The Most Common Burglar Scams You Should Be Aware of

burglar scams

The concept of home safety involves knowing the risks and potential dangers in and around your house. It also includes education meant to keep your family and goods safe from burglaries.

Sadly, burglar scams seem to be more and more common in recent years. They are also known as door-to-door scams, but with proper education, almost anyone can avoid having their valuable goods stolen.

Read on to learn what are the most common scenarios and aspects you should watch out for if you want to avoid any potential burglar scams.

The ‘Knocker’ Scam

This one even made it to the news, last year. A wave of break-ins all across the UK, has determined the authorities to issue a warning.

The mechanism was quite intelligent, really. Conmen were posing as door-to-door sellers offering a range of cleaning products. As you may imagine, their purpose is to scout and check the house.

burglar scams

They would look for valuable possessions, if the house is empty during certain hours or if there are any security systems installed.

All this information was reported to other gang members who would raid the house sometime in the following weeks.

To stay away from these burglar scams, you should secure your front door with a door chain or simply refuse to open the door to the sellers or invite them in.

Fake Utility Workers

This scam involves two burglars. They would pose as utility workers telling you there’s an emergency they need to fix right away.

While one of them keeps you busy, the other goes around your house and steals whatever valuable possessions or money he can find.

The idea something may be wrong with one of your utilities is what makes this one of the most efficient burglar scams. To make things worse, if you refuse to let them in, they will threaten you with a fine.

Luckily, there is a simple method to avoid this scam: if the so-called utility workers haven’t reached out to you to schedule a check-up or maintenance fix, simply refuse. They don’t have the authority to fine you. Additionally, just threaten them you’ll call the Police and watch them leave in no time.

Burglar Scams which Use Fake Authority to Fool You

burglar scams

Another common situation is when someone posing as a census surveyor, shows up at your front door and starts asking detailed questions, such as:

  • Financial status
  • Your National Insurance number
  • Where do you work
  • If you have children or not.

This scam works because the con artist uses the fact we tend to trust people who are seen as an “official” or “expert.”

If it happens to you, the first thing you should do is ask for a badge number and paperwork which states they are who they claim to be.

In Conclusion

As you have read, burglar scams can be easily avoided. If you want to take it up a notch and secure your home with all-around smart security systems, you can do so. You’ll get more benefits than you expect and extra peace of mind.

Being informed is the first step towards keeping your home and family safe.

However, whenever one of the situations above happens, remember to always notice your local authorities. Any information you provide could help prevent something similar happening to anyone else.

At LockRite we took a keen interest in almost all aspects of home security. If you’re locked out, lost your keys or you’re finding it hard to lock your door, just get in touch with one of our professional locksmiths.

Top Smart Security Devices to Scare the Burglars Away in 2017

smart security

Gone are the days when you were on holiday, but also on pins and needles thinking about the safety of your household.

Now, we’ve got smart security tools to reinforce the safety measures already in place. 

The best aspect of these smart appliances is that they’re not hard to figure out. If you know how to handle a smartphone, you’ll sure manage an extra app connected to smart security gadgets.

Do you need more insight into what the market offers at the moment? We’ve got some recommendations gathered in three categories.

smart security

1. Smart Locks

When you’ve got one of these items on your door, you know home security is in good hands.

This year, the following smart door locks seem to be gaining experts’ recognition:

  • Kwikset 916 Z-Wave SmartCode Touchscreen Electronic Deadbolt: this sturdy device will lock automatically after 30 seconds, so it practically rules out the “Did I lock the door or not?” dilemma. You can re-key the code if needed, plus you can use the Home Connect technology to link the lock to other monitoring systems.
  • Schlage Connect BE469NX: offers 30 customised user codes and built-in movement sensors to alert you of any suspect activity outside.
  • August Smart Lock: gets you keyless access to your home and its performance is not affected by power outages.
  • Yale Smart Lock: a smart lock approved by Police Secured by Design.

