You and your home will not be safe unless you follow good security practices. These tips will help make your protective measures effective. Keep all doors and windows locked, even if you are just going out "for a minute." If a window is left open a few inches for ventilation, it should be locked to prevent someone from opening it more. Lock gates, garages, and sheds after each use. Store bicycles, mowers, etc. in a locked garage or shed, or secure them to some stationary point. Don't leave notes on your door when you are away from home. Don't leave keys in mailboxes or planters, under doormats, or in other obvious hiding spots. Leave an extra key with a neighbor.
Learn to recognize who belongs in your neighborhood, development, or apartment, i.e:
Know who's at your door before opening it. Check photo registration card before dealing with any solicitors, peddlers, interviewers, etc. Be suspicious of persons making unsolicited offers of services. Post a NO SOLICITING sign if you don't want any solicitor to ring your door bell, knock on your door, or make any other sound to attract your attention. Ask for photo identification before letting in anyone you don't know. Check out the identification with the company or agency if you are suspicious. Never let a stranger enter your home to use the telephone. Offer to make the call yourself in an emergency. Don't give your name or whereabouts on your answering machine message. Never say you aren't home. Don't leave your home keys on a chain with your vehicle keys when you use valet parking. Also, don't leave your garage door opener where it is easily accessible. Keep your vehicle registration, proof of insurance, and any other papers with your home address on them where a criminal is not likely to find them. Don't give maids, babysitters, valets, or others working in your home access to your home keys.
Calling the Police
Call the police at 9-1-1 if you are at home and hear or see something suspicious. Don't take direct action yourself. An officer will be dispatched to your address even if you cannot speak or hang up. Don't go in or call out if you return home and suspect someone has broken into your home, for example if a window or screen is broken, a door is ajar, or a strange vehicle is parked in the driveway. Go to a neighbor's home and call the police. Don't discuss your finances or possessions with strangers. Keep valuable papers, jewelry, etc. in a bank safe deposit box. Don't store them at home unless you have a security closet or a safe that is well hidden and cannot be removed.