- 1 Exterior of the house
- 1.0.1 Does the house have a closed perimeter?
- 1.0.3 Does the post office box or gate intercom at the front of the house identify residents?
- 1.0.4 Do you have perimeter lighting?
- 1.0.5 Does the house have an attached garage?
- 1.0.6 Do all perimeter doors provide protection from intruders?
- 1.0.7 Do you have trees and shrubs that are overgrown to the point of blocking an easy view from the inside?
- 1.0.8 Does the house have outbuildings (independent garage, pool house, storage rooms) located within the property?
- 1.0.9 Are your locks adequate?
- 1.0.10 Are glass windows or sliding doors blocked?
- 3 Interior of the house
- 4 Using technology to increase the efficiency of your home’s home security
- 5 Social Media and the Internet
- 6 Additional items for your home security
Home security check.
Do you think the security of your home is up to par?
Take a look at the checklist and check how the security of your home holds.
The home security checklist you are about to read is designed to identify security risks and provide people with basic personal safety recommendations that can be used to protect yourself, your family, and your home.
This checklist has been created to provide you with a detailed and actionable list of home security checks.
Surely there is a lot of difference between:
- a detached house exposed on all sides,
- a terraced house with common parts,
- a condominium,
Contextualize based on your home the list to check where some things may not be common, but analyze the point anyway.
Do not postpone this verification activity, and become aware of the current condition and what you need to do to make your home safer.
Use this tool as a “walkthrough” with which you can assess weaknesses or vulnerabilities in home security.
Exterior of the house
Does the house have a closed perimeter?
Does the house have a closed perimeter or can anyone walk in your yard or in your garden maybe pretending to go and retrieve the dog or the ball?
If you have the possibility, fencing the perimeter is an excellent solution to prevent an attacker from approaching even to study the type of locks, windows, etc. that you have installed.
The search by thieves and criminals to recover information on the weak points of your home is essential to prepare, to understand what tools to bring with you to be able to enter your home without a key.
Remember that those who carry out thefts study the locks and installation methods of the products on the market to find the fastest and most noisy method to get around it, and create the tools to do so.
There is nothing that cannot be opened but the purpose is to delay and with other tools signal the presence in time and allow you to get safe and call the forces of order, as well as where it is allowed to take your weapon, sound the alarms, activate the fog / smoke generator (If the thief does not see, he cannot steal!), or other, etc.
Does the post office box or gate intercom at the front of the house identify residents?
This is easy but it’s also important not to make it easy for someone to find which apartment is yours.
Ps. This does not apply to the detached house and townhouses.
Unfortunately, often in the districts and condominiums it is easy to identify the apartments but it is a legacy of past years where the number of thefts and the type of crime was very different.
Additional consideration is needed with phone booths in apartment complexes or gated communities, make sure it doesn’t display the home number or phone number that will ring.
If you can’t get around the box that shows the number you’re calling, use a Google Voice number or other means of call forwarding.
Do you have perimeter lighting?
This is an important aspect.
It is important that if you have a yard, then at night it is illuminated completely without shadows.
Not only does the light create a “wall”, but it allows you to easily detect the outside without having to use a light that identifies where you are to any intruders.
Remember this because it is important: if there is more light outside than inside, you cannot see inside, so also the directions of the lights from the house to the outside.
Today the cost of energy is not to be underestimated but if you have a photovoltaic system you can take advantage of this energy management to power the night lights, today there are also presence sensors that illuminate if necessary, but I repeat that an important external light allows you not to have a clear view of the house at night while you are inside.
The same goes for you, if there is more light inside than outside, you cannot see outside.
Install lights with motion detector for indoor and outdoor protection.
Lights with external motion detector can be installed to automatically turn on the interior lights even when you are not there, giving the impression that there is someone in the house or that he has entered a room that you have chosen while you are elsewhere to observe, this always while the external lights come on.
Do not constantly use outdoor lights for this reason motion detectors are important because they warn you, unless it is only the light in front of the entrance.
Always leaving the lights on makes it look like you left the lights on and went out but it won’t alert yourself or the neighbors when movement is detected in the yard.
Does the house have an attached garage?
Whenever possible, always park vehicles in the garage.
