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Serial Northeast burglary suspects' 'sophisticated' tactics: 4 ways to protect your home

Home security experts tell Fox News Digital that proper landscaping, a reserved social media presence and hardwired alarm systems are among the steps that Americans can take to best prevent themselves from being burglarized as details emerge about an alleged serial burglary ring that swiped more than $4 million in jewelry and valuables from dozens of properties in the Northeast.

Massachusetts State Police recently announced that four Rhode Island men with connections to a “violent Providence-based gang” have been charged for their alleged roles in “43 burglaries and break-ins across 25 towns in Massachusetts between 2018 and 2024.”

Investigators said the majority of homes targeted “were persons of Indian or South Asian heritage” as the suspects allegedly operated “on a belief that their households were more likely to contain precious metals, jewelry and other valuable heirlooms.”

“Property reported stolen… included many pieces of diamonds and other gems and studded jewelry with values of individual pieces up to approximately $75,000; gold bracelets, necklaces and earrings and large quantities of cash,” the Massachusetts State Police said. “In several instances, the property had been secured in locked safes, weighing up to 400 pounds, which the perpetrators removed from the residence along with the stolen valuables. The aggregate reported value of the stolen property exceeds $4 million.” 

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Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan called the burglary ring “very sophisticated” because they “were disciplined in concealing their identity, avoiding alarms and minimizing cell phone use before, during and after the breaks and using Wi-Fi jammers.” 

Home security experts tell Fox News Digital that there are several ways to prevent your home from being targeted by burglars, and it starts with its appearance outside.

Proper landscaping

“Look at the shrubs around your home. What you try not to have is shrubs that would obscure a window so that you could have people who sneak in and get to a window and can work on a window unobserved,” said Michael Balboni, a former New York Homeland Security adviser. “If you walk around your house, look inside and see what you can see from the outside, you might be surprised.”

Balboni added, “There are four Ds as it comes to protecting a home … it’s deter, detect, then delay – so you have time to respond and police can respond – and then defeat.”

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Massachusetts break-in map

Hardwired alarm system

Bill Daly, a former FBI investigator, told Fox News Digital on Monday that when it comes to home alarm systems: “If you are just relying on cellphone communication to send your alarm, that could be subject to some type of jamming or interference.”

“So, having some type of a monitored alarm, hard-wired alarm, whether it’s through your optical cable or your telephone system that could be monitored by an outside company … I think is very important.” 

He added that “a Wi-Fi jammer would basically nullify your home router, so it would prevent communications or whatever you have coming from a device.”

Limited online profile

In general, Daly said it’s best to assume a low profile “whether that is on social media, or professional sites like LinkedIn, or any other publicly available information that may indicate” someone is doing “well in their business, that they are collectors of certain kinds of valuables – whether it’s art, coins – or anything else to give an indication that they could potentially be a victim.”

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Items recovered after burglary ring bust

He also said that when contractors are visiting for home maintenance, “[M]ake sure you don’t let them know what valuables you may have around.”

“It may not be those people working for the contractors, but it could be people who those workers know in various communities … who may be looking to find targets,” Daly told Fox News Digital.

Anchored safes

Regarding home safes, Daly said they should “be weighty enough and also should be anchored into some type of a beam in the house, not to a drywall, not to some kind of flimsy location, but to a joist in the home or some type of external beam to the home, so it would be very difficult to break that.” 

And alarms, he continued, can be attached to safes as well to let people know if they are being jarred or jostled open. 

 

“There are a number of things that can be done to slow down [thieves], to alert authorities, alert yourself that something is happening and prevent someone from stealing all your valuables,” Daly said.

Fox News’ Ashley Papa contributed to this report.

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