Residents are being warned that burglars know the price of everything and the value of nothing, and will be on the lookout for rich pickings this Christmas time.

xmas_postcard_frt_0With Christmas shopping now in full swing and Christmas trees being put up across the county, people living in West Yorkshire are being reminded to not forget their home security this festive season.

Force Crime Prevention Officer Chris Joyce said: “We want this to be a very merry Christmas for members of the public across West Yorkshire, but I really want to take the opportunity to remind people how important it is to keep their home secure.

“Burglars on the whole look for opportunities when they are out and about – an open window, an unlocked door, a house in complete darkness and attractive items on view through windows.  At this time of year people may be out at work dos, late night shopping, carol concerts and other events, and it’s vital that homes are left looking occupied during such absences.

“The festive season also sees people spending a lot of hard earned money on Christmas presents for family and friends.  I would encourage people not to put presents under the tree before it is absolutely necessary – items that have taken a lot of saving up for may be very attractive to a burglar and could net them a few quid.  Coming home to find that presents for or from your family and friends have been stolen would be absolutely heart breaking, and something that nobody should have to go through.

“We are urging residents to consider what the true cost of burglary would be to them and take some simple steps to reduce their chances of a burglar ruining their Christmas.  Crime prevention doesn’t have to cost a lot of money, it could be a change of habit that assists in reducing the opportunity of burglary happening at your property – crime prevention is everyone’s business.”

  • Always keep doors and windows locked, remove the keys from the lock and don’t leave them on view.
  • Use timer switches on lights to keep your home looking occupied when you are out.
  • Don’t put Christmas presents under the tree before you need to.
  • Ensure valuables are not left on show – i.e. laptops, tablets, phones and put the charger/power cables out of view.
  • Take packaging from Christmas gifts to be recycled, don’t advertise what you’ve got to burglars

Further advice is available via the West Yorkshire Police website athttp://www.westyorkshire.police.uk/burglary or by contacting your local Crime Prevention Officer on 101.