Home invasion: Simple steps for greater protection
As recently reported by Allianz, the term 'home invasion' often means different things depending on where it is being used. The media, police, state government departments and even victims all have varied descriptions of the act. In fact, there is no legal definition of 'home invasion'
- Check all locks on your windows, doors and security screens. Even if it's hot outside or you're in the garden, keep them locked;
- Install smoke alarms and get them serviced regularly, ensuring they meet Australian standards;
- Use timers on your lights, radio and TV to switch on and off at the same time, regardless of whether you are home or not, and close blinds and curtains so people can't peer in;
- Ensure exterior entrances are well-lighted and not surrounded by hedges so intruders can't ambush you;
- Keep minimum cash at home;
- Keep keys, wallets and handbags out of sight;
- Tidy away garden tools such as shovels, pick axes and ladders that thieves could use to break in;
- Don't keep a firearm for protection as it could be used against you;
- Consider adopting a dog; a barking pet can deter burglars;
- Get to know your neighbours, watch out for each other and alert the police if strangers lurk around;
- Don't open the door immediately when you hear a knock. Talk through a locked safety screen and get identification from tradespeople and salespeople;
- Try not to give out personal details such as income, marital status, working hours or number of residents to a phone caller; and
- If you still feel unsafe, consider further measures such as installing a panic/safe room, solid core or metal doors, window security or a monitored home alarm or CCTV system.
If someone does invade your home when you are inside, police advise you to stay in a safe place and put a physical barrier between yourself and the intruder. Call triple zero (000) if you can. If you are outside your home, but hear or see someone unexpected inside, don't go in and call 000