Home Security Guidelines

Did you know that 35% of burglaries are committed in homes that aren’t locked?  Secure your home and improve the safety of your local neighbourhood.

The West Australian Police Force suggest using the following guide to conduct your own home security audit. The more ‘yes’ boxes you can tick, the harder you make it for burglars.

  • Is your house number clearly visible from the street?
  • Are your trees and shrubs trimmed so it’s hard for burglars to hide?
  • Do you have solid core doors?
  • Do you have locks and deadbolts or deadlocks fitted?
  • Do you have security screens on doors and windows?
  • Does your door have a peephole?
  • Do your windows have key-locks or security devices?
  • Does your house have an automatic light timer or sensor lights?
  • Do you leave lights on when you go out at night?
  • Are the entrances to your home well lit?
  • Is your home fitted with an alarm that’s well maintained?
  • Is the garage or shed kept locked?
  • Are your tools and ladders stored away?
  • Is the meter box locked?
  • Are your contents and valuables engraved or marked for easy identification?
  • Have you recorded the serial numbers?
  • Do you have window stickers letting burglars know you have an alarm and your property is marked?
  • Is there a phone extension in the bedroom with emergency numbers handy?
  • Do you have a dog?
  • Have you joined Neighbourhood Watch?

There are is a huge range of other resources provided by the West Australian Police that are available online at


Identify your security risks

Most crimes against businesses are not planned – more often than not they occur when someone sees an opportunity.

Conduct a thorough risk assessment. Take a really good look at your business and check where there are opportunities for crime, e.g. unsecured cash tills or anti-social behaviour outside your building.

Draw up a checklist of potential risks and ask yourself some questions. For example:

    • Do all your staff follow agreed opening and closing procedures for the business?
    • Do you monitor visitors arriving at and leaving your premises?
    • Are tools, ladders and valuables securely locked away?
    • Do you keep cash, valuables or medication the premises over night?
    • Do you follow a procedure for closing and locking doors, windows and skylight?

Answering these questions will help you decide which security measures your business needs. Knowing the particular risks your business faces means any action you take will be more effective.


Protecting your business premises

Put yourself in the shoes of a criminal and think how you would break into your premises. What are the weak spots in your security?

  • Securely lock all entrances and exits when nobody is on the premises. Do not leave keys lying around.
  • Lock valuables in a secure safe.
  • Strengthen doors and windows. The more barriers you create, the more you can delay and discourage  burglars.
  • Install a security alarm with several Personal Infra Red (PIR) detectors and use it properly.
  • Consider installing a CCTV (Closed-Circuit Television) installed to prevent or identify crime.
  • Keep windows free from displays and posters so staff can see anyone loitering and who’s entering the premises.
  • Keep valuables away from windows to prevent ‘smash and grab’ attacks.
  • Install and use good lighting and locking gates. Also consider places around your business where someone might hide, such as in trees, shrubbery, stairwells and alleyways.
  • Quickly repair any damage to your premises – replace signs, repair equipment, paint over graffiti. Consider using landscaping designs (such as prickly shrubs or closely planted hedges, lighting or fences) to put off criminals.
  • Arrange a routine security patrol, security patrols have been shown to be one of the most effective deterrent to both criminal and anti-social behaviours.
  • Arrange for a professional security company to attend any alarms as soon as they are activated.  This ensures both your safety and a quick response.

Securing your business

As an business, you have a responsibility to keep the workplace as safe as possible. You also need to know that your staff and customers are honest and safe.

  • Think about ways to prevent crime – failure to take good precautions invites crime into business.
  • Take action in more than one way – there is no silver bullet that will prevent all crimes.
  • Get your staff involved in your actions, this shows them that you are serious about crime prevention, and builds up a crime prevention culture within your business.
  • Work with others to make sure your efforts have the best effects.

Preventing theft:

  • Always check references for new staff and  request  police clearances for new staff members.
  • Clearly document and adhere to clear policies about employee theft.
  • Train staff to identify thieves and to watch out for suspicious behaviour.
  • Greet every person who enters the business in a friendly way.
  • Make sure all monies coming in and going out are dealt with by different employees.
  • Randomly check deliveries, both to your business and to your customers.
  • Monitor the petty cash fund.
  • Question excessive amounts of voids, credits, or damage claims.
  • Never accept photocopies of invoices, delivery notes, etc.
  • Investigate unusual occurrences such as missing documents or unexplained absences during the working day.
  • Tell your staff to pay only for goods received and remind them not to pay for goods that have not been ordered, even if an invoice is provided.
  • Change locks and computer passwords periodically.
  • As a last resort, if you do discover theft in your business, consider prosecution – experts have found that it works as a strong deterrent to others.
  • Always remember that your safety is always more important than your property.