest of the pack in order to give yourself your best shot at survival. In short, if you don’t want to become a victim, don’t be a target!

Although there is no sure-fire way to ensure you are never burglarized, there are things you can do to stick out less and send a clear message to a thief that making a meal out of your place may require too much work on their part.

  • Post signs in highly-visible areas indicating that you have the property under video surveillance. Words and pictures are best since they convey the message whether your burglar was at the top of his reform school class or completely illiterate.
  • Do not leave your garage door open. Burglars know that many people rarely lock the doors leading into the house from the garage and if the garage door itself is open, there’s at least a 50/50 shot that the house door is open/unlocked as well.
  • Don’t allow boxes to pile up after a purchase. Not only are you announcing to the entire world that you have expensive items inside, but you’re also letting them know you’re not smart enough to keep it to yourself.

What additional ways have you used technology to improve the security of your home or business or to otherwise outsmart burglars?

Editor’s Note: Angelo DiGangi, a Home Depot sales associate in the Chicago area, is a regular contributor on home security ideas for Home Depot. Angelo writes often for the Home Depot website, including tips to keep your front door, windows and garage door secure while you are away from your home.

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