What to Do When

Active Attacker

The possibility of an armed assailant on campus is extremely remote but there are things you should consider for your personal safety.

It is essential for the safety of occupants and emergency responders that individuals comply with instructions provided by emergency personnel at all times. For their own safety, emergency personnel must initially consider all individuals as potential threats.

  • Be aware of your environment, plan, know your exits, assess the situation, and react quickly
  • Choose Action over Fear while considering the three main options
    • Get Out - if you are in close proximity to an armed assailant, run away from the subject
    • Hide - if you cannot flee, or do not know the location of the shooter, hide in a locked or barricaded room and turn out the lights (additional direction is below)
    • Fight – if confronted by the shooter, as a last resort, fight for survival. Improvise weapons to disarm and incapacitate the armed assailant.

Be Prepared:

  • Install the AlertWesternU app (alert.westernu.ca)
  • Western Special Constable Service can be reached at 519-661-3300; save the number to your cell phone
  • Designate two places to hide in your building; assess the security of your hiding places, does your door have a lock?

What to Do:

  • If you are in a classroom, room or office, stay there, secure the door and windows
  • If the door does not lock consider barricading the door with tables and chairs
  • If you are in a corridor, go into the closest office not already secured
  • Close curtains or blinds where possible; stay away from windows and doors
  • Stay low and keep quiet; cell phones should be put on quiet or vibrate mode
  • If the fire alarm is activated, remain where you are and await further instructions
  • If possible, monitor westernu.ca for updates; media reports may be the first available information

Actions to Avoid:

  • DO NOT open the door once it has been secured until you are officially advised “all clear” or are certain it is emergency response personnel at the door
  • DO NOT travel down long corridors
  • DO NOT assemble in large open areas (e.g. cafeterias or assembly points)
  • DO NOT call 911 unless you have immediate concern for your safety, the safety of others, or feel you have critical information that will assist emergency personnel; keep phone lines clear

Be Aware

If a situation or person makes you feel uncomfortable for whatever reason, go with your feelings. Immediately remove yourself from the area or person. Sometimes we dismiss our internal judgment capabilities. Learn to use your internal system to improve your safety.

Dark sky behind Midd. College building

To live safely, incorporate safe behaviour into your day to day routines - make safety a habit.

