Not too many years ago, elaborate electronic home security systems were the stuff of fantasy. They were reserved for Inspector Gadget movies or the Mission Impossible television show.

This isn’t the case, anymore. Touch-sensitive sensors are every day items. Heat sensors are affordable and practical. Motion sensors are common and cameras are just about everywhere. Instead of rare, these days most people carry small cameras around each day as part of their cell phone. The age of the gadget is upon us.

Furthermore, all of this technology has done what popular technology has always done: it has come down in price and in size and weight. All this bodes very well for home security systems, which are all the more useful if they are small, hidden and affordable, according to the experts at Black Hat Security.



Homeowners, meanwhile, think beyond the threat of unwanted humans on their property. There are also a myriad of threats from smoke, fire, carbon dioxide buildup, radon and Mother Nature in the form of prolonged freezing weather, floods, tornadoes and storms of every ilk.

Here’s what you can do these days to tighten security in your home:

Video surveillance

Cameras are cheap, fairly easy to install and have the added benefit in the computer age of allowing you to see what they see in real time. You can be at the beach in another country and tune into what is happening right outside your front door. You can even have the camera scan the scenery under your control from distant lands.

Motion sensors

Motion sensors can not only serve to alert you when something is moving on your property, but they can be rigged to turn on lights or sound alarms, which can scare off would-be prowlers. In addition, you might want lights to go on so you can see your way to your front door when you get home in the evening. A well-lit area is a safer area.

Remote control locks

In the age of computers, you can keep eyes and ears on your home from afar, but you can also unlock and lock the front door from anywhere. That means, you can allow a package to be delivered to your home while you are away, using a camera to get a look at the delivery person and the package. When the door bell rings, you can then answer it remotely, talking to the person at the door and instructing them to leave the package inside. You then open the front door and watch the person put the package inside and leave the home. Once they have stepped back outside, you can lock the door again.

Smoke detectors

Don’t get so hung up on rigging your home to thwart would-be prowlers to the point that you forget the basics, like smoke alarms. These should be situated near kitchens, garages and bedrooms and near furnaces and fireplaces

Carbon dioxide alerts

Carbon dioxide is not only threatening the planet’s atmosphere, but it is odorless and deadly in tight quarters. Without proper ventilation, carbon dioxide can build up from fairly innocent-sounding items, like gas stove or furnace pilot lights. Don’t let carbon dioxide sneak up on you.


Radon is a naturally occurring colorless, odorless. tasteless gas that is radioactive. Sources of radon include certain types of soil, meaning it could be a threat for homeowners who simply have a basement.

Radon detectors are available. While the chemical with an atomic number 86 is not considered a threat in small doses, over time it is known to cause lung cancer.

Remote control

Nowadays, you can turn lights on in your home from anywhere if you have the remote system rigged to a computerized device, such as a smartphone, tablet, laptop or PC.

Not only can you turn the lights on and off, but you can raise the thermostat in your home from afar, as well. If a winter storm hits your neighborhood while you are away, you can turn up the heat so your water pipes don’t freeze. When you figure out the freeze threat has passed, you can then lower the thermostat in your home back to a cooler level if you want.