Burglar? Don't Bother

  • 28th February 2022

Neighbourhood Police in South Belfast have launched a creative new anti-burglary initiative to help residents make their homes more secure and protect their property.

The ‘Burglar? Don’t Bother’ campaign will see officers visit homes across South Belfast, encouraging residents to lock up, store valuables securely and carry out traceable property marking.

Police will also work with local pawn broking businesses to raise awareness of attempts to sell on stolen property, encouraging them to look for property that is marked and to report any suspicious activity.

‘Burglar? Don’t Bother’ stickers will be shared with home owners who can display them in their home to show that they are security aware and have taken progressive steps to protect their property.

Advice on protecting your home

Burglars are opportunistic and will look for easy ways to enter your home and steal your property.

We can make our homes a less attractive option for criminals by taking a few simple precautions:

  • Ensure doors and windows are in a good state of repair and good quality locks or bolts are fitted to all external doors.
  • Ensure locks on all windows and doors are in good working order and are locked when your home is unoccupied. Any broken/defective locks should be repaired by a registered locksmith.
  • If at home and at the rear of the property, ensure the front door is locked and vice versa; this eliminates the chance of someone gaining entry through an unlocked door in an opportunist burglary. If you are upstairs ensure all downstairs doors are locked.
  • Remove keys from windows and doors and put them in a safe place when you leave the house. Never leave keys in the door or hanging on a wall nearby a window.
  • Consider installing CCTV, there are cost effective options which work via wi-fi and notify you via an app on your smart phone or tablet. Signage will need to be erected and you will need to comply with CCTV regulations. The following provide guidance on the purchase and the use of CCTV www.gov.uk and www.ico.gov.uk.
  • If you have an intruder alarm, make sure it’s set. If you don’t have one, consider having an approved alarm system installed.
  • Make use of timer or smart plugs/bulbs with lamps and radios to make your house appear occupied.
  • Don’t leave valuable items such as laptops and jewellery in view of windows. Lock valuable items away in a ground anchored safe if available or you could consider leaving important documents and valuable items with other family members if away from home.
  • Property marking is an excellent option for any valuable items such as laptops, TV’s and phones. Take photos and record descriptions of any jewellery or valuable collectables or antiques.
  • Make sure you have up-to-date contents and buildings insurance – and remember, most insurance policies only cover burglary claims on an unoccupied home if there are signs of forced entry, so double-check all doors and windows are closed and locked.
  • If away for a prolonged period such as a holiday ensure any regular deliveries are cancelled or suspended.
  • Ask a trusted neighbour, friend or family member to call at your property to collect mail and to open / close curtains.
  • Never post statuses or comment on social media about being out of the property or going on holiday – or indeed whilst you are away on holiday. You wouldn’t display a sign in your window advertising that you’re going on holiday, so don’t advertise it online - if you must post status updates, ensure that privacy settings are set so only trusted family and friends can view updates.

Securing your garden

  • Make sure all access points are secured such as gates and activate any external security lighting, dusk to dawn lighting or bulbs are ideal.
  • Ensure gardening equipment, tools and ladders are securely stored. Don’t leave them lying around in your garden as they could aid burglars.
  • Ensure sheds and outbuildings are locked and secured. Use good quality locks on garages and sheds (ensure screws on latches and hinges cannot be undone easily) and where possible, alarmed.

If you live in South Belfast and would like to obtain a ‘Burglar? Don’t Bother’ sticker for your home, please contact the enquiry office at Lisburn Road Police Station by phoning 101 or calling in person.

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