  • Walk with Foot Patrol , a friend or near a group of people. Travel in well-lit high traffic areas. Avoid short cuts, treed pathways, and poorly lit parking lots. If you must travel an extra distance in order to ensure your safety then do so. If jogging, go with a friend.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Walk with your head up, this will project confidence. Being alert will enable you to view your surroundings, identify a potential problem or possibly an assailant.
  • Be alert. Have your keys ready before you enter your residence or vehicle. Keep your personal belongings close by and secure.
  • If you feel that you are being followed, seek immediate assistance from a school, business, hospital, or any place that you can reach safely. To prevent a possible reoccurrence or potential risk to others, notify the police of the incident.
  • Keep in mind that anything you carry could be used as a weapon and may be taken away and used against you. If confronted, do not introduce any objectinto the scenario. Personal safety alarms are a benefit, if they are heard.
  • Avoid travelling alone. If you do, lock your vehicle doors and stick to well traveled routes. Consider purchasing a cell phone, and a “Highway Help Sign” in the event your vehicle breaks down. Never hitchhike or pick up strangers.
  • Whether at school or at home, always lock your doors. THIS INCLUDES ROOMS IN RESIDENCE. This will help prevent an intruder DAY OR NIGHT. If you start now, the action will become part of your day-to-day routine.
  • Keep your residence well lit. This will give the impression to outsiders that someone is home. Don’t forget to turn the lights off during the day. Utilize window coverings to conceal your activities and the property you own.
  • If a stranger comes to the door, don’t open it. Keep the door locked and have them speak through the door. This is a preventative measure. Some intruders have forced their way into a residence. Being cautious is not being rude. Remember that your safety comes first.
  • Communicate with your family and roommates. If you are leaving, let them know your plans and expected time of return. A phone call saying you will be late will prevent unnecessary worrying. People care about you – be considerate.
  • Document all serial numbers of valuable property and store the information in a safe place. If your residence is ever broken into and valuable property removed, the property information may be entered on Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) computer system. This will assist in your property being returned. If you do not have the numbers for your valuables, the likelihood of the property being returned to you is reduced.
  • Working late? Then work safe. If you are working late at night, choose a location that is not secluded. If working in a lab, close and lock the door. Also, let someone know where you are and how long you will be there. Register and use the “Work Safe” program offered by Western Foot Patrol and Western Special Constable Service.
  • Keep your personal information secure. Remember where your identification is at all times. Do not leave it unattended even for a minute. Within seconds, your wallet and personal identification can be stolen. Don't post your schedule online or on your door - if someone needs to find you, they will call.
  • Be extremely cautious of divulging any personal information to strangers.
  • Alcohol consumption can greatly increase your vulnerability. If you decide to drink, designate someone in your group to remain sober to ensure that everyone gets home safely. In fairness, take turns being the designated person. Be aware of your beverages at all times. There may be a risk that someone may tamper with your drink leaving you more vulnerable to a sexual assault.
  • Meeting someone at a local bar does not constitute immediate friendship. Learn to be cautious with new acquaintances. Friendships develop over time. Just because a person appears to be friendly, does not mean they can be trusted. Remember alcohol can greatly impair your judgment. Your designated sober person usually has better judgment, especially under these circumstances.
  • Educate yourself on how to prepare for any circumstance. You can never prepare yourself for every eventuality, but knowledge is a tool that will contribute to safety awareness.
  • Trust your intuition. If a situation or person makes you feel uncomfortable for whatever reason, go with your feelings. Immediately remove yourself from the area or person. Sometimes we dismiss our internal judgment capabilities. Learn to use your internal system to improve your safety.

Community Safety

  • Never prop open residence or building doors . Anyone can slip in.
  • Don’t let people in behind you when entering your residence. You may feel unkind by denying them access, but your diligence will help keep everyone safe.
  • Report suspicious, erratic or unusual behaviour immediately. Even if you are not sure if there is cause for concern, trust your gut and call Western Special Constable Service.
  • Follow campus policies – they are there to help keep you safe.

Safety is a Shared Responsibility

Get involved with your community. This is an excellent opportunity to meet new people. The interaction could benefit you by making you more street/home smart.

Bike Protection

campus bikeProtect your Investment

  • Western Special Constable Service has partnered up with the London Police Service to support this community-based crime prevention strategy called 529 Garage.  Western has purchased a number of tamper-resistant 529 shields that will only be provided for Western Faculty, Staff and Students that register their bike.

  • Visit the London Police Service 529 Garage site to register your bike and enter contact information.  Once you have registered your bike, attend the Western Special Constable Service from Monday to Friday between 7:30am-1:30pm to obtain a free shield sticker that you can place on your bike.
  • Remember to lock up your bicycle! Buy a good calibre U-bolt lock to protect your bicycle. Failure to lock your bike or locking it with an inferior lock is an invitation to bicycle thieves. 
  • For more information, please contact Kim Reynolds, Investigative Staff Sergeant at kreyno24@uwo.ca

Bomb Threat

If you receive a bomb threat, stay calm and try to get as much information as possible. Although this might be difficult, try to note any unique features about the voice and any background sounds you hear over the telephone. Keep the caller on the line as long as possible and take detailed notes about what is said. Photo of campus police entrance

Try to note the following:

  • If the speaker is male or female
  • If the speaker has a distinctive accent
  • If the voice is disguised, muffled or strange-sounding
  • If the voice is shrill or deep
  • Any background noises (e.g. traffic, bus passing, bell ringing, fax or printer sounds)
  • Any indoor vs. outdoor sounds

Call Western Special Constable Service (911 from Campus Phones or 519-661-3300 from cell phone).

