Worried about a break-in? Here are some security tips
With many businesses being ordered to close by the provincial government temporarily, owners may feel more vulnerable to break-ins.
Here's a list put together by Durham Regional Police with steps businesses can take to improve security and deter criminal activity:
- Lighting: keep exterior entry points (including windows) well-lit. Lighting inside should be dimmer than outside but still lit enough to help with security monitoring.
- Valuables: remove window and store-front displays from view. Remove all cash from the till and leave an empty cash tray on the counter, in plain view.
- Alarm: contact your alarm company to be sure all information is up to date, and your system is functional. You should consider using a system that can continually be monitored online.
- Signage: post signage in doors and windows to indicate that the premises are being monitored and no money was left inside.
- Entry Points: be sure all entrances, including windows and doors, are properly secured. Consider reinforcing any glass or latches to increase their integrity. Also, ensure no ladders or roof access ladders are extended/unlocked or are readily available, and all gates and fences are locked and secured.
- Windows: Blinds and curtains should be drawn so that the public can be alerted if someone is inside but not open so that the public can see fully inside the building.
- Clean Exterior: Remove anything outside of a property that could aid a criminal to break in, including bricks, metal poles or other discarded materials. Ensure all exterior garbage cans/chairs and newspaper boxes are removed from entrance points or near windows.
- Construction Sites: Lock all gates and fences. Lock all machinery and vehicle cabs. Don't leave any keys onsite or within vehicles. All tools and smaller machinery should be locked in a building or storage container. Park a large vehicle up close to doors if possible to prevent the doors from being opened. Record any VIN/ serial numbers on items and secure offsite.
The public is encouraged to report any suspicious activity they see to police. If you witness a crime in progress, including break-ins to closed businesses, call 9-1-1 immediately.