Following these crime prevention measures will help reduce your risk of becoming a victim of crime.
- Park in a well-lit and well-traveled area, lock your doors, and remember where you parked.
- Do not leave packages or any other valuables visible from the outside of your vehicle.
- Lock valuables in your trunk or if possible take them directly home.
- Never leave your vehicle unattended with children inside or while it is running.
- Deter pickpockets by carrying your purse close to your body or your wallet inside of a coat or front trouser pocket. Never leave your purse unattended or outside of your view.
- Carry only the credit cards that you need and avoid carrying large amounts of cash.
- Remain vigilant to your surroundings especially when leaving or approaching your vehicle.
- If you are shopping with children, make a plan in the event you become separated.
- Keep your personal information private and your password secure. Do not reply to requests to verify your credit card information or password.
- Beware of "bargains" from companies with that you are unfamiliar. If it sounds "too good to be true’" then it probably is "too good to be true."
- Shop with companies that you know and trust. If you are considering buying from companies that you do not know do background research to try to determine their legitimacy.
- Use secure websites for purchases. Look for the icon of a locked padlock at the bottom of the screen or "https" in the URL address.
- Keep a record of your credit card numbers in a safe location. Report lost or stolen credit cards immediately to the bank or card issuer.
- When leaving your home make sure to lock all of your windows and doors (garage too).
- Avoid placing large or expensive items in view from windows and doors.
- If you are traveling for an extended period of time over the holidays, have a friend or neighbor watch your home. Also, have them collect all mail and newspapers.
- Use timers to illuminate your home or television so that it appears the home is occupied.
- Be aware of scams where criminals are taking advantage of your generosity during this season. (Check out www.charitynavigator.org as a database to confirm the legitimacy of charitable organizations.)
For other great tips visit the National Crime Prevention Council at www.ncpc.org.
SOURCE: Batavia Police Department