Valued Property

  • House
  • Vehicles(car, van, truck)etc
  • Electronic equipment (television, computer, Stereo system, cell phone)
  • Furniture
  • Money
  • Jewelry
  • Your Home Network
  • Websites/Social Accounts

All of the above-mentioned items are shown in a list of the valued property that can be owned to name a few. These listed items are the main ones which I will be dealing with in this website and offer some of the best advice and protection available in securing your property.   Some are tangible and intangible property. Tangible items are physical items that can be touch. On the other hand, intangible items are items that are non-physical for example a home network.

All of these items are part of your valued property and they all can be destroyed, damaged or stolen. Therefore the above list of property can be protected and secured. There are different ways in securing and protecting these different types of property.

Some Quotes

“Every man has a property in his own person. This nobody has a right to, but himself.” (John Locke, Second Treatise on Civil Government)

“The reason why men enter into society is the preservation of their property.” (John Locke, Second Treatise on Civil Government)

“Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws  in the first place.” (Frédéric Bastiat, The Law)

The House

There are many ways a house can be secured or protected. It depends on what you are protecting and securing it from and who you are protecting and securing it from. These can range from fire, water, the wind, smoke, man-made disasters, natural disaster like (hurricanes, flooding, tornadoes etc.), intruders, prowlers, burglars, stray animals. I must stress that securing a home starts with its perimeters and boundaries.  All of these can be covered by a good home insurance policy. The only problem is that the insurance companies are not covering your house unless you have some form of security in place protecting it from intruders, prowlers, burglars, stray animals  If not you are paying through the roof for the coverage. To name some tools for securing your home alarm systems, cameras, motion detector/sensors and watch or guard dog.

The Car

Securing your car is not very difficult yet today there are still so many cars being stolen. These simple factors that can be taken into account to secure your property. Where you live, where you work, where you often visit, where you park your car, has to be taking into account.  A good car alarm installed in your car is necessary today. The sound of a car alarm going off in an urban area the likely-hood of a neighbor, a pass-bier hearing that car alarm will deter any car thieves. For those who live in the rural areas, no matter how many alarm you have the possibility of someone hearing that alarm will be fruitless.  I will list some of the tools that can be used to secure any vehicle.

  • vehicle alarm
  • GPS tracking
  • enclosed garage
  • car cams
  • steering locks
  • anti-thief locking devices

Electronic Equipment

The image shows some of the electronic equipment most homes may have. The large items you need to photograph them and the serial number, model, and make and store those photos safely. A database of all your equipment should be kept of all your electronic/tech items. I would also recommend having these items marked, some local law enforcement department does offer this service free. The smaller items that can be marked and photograph also with the serial numbers, model and make should be lock away. If you have a safe, depending on the sizes you can place more expensive items in it for safe keeping. In the USA there is the website https://reportit.leadsonline.com/ that allows anyone living in the USA to use it to store a list of their valuable items, with serial numbers

Furniture

Some homeowner never taught that their furniture can be a target for stealing.  Antique furniture is a big seller in some countries and is being stolen daily. The best way to secure antique furniture is to photograph them, look for distinguishing marks, also photograph the area where those marks, use a property marker to mark them in a concealed area. These notes must be kept and photos of each piece of antique furniture and be stored away.

Money:

There is a saying “money is the root of all evil”. Not everyone believes this but money has caused many people to do some hideous crimes today and sometimes you have to save them from themselves.

A number of persons were asked where there would hide money in the house and these were the  20 unique places that came up in the survey.

Effective Places to Hide Money

1. In an envelope taped to the bottom of a kitchen shelf

2. In a watertight plastic bottle or jar in the tank on the back of your toilet

3. In an envelope at the bottom of your child’s toy box

4. In a plastic baggie in the freezer

5. Inside of an old sock in the bottom of your sock drawer

6. In an empty aspirin bottle in the bathroom (bundled up with a rubber band around it)

7. In the pocket of a particular shirt in your closet

8. In a “random” folder in your filing cabinet

9. In an envelope taped to the bottom of your cat’s litter box

10. In an envelope taped to the back of a wall decoration

11. In between several pages in a random book or two on your bookshelf

12. Buried in a jar in the back yard (my grandfather, incidentally, did this very thing)

13. In an envelope in the glove compartment of your car

14. Underneath a potted plant (or even buried in a small jar in the soil)

15. In an envelope taped to the bottom of a dresser drawer (so you can reach it from the
inside of the dresser below it)

16. Inside of a big coffee cup in the back of a cupboard

17. Inside your Christmas decoration box

18. Inside of an empty bottle of Guinness in the back of the fridge with the cap seemingly in place (smash it to get the cash)

19. In a plastic baggie inside of a flour or coffee container

20. In an envelope inside of a DVD case

There are two good places to store money for me. There are better protected in these areas.

  1. The banks/financial institutions
  2. A good safe- if you have to keep money at home

Jewelry:

Wall safe

Another important piece of property found in the home and need to be protected. Jewelry can be placed in security deposit area away from the home or in a very good safe place at the home.

Drop safe

Most builders/contractors are including safes into their building plans. If you are building a house or  your own business, this should be one of your main priorities.

There are many types of safes.

  • Floor safes
  • Wall safes
  • Dropped safe
  • custom safe (regular standing safe)
  • Fireproof safes

Network at Home/Business

We take this likely among most computer users, but for most people, their internet router is the very most important electronic device in their home. This links all of their devices together and to the world, so it has a highly privileged position that crackers/hackers or network intruders can exploit.

