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House Alarms: Pointless nuisance or valuable security asset?

Discussion in 'Serious' started by Guest-16, 24 Jun 2006.

  1. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    The idea of a house alarm is to attract attention. Any thief/burglar is reluctant to break into a house that screams, not because they expect people to intervene or call the cops, but because they expect people to turn around and look, and thus see them, which makes them unwelcome eye witnesses later when the house owners have returned and called the police.

    Most burglaries are, by their nature, opportunistic crimes because you don't know what you'll get for your efforts until you are actually inside the house. Rich pickings are only guaranteed in difficult, risky (guarded, alarmed and secured) targets, which requires skill and preparation, so burglary is usually about easy targets with small returns. Statistics also show that most burglaries are committed within 2-5 miles of the burglar's own home: again, opportunism.

    Petty opportunist criminals tend to live on poor estates (only very successful criminals live in affluence). As such the target of opportunistic burglaries tend to be other poor estate homes, where the pickings are very slim. Dumb, petty opportunist criminals also have little knowledge of what is truly valuable, and are interested only in items that are easily fenced. Expensive jewelry is distinctive and thus hard to fence. Art and clothes are not very popular and hard to fence. Consumer electronics and tools are good, but ubiquitous and a fence will pay little for those (and a big screen TV is really awkward to carry). Money is paydirt, but who has several thou lying about in the house? Passports, credit cards and ID are good, but again, to turn these into good profit often requires specialist connections. And a petty criminal will not have those.
     
  2. fathom17

    fathom17 New Member

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    Well my neighbours house alarm went off, which didn't normally. I called the police and they asked me if there was anyone in the house 'i didn't know'. So i didn't come out and then when they come back from holiday, the neighbours had a tv stolen. Aren't police great!!!
     
  3. specofdust

    specofdust Banned

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    We need to be allowed to arm ourselves in this damn country. With the police being as useless as they are, citizens should at least be allowed to protect themselves and their property.
     
  4. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    Rather not. People are too stupid to own guns.
     
  5. Krikkit

    Krikkit All glory to the hypnotoad! Super Moderator

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    Bingo. People are dangerous enough with knives and blunt objects, I'd rather not see them allowed to use guns for "self-defence".

    House alarms are a bit of a double-edged sword, on one hand they can deter some criminals, and when they go off they make people look and pay attention, on the other hand, they're irritating, and false alarms mean people get complacent once it goes off and do nothing.
    Around here, people have an incredibly irritating device, attatched to the outside of the house which is a bit like an air-raid siren. It simply wails at a piercing level until someone switches it off. The only problem is that you can't tell where it's coming from, and it's irritating not being able to get away from a noise like it.
     
  6. Pal_Mal

    Pal_Mal New Member

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    My Nans house insists upon it as a requirement of the the insurance , it has to be serviced at least once a year. It's also got a LCD display and a clock with a log so the police / insurance can tell if the system has been set when a break in has taken place , - no alarm set - no Insurance! She still doesn't set it though!

    Most of the alarms that go off in the dead of the night are ones that are not serviced, alarms like cars need to be serviced once a year. A lot of them go off as the backup battery inside them has died as they have to be changed once every 5 years, so when the mains dies (powercut or whatever ) this kicks in the backup battery in the outside siren!
     
  7. specofdust

    specofdust Banned

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    If the police can't protect people then someone needs to, and there are serious cases where the police are failing...
     
  8. Colonel Sanders

    Colonel Sanders Active Member

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    I think that best sums up my opinion of alarms in general. For a car, the loud approach works 'cause if someone accidentally sets off their car alarm, they will find a way to make it stop going off before they start driving off. A thief would have to find a way to make the alarm stop or draw a lot of attention driving a vehicle with the alram going off.

    For house, I'd prefer the silently calling the cops approach, and burglar resistant windows and locks. I think the problem with a loud alarm is that there would be very little chance of catching the burglar- he could get away with something expensive. In most neighborhoods I've been in, they tend to stay empty most of the day, people are gone at work, and then they come home and go straight inside their house. If they heard a house alarm going off, they would have to go outside to look which I think most people don't care to do. The burglar would start running off, he may or may not be seen by all the neighbors, most of the neighbors won't remember anything about the burglar except the fact he had a TV in hands as he was running out the door. . .

    L J
     
  9. merlin 65

    merlin 65 New Member

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    i find 2 rottweillers are a much better deterant than my alarm is , a few years back i found three teenagers in my loft screaming for help they had been there at least 24 hours and the police and myself couldnt stop laughing when one came down the ladder and had deficated himself a number of times by the looks of things lol
     
  10. c@r

    c@r New Member

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    BUt seriously, guns?? I can't think of anything more terrifying than some idiot with a gun who thinks he's on a mission to protect. Police included to be honest.

    I may have this wrong, but it seems to me that having fairly liberal gun law just means more people die of gunshot wounds. A bad thing. It doesn't seem to reduce crime- if punishment/threat to life/personal injury was a deterrent you'd think by now we'd be living in a crime free society (after all we've been trying different deterrents for thousands of years, and yet we still have crime).

    Also, who's failing? Is it the police? Or is it factors that make people think crime is a viable and acceptable way to make a living? Or is it the individual who's committing the crime?
     
  11. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    There are serious cases in which the police couldn't handle guns safely. I don't see untrained civilians do any better. And then there is the escalation effect: if the home owner has a gun, the mugger or burglar makes darn sure he has a bigger one.

    Given all the instances of road rage, neighbourhood feuds and punch-ups in the street on Friday/Saturday nights (or after a footbal match), I really don't think people should own firearms.
     
  12. specofdust

    specofdust Banned

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    That doesn't appear to be the case in any european countries, many of which have gun control as lax as the US.

