How to Think Like a Burglar


If you wanted to break into a house badly enough, you'd spend as much time as necessary to get past the locks and look for additional vulnerabilities like unlocked windows and keys under mats. Locks will not prevent all break-ins. Because some burglars excel at picking locks, you need additional layers of home security.

You should view your home through the mind of a burglar to see just how vulnerable it actually might be.

  • Most burglars choose homes where the break-in will be quiet, time of day means few possible witnesses, and ambience is dark or otherwise concealing.
  • Thus, a difficult-to-break-into house is a turn-off to a burglar. So yes, locks do have their value (who wants to pick a lock and risk being seen when they could waltz through an unlocked door?).
  • Even a master lock picker might be seen by the nosy neighbor and hence, run off.
  • Burglars will often bypass houses that show signs of a security system, and that includes evidence of a dog.
  • Imagine how enticing the following house would be if you decided to burgle for a living: dark, lots of shrubs and trees, no evidence of alarm system.
  • Ask yourself if your family has a predictable routine that a burglar could figure out.
  • Stand outside your house and play the role of burglar; where are your house's vulnerabilities? Do this self-casing during daylight and dark.
  • Where would you make your break-in attempt?
  • How difficult would it be for anyone to notice you?
  • Are there things (not necessarily shrubs and trees) that could conceal you?
  • Is there noise at night (e.g., neighbor's loud music) that could partially conceal the noise of breaking in?
  • Is there a trellis or tree you can climb to a second story window? Did you know a gutter can be climbed?

Robert Siciliano personal and home security specialist to discussing burglar proofing your home on Fox Boston. Disclosures.