Do not go from the outside to go into the garage, always enter the vehicle from inside the garage if this is possible.
Always keep garage doors closed and locked when not in use.
To limit your exposure outside the vehicle during dark hours, install an automatic garage door opener and make sure all family members know how to manually operate the garage door in an emergency.
The opening of the garage must be automatic!
Make sure that the door from the garage to the interior door of the main house itself is a solid-core door with a deadbolt locker.
If there is a vehicle parked outside, make sure the area is well lit.
If you want to have even more security install a monitor in the garage that shows what an outdoor camera sees outside the garage, today it is even easier with the applications that you can see with smartphones.
This way when you are in or out of your car you can see what awaits you.
Also, if you can, always park the vehicle with your nose towards the exit.
Do all perimeter doors provide protection from intruders?
This is crucial.
All perimeter doors must be made of solid wood or steel with a deadbolt lock, in addition to any other locking device.
The door must have a peephole or security camera system installed to view any visitors before opening the door and granting access to the house.
No glass should be on the door that can be broken and get in.
It is important that a three-inch screw counterplate is installed in all entrance doors but if they are armored doors it is much better.
Be sure to fix the sliding glass doors with pins to prevent both horizontal and vertical movement, especially when the house is left empty for a long period of time.
Sliding glass doors must be hung so that the sliding door is mounted inside.
The door should be reinforced with a “jimmy-proof” bar to prevent forced entry.
Sliding glass doors are the weakest link in most homes, either give up and take the French windows or they must be armored and put alarm sensors on them.
Reinsert or replace the locks if keys are lost or stolen, or if you move to a previously occupied residence.
Be sure to follow a strict check of the keys you use to access the house.
Never leave keys outside under rocks or hidden in a fake brick, etc. Do not leave them in the car when you go to the gym, supermarket, etc.
Do you have trees and shrubs that are overgrown to the point of blocking an easy view from the inside?
Trim or remove trees that may allow access to upstairs windows or balconies, and make sure trees or shrubs don’t block a clear view of entrances and windows from the street.
When selecting shrubs or plants for the perimeter try to find shrubs with thorns.
Does the house have outbuildings (independent garage, pool house, storage rooms) located within the property?
In this case, all other compartments must also be attached to the main security system and install quality commercial locks on all building doors.
Are your locks adequate?
Use ONLY quality commercial locks.
No Kwikset, Schlage, Masterlock, etc.
High-security locks will defeat almost all picking and drilling attempts.
Make the job as difficult as possible.
Another security update for your home is to make sure that the deadbolts that are on glass doors do not have a knob but instead require a key on both sides.
Soon I will make you some posts about lock piking also called non-destructive bypass and while analyzing your locks think as if you yourself are trying to break in.
Are glass windows or sliding doors blocked?
Windows are one of the easiest ways to enter a house for a burglar.
Not only are they often forgotten open and left unlocked, but they are easy to break to access the house.
A significant number of break-ins occur through windows.
Make sure yours doesn’t make the thief’s life easier.
Interior of the house
Do all windows have proper covers?
Windows should be equipped with interior blinds, curtains, curtains or blinds to prevent someone from seeing inside.
Pay attention to the color of the tent that if it is great for the day but becomes useless at night.
Look for curtains or shutters that can be closed in the evening.
Does the house have louvered windows?
Louvered windows should be replaced with solid windows made of tempered or unbreakable material.
Is it possible to access the interior of the house through windows or other openings from the second floor or from the roof?
All second-floor windows and roof skylights must be protected to prevent access by intruders who may use exhaust pipes and other means to access the roof or upper floors.
Is the external door leading from the basement to the upper floor made of solid wood and equipped with a deadbolt lock?
As with other exterior doors in the house, it is important that the basement door is made of solid wood or steel frame and equipped with a quality deadbolt lock to prevent intruders from entering.
Consider that it is the door that allows you to enter the house and must be considered in the same way as the main door.
Do you have smoke/heat detectors installed throughout your home?
Smoke detectors and heat detectors should be installed throughout the home, spotting a short or fire right away can make a profound difference.
Detectors should be wired into the electrical system of the house with a backup battery in case of a power outage.
