Imagine arriving at your business only to find that your perimeter has been breached while you were sleeping or away. This is a business owner’s worst nightmare. Now, imagine having the ability to understand the mindset of an intruder in order to better comprehend what motivates them to break into your property at night. 

To help you better protect your business, we’ve put together a list of the 4 instances that make you an easy target and what you can do to make an intruder stop dead in their tracks. 

The Mind of an Intruder: 4 Problems that Make You an Easy Target

  1. You Don’t Have Perimeter Security Lights (or an Alarm System): As we noted in our blog explaining why lighting is the first step for perimeter security, a study by the UNC Charlotte Department of Criminal Justice found that 24% of convicted burglars said they considered the presence of outdoor lighting (or lack of lighting) when choosing their targets. Intruders don’t want to be seen. Intruders will look first to see if you have security lights and second if you have an alarm system. Without those, you are an easy target. 

    How to Protect: The #1 deterrent to keep intruders off your property is to install a low- cost/low-voltage perimeter lighting system on your fence that will make the bad guys think twice about choosing YOUR property for their dastardly deeds. While a security system itself is better than nothing, it’s designed to work most effectively once the intruder has entered. The key to protecting your business is prevention, and perimeter lights will do the trick. Even if you have a state of the art security camera system, those cameras still can’t see well in the dark, so adding lights at night are essential because the cameras can see the intruder.

    • Lighting prevents the intruder from entering

    • Lighting helps to more easily identify the intruder

    • Lighting turns your cameras from black and white to color mode

  2. You Have Easily Accessible Dark Areas and Blind Spots: What is the most convenient way an intruder breaches your perimeter? They find your blind or dark spots on the property. In some instances, an intruder will case your property before entering. The person will look for blind/dark areas in your perimeter lighting system and camera layout. The more blind spots you have, the greater chance intruders will enter your premises. This makes your business an easy target...every time. 

    How to Protect: You can have the BEST pole lighting system on the market, but if those lights create blind spots, overly illuminate areas, and produce shadows, they’re not going to be very effective at preventing intruders. Here are three key things to include in your perimeter lighting plan: 

    • Go for a lower light level with glare-free even lumen distribution. You don’t need high-cost, high-intensity pole lights to provide effective lighting. Most often,  legacy pole lights are way too bright and expensive, and they were never designed for true perimeter security lighting. A lower, more even lighting distribution removes blind spots and shadows, and glare-free lighting will allow your security cameras to capture better images at night just like during the day.

    • Check your light placement. When possible, opt for placing lights on a fence instead of on poles or more elevated structures as both can create shadows, glare, and blind spots.Using your existing fence saves money, time, and labor. It makes sense as you light up the perimeter, which is the normal point to breach.

    • Watch the spacing. While you may think you are saving money by placing lights farther apart, doing so can cause issues if one light happens to go out, leaving a vast area of darkness. Plus, legacy pole lights are not easy to repair. Instead, the recommended space between fence-mounted low voltage perimeter security lights is every other fence pole or 20 to 30 feet apart so that no matter what, all areas of your property will be adequately covered even if a fixture goes out. The low cost lights make it affordable and easy to service.

  3. You Have Unlit Hiding Spots: Intruders look at their surroundings differently. While you may see your building, cars, streets, etc., someone casing a property will see the same areas as places to climb up, crawl under, enter easily, and hide. When you create a security system, you’re also creating a space for criminals to navigate if not done correctly. How easy or difficult this is is up to you. Similar to blind spots, criminals are drawn to hiding spots when casing your property. These hiding spots are created both by the architecture of your building and your perimeter security system. Much like the other scenarios, the more you have, the easier a target you become. 

    How to Protect - Be Hands On: Be the intruder for a night. It can be easy to think you’ve got your property completely covered by your perimeter lighting system, but walk your property when it's dark because you might have overlooked some areas where potential intruders can hide under the cover of night. To make sure everything within your perimeter is lit appropriately, look at your property through the eyes of an intruder and take several  nighttime walks to make sure you don’t have any spots where intruders can hide. If you can see the blind spots, so can they. If you find any, go back to #2 and make the necessary adjustments to your lighting system so you can bring any hiding spots into the light. The best option is to work with the professionals who can help you navigate your property, someone who understands what intruders are looking for.  

Click here to contact us about perimeter lighting options → 

  1. You Have a Poor Locking System and Many People Have a Spare Key: 58% of break-ins occur through forcible entry according to The easier the door is to enter, the more susceptible you are to a break-in, and if an intruder knows that you are loose with your keys, it’s even easier. 

    How to Protect the Physical Points of Entry: Improve your locking system to make it more intruder-resistant AND be very careful about who you give keys to. Once a person doesn’t need access to your property, it’s also a good idea to change the access control with smart locks such as Salto or Kantech, although the cost of this can vary depending on the recommendation. Another idea is to install keypad locks anywhere you’d normally need a key to enter. There is a bit of an investment up front, but you can change the code as often as you’d like, only giving access to those who you trust to enter your property. 

The bottom line to protecting yourself against the mind and intentions of an intruder: Understanding that all they want to do is steal your assets and sell them for pennies on the dollar. They just don’t care. That is what you are dealing with.

The easy solution is to install a perimeter lighting system and smart locks to encourage any would-be intruders to move right on past your property because they can see that they WILL be seen if they try and make an unwanted visit. Burglars often prowl in the night because the darkness blankets them, and they don’t want to be seen. According to, Police solve only 13% of reported burglary cases because there is often no witness or physical evidence. This is why it’s important to have the right light setup to secure your business. If you can prevent them from climbing or cutting the fence in the first place, that is the best solution.

Need free help creating the ideal perimeter lighting system to protect your property or have questions about how we can help? Fill out our contact form, and we’ll be sure to get you lit and secure shortly.