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Ex-burglar arming Zurich with ways to curb holiday crime

Zurich has hired an ex-burglar to advise its home insurance policyholders on how to avoid their properties being crowbarred by thieves when they are on holiday.

Bob Turney, a reformed alcoholic and ex-drug addict who has served time for bur-glary and armed robbery, now works as a part-time consultant for the Probation Service.

He is working with Zurich to promote increased awareness of the telltale signs that people leave when going away on holiday that indicate to the burglar that no one is home.

These include a build-up of newspapers in the letter box or milk on the doorstop and leaving valuables exposed. He also warns holidaymakers against writing their home addresses on luggage labels, cautioning that burglars can work in teams with one operative relaying this information to accomplices.

Turney says: “They call summer the silly season and people do all sorts of things that leave their houses unprotected. If people can forget their passport when going on holiday, you can imagine what they think about their home security.”

Zurich Insurance spokeswoman Maria Donald says: “Bob’s advice is sound. Burglars are all too often on the look- out for empty properties and will go to great lengths to find them.”

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