Home security is something everyone should consider if they are living in Cambodia. Just a little bit of forethought and preparation can go a long way towards protecting your home, your assets and, most important of all, you and your family’s well-being.
With the theme of home security in mind, Realestate.com.kh spoke with Mr. John Muller from Global Security Solutions Co., Ltd (GSS) Cambodia to shine some light on the best ways to protect your home or place of work.
BEFORE buying or renting any home or business premises, consider whether it is a security risk:
Muller recommends calling in security experts to make a risk assessment of your new home and surrounding area. “Is your home in a high crime area?” - ask this question before it is too late. “Is there is construction near your home?” Muller suggests that if this is the case, you need to be far more vigilant of your home security. Construction workers generally receive low wages and are experts at installing or removing doors, windows, etc. They also have plenty of time to survey your movements, and learn when the best time is to strike your home.
MONITOR who enters your home or business closely:
Muller suggests that conducting background checks on domestic staff and drivers is essential to maintaining home security. These are the people who you trust to come into your home, so you need to know that they are not a threat. Establish specific protocols for your domestic staff such as never allowing vendors to enter your home without getting authorization from you first. Muller gives the example of a maid allowing a TV cable company “representative” into your home without your prior permission.
That person then plants drugs, etc, in your home out of revenge for a business conflict; or, alternatively, steals something while inside the house. “By allowing unauthorised entry, you are putting your home security at risk.” If you choose to hire a security guard, do some homework on that security company, their training programs, policies and directors. There have been many cases of local security companies being established by former criminals, says Muller, and this includes expat management.
Use TECHNOLOGY to boost your home security:
Investing in electronic security systems is highly recommended by Muller because relying on guard manpower alone makes you prone to many problems. Ultimately guards are human, and humans can fail! Electronic systems such as motion sensors, burglary and fire detection alarms linked to high decibel alarms are a good investment. These can be linked into central monitoring stations (CMS) manned by operators 24/7, and supported with armed response teams and close connections with police in the event of a break-in.
Installing strong perimeter lighting is also important for business and home security. High resolution cameras are a great crime deterrent too. For perimeter protection, Muller recommends installing electrified fencing to prevent trespass. This has become very popular and cost effective in defeating crime. Keep vegetation close to your perimeter cut short, recommends Muller: “It’s especially important to remove trees that are next to your perimeter fence. Criminals often use trees as ladders to trespass.”
Be wary of KEYS:
Replace keyed locks to vital entrances of your home or business with fingerprint readers with numerical code passwords. Keys are extremely easily copied and professional thieves can easily defeat most keyed lock devices.
Don’t forget to consider FIRE SAFETY in your home security plan:
Most homes and apartments in Cambodia have barred windows. Make sure that on each floor there is a way to escape via a locked hatch in case of a fire. The keys for this door can be hidden inside the window in a box not visible to thieves. While you are at it, keep an updated list of your family, relatives, hospitals, fire department and the local police precinct contact numbers posted at several places in your home.