Part 1: Security Advice in the COVID-19 Environment – At Home

The following content is taken from our Weekly Kenya Security Information Service (SIS) Report. Much of the advice provided, is also relevant to those who do not live in Kenya. The Castor Vali Kenya Weekly SIS reports provide a look back over events of the past week, a view of the coming week and our tailored advice based on these events.

For more information about the Kenya SIS Reports and to sign up to a two week, no obligation, free trial, click here.

Overview

Crime has increased, as incomes have reduced. It is prudent to continually examine your security arrangements and your behaviour to ensure that you are as prepared and protected as possible. The following advice is specifically about security. See our COVID-19 Information Service for advice on staying healthy in this COVID-19 environment.

At Home

Your home is your safe haven. Take some time to make sure it is as safe as possible.

  • Look after your domestic staff.  Even if you have taken the decision to send them home in order to isolate your family from infection, try to continue to pay them. Remember they have information about your property that would be very useful to intruders.  Hungry people are desperate people. Stay in touch with staff that you have temporarily sent home. Aside from it being the humane thing to do, they may have useful information to help you better understand what is going on in the area. 
  • Conduct your own security survey at your home. Think like an intruder – view your property from the outside and consider how you would break in, or how an intruder could attack the you as you arrive or leave in order to gain access to your home. Make a list of what could be improved and prioritise what is most important, bearing in mind what you can afford. Don’t forget security lighting, ideally linked to passive infra-red (PIR) sensors. Good lighting at vulnerable points, including gates, perimeters and doors can act as an excellent deterrent. Remember that worthwhile enhancements can be made to your security without spending any money – changing procedures and being more security aware will help a lot. Good security risk management companies, including Castor Vali, can help with this and will notice things that you may not.
  • If you have a safe, ensure that it is fixed to a supporting wall and is well hidden.  If you have two, keep the important items in the better hidden one and be prepared to give up the more obvious one should you be unlucky enough to be the victim of a home-invasion. Use your safe.  Don’t leave valuables out unless they are really needed.
  • Strengthen your links to the local community.  For many reasons, not just security, you will likely need good neighbours.  Take the time to check on their welfare; this will be repaid.
  • Maintain a rolling stock of what is essential.  Medication, baby items, long life food, cash, water, torches, batteries and fuel for vehicles and generators are some items to consider.  Don’t go overboard. Try and remember to keep your phone charged, have a power bank handy (and charged) and keep emergency numbers saved as favourites.
  • If you don’t have a well-stocked first aid kit, do a little research and create one that is appropriate for your family. Medical facilities may not be available to you in a time of need. Ensure you know how to use everything in the kit, working it out when you have a medical emergency is not ideal!
  • Keep at least half a tank of fuel in your car and know where your nearest “safe-haven” is.  This could be a friend with a well secured house, or the local police station.
  • If you feel confident, make links with your local police commander. Pay them a visit and offer them some kindness. It doesn’t have to be a senior officer, but having such links locally could prove valuable.

Future editions of this blog will cover: Out of the Home and Online. To ensure you don’t miss out on this valuable advice sign up to our SIS free trial here.

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