Di­a­mond Stan­dard lock start­ing point for a safer home

Yorkshire Post - Property - - FRONT PAGE - Sharon Dale

PO­LICE have high­lighted a lock by­pass tech­nique that is be­com­ing in­creas­ingly pop­u­lar with bur­glars.

The method – which can­not be de­scribed for ob­vi­ous rea­sons – can eas­ily be over­come by house­hold­ers, ac­cord­ing to The Mas­ter Lock­smiths As­so­ci­a­tion.

The as­so­ci­a­tion has worked with its test­ing and ac­cred­i­ta­tion sub­sidiary com­pany Sold Se­cure and de­vel­oped a Di­a­mond Stan­dard for cylin­der locks. Us­ing only locks which meet this stan­dard should thwart criminals us­ing the by­pass tech­nique.

Recog­nised by the As­so­ci­a­tion of Chief Po­lice Of­fi­cers (ACPO), the Di­a­mond Stan­dard will en­sure the lock­ing sys­tem is pro­tected against ma­nip­u­la­tion.

While get­ting hold of a Di­a­mond Stan­dard lock is the first step to­wards a more se­cure home, it is also worth us­ing a pro­fes­sion­ally trained, vet­ted lock­smith, such as a mem­ber of the Mas­ter Lock­smiths As­so­ci­a­tion, to spec­ify and fit your lock for you to en­sure it is not com­pro­mised in any way. It’s also ad­vis­able to seek ad­vice on any other se­cu­rity up­grades you may want to con­sider.

The MLA’S top tips for boost­ing home se­cu­rity in­clude:

Start by re­view­ing the ex­te­rior of your prop­erty to make sure there are no bro­ken win­dows or ac­cess to your prop­erty through garages or con­ser­va­to­ries. Lock away any tools and items such as lad­ders;

Ask a vet­ted, in­spected and qual­i­fied lock­smith to re­view your doors and win­dows (in­clud­ing in­ter­nal doors to con­ser­va­to­ries and garages) to make sure all your win­dows and doors have the most ap­pro­pri­ate locks, they are in good con­di­tion, prop­erly fit­ted and meet your in­sur­ance re­quire­ments;

Op­por­tunist thieves can of­ten ap­proach houses that ap­pear empty, so con­sider installing a num­ber of light timers around the house to give the im­pres­sion some­one is home;

Dusk to dawn or sen­sor light­ing to the front and back door of your home will de­ter po­ten­tial thieves;

Alarms can be very ef­fec­tive, but you need to change the code reg­u­larly to gain max­i­mum ben­e­fit from them;

Side win­dows can be smashed to reach keys and gain en­try so con­sider adding re­in­forced glass or maybe even block up the win­dow. Dec­o­ra­tive grilles and bars can also vastly im­prove the se­cu­rity of a home with­out be­ing detri­men­tal to the aes­thet­ics;

Home safes are be­com­ing in­creas­ingly pop­u­lar too, so you may want to con­sider ask­ing a spe­cial­ist lock­smith to spec­ify and in­stall one;

You may also want to in­stall top and bot­tom bolts on French doors or add sash jam­mers to UPVC doors;

While you are re­view­ing your se­cu­rity it is also worth con­sid­er­ing when your keys were last re­placed, whether past own­ers or tenants may still have ac­cess to your home and whether any­one may have made copies of your keys with­out your knowl­edge. If you are wor­ried, ask a pro­fes­sional lock­smith to change your locks and fit a patented sys­tem, whereby keys can only be copied with proof of own­er­ship;

Con­sider your own in­flu­ence on the level of se­cu­rity for your home and make sure you don’t in­dulge bad habits such as leav­ing keys in locks or in view that you and your fam­ily may have;

Sim­ple tips such as al­ways set­ting alarms, chang­ing codes on a fre­quent ba­sis and lock­ing any side or back gates can make a sub­stan­tial dif­fer­ence and de­ter at­tack;

Make sure you source a good qual­ity lock to pro­tect your gar­den shed and its con­tents, if you have one. (www.sol­dse­cure. co.uk is a good source of ad­vice on se­cu­rity prod­ucts);

Fi­nally, al­ways use a rep­utable third party ac­cred­ited trades­per­son to ad­vise on se­cu­rity or in­stall prod­ucts;

Visit www.lock­smiths.co.uk to find out more about lock and se­cu­rity guide­lines or to find an MLA lock­smith.

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