Well, many consumer and small-business routers come with insecure default settings, have unsecured backdoor accounts, expose legacy services and have software that is consumed with basic flaws. Most of these problems can’t be fixed by the network user, but there are many actions that can be taken to at least protect these devices from many automated attacks. Don’t let your router be a target for hackers.

  • Avoid buying routers supplied by ISPs.
  • Change the default admin password.
  • Turn off Management interface from the internet.
  • Restrict IPS even inside the LAN
  • Turn on HTTPS access to the router interface
  • Change the router’s LAN IP
  • Choose a difficult Wi-Fi password with strong security protocol
  • Disable WPS (Wi-Fi Protected Setup).
  • Less services your router to the internet
  • Custom firmware can be installed for more security
  • Keep your router’s firmware up to date
  • MAC address filtering can keep other devices off your Wi-Fi network
  • Port forwarding should be combined with IP filtering

Website/Social Accounts

1. SQL injection

SQL injection attacks are when an attacker uses a web form field or URL parameter to gain access to or manipulate your database. You can easily prevent this by always using parameterized queries, most web languages have this feature and it is easy to implement. When you use standard Transact-SQL it is easy to unknowingly insert rogue code into your query that could be used to change tables, get information and delete data.

2. Keep software up to date

It may seem obvious, but ensuring you keep all software up to date is important in keeping your website secure. This applies to both the server operating system and any software you may be running on your websites such as a CMS or forum.

3. Error messages

Be careful with how much information you give away in your error messages. Provide only minimal errors to your users, to ensure they don’t leak secrets present on your server (e.g database passwords). Don’t provide full exception details either, as these can make complex attacks like SQL injection far easier. Keep detailed errors in your server logs, and show users only the information they need.

4. Passwords

Everyone knows they should use complex passwords, but that doesn’t mean they always do. It is crucial to use strong passwords to your server and website admin area, but equally also important to insist on good password practices for your users to protect the security of their accounts.

5. XSS

Cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks inject malicious JavaScript into your pages, which then runs in the browsers of your users, and can change page content, or steal information to send back to the attacker. eg, if you show comments on a page without validation, then an attacker might submit comments containing script tags and JavaScript, which could run in every other user’s browser and steal their login cookie, allowing the attack to take control of the account of every user who viewed the comment. You need to ensure that users cannot inject active JavaScript content into your pages.

6. Server side validation/form validation

Validation should always be done both on the browser and server side. The browser can catch simple failures like mandatory fields that are empty and when you enter text into a numbers only field.

7.  Website security tools

Once you think you have done all you can then it’s time to test your website security. The most effective way of doing this is via the use of some website security tools, often referred to as penetration testing or pen testing for short.

There are many commercial and free products to assist you with this. They work on a similar basis to scripts hackers will use in that they test all know exploits and attempt to compromise your site using some of the previously mentioned methods such as SQL injection.

8. File uploads

Letting users upload files to your website can be a big security risk, even if it’s simply to change their avatar. The risk is that any file uploaded however innocent it may look could contain a script that when executed on your server completely opens up your website.

9. HTTPS

HTTPS is a protocol used to provide security over the Internet. HTTPS guarantees to users that they’re talking to the server they expect and that nobody else can intercept or change the content they’re seeing in transit.

How to protect yourself on Social Networks

Social networks are all about staying in touch with friends and family. With the use of mobile devices makes it even easier to share.

A few minutes on a social media is enough time to give away enough personal information to compromise your privacy and even open yourself up to identity theft. I will share now some tips with you as in how to protect yourself online:

  • Know your friends and be selective: How do you know the person you just added is real? Only “friend” people you know in the real world.
  • The internet is there forever: Once you put it out there, it could have been copied or printed somewhere else.
  • Private setting manages carefully: share information with family and friends.
  • Shut/close down old account: Don’t risk leaving personal data in an old account, such as a MySpace page you haven’t used in years, or on an online dating site you no longer need.
  • Be careful of some links: Even if they’re from friends. People who want to inflict harm will prey on your friends also.
  • Social media link together: eg, a photo you post to Twitter may automatically post to your Facebook profile.
  • Keep personal information private: Do not give anyone your personal information online and never share your home address, phone number, Social Security number, or other personal identifying information.
  • Never Auto login to apps:  Make sure that you don’t have your apps set to automatically log you in and that you don’t have your computer’s browser “remember” your login and password. That way if someone does get access to your devices, they can’t automatically access your social sites.
  • Change your passwords frequently: Choose hard-to-guess passwords that are at least eight characters long and a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols, and change them regularly. Also, make sure you use different passwords for each account.
  • GPS on Smartphone’s: If you plan to share images online, make sure that you turn off the GPS on your device to keep your exact location private.

Share and enjoy!

2 thoughts on “Your Valued Property”

  1. I am totally paranoid about security. I never leave my home without putting the alarm on. I’m not sure about putting expensive technology in a safe. Firstly, my safe is not big enough and also it’s a bit of a bother to do that every time I leave my house. Jewelry I do put in a safe but I don’t use it as often. Thanks for a great article!

    1. Thank you, Hollie, for your comment. In today world we have to be serious about the security of our homes and property. As you said you are totally paranoid about the security of your home and may have probably experienced or have been close to someone who has their home broken into. Most people are not worried about the loss. The biggest concerns are the violations upon them self and property. You don’t have to go into expensive safes but a simple one is good to have and preferably if it is bolted down or embedded into a wall.

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