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The effectiveness of burglary security devices

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journal contribution
posted on 2014-10-29, 14:40 authored by Andromachi Tseloni, Rebecca Thompson, Louise Nicholas, Nick Tilley, Graham Farrell
This study measures the effectiveness of anti-burglary security devices, both individually and in combination. Data for 2008–2012 from the Crime Survey of England and Wales are analysed via the Security Impact Assessment Tool to estimate Security Protection Factors (SPFs). SPFs indicate the level of security conferred relative to the absence of security devices. It finds that, for individual devices, external lights and door double locks or deadlocks, are most effective but, counter-intuitively, burglar alarms and dummy alarms confer less protection than no security. Combinations of devices generate positive interaction effects that increase protection more than additively. In particular, combinations with door and window locks plus external lights or security chains confer at least 20 times greater protection against burglary with entry than no security. Although further research is needed, the findings are consistent with improved security playing an important role in long-term declines in burglary rates.


This work is supported by an Economic and Social Research Council Secondary Data Analysis Initiative Phase 1 grant (project REF: ESRC-SDAI (ES/K003771/1).



  • Social Sciences


  • Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies

Published in

Security Journal


in press


1 - 19


TSELONI, A. ... et al., 2017. The effectiveness of burglary security devices. Security Journal, 30 (2), pp.646–664


Palgrave Macmillan


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