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Home Security & Beating the Burglar – Police Advice

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The first week of Home Security Month is well-timed as, sadly, there were multiple burglaries in the area around our office in the early hours of Monday morning. All week, police officers have been in and out of our office to look at footage from our multiple external CCTV cameras; which have provided them with vital evidence for their investigation.  

Naturally, we were very upset to hear that our neighbours had had their security compromised and valuables taken, and were also shocked to see that it had happened in such close proximity to a security company such as ourselves! Unfortunately though, this just goes to show the reality of the threat that is posed to all of our homes and businesses, regardless of location.

Of course, having spent so much time with police officers this week, we had to ask: what is the number one piece of security advice that they would give to a homeowner? 

The most frequent method of entry that we see in burglary cases is through a insecure or unlocked doors and windows; particularly secondary doors like on the side of the house, or patio and conservatory doors’ the PC tells us. ‘It’s hugely important to make sure that all windows and doors are always locked, whether you are in the house or not, and especially on a night time.

‘Basically’ he concludes, ‘if it isn’t being used, it should be locked.’

UPDATE: Police have identified 2 individuals (one male and one female) from the CCTV footage that they viewed! 

 

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National Home Security Month – Week 1: Be Aware Of Crime In Your Area

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The first of October marks the start of National Home Security Month, a nationwide initiative to raise awareness about the importance of keeping your home safe and secure. Week one is all about being aware of crime in your area, and knowing the risk posed to your property.

 This graph shows the number of burglaries reported in different areas of the North East since April 2014. Unfortunately, clearly evident that the risk of becoming part of these statistics is all too real.

National Home Security Month plays a crucial role in  ensuring that we properly secure our homes in time for the dark nights of the holiday season. So, over the next 5 weeks, we’ll be covering the following topics:

  •  Being Aware Of Crime In Our Area
  • Securing Doors & Windows
  • Protecting Valuables 
  • Outdoor Security 
  • Future Home Security
There’ll also be lots of hints, tips and much more to help you beat the burglar -so keep your eyes peeled!

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Burglars Using Social Media – How It Affects Your Home Security

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Modern day burglars are turning increasingly to social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter etc. in order to determine who, and when, to burglarise.  They use it to figure out your schedule and whereabouts, as well as to eye up your possessions, from a safe location.Thieves can also make use of Google Maps and Google Street-view to eye up likely-looking homes, and to plan escape routes.

Over 75% of convicted burglars believe that other burglars are using social media to choose targets.


HOW ARE THEY DOING IT?

An advanced search on a social media platform can be used to target people that are likely to be away from home…

A criminal can search for people ‘checking in’ at the local airport, and check the feed periodically to look for new victims. For this reason, you should be very careful about what you post if you are ‘checking in’ somewhere that might lead someone to believe that you are going away from home.

LOCATION DATA

 Similarly, when your location data is added to a post made  on social media, it shows that you are away from home and how far away you are. Burglars can use this to gauge how  long they have before they need to exit your property, potentially meaning that they will spend longer and be more thorough when burglarising your home, and are more likely to get away. 

With this in mind, please ensure that you are always conscious of sharing your location using social media, and that you take preventative measures to keep yourself and your property safe.

WHAT YOU CAN DO 

Being conscious of what information you share online is very important, and can stop you from becoming a target of many different types of crime. Take a look at our top tips for staying safe using social media:-

  • Make sure that your location is not shared automatically on Social Media sites.
  • Where possible, change your privacy settings so that only friends can see what you share.
  • Never accept a friend request from someone that you don’t know.
  • Do not share your address or contact information on social media.
  • Go through your profile and reverse stalk yourself. How much information could you obtain if you were a       burglar looking at your page? – Delete or make private anything that you wouldn’t like a stranger to see. 

SECURING YOUR PROPERTY

Don’t answer the door to strangers.
You should always check who is at the door before opening it. If you do not know the person, or you weren’t expecting them, don’t open up! They may try to talk their way into your home by lying about their identity, so always ask to see identification, too. Remember, any legitimate trades-person or other professional will have an ID card, and won’t be offended if you ask to see it!

Fit a visible intruder alarm.
A visible intruder alarm, even if it is just a dummy, acts as a very effective deterrent against burglars. It shows off very clearly that your home is fitted with security devices, and that it may be difficult and risky to burglarise. In fact, 90% of burglars say that they would completely avoid a home with an intruder alarm system.

Establish a bed-time security routine.
This should include ensuring that all doors and windows are locked, that valuables are put away, and that your alarm(s) are enabled. This may sound quite obvious, but a shocking 30% of burglars gain entry through an unlocked door.

Consider installing surveillance equipment
CCTV can be highly beneficial, acting as a criminal deterrent, but also capturing possibly vital evidence which could lead to the retrieval of your goods, and conviction of your intruder, should a they be successful in entering your home.

If you have questions about anything mentioned in this post, or if you would like more advice on keeping yourself and your property safe, please feel free to get in touch and we will help in any way we can. 

