Having a home is a great thing and it is important to be informed about the best ways to protect it and keep you and your family safe. In this article, we hope to help you get a better understanding of security.
It is important to know what type of risk your home can be put up against. A risk assessment will help you to have a good understanding of what could happen to your home and what steps would be good to take in order to prevent it.
Key Take Aways
Risk – The chance that you could lose something
Risk assessment – Taking notes of the potential risks that your home faces based on crimes that could happen as well as things like natural disasters.
Cost – Losing something of value. Not always referring to money.
Types of Risks
Fraud – Information about you that has been stolen. This info can be used to steal money, records, etc. This can badly ruin your credit and mess up your life pretty bad!
Downtime –When you work from home, and have all of your important papers and the like there, it can be pretty dangerous if your home security isn’t working or a disaster strikes.
Property Replacement – If you have some physical items that have been stolen or destroyed, you are going to want to replace them, hopefully you will be able to, but sometimes that isn’t the case.
Legal – If it is your job to keep your home under certain protections and you don’t, you can put yourself in both financial and physical trouble.
Risk Evaluation Equation
Basically, risk equals threat x vulnerability. Don’t worry, this isn’t a math class, the numbers don’t matter. It’s just a way to sort of paint a picture. If your threat is zero, your risk is zero. If your vulnerability is zero, your risk is zero. You always want to keep your threat, vulnerability, or both at zero.
Key Take Aways
Risk = Your threat x your vulnerability
Your goal number for both is zero.
If your threat or vulnerably is at zero, so is your threat
It is important to assess your threats wisely. Check to see which natural disasters affect your area and don’t prepare for ones that you will never see. Make sure that you keep an eye on your security systems as it is possible for them to fail. It is important to know your system or you can be your own issue. Operator error is on you, so make sure that the system you choose for your home isn’t too complex. Don’t forget to keep your eyes out for malicious intent. However, don’t get so wrapped up in this that you don’t focus on other parts of security. Check to see what the crime is like in your neighborhood before preparing for a malicious attempt that may never happen. Also keep an eye out for interference and interception as those can be issues as well. A big one to be careful of is impersonation. A thief that attempts this is a particular type.
Key Take Aways
Natural Disaster –Hurricanes, tornadoes, etc. Things that humans can’t control
System Failure – When your security stops working
Operator Error – When you or someone else operating the security doesn’t know what they are doing and causes the system to fail.
Malicious Intent – People specifically targeting your property.
Interference – Damage to the property without a theft.
Interception – When someone else gets your keys or codes.
Impersonation – Someone that pretends that they are either you or someone that should be granted access to the property.
Your vulnerability is based on a few things. Your vulnerability to natural disaster depends on where you live. Having low quality security systems leaves you vulnerable as well. Having a bad reputation with your neighbors or having an item of value extremely visible from the street also increases your vulnerability. Having a lock that requires a lot of skill will lower your vulnerability.
Key Take Aways
It is important to make sure that you are not the cause of your own security issues and that you assess all of the risks correctly.
Protection is there to help lower your vulnerably, threat and therefore, your risk. There are different types of protection, so let’s go over them.
Gates – Gates can have keypad locks as well as attendees and they can offer amazing protection.
Locks – Make sure that your locks work. What is the point of having a lock if it doesn’t work? If you need to get them installed by a professional locksmith, make sure to do that.
Motion sensors – Having a motion sensor is great, but it needs to be connected to another device that will either make a noise or alert you with a text.
Visibility – The less visibility your home has, the easier it is for a potential criminal to hide. Keeping your trees trimmed and having plenty of lights is a great way to stay safe.
Window protection – Windows are probably one of the easiest ways to get into a property. Investing in some window bars are a great next step after locking them of course.
Security cameras – While having fake security cameras can discourage potential criminals, they can also have zero effect on the more seasoned one. Make sure that your security system is high quality and in working order.
Alarms – Don’t get an alarm that is only going to wake up the roach that’s running around in your home. Make sure that it is loud enough to alert everyone in the nearby area that something is going on that shouldn’t be going on.
Security system – Don’t get an alarm and call it a day. A security system should not only contact you but also the authorities.
Layers – Don’t just stick to one security system, get them all. The more security, the better.
Redundancy – Make sure that if you have duplicate security systems, you have them all working as they should. If you have a lock but you don’t use it, why do you have a lock in the first place?
Access – Staying on top of who can enter your property is a great way to lower vulnerability. Just make sure that the people you give access to are people you can trust. Make sure that they are informed of any and every procedure that you have in place.
