Archive for April 9th, 2012

Simple Tips For Preventing Break-Ins At Your Home

© 2006, All Rights Reserved You’ve lived here for years.

You’ve never had any trouble.

But one otherwise quiet night, you hear a strange noise. It sounds like the jiggling of a doorknob. Is someone breaking into your house? Are the kids still in bed? Where did you leave the phone? It’s three o’clock in the morning, and there is no one around to help. With no home alarm system, your mind starts racing a million miles a second trying to think of ways to keep your family safe and – at the same time – work out an escape route. This is a situation all too many people find themselves in every year. The middle of a potentially life-threatening emergency with no security alarm system is no time to discover you need additional help. The best time to work those things through is right now when all is well. There are some simple ideas you can put into place right now that can help prevent break-ins at your home. Even if you have a home alarm system, these tips go a long way to give added safety.Leave the Outside Lights On Every NightMost people never turn on the outside lights unless they are leaving. While they believe turning outdoor lights on when they leave is a safety measure, they are only partially correct. Why? Because if the only time you turn the outdoor lights on is when you leave, you’re sending a glaring signal to burglars that says, «Hey! I’ve gone out for several hours tonight so help yourself.

I’ll turn the lights off when I get back so you and your buddies will know not to come around.» Turn your porch lights and other outdoor lights on every night, whether you’re leaving your home or not. This way, you accomplish two things. First, you shed light on dark areas that might otherwise help to camouflage burglars. Second, you take away the signal burglars are waiting to see that tells them you’re away from home. Alarm systems are fabulous for helping in times of emergency, but prevention is still the number-one cure for break-ins.Un-Clutter Windows and DoorwaysWhen you give burglars plenty of cover, they will likely take advantage of it. Tall bushes and shrubs that fully or partially cover windows make great hiding places. Burglars can easily squat behind a bush as they work on prying open a window for entry. Likewise, tall topiaries, statues or other objects that offer cover to burglars should be removed from around your doorways. Don’t provide anything that would give a robber a hiding place.Make It Too Much TroubleMost burglars are looking for an easy score. If they think entry will be too difficult or that there is a high risk of being caught (as is the case with security alarm systems), they will probably move on to another house. If you currently have a home alarm system, place the signs and window stickers in prominent places where they can be readily seen. This practice is frequently recommended by police departments because of its effectiveness. Motion detector lights are also good deterrents. Security pins for sliding doors and windows would definitely be too much trouble for your average burglar to fuss with. In addition, double-paned windows are extra trouble to break (and extra noisy!) giving burglars yet another reason to look elsewhere for a victim.

Another good idea is to survey your home and think like a burglar. If you were trying to break into your own house, how would you do it? What would you need to be successful? If you find easy ways to break into your home, chances are a burglar will, too. Make notes as you walk around your house and then take immediate action to stop trouble before it starts.


Protecting Your Family From Violence

It may seem surprising to some but an excellent way to protect yourself and your family from violence may be to watch more movies and TV. Here’s why: A key media organization is helping various TV shows and movies to depict the realities of such issues as health, drugs, mental illness, diabetes, sun safety, crime and guns. For example, among the safety suggestions urged for gun owners are: • Learn the characteristics of your firearm. • Treat every firearm as if it is loaded. • Always point the muzzle in a safe direction. • Keep your finger off the trigger. • Never rely on a mechanical safety. • Keep the gun unloaded and the action open until you’re ready to shoot. • Know your target and what’s behind it.

• Use only the correct ammunition for your firearm. • Know what to do in case of a misfire. • Wear protective ear and eye equipment. • Keep the firearm free of obstructions. • Don’t modify your firearm. • Do not mix guns with alcohol, over-the-counter, prescription or illegal drugs; or fatigue. The organization points out that most people have an impression of gun violence that is not always accurate.

In fact, research suggests the presence of a gun in the home increases the risk of a homicide by three times and a suicide by five times.

Studies suggest a gun in the home is more likely to be used against the owner or owner’s family, than as self-defense against an intruder. The group encourages script-writers to show gun violence realistically and to challenge the popular myths and misconceptions, perhaps with real life examples, current events, statistics and examples of gun safety and injury prevention measures. The next time you turn on the TV or go to the movies, watch for whether this advice has been followed.

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Preparing Your Home For A Vacation

You have probably spent a great deal of time planning your vacation.

You have researched hotels, you found the best price on airfare, you arranged a rental car and you might have even planned out an itinerary.

There is one important detail that you have probably forgotten. Have you planned for the security of your home while you are gone. Empty houses are a magnet for thieves. If you would like to make sure that everything is still in your home when you get back, there are some steps that should be taken.Make Your Home Look Lived In

The most important thing that you can do to keep your home safe is to make it look like you never left. Don’t leave obvious signs that you are on vacation. Have a friend or a neighbor come by and pick up newspapers, mail and door flyers. Also leave some lights on inside your home. Nothing says this house is empty than a house with no lights on. You can buy timers relatively cheaply these days. Buy a couple of timers and program lights , TVs’ and radios to come on at usual times. Avoid leaving answering machine messages saying that you are on vacation. Also check your voice mail occasionally to keep your mail box from filling up. It wouldn’t be hard for a burglar to do a reverse search on your address and get your phone number.

Lastly, if you plan on being gone for a long period arrange for someone to cut your lawn.Make Your Home Physically Secure

Make a thorough security sweep of your home. Check all windows, door locks and deadbolts. Do not assume that a criminal could not enter that third story window. If you keep spare keys outside of your home, do not leave them in obvious locations. Keys located under flower pots, under door mats or even in cheap artificial rocks are not secure. Also be sure that you call your alarm company if you have one. Tell them you will be on vacation and give them a contact number for a friend or neighbor.Prepare To Be Robbed

No matter how many precautions you take, you could still be robbed. Prepare for the worst by making an inventory of all of your valuables. It will be a big help when you need to settle up with your insurance company. If you have a camcorder or can borrow one, take a video inventory. Store the tape in a safe place such as a safe deposit box. If you have large valuables, etch your drivers license number into them. It will make them much easier to identify if they wind up at a local pawn shop. Nobody expects to be a victim of crime, but it does happen. By taking a little time to protect your home you can greatly reduce your chances of being a victim or make it easier to recover from a burglary.

The Truth About Identity Theft

The Federal Trade Commission reports that identity theft is the fastest growing crime in America. The term «identity theft» was not even coined until a few years ago. These days we seem to hear it every time we turn on the television or open a magazine.

But what is the real truth about identity theft? The United States Department of Justice offers this definition: «Identity theft and identity fraud are terms used to refer to all types of crime in which someone wrongfully obtains and uses another person’s personal data in some way that involves fraud or deception, typically for economic gain.» So how real is this threat? Several of the world’s largest banks and data collection agencies have suffered fraud affecting millions of people. The IRS has stated that their networks of personal and financial records are not well protected. It appears that we are all at risk for identity theft, and there may not be anything we can do about it. In fact, many people who are at risk don’t even realize it. So what are some ways to stop identity theft? How do you know if you are putting yourself at risk of becoming a victim? Take, for example, your driver’s license or health insurance card. In many instances, the account or license number is the same as your Social Security number. Calling a pharmacy, doctor’s office, or car insurance company will often lead to you being asked for your Social Security number as a means of identification. Your personal checks often include your name, address, bank account number, and signature. They’re often supplemented at the store’s request with your phone number and driver’s license number or Social Security number. An unscrupulous store clerk may easily gain access to all this information. No matter what type of data you are providing, whether it’s to your doctor’s office, your pharmacy, your bank, stores you make purchases from, schools, or even the IRS, this information has a chance of being compromised. The internet has made spreading and selling the information not only easier, but more anonymous for the criminals. The volume of information in today’s society makes identity theft an ever-present danger. Recently, companies have begun adapting to the changing environment and recognizing the very real threat that identity theft poses. Those with large databases of personal and financial information are being required to better protect that data.

