A thief's motivation and weakness is their avarice. Thieves go through a cycle of desire and greed that drives every heist and attempted break-in. Locks are essential — they increase the difficulty of a theft and make the prize less worthwhile. But a thief doesn't attempt to steal what they do not know exists. This is known as security through obscurity, and you can use it to theft-proof your home. If a thief doesn't understand your lock, they can't pick it. If they can't find the lock, they can't force or break it, and if they don't know you have valuables, they won't try to steal them.
Security through obscurity has been a valuable policy throughout history. The perfect way to defend your home and the valuables within is through a combination of physical security and clever obscurity. Safes, sturdy cabinets, and good locks can stop a thief who has accessed your home, and obscurity can prevent a thief from finding or targeting hidden valuables once inside.
We're here to share a few clever and secure ways to theft-proof your home.
1. Secure Your Locks
First and foremost, make sure your locks are adequately strong and complex. While we have many clever ideas to keep thieves from accessing or even noticing your valuables, the best defense is a solid physical barrier between thieves and their prize. Don't rely on simple locks or locks made with lightweight materials. Also, remember that no matter how strong your lock is, the frame and latch must be equally strong to prevent forced entry.
2. Try the Disguised Container Trick
The most classic version of security through obscurity is the old hollow book or fake soup can trick. If you don't have a good safe or locking jewelry box for small valuables, they can be hidden from the avaricious eyes of thieves by making valuable items look like everyday items instead. You — or perhaps a parent or grandparent — may already have an old Campbell's Tomato Soup safe: a heavy hollow can with a fake bottom that unscrews to store a few small valuables. While these disguised containers rarely sport good locks, the theory works doubly well for disguised furniture and hidden compartments in your home that can be reinforced like a safe and securely locked to theft-proof your home.
3. Use a Fold-Away Vanity With a Hidden Jewelry Box
You don't have to keep your valuables in a soup can to keep them hidden. A beautiful jewelry box is a tempting target, but you can hide that box conveniently and casually with a fold-away vanity. These Murphy-style dressing tables can be beautiful when folded out and displaying your jewelry box, hanging necklaces, and expensive cosmetics. When folded away, the underside may appear to be a lovely built-in shelf with a few (fastened) decorations on the shelves. A thief will never know that your most precious daily gems are locked behind a knick-knack display or small bookshelf.
4. Install a Secure Armoire Gun Cabinet
Guns are another item often targeted and stolen — especially as thefts of opportunity when a home is already invaded. Not only are guns valuable, but they are also dangerous in criminal hands. Keep your gun collection safe with a locking safe that doesn't look like a gun cabinet. Armoires are old-fashioned cabinets for clothing, linens, or dishes, and many homes have an armoire as a family heirloom or to match a rustic decor style.
An armoire is also the perfect shape to disguise your well-secured guns with an upper locking cabinet for long guns and drawers designed to hold ammo and handguns below. This locking cabinet will look like a perfectly normal piece of furniture and avoid the interest of dangerous thieves.
5. Keep a Hidden Household Safe
You can also have a traditional safe installed in your home, but don't put it in an obvious place. Also, make sure it is absolutely stationary. Thieves who know you have a safe will go in ready to either crack your combination or simply carry your safe away. The key, therefore, is to make sure thieves never even encounter your safe.
Don't put it under the bed or in your closet. Instead, theft-proof your home by having the safe installed in the wall or floor and disguise the access as another type of furniture. A sliding or swinging bookshelf, for example, can excellently disguise a wall safe. Thieves will never think to look behind furniture that seems too heavy to move when you need to grab the family passports.
If you are worried about thieves in your home or targeting your home for a heist, we can help. Murphy-style installations allow you to create secure, locking, and well-disguised places to store your valuables and even enjoy having them on display when you are home. Contact us today to find out more!