The “Night Watcher”

There have been reports in the national press about a spate of multi-million pound armed burglaries across the South East of England.

The so-called “Night Watcher” has been targeting high-net-worth properties and families. It is estimated that over £10 million worth of valuables have been stolen, made-up predominately of high value jewellery and cash.

The thief is professional, armed, and willing to use violence. The police think that he spends weeks preparing for a raid.  This involves staking out properties, monitoring comings and goings, and possibly even entering properties to assess the layout.

Details of the robberies have been in the national press, including the Mail and the Evening Standard.

Unfortunately, the worst can happen

Stanhope Cooper have had cases in the past where client family homes have been burgled. One client suffered an aggravated burglary in the run up to Christmas where over £4 million worth of jewellery was stolen.  In these cases we have done what we can to assist in the aftermath, but quite often the emotional damage has been done.

With this in mind, Stanhope Cooper have spoken to our security adviser partners. As well as general risk management measures, the following are some extra steps that can be taken to manage the risk of burglary:

  • Ensure that your alarm is monitored by the police / alarm monitoring centre. This can be done through a burglar alarm monitoring contract that can be organised through your provider.
  • Have a dummy safe installed. This can be filled with a small amount of valuables whilst the “real” safe can hold he majority.
  • Install the dummy safe in a main living area. This means there is no need for the burglar to proceed to other areas of the property, where other people or family members may be.
  • Keep a reasonable amount of cash in the dummy safe. Jewellery and other valuables need to be sold on. Cash does not, and so is a quick win for a burglar.

Speak to your insurance broker for further advice

Stanhope Cooper does not only provide insurance cover, but risk management advice.  And remember, the implementation of risk management measures can have a beneficial effect on the price of your home insurance premium. If you would like to discuss further then please do not hesitate to contact your broker who will be happy to help.

Written by: Dan Foley

Date: Wednesday 14th February, 3:15pm