If you have been notified of a bomb threat, do not touch any suspicious package. If a suspicious package is found, leave the area and notify the Western Special Constable Service immediately.

If you have been evacuated from a building, avoid standing in front of windows or other potentially hazardous areas. Do not block the sidewalk or street. It will need to be kept clear for emergency officials.

In the case of an explosion, get out of the building as quickly and calmly as possible. If items are falling off bookshelves or from the ceiling, get under a sturdy table or desk until the situation has stabilized enough for your safe passage. Ensure your own safety before trying to help others.

Making a bomb threat is a criminal offence. Do not try to guess whether the threat is real or a hoax. Call Western Special Constable Service.

Computer Protection

Theft of computer equipment is a serious problem that can be reduced, even eliminated, when everyone works together. In addition to the capital loss of equipment, and the related down time until it is replaced, the loss of sensitive and confidential information will have long-term consequences.

Person's hands on laptop keyboard

Information You Should Know

  • Thieves look for opportunity. Physically locking down your equipment to a fixed object in your office or room makes it difficult to steal. Purchase equipment that can be physically secured, or have the capability to be secured. Portable equipment should have a “Kensington” lock receptacle. Western equipment can have physical security features installed. For more information see the WTS Home Page, or call the Help Desk at 519 661-3800.
  • Thefts of opportunity happen in less than 30 seconds. Never leave your room or office without locking the door, regardless if you expect to be gone for only a moment.
  • Empty cartons and old equipment left in the hallway or on the loading dock advertise new equipment on site. Do not leave packaging or equipment out where it is visible. Discard all waste packaging by breaking it down and taking it to a recycling area. Where there may be a large volume of waste, call Facilities Management at 519 661-3304 to remove it.
  • Equipment that can be traced is not attractive to thieves. All equipment should be permanently marked with an identification number that can be traced by investigators. Private property should be marked with a unique number that can be traced to the owner, for example, a driver’s license number. There are many methods of marking property. Contact Western Special Constable Service at 519 661-3300 for further information.
  • If a theft of equipment does occur, detailed information on make, model, and serial number (and any other distinctive markings) is important. This information is added on a central database in Ottawa which all police services in North America have access to. Store this information in a safe and secure location separate from the equipment.
  • Many laptops and handheld devices are stolen from vehicles. If you must leave equipment in an unattended vehicle, lock it out of view in the trunk before you reach your destination.
  • The University does not cover losses of private property. Check your personal insurance coverage to see if your dorm or vehicle is insured.
  • The data on your computer is more valuable than the hardware itself. Personal and confidential information, research, and expensive software are now in the hands of the thieves. Prevent others from accessing the information by password protecting your computer or device. There are a number of options available. See the WTS Security Page or call the ITS Help Desk at 519 661-3800 for more information.
  • So that you can resume your work as soon as possible, make sure that you back up your important data regluarly. Test your backups to make sure they can be recovered and store them in a different secure location, not with your computer.

If you notice any suspicious activity anywhere on campus, contact us at 519 661-3300, or ext. 83300.

Driving on Campus

Man texting and driving

The University campus consists of multiple buildings and numerous streets.  While vehicles on campus are important for purposes of transportation, the campus should be considered a "people place" with thousands of pedestrians using sidewalks and walkways every day.

The speed limit on campus is 40 km per hour unless otherwise notified.  We do have 20 km per hour limits, with associated signage, in higher volume areas. There are stop sign regulated intersections as well as traffic signals and pedestrian crossings.  Always stay alert and obey the traffic signs and regulations of the university.  This will help everyone stay safe.

Don't become a statistic.

Fire or Explosion

Two firefighters using a hose

Fire response procedures are designed to protect the health and safety of facility/building, faculty, staff, students and the public. These procedures are essential in emergency response operations to ensure a timely and suitable response to emergencies and to clearly define lines of authority and communication. All facility occupants share responsibility for the coordinated response and evacuation to fire. All fire alarms are real until proven otherwise.

Fire Procedures and Evacuation procedures have been developed for all University buildings. All personnel should be aware of what immediate actions they should take and how they should evacuate from the specific building and where they should assemble (.pdf).

