What is Secured by Design?

Date: 30 July 2018

Seeking to achieve sustainable reductions in crime through design and other approaches to help people live in a safer society

According to Guy Ferguson, Chief Executive Officer at Secured by Design (SBD), independent research has shown that if you live on a SBD estate where proven crime prevention techniques have been built into the layout and landscaping and the physical security of buildings, you are 75% less likely to be a victim of crime. But what is SBD and why should you look to incorporate products that have been SBD accredited?

SBD was created in 1989 following the housing boom of the 1960s - 1980s when there was a huge and urgent demand for housing.

Estates were built quickly and cheaply with little consideration given to security. Sky walkways and subways were incorporated into many large estates to separate pedestrians and the rapidly growing number of vehicles. But, this created an environment where escape routes were everywhere and anonymity was absolute. In fact, crime increased significantly – particularly burglary. So in response to this, the Police Service set up SBD to incorporate crime prevention at the planning stage of new developments.

SBD works in partnership with National and Local Government, British and European standards authorities, trade associations, the construction industry, manufacturers and many other organisations to reduce crime and the fear of crime by incorporating proven crime prevention techniques into the built environment and into a wide range of other crime prevention initiatives.

Its work in local communities is carried out day-to-day by a network of more than 200 SBD trained police officers and staff in Police Forces across the country. These officers, known principally as Designing Out Crime Officers, work closely with architects, developers and local authority planners on new build developments and major refurbishments to design out crime at the drawing board stage.

Secured by design

And there are a number of techniques that can be incorporated within a development to reduce the risk of crime. For example, increasing natural surveillance by positioning homes with windows that overlook streets and surrounding footpaths, and limiting movement throughout an estate by eliminating alleyways and cut-throughs, will help certainly help to deter burglars.

However, SBD is also well known for encouraging manufacturers to produce security related products that are capable of resisting physical attack. SBD has an established Police Preferred Specification, which is awarded to businesses that meet its security requirements. This accreditation requires products to be not only tested but also certified. This requires regular re-testing and production audits to ensure product standards are maintained over time – ensuring products are as effective today as they were when they first came to market.

Historically there has been a particular focus on common entry routes such as doors and windows, extending to areas such as a property’s roof.  Now, with evidence that thousands of burglaries happen each year, where entry into a dwelling has been gained by breaking through a wall [1], this element of a building is being given increasing focus.

This leads to our new SBD accredited GypWall QUIET system, which incorporates Gyproc Habito plasterboard.  It has been tested and certified to the onerous STS 202 BR1 attack standard by an independent UK Accreditation Service (UKAS) certification authority. It has gone on to achieve the coveted SBD Police Preferred Specification for its inherent strength to resist physical attack, deter criminal activity and reduce crime.

Undeniably when it comes to designing a new building, it’s definitely worth speaking with SBD directly or with us to discuss your security needs.

For more information about SBD accredited GypWall Quiet system click here


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