Vacation season will be here before long, and many families are already making preparations for their seasonal getaways. In the weeks and days prior to leaving on your trip, you’ll probably be thinking more about the fun, relaxation and adventure you’ll experience than about home security measures for when you’re gone. Here are five things every family must do to decrease their chances of becoming targeted by household thieves before they leave on vacation.
1. Safeguard Private Information
Thieves are increasingly seeking electronic documents before they even look for the jewelry, so it’s important that you safeguard anything that could be used to access your personal accounts. Turning your computer completely off and locking it with a complex password is advised, and you should also make certain to remove saved passwords from your cache.
2. Use Social Media Wisely
Posting photographs of you and your family frolicking in foreign lands may alert potential criminals to the fact that your home is presently unoccupied. Wait until you are home from your trip to delight friends with the details of your journey, and encourage your children to do the same. Remember, modern criminals are doing more than just casing neighborhoods for homes that look as if they are empty — they’re tracking you electronically.
3. Practice Online Security Techniques from Your Vacation Spot
You’ll naturally want to access the internet from your laptop while you’re on vacation, but be careful not to enter passwords to financial accounts while internet connections offered in cafes and other public places no matter how tempted you are to check your online bank statement. Logging off after finishing your internet session will increase your online security. Be especially careful when using wireless internet in airports because hackers frequently target them.
4. Don’t Use GeoTracking Apps
The information supplied by GeoTracking apps can also alert potential home intruders to the fact that your home is temporarily vacant. Turning these apps off before beginning your travels is recommended. More and more thieves are perusing the online activities of their potential victims.
5. Guard Your Home
Be sure that you alert neighbors that you will be leaving town, and ask them to check in on your house. Also consider hiring a house sitter for long-term travels. If your home is not protected by a home automation system, be sure that you have a sign up that warns intruders of a dog or possible security system. Make sure some lights are on and ensure that your mail and newspapers don’t pile up, revealing that no one is home.
Taking these few simple steps will enhance your peace of mind as well as your security while you are enjoying your vacation.