Each building on campus has a Fire Safety Plan (.pdf).

Indecent Phone Calls

 Woman on phone call Dealing with indecent or harassing telephone calls can be both frightening and confusing. This web page will help you deal with these calls and gather evidence for the police, should their involvement become necessary.

What are Harassing or Obscene Phone Calls

Harassing or indecent phone calls are repeated telephone calls where the caller intends to harass, alarm or annoy the recipient. These types of phone calls are criminal offences.

Helpful Tips

  • DO NOT engage in conversation with the caller.
  • DO NOT let the caller know you are upset with the calls.
  • DO NOT provide personal information on answering machine messages.
  • DO NOT give your name or any personal information to an unknown caller.
  • DO NOT humor the caller, give advice or personal stories.
  • DO NOT discuss the phone calls with others. Often the person making the calls is known to the caller.
  • DO record the caller's voice if you have an answering machine.
  • DOhang up immediately.
  • DO be aware of recurrent hang up calls. Someone may be targeting your home for a break-in and checking the times that you are at home.
  • DO involve the Western Special Constable Service if the calls continue or become more frequent or threatening.

As soon as you suspect a phone call to be indecent or harassing in nature, hang up the phone. Don't engage the caller in conversation.

Lost Wallet

Personal Information is Valuable

The security of your wallet and credit cards is in your hands. You can do several things to ensure their safe keeping. The following tips may help to prevent the loss or theft of your wallet, credit cards and other valuable personal information.

  • Make sure that your credit card is returned to you after each purchase transaction.
  • Be wary of giving your credit card number over the phone.
  • Ensure that duplicate or expired credit cards have been cut in half and thrown out.
  • Destroy the carbons, but keep your receipts for your records. Cross reference them with your monthly bills.
  • In the event of a lost or stolen card, notify your bank immediately . Credit card fraud can occur within minutes of a card being stolen.
  • Be aware of where your cards are at all times
  • Don't leave your wallet, knapsack or purse unattended, regardless of whether you are visiting the library, cafeteria, campus bar or working in an office. Use the lockers provided by the Campus bookstore or other secure location to store valuable items. Keep your wallet with you -- don't put it in your knapsack.
  • Never keep your Personal Identification Number (PIN) for your banking or credit cards in your wallet.
  • Always ensure that the UWO Registrar's Office has your current address.
Man putting away his wallet

Lost/Stolen Identification & Credit/Bank Cards

All pieces of lost or stolen identification should be reported to the police. Even if you believe that you have simply lost your wallet or credit cards report the loss to the Western Special Constable Service Office.

BANK CARDS - Notify your bank branch immediately for a replacement card. Be sure to change your PIN number.

CREDIT CARDS - Notify your credit card company immediately to cancel the card:

If is highly recommended that you add the phone numbers of your card service provider to your phone in the event that your cards are lost or stolen.  This will make it easier to report the incident.


DRIVER'S LICENSE - you can replace a lost, stolen or damaged license at a Service Ontario Centre.  A fee of $35.75 will be collected.  You will need to bring a personal identification document (verifying your name, date of brith and signature).  You will be given a temporary driver's licence and your new driver's licence will arrive in the mail within 4 t0 6 weeks.

BIRTH CERTIFICATE - to get or replace an Ontario birth certificate, visit Service Ontario 

SOCIAL INSURANCE CARD - if your confirmation of SIN letter or SIN card was lost or stolen, Service Canada will not isuse a new SIN.  If you don't remember your SIN, you can find it on your income tax return or you can request a confirmation of your SIN from Service Canada.  For more information on how to get a confirmation of your SIN, see section 3: What you need before you apply.

ONTARIO HEALTH CARD - visit Service Ontario website for instructions to replace your card as it depends on the kind of card you have (red and white Ontario health card or photo health card).

