Halloween Safety Tips by Admin Halloween can be a burglars “prospecting paradise” they are able to walk neighborhoods freely, in disguise while taking note of vulnerable homes…especially those with easy access to valuables. Here are CallTeks Security’s Top 10 Halloween Security Tips: 10. Always keep curtains closed, garage doors shut, and all doors and windows closed and locked. We even recommend sitting on the patio (preferably with a partner) while handing out treats so people cannot see into your home and valuables inside. If you have an enclosed garage, parking your vehicle(s) inside prevents vandalism and potential car theft “scoping”. 9.Never be alone! This is true no matter what the age or circumstance, especially on Halloween. Small children should always be accompanied by an adult, young adults should stay in groups, and even while home giving out treats it is advisable to do so in groups. If not possible, always keep a charged phone is close proximity. Did you know that all CallTeks Security systems can be enhanced with remote panic buttons and all panels have 2 way voice direct to help? 8. Keep the Lights ON!!! We know Halloween is about dark creepy corners, but there is a reason all horror movies are dark… bad people hide in the shadows. CallTeks Security systems can be enhanced with light automation that can randomize lighting schedules. If you don’t have a home security and automation system with these features, there are more economic options: Manual dial programmed light timers are inexpensive and can even be found at most hardware stores for around $5. Just remember to randomize your times about once a week, professional criminals like those in the movie, Home Alone, often recognize repetitive lighting schedules. Secondly, motion triggered lights are highly effective at detouring burglars, pranksters, and even animals that may want to nibble on pumpkin decorations. Many people turn off their lights to avoid Trick or Treat visitors all together, this can increase home intrusions. It is a better idea to keep ligts and instead post a simple note on the door that says “Do not disturb” or “We have no treats.” Most trick or treat visitors can read or are (hopefully) with a guardian that can. A good rule of thumb to teach your little goblins is to not approach homes without a pumpkin or other type of holiday décor visible. 7. Bring your pumpkins inside! Most trick or treaters are off the streets by 9:00pm. CallTeks Security recommends bringing your pumpkins inside to detour mischievous tricksters who may be wanting to do some pumpkin smashing. This can cause property damage and also alert burglars that a home is loosely unaware of close proximity movement and/or noises. 6. Don’t Answer Your Door! Set a time, perhaps 9:00 pm, and do not answer the door. It is never safe to answer your door to strangers late at night. 5. Be Nice, leave a Note. Yes, leave your lights on, yes don’t answer the door… but don’t make it seem like you are not there. Examples are: “Please do not disturb.” “No treats after 9pm”. 4. Do not use Real Candles! May it be in pumpkins, or as candlestick decorations, DO NOT use real flames? (That is so 90’s anyway.) Use glow sticks or battery flicker candles, both can be purchased at most dollar stores and are much safer. Speaking of flames… when was the last time you checked your smoke detector batteries??? CallTeks Security can also integrate automation smoke and CO detectors in to your home security systems that automatically shows you battery life, provides self tests, and send you alerts like battery reminders… Did you know most CO detectors go bad after 5 years???” Fall is a great time for CallTeks Security to come out and do a FREE in home security life and safety evaluation and we can help you update and integrate those items. 3. HAVE A PLAN Prior Proper Planning is always key whether it be for property or personal protection. Make sure you map out where your kids will be trick or treating, set a specific time they must be home as well as set frequent check in times. For small children, make sure they are visible with reflective accessories and glow sticks. Establish a secret safe word. Unfortunately, sometimes separation happens. Use a pen to write your name and number on their forearm (so it does not wash off), teach them to show an adult so you can be contacted. 2. Record Activity Security Cameras are the best way to capture activity both to be proactive, have visible surveillance, and if later necessary time stamped evidence of vandalism, burglary or suspicious behavior. CallTeks Security is proud to offer the best home surveillance packages in the valley. We have both wired and wireless options, Infrared Night Vision cameras, 360 degree cameras, equipped with mobile viewing and both local and cloud storage options. Call us today for a free evaluation! Halloween Camera Tip: it is a good idea to have cameras set for continuous recording, not motion activated, during the holiday and to make sure save the information. It is a good idea to verify that cameras are properly focused on your front door or other areas you want to catch identifiable footage. Halloween is notorious for pranks, make sure you encourage your ghouls to have fun but emphasize that you disapprove of vandalism. Toilet papering, egging, lawn forking, and pumpkin smashing can cause property damage that is prosecutable, especially if caught by security cameras ~ even for juvenile offenders. 1. Have an Integrated Security System. Don’t settle for an archaic system or a “one size fits all” solution. A customized system that has battery backup, custom mobile control, and can integrate smart locks, garage doors, randomized light patterns, and even cameras is the best way to protect property and the families that reside within. Learn how you can control your home automation and security from anywhere with CallTeks security. Make it obvious that your home is secured with visible posted security signage, via yard signs and window decals. Many people ask us for “hidden” cameras however, there is value to visible cameras. When people know they are being recorded and monitored, they are a lot less likely to vandalize or burglarize property.