Many of us have home security systems and doorbell cameras, which are great and increasingly affordable. However, some effective traditional strategies can also help protect your property this summer while you’re away on vacation.

First, consider waiting until you return home to post holiday pictures. Sharing them on Facebook or Instagram while you’re away can alert potential thieves that your home is unoccupied.

“You can also voluntarily register your home security camera with one of the community-based, closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera registries around the Lower Mainland like Surrey’s Project IRIS,” says Linda Annis, Executive Director of Metro Vancouver Crime Stoppers. “This gives police permission to ask you for footage from your security camera should the need arise for video evidence during any crime investigations in your neighbourhood.”

Additionally, ask a neighbor to keep an eye on your property and park their car in your driveway. Have a family member or friend collect your mail, newspapers, and online deliveries. Disconnect your automated garage door opener, keep garbage cans off the street, and put away things in your yard like tools, bikes, ladders and the barbecue.

If you see something out of the ordinary this summer, call police right away. Or if you know who’s behind break-ins on your street, or any other crime, you can send an anonymous tip to Crime Stoppers.

Crime Stoppers accepts tips 24/7 at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) in 115 languages including Punjabi, Hindi, Mandarin and Cantonese. You can also report a tip on Crime Stoppers’ mobile “P3” phone app, or online at There is also a link for reporting tips on the Metro Vancouver Crime Stoppers Facebook page.