The United States government has joined by prosecuting identity theft criminals. Credit card companies, banks, and insurance companies have begun to offer identity theft insurance. Here are several places to search on the internet if you would like to learn more about identity theft and identity fraud, and what government programs have been implemented to help curb this financial threat. Department of Justice: Federal Trade Commission: Identity Theft Resource Center: Consult with your bank, your credit card companies, and your insurance company to see what steps they are taking to help prevent identity theft. Find out what coverage they can offer to protect you in case it happens to you. Make sure that you do business with companies which are supporting government legislation to curb identity theft and identity fraud. The truth is that identity theft is out there. It’s not just a scare tactic used by insurance companies to sell needless coverage to unsuspecting clients. The threat is very real, but with research and information, you can help lower your risk of becoming one of its victims.

There are some phone taps that are not true taps at all. They are more like bugs that only allow you to listen to one end of the conversation. While one end can be very useful, the fact is that it can also be very incomplete, leaving a lot of things to conjecture.

The most effective phone taps allow you to listen to both ends of the conversation so that you can get as much context from the conversation as possible.

Usually hard taps, soft taps, and advanced cell phone bugs are the phone taps that can allow you to listen to both sides of the conversation. These are taps that get you “into the system,” so to speak, so that you are in the middle of the communication. The best and most advanced taps are not noticeable by the parties being listened to, and so the eavesdropper can hear whatever needs to be heard without letting the others know she or he is there. Hard phone taps are those that make use of an actual physical line. They consist of a secondary line hooked into the primary line and then bridged to another location. The person listening can be at the location of the tap, or they can use a “slave” to send a transmission. This type of phone tap is extremely difficult to detect, as it is hardwired and usually at a location away from the phone, so sweeping the room for bugs will not be effective. Soft phone taps are those that take place inside the software of the phone company. The listener gains access to the digital network by hacking in or receiving permission. Most phone companies today now incorporate digital lines into their service, even if the person has a land line.

This means that the listener only needs to know which line is associated with the conversation he or she would like to listen to. These are relatively easy to find if someone knows how to look in the software, but virtually undetectable to the parties having the conversations. Cell phone taps are another matter altogether. They make use of a special cell phone that allows you to dial a secret number to activate the phone for listening. The user is usually unsuspecting and has no idea you are listening to the conversation when you use cell phone taps. (c) 2005 Copyright This article is about: Phone Taps.

Outdoor Landscape Lighting as a Security System

Outdoor landscape lighting can be a very decorative addition to any garden. But what about the additional benefits of the security and safety that it can also provide. Security Outdoor landscape lighting is one of the best security systems you can install. Landscape lighting can be used as a deterrent to residential crime. Correct proportions of outdoor landscape lighting surrounding your home, has been shown to minimize crimes by as much as fifty percent. Landscape lighting has two great uses to aid in the security of your home. The lighting can intimidate possible intruders to avoid trespassing on to your property. Should this fail, the illuminated areas will also make it possible for you or your neighbor’s to see any intruders as they trespass. As well as lighting an intruder visually, they will also create shadows. At night when vision is limited a moving shadow is easy to see. Even though you probably won’t clearly make out the intruder in the darkness, your eye will be drawn to the movement straight away which will put you on alert immediately.

When designing your outdoor landscape lighting it is a good idea to light the pathways separately as to lighting individual garden features. This can be done using separate wiring circuits. To save power the feature lighting can be turned off very late at night, say after 1.30 am and the pathway lighting can remain on for safety and security. Also remember when wiring your outdoor landscape lighting, make sure to bury the wiring. It is common for intruders to see this wiring an cut it knowing that it will blow the lighting fuse which will turn off all of your lights. Safety Typically low voltage lighting systems are used for outdoor landscape lighting around the home. The preferred light fittings used to create outdoor landscape lighting, are low voltage, weather resistant fixtures. The low voltage used reduces the risk of electrocution if live wiring or terminals are touched. Also if power supply transformers are used to reduce the voltage, then they also isolate the low voltage system from the mains voltage which increases safety.

Low voltage lighting outdoor systems around the home garden also use low wattage lamps.

These do not heat up as much as the larger sized lamps commonly used inside the home. The risk of burning anyone is reduced. Also the risk of burning and damaging plants by the directed light is also greatly reduced. Maintenance Always check your low voltage outdoor landscape lighting regularly. Say once every week. Lamps eventually burn out and require replacement regularly. Another problem is that plants outgrow their original shape and form and you will need to re-aim the lighting again to suit. The neighbor’s cat or dog may also knock your lighting over if it is loosely installed.

Home Security-Low Cost Alarms That Work

For most people their home is their biggest investment. In 2006 the median price for a home is expected to be $231,000. And of course everyone has insurance on their house. Everyone has insurance on their car as well. But more people have alarms for their car than their home.

How does that make any sense? Most people associate home security alarms with high ticket home security systems, home security alarm systems or home security monitoring that can cost $70 a month or more. I recently heard of a new home security company in New Mexico that is hiring ex police officers only to respond to alarm calls from members because quite frankly the response time from the police department was way to slow. Monitored security systems are effective no question about that. The question is-is there an effective way to protect your house without sending you to the poor house. Obviously there is a point where cost becomes prohibitive. Each situation is different for sure. Depending on the risk level of the area in which you live many low cost home security devices will do the job just as well as the high priced toys. Remember the objective is to prevent a burglary-keep the intruder from intruding. Recently in Colorado Springs a woman was saved from an uncertain fate by an intruder trying to get into her house. She was awakened in the middle of the night by her barking dogs. Now I am not suggesting that everyone get a dog because quite frankly a lot of dogs are not suited for this anyhow. But let’s look at some inexpensive alternatives that do work. The simplest and least expensive are security alarms activated by opening a window or door. When the alarm is activated a 110 decibel alarm goes off. Other systems using infrared technology detect motion in a room and set off an alarm. Yet another device sets of a realistic barking dog sound when movement is sensed from 30 feet away thru doors and walls. The barking gets louder and more frequent as the intruder approaches. One more system that has a broader appeal is a motion activated annunciator system that can detect movement from 1000 feet away and «lets you know» if someone is approaching in your driveway, back yard or patio.

This system can trigger a floodlight if it senses movement in a designated area. It can monitor up to six zones. There are many home security alarms available that will do the job effectively without breaking the bank. Why take a chance with such a valuable investment. There are many choices available-one has to be right for your home.

A Safe Apartment

There are special dangers involved with apartment living. This is because you live so close to many other people. Their actions can jeopardize your safety and so it’s very important for you to be aware of what you must do to safeguard yourself, your family and your possessions. Fire Safety . . . Fire is perhaps the greatest danger in apartment buildings. With so many units joined together, it doesn’t take long for fire to spread from one to another. The following guidelines are critical to your safety: • Install smoke detectors in the kitchen, all bedrooms, the laundry area and hallways.

