Operation Red Cell

Actual break-in evidence photo from the Queensland Police, Australia. The criminals used the owner's ladder to enter the upstairs.
Actual break-in evidence photo from the Queensland Police, Australia. The criminals used the owner’s ladder to enter the upstairs.

For those who don’t know, the original Red Cell was a project started by Richard Marcinko, founder of Seal Team Six. Basically, the Red Cell’s job was to attack US bases and test their preparation for terrorist attack. He found them wanting, and was court martialed for his efforts.

What I want us to do today is to use this concept against our own homes and businesses. Look at them through the eyes of a criminal. Where can I break in? Where am I vulnerable? Where can I improve?

Of course, we have to be brutally honest with ourselves if we are going to get benefit from this. After all, we would love to think everything is just fine. But the truth is there is room for improvement in everything.

Next, take a look at the situation record what you find. Be thorough. Photographs or sketches can be a great tool, as it will help you see if the changes you’ve made are sufficient.

Then, sit down and assess what you find. Here, you will need to make a judgment call on what level of security you are willing to accept.

Look for places where an intruder can hide from sight. Light them.

Look for doors or windows that can be easily defeated. Fix or replace them.

Finally, commit to a plan and make changes. You don’t have to do them all at once, just prioritize them and make the changes with the biggest return first. If money is no issue, maybe you do them all at once.

I recently did this, and I found some areas that I could improve. One thing to consider is whether you have things lying around that can be used to break in. I found I was just leaning my 24 foot ladder against the fence, where it could be used to access the upstairs. Now, it’s mounted on the fence, and secured by a steel cable bicycle lock.

Now, I have a plan, and I’ve made headway. I’m not done. Heck, I will never be done. But my home is better off today that when I started.

2 thoughts on “Operation Red Cell

  1. James Rosich

    I have been thinking about transforming a bathroom into a safe room. I would appreciate any suggestions. I hear some 3/4 inch plywood is bullet resistant. The bathroom already has a very solid iron tub and several inches of concrete in the walls and located in the center of my house.


    1. I wouldn’t rely on plywood as a bullet barrier unless you specifically buy some that is made that way. It’s out there.

      Safe rooms are another post altogether but here’s a primer. It needs to be set up as a haven, a place of last refuge. You need a steel core door as a minimum plus things like a spare phone. If that’s where you are prepared to go then it would he as good as anywhere.


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