Risk Management Tip
Protect your property from this dangerous crime
You might not expect it, but copper theft is one of the fastest growing crimes in the country, causing nearly $1 billion in losses to U.S. businesses each year. Copper is particularly valuable as scrap used in plumbing and electrics, and thieves are known to sell it to recycling companies and scrap yards. Thieves look for copper everywhere – from electrical power stations to constructions sites as well as individual homes, whether they are occupied or vacant.
Homeowners and business owners alike can take precautions to protect the metal around their property. Some preventative measures include:
- Increase or consider motion-activated lighting outside your home and include lighting on fixtures like AC units.
- Consider a locking air conditioner cage that will protect your compressor.
- Secure any equipment you might use in your garage or in an outbuilding where possible, and use a perimeter security system with motion detectors.
- Mark any metals around your property with your name or another identifier using engraving equipment.
- Ensure that access to under your home, where copper piping is typically run, is secure. This is especially important in seasonal and elevated homes.
- Remove trees or ladders that thieves could use to gain access to your home, and trim or install lighting around landscaping that could allow criminals to hide around your property.
- Speak to your insurance advisor to ensure you have adequate insurance for metal theft. Consider taking a visual inventory of the exterior of your property, much as you would for valuables you keep inside your home.