Special Presentation Speaker: Terrie Johnston, Crime Prevention Officer, SPD. Residential block watches, security reviews and neighborhood meetings have attracted a lot of attention. In her personal safety talks she has said: Keep your cell phones charged, in parking lots keep your keys handy, park in lighted areas and ask for assistance from security personnel if you have extra packages. At home, pick up papers and mail, don’t leave packages or catalogues outside, leave lights on and a radio playing when gone. Do not have decorations on the door that block your view through the peep-hole. Be sure you can see your car and house. Answer the door with out opening it. Talk through the door. On Face Book don’t tell the world you are going shopping and the hours you will be gone.
Watch for mail theft and UPS and other deliveries. Some people are following the trucks and wait, if no one answers the door, they take the packages. Have your computer and other electronics hidden from view from outside. Use your blinds and curtains. Cut up the cartons that the new TV set came in, don’t advertise what Santa brought. Parties, watch to see who arrives and that you know them, also have your valuables secured and medicines locked up. Coin collections, money, I Pads, check books, other valuables should be secured. After the party be sure all the windows are locked.
Street safety; put your wallet away at the counter, not as you are distracted by something or someone, have your cell phone handy, don’t text and not pay attention, wear low heeled shoes, not high heels. Travel light, no large handbags that hold more that you need where you can’t find your keys.
Using on-line shopping, look for the padlock icon and be aware of I.D. theft. (see www.ftc.gov)
If separated at the mall have a pre-planned meeting place. Know your friend’s full name, not nick name. Be aware of the people around you. Is the same person in the same shops you are and not buying anything? Use your remote to locate your car in a big lot.
This past year has been the highest in requests for security information in 23 years. Pay attention to barking dogs, lawn furniture close to the house, rocks and concrete blocks that are handy for breaking through doors and windows. Stay alert and be safe.