As part of efforts to secure lives of everyone living in the state, the Lagos State Government in conjunction with the Lagos State Police Command and the Department of State Security Services has released security tips which it believe can go a long way to assist you to secure your life and those of your loved ones.
All doors and gates should have quality locks. It is essential to check all doors in your home at bedtime and while leaving the house; Do not hide your keys outside the home; Keep all doors locked even when at home with members of your family; Have window locks; Create a peephole in your door, where you can check out the person at your door before letting him in; opt for clear glass windows to observe a person from a distance; if you do not have a gate or fence, lock all the doors at all time; ensure that your external power sources are properly installed and locked with keys; do not block bedroom windows with permanent grilles as the windows may be used as emergency exits, equally review fire safety exit if you have window bars and grilles;
If you have burglar or intrusion alarms installed, check and switch them on at all times; ensure you have fire extinguishers in your home, especially the kitchen and show the entire household how to use them; always make sure you have flash lights(torchlight) at points that can be reached easily; keeping of pets like dogs can be a deterrent to criminals but never install separate doggy doors or entrances as they also can admit small intruders.
Know your neighbours, develop rapport with them and offer to keep an eye on eachother’s home, especially when you are on a trip or out of town; if you observe any unusual activity or movement around, report to the nearest security posts (police).
Ensure that your family understands and appreciates your security patters and let them know that the measures em-placed are for their safety.
Rehearse safety drills with your family and let them be aware of procedures to escape danger and get help where necessary.
Know where all family members are at all times; vary your daily routine and avoid predictable patterns; educate family members on the proper way to answer the telephone at home, let them know what to do when you are not at home and how to receive visitors while keeping eyes on them.
Install CCTV cameras if you can afford the cost of surveillance; be careful when a neighbour knocks on your door at odd hours as criminals can use them to gain access to your home; join resident association; if possible employ a guard to mount your gate; do not encourage members of your household to keep late nights.
SECURITY ON WHEELS
Ensure adequate physical security, good fencing, good illumination, mounting centric wire; identify visitors properly before opening the gate or door; look behind you when driving home; look around your environment as you approach your home; if you are driving be observant and conscious of being followed. A warning signal is when the same cars is noticeable behind you through various traffic routes; always lock all your car doors during any journey, no matter how short; do not leave bags or money lying around in your car, no matter how short; when in a chattered taxi, always sit at the back, lock up the doors and never allow the driver to make any stops for any person; and be civil with members of the public.
WHEN YOU ARE LEAVING HOME
Secure your home before leaving, close and lock all windows and doors, garages and gates; switch on outside lights and replace burnt-out light bulbs; ask a friend, colleague or neighbour to help check your home periodically while you are away; unplug all appliances; lock all jewellery, important documents, currency and other valuables in a safe place.
Gain adequate security consciousness or education as well as habitual practices of tips learnt; always observe security drills and procedures; avoid membership of secret cults and criminal syndicate;
Avoid ostentatious lifestyle and rigid routines that you could easily get identified with, like going to particular places at given times and days or following the same routine every time; be conscious and wary of such human weakness as drunkenness, flippancy, sexual promiscuity, drug addiction and gambling among others; avoid lonely routes and do not disclose schedules to strangers and others you may have any reason to doubt; when confronted with a weapon, remain calm, and if taken hostage cooperate with your captors but try to cautiously appraise (place) of captivity; always watch out for and monitor strange faces in your neighbourhood; do not wear provocative dresses in religiously conservative areas; do not carry black nylon bags or big brown envelopes; it may attract criminals.
Always sensitise members of your family on security tips gained through security awareness; further sensitise family members on emerging threats against human health as well as new crime trends; keep dangerous objects away from children and endeavour to vet and re-vet domestic staff through the service of the SSS.
