Police have released advice following a spate of burglaries in Witham.
Homes, sheds and garages have been targeted by thieves who are quick to take advantage of poor security.
Cash, jewellery and electronics are the items most frequently taken from residential properties, whilst bicycles, lawn mowers and power tools are often taken from the sheds and garages.
Braintree and Uttlesford district’s crime prevention advisor, Peter Caulfield said: "Thieves are quick to exploit any lack of security and are only too willing to take anything they can lay their hands on.
"Taking a few relatively simple precautions could make life much more difficult for the burglars and I am more than happy to offer advice.
"Improving security at home need not be expensive; there are often simple solutions that will greatly improve your security or make your home less attractive to thieves.
"A simple security measure for sheds and garages is to prevent people from seeing in; by hanging net curtains at windows for example. There are also many budget-priced shed and garage alarms available and they can be very effective.”
Any residents requiring further advice or assistance should contact Mr Caulfield on 101.