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The holidays are magical. There’s more time to spend with loved ones, traffic is a tad less soul-destroying and there’s a general sense of good cheer that pervades everything. Even if you’ve heard Boney M’s rendition of The Little Drummer Boy a thousand times, it’s not cloying because it means that the holidays are in full swing.

Unfortunately, it’s also the time when criminals are most active, taking full advantage of the fact that many homes are left unattended for extended periods of time. It’s open season, but instead of hunting wabbits like loveable old Elmer Fudd, these crooks are hunting vulnerable houses.

Fortunately, your friends at Centurion Systems are here to provide you with some great holiday security tips to help keep you and the contents of your home safe from those wanting to do some last minute “shopping”:
·         Dispose of the packaging your gifts came in where it is out of sight. You don’t want to advertise the fact that you now have a brand new 50” flat screen TV

Be wary of posting your vacation plans on social media
Test your alarm system thoroughly and notify your armed response company before leaving for holiday
Have a neighbour collect your mail. A full mailbox is a tell-tale sign that the residents haven’t been home for a while
Have a friend or neighbour maintain your pool while you’re away, or use a GSM module
Ensure that doors and windows are properly secured before you hit the road
Ask someone to come switch on or two lights on at night. A GSM module can also be used for this
Suspend newspaper and magazine deliveries
If possible, leave one car in the driveway and ask one of your neighbours to come and move it a small distance every once in a while to give the appearance that it is being driven
Criminals know all about Christmas bonuses. Do not carry around large sums of cash, but make use of Internet banking where possible
If you have a garden, arrange for the grass to be cut and the plants to be watered while you are away
If you are travelling to a country with a known crime problem, avoid carrying handbags and cellphones that can be easily snatched and do not walk around on your own, especially after dark
Do research on the Internet for travel warnings before booking your trip. You want to avoid travelling to areas with ongoing armed conflicts and political unrest. Wiki Travel is a fantastic website to do research on

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