By YOSUKE WATANABE/ Staff Writer
February 6, 2023 at 19:01 JST
On top of shelves lined with security goods, a signs states, “Security measures to prevent break-ins through the window,” at a Super Viva Home store in Shin-Toshin, Saitama Prefecture, on Feb. 1. (Yosuke Watanabe)
SAITAMA--A recent string of violent burglaries across Japan has sparked a rush to beef up home security, with some stores seeing security products flying off the shelves.
Customers flocked to a section of the Super Viva Home Saitama Shin-Toshin home center store lined with security products on Feb. 1.
“I’m scared of robberies,” said a woman in her 50s living in Saitama Prefecture who was at the store. “I came here to buy film sheets to keep my windows from being broken.”
She said she visited the store after seeing news reports of the burglaries.
The recent highly publicized robberies share the common factor that residents were attacked while they were at home. Some cases resulted in deaths of the victims.
Special film sheets that make it difficult to break windows are selling particularly well, according to Arclands Co., headquartered in Niigata Prefecture, which operates the Super Viva Home chain.
“Never in the past decade have we seen such a surge in sales of security products,” an Arclands staff member said.
At just a few hundred yen (a little over $2), sales of the film sheets in the 10 days through Jan. 31 totaled more than 10 times seen in the same period last year, the company said.
Sales of auxiliary locks, which prevent a window from opening even if it is broken and unlocked, have increased fivefold.
Sales of security cameras and outdoor sensor lights also increased 1.5 times.
Products that run on dry-cell batteries or solar power and require no installation work are selling well, according to the company.
“With violent burglaries raising public interest in such products, we feel that people are becoming more aware of security,” the Arclands staff member said.
Cainz, a major home center headquartered in Saitama Prefecture, also saw an increase in security product sales.
Sales of such goods, particularly alarms that go off in response to a break-in through a window and portable personal safety alarms, rose about six times higher in the week through Jan. 29 compared to the same period last year.
Major security service provider Secom Co., headquartered in Tokyo, said it received more than five times the usual number of inquiries from Jan. 20 to 31 about home security systems.
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