You must test them every month and replace the batteries every 6 months. They won’t do you any good if they aren’t in working order. • Keep fire extinguishers handy in the kitchen, laundry area and near your outside grill. • Develop an escape plan. This plan should include two ways of exiting – in most cases, this will probably include the main door and either a window or door wall. If you live on a higher floor and don’t have access to a fire escape, purchase a rope ladder to use for exiting from windows or a balcony. Practice your escape plan regularly so each member of your family knows exactly what to do in case of fire. • Never use an elevator during a fire. • Never park in front of fire hydrants or in fire lanes and make sure your guests don’t either. General Safety . . . Fire isn’t the only danger in an apartment building. You must also be aware of hazards that can exist no matter where you live and take precautions to prevent them. • Install a carbon monoxide detector. • Install screen guards or window stops and doorstops on your patio door to protect your children from falling. • Keep your apartment and building number near the telephone so your family or babysitter can access it in case of an emergency. Remember that memories can fail during emergencies. • Make certain your apartment number is clearly marked on your door. • Be sure that each person in your family knows how to dial 911. Protecting from Intruders . . . There are many people coming and going in an apartment complex. Criminals count on this anonymity. That makes it very important to get to know the other tenants. When you do, not only are you better able to identify someone who doesn’t belong, it also makes it more likely that tenants will look out for one another. • Consider forming an “apartment watch”.

This is similar to a neighborhood watch but confined to your apartment complex. If a group of tenants is on the alert for suspicious behavior, they can prevent many problems from arising. • Install quality deadbolt locks on your door and place a wooden rod or steel brace on sliding doors. One caution about deadbolt locks – don’t purchase those that require a key. In an emergency, you won’t have time to search for the key. • Make sure your landlord has installed good lighting in all stairways, hallways, and common areas like the laundry room. • Make sure that if your building has a common entry, the entry door locks so that only tenants can enter. Never open that door for strangers. If you follow these guidelines, practice good common sense, and are alert to what’s going on around you, your apartment will provide a safe home for you and your family.

Is a Dummy Home Security Camera Economical?

A home security camera is one way to protect your home against would be burglars. A home security camera system is essentially one or more small cameras that are mounted, usually, on the exterior of your home to deter would be burglars.

A home security camera typically works in conjunction with a home security system. In many cases the home security camera is activated by motion and can swivel to begin filming in the direction in which motion is detected. The home security camera will transmit the images that it views to a monitor where it can be viewed and recorded. Purchasing a home security camera for several locations on your property and the monitoring and recording equipment can be quite expensive. A home security camera has been proven to be an effective burglary deterrent and for these reasons some homeowners opt for a dummy home security camera to deter burglars without the high price of a real home security camera. The question, however, is whether or not a dummy home security camera can really be an effective way to protect your home from burglary. There really is no simple answer to this question. A dummy home security camera that is very convincing and can be difficult to distinguish from a real home security camera might be effective.

The more the dummy camera looks like the real thing, the more likely it is to fool burglars.

The problem with this is that the more realistic the dummy security camera looks, the more expensive it will be. The price may still be lower than a real camera but it may be close enough in price that a real home security camera might be a better option. There are many dummy home security cameras that can be purchased for very little money but when the price is lower so is the quality of the replication. A dummy home security camera that is clearly a fake will not be effective when it comes to deterring burglars. For many determining whether or not a dummy security camera is an economical choices has more to do with effectiveness than it does with finances. A dummy security camera may certainly be an affordable home security option but if is not effective, it will turn out be very costly. A real home security camera will more than pay for itself if it prevents you from losing valuable or irreplaceable pieces of property. A real home security camera not only acts as a burglary deterrent but in the event that the burglars do enter your property, a real security camera can record valuable evidence that might be useful in regaining your property.

If your house is on fire would your gun or firearms be safe? If a burglar were to break into your house, would he find your gun easily and steal it? Is your gun easily accessible so that it can be reached by others who are unauthorized to handle the gun, allowing misuse? These are the three main important questions that every gun owner must answer, and if the answer to any one of these questions or to all of these questions is in the affirmative, then what he needs immediately is a gun safe.

Consider these 4 revealing statistics: 1. In the United States of America, the FBI has estimated that there are more than 341,000 incidents of firearm theft from private citizens every year on average. By nature, we tend to believe that firearm theft will not occur to «us» …and that theft only occurs to others. It is time to get wiser, that theft does not wait for any man. For many who possess guns or firearms that are actually hierlooms, the loss of the firearms would mean much more than normal loss. It means loss of something sentimental, and it would be worse if that hierloom was used in the commission of a crime resulting in loss of life. 2.Guns and firearms are stolen with a purpose – stolen guns often end up in the hands of unwanted individuals and criminals who may use them to commit further misdeeds, burglary, theft, robbery and even cause bodily harm to others. Worse, children and kids may mistaken a real gun for a toy and mishandle it if the gun is not stored away properly, resulting in accidents.

We have read and seen actual cases where kids have easy access to the parents firearms, resulting in terrible unnecessary loss of lives and untold misery that lasts for life.

It is estimated that over 30% of the firearms used in the commission of a crime are stolen from American homes and businesses. Now, that is a really worrisome figure. Theft of guns is becoming a source of further crime and gun-owners must take on a role to prevent increasing firearms theft. 4. A burglar has a time window of around 6 minutes to look quickly for prized possessions and assets to steal when he breaks into a home, this being the time burglars would be «comfortable» in the commission of his crime. Frustrate the burglar’s «time comfort zone», by storing away your gun properly. Considering your responsibility as a firearms owner,it is no longer wise to store your gun in a drawer, or under a desk or behind a picture frame – places where burglars and unauthorized persons will zoom in for. Every responsible gun owner needs a gun vault or a gun safe – fireproofed, locked and inaccessible to unwanted persons…and safe from theft, fire and misuse.

Identity theft commonly begins with the loss or theft of a wallet or purse. But there are many or high-tech and low-tech ways criminals can get their hands on your personal and financial information in order to commit identity theft. When someone uses your name or personal information, such as your credit card number, driver’s license number, Social Security number, telephone number, or other account numbers, without your permission, you become a victim of identity theft. Thieves steal your personal information and use it to open credit accounts, bank accounts, telephone service accounts, and make major purchases in your name. These criminals use your sensitive information to take over existing accounts, or open new accounts. Their criminal activities can result in damage to your credit rating and denials to credit and job offers.

Protecting Your Identity While there are no guarantees that your identity will never be stolen or compromised, there are several steps you can take to minimize the risks. Here are a few of them: • Before you discard your personal information that you no longer need, such as credit card receipts, billing statements, and pre-approved credit card offers, shred them using, at best, a diagonal-cut shredder. • Create unique passwords and personal identification numbers (PINS) and avoid using easily available information such as mother’s maiden name, date of birth, or last four digits of your Social Security number. • Do not give your Social Security number to people or companies that you do not know. • Guard your mail from theft. Promptly remove your incoming mail from your mailbox and place outgoing mail in locked collection boxes at your local Post Office. • As an extra measure of security, install a lock on your mailbox, even if mail theft is not an identified problem in your neighborhood. • Before disclosing personal information, even to people you know where you shop or do business, insist on knowing the reason(s) your personal information is required and how it will be used. Low-Tech Rip-offs: Thieves can do much damage with what they remove from your mailbox. Criminals are increasingly creative in the methods they use to get their hands or eyes on your personal information, and ultimately, your money. Here are some of the low-tech techniques they employ: • Dumpster Diving, one of the easiest ways for them to appropriate your personal information. • Mail Theft from unsecured residential mailboxes.