Information control – Information is a weapon. Make sure that the people that have access aren’t going around and spreading all the info to the people that don’t. Don’t label your jewelry box with a sigh that says, “Expensive Jewels In Here!” You get what I’m saying, right?
Information consistency – Don’t switch up on people, it’s not right. Be consistent with the information you give out about the security procedure of your property.
These questions are important questions to ask yourself regarding your security. It will help you to assess your threats and vulnerability.
Introspection – Looking at yourself.
What do I have that is worth something?
If I lose this, how worried would I be?
Can I figure out my security, or do I need someone else to do it for me?
Can I install new security systems or hardware?
What problems am I facing now?
What am I concerned about?
The laws in my area are?
The security that I currently have, am I using it as I should?
How well do I know my home?
Who comes by my home?
What threats do I know about?
What risks can I tolerate?
Do I have enough money to change or add anything right now?
Infrastructure – Looking at the building
Find potential problems by looking around.
Figure out the quality of your current security measure and get a good idea of your property layout.
How old are the systems?
Are your gates high enough? Do they work?
Do you need that system that you don’t have?
Are your protections working as they should be?
Are there any openings of my home where I can’t get in or out?
Residents – Neighbors and housemates (Maybe landlord or super)
What problems are the people around me having?
What is concerning them?
The Security Plan
If you make a security plan, it is important that you can actually do it and that they make sense. Make sure there are no weaknesses as only one can ruin the whole thing. Making sure that you have the best security will help to prevent anything terrible from happening to begin with. Staying on top of new tech and making a chain of command for your systems is a good idea.
Key Take Aways
Make sure that your security plans make sense and are solid, that you have a high quality security systems, and that you are constantly improving your security by knowing about the new technology.
It is important to stay organized with everything in life and your security plans are no exception. Make sure that you keep note of all the potential risks, threats, and vulnerable spots as well as what you can get to protect those areas. It is also important to know how much these things will cost as well. Using a spread sheet like google docs can be of great assistance.
The Disaster Plan
Making a disaster plan is important because it is the plan you are going to go with when all else fails. A disaster is either man made or made by natural disasters and it is important to have a plan on what to do in case this happens. Having documentation is important because it helps you to keep your information consistent and it has emergency contact information. The most important part is making sure that you have a clear exit path in case of emergency.
Key Take Aways
Having a disaster plan is important as it is the plan you will turn to when all else fails. Make sure that your disaster plan makes sense to you and to anyone else that may need to use it in your absence.
After everything is set and done, if you don’t get back up, you failed. It isn’t every one else’s fault if things didn’t go right, take the responsibility on yourself. This is a great opportunity to learn from your mistakes. Don’t focus on what went wrong, focus on how to fix it. Once you figure out what happened, fix up those gaps in your security system.
Key Take Aways
When a situation happens, it is important to plan for the future and not dwell on your mistakes. Make sure that you fix the errors in your plan so that it’s better for the future.
We need to accept that we aren’t perfect and that there are going to be errors. If there are errors in your security system, don’t freak out about it, just fix them. Don’t try for the absolute perfect security system as you might not be able to get that. Instead, focus on trying to make each new solution you find fix a larger issue.
So, what’s a CBA and what is a CEA? Well, a CBA is a cost benefit analysis. This is used to determine if what you invested in is equal to, less than, or greater than the service or product cost. This doesn’t always mean money though you have to ask yourself, will this investment help in the case of an unfortunate event?
A CEA is a cost effectiveness analysis. This is used to tell if the investments as good as the effectiveness of your solution. If any items were damaged during the security test, you should replace them.
Key Take Aways
Whether you decide to do a CBA a CEA or both, make sure that you are well informed about both and if you want to run these tests yourself or have a professional do it.
Be wary of:
- Confirmation bias in the findings of your security assessment.
Some people tend t over exaggerate situations while others don’t take it as serious as necessary. Make sure that you take everything with a grain of salt and find a balance of protecting yourself without going crazy. Some news stories may tell you the crime is getting better and other will say it is getting worse.
Lack of organization in your documentation.
Being unorganized will cause you problems in your security plans. These plans are here to help you have the ability to have a quick glance and figure out what you need to do. Keep your documents organized.
- Miscommunication in documentation and verbal interaction.
Make sure that whoever writes or types up the document does it as it should be done. Miscommunication can happen if someone confuses one word for another or if word passes around and the story changes. Keep clear documents and make sure that everyone is always up to date.
- Complacency with your current protection.
Always stay on top of your security. As fast as they are making new security systems, people are figuring out how to crack them.
- Ingress/egress points being blocked or locked.
Make sure that all entrances and exits are open and available for any escape route.
There is a lot of information here to wrap your head around but once you do, you will have a better security system than ever before!