Helpful hints for prevention
- Burglary is the unlawful entry of a structure to commit a
felony or a theft. A person can be convicted of burglary even
if nothing was actually stolen.
- A burglary occurs approximately every 15 seconds in the United
- On average, a burglary results in a dollar loss of about $1,600.
- About 30 percent of all burglaries are classified as "unlawful
entry," meaning the burglar was able to gain entry without
using force — often through an unlocked door or window.
- Nearly 66 percent of all burglaries are residential, and of
those, 62 percent occur during the daytime. Most burglaries
occur between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., when no one is likely to be
- Renters are more likely to be the victims of property crime
- Only 13 percent of reported burglaries are solved, or "cleared,"
by the police.
- Only about 15 percent of property stolen in burglaries is
recovered by the police.
- Nearly 85 percent of all burglaries occur in large metropolitan
- Almost half of the nation's reported burglaries occur in the
South: 45 percent, as opposed to the Northeast's 11, the Midwest's
20 and the West's 24.
- The highest percentage of burglaries occur during the summer
months of July and August, when many people are away from their
homes on vacation, or have left windows open for ventilation.
- Arrest records reported to the FBI indicate that approximately
70 percent of all burglary arrestees are white and 86 percent
- About 30 percent of private homes have security systems. Homes
without security systems are two to three times more likely
to be broken into.
- Having photos, videos and serial numbers of your valuables
can be extremely helpful in identifying your stolen goods.
- Contact the manufacturers of some of your valuables, as they
may have advice or additional products on how to better secure
and protect them from thieves.
- Get your driver's license number (NOT
your Social Security number) engraved on any expensive electronic
equipment. Doing so can not only assist in their return, but
can actually dissuade theft: Marked property is difficult to
sell or pawn.
- Invisible-ink pens can be used to identify your property.
Again, using your driver's license number as an I.D., a simple
ultraviolet light on stolen property will show the police who
the real owner is.
- Photocopy receipts of expensive items and store them in a
safe place so you have proof of purchase for insurance reasons.
- Use A Bolted Down Safe that cannot be carried out of the house
to store important documents, information and valuables. It's
a simple investment that will protect vital possessions.
- Shredding documents with personal information (such as bank
and credit-card statements or anything with a Social Security
number on it) will keep a burglar or someone looking through
your trash from finding your information and assuming your identity.
- Credit cards are immediate cash — keep records of what
cards you have, always keep them signed on the back and any
surplus cards should be kept in a Safe.
- Keep equipment for expensive hobbies (boats, Jet Skis, golf
clubs, etc.) covered up — even better, keep them locked
up out of sight.
- What you think is well hidden is nearly always easy pickings
for burglars, so lock things up instead of keeping them in "clever"
hiding places like the freezer, the bag of sugar or the cookie
- Leaving empty boxes from your new computer, DVD player or
TV on the curb for trash pickup advertises that you have things
worth stealing in your home. Break boxes down or cut them up
to conceal what they contained.
- A computer lock is an easy and inexpensive way to protect
valuable personal or customer information. Computers are expensive
items to replace. Keep track of all your computers through a
- Blank CDs are a cheap and easy way to back up information
on your computer in case it's stolen. Be sure to store your
CDs in a bolted down safe.
- If you keep your jewelery in the house, lock your jewelry
and other valuables in a bolted-down floor safe.
* Keep information about your safe-deposit box separate from
any personal identification documents such as passports or Social
Security cards. If these documents are stolen, you could suffer
further losses if someone is able to use them to gain access
to your safe-deposit box.
- Secure furs like you would any other valuable: Keep them in
a closet with a dead bolt, and be sure to monogram or write
your name on the skin of your fur to aid identification and
recovery in case it is stolen.
- Be sure to lock your bikes and four-wheelers to a bolted-down
- For pricey heirlooms, get serious about securing them. First,
invest in an appraiser to have a firm dollar figure on your
valuables. Then photograph, catalogue and put them on your homeowner's
policy. So if a heist ever goes down, you're covered. Then lock
them in a bolted down safe.
- An art-security hanger makes a painting difficult to remove
from the wall by "locking" it in place. In addition,
a product like "DataDots" records identification information
on an adhesive the size of a grain of sand, so your artwork
is traceable if stolen.