According to statistics, mail theft most often takes place at unprotected and easily accessible mailboxes in public places. • Shoulder surfing takes place when a thief watches or listens literally over your shoulder as you enter your PIN into an ATM machine. They may even follow you home or your place of work to gather additional information about you. High-Tech Techniques: Data transferred across the Internet can be intercepted during its journey. • Phishing and Pharming: While phishing is a scam in which consumers are tricked into entering their personal information via a bogus email and website form, pharming occurs where hackers steal personal information from numerous people simultaneously through something known as «domain spoofing». They take over a DNS server and redirect user information to a new website that they use to gather, collect, «pharm» illegal information. • Skimming: Thieves quickly and temporarily steal a credit card and run it through a skimmer, a credit card reader that has been reprogrammed to steal information off the card.

Fight Back: Reduce the Risks Make education about the scams, schemes, and frauds criminal use to steal your identity your priority in view of the rising occurrence of this multi-million-dollar-problem.

With education comes prevention. Here are some prevention tips to help reduce the risks: • Safeguard your personal information. Never take simple things for granted. • Carry with your only the information you need. Always keep your personal information and documents in a safe and secured place of your choosing. • Order and review a copy of your credit report at least once a year. • Shred documents containing your sensitive information before discarding them. For extensive information about ways to protect your identity, visit «Protecting Your Identity» at

Picking the right lock

Lock picking is the activity that opens a lock without the proper key. When we are thinking of it, usually we are associating it with illegal activities. But that isn’t always the case! Let’s think for example what we can do if we have lost the house key or if we have locked ourselves outdoors. If we live on the ground floor we could jump through the window (if it’s not open we can easily break it with a stone). But if we are not, we either unlock the door or… break it (which is not a cheap solution).

With a bit of talent and an unsophisticated lock, we can manage to unlock it ourselves. Though the reality is not quite like in the movies (when a door is unlocked in a couple of minutes, just in time for the hero to save the heroine). The best solution is to call for a professional locksmith, who is trained to deal with these situations. When picking a lock, a locking tools kit is needed. The simplest kit contains a tension wrench (a screwdriver for example) and a lock pin (a long, thin piece of metal, curved at the end). In an emergency situation, a lock pin is successfully replaced with a hair pin. A professional kit will have a lot of tension wrenches (in different sizes and shapes) and a lot of dimensions for the lock pins. Or it could have a pick gun (contains many metal pieces, that vibrate and push all the lock pins up at once). First step is to insert the tension wrench in the keyhole and turn the cylinder like a normal key would do. Then we can insert the lock pin and carefully start to lift the pins up. When they reach the normal position we will hear a slight click and the lock is unlocked. Along with “picking” there is another technique called “racking”. It presents a lower level of precision. We need a special pick called a “rake”. This will be inserted until it hits the back of the cylinder (not slowly like a pick) and it will be pulled out quickly in order to hit all the pins up on its way out. In the meantime the cylinder is turned with the tension wrench. Master locks are one of the hardest locks to be picked! They are not infallible, but they do have an excellent protection system. They were invented in 1921, by Henry Soref, who thought of producing the padlocks in laminated layers of steel. While the Master locks in padlocks have the same picking system as the other locks, Master locks in combined formats require a patient and skillful locksmith.

There are a lot of lock picking books, which teach us the techniques of lock picking step by step. Sometimes they are accompanied by a video or CD for a better illustration. Some of the books are written for professional locksmiths, but there are also many others directed to people that simply want to know more about the subject. Sometimes the books show the history of locks and lock picking or how a person can become a locksmith! When buying a lock, we have to keep in mind the value of what we intend to protect! Most locks can be picked, but buying a good one increases our security and safeness!

Preparing your house for a hurricane is very important, and it does not need to be a difficult task when done properly.

Most of the things that are important for protecting your home can be done in advance so you have everything you need when a storm comes your way. The most important thing to have for any home is window protection. Windows are the weakness of any structure, but they do provide the light that is necessary for everyday living. Plywood is the easiest way to cover any basic window. It is inexpensive and easy to store away. You can simply nail it to the outside of your house to cover any windows, however there are many other ways to ensure protection in fierce winds. You can install brackets for holding the plywood. The brackets screwed into the structure to insure ample strength and they offer a quicker way to secure your house in an emergency. Another great option to protect your home is with storm shades. They are a strong metal shade that rolls down over a window to protect it. They can easily be added to any existing home or be built into the exterior walls of a home under construction. They can be raised and lowered manually or be controlled by a electric motor. Either way, they are both just as effective against storm damage. They have become the standard window protection for any waterfront home because of the constant ocean winds. The storm shutters are not very cosmetically appealing, but when they are installed with new construction homes, the appearance is minimized. Many condo structures include them when they are constructed because they offer such great protection. Besides just storm protection, the shutters offer great heat and light protection.

Shutters can be automated to close during the day so that your home receives less sun exposure.

This will keep summer electric bills at a lower cost as well as offering criminal protection during the day.

When shades are closed at night they also offer the criminal protection and will block the morning sun in any room desired. Storm shutters are common in many countries for their versatile uses, and are becoming more popular in the United States every year.

The hurricane season will be upon us shortly and it is wise to begin preparations for all consequences associated with these catastrophic events. Timely and proper planning will avoid much of the stress resulting from hurricane damage and may well avoid injury and loss of life. The Hurricane Season Many people do not realize that the hurricane season is lengthy and spans the six month period from June 1 to December 1 each year. The frequency of major storms has been escalating recently in cycles that increase and decrease over 10 to 20 year periods. Most weather forecasters acknowledge that we are presently in a cycle of increased hurricane activity with the potential for as many as 15-17 named storms forecasted in 2006. Areas of Risk Hurricanes and tropical storms are a worldwide phenomenon. The storms affecting the United States and the Caribbean are called hurricanes while the storms in the Pacific are called typhoons and tropical storms in the Indian Ocean are designated tropical cyclones. Low lying coastal areas are at increased risk but inland areas as far as 200-300 miles can still suffer heavy damage. In the United States the coastal areas of the Southeast are at risk and all areas of the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico have historically seen extensive storm damage; areas as far north as Massachusetts and Rhode Island have suffered direct hurricane hits.

In 2006, at least one major storm is forecasted to hit the Middle Atlantic and Northeast states. Hurricanes are Serious Events Anyone who has experienced a hurricane will attest to the fact that these are serious weather events. Hurricanes are ranked from category 1 (sustained winds in excess of 78mph) to category 5 (sustained winds in excess of 155mph); even a category 1 storm can create extensive damage. Damage from wind, flooding and storm surges can destroy buildings and cause widespread flood damage. By far the most serious cause of impairment however, is the storm surge created by wind pressure and wave action. Storm surges as high as 30 feet are not uncommon in major storms. In 2005 a category 3 storm (Katrina) destroyed a large portion of New Orleans and, notwithstanding substantial Federal Government aid, the area has yet to recover. In 2004 a deadly category 5 storm (Ivan) destroyed many of the homes and buildings on a number of islands in the Caribbean and the coastline of the Gulf of Mexico.

