The Police Beat
Top Security Tips for Homes and Business Owners

Fairfax County Police Dept

Our homes are our safe havens, and FCPD is ensuring that our community members are equipped with the necessary information and tools to protect this space for ourselves and loved ones. Home burglaries can be a distressing experience, but with some precautionary measures, you can significantly reduce the risk.

  1. Secure Entry Points

Strong Doors and Windows: Ensure all exterior doors are made of solid materials and equipped with sturdy deadbolt locks. Reinforce windows with laminated glass or install security film to make them more resistant to break-ins.

Quality Locks: Invest in high-quality locks for doors and windows. Deadbolt locks with at least a one-inch throw are recommended for exterior doors.

Sliding Doors: Place a metal rod or a dowel (Charley bar) in the track of sliding glass doors to prevent them from being forced open.

  1. Adequate Lighting

Exterior Lighting: Install motion-activated lights around the perimeter of your home, especially near entry points. A well-lit property serves as a deterrent to potential burglars.

Timers: Use timers for interior lights, radios, or TVs to give the appearance that someone is home, even when you're away.

  1. Landscaping

Trim Shrubs and Trees: Keep vegetation around doors and windows trimmed to eliminate hiding spots for burglars.

Visible Address Numbers: Ensure that your house number is clearly visible from the street, making it easier for emergency responders to locate your home quickly.

  1. Neighborhood Watch

Community Awareness: Establish or participate in a neighborhood watch program. Encourage residents to look out for each other and report suspicious activity to the police.

Communication: Share information with neighbors about any recent incidents or security concerns, fostering a strong sense of community.

  1. Home Security Systems

Install Alarms: Consider installing a professionally monitored home security system. Visible alarms and signs act as powerful deterrents.

Smart Technology: Explore the use of smart home security devices, such as doorbell cameras and surveillance systems that allow remote monitoring. Remember to monitor any alarm notifications, especially when you are not home.

  1. Social Media Caution

Refrain from Broadcasting Travel Plans: Avoid announcing your travel plans or vacations on social media. This information can be exploited by burglars looking for empty homes

Privacy Settings: Review and adjust your privacy settings on social media platforms to limit the information accessible to the public.

  1. Extended Absence

Trusted Family Member or Friend: If you plan to be away for an extended period, consider having a trusted family member or friend check on your home occasionally.

Mail and Packages: Ask a trusted family member or friend to collect any mail or packages and secure them inside the home until you return.

Safety Tips for Business Owners

Invest in surveillance systems: Install high-quality surveillance cameras inside and outside your shop. Visible cameras act as a deterrent and provide crucial evidence in case of an incident.

Enhance lighting: Ensure that the area around your shop is well lit, especially during non-business hours. Adequate lighting can discourage criminal activity.

Implement alarm systems: Install a reliable alarm system that triggers law enforcement response in case of a break-in. Display signs indicating the presence of an alarm system.

Secure entry points: Assess the security of doors and windows. Reinforce entry points with strong locks and consider shatter-resistant glass to deter forced entry.

Community collaboration: Establish a network with neighboring businesses. Share information about suspicious activities and work collectively to enhance overall security. If you see anything that is suspicious, please call 911.

Create a safe cash handling procedure: Establish a secure cash-handling protocol to minimize the risk of theft. Train employees on safe practices and consider using drop safes or cash management systems.

Maintain well-defined emergency procedures: Develop and regularly review emergency procedures for your business. Ensure that employees are trained on evacuation plans, emergency exits, and procedures for various potential scenarios.

Inventory management and audits: Conduct regular inventory audits to track and account for merchandise. Implement security measures to deter theft and monitor inventory movement.

Employee vigilance training: Train employees to stay vigilant and report any suspicious activity promptly. Encourage open communication and establish a reporting system for potential security concerns within the workplace.

By implementing these practical tips, you contribute to the overall safety of our community. Remember, an informed and vigilant community is our greatest asset in preventing crime. If you observe any suspicious activity or have concerns, please don't hesitate to contact the Fairfax County Police non-emergency line at 703-691-2131. In case of an emergency, dial 911 immediately.

Join us on Neighbors by Ring. A place where you can connect with your neighbors, see what’s happening in your neighborhood, and share any available surveillance footage with our department

In an ongoing an effort to enhance the safety of local business establishments, the Fairfax County Police Department is excited to share strategic safety tips designed to empower business owners in safeguarding their premises. The goal is to provide valuable insights and proactive measures that will contribute to a secure and thriving business environment.


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