22 Comments

Burglary is a big problem in Australia, with the number of dwellings being targeted increasing all the time as crooks get more brazen and sophisticated.

Of course, there are various deterrents that can be utilised to lower the risk, including that of having a dog, CCTV cameras, an alarm product or… A fake security system that makes it look as if your house is armed – that’ll have the same effect, won’t it?

Well, apparently not. Because, believe it or not, you’re not the first to mount a fake security system – dummy CCTV camera or alarm box on your property. And the thieves know it. In fact, it’s such a common occurrence that not only are career criminals a dab hand at spotting them, but having such a product actually makes your property more of a temptation.

A Fake security system doesn’t deter, it actively attracts unwanted attention

The thing is, the bad guys make their living from spotting houses or businesses that have weak security. Having a fake security system doesn’t fool them – these guys KNOW it’s not real. But not only that, it sends a clear message that the property is likely to be weakly secured in other aspects too, so making it more likely to be targeted.

After all, if you’re trying to cut corners with a fake security system, what else have you sacrificed in an attempt to save money? Are the locks sub-standard? Do you fail to lock valuables away? Are you the kind of person who leaves a spare key under a rock by the door?

In fact, the survey ‘Reports of burglary by DUMA detainees in WA AIC, 2014’ showed that not only do the criminals know all about fake security systems, cameras and alarms, but that they provide no deterrent whatsoever.

Cheap systems are also a target

Perhaps even worse, poorly made, cheap security systems don’t work either, with robbers happy to tear them from their mounts, rendering them useless, before happily entering the property and helping themselves to anything on offer.

For those who assume that this couldn’t possibly apply to their system, consider these facts unearthed in a report by the Security Research Centre:

  • 46% of alarm panels had sensors that fail to provide adequate supervision
  • 18% of control panels were improperly located and therefore easily targeted and sabotaged by thieves.
  • 15% of alarm panels are located right at the access/egress point meaning they could be disarmed before the system detected unauthorised entry.
  • Many security installers don’t comply to, or fully understand, the applied Australia Standard 2201.
  • The industry’s own licensing regime fails to provide adequate compliance of alarm system installers.
  • The security industry currently fails to maintain its own self-regulated compliance standards.

Whatever way you look at it, this makes for pretty shocking reading. In short, fake or inadequate security systems are as bad, or even worse, than having no alarm system at all! Add in the fact that many suppliers are either unqualified or fail to understand their obligations in the first place, not to mention that most customers wouldn’t know what’s required in a legitimate system, and it’s a full-on recipe for disaster.

Choose your system (and installer) with care

Over the last few years, there’s been a massive rise in cheap, DIY security systems on the market. But, as with pretty much everything in life, you get what you pay for. In the case of a fake security system, dummy alarms, cameras or self-assembly models, it appears that it’s certainly a case of ‘buyer beware’.

The key to a quality security system is to purchase from a professional, trusted source, and take expert advice as to the system that best suits your property.

Do you have a security system in place in your home? Tell us in the comments below.

  • Was always told that laws and security systems only keep the honest people honest, but if you have nothing in the first place, if any thief breaks in then there is nothing there for them and they are very welcome to my TV in my lounge – took 3 people to bring it in and install it and I don’t want to touch it other with the remote.

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  • I was once told that security (being cameras, alarms, locks, big dogs etc) only keep the honest out. Now I fully believe that. If someone wants to get into your home uninvited, they will, regardless of the security measures you put in place

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  • this is good information and food for thought.

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  • I have an alarm system and window locks and prayer

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  • I know a few people with security cameras installed and we are looking into getting some ourselves. I’m not sure I wholeheartedly agree with all the info in this article though. Most burglaries today are committed by drug addicts, desperate to get money for their next fix. I doubt they would be capable of thinking about fake or real security systems, they probably don’t care!

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  • This makes a lot of sense. I like señsor lights – cheap but quite effective.

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  • Yep we have camera’s because we live right next door to a park, light sensors too – so walk past my house and my lights will turn on! Property is not accessible due to security gates, intercom & if you get past ALL of that you can meet our friendly dog :)

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  • I have a dog who knows when someone is walking across the road. She is my personal alarm system. I do agree though it’s better to pay for the real thing than waste money on a fake alarm

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  • We have the real thing.

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  • Would rather the real thing. Shame we even have to worry about this stuff.

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  • So damned if you do and damned if you don’t. We have external security cameras that we’ve viewed a number of times now to help others in our neighbourhood.

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  • We’re renting at the moment but as soon as we buy we may be placing security


    • It probably also depends on which area you’re living, some area’s have a higher crime rate then other area’s

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  • Very interesting read! It does stand to reason that they would look different to real ones and I guess cheap ones may be faulty. Will definitely be sharing this on

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  • We have a real one including cameras that notify hubby by phone every time something sets one off.

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  • That’s so scary and also sad that the crime rate is increasing!
    We don’t have anything at the moment but we’re definitely looking for the right one.

    Reply

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