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Tech tips

Weekend project: 5 simple ways to make your home safer

Presented by SimpliSafe

Presented by SimpliSafe

For a limited time, save 20% on your SimpliSafe security system, and get your first month free when you sign up for Interactive Monitoring.

When you’re building a home security system, every little bit helps. You can make significant changes, like setting up outdoor cameras with facial recognition. This helps you spot familiar faces crossing your street every day.

Or you can make minor tweaks, like recycling old tech for security purposes. For example, you can turn a dusty old phone you no longer use into a surveillance tool. More on that later.

Thanks to our sponsor, SimpliSafe, we have a few tips to help you feel safer around the home. Keep reading for five easy ways to boost your home’s security setup.

1. Turn your old cell phones into security cameras

Security cameras are expensive. The outdated phone in your junk drawer is 100% free.  Instead of selling your old phone or trading it in for less than you spent to buy it, try this DIY trick instead.

Turning your old phone into a security camera doesn’t require any fancy hardware or tech know-how. You just need to download a security camera app on your phone. Look for something with motion detection and alert features.

Also, when looking for apps, check to see if it stores footage remotely or locally. Your choice of an app depends on how much storage space your old phone has. We recommend Critter.Camera, which also lets you turn old tablets and computers into security cameras.

Tap or click here for a step-by-step guide to turning your used tech into security cameras.

2. Don’t post pictures of your key or your home address on social media

Sure, you might feel proud of yourself for buying your dream home. That might make you want to snap a picture of your key with the caption, “Finally bought my home!” But before you upload your triumphant moment onto social media, hold your horses.

You’re giving burglars the key to your house. Or, at least, the key to creating the key to your home. That’s right: Thieves can make a copy of your house key based on a single picture.

Pictures like this are a big no-no. | Photo 54976356 © Andrey Popov | Dreamstime.com

For example, a now-defunct app called Keys Duplicated created house key copies based on photos. Users just snapped a pic of the key, uploaded it to the site and ordered a duplicate, which came within a week for a little as $6, according to GoKeyless.

Although Keys Duplicated seems to no longer be in business, you can still learn from its example. It’s incredibly easy to make a copy of a house key. Don’t give away your secrets on social media!

3. Set up motion lights in your backyard

If someone hops the fence, they’re hoping to sneak around in the dark. But bright lights can catch them right in the act. This could scare them so much they scramble over the fence and away from your home.

To keep your home as secure as possible, and save energy, check out these Ring Solar Floodlights.

Ring Solar Floodlights

They offer the security benefits of motion-detected security lights, but they’re different from most lights you can buy. They’re powered by the sun. Plus, you can use smart features like security alerts, scheduling, and the ability to remotely control your lights via an app. You can even pair them to Alexa for voice control!

4. Use a smart bolt

When you use a physical key, you have to worry about the best place to hide it. But burglars know all of your methods, from hiding a key under the mat to slipping it beneath a fake rock. Don’t leave yourself open to robberies; use a smart lock instead.

They let you lock and unlock your front door, even without a key. Some even let you unlock your door remotely so you can let people come over when you’re away. Tap or click here to find the right smart lock for you.

5. Customize your own home security system with SimpliSafe

SimpliSafe is an award-winning home security system, so you know it’s engineered with the latest technology you want to keep your family safe. But what sets SimpliSafe apart is its people: Highly trained security experts who are always there for you when you need them most.

SimpliSafe covers you 24/7 with experts trained to not only keep you safe but to make you feel safe. It’s one of the many reasons U.S. News recently called SimpliSafe “the best home security of 2021.”

For a limited time, save 20% on your SimpliSafe security system, and get your first month free when you sign up for Interactive Monitoring.

By clicking our links, you’re supporting our research. As an Amazon Associate, we earn a small commission from qualifying purchases. Recommendations are not part of any business incentives.

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