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Tyneside Security supply, install and maintain Security Systems in across the North East. This includes intruder alarms (burglar alarms), CCTV and fire alarms. We also install security lightingaccess control systems and much more. The first step is to organise a free survey with one of our Security Experts who will determine your exact requirements and give you a no-obligation quotation for your bespoke security package. The system will then be fitted by one of our experienced and highly reliable engineers, who will look after you and your equipment for years to come.
Tyneside Security operates right across the North East of England, including: Newcastle, Sunderland, Durham, Gateshead, North Tyneside, South Tyneside and Northumberland.

 

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Testimonial to Andrew Grainger – Newcastle Benfield Football Club

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This weekend we’d like to invite you to the testimonial football game for our Senior Surveyor, Andrew, who is celebrating 12 years of service to his team. Since day 1, Andrew has been extremely loyal to his club, Newcastle Benfield, having been invited to join other sides on lots of occasions but always choosing to stay put. For a player to stay with their team for so long is very uncommon, and exhibits commendable amounts of passion & dedication. 

Celebrating 12 years as ‘one of, if not the best goal keeper in the northern league’, we hope you will all join us at Sam Smith’s Park, Saturday 12th July at 3pm to support Andrew in his testimonial game against his former club, Darlington F.C. 

Andrew at Benfield Newcastle

Andrew’s Football Career

  • In his youth, Andrew played for the national England Schools’ football team.
  • For a portion of his career he played professional beach football for England’s national team.   
  • For a brief period, he kept goal for Welsh team, Barry Town United F.C, during which time they qualified for the Champions League. 

A Favourite Grainger Moment

In a recent blog post from a fan at For The Love of Football, we were able to recall one of Andrew’s famous moments: 

Benfield had been reduced to ten men early in the second half, he stopped the resultant penalty and subsequently brought off a string of fine saves, including one point-blank effort, which allowed his team-mates to see off an exasperated Spennymoor in extra time. That balmy spring evening at Dunston, when the Brooks Mileson Trophy was held aloft, owed everything to the man with the gloves.

-Well done & good luck, Andrew; we’re all very proud of you!

 

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CCTV Installation – What you need to know

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If you’re thinking about having a CCTV system installed, there are a few things that you may need to consider when making your decision. The type of system that is best for you will depend a lot on your individual needs, premises and budget, but, with all of the technical jargon that is often used, it can be difficult to make an informed choice. So, here’s what you need to know:

Cameras & Resolutions
CCTV systems can record in a certain amount of FPS (frames per second). This means that your footage can be shown to ‘flow’ in different ways. For example, when recording a low FPS, the footage will not show in ‘real time’ (the amount of FPS that the eye can see), meaning that it will jump from frame to frame, lowering the quality of the footage.

Recording can be set up in real time on certain systems, which is approximately 25fps, meaning that the ‘flow’ of the footage will appear the same speed as it would have done in real life

Similarly, CCTV cameras will record in different resolutions, for example, you can have SD (Standard Definition) or HD (High Definition), which relates to the quality of the image.

Images are made up of ‘pixels’ (essentially small coloured squares that group together to create the image), therefore, the more pixels that a camera can capture, the better quality the images will be.

These pixels are very small, so they are measured in ‘Megapixels’ (one megapixel is 1000000 pixels). In a standard definition CCTV camera there are 0.4 Megapixels, where as an HD camera captures over 2.1 Megapixels. This is the reason that the difference in image quality is so substantial.

 

 

 

DVRs

To store and stream footage your cameras will need to be connected to a DVR (Digital Video Recorder) or an NVR (Network Video Recorder), which will be the device through which you control your system. These come with a number of different recording formats, capacities and connectivities.

Your recordings can be stored either on an internal or external hard drive, on a USB storage device, or on a disk.

As well as this, your CCTV system can be either wireless (IP) or wired. Again, both will function in more or less the same way, but one may be more convenient for your requierements or the nature of your property.

Another good function of modern-day systems is remote viewing; this requires a broadband connection within the premises, but will enable you to access your closed circuit television system from any other place in the world (as long as you have internet access). Using a smart phone, tablet or computer you are able to log-in to your CCTV system, using your secure username and password, and remotely view your recording. Some appliances will even enable you to stream live footage directly to your computer, smart phone or tablet, which is ideal for people who have their own business, or for people who have more than one property (a holiday home for example).

Though some of these systems may sound expensive and complicated, now is a better time than ever to ask about upgrading your CCTV system. With the equipment prices at a record low, surveys 100% free of charge, and engineers on hand to help you 24/7, you’ve nothing to fear about taking the leap.

If you’d like more information about any of the products or functions discussed in this post, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.

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Tyneside Security supply, fit and maintain Security Systems in across the North East. This includes intruder alarms (burglar alarms), CCTV and fire alarms. We can also install security lightingaccess control systems and much more. The first step is to organise a free survey with one of our Security Experts who will determine your exact requirements and give you a no-obligation quotation for your bespoke security package. The system will then be fitted by one of our experienced and highly reliable engineers, who will look after your system for years to come.
Tyneside Security operates right across the North East of England including Newcastle, Sunderland, Durham, Gateshead, North Tyneside, South Tyneside and Northumberland.

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