The Master Locksmiths Association – the leading trade association for the locksmithing profession – has issued winter security advice to homeowners and vehicle owners, as latest Office of National Statistics (ONS) crime statistics show an increase in police reported cases of theft and burglary.
The ONS crime statistics for the year ending June 2017 reveal an increase in the number of reported burglaries and motor vehicle theft.
Whilst cases of theft and robbery have fallen substantially over the last decade, the total number of theft offences recorded by police to June 2017 increased to 1,940,040, an 11 per cent rise on the same period last year.
This includes an increase in reported cases of burglaries, up 6 per cent compared with the previous year, from 398,330 to 423,137 offences.
Theft of a motor vehicle rose 22 per cent to 102,726 offences, theft from a vehicle rose 14 per cent to 269,028 offences and bicycle theft rose 19 per cent to 100,788 compared to the same period last year.
With dark winter nights upon us, the Master Locksmiths Association – the leading trade association for the locksmithing profession – is highlighting the need for homeowners and vehicle owners to review their security.
Commenting on the news, Dr Steffan George, managing director of the Master Locksmiths Association said: “Whilst levels of theft are much lower than a decade ago, we are continuing to see increases in the number of reported cases in recent years.
“With over half a million homes burgled and over 250,000 cases of theft from a vehicle in the last year, it’s vital that homeowners and vehicle owners take a number of simple steps to improve their security and deter would-be thieves. If in doubt, seek advice from a trusted and experienced professional.
“MLA locksmiths are independently vetted and inspected and many will be able to perform a complete security assessment of your home and vehicle free of charge.”
The Master Locksmiths Association has also issued the following advice to help individuals keep their home, vehicle and belongings as safe and secure as possible over the winter months:
Always ensure your house is properly secured and all doors and windows are locked, 30 per cent of burglaries occur via unlocked front doors whilst 26 per cent via open or unlocked windows.
Check that all locks are correctly fitted and functioning, a local expert locksmith, such as an MLA approved company, will be able to check your locks and upgrade them if necessary.
If your home is being left empty, don’t make it obvious, 60 per cent of burglaries take place between 6pm and 6am and often when the homeowners aren’t home.