Furthermore, as you can guess, it is essential to install and maintain fire extinguishers for all uses throughout the house, especially in the kitchen and in the laboratory / cellar where you do the DIY work.
Establish and periodically test fire evacuation procedures for all family members.
Does the house have an intruder alarm system?
Consider installing an intruder alarm system in your home connected to your local police department or a certified central alarm monitoring organization.
An anti-theft device, commonly called alarm, is an electronic system used for theft protection and as an anti-intrusion device into real estate.
They can use sensors connected by wires, i.e. wired, and anti-theft systems not connected with wires, but equipped with wireless transmission.
It is essential to educate all family members on how the system works.
Consider installing a local enunciation system or siren.
The advantage of a siren is to alert neighbors to alert the authorities, in case the direct-connected alarm lines are compromised.
As an additional security measure, alarm systems can be customized to provide fire monitoring, medical alerting and closed-circuit television (CCTV) surveillance of the exterior of the home.
Most burglar alarms are equipped with PIR (Passive Infrared Radiation) or PIR+MW (Passive Infrared Radiation + MicroWave) sensors, devices that use infrared electromagnetic waves, possibly together with microwaves, to detect movement in the monitored space.
Infrared signals changes in heat: when a person moves in the controlled area, PIR sensors detect the change in heat due to the presence and movement of the body.
Even moving slowly, to try to evade motion detection, you cannot escape a PIR sensor, as the emission of body heat is detected.
Even the slightest change in speed or a slipping foot can cause the heat to vary.
Usually the alarms are equipped with remote controls or a numeric keypad installed inside the protected room, with which the owner can control every single function.
The system must receive from the installer a programming that detects an intruder provides for the activation of visual alarm devices, audible and a possible call to alert the owner or a private security company or the police.
Usually the systems are programmed so that between the moment in which an alarm cause is detected and the moment in which the alarm is triggered, a few tens of seconds pass; This expedient ensures that the owner, upon returning, has time to disarm the system without causing a false alarm and, at the same time, that the person who commits the break-in is unable to complete it before the alarm goes off.
There may also be sensors called “perimeter”.
Such sensors are installed on doors and windows, regardless of the type of frame, to protect its opening.
The most common are the “magnetic” ones, composed of an element fixed on the fixed structure of the frame that contains a small switch enclosed in a glass ampoule, called in jargon “reed”, and a part on the mobile part of the frame, which contains a magnet.
Contrary to what one might think, the safety of this simple detection system is given by the accuracy of the magnetic field that is created between the two components, which if modified or disturbed, generally by the opening of the window, generates an alarm.
There are many burglar alarms and their cost basically depends not only on the intelligence of the security system but also on the sound pressure of the acoustic alarm, very commonly measured in decibels.
Common components of an alarm system
- Electronic control unit
- Keypad – To set and enter the security code to arm or disarm the anti-theft system;
- Remote Control – To turn the anti-theft system on or off;
- Activation and deactivation keypads;
- Static electronic keys or RFID;
- PIR (motion) sensors
- Outdoor sensors;
- Magnetic sensors (for some types of anti-theft);
- Sensors to integrate protection (smoke, gas, flooding, etc.);
- Alarm for housing.
- Video surveillance cameras with built-in motion detector (also wi-fi that connect to the internet)
The peripherals and the control panel
The control panel is the heart and brain of the system: when it receives a signal indicating an alarm condition, it activates the power supply to the horns and the possible telephone dialer to alert the owner or a private security company or the police forces.
Sensors are the elements that control all events that happen in the protected area.
When the power plant is active (armed), if a sensor notices an abnormal condition, it sends an alarm signal to the control panel, which in turn implements all necessary countermeasures.
Sirens are very important output devices and fundamental for the operation of the alarm system.
Their task is to signal the alarm condition to the surrounding areas through high-power acoustic warning and flashing light, favoring the intervention of a surveillance patrol or a police patrol car.
Usually the sirens must be protected by tear, anti-opening, antifoam and anti-perforation.
The telephone dialer, where present, is used to signal an alarm condition to the owner of the house and possibly to the police, via call via PSTN landline or GSM mobile networks.
