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How to Stay Out of the Police Blotter This Holiday Season

Following these crime prevention measures will help reduce your risk of becoming a victim of crime.

Police are too polite to say this outright, so I'll say it for them: A lot of those blotter reports we read during the holiday season could be avoided with a little common sense.

Following these crime prevention measures will help reduce your risk of becoming a victim of crime.

Shopping


  • 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. 

Internet Shopping


  • 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.

At Home


  • 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

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