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‘Do one thing’ to beat the burglars

We're encouraging everyone to ‘do one thing’ to protect themselves from burglary, such as keeping valuables out of sight and locking doors and windows.

Around one third of burglaries in the force area are opportunistic, where the thief gains access via an unlocked door or open window.

These are some real life examples of 'walk-in' burglaries:

  • Woman reported the theft of her handbag from her kitchen. Access believed to have been gained via the back door as this was unlocked
  • The caller said she heard the front door open and close. Her purse and laptop are now gone
  • The caller said someone had entered the property and stolen cash and jewellery. He believed the thief gained access through a window which had been left slightly open.
  • While the caller was in the kitchen someone came in through the front door and took a set of keys which were on a hook by the door

We went out and about to see how many open windows – and doors – we could find and to provide crime prevention advice to householders. We discovered 18 easy break-ins in an afternoon.

Always keep doors locked and windows shut in unattended rooms.


Protecting your property

  • Keep doors locked at all times and keep windows shut in unattended rooms.
  • Remove keys from locked windows and keep them out of sight in a safe place.
  • Never leave valuables on display in your windows or near doors – especially those with cat flaps.
  • Keep car keys out of sight and preferably in a secure drawer or cupboard.
  • Don’t leave ladders or tools outside, or chain them up if you have to – they could be used to break into your property.
  • Download tracking software onto phones, laptops and any other gadgets you may have.
  • Secure your garden shed, especially if you keep valuable items stored inside.
  • Dispose of packaging for expensive items discreetly; don’t advertise what is in your house.
  • Register your valuables on Immobilise website , the free national property database that could help you get your valuables back if found.

These are a few simple steps to help protect your home. For more crime prevention advice see the burglary pages on our website.