Dufferin Mutual Insurance Company

Miniaturization Contributes to Steal-Ability

Smaller sizes of electronic devices are making them much easier to steal. People are buying expensive equipment such as portable CD Players instead of the less expensive Walkmans, and Notebook Computers instead of desktop computers.

A CD player can easily be slipped into a pocket and a notebook can be slipped under a coat or even a light jacket. Thieves often work in pairs - one will distract you by bumping into you or asking you a question while the other is picking up your valuables.

Because of its size this kind of equipment is a lot more mobile - we take it with us everywhere and thus leave it in the car or set it down to eat lunch. Naturally that makes it more vulnerable to theft and Insurance Companies more concerned about claim costs.

While StatsCan reports that "break and enter" and theft crime is decreasing in Canada, they also report that the average claim cost is rising - as much as 68% per claim in some areas of this country. The higher value of this equipment is one reason for the increase.

StatsCan reports that thieves take mainly jewelry and audio and video equipment from homes, and money and office equipment from businesses. They also report that youths (aged 12-17) accounted for 4 of every 10 of the 46,200 people charged with breaking and entering in 1996.

So - what can we do to protect our valuables? A very large and noisy dog is a good deterrent if we can afford to feed him and protect everyone, except thieves, from dog bites. Keep doors and windows locked. Motion lights and alarm systems are effective. Neighbourhood Watch is a wonderful organization. Rural neighbours can watch out for each other and report any suspicious vehicles.

When you are going on vacation help to make your home safe by giving it the appearance that it is occupied. Inform a trustworthy neighbour, not everyone you know. Cancel all deliveries. Have someone cut the lawn. Stop delivery of your mail or have it picked up. Store small valuables in a safety deposit box. Ask someone to check the inside of your home everyday as some perils, such as water damage, are not covered otherwise.

When thieves enter your home one of the first places they look for valuables is in the bedroom. Find a safe hiding place for your cash and jewelry in another part of the house. Keep very little cash in the house as there is limited coverage for it in Insurance Policies - often only $300.00.

Never leave valuables in the car - it takes only seconds for thieves to break into your vehicle so try to minimize the reasons why they should.

And keep those portable CD Players, Notebook Computers and other valuable equipment well guarded.

712 Main Street East, Shelburne, Ontario. Canada. L9V 2Z4
Tel: 519 925 2026 • Toll Free: 800 265.9115
Fax: 519 925 3357
email: info@dufferinmutual.com
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