PASSPORT - A Canadian passport is a valuable document that you should keep in a safe and dry place at all time.  Once you report a passport lost or stolen, it is no longer valid.  You cannot use it for travel.  This is to make sure that it isn't used for fraudulent purposes.  Visit Government of Canada website regarding information to report a Canadian Passport no longer in your possession.

WESTERN ONECARD - Visit Student Central in Room 1120, Western Student Services Building.  There is a fee for replacement Western ONECards. 

Please note that if your Western ONECard has a meal plan on it you should report it as lost/stolen to any cashier on campus or to Student Central and it will immediately be deactivated.  You are responsible for all transactions or loss of funds prior to deactivation.  If you find your card after it has been deactivated, you must have it reactivated at Student Central before it will work.

Vist the Western ONECard and Photo Standards website for further details.


Online Safety

laptop Practice safe social networking!  Sites like Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and Facebook are a great way to stay in touch with family and friends; share news and photos and broadcast what you’re up to. 

They're also a great way for cyber criminals to find out information about you. After all, most people provide a lot of personal details like where they work, who they're related to, when they're on holiday, their address and so on without giving it much thought – making it easy for just about anyone to learn what they want to know about you. 


Online Profiles

  • Ensure your internet profile is safe.
  • Stay up to date on Internet Privacy Policies
  • Learn about safe chat rooms and how to protect your information

Fortunately, it's just as easy for you to protect yourself and enjoy the experience by keeping these social networking safety tips in mind:

  • Check out the privacy and security settings of your social network and use them to control who sees what. Most have default settings which likely provide more access than you'd like. You can adjust settings to the highest possible level to protect your information and control who can see personal details (rather than "everyone" or "friends of friends").
  • Read the privacy policy carefully. Sometimes the wording can be confusing and you may allow the site to use your information without realizing it.
  • Never include your phone numbers, email address, home address, work details, your child's school or any other personal information on your profile page.
  • If someone you don't know tries to "friend" you, ignore it. There's no way to be sure they are who they say they are.
  • Before you post pictures, think about whether or not they're appropriate or give away too much information about you. For example, does that shot of the family barbeque show your street name in the background? Can you see your car's licence plate in the photo of you beside it?
  • Avoid geotagging photos. Most smartphones and many digital cameras automatically attach the exact location where a photo was taken – and when you share it online, the geotag can give away your address or let criminals know that you're on vacation, which could make your home a target for break-in. Check the manual of your device to turn off geotagging, and remove geotags from older photos with photo editing software.
  • Remember the more personal information you provide, the easier it is for a hacker to access it and potentially steal your identity (or for other criminals, like stalkers or sexual predators, to learn more about you). It's always a good idea to be discreet.
  • Ignore links that look suspicious, even if they're from friends. Your friend may not be aware of it, which means the link could be part of a phishing scam or contain malicious software.
  • About those suspicious links – don't be fooled by links that say things like, "You have to see this!" Chances are it's a hoax and you'll probably spam your entire friend list.
  • Don't mention things like going away on vacation, big purchases or events that include your address in your status updates. You may also want to delete messages from friends who mention these things to avoid the possibility of someone robbing your home while you're away.
  • Always log out at the end of a session, close your browser and clear your cache.
  • Never include banking information – not even the name of your bank.
  • The only one who should know your username and password is you. Once you give them to someone, they have total control of your account and can say and do things that could impact you.
  • Set up a separate email address just for your social networks, and use unique passwords.


Scams on Social Networks

New scams pop up on social networking sites every day, promising easy money, freedom from a 9 to 5 job, and amazing boosts to your social status. While they look tempting, many of these offers turn out to be schemes to spread viruses and spyware. The best advice? Click with caution.