To prevent possible tampering by an intruder, control panels, peripherals (sensors) and sirens must be protected with the aid of:
Tamper anti-tampering: this is a simple button located on the back of the control unit (the part to be fixed to the wall). This button is always pressed in contact with the wall; If someone tries to tear the control unit from the wall the button is released by starting the sirens and telephone signals. Two buttons protect the control panel: a front one protects it from unauthorized opening and a rear one protects it from tearing from the wall.
Optical sensors: in sirens the probability of tampering is high. The siren, in addition to having a rear and a front tamper, is also protected by optical sensors that detect the introduction of polyurethane foam into the siren, triggering the sound and telephone alarm (polyurethane is a foam that could be used to silence the siren).
Anti-puncture system: it simply consists in protecting the siren cone and the circuits with a steel box or a plastic mask that is crossed by circuits that if they are physically interrupted by a hole generate an alarm.
Anti-slip system: Motion sensors could be circumvented by moving by crawling on the ground instead of walking normally. To avoid this, a double detection lens is used, one in front (which normally captures movements in the area) and one below that captures the so-called “swiping”.
Anti-jamming sensor: it is a system used in radio systems to prevent the disturbance of the working frequency through a jammer. If the control unit detects interference, the alarm is triggered.
Anti-masking system: one way to interrupt the infrared beam of PIR (volumetric sensors) would be to spray lacquer or paint on the lens, so as to obscure it. This sensor identifies unauthorized cover by paint or lacquer and triggers an alarm.
Do you have a fog safety system?
Fog alarms have been conceived and have been used in recent years as solutions to prevent theft or robbery.
They consist of a unit connected to the control panel like all other peripherals, which, when an alarm cause is detected, instead of emitting a sound or in addition to it, very quickly sprays a special non-toxic product neither for animals nor for humans, contained in one or more tanks (which must be periodically replaced or toped up), going to emit a fog that makes it totally impossible for criminals to see inside the room.
It is not possible to circumvent this protection in any way, since the fog can only be eliminated by ventilating the room, an operation that requires being able to see inside it.
Since most thefts do not last more than three minutes and the average intervention time of the police is far higher, the installation of a fog system guarantees total protection in the first 20 minutes from attempted theft.
There are also foggy alarms in their own right, not connected to a centralized system, which are self-installing and controlled remotely.
Do you have designated areas or panic room?
Especially for people with children, it’s important to have designated areas where you can stop and alert the police while defending your family.
Accommodation for the night you are on the same floor helps.
Being able to hold an area and challenge any intruders is crucial to making good decisions under pressure.
As we often discuss, find a method to positively identify and challenge a person who has entered your home.
If your attitude is “if you enter MY house, you are dead”, these are the phrases you hear in bars, but the reality is quite different for most people and also because we do not want your new home to become a prison cell for the next 5-15 years with large locks closed only from the outside because you committed an act of voluntary murder.
Walk around the house and identify bottlenecks, such as hallways and stairs.
Plan how you will get to your children if you have them and be ready with a plan to identify and challenge someone if they come in.
These things happen quickly, so try, it is not a game and in that moment of stress it is difficult to think so some actions must happen automatically and only if necessary adapt and change the established plan.
The Panic Room, on the other hand, is the life-saving room, the place where, in addition to keeping our most precious material goods, we can take refuge in case of theft or aggression, criminal acts and even terrorist attacks or natural disasters.
The Panic Room is made of bulletproof sheet metal walls, equipped with external communication systems and survival kits.
It is a room integrated into the house with retractable furnishing technologies through walls and ‘mobile’ furnishings that blend in with the furnishings of the house.
The intruder cannot see the room while the occupant is able to monitor through hidden monitors and cameras what is happening in the house and inform the police of the intrusion.
Inside the Panic room it is possible to install, according to the needs of the customer, all the home automation devices that have the purpose of managing all the supervision tools of the home environments.
Thanks to special devices you can activate different devices (such as cameras, detection sensors and alarms) and at the same time simulate the presence of people inside the house by turning on TV, lighting and more to dissuade any malicious people.
Using technology to increase the efficiency of your home’s home security
There are plenty of options out there to help you protect your home, automate procedures, and keep an eye on things.
However, there are a few things to pay attention to when introducing technology.
CCTV systems are incredible not only for catching criminals, but also for deterring them.