Ivan was particularly dangerous with 24 hours of sustained winds of 165 mph and wind gusts recorded as high as 207mph.

With a storm surge of over 20 feet, approximately 1/3 of a particular island was covered by water and disappeared from radar as the storm passed. Hurricanes generally result in at least some loss of life both at sea and on land even for relatively minor storms, however major storms can be much more devastating. At the turn of the twentieth century, an unnamed storm took the lives of between 6,000 to 10,000 people in Galveston, Texas. The worst recorded loss of life resulted from a tropical cyclone that hit East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) with over 200,000 lives lost. At a minimum, hurricanes result in the loss of water service, electrical power and communications for a period of time during and after the storm. Frequently, this period can extend for weeks and even months in some cases. Modern Technology is Good News Modern computer technology and forecasting techniques have increased the period of warning that allows preparation for the impact of the storm. These types of warnings allow preparation and even evacuation in the event of a powerful, threatening storm. For those who remain in place during a storm, advance preparation is required in order to survive the aftermath of the storm.

This requires stockpiling of the proper supplies prior to the storm because demand for supplies immediately before a storm increases rapidly and shortages occur. Therefore, advance preparation is the key to survival success. A Three Step Disaster Plan In order to survive a hurricane disaster, proper planning is critical and takes enormous effort. In addition to assembling supplies as early as possible, a plan must be devised and also practiced. A simple but effective plan developed by The Harvard Medical School is as follows: 1) Collect disaster supplies The devastation incurred by Hurricane Katrina is graphic evidence of just how destructive natural disasters can be. Those affected are without electricity, water, domestic gas, telephone and even shelter. To be prepared, collect the following items and store them so that they will easily be found in the event of an emergency — but not so easily that you end up depleting the supplies without realizing it. Some people store these items in a section of the basement or a closet that is used infrequently. Decide what will work best for you. Disaster-supply list — Bottled water (1 gallon per person per day; three-day supply ideal) — Cash (ATM and credit cards may not work or be accepted by businesses) — Cellular phone (with non electrical charger, such as a car charger or AAA battery pack) — Clothing and underwear — Phone numbers of friends and family — Important Documents (driver’s license, passport, birth certificate, etc.) in a waterproof container — Dust mask (one per person) — Eating utensils (plastic or disposable) — Emergency numbers: local, state and federal — Financial inventory (a list of bank and investment accounts, mortgages and loans, including account numbers and location of original documents) — First-aid kit (see «Your first-aid kit,» below) — Flashlight with extra batteries — Food (canned goods and other nonperishable items that do not require cooking) — Masking tape, duct tape — Medical information (list of your medications, any chronic conditions and medical history) — Medications (three-day supply of all daily medications) — Paper towels, toilet paper and sanitary products — Pet supplies and carrier (include food, water, leashes and records of shots) — Plastic sheeting — Radio (battery-operated) with extra batteries — Scissors — Sleeping bags or blankets (one per person) — Toiletries (soap, toothpaste, toothbrush, etc.

) — Tools (can opener, knife, pliers; a Swiss army knife may suffice) — Trash bags 2) Create a portable supply kit In case you have to evacuate your home, it is good to put the supplies you think you would need the most in a portable container. Some people try to fit all of the supplies listed above in a large rolling trashcan with a lid or a large rolling cooler. Another option is to store the items in several small coolers or boxes. Think about what supplies you need, what you can reasonably carry or store in your car, and how many people will be available to help you transport the supplies. 3) Develop and practice an emergency plan All the planning in the world will not do much good if you do not prepare ahead of time. Not only does this enable you to go through your plan while you are calm and thinking clearly, but it also enables you to modify it before you have to put it into action. — Identify emergency evacuation routes and shelters in your community and near your workplace. — Decide where family members should meet if you are separated in an emergency. — Identify a backup location to meet at, in case the first location is impossible to reach. — Identify a point-person in the family who will serve as the central contact to call in case of confusion. — Choose an out-of-state friend or relative to serve as a backup contact, in the event that local lines are tied up or out of service. — Provide every member of the family with a cellular phone or prepaid phone card to make sure they can make a call in the event of an emergency. — Consider family members with special needs while making plans.

(For example, who will help someone in a wheelchair?) Do not forget your pets, either. (For example, where can you leave pets if you have to evacuate to a hotel that does not allow them?) — Practice the plan at least once per year. Source: Harvard Medical School ( Water is Critical Of all the supplies listed the most critical by f

ar is an adequate supply of drinking water. Everything else (including food) is secondary to water because the body needs a large and continuous supply of fresh water. After a hurricane, water service is interrupted for lengthy periods of time because of lack of power and the fact that existing water supplies are often polluted. Pure and fresh water is mandatory to ensure proper hydration and avoid disease spread through polluted water. Plan to collect and store water supplies that exceed the minimum and use the highest quality water possible. Ultra-pure distilled water can be stored for long periods because there are no minerals or bacteria in the water; supplies can be maintained almost indefinitely if stored in a cool dark place.

Estimate supplies for more than your immediate needs because in times of emergency and hurricanes many people move to safer structures or higher ground, which may burden existing supplies of safer locations.

Plan for the worst as your life and well being may be at stake

You may not think that a false alarm on your home security alarm system is a big deal but more and more home security alarm providers and local police departments are beginning to impose fines when home security alarm systems are tripped without cause on more than one occasion.

It is estimated that as many as 95% of all alarms are false alarms. While this may sound reassuring to homeowners, it can be costly to home security alarm system providers and local police departments. It is a waste of their resources when they respond to a false home security alarm. This is why many home security alarm providers and police departments are beginning to levy fines for excessive false alarms. Homeowners should understand how their home security alarm system works in order to avoid future false alarms. A common cause of false alarms in home security alarm systems with motion detectors is mistakes made by the homeowner. If your home security alarm system has motion detectors you should not place hanging plants near the motion detectors. If they sway while the motion detectors are activated your home security alarm system could be falsely triggered. Also, if you have pets secure them in a room that does not have motion detectors so that they will not contribute to false alarms. Blinds and curtains could also cause a false alarm. Moving air expelled from air vents could allow blinds and curtains to sway just enough to trip the motion detectors on your home security alarm system. You should ensure that your curtains and blinds are not in a position where they can be moved by the air from the vents. Other tips for avoiding false alarms in your home security alarm system are related to common sense. For example, you should ensure that each person who has authority to enter your home is aware of how to deactivate the alarm when they enter the property.

Anyone who is able to enter your property should know how to deactivate the alarm system so that they do not cause a false alarm by entering the home and not deactivating the system. You should not only tell each person how to disarm the home security alarm system but you should also allow them to practicing arming and disarming the home security alarm system so that they will have no trouble when they need to enter the property. Also, keeping your doors and windows in good working condition can help to avoid false alarms in your home security alarm system. If your door or window is not functioning properly, it could trigger a false alarm. Responding to false alarms from home security alarm systems is costly to the local police. When home security alarm systems trigger without cause, the police waste time and resources responding to these alarms. For this reason, homeowners should be diligent about avoiding false alarms with their home security alarm system.

Plain Sight Covert Hidden Cameras

One of the uniquely inconspicuous ways to use covert hidden cameras is by utilizing the book camera. It is a wireless system that contains a high quality CCD camera and it fits in virtually anywhere you want to put it. Stick it up on the shelf with all of your other books or put it in a stack of books on your desk or credenza.

