How to stay safe from burglary this Bonfire night

“Remember remember the 5th of November… Gunpowder, treason and plot”. November 5th is a time of fireworks, sparklers and seeing your breath hang in the cold air. This weekend, families and friends across the UK will gather in local parks to watch bonfires, throwing yellow and orange flames high into the cold night sky. We spend an evening making memories with loved ones and watching fantastic firework displays to remember the Gunpowder Plot, 411 years ago.  

Why burglary spikes around fireworks night

While out enjoying our local firework displays, most of us leave our homes empty. The bangs and flashes of fireworks provide the perfect cover for criminals which means that burglaries spike around November 5th. With over 650,000 UK homes broken into in 2016, the stats show Bonfire Night is the worst day of the year for burglary, with 21% more than the average day according to data from Aviva, the UK’s leading home insurer.

Aviva found that 42% of homeowners leave windows unlocked when they’re out – making it all too easy for burglars, especially on a night of the year when they’re provided with extra cover. Make sure you lock your windows and doors as you head out, and follow these home security tips from the Cocoon team.

5 Tips To Stay Safe This Bonfire Night

  1. Have stickers showing that you have a burglar alarm visible in your window, so people know that your home is protected. (Over 81% of burglars avoid homes with burglar alarms.)
  2. Remember to remove flyers from your doormat, leaving a stack there makes it look like your house is unoccupied.
  3. If you’ve been working in the garden, don’t leave a ladder or wheelbarrow out. It can make it easy for criminals to access windows and balconies when attempting a burglary.
  4. Don’t advertise to thieves that you’re going to be out, be discreet when loading your car, and wait until you’re back home to share your photos online.
  5. Get yourself a Cocoon home security system, so you know your home is secure from burglary while you’re away.

Cocoon can help you keep safe this November

Peace of mind and good home security go hand in hand. Sadly the time and cost of setting up a burglar alarm system can be enough to make you feel like it’s Halloween again! Thankfully, new smarter home security systems like Cocoon not only take the hassle away from protecting your home, they also make it much more affordable.

From £159 you can protect your home with a simple to setup and use all-in-one Cocoon device that uses unique Subsound® multi-room protection technology to cover more of your home, alerting the moment something unusual happens.

  • Simple Setup
  • HD Camera and live video streaming
  • Smart mobile phone notifications
  • Built-in siren you can trigger from anywhere
  • Auto-arm and disarm when you come and go
  • Records and stores videos free for 7 days

Cocoon is more than a smart home security system or burglar alarm, it’s a way to check in on your pets and loved ones and to connect to your home even when you can’t be there. With simple setup, clear HD video night and day, and an easy to use app on iOS and Android. Cocoon has all you need to feel safe this Bonfire Night, and throughout the year.

Need more help with your home security?

If you’re still not sure about how best to secure your home this winter you can find more information in our helpful Cocoon home security guide.  

Three simple tips that will help protect your home

Home is where you should feel safe and comfortable, it’s your personal space and where you keep your most sentimental possessions, and there’s good news in that homes are getting safer. According to the Crime Survey for England and Wales, domestic burglary is going down. One reason for this is the growing availability of home security systems which really work to deter thieves.

Does deterrence really work?

A report by Dr. Joseph B. Kuhns of the University of North Carolina includes opinions from more than 400 imprisoned burglars, and their consensus is startling. More than 83 percent of the offenders would try to determine if an alarm was present before a burglary to see if they should find an alternative target. 81% of both professional and opportunistic burglars said that on identifying an alarm or surveillance system they were likely to retreat.

This data isn’t unique, study after study has found that the vast majority of burglars avoid homes with an alarm system. They are the single most effective deterrent against burglary. In fact, homes that don’t have a security system in place are 300% more likely to be targeted by burglars. 

Feel safe, not fearful

It’s a sad fact of life that burglary happens, but we like to think practically seeing it as a problem to solve rather than something to be scared of. These statistics make it clear that looking after your home by deterring thieves can be simple, especially with the availability of security solutions like Cocoon. The award winning design means it’s stylish enough to have clearly visible, and the alarm is 90+db (that’s really loud, it’s tested in our office regularly!). Both its visibility and the deafening siren act as deterrents to protect your home from burglary. With 88% of burglaries unplanned and opportunistic this sort of interruption will make the culprit flee, fast.

