Prioritise security and ensure ‘Santa Claus is the only person sneaking into your home this Christmas’
Suffolk households have been urged to prioritise security in the festive period as burglars take advantage of abundance of expensive gifts.
The advice is the latest message from Suffolk Constabulary’s #SaferChristmas campaign and aims to ensure “Santa Claus is the only person sneaking into your home this Christmas”.
Statistically, the worst day for break-ins during the festive season are December 29 and 30 when people return to work or go out for the start of season sales.
Other peaks days for break-ins include New Year’s Day as so many people are out of the house and January 3 which coincides with the return to normal routine.
Nearly a fifth of burglaries in December and January are because homes are left insecure – an open or unlocked window or door.
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Det Supt Andy Smith said: “We recommend people use the ‘close it, lock it, check it’ system for home security, double checking that windows and doors are properly secured to help prevent the risk of burglary.
“A light on can also be a simple tactic to deter a thief when no one’s home and closing the curtains can definitely help. Consider installing alarm systems, CCTV as well as doorbell camera technology to further secure your home.
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“It’s also best to avoid displaying Christmas presents under the tree until the last possible moment and think carefully about where to put valuables. Ideally, don’t group them together as it will make ‘shopping’ easy for a burglar.”
Suffolk police are also reminding people not to advertise their homes are empty by “checking in” to locations or publicising they are on holiday.
Det Supt Smith added: “I would also encourage people to keep an eye on their neighbours’ homes, particularly when you know they are on holiday or elderly neighbours who may be vulnerable to bogus callers or rogue traders. Setting up or joining a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme is an excellent way to work together to keep your community safe.”
Online shoppers are also being advised to be alert for fraudulent activity, such as fake offers advertised on social media.
However, it’s important to be aware that thieves don’t just target us personally at home. As more of us are electing to buy gifts online in an effort to avoid the crowds on the High Street, Suffolk Police is also urging online shoppers to be on alert for fraudulent activity.
“If something seems too good to be true, it probably is,” Det Supt Smith added.
Suffolk police works with Suffolk County Council’s Trading Standards officers to identify scams, rogue traders and unsafe products.
Visit Join the Fight for information.
Visit Suffolk police’s website for more crime prevention advice.
Top 10 items taken by burglars
6. Games consoles
8. Car keys
9. Bank cards