Here are some things to avoid:
- Choose quality cameras with high resolution. Avoid cheap camera systems at all costs. They don’t even work remotely reliably, and you’ll be replacing them within a few years. In addition, you usually can not make a face over 5 meters during the day. Do not buy them on Chinese sites.
- Do not install cameras under 3.5/4 meters (12/13 feet). Keep them out of a person’s reach with a cane. Make sure they are rated for the environment they are in and not close to anything anyone can climb to access them.
- Avoid wireless camera systems. Not only are they not reliable, but they also pose a risk when used against you. Your Wi-Fi camera is as powerful as your network and Wi-Fi isn’t secure, and neither are your cameras and can provide backdoors to your network.
Social Media and the Internet
If life has taught you anything, it’s that most of the information comes from someone who speaks with his own mouth about what he has.
Especially if it is something in the house that a thief has an interest in or knows that it has a high exchange value of black market money such as valuable electronics, weapons, cash, precious metals, art, watches and jewelry.
It also means drugs, so be careful what company you frequent.
Keep a habit in general, never talk about your wealth.
But today there is version 2.0 of this version that are internet, social media, etc. where you publish photos, holidays, parties, geolocated locations, etc. that can contain important information.
Do you post your well-worn watches, weapons, money, cars or gadgets on social media?
If so, know that you are broadcasting that you have stuff worth stealing.
Set your profiles as private but it is not always enough if you do not know who your friends are or easily give a friend to a “beautiful girl”.
Be an information gaver, not an information provider.
Do you keep personal information off the Internet?
Nowadays it is difficult, but as much as possible, not to take pictures with your house in the background.
Do not miss your address, the license plate, where you usually go on certain days, the gym you attend, etc.
Don’t tag your location or provide details about the city where you live.
This is a big issue that most of us don’t really have to worry about right now.
However, in some countries (especially Latin American countries) kidnapping the children of people considered wealthy is an important practice for criminals.
- Don’t post photos of your children publicly.
- Don’t talk about it on social media or other places online.
- Don’t complain to anyone about your wife.
Consider how changes in society could make you vulnerable if a massive economic collapse were to begin;
Would you like this information to be available to anyone with an internet connection?? And consider that those who are used to certain types of crime are used to finding information.
Additional items for your home security
There are a few other things that are immediately actionable, and as part of your home security checklist, consider the following as well:
A fire plan
Do you have fire extinguishers classified for accessible structures and kitchens on every floor of your home?
Do you have a plan to get out of the house?
If you have children, do they know how to escape in case of fire?
How about if there is bad weather; Do you have a plan for that?
A loading plan for your vehicles
If you don’t already have one, consider a whiteboard with a checklist to hang next to whatever your vehicle is “to get started.”
On it, you have responsibilities for each member of your family and for the items they should grab and load.
A great way to exercise is to go camping and involve your family in the load of your vehicle.
After a few attempts, you will know how to pack your bags so that the vehicle resembles our “equipment lines”; The objects that are most easily accessible are the most necessary in emergencies of the type
I on the roads, while items to help you deal with Type II (such as local fires or floods) may remain in the vehicle.
Remember that flooding rivers should not be ruined. If you don’t know depth and speed, don’t mess around
Keep vehicles ready
Don’t let your vehicle drop below half a full tank of fuel.
Keep spare fuel available.
Keep your rig in good working order and mechanically as close to 100% possible in an entropic universe.
Keep spark plugs (or glow plugs), straps, oil and oil filters, transmission fluid, coolant, and consumables handy.
Keep a maintenance schedule and keep it up. Your vehicle is part of your castle
A plan for home invasions
Create secure points and positions from which you have all the advantages as a defender.
Consider placing flood lights that can hide your location and blind invaders inside your home in select locations.
Have a plan to contact the police, but remember not to discuss the details of what happened with them.
Remember that the problems of excessive penetration of your firearms can be widely addressed by establishing these points.
Try to make sure that your “suspension” points create fields of fire that do not cause collateral damage.
Take time to walk around your home and see where you stand when it comes to home security.
Observe your home from the outside, observe it from the inside, analyze your behaviors when you are away from home, etc.
You may be surprised to discover the vulnerability of your home.
Print this article and treat it like a checklist!
Street Fight Mentality