Experts warn of increased number of burglaries in Switzerland during winter

Experts warn of increased number of burglaries in Switzerland during winter

When the weather gets colder and the nights grow longer, the number of burglaries recorded in Switzerland rises, experts from insurance firm Mobilière have warned. It adds to a study released by the Federal Statistical Office in the summer, which revealed that the rate of burglaries in Switzerland rose dramatically last year, with some Swiss cantons more affected than others.

Number of burglaries in Switzerland rose 14 percent in 2022

According to data given to Blick, winter is the peak season for burglars in Switzerland. Not only are the nights longer and darker, prising the window of opportunity wider, but many residents go on holiday between Christmas and the new year, making it the ideal time to make an unwanted visit.

What’s more, the Federal Statistical Office (FSO) registered a 14 percent increase in the number of burglaries recorded by the police in 2022 compared to 2021. Authorities explained that the relaxation of the COVID laws allowed burglars to ply their illegal trade more often, as people were home less than they were during the restrictions.

In 2022, 35.732 burglaries were recorded in Switzerland, with Canton Zurich most affected by far with 6.935 cases. Vaud took second with 3.334, followed by Aargau 3.145, Bern (3.126) and St. Gallen (1.729). On the flip side, only 20 burglaries were recorded in Appenzell Innerrhoden, 69 were recorded in Uri and 78 were reported in Nidwalden.

Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays the preferred times for burglars

A recent study by Mobilière also revealed that burglaries in Switzerland are more common on certain days of the week. The insurance firm found that incidents are most likely to occur on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and that on average, thieves make off with 4.200 francs worth of goods.

Advice on how to protect against burglaries in Switzerland

Responding to Blick, a statement by Swiss police made the following recommendations to those worried about burglaries:

  • Be sure to lock everything before going to bed or going away - closing blinds will not stop burglars from entering via a window.
  • Set up a temporary light source when you are away that goes on and off at intervals during the day.
  • Be careful with what you share on the internet - wrongdoers may be able to see you are not home through what you post.
  • Consider joining a neighbourhood watch programme if possible.
  • Install an alarm system.
  • Ask your neighbours to collect your post while you are away to avoid it being taken by thieves.

The police also offer a guide (in German and French) for those who want advice on how to protect their home from burglars. For more information about the study, check out the FSO website.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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