We’ve heard firsthand what motivates or discourages a burglar, discovering fascinating techniques straight from their mouth at burglary awareness workshops. It comes as no surprise that a groundbreaking new study by the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation concluded that burglar deterrents, such as outdoor surveillance cameras, burglar alarms and other security measures really are effective in discouraging crime.
Research collected by Dr. Joseph B. Kuhns used “feedback from 422 incarcerated male and female burglars selected at random from North Carolina, Kentucky, and Ohio to shed light on their decision-making processes, target-selection strategies, techniques, gender differences, and effectiveness of deterrence factors.” The study focused on gender motivational factors as well as the effectiveness of deterrents.
The study found that “approximately 83 percent of the offenders said they would attempt to determine if an alarm was present before attempting a burglary and 60 percent said they would seek an alternative target.” We think those are great odds!
Here are more highlights from the research:
- Nearly 60 percent of the burglars said they would consider the presence of cameras or other surveillance equipment when selecting a target, and more than 40 percent said that would be a factor in prompting them to choose another target.
- About half of the respondents reported engaging in residential burglary, while 31 percent said they preferred commercial targets.
- Nearly 90 percent of the respondents indicated their top reason for committing burglaries was related to the need to acquire drugs (51 percent) or money (37 percent), which was often used to support drug habits.
- Slightly less than a third of the offenders reported that they collected information about a potential target prior to initiating a burglary attempt, suggesting that most burglars are impulsive to some degree. About 12 percent indicated that they typically planned the burglary, 41 percent suggested it was most often a “spur of the moment” event/offense, and the other 37 percent reported that it varied.
- Male burglars often plan their burglaries more deliberately and carefully, and were more likely to gather intelligence about a potential target ahead of time. Female burglars appear to be more impulsive overall, engaging in “spur-of-the-moment” burglaries.
For more information about how to protect your home or business with our burglar deterrents, check out our security services.