Halloween season is upon us.
On 31 October, homes across the UK will be gearing up for a night of trick or treat.
But with Halloween being one of the biggest nights for burglaries, make sure you’re home security aware, whether you’re staying at home, ready to dish out the sweets or heading for a scary night out.
Awareness of home security is already raised at this time of year with October being National Home Security Month, and the nights drawing in for the autumn / winter season.
Burglary rates can increase due to unoccupied homes becoming easier to spot after dark. Whether you plan to be out or at home on Halloween night, there are many things you can do to help ensure your home stays secure, and those joining the celebrations know to respect your privacy.
Here are some tips on what you can do, no matter if you’re staying in or heading out between those hours.
If you’re staying at home…
Keep It Locked
Keep your front door locked (as you should do every evening.) It might be slightly annoying to unlock the door every time you greet friendly ghouls with your sweet bowl, but this will prevent any opportunist thief (who could even be posing as a trick or treater) from attempting to steal from you.
Check who’s at the door
Before opening your door, if you can discreetly check who’s there through a smart video doorbell, spy hole or upstairs window, you’ll have a better idea of whether it’s a trick or treater, expected or unwelcome visitor.
Light up the darkness
If you have outdoor security lighting and motion sensors installed at your home, make sure they’re working and switched on. This way, you can ensure any visitors are put under the spotlight whilst they’re on your property. As well as providing better visibility of outside areas, opportunists prefer to work in the dark where they can be unnoticed, so light will distract them.
Make Visitors Aware
Propping a pumpkin outside your front door home is code for ‘”Trick or treaters welcome!” Alternatively, you might also want to display a notice outside your home to politely tell trick or treaters that you’re not taking part.
If you’re going to be out…
Use your burglar alarm
If you’re planning to be out, off trick or treating yourself, even for a short while, make sure that your home burglar system is fully-set. Lock all of your doors and windows
For increased security, check before you go out that all of your doors and windows are locked. It only takes the slightest opening for an opportunist to accept the (unintentional) invitation to enter your home.
Make your home look occupied
Don’t let burglars know your home is unoccupied by leaving it in the dark. Leave at least a couple of lights on at home. Trick or treaters may come calling, but if they don’t get a response, they should move on pretty quickly. Lights, television and radio can all be operated by time switches to provide the impression that someone is home. Be careful with social media –
Check your privacy settings
Whenever you post a Halloween selfie or check-in to a specific trick or treat location, do you know exactly who can see your updates? What you share on social media channels can reach a wide audience, so putting information about your whereabouts or possessions online has the potential to leave your home exposed. Check your privacy settings and ensure only people you trust have access to your updates.
Consider other home security products
Home CCTV systems, visual verification and security lighting products offer more ways to deter thieves and keep your home secure. In addition to a burglar alarm system, these products come together to provide a strong defence for your home to protect what’s precious.