3 tips to deter thieves

1) Don’t give easy access

Keep ladders locked out of sight, and make sure garden furniture and big plant pots aren’t near your windows. There’s no need to give them a leg-up!

Security tips from Cocoon, to deter thieves and keep your home safe. Don't give burglars easy access.
(Photo credit – Nathan Bittinger)

2) Get a small dog

Though might think a large dog would be a great deterrent, acting as your loyal guard dog to scare theives, small dogs are actually better. Convicted burglars said that small “yapping” dogs were far riskier, and more likely to deter them, because “they never shut up”. 
(Yes, we are giving you an excuse to get a puppy!)

Security tips from Cocoon, to deter thieves and keep your home safe. Small dogs make better guard dogs.
(Photo credit: University of Liverpool, Faculty of Health & Life Sciences)


3) Be a good neighbour

Being friends with locals is about more than borrowing milk and sugar. If your neighbours know who should and shouldn’t be at your home then they can call out anything suspicious. Community spirit can really make a neighbourhood safer, so ask them to look out for you, and in turn, look out for them.

Security tips from Cocoon, to deter thieves and keep your home safe. Make friends with your neighbours.
(Image credit: @wewon31)

Alarms are the most effective deterrent

These are useful tricks but, as London’s Metropolitan Police say, alarms are “undoubtedly the most effective deterrent against burglary”. Cocoon works as a deterrent. It is a complete home security system and burglar alarm in a single device, with the reassurance of being able to check in on your home at any time. Using patented Subsound® technology it is  powerful enough to protect your whole home whether that’s a city apartment, a five story townhouse or a sprawling suburban bungalow, but also flexible enough to suit both short term rents and long term homeowners. Plus, it’s incredibly simple to set up, so you have peace of mind in minutes.

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Why home security doesn’t work if you rent

There can be no denying the continuing rise of “generation rent”, as PwC reported, renting privately is now the norm for younger generations. This will see even previously large home buyer cities becoming cities of renters, such as London, where only 40% of people will own their own home by 2025.

Such big societal changes require innovation in technology, and that’s where Cocoon comes in. It’s no good designing technology for personal homes anymore, there can be no guarantee as to how long someone will be staying in one place. Cocoon, with its one-of-a-kind design, simple and fast setup, flexibility around household members, and smartphone control offers home security that works for generation rent.

You should be able to have security measures in place to protect your rental accommodation
You should be able to have security measures in place to protect your home, even if it’s short term rental accommodation

Why have we become the rental generation?

The increasing number of people renting rather than owning property is the result of multiple factors falling into place at the same time.

House prices in the UK are set to rise, despite the recent Brexit vote, and first-time buyers are struggling to secure a home to call their own across Europe. This, alongside market shifts led by innovators like fast-growing startup Airbnb, has led to a situation where renting isn’t just a smart move, it’s often the only option.

Airbnb who, despite being the world’s largest provider of accommodation, actually own no property. With 100 million users, 640,000 hosts and 2.3 million property listings, it’s clear that the rental space is a large one.

While renting short-term is easy and allows for flexibility and freedom, not owning your own home can lead to problems, especially with security. A tenant has much less power to change and adjust their rental accommodation to suit their own needs, bound by a lengthy landlord contract. This may mean you can’t add the locks you want, the sensors for a traditional burglar alarm or the home security camera that you feel you need.

How can Cocoon help?

We’ve designed Cocoon to have everything you need to secure your home in a single, smart device the size of an apple. It uses sound and artificial intelligence to cover and protect your whole home. It’s built around freedom, flexibility, and the power to keep you safe no matter where you move to. There are plenty of safety tips available online for renters, but we wanted to go one step further and provide a powerful system that will make you feel truly safe, at home and away.

With a raft of features, Cocoon is perfect for those priced out of buying their own home and costly security systems. It offers quick and easy installation and will tune to the home you’re in, learning what’s normal to avoid annoying false alarms. If you move house it can easily be reset, and within a week it will tune to the new space so you can feel safe in the knowledge that Cocoon is looking after your home.

No matter the size of your rental accommodation, Cocoon will work for you. Using our unique patented Subsound® technology it picks up sound waves the human ear can’t, from any room, on any floor, in your home. With the camera you can check in on your home at any time, but sensitive sound detection means that you’ll know if there’s something unusual, even if it’s out of view.

