For any homeowner victimized by a burglar, the crime, aside from being terrifying, was also likely a complete surprise. The family most probably returned to their house to find damage and disarray. In fact, it may take some time to move past the shock and itemize the stolen and damaged property. Though the break-in is unexpected for the residents, the crook was likely monitoring the location and waiting for the optimal time to strike. The signs are subtle, but there are a few ways to predict if a potential-burglar is watching a home.
If an old screen door was jimmied open or outright smashed, consider it a warning from a lurking criminal. Odds are, they’re testing to see if the home has a security system or nosy neighbours. A screeching alarm or responsive crowd means it’s not a good spot to rob.
It’s unlikely you’re on a first name basis with everyone on the block, but a suspicious character sticks out like a sore thumb. Dog walkers, joggers and moms with strollers all move with purpose and will likely greet any passersby. A prowler’s aim is to remain unseen so take note of anyone peering into homes or acting jumpy. Perps may also take photographs in order to study houses in greater detail while in private. Don’t be afraid to phone police and even snap your own pictures of the stranger. The same goes for idle cars parked outside your property. Take note of the license plate and voice suspicions by calling the non-emergency police line.
Is your porch light out, even though you just changed the bulb? This is also a sign your home is on a burglar’s list. A sneaky crook knows that it’s unlikely you’ll attend to a burnt-out light right away. They have loosened or swapped the bulb in order to use a shadowy cover while entering your home. This is especially noteworthy in the winter months when the sun sets in the early afternoon.
Today’s criminals love social media. Often, people post personal tidbits without strengthening their privacy settings, meaning anyone can view their photos and information. It’s common to publicize an upcoming jealousy-inducing vacation or celebrate a new house. A quick scan of any social platform shows endless strangers advertising a countdown to their holiday or a video tour of their new property. It may seem harmless but these posts provide a blueprint for criminals hoping to invade your house. Keep online security tight and be wary of a stranger’s sudden interest.
In nearly all cases, a burglar will tap on the front door to confirm that no one is home. Those with doorbell cameras can monitor repeat guests with no reason to visit. In fact, these homeowners have shared the images with police and the public, to warn others.
Stop criminals before they start! Visit www.alarmguardsecurity.ca or call 1-866-282-3331.