Edinburgh firm seeks ex-thieves to test people’s home security ahead of Covid restrictions ending and criminals targeting empty homes

An Edinburgh-based company is seeking former thieves to help people test security weaknesses in their homes ahead of lockdown restrictions ending.

Wednesday, 7th July 2021, 4:55 am

Home security company Boundary has announced it is launching a new ‘borrow-a-burglar’ service. This is a new initiative which will give homeowners the chance to hire someone who has previously been convicted of housebreaking or burglary for a day to come into their home and test ways they might be able to gain entry.

Following the visit, the former thief will explain what precautions they should be taking.

In 2020, Boundary hired former burglar Luke Harris to assist with product testing as well as other operations at the company. Mr Harris, 32, from Wiltshire, gave up a life of looting from unsecure homes six years ago after a 12 year stint of burglaries.

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Luke Harris, who now works for Boundary.
Luke Harris, who now works for Boundary.

Luke is now putting his expertise to good use by heading the new scheme. The salary for Luke and anyone else that joins the initiative is £22 per hour or £154 per day. This works out at £40,000 salary pro-rata but those being hired will not be working every day and a consultation tends to last a whole day.

Boundary was founded in 2018 by CEO Robin Knox and his business partner, Paul Walton. Since then, the Edinburgh start-up has been nominated for SME (Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise) of the Year at the 2021 British Security Awards and received £1.5 million of investment from Skyscanner co-founder Gareth Williams.

Mr Knox said: “Most of us don’t have the mindset of a burglar and therefore wouldn’t spot half of the places they might be able to gain access to in our homes. With lockdown restrictions set to come to an end at some point over the summer, we’d expect criminals to be on high alert for empty homes to target.

“By giving the public the rare opportunity of inviting an ex-burglar into their homes to point out weaknesses, we hope to be able to continue to make Britons feel safe in their own homes.”

The new initiative will give homeowners the chance to hire someone who has previously been convicted of housebreaking or burglary for a day to come into their home and test ways they might be able to gain entry.

Boundary is asking for former burglars to send in their CVs to them through their vacancy page.

Successful entrants will be chosen at random by Friday, July 30 and notified about the one-on-one service visit by Friday, August 6.

Homeowners wanting to sign up for the service on the Boundary website can do so here.

The new initiative varies slightly from a scheme launched last year where Boundary hired a consultant former burglar who would help out with aspects such as product testing as well as advice articles and videos for their blog.

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