Washington, DC

Photo by PoPville flickr user sciascia

Dear PoPville,

I am writing to let you know about a burglary we just experienced in 16th st heights. I live in a group house and we came home Thursday (11/15) to see that burglars had broken in, taken lots of computers/chargers/other electronics, left everything disheveled, and left. We’ve talked to the police, but we wanted to make sure everyone takes extra precautions to secure their homes and property. Here are a few things I wish we had done; I’d love it if other people could use these ideas to prevent something similar happening to them:

–Make sure all doors and windows are securely closed and locked. Seems obvious but sometimes there are doors or windows you forget.

–Hide small electronics in very hard to find places. If my external hard drive had been better hidden, I might still have it. It looks like these guys rooted through lots of stuff but were generally in a hurry. Larger electronics may be harder to hide well but think about where you might be able to put things. Consider taking laptops with you to work/school, especially if you will be gone for a few days.

–Write down and securely store serial numbers and other identifying data for all electronics, including laptops, cameras, and phones. E-mail it to yourself or store it online somewhere so you can access it if you lose your computer.

We’re going to check online and see if anyone’s trying to sell our stuff, but if anyone has ideas for ways to try to track it down, we’d love to hear it. We do have a few serial numbers so we might be able to prove some things are ours, but really any ideas are welcome. How have other people dealt with this sort of thing?


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