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Crime Prevention Tips

Identity Theft

  • Don't ever give your Social Security number out over the Internet, telephone or to anyone that cannot provide you with proper credentials.
  • Make sure that anything that you are going to throw away that contains your identifiers or account numbers are shredded thoroughly before placing in the trash.
  • Never keep your PIN numbers to your ATM, credit cards, or debit cards in your purse or billfold.
  • Make sure that no one is watching over your shoulder when using an ATM machine.
  • Do not respond to the ever changing scams by mail and Internet, telling you that you have won something. Usually stating that they will send you a check for a large amount of money and you are to send them so much of it back. However, one of the most current scam comes in e-mail form, telling you that they are a friend or a family member and have been arrested and need you to send money to bond them out.
  • Remember if you didn't enter to win something then how could you have won what they are telling you that you have won.

Crimes of Sexual Nature:

  • If you are at a party or other group function, don't leave with a person that you don't know well.
  • Always remember that alcohol and drugs compromise your ability to make decisions. They lower your inhibitions and make you a more likely candidate for becoming a victim.
  • Don't accept drinks from other people, except someone you trust.
  • Open containers yourself.
  • Never leave your drink unattended. Take it with you or get a different one when you return.
  • Don't share drinks.
  • If you feel sick or dizzy while out socially, go to someone you trust or call someone to come pick you up. Never leave alone or with someone you do not trust with your life.
  • If you are a female, avoid gatherings where men greatly outnumber women.
  • Avoid secluded places where you put yourself into a vulnerable situation.
  • Avoid walking alone at night.
  • Travel with a friend or in a group.
  • Be alert and aware of your surroundings.
  • If you must walk alone, stay in well-lighted areas, away from alleys, bushes and entryways.
  • Walk confidently, directly, and at a steady pace.
  • Keep your hands free. Avoid overloading yourself with packages and books.
  • Always let someone know where you are and where you may be going.
  • When at home:
  • Install effective locks on all doors and windows and be sure to use them.
  • When moving into a new home or apartment, make sure the locks are replaced or re-keyed.
  • If you live in an apartment, avoid being in the laundry room or garage by yourself, especially at night.
  • If you live alone, use only your last name and first initial on your mail box and in telephone directories.
  • Don't let strangers into your home, no matter what the reason or emergency. Offer to make an emergency phone call while they wait outside.
  • If you come home and find a door or window open or signs of forced entry, DO NOT GO IN!
  • Keep entrances or yard lights well lit. It allows passersby, neighbors, patrol to see anyone hanging around your doors or windows better.
  • Always have your door key ready so you can enter your home without delay.
  • When friends or family drop you off at home or work, have them wait until you are safely inside before leaving and do the same for your friends and family.
  • When in your vehicle:
  • Keep your car in good working order and the gas tank at least half full.
  • Park in well-lighted areas.
  • Have your car keys in your hand and check the back seat area before entering your car. Notice under the car as you walk up to it.
  • If you think you are being followed, drive to a public place or to a police or sheriff department.
  • Lock your car door immediately after entering the car.
  • If your car breaks down, turn on your flashers, open the hood, and wait inside the car with your doors locked. If someone stops, stay in your car, roll down your window slightly and ask them to call the police, a garage, or a tow service for you.

Burglary Prevention:

  • Make your home look occupied.
  • Lock all outside doors and windows before you leave the house or go to bed. Even if it is for a short time, lock your doors.
  • Leave lights on when you go out. If you are going to be away for a length of time, connect some lamps to automatic timers to turn them on in the evening and off during the day.
  • Don't allow daily deliveries of mail, newspapers or flyers to build up while you are away. Arrange with the Post Office to hold your mail, or arrange for a friend or neighbor to take them regularly.
  • Check your locks on doors and windows and replace them with secure devices as necessary. Put deadbolts on all exterior doors.
  • Sliding glass doors are vulnerable. Special locks are available for better security.
  • Always lock your garden sheds and garages.
  • Use curtains on garage and basement windows.
  • Have adequate exterior lighting. A motion-sensitive light is recommended for backyards.
  • Trim trees and shrubs so that they cannot be used as hiding places for intruders.
  • Never leave keys under doormats, flowerpots, mailboxes or other "secret" hiding places.
  • Keep a detailed inventory of your valuable possessions, including a description of the items or photo, date of purchase, original value, and serial numbers.

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Additional Information

National Crime Prevention Tips