Protecting your home from burglars starts with knowing what attracts thieves and the best steps to take to avoid a break in. Jim Boyce, head of the security company DEFENDERS, shares what you need to know to keep your home safe. 

From your experience, where/how have burglars typically entered a home during a break in? 

While doors are the most common, we find that intruders find multiple entry points into the home. That’s why we focus on thoroughly protecting our customers with a comprehensive home security solution tailored to their unique situation. 

What are some of the most commonly stolen items?

Cash, electronics, jewelry, prescription drugs and tools tend to be the most commonly stolen items; however, nothing is off-limits when a thief is in your home.

Appearance-wise, what makes a home more attractive to burglars?

No sign in the front yard! Also, be aware of what you’re leaving by the curb on trash day. When you buy a new TV or item that may be attractive to a burglar and leave the box by the curb, you are basically letting the burglar know what you have inside.

What is the very best way to stop break-ins? 

The best way to stop a break-in is by installing a home security system. Also, always lock your doors and windows and make sure your outside lights are working. Remember, there is no foolproof way to stop someone from breaking in, but a security sign posted outside the home is a great deterrent. 

What is the number one benefit consumers would see from implementing Smart Home Technology in the home?

Matt McGovren: The number one benefit of a smart home is that it enables consumers to be immersed in their home wherever they are. With a smart home you don’t have to worry if you locked the front door, turned off the thermostat or shut the garage. Connected products let consumers breathe easy by knowing they can check in on their home at a glance and quickly make adjustments from a mobile app if needed.

Where do you see Internet of Things (IoT) going in the future as it relates to the home? To our communities?

While there’s currently a lot of hype around voice control, I believe the smart home of the future will be one in which multiple interfaces and touch points work together in tandem. That could range from mobile apps for when you’re on the go and voice commands for when you’re in a given room, to passive displays of relevant information being discreetly delivered on the wall as you walk down a hallway.

For those looking to implement IoT Tech in their homes, what is the best place to start?

Lighting products (bulbs, switches, dimmers, etc.) are a natural gateway into the smart home because of their utility, affordability and easy setup. We find many Wink users start with a smart light bulb or two and gradually add connected products from other categories like sensors, locks and cameras to their home over time.

What is the most interesting way you’ve seen IoT being implemented in the home?

We came across a Wink user who turned his Airstream trailer into a smart home on wheels. He bought the Airstream because he wanted to sleep in a modern, urban environment while being surrounded by nature. But maintaining one is tough work, especially since it’s kept remotely in storage when not I use. So he tapped his interest in home automation and turned the trailer into a smart home. Using Wink and a bunch of compatible products, he found he could remotely keep tabs on his Airstream's propane levels, lights, security and even possible water leaks, all through his smartphone.