To make sure they’re installed correctly, it’s worth calling your local locksmith for a helping hand. Many of them are specialising in dealing with smart locks malfunctions.

At Lockrite for instance, we’re providing assistance with the Yale Smart Locks, so feel free to contact us whenever you’re in two minds about what you should be doing.

2. Smart Light Bulbs

Among smart security items, these are considered the ‘cool’ additions to the smart devices family.

If you set your mind on getting one of these, durability is a key feature to have in mind. Here are a few conveniently priced items:

  • Philips Hue White: for roughly £12, it offers quite an impressively large range of features: geofencing, an estimated 23-year life span and integration with the main smart home kits (Amazon Alexa, Nest or IFTTT).
  • C by GE Starter Pack: as opposed to other smart bulbs, this one requires no hub to be installed, while also presenting an intuitive app.
  • GE Link Connected Web: attractively designed, this bulb will fit just nicely in your room.

3. Wireless Smart Security Cameras

Security cameras are getting increasingly sophisticated technology to enhance their performance.

That said, have a look at these surveillance experts:

  • Arlo Pro Security System: this wire-free surveillance pack offers free local cloud storage, motion-triggered and sound-activated sensors, within a reasonable price range.
  • Canary All-In-One Home Security Deviceenhanced night vision and air quality monitoring are the features setting it apart.
  • Smano UFO: low-profile design, perfect for keeping an eye on your indoor belongings due to its 360-degree coverage. 1080p quality and night vision for less than £150.

smart security 3

Weighing Your Options

It’s true, there are a lot of features to take into account.

Not to mention the budget – digital home security assets are a tad pricey if we compare them to classic solutions.

But whichever solution you pick, you need to keep in mind one aspect: home safety is the kind of investment we shouldn’t be afraid to make.

After all, staying open to various home security options will only make your house a hard nut to crack for burglars.

4 Smart Home Gadgets You’ll Most Likely Want in Your Home

smart home gadgets

From fridges to LED lights, everything is going smart these days!

The new generation of home technology brings forward a wide array of exciting new smart home gadgets meant to cleverly blend into your family’s lifestyle and make life easier.

So, if you want to tech up your home, you won’t be short on options.

Whether you want to improve the security of your home, save energy or automate bothersome chores, chances are there’s a gadget to help you.

4 Smart Home Gadgets likely to Earn a Spot on Your Wish List

1. Ring Video Doorbell

The Ring Video Doorbell is a gadget with multiple functions. In addition to serving as a high-tech looking doorbell, it also works as a:

  • Motion sensor. You get instant alerts via smartphone, tablet or PC when visitors press the doorbell or set off the built-in sensors.
  • Security camera. Fitted with infrared night vision, the camera allows you to see what’s going on around your home in HD video – day and night. In fact, you can get streaming video and audio and take a look at your property live, any time you want.
  • Two-way intercom. You can see, hear and speak to anyone at your door from your smartphone, tablet or PC. The gadget also has a noise cancellation feature meant to reduce unwanted ambient sounds.

The Ring Video Doorbell comes with a tool kit and installation for easy set-up. Another aspect worth mentioning is that it’s dual powered. It can run off the internal battery, or you can connect to your existing doorbell wiring.

Price: £160 on Amazon

smart home gadgets

2. Switchmate

Do you, or other family members, regularly forget to turn off all the lights when you leave home? If so, then this is one of the smart home gadgets worth the investment.

The main idea behind smart light switches, like Switchmate, is to give you control over your lights when you are not at home.

What makes Switchmate smart lighting solution stand out, is the fact that it uses powerful magnets to snap onto the screws of a standard toggle or rocker light switch.

Therefore, it doesn’t require any tools, wiring, or you hiring an electrician.

The whole installation process only takes a second or so. From then on, you can enjoy the benefits:

  • Switchmate automatically turns on lights when you come home or enter rooms.
  • Switchmate’s timers turns lights on/off automatically, even when you’re out.
  • You have remote control via Android/iPhone app.

