Don Winner's Home Security Tips

  Don Winner, the owner of the highly popular Panama Guide website has been living in Panama for 24 years. I spoke to him today about the community’s fears around the recent violent crime wave in the Pacific Beach Communities. Don feels most break-ins occur due to gaps in security. He gave me some solid tips on how to secure your home:

-          Electronic monitoring: sensors and lights. Make sure your house lights up like a Christmas tree if there is movement outside.

-          Bars on the windows. Make sure the openings in between the bars are small enough so that a child cannot get in. Many invaders use a child to climb into the house through small openings to unlock the front door.

-          Have a security door on a closet that can be used as a safe room. Keep a cell phone and gun in the safe room.

-          If you hear movement in your house, don’t go to investigate. Instead go to your safe room and start calling the police.

-          When you call the police, say, ‘there is a bad guy outside trying to kill me’. Don’t say, ‘I hear a noise’.

-          Have security doors through your house, falling back to your safe room.

-          Use a security door for the front door and LOCK YOUR DOOR.

-          Make sure you know the phone number for the local police and program it into your phone.

-          Have a big scary dog outside your house, and a small yappy dog inside.

Don tells me he has investigated many home invasions and in almost every case the invasion is due to a home owner not being adequately secure. About the recent crime wave in the Pacific Beach Communities, he says, “criminals are not targeting expats, they are targeting people with money”.

To see more of what Don has to say about home invasions and home security, visit and search for "home invasion robbery".