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Make Your Home More Secure in 2024

As we leave 2023 behind its important to be aware of home security risks and take appropriate precautions to remain safe and secure in the coming year. In this latest post we consider home security trends for 2024 and the practical steps you can take to bolster your home security.

We all need to feel safe and secure in our homes. Not only must our homes keep us warm and protect us from the weather, they should also keep out intruders and protect our families and valuables.

Paying attention to home security is one of the best investments any of us can make and it doesn’t need to cost a fortune. Recognising risks and taking practical steps to mitigate them can often be achieved by simply taking a little time to focus on what your home needs and addressing some basic security improvements.

Top Home Security Trends for 2024

The tactics and techniques used by today’s criminals are continuously evolving which is a key reason why we all need to be aware of emerging trends. We’ve all seen reports of Cyber Attacks and how criminals are using sophisticated Artificial Intelligence systems to create deep fakes, clone peoples voices and identify viable targets for fraud and identity theft.

We all need to be aware of Cyber Security threats and take robust precautions to protect our accounts, passwords and devices. Taking care to make certain we don’t provide opportunities for criminals to access personal details that can then be used to steal our identities is increasingly vital.

Disinformation is another trend that’s increasing. We all need to be aware of fake news, hoaxes and organised misinformation campaigns that can be used to manipulate our behaviour. Misinformation is often most effective and deceptive when its mixed with true and verifiably accurate information. Criminals can, for example, create fake social media accounts that imitate the real accounts of workmates or family members. They then use these fake accounts to extort money. Another common example involves fake websites that are exact copies of real, trusted websites. When  unwary visitors attempt to log into their accounts they inadvertently provide criminals with their login details.

Criminals are also using intelligence gained from online resources to identify homes that are worth targeting. People love to post details of their activities on social media, highlighting their holidays and announcing when they are away from home. Experienced criminals have disclosed how they lookout for these posts to identify homes to target.

The current and ongoing decline in arrests and prosecutions is anticipated to drive continued escalation in crimes against people and properties. Police forces are suffering the loss of many experienced police officers resulting in slow police response times or, in some areas, no police attendance whatsoever, except for the most serious crimes. This is a key reason why we all need to take the security of ourselves and our homes seriously in 2024.

Home Security Recommendations for 2024

While its important to be aware of emerging trends there are many practical steps we can all take to strengthen our home security in 2024. Here are some useful recommendations.

Carry Out a Your Own Risk Assessment

Every home is different so it makes sense to take a few minutes to think about your home and where your home security is weak. Its worth considering all aspects of security, from the physical perimeter around your property to the various devices (mobile phones, tablets, TVs, computers) from which you and your family access your accounts.

A home security risk assessment doesn’t need to be an onerous task. It can often be achieved by discussing what’s needed with family members, walking around your home and inspecting locks, checking doors and windows and considering your outdoor spaces.

Strengthen Your Perimeter Security

Your physical home security starts at your perimeter, so its worth making certain this is as secure as possible. If you live in an apartment your home perimeter is likely to include shared spaces and facilities such as lifts and stairs. It should be ensured that these shared facilities and door entry systems are as secure as possible.

If your home has perimeter walls, fences, hedges or gateways its worth making certain these are all in a good state of repair and don’t make it easy for intruders to gain entry. Fix any aspects that are broken and look out for things like wheelie bins that criminals are known to use to climb over walls and fences. Criminals tend to favour properties where poor maintenance and low property security is apparent.

Ensure Doors and Windows are Secure

Criminals gain entry into our homes via our doors and windows which is why police forces throughout the UK encourage people to make certain their doors and windows are always closed and locked when away from home and at night time. Its worth checking all doors and windows to make sure the locks are as strong as possible and replace any that are worn or damaged.

And while checking the locks its worth looking at the hinges, door frames and window frames. Criminals don’t worry about the damage they cause to gain entry into a property and will often use crowbars, or even garden tools that have been left outdoors, to brutally lever a door or window open.

In some situations, such as shared apartment buildings, the installation of robust, metal security doors that fit over the existing main door, can significantly bolster door security.

long shed bar on door
A Shed Door Bar Boosts Shed Security

Make Certain Outbuildings and Contents are Secure

When checking the doors and windows around your home don’t overlook any outbuildings you might have such as sheds, garages or storage lockers. Criminals know they can often find tools and even ladders, stored in these outbuildings, which they then use to gain entry into the main home.

This is why its not only important to make sure outbuilding doors and windows are as secure as possible, its also important to make certain the valuable contents are also safe and secure. Valuables such as bicycles, motorbikes and lawnmowers should ideally be securely locked to immovable anchors wherever they are stored. And tools should be locked away inside secure storage containers.

Outbuilding door and window security can be strengthened by installing shed bars across the doors and window security bars. There are also some excellent, low cost, easily-installed devices that significantly strengthen garage door security.

garage door protection
Beef Up Your Garage Door Security

Enhance Your Outdoor Lighting

A very simple and low cost home security enhancement is to install motion triggered outdoor lighting. Criminals like to do what they do unseen and many ex-burglars have reported how they would move on to alternative targets if a property was well-lit. It`s also useful to identify any areas that may provide concealment due to overgrown vegetation and cut it back.

cctv warning signs
CCTV is a Powerful Criminal Deterrent

Install CCTV Cameras

CCTV cameras were once an expensive security option, only used by commercial properties or wealthy people. But there are now some very affordable and easily installed devices that anyone can use to beef up their home security. In combination with outdoor lighting and some appropriate warning signs, these cameras are a powerful deterrent.

Invest in a Home Security System

Another option to consider might be the installation of a home security system. Some of these include 24 hour monitoring and immediate response if an alarm is triggered. Its always important to select a reputable provider that has a great reputation and plenty of excellent customer reviews. Another useful tip is to look at the brand names on security alarms you see on properties in your area and perhaps speak to your neighbours to gain recommendations.

Protect Your Valuables

We’ve already mentioned the need to secure valuables, such as motorbikes and lawnmowers, even when stored inside your secure outbuildings. But we don’t all have lockable sheds or garages and we may have other valuables that need protection. Identifying your valuables is an important aspect of your home security risk assessment that will help determine the best ways to keep them safe and secure. And its always a good idea to take photographs of your valuables and store them securely.

Secure Your Home Wi-Fi Network

When reviewing your home security don’t overlook the security of your home wi-fi network. Many homes are increasingly using IoT (internet of things) connected smart devices such as video doorbells and baby monitors. Its important to make sure your wi-fi is protected with a strong password and WPA2 encryption is enabled.

Join or Create a Neighbourhood Watch Group

We’ve previously recommended joining or forming a Neighbourhood Watch group in your area. These groups help people by sharing information about suspicious activity, keeping a watchful eye over one another’s homes and taking practical steps to beef-up home security.

Verify Your Home Insurance

Another important aspect of your home security risk assessment is to make certain your home contents insurance provides the cover you need. Most reputable insurers also provide valuable home security guidance for their customers. And its important to make sure you have adequate cover for valuable items you take out of the home, such as cameras. Also, any items that have high value may need to be notified to your insurer and, as previously recommended, its a good idea to take photographs of your valuables. Its also important to know what’s not covered by your insurance - such as the contents of your freezer.

Wishing Everyone a Happy and Secure New Year

We hope these home security recommendations have helped you determine what you can do to beef-up your home security. And we`d like to wish everyone a happy and secure new year.

For more information on Make Your Home More Secure in 2024 talk to Insight Security

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