Price£24 on Amazon

smart home gadgets

3. Cook4Me Connect Cooker

If cooking is not exactly your strong point, or if you just wish to save some time in the kitchen, Tefal’s smart slow cooker is a gadget you’ll want because:

  • You can get inspiration on what to cook via the Cook4Me App. You can then send the recipes directly to the cooker. Through an interactive LCD screen, you get tips on how to make the selected dish.
  • It can prepare meals for up to six people and keep the food warm until you’re ready to sit down and eat.

Fancy seeing the Cook4Me Connect in action to form a better idea of what it can do? Then you might want to take a look at the video below:

 Price: £219.99 on Amazon.

 

 

4. Keyless Smart Locks

Smart locks, such as Yale Digital Smart Locks, eliminate the need to carry a set of keys to your home anywhere you go. This makes them a more convenient alternative to traditional locks.

So, how do you lock and unlock your door if there’s no key? It’s simple! You can do so through:

  • A dedicated Yale Security app
  • A dedicated security device with built-in authentication
  • Or by typing in a unique code.

Smart locks have the advantage of giving you full control over who and when people have access to your home. You can give temporary codes to provide access while you’re away.

Find out more about the benefits of investing in a keyless smart lock here.

Heading Out?

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4 Tips for Improving Your Home Security This Spring

Spring is here, so chances are you’ve already started working on your spring cleaning list. 

However, you can do more than letting some fresh air in and tidying your property from top to bottom to improve your home this season.

Take advantage of the rising temperatures to increase your home security. Here are four effective tips which will help you better protect your family and your assets.

home security

1. Take an Inventory of Your Valuables

As the saying goes, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

As you go from one room to another to clean your home, also take some time to document any big-ticket items you have in your home.

  • Make copies of receipts and store them somewhere safe
  • Write down items’ serial numbers
  • Take digital photos, including close-ups which show the item in detail.

Why it important you do so? A home inventory can be of great use in case of an unfortunate event, such as a fire or a burglary.

You’ll be able to provide accurate documentation to your insurance company or police officers investigating your case.

2. Keep Your Home Security Wires out of Sight

When targeting a property, burglars will always try to take advantage of possible vulnerabilities within the security system. So paying attention to details is paramount.

If you have a home security system in place, it’s best to conceal all related wiring around the exterior of your property.

It’s an easy way to ensure burglars won’t be able to disable your system from the outside by cutting the wires.

home security

3. Use Lighting to Keep Thieves at Bay

It’s true that days are longer during spring as compared to the cold seasons. Still, installing security lights is something to consider if you want to add another layer of safety to your home.

  • Light up all entrances to your home at night. A brightly lit house is more likely to scare off burglars.
  • Use motion-based infrared detectors which activate automatically for the other areas surrounding your property.
  • Consider using light switch timers inside. These allow lighting to come on and off automatically and thus give the appearance someone is always home.

4. Invest in a Smart Lock

If you are tired of carrying your keys everywhere you go, this might be the best solution for you.

Smart locks provide a convenient, innovative, keyless way to secure your home. You have several options to open your door:

  • By inserting a PIN Code
  • Through a wireless remote control device (Remote Fob)
  • From your smartphone when connected to a smart home system.

By using these locks, you eliminate the risk of getting locked out or losing your keys. This makes them an excellent addition to your home security system.

And no matter what type of door you have, there’s a smart lock which is perfect for your home.

Are you interested in learning more about Yale Smart Security Range? All you have to do is submit an online inquiry as soon as possible and we’ll get back to you! No strings attached.

Now You Know

All these tips are easy to implement and will make your home less appealing to burglars.

Also, they come with the added benefit of providing much-needed peace of mind. This way, you will be able to enjoy this beautiful time of the year knowing your property and family are better protected.