Cocoon smart home security device in home setting.
Cocoon has been beautifully designed, without ugly wires or sensors, to offer security and aesthetics at the same time

Cocoon is also pet-friendly and will adapt to pets in your home, so it won’t disturb you if your furry friend plays while you’re out (unless they do something really bad!). Finally, rental flats often have tenants who come and go, Cocoon is smart enough to adapt and work with multiple users, giving everyone in the household access.

Cocoon works very similarly to how you do, it has a worry level to determine whether to alert you or not. It does all this without compromising your all-important privacy. Home security and privacy are two of our most important priorities at Cocoon, they’ve been a core focus in everything we’ve designed, and we know that it’s increasingly important for renters to know their data and privacy are safe.

Each Cocoon device is beautifully engineered, containing a HD Camera, Night Vision, Motion Detection as well as a Very Loud Siren. Cocoon learns and adapts to your home, automatically arming when you leave and disarming when you come home. So you can go on enjoying the freedom of renting, without worrying about security.

Interested in hearing more about Cocoon?

We understand the importance of home security and personal privacy, we all want to rest easy and Cocoon lets you do that. If you’d like to hear more, or chat through how it works, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

Image credit: David Amsler

The Biggest Home Security Myths

If you don’t already have a home security system, you can probably list a few reasons why. But how many of these are actually valid when you think about them? Myths about security systems are rampant, but most of them are based on misconceptions.

Here are five of the biggest home security myths debunked:

1. Home Security Is Too Pricey.

Once reserved for the wealthy elite, today’s systems are now accessible for all people, with the average monthly cost of a service subscription being only $30 in 2013. There may be some additional start-up costs, but even these usually only mean a one-time cost of a few hundred dollars — less than the price of the average TV. While a home security system does mean another bill to fit into your budget, the costs are minimal compared to replacing your valuables.

2. A Dog Is Just as Good.

You may think opting for a large dog can replace a home security system. While it’s true that burglars are less likely to target your house if they know a dog is inside, the average household pet is not trained as a guard dog. He may bark at an intruder, but he may just as easily be appeased with a treat. Dogs sometimes also end up as casualties in the event of a home invasion or burglary. Adding a home security system keeps both you and your pet safer.

3. It’s Just Stuff.

It can be tempting to think that everything you own is easily replaceable, and this is true as far as the actual physical possessions, but the sentimental value will be lost forever. A burglary also impacts your sense of security, something that can take months and even years to recover. A home security system can help deter burglars and help you feel safer, especially for those who live alone.

4. Determined Burglars Won’t Care About Alarms.

When a burglar breaks into a home, he is taking a calculated risk. He’s betting that he can get in, get the stuff and get out before he is noticed or caught. The presence of a home security system dramatically affects these odds, and one study found that 50 percent of burglars say they’d pass on a house that had an alarm system.

Simple tips to keep your home safe from burglars

Home security doesn’t have to mean spending thousands on turning your house or apartment into an impenetrable fortress. With the latest tech it’s now much more about controlling who should and shouldn’t be in your home than it is about bars and barricades, but there are some simple things that everyone can do to lessen the likelihood that you’ll ever experience the gut wrenching feeling of a break in.

Criminals, like rivers, follow the easiest path so keep them away from your home by removing the easy option. Locked doors and windows are a must and may mean you are lower on the list but what will really help is making small changes that work together as a deterrent.

Burglars aren’t superhuman, 99.9% aren’t evil geniuses but some are career criminals and they know what to look for when planning their next job. The first rule you need to remember is ‘Don’t make it easy’.

Don’t make it easy.

  • Have strong locks and use the chain or deadbolt when you are in the home
  • Join your neighbourhood watch
  • Get a security device that can deter and repel intruders – I hear Cocoon is great!

You don’t have to dig a moat…

  • Lock external doors and windows
  • Have good external lighting
  • Cut back overgrown vegetation to remove hiding places
  • Collect your mail

Out of sight, out of mind.

  • Keep valuables in a strong box, safe or simply out of plain view where possible
  • If avoidable don’t display valuable items for passing opportunists to see

Invest in detection and take back control

  • Again, Neighbourhood watch = early warning and eye witnesses
  • HD video recording means you’ll stand a better chance of prosecuting or recovering your property
  • Smart home security like Cocoon alerts you when unusual events take place so you can contact the Police and act immediately to keep you and your loved ones safe.