The festive season is upon us. We are already in a weekly cycle of parties, awards shows, conferences and more parties.
Whilst this is the time to celebrate our achievements both as families and businesses, this is also party season for thieves and outlaws! We need to be careful to safeguard our possessions and here are just a few ways to do that at home.
Show discretion on social media – In this age of Facebook and Twitter, we’re used to broadcasting our every move to the masses. We check in to airports and hotels and restaurants, in essence surveilling ourselves for people with larcenous intent. But if you’re planning to be away from home and want it to stay protected, it’s best not to announce it online just for Likes and Retweets, in case a ‘friend of a friend’ is staking out potential targets for some Christmas shopping.
Be neighbourly – Talk to your neighbours and agree to watch out for each other’s homes. Stay-at-home parents can keep their eyes peeled for troubling activity by day, and night owls like myself can be alert after the sun goes down.
Increase your home security measures – Needless to say, the season to be jolly is not a good time to leave doors unlocked or security alarms turned off – even during the day. If you are planning to be away, get an insider’s advice and guidance on home security. Even the local hardware store will have a few tips and basic counter-measures for sale.
Be careful who you let into your home – Caterers and delivery people are amongst those you’ll be letting inside your home at Christmas time; it is impossible to vet each one, but be sure to deal only with reputable, traceable companies that will be responsible for their employees. Besides that, do not allow just anyone in the door. With so many braais and parties, you can’t keep track of everyone who shows up, but be sure that someone you trust can vouch for everyone you allow into your inner sanctum.
Keep your valuables out of sight – Speaking of holiday parties, they offer lots of opportunity to sticky-fingered guests. Again, you may trust your invited guests but cannot vouch for friends and dates they bring. If you are having people over, you may want to monitor the no-go zones of your home, and keep the shiniest stuff locked in a bedroom.
That is all for now, and it really is just common sense. Have a wonderful festive season, and CONSUMERIZIM wishes you a happy and safe holiday.