The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office released advice on keeping your home safe during the holidays.
Look over the following advice to help protect your home and family:
Don't openly display your Christmas tree and gifts in the front window so it is easily visible from the street. It's too tempting for burglars to break the window and grab the wrapped packages.
Burglars know to look for a hidden door key near the main entrance to your home. Don't hide spare keys under rocks, flowerpots, or above ledges on the porch or door. Instead give the spare key to a trusted neighbor.
Burglars prefer to enter through unlocked windows and doors. Sliding windows that are not secure can be seen from a distance. One holiday problem occurs when an exterior Christmas lights extension cords are run inside through a window and prevent it from being secured.
Burglars look for occupancy clues like outdoor lights burning 24 hours a day. They also looked for piled up newspapers or advertising flyers hanging on the door knobs.
Trim hedges and bushes so thieves can't hide behind them.
However your house would normally look when you are at home is the way it should look if you are traveling for the holidays. Burglars prefer to break into homes that are unoccupied because if they are caught in the act, it's considered by law to be less of a crime than if they were to burglarize an occupied home.
Don't leave telephone answering machine messages like, "we are away for the Christmas holidays…please leave a message". If burglars hear that they will know that they have plenty of time to break-in and completely ransack your house.
After Christmas day, don't pile empty boxes from computers, DVD players, or stereo equipment on the street for garbage pickup. It sends a message to the burglars that there are expensive gifts inside.