Household- and Area-Level Differences in Burglary Risk and Security Availability over Time
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This chapter is based upon findings from a project which sought to establish which burglary security devices work for whom and in what context. A large body of previous research suggests that crime risk and vulnerability vary across individuals, households and areas. From this, we can assume that anti-burglary security devices may not exert the same protective effect for all households in all areas. Certain households may also be less likely to have anti-burglary devices installed at all. This chapter investigates how household and area differences may explain unequal burglary risks and security availability. It examines the relationship between burglary risk and the availability of the most effective security device combination ‘on a budget’ – window locks, internal lights on a timer, double door locks and external lights on a sensor (WIDE) – across population groups of different ethnicities, household composition, tenure, income, number of cars, and type of area of residence from 1993 to 2011/2012. It thus provides context to the security hypothesis for the crime drop using burglary in England and Wales as a case study.
KeywordsBurglary protection trends Domestic burglary trends Socio-economic factors Unequal security availability Uneven crime drop Victimisation divides
Crime Survey for England and Wales
Department for Work and Pensions
Familiarity, Accessibility, Visibility, Occupancy, Rewards
Houses in multiple occupation
Household Reference Person
Office for National Statistics
Window and door locks
Window locks, door locks and security chains
Window locks, door locks, security chains and CCTV cameras
External lights on a sensor, window and door locks
Window locks, internal lights on a timer, double door locks and external lights on a sensor
The authors are grateful to Dr. James Hunter and Professor Nick Tilley for insightful comments. Any errors are the authors’ responsibility.
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