Common myths dispelled!
7Arrows Security representatives often get asked the common question of the increase in crime over the December period. Historically this has been known as months whereby crimes such as home break ins and hijackings are on the increase. However recent research dispels this as a myth.
Recent studies over our extensive networks and suburbs under our supervision does not show a pattern of increase in crime over the holiday period. Instead crimes of such seem to happen year-round. Following our research and data collected we can confirm the following trends:
We evaluated 151 crimes reported to us within the Sandton Precinct and established the following:
· Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays experienced the highest levels of crime. The highest levels of incidents took place during weekdays.
· Saturday experienced a high level of burglary incidents. Most of these incidents took place between 09h00 and 16h00 when people are out.
· The highest crime levels took place during the midyear months – May to August. October was also a very busy month. December and January experienced the lowest levels of crime.
· The highest levels of driveway crimes took place between 11h00 and 17h00
· The highest levels of house robberies took place 11h00 and 21h00
· 61% of burglaries took place during daylight hours.
Some common myths:
· Criminals do their “Christmas shopping” in December. It appears that this takes place before the holiday season.
· Burglaries happen at night. This is a natural to fear the dark. However, burglars would rather be in your home when you are out, thus Saturdays and weekday office hours are seen to be more popular for such.
In particular our research shows an increase in hijackings, follow home crimes and home break ins. These incidents have happened across all 7Arrows areas which include JHB North, Sandton, Kensington, Fourways etc. Crime trends in many of our neighbourhoods seem to mirror each other, criminals count on opportunity to strike.
Criminal Opportunity Theory tells us that criminals use opportunity, whether through legitimate means or otherwise to gain what they desire. Residents need to be aware that criminals count on them to create the opportunities that they so desperately need in order to take advantage and get what they want.
Research conducted by the Institute of security studies shows us that hijackings for example had a huge dip in 2013 but have skyrocketed in the following years. This seems to be an epidemic in all areas in Johannesburg spiking again this year.
Again the only way to prevent a hijacking is to remain vigilant at all times, criminals count on your distraction to attack. Make sure to put down your cell phone when leaving and returning home and if you feel uneasy never stop driving. Call in all suspicious activity.
While shopping centre and driveway robbery are extremely difficult to prevent, burglary and home invasions can be countered with a review of one’s homes use of physical and electronic security. Homeowners need to take a walk through their properties with the eye of a criminal says Jason Mordecai MD of 7Arrows Security.
Criminals are clued up on security devices used to prevent them from entering your homes which calls for cleverly planned security systems that criminals cannot break through. “Make sure all barriers set up are strategically installed by a professional security company”. says Mordecai . “A beam placed in the incorrect location will prove to be ineffective and therefore a futile effort to keep criminals out, all security measures around your home need to be installed correctly and by someone who knows how criminals gain access into your properties.” he says.
Security checks to take note of:
· The gate is always the weakest link in the security chain; special measures need to be taken to prevent the gate from being derailed. Make sure your gate motor has an anti-theft bracket installed and that it is always closed.
· Light up your homes, and make sure you don’t provide any hiding spots for criminals to use to their advantage.
· Review your alarm system and check that blind spots in your electronic network are covered.
· Foliage that can interfere with systems should be trimmed.
· Windows and doors should also be looked over and checked to see that they close properly and are secured with burglar bars/security gates.
· The alarm system should be tested with your response company. It is also important to check that your alarm system’s battery is in good working order, and that your response company receives an alert if the battery is failing. This is because burglars will trip the power in the house in the hope of wearing down the alarm battery.
· Call your security company and ask them to do a walk through of your properties and assess any security weak points for potential criminals to use to their benefit.
· When leaving and returning home make sure to keep your car in a position whereby if need be you are not blocked in and can make an easy getaway.
· Before exiting your vehicle once in your driveway keep your engine on and do not unlock your doors until the gate is fully closed.
· Vigilance remains your number one priority.
A security system is only as good as the user. Alarms need to be activated every time you leave your home or go to bed, domestic workers and house sitters looking after properties need to be briefed in the workings of the alarm system and on all security protocols. Do not ignore suspicious behaviour, if something or someone does not seem right to you, trust your instincts and report it to your security company. For any suspicious activity please call it in – If you see it, say it 0861 727 769