Teach children never to admit strangers in the home; teach children local emergency phone numbers(Lagos 112 and 767); make sure your children know their names, address and phone numbers; get to know all your teenager’s friends; caution teenagers about blind dates or meeting anyone they do not know; teach young members of your family not to open mails or packages; teach younger children how to answer the telephone so that they do not give out personal information, such as home address, absence of adults, etc;
Teach children to always say not to strangers; teach children how to exit the house in case of emergency;
Install CCTV cameras in your business premises to monitor movements of people and assist the police in identifying criminals; be respectful of colleagues and other associates; do not divulge office information to staff and non-staff without authorization; learn and adhere to the rules and regulations governing your employment; avoid amorous affairs in your office environment; be cautious of friends who always wish to discuss official matters when they visit you or take you out on social outings; avoid discussing official or personal/ financial information on the phone; be cautious of colleagues who may exploit your relationship to gain unauthorized access to information within your domain and always ensure that sensitive office equipment and documents under your charge are properly secured at all times.
Avoid night travels, and always keep enough money for emergency situations like boarding of fresh conveyance; do not wear excess jewellery and always dress casually; be wary of discussing your traveling/business plans; if on flights adhere to all security/safety instructions and while on road transport, be cautious in sharing food with strangers; keep away from any luggage not attended to in hotels, airports or other public places;
Keep emergency numbers with you at all times; you can create speed dial number in your mobile phone just in case you find yourself in a very compromising situation; do not give away any personal information such as your phone numbers and home address, especially on social networking websites or to persons unknown to you; watch what and where you speak especially on phone. Lot of people have no sense of security while speaking and could end up bragging yourself into being kidnapped and asked to pay a ransom; be alert to suspicious and unusual behaviour happening around you; be discrete in your philanthropic gestures as this could make you a target; and do not discuss financial matters in open places and not even in the car or within the hearing of your domestic staff;
Avoid huge cash transactions, use ATM or online transfer where necessary; do not leave your children in a car unattended , particularly while shopping, refueling or on social outings; avoid going out alone; schools should install CCTV in the school surroundings to monitor activities in and around the premises especially at opening and closing times;
Be alert and report any suspicious or unfamiliar persons(s) in your neighbourhood; report any suspicious package/vehicle to the nearest police station/security checks;
Do not use your phone or send text message while driving. Use of phone while driving increases the chances of accidents by 300 percent and is against the law; schedule 1. Item 39 of the Lagos Road Traffic Law; even when using the phone with hands-free application as approved by the traffic law do not engage in long conversation as this absorbs all your attention, increasing the chance of accidents, robbery, kidnapping; ensure that all your vehicle lights and indicators are functioning. Car owners, office fleets, delivery trucks/vans, tankers(NUPENG), buses, NURTW, BRT, LAGBUS, in accordance with schedule 3, items 30-33 of the Lagos State Road Traffic Law. Non-working lights are dangerous especially at night.
Vehicles with learners sign should not be driven without the instructor; do not drive against traffic; be considerate of and courteous to other road users;
SECURITY IN HOTELS
Do not discuss your business or travel plans in public areas where you may be overheard. Discuss your travel plans and movements during your stay with as few people as possible; do not entertain strangers in your hotel rooms; be alert to overly friendly locals who may have criminal intentions; they may offer to take you to a ‘special’ restaurant. Their ruse may be to offer drugged refreshment; never leave valuables in your hotel room exposed or unattended to, even in a locked suitcase.
Place valuables, money, jewellery, airplane tickets, credit cards, passport in a hotel safe deposit box or room safe; familiarize yourself with escape routes in case of fire or other catastrophe; use the door chain or bold lock whenever you are in your room; use the door viewer(peephole) before opening the door to visitors; do not discuss your room number, while standing in the lobby or leave your room key on restaurants or bar tables; keep your room neat so you will notice disturbed or missing items quickly, and don’t return to food or drinks taken half way in the public. This message is brought to you courtesy, Lagos State Security Trust Fund (LSSTF)