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Types of Burglary and How to Prevent Them

Types of Burglary and How to Prevent Them

A thief breaks into your home and takes items that are expensive or meaningful to you. You’ve been burglarized. Did you know, however, that there are several different types of burglary? By knowing the types of burglary and how to prevent them, you can take the appropriate steps now so that you’re not stuck putting the pieces back together later.

Completed Burglary

Perhaps the most straightforward definition of the different types of burglary, completed burglary simply means that someone who had no legal right to be in the structure gained entry and successfully completed a theft. They may have forced their way in or simply opened an unlocked door and walked inside. Either way, the crime has been committed.

Forcible Entry

As the name implies, burglary by forcible entry occurs when a criminal uses force to enter a structure and steal things. They may kick down a door or force open a window. Forcible entry also applies when the thief uses tools to break in or cut screens. Such tools also include the unauthorized use of keys or lock picks that don’t leave any damage or marks but allow the person to gain illegal access, nonetheless.

Although it doesn’t necessarily involve force, authorities include in this category thieves who hide in a structure in order to sneak out and commit burglary when everyone else has left.

Unlawful Entry Without Force

A criminal wanders into your house through an open sliding glass door. He finds a purse, rifles through it, and steals cash, a necklace, and credit cards. He just committed burglary by unlawful entry without force. The kicker in these crimes is that they’re so easily committed because of an unlocked door or window. Thieves can saunter in and out at their leisure without doing damage, setting off alarms, or making any noise.

Attempted Forcible Entry

You return home after a late night at the office. Your wife and kids are out of town, visiting her mother, so you plan to eat a quick bowl of cereal and fall into bed. As you get out of the car and walk to the front door, something seems off. There are heavy gouges around the door lock and dents where it looks like someone has kicked at the door. You call the police to check the premises, but the house is secure and there’s no one lurking around outside. Those familiar with the types of burglary and how to prevent them will recognize this as attempted forcible entry: they tried to get in, but gave up and left.

You Know the Types of Burglary: Now, How Do You Prevent Them?

Break-ins and attempted break-ins are incredibly frightening. Thankfully, the main strategy that will keep a thief from actually gaining entry to your home is the same one that will make them think twice about trying in the first place: discouragement.

What are the ways to deter a thief from trying to break into your house?

Keep your doors and windows closed and locked. Really, this is an easy one. Don’t let thieves walk right in. If you like to keep a sliding glass door or window open for breezes or pets, install a sensor that activates if it’s opened beyond a certain point or install motion detectors that will alert you of any people moving around the premises.

Get a professionally-installed home security system. If you already have an older system, upgrade it so that it’s up-to-date and functioning properly. A comprehensive home security system should include sensors that notify you (and authorities) if a door or window opens or closes while the system is armed, as well as if glass breaks somewhere. It can also feature motion detectors that will alert if someone is moving around inside the residence while the system is turned on. Many thieves will keep right on moving if they see you have a security system.

Install cameras as part of your home security system. Another clear deterrent, this will also allow you to check live-streaming footage of what’s going on at home no matter where you are in the world. If someone attempts and fails to gain entry, it will catch footage of them, making it much more likely that the criminal will be apprehended.

Get peace of mind with mobile notifications. Especially if you have a spouse, kids, repair technicians, or others who come and go from the house when you aren’t there, mobile notifications from your security system are a great way to keep tabs on who’s entering where and when. That way, if something seems out of place, you’ll know right away rather than not finding out until you return home hours later.


At ProTech Security, we have a strong history of experience, innovation, and customer service. The ProTech Security Advantage is more than 30 years of service in Northeast Ohio and a strong commitment to providing quality, cost-effective protection for homes, businesses, educational institutions and government facilities. To see what ProTech Security can do for you, contact us today.

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