Britons are resorting to Home Alone-style booby traps to keep Christmas burglars at bay, according to a survey today.

With 13 million households empty over the holidays, more than half of families quizzed by researchers said they will consider "improvised" security measures.

Residents said they could leave radios on full volume, icing their driveways, and even position cardboard cut outs near windows instead of installing alarms.

A total of 53% of Britons were said to be considering radical tactics used by Kevin McCallister, played by child star Macaulay Culkin in the 1990 blockbuster film.

Up to 6% said they would consider scattering sharp objects on the floor next to the front door while 5% said they would think about setting up trip wires and ropes.

Responding to the OnePoll survey of 2,000 adults this month, Matt Pernet, from the insurance provider More Than, said: "If you want to minimise the likelihood of a break-in while you're away over the festive season then stick to the basics: strong locks, removing any obvious signs that nobody is home and, of course, installing a highly visible, functional burglar alarm.

"It might seem costly at first, but in the long run it will be priceless."