No one will be the wiser.

Let us say that you like to have music playing in the background where you work. It doesn’t matter if you like to listen to the radio or a CD player; there are boom boxes that contain covert hidden cameras that play both. With a line of site of up to seven hundred feet, this entertaining boom box can secretly keep an eye on what is happening and with four different channels available, you can run up to four units simultaneously. Whether you use it in the home or in the office, you will be sure keep your surveillance a secret. Another clever way that covert hidden cameras are being used is in a special coffee mug. This item is ideal for interrogation rooms of law enforcement agencies, as well. The mug contains a tiny camera and video transmitter that automatically switches from color to black and white in low light situations. You can use up to four units at once and they are good for a range of up to one thousand feet depending upon the terrain and RF interference.

How to Find the Best Home Security Products

As more and more people are getting aware of the importance of securing their houses by using the various home security products different companies are launching new home security products everyday. It’s a new market, yet the number of options available in each category of home security products can be overwhelming for the starters. Well, here is some good news, this article was written just for you and it summarizes some of the best home security products which you could use to make your house a safer place and reduce chance of burglaries and break-ins.

The best, and sometimes most effective home security products in preventing burglary, is just a signboard saying that your house is protected by this and that securitization system. Such a strategy is not effective in catching the criminal but researchers found it to be very effecting in preventing a crime in the first place. Most of the home security products generally come with such a signboard but they are mostly small or may not be visible in the background of your house, so you might consider buying one specially customized for your house. A similar product is the dummy camera for those on a tight budget. Installing a dummy camera on a very visible location outside your house might discourage the burglars right away as they might not want to risk entering your camera protected property. Preventive measures are good for “preventing” but sometimes the preventive home security products aren’t just good enough so you’ll need some actual home security products to completely safe guard your house. Alarms and cameras are the most commonly used home security product today, the two can be used separately or together for enhanced safety. Alarms generally go off when someone tries to force entry through windows or doors, make sound and try to attract your neighbor’s attention, while some can be linked with an alarm monitoring system which can notify the authorities after a routine check for accidental alarm. For those who can afford high end products and need additional safety there are home security products like talking devices, master control panel, sensors, motion detectors, key pads, back up power supply for the home security products and so on.

First of all a security system is not an alarm system, although the alarm system plays an important part in the overall security plan.

In fact,no single component should be seen as most important, although as I will explain some measures provide greatest value for the security money you will be investing. The first step though is a survey of the premise, including how it is used, for what purpose and by whom, and of course the physical layout. Risk factors and loss potential are scrutinized as these greatly influence the budget. Barrier security will be the first step in the implementation of the security system and devices such as window bars, security gates, security film, security grilles and good locks provide the greatest value for the money you will be investing. Barrier security can also be achieved through installation of security films which are fitted onto existing glass, security films such as Profilon tm, made by Haverkamp in Germany provide a near invisible coating that transforms glass into transparent armor. Security films are especially useful for strengthening glass in offices and homes. Typically thicker films work best for security applications and fourteen mil security film is currently consider minimum for commercial applications.

Security films work best on larger surface areas.

Installation is very important and is as important to the barrier security as the choice of film. The glass type is also important with ordinary annealed glass as the design favorite. However if possible the glass should be changed to a laminated glass as that is the best substrate for security film. Installing on tempered glass should be avoided due to break characteristic of that glass. This is of utmost importance as door glass must conform to a safety code and that is almost always done with tempered glass and forced entry through glass accounted for two thirds of all break-ins. Unless the glass is changed to annealed or laminated glass single pane commercial doors should not be fitted with security film. It simply will not work. The mechanical bond of security film to the edges will add to or decrease the value of security film as barrier security and if possible security film should be fitted under the glass retaining stops. To increase the effectiveness of security film in the security system the alarm system should include glass break detectors of the dual technology type or signature type. Very loud siren horns and or strobe lights outside over the glass is an excellent way to augment the effectiveness of security film in the security system.

The first line of protection in barrier security are the locks and their effectiveness as a security barrier depends entirely on the small details of the installation. Burglar bars, window bars, security bars, different names same meaning are available over the counter or custom built in many shapes and sizes. Window bars are probably the best single investment of barrier security and because burglar bars have been used in the security system for thousands of years many examples of good design are readily available. Security bars are especially useful for protecting basement windows or for protecting windows in warehouses as they provide visual deterrence as well as providing barrier security. A visual display of security is very useful when planning a security system as opportunistic thieves can be easily persuaded to move elsewhere by carefully planned barrier security. As risk increases the security system becomes layered so that thieves are forced to spend valuable time after detection but before penetrating the barrier security to get to the reward. Planning and designing an effective security system is as much art as science, but more than anything else involves common sense and while there is temptation to rely on high technology the opposite is true. The best system is simple and relies heavily on barrier security with electronic systems as back up.

Is CCTV Video Equipment useful?

CCTV Video Equipment (other wise known as Closed Circuit Television) has been used for the purpose of security surveillance for many years.

CCTV Video Equipment differs from broadcast TV equipment as that every part is linked by cables or other direct means.

Closed Circuit Television is used by security teams most often where there is a high need for extra security measures. Most all banks, airports and many apartment complexes incorporate CCTV Video Equipment into their security programs. CCTV Video Equipment was originally developed to help strengthen security in banks however lately there has been some debate over privacy issues with the usage of Closed Circuit Television. As technology has advanced CCTV Video Equipment has become quite simple and inexpensive to use making it a popular choice for home security and for use in surveillance by many private investigators. The United Kingdom worked in developing CCTV Video Equipment systems as a result of terrorist bombings in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Today in England there are Closed Circuit TV equipment in many bus stations, public areas and apartment buildings. CCTV Video Equipment used in the United Kingdom has shown to have reduced the amount of crime in parking lots and also crimes against taxi drivers. The usage of CCTV Video Equipment in the United States in much less common then in the United Kingdom as it’s use tends to bring strong opposition because of privacy issues.

While some say that the use of CCTV Video Equipment does help to deter crimes from happening, CCTV Video Equipment’s most notable use is in the identification and prosecution of the criminals that are perpetrating the crimes. Closed Circuit TV has aided in the capture and prosecution of notable terrorist bombers and child abductors. Utilizing CCTV Video Equipment to track the whereabouts of abducted children has become quite commonplace with law enforcement agencies today. CCTV Video Equipment has also helped keep many law enforcement agencies in check. For instance Closed Circuit TV aided an dismissing some of the claims made by British police when Jean Charles de Menezes, who police officials claimed was responsible for bombing a London subway, was shot to death by police officers. CCTV Video Equipment is also proving to be useful on the roadways of both the United Kingdom and the United States. Closed Circuit Television can be used to monitor areas of possible traffic congestion and detect when an accident happens. They can also be used to identify and apprehend those breaking traffic laws such as speeding. While there has been some strong opposition against the overuse and misuse of CCTV Video Equipment systems, Closed Circuit TV has proven in many cases to be a very useful tool in assisting with keeping individuals safe and helping to apprehend those who commit crimes against others.

