A Security talk with your partner.

I wanted to talk about something that’s been on my mind lately.

Security Risk Consultant  – You know how we’ve got all these security measures in place at home? Well, it’s great and all, but I’ve realized it might not be enough to keep our children truly safe. So, I did some digging on the internet and found out about something called a security risk assessment. These experts visit your home, inspect everything, and then tell you what needs to be improved to make your home safer.

I scheduled a meeting with this assessor.

We had a pleasant conversation where we talked about security from a different perspective. After the inspection, I received the security risk assessment report.  In the report, they explained that they see security from an external viewpoint. Their perspective on security is totally different from ours.  If I had known their viewpoint earlier, I might have chosen a different security solution instead of the alarm system we already have. It’s actually disappointing that we didn’t find out about this sooner. But it’s no use getting upset about it now.istockphoto-1493987975-1024x1024 by Dima Berlin. security risk consultant

What I learned in the security risk assessment report

Was how the assessor measured security. In the risk report, he explained everything to me. I found out that our cameras aren’t in the right position. When he looked at the footage and the cameras, they were too close to the gate and the house. He explained that we need to be able to see people from further away.

So, we need to move the cameras and change their angle. He also told me about something called video analytics. It’s a program that can be added to the cameras, and I need to ask the installers to set it up. It’s like an invisible line that works with the camera and the lens. When someone crosses that line, it triggers an alarm.

It’s crucial for us

To set up an alarm system early on. He also explained that we can schedule timeframes on the program, so if someone stays outside the fence or gate for too long, we’ll be alerted. This allows the camera to warn us before something happens, which is really useful.

Additionally, our entire camera system should be linked to our cell phones, so we can check what’s happening when we’re not home. He also mentioned that the video recordings can be used as evidence if needed. We definitely need to call a technician to adjust the camera angles, ensuring we can spot people much earlier before they enter the property.

In the report,

He also suggested that if we have the budget for it, we could add two or three extra cameras and discreetly hide them so that the main focus remains on the house. I also learned from him that there are two types of camera installation points. It’s strange that nobody mentioned this before, but one set of cameras is used when you’re inside the house to monitor activity outside, like who’s approaching the house.

The other set is used when you’re away from home to monitor what’s happening outside your doors, gates, and windows. The report also explains how to enhance the safety of all the doors. He suggested that we pick a room in the house to serve as a safe space in case of an emergency, with a stronger door. He explained how this door would be made and advised us to get help to install it correctly.

Then he talked about our children.

Although we already have a panic system set up, we hadn’t thought about explaining it to our kids. Based on the advice from the security risk assessor, we should approach teaching children and teenagers about safety differently. For children, we should turn it into a game. We can emphasize the importance of pressing the panic button by praising them whenever they do it, even while they’re hiding.

They need to press and hold the button and count to 10; repeat it four times; it is necessary to ensure the signal goes through. It’s crucial that the children go to the safe room as quickly as possible, regardless of any noises they might hear. They ought to use headphones with loud music playing so they can concentrate on what they need to do and not become distracted by outside noises.

Safe room

This is the safe room we’re going to set up. It’s important that the kids are properly prepared, and they need to go there immediately in case of an emergency. My love, you should need to get to this safe room fast and not wait for me. Once inside the safe room, you can call for help and talk to others.

We must ensure that the children understand that if the alarm beeps, they should go straight to the safe room. He also advised us to keep an extra phone, water, and blankets there. This is crucial because, in emergencies, there’s no time to think about gathering these essentials.

He also stressed the importance of informing all our friends and children that if there’s any danger, anyone in the house must go to the safe room immediately and repeatedly press the panic button. While inside, they should keep the doors locked at all times and avoid opening them under any circumstances.

Security: silent communication

Another thing we need to discuss with the children is a special light that needs some adjustments. If that light is on and someone outside sees it, they should understand that something is wrong and not enter the house. Instead, the light is like a silent alarm. We also need to warn our neighbors about this; they should be aware and realize that if that light is on, they should contact security or the police.

