Todd’s Note: As more and more people start to “feel” the negative economic downturn, I believe that we are going to see an increase in crime. Awareness and action based on that awareness is important for those of us who want to protect or family and our home. This guest post, by Naomi Broderick, points out that we should stay vigilant as crooks become more hi-tech.
One of the more popular strategies in preparing for emergencies is concentrating on sustainable living practices and “holding the fort” at home. While others might prefer to chart escape plans and stock up on survival rations or MREs, many preppers realize that few accommodations can compensate for the security and peace of mind provided by a sustainable, well-guarded shelter. Even if abandoning your home becomes necessary, leaving your abandoned property for looters can be less than ideal if your prep includes a plan on returning home.
Naturally, investing in home security systems and installing other security upgrades to detect looters and home invaders are smart decisions in bolstering your odds against many of the threats of emergency situations. As a prepper author promoting ADT security in Phoenix, Arizona, I realize that a home security system can be one of many powerful tools in keeping a home safe.
However, it would be naïve to underestimate the ingenuity of crooks. With many methods of exploiting elements of home security readily available on the internet, any common crook can easily equip themselves to subvert security measures easily if homeowners do not design their systems to prevent it. Here are a few more popular ways that crooks are exploiting security systems, and how you can prepare in order to prevent it from happening to your property.
The advent of the information highway has made the easy, instantaneous lock-picking technique of lock-bumping widespread knowledge. In fact, the decades-old method only gained traction as recently as the 2000’s, as media attention on the problem that it presents ironically contributed to higher awareness among criminals. In this method, an individual uses a special bump key which vibrates the pins of the lock to unlock. And this special key, like the technique itself, is easily and legally acquired online through many retailers.
Many security companies offer “bump-proof” locks, but even these models can be easily bypassed with repeated bumps. In truth, very few key-pin locks are really foolproof to bumping. The only surefire way to prevent this extremely popular home invasion strategy is to reinforce or replace traditional key-pin locks with additional locks. Any lock which doesn’t use springs in their mechanism is absolutely bump-proof, which makes combination and disc tumbler locks great choices. The increasing affordability of electronic locks, like biometric readers or pass-code enabled systems, are great additions to avoid bumping.
It’s no great secret that cameras are prone to exploitation and acts of vandalism. This is why many models come with anti-vandalism features, such as shatter-resistant elements and tamper-proof mounting. Even though cameras are more durable these days, they can still be bypassed if they aren’t placed strategically and with adequate coverage of your property. However, there are many more ways that crooks can compromise the effectiveness of your security cameras. For example, in the September of 2013, the Federal Trade Commission took action against a security camera provider for lax security practices which made hacking into live security feeds and posting them on the internet extremely easy for hackers.
In order to make your surveillance a more reliable aspect of your preps, there are some simple steps to take into consideration:
- Make sure your equipment comes with anti-theft and vandalism features, and keep your camera in an out-of-reach distance from foot traffic
- Place cameras in a manner which avoids allowing undetected entry to your house – including entry-level windows and side entrances
- Consider installing auxiliary cameras in stealthier locations in the case that your primary unit fails or lacks adequate coverage
- If you have a wireless camera system, never activate Universal Plug and Play – this networking feature exposes you to a far greater risk of being hacked
- Install a back-up generator specifically for your outdoors lighting and security equipment if possible
These are just two critical ways that your home security can be compromised. When criminals become more informed and creative as technology becomes more advanced, it becomes increasingly important to our preps to do our part in minimizing the odds that these elements of our security are not easily exploited.
What other parts of your security do you believe are at risk of damage or exploitation? What would you recommend on deterring home invasion?
About the author: Naomi Broderick is one part stay-at-home mother, one part prepper, and one part author with Protect Your Home. She enjoys reaching out to other preppers to share her advice and gain wisdom from others on improving her own preps.
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