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Have a Safe Valentine’s Day!

home security monitoring

A romantic candlelit dinner and the roar of a fire often accompany Valentine’s Day, but many focus on making an evening as romantic as possible and forget simple safety needs. Before you invite the significant over for a wonderful evening or surprise your wife with a lovely dinner, however, take a few moments to review these special Valentine’s Day safety tips.

Sizzling Romance

Something as innocent as a backyard heat lamp that keeps the porch warm during an intimate dinner may become a fire hazard if it’s not secured properly. Likewise, those tapered candles that flicker around the room could catch fire when placed too close to flammable items.

In your zeal to create the most romantic atmosphere possible, don’t forget the following fire safety rules:

• Never place candles near flammable sources.

• Make sure the fireplace is clean if you haven’t used it recently.

• Secure all sources of flame or heat, so they won’t tip over.

• Stay in the kitchen while cooking and never leave appliances alone.

Though you’ll likely be distracted by the love of your life, try to remember basic kitchen safety guidelines such as keeping loose clothing and hair away from the burners, and keeping hot grease away from water.

Love = Security

Surprising your loved one with a Valentine’s Day sojourn is a wonderful way to show you care, but if you’re going to be gone for a few days or overnight, make sure your home is protected. Whether you reside in a simple apartment home or live in a magnificent mansion, some type of home security monitoring is advisable.

For example, a small apartment might benefit from alarms that alert you when a door opens where you’ll get a signal sent to your smartphone or the security company will call you. Single-family structures with yards and garages may benefit from CCTV installation that can keep an eye on the exterior of the residence. You don’t want to return from your Valentine’s Day cruise to find that all your electronics have been stolen.

E-Romance

Buying your lover’s chocolates or flowers online is a real timesaver for busy spouses, but before you go searching for gifts on the Internet, make sure your computer is secure with virus protection software. Also, protect your credit card information by purchasing only from reputable websites and sites with an https:// in front of their Web address.   

Millions of people buy gifts online but there are also a lot of ways to get scammed. If something seems strange or off, there’s a good chance that there’s a scam involved. Remember these simple online rules:

• Make sure websites are legitimate

• Update your virus software regularly

• Don’t reveal too much about yourself online

Don’t let security issues prevent a wonderful Valentine’s Day experience. Paying a little attention to safety and security will help ensure this special day is romantic and not catastrophic.

Costly Security Issues for Businesses

Keeping costs down and budgeting wisely is important for all businesses, but many companies neglect security and pay the consequences of higher operating costs and hassles with theft. Security issues may cause far more problems than just higher costs. Company reputation and employee safety may be compromised if the business doesn’t pay close attention to issues like cyber crime, employee theft and physical security.

security alarm monitoring

When surveyed about the worst security threats businesses face today, security professionals were quick to point to the following threats as some of the most severe:

• Cyber security

• Employee theft

• Property crime

• Substance abuse

• Workplace violence

Additionally, some respondents to the survey even suggested that issues like terrorism, bomb threats, kidnapping and labor unrest were on the radar as modern security problems. With so many threats facing the average business, creating a comprehensive security program might seem like a full-time job for a small company that doesn’t have significant financial resources.

Dealing with Employee Theft

Many businesses choose CCTV installation as a way to reduce theft, but unfortunately these surveillance cameras are often required due to employee theft. One recent survey of companies suggested that at least 68 percent of those who responded had experienced some type of employee theft. Annual losses were pegged at around $10,000.

Commercial alarm systems are often designed to protect employees and company property, but it’s difficult for a company to keep an eye on what’s going out the doors when it’s in the hands of an employee. Companies report that theft of portable electronics, such as laptops, is incredibly common in today’s business environment. Retail outlets, too, have been experiencing a high level of theft with employees existing as high a risk for theft as customers.

Installation of a strong security system, as well as a zero tolerance policy on theft is one of the only ways a company can fully protect itself from employee crime.

Dealing with Theft and Vandalism

In addition to theft by employees, companies of all types must also deal with vandalism and crime from outside sources. Even if nothing is stolen, a single act of vandalism may eat into profits when repairs are needed or when there are issues with graffiti or other types of destruction.
States around the country spend millions each year to remove graffiti from buildings. Businesses also spend millions each year when company property is vandalized. A strong surveillance system with CCTV installation is essential for businesses that operate in high crime areas. Some companies might even require foot patrols or security guards on site for full protection.

Extending Security to the Internet

A connected work force that accesses the internet and handles digital files is vulnerable to cyber attacks, and the prospect of cyber theft and hacking may be very costly. As of 2012, the latest year for which statistics are available, the FBI’s Internet Fraud Complaint Center counted an astounding 289,874 complaints that resulted in an incredible $525,441,110 worth of damage.

That’s a half billion dollars lost by companies, or an average of more than $4,500 per incident where loss occurred. In addition to the financial cost of cyber crime, a company’ s reputation may also suffer if a crime impacts the financial welfare of customers. By safeguarding digital information, a company will not only be protecting its own interests, but the interests of its customers.

The average company today is inundated with security concerns on many fronts and many levels. Companies must update and refine security efforts on a regular basis to ensure that the company can remain ahead of theft, violence and vandalism.


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