Here are some of the most popular scams to be aware of:

  • Clickjacking – using catchy headlines like "find out who's looking at your profile" to get you to cut and paste a link into your browser, which then infects your computer and spreads spam to your contact list.
  • Fake polls – links that take you to a page outside of the social network and often ask for your mobile number. These are probably scams. (Check your bill for racked up charges!).
  • Phishing – attempts to get your username and password and may even set up fake pages to get you to sign in.
  • Phony message – often messages from the social network that say "urgent".
  • Money transfer – requests to wire money to someone you may or may not know.
  • Fake friend request – accounts that are set up just to send out spam.
  • Fake page – sometimes set up as a front for clickjacking and phishing, offering prizes for forwarding to friends.
  • Fake apps – often a cover for phishing, malware, clickjacking or money transfer schemes. When you "Allow", spam is spread through your network.
  • Popular scams – contain a link with a fake software update that downloads malware that infects your computer, hijacks your online profile and spams your friends. Lottery scams and "Nigerian 419" are popular examples.

While all of these scams exist, it doesn't mean you have to be nervous about social networking. The most important thing is that you think things through and use your intuition when it comes to anything suspicious.

Safe Campus

Western has taken a multi-disciplined, coordinated, and unique “Safe Campus Community” approach for the protection of personal safety and property security.

Safe Campus

Severe Weather

During times of unsettled or severe weather, Western Special Constable Service receives regular bulletins from Environment Canada. From our Communications Centre we monitor ‘weather radio’ and the Exeter weather radar.

In monitoring severe weather the following terminology may be a useful guide.

  1. ADVISORY - Actual or expected weather conditions may cause inconvenience or concern but do not pose a serious threat.
  2. WATCH - Conditions are favourable for the development of severe weather.
  3. WARNING – Severe weather is occurring or is highly probable.  Weather warnings may be issued from six to twelve hours in advance.  Severe thunderstorm or tornado warnings are sometimes issued as little as one hour or less in advance.  Weather warnings may be issued for thunderstorms, tornados, freezing rain, frost, wind, dust-storm, blizzards, heavy snowfall, winter storms, wind chill.

Sexual Violence

Sexual Violence

Western has procedures in place to respond to sexual violence, to support members of our campus community, regardless of where an incident of sexual violence has occurred.

Survivor Support

Shelter in Place

Arrow pointing up with wheelchair symbol beside it

Western has a Shelter in Place Policy  to ensure the safety and welfare of all faculty, staff, students and visitors. The policy is to ensure the safety of occupants in a building who have a physical disability that may limit their ability to evacuate by means of stairwells when elevators are not available.

The Shelter in Place policy applies to:

  • Persons with physical disabilities limiting their ability to leave
  • Person whose leaving will slow down the egress path, putting themselves and others in harm’s way
  • If there is surgery in progress and the person is under sedation and cannot leave. The surgeon will stay with the occupant.
  • A person who is on crutches and cannot use the stairs without putting themselves in more danger
  • Smoke and/or fire are blocking the egress path

Suspicious Packages

PackagesThere has been an increasing amount of concern about the use of the mail to deliver potentially dangerous substances. Government and law enforcement officials have urged the public to use common sense in assessing the suspicious nature of packages. Keep in mind that the targeting of UWO locations for this type of threat is extremely remote.

What may be a Suspicious Letter or Parcel?

A combination of the following may constitute a suspicious mail item:
  • Suspicious items may have protruding wires, aluminum foil, oil, or grease stains on the wrapping and can emit a peculiar odour.
  • Letters may feel rigid or appear uneven or lopsided
  • Parcels may have an irregular shape with soft spots or bulges.
  • Parcels may have a buzzing or ticking noise or a sloshing sound.
  • Parcels or letters may have a powdery substance observed on the exterior of item.
  • Cancellation or postmark may indicate a different location than the return address or that the item was mailed from a foreign country.
  • Excessive amounts of postage using low denominations.
  • Excessive binding, taping and tying material
  • No return address or the return address may be fictitious, from a foreign country and/or even indecipherable.
  • Suspicious items may display distorted handwriting or the name and address may be prepared with home-made labels or cut-and-paste lettering.
  • Unprofessionally wrapped with several combinations of tape used to secure the package and may have special endorsements: "Fragile - Handle with Care", "Rush - Do Not Delay" or "Special Delivery".
  • Suspicious items may be addressed to specific individuals and could bear restricted endorsements such as "PERSONAL", "PRIVATE", "TO BE OPENED ONLY BY", etc.
  • Addressee's name/title may be inaccurate.