The report explained how we can turn on that light remotely, even if we’re not at home. The assessor also mentioned something about using silent signals that everyone in the house should understand. For example, if someone sits in a certain way, it could mean there’s trouble. We can even involve our friends to help keep each other safe by giving them access to our outside cameras.  When they see the signal, they’ll know something is wrong without us having to talk to them directly.

SMS alert

Additionally, he emphasized the importance of adding a communicator to the alarm system. This will notify us via SMS if something happens while we’re away, ensuring we’re informed even if we’re not at home. With this system in place, both parents and children will know not to return home if they receive the SMS alert.

This ensures we won’t accidentally walk into danger while we work with the security company to make our home safe. He explained some of the services security companies can provide, especially at night, and advised us on trimming the garden and rearranging things so everyone can see what’s happening.

Important emergency numbers

What he advised is that we should keep our old cell phones with chargers in the car, along with all the important emergency numbers programmed into them. This way, if our regular phones are taken, we’ll have backups in the car. We need to have a serious discussion about what to do if one of us is ever trapped and what steps to take afterward.

He suggested gathering all important phone numbers and ensuring that the children know them and can access them easily. We can post them somewhere in the safe room for quick reference. He also recommended having a few safety items in the house, such as a small medical kit. It’s essential to have both fixed and remote panic buttons installed, and the children should be aware of their locations.

Save the children.

The assessment report talks about Save the Children; we need to read it again and again because there is a lot of information that we need to understand. The report warned us that this question will not be answered in the first day or two, and sometimes it takes months. How will we ensure the safety of the children while leaving one parent behind?

It’s a tough conversation to have,

But he stressed that it’s necessary for our safety and preparedness to start talking about this. The assessor also explained to me how the security system works and how to set up the gate for assistance. He provided advice on adding extra security measures at the gate and how to monitor it during the night. All of this is new information for us.

There are some weak spots on our property where the fences are okay, but we need someone to inspect and divide the areas into zones so we can pinpoint any problems.

The assessor

Discussed the necessary security measures for the roof and different doors. He explained how to enhance security in our garden and around the house gates. Interestingly, he mentioned that we don’t need to fix the fence immediately; it’s okay to leave it as it is, but we still need to add security measures to it.

There’s a lot more

That he covered about travel, safety, and teaching the kids through games to be aware if anyone is following us. He gave tips on parking safely at shopping centers and elsewhere, how to take care of the car, and driving home securely. I’ve gained valuable insights from him and now see things from a different perspective. A bad maintain vehicle is like a death trap.

The assessor makes a statement that in South Africa, if your vehicle breaks down next to the road, the opportunity is big that people will rape you, commit a robbery, and even kill you before they help. We really need to bring in technicians because our security system doesn’t protect us from all the dangers we face. The assessor explained that the security beams outside should be at different levels and in different zones.

He also explained how we set up the floodlights at night so that if you come home in the dark, you can see if someone is lurking in the shadows.

It’s not good that we’re only finding out about these problems now and not earlier.

We’ve already spent a lot of money on our security system, only to realize that it doesn’t work well when something goes wrong. Now we have to spend more money just to make some small changes, but it’s necessary for our safety. The most important thing is that we all speak the same language about security, so we’re all on the same page and know what to do in an emergency.

If I say “left,” you know to go left, and if I say “go,” you just go without arguing.

The security report explains what a driveway assessment means.

He also taught me how to talk to our young children about this without scaring them. I’m glad and thankful for this. Now we can share this with all our friends, encouraging them to get their own security risk assessments done. The more people understand and educate themselves about security, the safer everyone’s lives will be. Read more on independent security risk assessors and what they can do for you…

Written by Andre Mundell.

Our security risk assessment projects cover strategic locations such as Gauteng (Pretoria, Johannesburg, Midrand, Sandton, Centurion), Bloemfontein, Durban, and Cape Town.

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Written by Andre Mundell

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