Security Standards Explained
April 15, 2016
Throughout the National Home Security Month website, we often reference security standards and legislation that properties should abide by in order to achieve the required level of security.
However, while we don’t expect you to learn all the ins and outs of the latest standards, it is important to have a basic understanding so that you know if your home complies. Taking a practical approach to security will minimise risks, meet regulatory requirements, and could even reduce home insurance premiums.
As a result, we here at National Home Security Month have cut through the jargon to tell you everything you need to know, so you can be assured that your family, belongings, and property are protected.
British Standards (BS)
A British Standard certifies that a product meets the mandatory security requirements to ensure that it is of high quality and reliable. These are set out by the British Standards Institute (BSI), and act as a benchmark for quality of goods.
The BSI undertakes security testing and certification services for windows, doors and locks – BS 7950 for window security, PAS 24 for door security and BS 3621 for locks. Testing services include weather tightness, endurance and security.
If the BSI certify that a security product meets the required security standard, they are awarded the BSI Kitemark, which can be found on product packaging and the products themselves. This stamp of approval acts as an excellent visual deterrent to potential thieves. The BS symbol is recognised worldwide as a symbol of quality, trust and safety, and proves that the product has been tested over and above the minimum legal requirements for quality.
You might also see the CE symbol on security products. This marking is mandatory and proves that it meets the minimum legal requirements as set out by the European Union.
A technical specification is a document that outlines and defines a set of requirements that a product must meet or exceed. In regards to home security, TS007 and TS008 are the common specifications referenced.
TS007 is a security standard for replacement cylinders and protective door furniture and was introduced amid concerns over the growth in lock-snapping crimes. The TS007 standard uses a three star system, in which the cylinder or a combination of security furniture must have an accumulative three stars to meet the minimum-security requirements. The star rating will be indicated above the Kitemark on the packaging and the product itself.
The TS008 specification refers to the security of letterplates and is in response to lock manipulation and key fishing attacks.
Secured by Design
Secured by Design is the official UK Police initiative supporting the principles of ‘designing out crime’. The scheme promotes the use of security standards and products receive the stamp of approval once they have met Secured by Design’s rigorous testing guidelines.
Research has indicated that homes using products and materials that meet Secured by Design’s standard are up to 75% less likely to be burgled and show a reduction of 25% in criminal damage.
The Government’s new housing standards regime ensures that greater levels of security are in place to protect new homes, regulating against poor quality doors, windows and associated hardware.
Under Document Q, all new doors (including garage doors) and windows should be made to meet the security requirements of PAS24:2016, or other standards that exceed or meet this standard. This is important to consider if you are thinking of building your own property.
If you’d like any additional advice about home security standards, please visit the Secured by Design or British Standards Institute website. For home security products, head over to the Yale website.