Fake Security: Criminals Are Smarter Than You Think

People are often duped into buying counterfeit products they think are real. A look at the top-10 list of fakes shows that many fakes can be deadly. Would you feel comfortable driving down the highway at 75 mph if you knew that your tires or some components of your airbag or braking system were cheaply made fakes that could fail at any time? Aerospace fakes are also on the most-popular list. How do you feel about flying in a plane that has inferior fake parts in its engines, wings or stabilizers?

Fake pharmaceuticals are also popular with counterfeiters, and pharmacists are unable to know for certain if what they’re selling is a real medication or something useless at best or fatal at worst.

As a savvy consumer, you wouldn’t knowingly spend money on counterfeit junk, right? Most times, the fakes are so cheaply made, anyone can spot them. And experts can always tell the difference, usually at a glance.

Why, then, do so many people think they’re getting away with something when they knowingly buy fake home security items? Consumers can be forgiven when they unwittingly buy counterfeit items, thinking they’re buying the real thing. However, when it comes to yard signs, window decals, or surveillance cameras, many consumers spend money on items sold at reputable stores, yet clearly marketed and labeled as fakes. Let’s look at a few of these items.

Fake Yard Signs

Fake Yard Signs

Most times, when a company installs a home security system, they’ll put a sign on the front lawn, which serves two purposes: it lets criminals know that they should look elsewhere for a home to rob, and it advertises the security company to the neighborhood. Consumers recognized long ago that they could eliminate the costlier side of home security—the actual security part—by simply putting a sign in the front lawn. It’s cheap, it’s easy, and burglars aren’t too smart, so the sign will certainly fool them. Is that true? Most experts say no.

Signs can be purchased online or from big-box home stores. Prices at around $10 for a generic sign that is so obviously not from a reputable security company you’d be better off with nothing. Why?

Protect the Outside

  • Outside cameras with night vision will not only deter crime, but can detect criminals before they get inside. Via phone or tablet, landlords can see what’s happening on the property in real time and get alerts with smart clip capture, while continuous recording saves it all.
  • Glass break detectors are also a good idea, alerting the owner to everything from an intruder to little Howard across the street who just hit a baseball through your picture window. In the event of glass breakage, the landlord is notified and a central monitoring station can dispatch police.
  • Smart door locks are also helpful, letting owners remotely check the door lock status and receive immediate notification of security issues via email or text.

Protect the Inside

  • Smoke detectors and heat sensors that can dispatch the fire department are crucial. Vacant building fires are a huge problem, resulting in $710 million in property damage each year. Half of the fires occurring in vacant buildings are intentionally set. The rest are usually the result of careless squatters using candles or building fires on which to cook.
  • FireFighter is a sensor that works with existing smoke and fire detectors by hearing the smoke alarm and notifying the monitoring station. The monitoring station will then notify the landlord and fire department.
  • Indoor wireless IP cameras on a camera stand, one in each room, can be monitored on a phone or tablet. Landlords will want the security that a good indoor camera offers, including night vision and two-way audio, but it should be a camera that will be easy to remove when the property is rented.
  • Motion sensors will notify landlord of any movement. With an incredible range, one sensor in each room will protect the entire home.

After It’s Rented

A security system is an amenity that renters love because it makes them feel safe in new surroundings. There is, however, a fine line between tenants feeling safe and tenants feeling like they are the ones being surveilled.

Landlords are within their rights to keep outdoor cameras and detectors active. Usually, tenants appreciate the added security of having night-vision cameras trained on entryways, driveways, and hidden areas where burglars could lurk unseen.

Tenants who view this as a violation of their privacy may feel that way because they have a lot of guests who pop in and out all through the night, they have a lot of parties that spill out onto the front lawn and driveway, or they have a lot of old junk cars parked around the property.

The rental property is still owned by the landlord, and the landlord has every reason to want to protect the property from damage by criminals or tenants.

When it comes to the protecting the inside of the home, an alarm system provides tenants with peace of mind, and makes your rental attractive to potential tenants. When it comes to installing a security system inside a rental, property owners have a couple of options.

Owner Options

Legally, both landlord and tenant must agree to the use of indoor surveillance cameras, and no tenant is going to agree to being spied upon in the sanctity of their domicile.

Landlords can provide tenant-controlled surveillance to renters; however, the downside is that if an emergency should arise that demands that a landlord enter a residence, and the tenant hasn’t provided the landlord with the correct security code to disable the system, the police could soon be at the door.

Additionally, providing security to forgetful or careless tenants could be costly. Today’s security systems almost never malfunction and send a false alarm on their own. But people sometimes forget to disarm their system upon entering their home or improperly secure windows or doors, causing a false alarm. If a landlord is shown as the system’s owner, it could mean every time a tenant causes a false alarm, the landlord will have to pay increasingly hefty fines.

Keeping Everyone Safe and Happy

Property owners can keep their tenants happy by putting renters in charge of their own security inside the property. Landlords can have the equipment—indoor cameras, motion and glass sensors, smart door locks—ready to install once tenants agree to keep the landlord up to date on the entry code in case of an emergency.

Landlords have a right to safeguard their property and tenants have a right to safeguard their loved ones and belongings. It shouldn’t be difficult to find a happy medium that keeps everyone safe and happy.

If you own a rental property, are thinking of investing in one, or are renting a home, contact Connect Security. We have almost unlimited options to satisfy landlords and tenants alike.

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