What should I do if I've received a suspicious parcel in the mail?

  • Remain calm. Notify your supervisor.
  • Do not try to open the parcel, as they are usually designed to withstand handling while in the mail, and to activate when opened or when an item is removed.
  • Avoid sniffing the package or tasting any substance associated with it.
  • Isolate the parcel/letter and leave the area. Close the door.
  • Secure the area to prevent others from entering.
  • Wash hands immediately with soap and water to prevent the spread of contamination.
  • Evacuate the immediate area.
  • Call Western Special Constable Service at 519-661-3300 or 9-1-1 and report that you've received a parcel in the mail that is suspicious.

If smoke, visible fumes, or strange odours are emitting from the package, or if people are exhibiting signs of illness, including difficulty breathing, or fumes are strong, ACTIVATE THE FIRE ALARM, EVACUATE THE BUILDING AND CALL WESTERN SPECIAL CONSTABLE SERVICE AT 911.

Theft Protection

Bag and laptop Thousands of dollars worth of thefts from the university community are reported annually to Western Special Constable Service. Most of these losses are not recoverable through insurance. Can we afford these losses? Our Western Special Constable Service strives to keep our community safe and secure but cannot succeed without your help.

Physical Environment

First, consider your environment in general. Your building will be accessible to many individuals after hours. Is your work area in an isolated part of the building or close to an exit? Next, examine three important factors in the security of your area: windows, doors and locks.

Windows and Doors

  • Always keep your windows locked
  • Easily accessible windows create an additional security risk. Use window coverings to conceal the contents of your office. If possible, move valuable equipment to a less visible location.
  • Consider enhancing your window security by installing additional physical protection such as glass security film or plexiglass.
  • Always lock your door when you are absent, even if only for a few minutes.
  • Do not prop open doors to anyone's area or building. Secure those you find open.
  • If your area contains expensive equipment or valuable information, consider the strength of your door against being forced open. Additional door and window security hardware reduces the risk of forced entry.


  • Deadbolt locks offer the best protection.
  • Keep a record of your key distribution.
  • Keep possession of your keys - do not loan them.
  • Minimize duplication of all keys and only duplicate keys through the Physical Plant Keys Office.
  • Report all lost or stolen keys immediately.
  • If you move to a new area, have a change in staff or lose some keys, consider having the area rekeyed for your own security.
  • The issuing department is responsible for collecting outstanding keys from staff, faculty, and students.

All modifications to your area should be approved through Facilities Management to ensure your own safety and to confirm adherence to building codes. Please report broken or non-fastening locks, doors, or windows, to Facilities Management.

General Security Measures - Reduce Your Vulnerability

  • Have a safety & security plan for your area and awareness training
  • Lock your office when unattended
  • Do not leave your laptop or devices unattended
  • Do not prop doors open
  • Maintain an accurate inventory of all valuable equipment including make, model and serial number
  • Use authorized cable tie downs for computer equipment
  • Keep your computer access confidential and regularly change your password
  • Be aware of suspicious or unauthorized persons in your area
  • Speak to suspicious persons - "Can I help you?"
  • Report any suspicious persons. Call in a description to Western Special Constable Service at 911 if an emergency or at 519 661-3300 for advice
  • Conduct a routine security sweep prior to lock-up
  • Utilize an intrusion alarm system for vulnerable areas/valuable equipment
  • Always back up files

Mark your Property

We highly recommend marking all valuable items in your area. Marking an item makes it less attractive for thieves (because it can be traced and is difficult to sell) and enables law enforcement to identify it as stolen and return it to you if recovered.


If you consider your area to be sensitive or at a high risk of theft or break-ins, contact Western Special Constable Service to discuss the wide range of options for monitoring such areas. Security system must be consistent with other University security systems.

Alarm system can be very expensive and should only be considered if your area contains valuable equipment and is at significant risk.