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Spanish villas Spain's National Police Issue Tips On How To Prevent Burglaries As Summer Holidays Approach Spain News

With summer fast approaching Spain’s National Police have taken the opportunity to provide tips on how to keep burglars out of our homes.

The summer seasons, as well as weekends, are according to the police, the prime time
for burglars to target empty properties.

Every year as the holiday season approaches and burglars look to take advantage of our absence the national police provide preventative measures for us to put in place to help keep our homes safe.

Spain’s National Police official website says that ‘The National Police during these periods intensifies prevention against this type of crime and provides citizens with certain advice that can help prevent these thefts, in addition to remembering that at the slightest suspicion that they may be trying to commit a crime, they must call 091.’

The following advice and tips from the Spanish National Police are easy to adopt and could help save you the pain of being broken into and losing your prized possessions.

Always lock your door with a key

Whether you are going on holiday for a few weeks or simply popping out for a few minutes, it is vital that you lock your door properly with the key.

By doing this you stop thieves from gaining access by using the well-known ‘slip method’, a method that involves inserting a piece of plastic (most commonly a credit card) between the door frame and the latch bolt.

It is also important to remember to lock all doors and windows that give access to garages, gardens and basements.

Look out for plastic strips

If you notice glue strips or plastic placed between the front door and the door frame of your home, call 091 immediately. The same goes for any suspicious marks, as these are methods used by burglars to mark homes, in order to see if they are temporarily vacant.

Be careful when announcing that you are going on holiday

When in public places, be careful when discussing an upcoming holiday as you don’t know who is listening.

Do not discuss your plans with strangers and don’t spread the news all over social media. Especially if you have previously shown your home's location in photographs or it has been disclosed when using a sporting App, in which your route has been marked.

Make your home look lived in

There are a series of measures that we can put in place to ensure that burglars do not see, from the outside, that our home is vacant.

  • Do not leave blinds or shutters in the house down, as from the outside it can attract the attention of criminals specialising in this type of burglary.
  • Take advantage of automated systems that are available on the market, so that certain electronic devices or lights can be activated periodically.
  • Arrange for a family member or close friend to collect your mail from the mailbox, so as not to allow it to pile up, letting criminals know you are away.

Beware of strangers on the property

No matter if you live in a single-family home, a building or urbanisation, always be observant as to who is outside.

  • Do not open doors to strangers. Before opening the access door to the building it is necessary to make sure that you know the person knocking. Facilitating access to outsiders can compromise not only our safety but also that of our neighbours.
  • If you should notice anyone acting suspicious in the building or in the urbanisation, you should not hesitate to call 091. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
  • If you hear unusual noises in or near a neighbour's house, especially if you know that its inhabitants are on holiday, a call to 091 will cause a National Police patrol to immediately approach the place and check if someone is trying to commit a robbery.

Do not enter, do not touch and call 091

If, in the event that you return home from your holiday or day out and find that the door is open or has been forced, DO NOT enter the property or tamper with anything. Simply call 091 so that a patrol car can be sent out to carry out the appropriate checks.

In order to recover any stolen objects and to make a possible investigation easier, it is a good idea to draw up a list prior to going away, of all electronic devices and their corresponding serial numbers.

Having photographs and a detailed list of your jewellery and valuables is also a good idea. In the event of a robbery, these can then be provided when filing a report at the police station to help trace the items.

The lock is just as important as the access door

For the security of your home, the type of lock you have is just as important, if not more, than the door you have. Make sure you have certified quality products installed.

There are locks on the market called anti-impressioning or anti-bumping locks. These locks make it difficult for burglars who use these techniques to gain entry into your home.

The imprinting technique, which is used by some criminals, aims to copy the user’s key by inserting thin foils into the lock to engrave the markings of the original key and subsequently obtain a copy.

Bumping is a technique that consists of inserting a specially modified key into the lock, with which after hitting it a series of times, the position of the bolts inside the lock is moved. This then allows the door to be opened.

In the event that you are a victim of crime, make sure you know how to report a crime in Spain.