Letter Re: Hiding Things in Plain Sight

Mister Rawles,

Household burglaries are all too common, especially where I live. (In a Cleveland, Ohio suburb. The crooks actually commute out to the suburbs to burglarize!) From news stories, I have observed that : 1.) They aren’t too smart. If they were, they’d have a “real” job!), and 2.) They are usually in a hurry. You’ve mentioned building hidden caches in your blog several times, but have you given any thought to hiding things in plain sight?

For example you could empty out cans of unappealing food items (like dog food, or olives), and using that space for valuables. – Thanks, – Terrence

JWR Replies: Making your own “hide in plain sight” containers is a bit time consuming, but it is a fun exercise for a weekend afternoon. If you carefully remove the label from a steel can, you can saw the can in half. Then empty it out and wash it. After drying it thoroughly, you can stuff it full of valuables and tape it shut. Glue the label back on, and voila! A can that is almost indistinguishable from any others. Some detailed instructions on another method are shown at Instructables.com.

One reputable mail order vendor that sells some very clever mass-produced “diversion” safes is Personal Security Online. Another vendor is PestControls.us. They sell diversion safes that look like books, beer or soda cans, and even rocks. And an even bigger assortment of diversion safe containers is available from eFindOutTheTrurth.com.

Perhaps some readers would care to e-mail me some of their favorite do-it yourself ideas for hiding things in plain sight.