    It is possible to reward maturity(through allowance) while punishing immaturity and stupidity.
     
  13. DXR_13KE

    DXR_13KE BananaModder

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    the police around here are useless and there is rarely a police on the streets, we have an advantage of being an island and eveyone knows everyone and has lots of friends and contacts :D but i dont see people with guns around here, it would be utter madness, expecialy in the continental Portugal were there are tons of gangs and the police are being killed left and right, now imagine if weapons were legal like in the USA, our police cant use their weapons, they must shoot twice to the air then shot at the criminal in a non fatal location, they can only shoot the criminal if he is a treat to other people or to the agent and if he has some kind of knife or firearm, the police agent must pay for the hospital bills of the criminal if he shoots him and needs to go to court, if a police agent screws a police car or his uniform in some fight or chase he must pay for it. I LOVE MY COUNTRY!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  14. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    I beg to differ... but I'll try and dig up some comparable statistics on burglary in the US (home owners with guns) and the UK (home owners without).

    That's why I think people should not have guns. ;)
     
  15. specofdust

    specofdust Banned

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    I don't know if you misinterpreted what I said, or vice versa, or whatever. Regardless, I was saying "look at europe, places like France, Switzerland, Germany, they all have much laxer gun laws then the UK, and they don't have violent crime rates 5x time the UK"(that is a uniquely US issue). The US is the oddball, they have issues with violent crime. If you want to compare to relatively similar nations with and without guns try the UK and Germany, or the UK and France.


    Because people who abuse them will end up in Prison while those who use them safely or correctly get not to? I'm under no illusions, I know violent crime isn't a big issue, I just think given that the police are a reactive force(slowly at that) which they should be(although they should actually turn up when called), people should be allowed to protect themselves and their property. The floridans are right on the money with their defense laws.
     
    Last edited: 26 Jun 2006
  16. supermonkey

    supermonkey Deal with it

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    I think it's kind of interesting that in these debates, guns and protection always go hand-in-hand. People are alloowed to protect themselves. I can't think of a single place that has a law against protecting yourself.

    Whether or not that protection involves firearms is another matter. If you wake up to find a prowler in your home, a baseball bat or other "weapon" offers as much protection as a gun. Statistically speaking, I believe the majority of people are more likely to miss their intended target when shooting. In that vein, a heavy, blunt object (like a frying pan) might offer more protection.

    In my opinion, the correct course of action is to call the police, grab a "weapon" and sit tight. Chasing after the crook is a good way to get yourself (or a loved one) hurt. All in the name of protection.

    Just my 2¢
    monkey
     
  17. merlin 65

    merlin 65 New Member

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    i have to admit to the baseball bat at the side of the bed , but if firearms were involved mistakes could be made very easily , i mean how many times have we came home a lot drunk fell over making a hell of a noise now if this was added to a jumpy firearm owner shooting blidly in the dark it could be catastrofic and if im not mistaken this has happened in the past some dad shot his kid who had forgot his door keys and was climbing through the window
     
  18. dom_

    dom_ --->

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    Going back to the police not turning up quickly to alarms linked to a call centre...

    If your willing get a "red" phone line from BT which can only make out going calls to one number and is backed up so wont go down. Then if you use a proper alarm company who deal with commercial companies (jewellers etc) you will have the police around quickly.
    Although this all comes at a price and is only worth having if you need it.

    So the point is, if you need the protection an alarm brings, it is there.

    The common use though is just to make you the one who gets ignored, while your neighbours get robbed instead.

    One simple form of protection is to go around your house in the mind set of a burglar.
    Got a ladder lying in the garden or in an open shed?
    Valuables visible as you walk down the street?
    Low fence or climbable fence into a secluded garden?
    etc etc.
    Make the burglar walk on rather than take a second look at your house.
     
  19. cpemma

    cpemma Ecky thump

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    I wouldn't describe the Swiss system as "lax", though laxer than the UK is true.

    In Switzerland around two-thirds of all male citizens and some women do 9 months military service and are trained to use a gun. After service they used to (until 2004?) still be on reserve for several years and keep their uniform, weapon and ammunition at home. Switzerland can mobilise a large army overnight. They treat their neutrality seriously.

    The vast majority of Swiss home guns are "long guns", ie, rifles, not handguns. Target shooting is a popular sport, but very regulated. You can't just go out with your pals to a nearby field, must be on an approved shooting range, and you can't carry a loaded gun or transport ammunition (but that at the range is government-subsidised).

    It's a different mentality, no "right to bear arms" crap. There's no comparison with the USA attitude to guns and no NRA lobby.

    One point on the topic - suppose one of those Asian youths in Forest Gate, London had grabbed his gun when they thought intruders had broken in? By your argument he'd be fully justified, but very dead.
     
  20. specofdust

    specofdust Banned

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    Possibly, but if rifles were more legal in this country so would the officer who went in first and shot the guy without any warning(And yes, I do think that would be desereved). The police need to cut that crap out, and losing people to justified fire would guarentee we didn't get any more "oops, forgot to say we were police" events.

    I can't say I'd entirely disagree with widespread military service. I guess I'm a bit of a conspiracy theorist mixed with a a self-righteous militarist, but I strongly feel that a citizens primary defense should be themselves, that should be allowed and encouraged. Defense on all levels that is, be it from mugging, murder, or invasion by a foreign military. Police exist to investigate and prosecute criminals and their crimes. The simple fact that they cannot be everywhere means they're going to be fairly useless against any immediate crime.

    From what I understand of many european countries, guns are common in the home. The UK seems to be the anomaly in that respect, and I'm not sure it's a good thing.

    Btw, Cpemma, are you from Switzerland? You seem to know a fair bit specifically about it, just curious :p
     

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