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How to keep your home safe while away for the holidays


Break-ins and burglaries may be top of mind while preparing to leave your house or apartment for the holidays.

According to Columbia Police dispatch records, there have been five burglaries in the past week. Last year, there were 17 burglaries during the week of Thanksgiving in Columbia.

Thursday night, an attempted break-in led to a police search in south Columbia. With the added stress of Columbia law enforcement still looking for a suspected prowler -- who is targeting women ages 20-30 at south Columbia apartment complexes -- home-safety concerns are prominent right now in Mid-Missouri.

Make it look like someone is still home

Geico Insurance shared a few things you can do to keep your home secure while also not drawing attention to it.

If you have outdoor lights, set a timer for them to turn on or set electronics -- like a radio or television-- to turn on.

Lock every door, window and pet doors. Pay close attention to any doors you may not normally lock.

Be careful what you post on social media; don't publicly post when you're away. Experts suggest using friends-only options and disabling any location services on social media. Also, avoid posting anything that gives away the location of your home or apartment.

Get a home alarm, or fool burglars into thinking you have an alarm by setting out fake alarm signs in your yard or window.

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Hannah Falcon

Hannah joined the ABC 17 News Team from Houston, Texas, in June 2021. She graduated from Texas A&M University. She was editor of her school newspaper and interned with KPRC in Houston. Hannah also spent a semester in Washington, D.C., and loves political reporting.


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