Better Hearing with Listening Devices

Of all of the ways that people can use listening devices, whether it is for fun, helping to detect problems with plumbing, pest control, covert operations, or keeping tabs on baby, one of the most important reasons for the use of listening devices is to just be able to hear with. That is hearing what the person standing across the room is saying to you. Hearing the timer go off on your stove so that your dinner or that cake you made doesn’t burn. Hearing what is being said on the TV without having to turn the sound up so loud that the whole neighborhood knows what you are watching. More importantly, so that a would be intruder, listening to that blaring TV, doesn’t know that you are hard of hearing and might not hear them breaking into your home until it is too late. Let’s face it, hearing aids, the type that are typically sold to people with hearing problems are expensive, very, very expensive. And if you don’t have health insurance that pays for the cost of these pricy devices, you may be living in a world of partial silence unnecessarily. There are listening devices on the market today like the dynamic new slim line SuperEar. What are so great about these devices are not only their high degree of sensitivity and their mere three-ounce weight, but the price is unbelievably listed at under a hundred dollars. That’s right! And these listening devices are so compact they can be easily stowed into a pocket or purse when you are not using them.

Having a dependable light source that isn’t going to fail at a vital moment is essential, especially as inclement weather sets in this time of year.

Winter emergencies can strike with little warning. It is therefore important that your home is prepared with the best lighting and survival tools possible. When it comes to a light source, it is important that it not only cast a strong light when you need it most but one that also has a variety of features to make sure that you’re never stranded in the dark during an emergency situation.

Consider purchasing an LED emergency lantern which produces a strong white LED light at a fraction of the energy cost of traditional light bulbs.

What’s So Great about LED An LED light like those available in emergency lanterns or flashlights are far superior to a standard incandescent flashlight. LED’s are not like traditional bulbs because they contain no glass casing or a filament. This means you don’t have to worry about the bulb breaking or the filament burning out at an inconvenient time. A white LED light will burn for years longer than a comparable white light bulb at a much lower energy cost. You may also find that manufactures will combine LED’s in a lantern or flashlight to produce a brighter light in the same amount of space as a standard bulb would be able to create. This is why you can find small LED flashlights that put out a great light than some larger traditional versions. Because multiple LED’s are used in these lights you are also generally able to use different light settings easily as well. The ability to dim an emergency lantern in the evening or at night at the push of a button is another great feature of a quality LED lantern. What to Look For There are a few key features you should make sure to pay attention to when you are purchasing your LED emergency lantern.

Look for a lantern that is convertible between a “lantern” mode and a “flashlight” mode. Also look for one that utilizes multiple LEDs. Depending on the size of the lantern, 8-12 bulbs are recommended. A hand crank to provide emergency power in case the batteries are low is a wonderful feature as is a rechargeable battery pack. As mentioned above, the ability to adjust the light intensity either through different settings or a dimmer switch is a practical feature that can ensure that your lamp can be used for both emergency situations as well as general outdoor use. Extra Bells and Whistles As always, there are some additional LED lantern options and features out there that may prove useful to you. Some come with built-in radio systems for listening to news or weather reports. Others have emergency road flare settings which blink orange or red lights should you keep the lantern in your outdoor survival kit or camping gear. As always, check out product reviews online and read about other users’ experience with lanterns with these features to see if they prove useful or not.

Regardless of the brand or style of LED emergency lantern you choose, it is important that your home have one in its emergency tool kit.

The value of having a dependable light source in any emergency situation is immeasurable when it comes to the safety and comfort of your home and family. – Ben Anton, 2007

Security In Your Home

Physical security is very important to a home owner. Your home is one of your most important possessions since this is where you and your loved ones reside. Once you know that your home is safe from intruders, you can rest assured that your material and personal possessions as well as your loved ones, are secured. There are several parts of your home that you need to secure by using electronic devices: – The perimeter of your house to prevent burglars from intruding on your home. – Enclosed areas within the house should be secured as well, in case of fire. – Your garage should also have an intruder alarm to protect your vehicles, aside from the anti-theft device on the car itself. It does not matter what style of life you lead. Home security should be and essential part of your budget to give you peace of mind. In addition to providing physical security in the home, your home security system should also help you find help should an emergency ensue. Here are some tips when planning for the security of your home: 1. Make an initial survey of your house and from there, develop a home security plan. Check all of the rooms and the area outside of your house.

Determine if the neighbors have a clear view of what is going on within your house. Having a very open area that can be easily observed by anyone from the outside may be a threat to your security. 2. When placing burglar alarms or intruder sensors, place them in strategic areas in and out of your house. Home security need not be expensive. You do not need to put in alarms and sensors on each and every part of the house. As long as they are installed on the proper places, then your house will be secured enough. 3. Review your way of living and the size of your family. Do you often have visitors who may roam around freely? Do you have a member of the family who may come inside the house in the middle of the night? These factors will help you decide on the “level” of security system that you will install on your home. 4. You can place sensors within your house. These sensors can be installed on windows to alarm you of intruders. In addition, you may install sensors within the house, specifically in hallways, to warn you of intruders within the house. 5. Place fire alarms in areas around the house which is most likely to gather heat or smoke. An unusual level of smoke, fire or heat can easily be detected to warn you of impending fire threats. 6. There are mechanical locks and sensors that you can install on doors for good measure. 7. For households with babies, you may purchase a baby monitor or a video surveillance. A video security system in your house will give you peace of mind. You may also “automate” your home, and watch your children from your TV screen so that you can keep track of what they are doing.

Whether you choose to install it yourself or get the services of a company which specializes in building security systems, home security should not be taken for granted. You should put in extra time and effort in order to ensure that you and your family have a happy and physically secure environment.

Finding a Physical Phone Tap

If you are worried that you have a phone tap problem, there are some ways to investigate the truth and try to find the tap. A physical phone tap is one that is actually present on your phone, or present somewhere along the phone wire. Usually someone somewhere has done something to allow their phone wires to share with yours, so that they can pick up their phone and listen to your conversation — an even possibly record it.

There are also transmitter taps that may be somewhere in your home and listening in.

For transmitter taps, a regular “bug sweep” ought to do the trick. But for a physical phone bug? You need to do a little hunting. The first likely physical phone tap is one that is actually attached somewhere to the wires in your house. This means that you will need to follow the wires from your phone to the jacks and also from the TNI box outside your house all the way into your home. Many of these wires go through the basement, and so you should check down there. Because there is the possibility that the physical tap could be in the wall, you might find that tearing up the wall is your only option. However, it would be very difficult for a tap to be put there without your knowledge, unless it happened during building. The TNI box mentioned above should also be checked. You can open it up and see if there is something unusual inside. If you want to double check the side of the box that says “restricted,” you will need an alan wrench. Luckily, these are available at most hardware stores. Thoroughly checking your TNI box is a good move, as this is a likely place for people to physically tap into your line without you noticing. Of course, if you are subject to a government phone tap, it does not really matter.

This is because the government uses the phone company’s switch. There is nothing anywhere near your house to tap into. You can escape a government tap by using a prepaid cell phone (a regular cell phone can be tapped the same way as a conventional phone) or a public pay phone, but it your land line tapped, there is no detecting a government phone tap. (c) 2005 Copyright This article is about: Phone Tap.

A Hidden Camera for Your Home

When you have small children and teenagers, a hidden camera or two about the house can be very useful. When children are small, it helps to ensure that they are protected from babysitters and nannies that might try to abuse them. As your children grow into teenagers, the hidden camera takes on a new mission: to make sure that they are obeying the rules, even when you are away from home. Many sitters and nannies feel that it is okay to abuse children to get them to behave. Others simply ignore small children, taking your money but not really taking care of the children.

