Sunday, August 11, 2013

Back to school for your security degree!

      Well it is back to school time and your house will find itself alone for much of the day. Kids are off to school and mom and dad are off to work. Even if one parent doesn't work outside the home this is the time of day they have to themselves to get stuff done. Then there are the extra-curricular and after school functions to take up evenings. Your house hates this time of year cause it can get kind of lonely and it feels vulnerable. Well it should feel vulnerable and it is. This is also the time of year when crooks come out to do their work in the daylight. And if Mom ( or Dad..The times they are a changing.) are at home alone they are vulnerable as well.
       We know the basics about how to secure your home in your absence. Lock the doors and windows and set the alarm when you leave. The times we live in have changed and the criminals after an easy payday have changed with them. It has been more than a few years since they developed the technology to open your garage door with their own remotes after intercepting your frequency when you use it. This means the only feasible way to secure the garage was to close the door then go back inside to manually lock it leaving your vehicle vulnerable unless you locked it while you went to lock the garage. And going through all this meant your garage opener wouldn't work when you came home pretty much making it obsolete so nobody did it and a lot of people got robbed as a consequence. Garage door opener manufacturers have since corrected this problem and I haven't heard of many problems lately.
       My point is that technology is rapidly evolving. You can use this to your advantage but so can crooks. However here are a few things you can to to give yourself and your family peace of mind. Some vehicles have keyless entry systems with a keypad that you can use to punch in a number or letter combination to gain entry. Well now they have deadbolt door lock systems that operate the same way. If you have kids that get home before you they just have to enter a code to gain access to the home and not carry a key which they WILL lose. They are products of the digital age anyhow and are much more likely to remember a pass code than they are to remember where they put their key. And that is if in their adolescent half awake state they remembered it in the first place. The beauty of this is you don't have to leave a spare key under a rock or mat since that's where they are always found. Every child I know of any means has a cell phone and if they forget the pass code you can always text it to them. If for some reason they can't then they can do like I had to do and sit on the porch and do their homework till you get home or instead of leaving a spare key with a trusted neighbor like old times you can leave the code. Since you have the ability to change the code whenever you wish it is like being able to re-key your lock without the benefit of a locksmith and they still have the old school key for the Luddites out there.
        Most home security systems have different levels of security packages available to you. If you have and use a home security system then you should fork out for a good one. You don't need some of the bells and whistles that come along now like being able to change your thermostat temp from your phone. That is why you got the programmable thermostat remember? What you need is protection for every entry in your home and a reliable monitoring service that will get emergency services to the house if there is an alarm. You should have fire and smoke detectors wired to this service so emergency services can be dispatched in your absence. You should also have an instant notification of any alerts so you can head off false alarms.
       These are just a few of the things to consider there are more. You can get a breakdown of costs and charges from your security system provider usually for free if you are considering an upgrade. The times they are a changing and you should change with them. Stay safe and secure the threat is real but don't quiver in your boots. Do the best you can and maintain adequate insurance. Obtaining the best in security will get you a break on the cost of the insurance.