Top Ten Stolen Items from a Burglary
If you’ve been the victim of a burglary, you know how quickly and easily they can get away with your valuables. Burglars aim for easy to grab items that are left out or not attached to anything. There are items that burglars look for when it comes to their selection though. Below is the top ten items most likely to be stolen during a burglary:
10. Household Items and Furniture: Over the last few years, the percentage of furniture stolen has drastically risen. This could be because of the recent economic downturn. In 2007 only 1% of homeowners reported furniture was stolen. Last year, that number was at 10%.
9. Car Keys: Very often your car keys are left out allowing them to be easily taken. Even if they don’t take your car now, they may come back later so be careful to hide your keys and get your locks replaced immediately if the keys are stolen.
8. Food: Another sign of the economy, many burglars are breaking into your home looking for their next meal. Obviously hiding food can be difficult so prevent burglars from coming in to begin with.
7. CDs, Tapes, Videos, DVDs: The percentage reporting media theft has dropped in recent years from 24% in 2004 to 10% in 2010. This is due to the rising use of digital media and the depreciating value of physical media. If you have a nice stack of CDs or DVDs out, they may only take those if they have an extra hand.
6. Handbag, Briefcase, Shopping Bags: Think of this like the mystery prize. They may not look to see what’s inside but they’ll grab it on the off-chance that there is something valuable inside like a computer or your wallet. Consider hiding these while you’re home.
5. Cell Phone: These can fetch a high price for a burglar. Smartphones like iPhones and Android phones can fetch a healthy reward for a burglar so don’t leave these out in plain sight when your home or while they’re charging.
4. Jewelry: This one goes without saying. Jewelry maintains its high value because the price for gold, silver and platinum has never been higher. Many burglars do not value the jewelry as-is so they scrap the metals for cash. Be sure to hide these in hard-to-remove places like a mounted safe instead of obvious places like your underwear and sock draws.
3. Computers: Even with the low cost of computers, they’re still valuable to thieves looking to make a quick buck. In some cases, smarter thieves have been known to hack the computer to steal your personal information. If it’s a desktop, mount it to the desk so it cannot be stolen. For portable computers, be sure to hide these and always encrypt your files and your logins.
2. Electrical Goods and Cameras: Items like TVs, iPads, cameras, etc. are all very valuable and your would-be thief is likely to make a grab for your new plasma TV or that new SLR camera. Be sure to mount these items down or lock them away safely.
1. Purse, Wallet, Money, Etc.: Over 41% of homeowners reporting this stolen during a burglary. There is nothing like grabbing a wallet with cash in it since they don’t have to risk selling the items. Even more dangerous is many people carry multiple credit cards, their social security card, and other information making identity theft easy for any burglar. Limit the number of things you carry in your wallet and always hide your wallet when you’re home.
Now that you know the targeted items in your home, you can prevent their theft by hiding these items, securing them to their locations or plainly preventing a break-in with increased home security measures. If you’re the victim of a burglary while it is in progress, let them take the items. It is not worth risking your life over a $200 iPhone. Always know where everything was and track any serial numbers so it can be reported to the police.