Target: Expats

As Bali becomes ever- more international, with battalions of foreigners choosing to relocate here, it is increasingly becoming the target of thieves from around the country.

This week we report on a story concerning two alleged robbers from Sulawesi who were apparently enacting a well-planned operation that saw them steal valuables from six houses in Seminyak and Canggu – both expat-heavy locales – before they were caught red-handed attempting to thieve from a seventh house rented by a foreigner.

It is becoming a familiar story. So what can we do to prevent such criminal acts, which occasionally result in the death of the house occupant?

Bali’s much-maligned dogs have a key role to play. Given their propensity towards explosive bursts of high-pitched barking, dogs that are kept at home are foremost a warning of something that may be untoward. This canine alarm works effectively as a deterrent to those seeking to enter a perceived empty house. And, further, many people from outside of our island are deathly afraid of dogs.

Local residents must also be aware of any suspicious activity or unknown persons lurking in their area; and be prepared to report it straight away. Household staff should also be made aware and instructed on how to contact the authorities, whether the neighbourhood security or police.

In residential areas, signs could be erected informing passersby that the area is being monitored by CCTV – this would be an extension of the government’s already in-place television monitoring of key tourist areas such as beaches and crowed streets. There would be no exact need to place towering cameras all over the island; signs alone would be a preventative measure.

Working on a number of personal-security measures will help to thwart the crime wave sweeping Bali. Everyone has a part to play, to ensure the safety of themselves, and everyone.

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