Both of these scenarios are unacceptable. But how can you determine what goes on in your home while you are out? The simple solution is to have a hidden camera (or two or three) secreted about the house. Then you can see how the sitter treats your children. If it is bad, the hidden camera can serve as evidence if you wish to press charges or recover damages. Other parents worry about leaving their teenagers home by themselves. Will they have parties? Get into the liquor cabinet? Again, a hidden camera can help you keep tabs on what your kids do when you leave home. If you let them know that you do have cameras in the house, but do not tell them where, it is likely that they will be on better behavior while you are gone. And that is the beauty of the hidden camera. These devices are cleverly disguised as regular, normally functioning household items. Clocks, wall paintings, smoke detectors, and even can openers can all contain cameras while perfectly performing their regular functions. There are even clock radio alarms that will still wake you up (and that you can hit snooze on) and still record what is going on in the room. Additionally, there are plenty of listening devices that can also be disguised as regular items, and that can supplement the visuals you receive from the cameras. You can know exactly what is going on in your home when you have a hidden camera. (c) 2005 Copyright This article is about: Hidden Camera.

Three Vital Steps To Keeping Latchkey Kids Safe

© 2006, All Rights Reserved Watch the nightly news and you’ll quickly hear enough scary tales to make your skin crawl.

Kids that never made it home from school, emergencies happening that they weren’t equipped to handle and other disturbing problems that most parents don’t want to think about. The truth is, the only way to navigate around these horrors is for you and your kid(s) to think about them and to prepare for them. A lack of control is what makes most situations frightening. When you empower yourself and your children, you gain back control and are better equipped to overcome the circumstances at hand. Let’s look at the three areas where most problems occur for latchkey kids and how to ensure your children don’t fall victim.1. Know When Your Kid(s) Get Home– Make it a practice for your children to call you the minute they walk in the door. If they leave later (to go to a friend’s house or to play ball with the neighborhood crowd), repeat the routine. As soon as they get back, they should phone you. What if your kids simply don’t remember? There are many home security alarm systems equipped with automatic notification settings. This allows you to be sent a text message or email when your kids enter the house. That will certainly put an end to the «Sorry, Mom. I forgot!» excuse.2. Plan Ahead for Emergencies– Strangers ringing the bell, a cooking mishap that leads to fire or roughhousing that goes too far are all pathways to disaster. What would your child do in these instances? Would s/he know what to do? Could s/he handle the situation if no adults were around? Take time to write down then think through each type of emergency your child might encounter. If A happens, your child should know to do B. Then review the settings on your home security alarms. Many offer different programming options for various areas of your home. Does yours provide special settings to keep unwanted visitors out of the house? Can it automatically notify the proper authorities? Understanding what’s available to you can make all the difference in the world.

3. Have Help Available– Kids are still kids. Even with a great deal of planning, they may simply panic, especially if they are younger children. There should always be help available. Is there a neighbor close by you can trust? Do your parents live just a few minutes away? You’ll want to have an adult readily available and able to get to your house within a short period of time, just in case something drastic happens. Another option – for those that have home security alarms – is to enable the two-way communication feature. That way, without even picking up the phone, your kids can instantly speak with trained professionals about whatever type of emergency they are having. Plan, prepare, empower. When you take time to think through the scary stuff, you enable yourself and your child to create a substantially safer environment you’ll both feel better about.

Multiple Camera Hidden Digital Video Recorders

Crime is on the rise or so it seems. Whether you are operating your own business or just want to insure the safety of your own home, you may want to think long and hard about using hidden digital video recorders to keep an eye on things. If your business or home is fairly large, you know that you may need to have several hidden digital video recorders operating all at the same time.

Fortunately, there are several models of hidden digital video recorders that can operate numerous security cameras all at the same time. One unit in particular, allows you to connect up to eight cameras and has eight alarm inputs. The great part is that all eight cameras can be viewed on one monitor, so you don’t have to go broke building a wall of monitors to handle the job. Once an alarm goes off, the switcher will lock onto the camera covering the area where the alarm went off. And if more than one alarm sounds, it will switch automatically between the affected areas. You can also manually excluded unaffected cameras or lock the affected cameras so that you have a constant view of the trouble spot. There is also a nine camera version of these hidden digital video recorders that allows you to change setting from one, two, four or eight camera viewing, too. The system adjusts to your needs regardless of how many hidden digital video recorders you are using. Then if you need to expand your system, you don’t have to worry about purchasing another system, you are ready to go for up to nine cameras.

Secure Your Home without a Security System

The best way to secure your home is with a home security system, the only problem is they can run anywhere from a few hundred dollars, to thousands for all of the options that are now offered. The funny thing about home invasions is that they have not changed at all over the years. Criminals still use the same methods to break into your home now, as they always have. Statistics tell us that 63% of burglaries involve forcible entry, which means if you focus on protecting your home from forced entry, your odds of being burglarized drop dramatically. People that make a living burglarizing people, have three main enemies, time, light and noise. When you purchase a home security system, you create much larger enemies for burglars. If your system is monitored, the burglar knows that his time in your home has to be very fast, because the police are dispatched and on their way.

The noise that the alarm makes is enough to get them out of your house all by itself. Believe it or not most burglaries happen during the day, so the light factor does not mean what you think. Light really means exposure. If your criminal is exposed to your neighbors and or people walking by, chances are he will pick another target. What you need to do is address each one of a burgular’s enemies: 1 Purchase dead bolt locks for all entrances to your home. A good deadbolt will most certainly slow down a burglar, along with generating alot of noise from him trying to force the door open. 2 Replace the doors in the back of your house that have windows . This is probably the easiest way into your home. All a burglar has to do is break a small pane of glass and reach in and open the door. 3. Never leave a ladder in your back yard. Criminals know that second floor windows a rarely locked. 4 Trim the shrubs and bushes that guard first floor windows. If a burglar can be seen by the neighbors climbing in a window, chances are he will think twice. 5. Purchase motion sensor lights for any area outside the house that is in total darkness. 6 Always lock your doors, especially if you are home. Burglars always check to see if a door is locked before deciding on forced entry. The last thing you want is an unwelcome guest in your home just because you didn’t lock the door. (It happens more than you think).Secure Your Home

Bioterrorism Preparedness

Bioterrorism has a history like anthrax attacks and is the most dreadful of all the probable massacres by terrorists and prompts us to instantiate the first step in bioterrorism preparedness by choosing the right safety gear like gas masks for bioterrorism protection Despite the safety measures imposed by the government, bioterrorism is a reality and it is essential that citizens be prepared for possible attacks. Bioterrorism involves the use of harmful germs or other biological agents to create illness and fear among the general public. A number of biological weapons can be used in an attack of bioterrorism–most notably, many people are concerned with smallpox, anthrax, and ricin.

Some of these agents can be spread by people who have become infected, such as smallpox. Others, such as anthrax, only pose a threat to those who come in direct contact with them. Many of these agents can cause infection via inhalation. If there have been news advisories either on television or the radio, you can increase your safety and that of your family by wearing gas masks during reported bioterrorism attacks. You should always be careful when you receive mail from an unknown sender, as biological weapons such as anthrax can be delivered by such means. The FBI recommends that you check the postmark on any package you were not expecting to see if it is from a foreign country.