Personal Security for the Home an Office
When is the last time that you sat down and talked to your family about personal security? Make it a little more difficult to become a victim at home or at work by taking a few simple precautions. Take a look at your car, your home, and your office and think like a criminal.
Always be alert and aware of the people that are around you. Avoid dark parking lots, alleys, and deserted areas when every possible.
If you must walk on the street at night, travel with a friend or family member. Walk in well-lighted areas or walk with a flashlight. Walk confidently and at a steady pace. Don’t get distracted by your telephone. If you pass someone, make eye contact, do not engage in conversation, and keep valuables out of site or tucked securely between your body and your arm.
Always lock your car doors. Park in well-lighted areas. Have your car keys in your hand when you exit a building. Do not leave purses and valuables in plain view. Lock them in the trunk. Don’t be fumbling for your keys at the last minute. Before you get in your car, check your back seat. If you sense that someone may be following you, drive to a public location (i.e. police department, convenience store). If your car breaks down, open the hood of your car then stay in your car. If someone approaches, roll your window down slightly and ask them to call for service or a tow. Do not get out of your car. If you pass a motorist stopped on the side of the road, call for assistance but do not stop to help.
Walk around your house and look in the windows. What do you see? Are you projecting a clear view of your valuables? Close your shades at night or when you are not at home. If you have an office on the first floor of your home, what information have you left out on your desk that projects a picture of who you are and where you may be vulnerable? Be careful what information you post on social media including information about major purchases, when you are home, where you live, and how to contact you. If you have repairman coming to your house, ask for credentials, verify the individuals are who they say they claim to be. Evaluate who may have keys to your house or apartment. If you didn’t change the locks when you moved in – call a locksmith a have your locks rekeyed. Do not leave spare keys under the doormat, under the flowerpot, or in a similar spot.
Don’t leave your purse, cell phone, billfold, keys, or other items in plain view. Place them in a drawer. If you work alone or after hours, keep your door locked. If you work late hours, ask the security guard to walk you out at night. When you enter the elevator, stand near the control panel. If you feel threatened or are attacked, it will be easier to trigger the alarm. If you are attacked, hit the alarm and as many other buttons as you can. When you are in a crowed elevator, be aware. Pickpockets sometimes target people in the elevator. Don’t be afraid to report suspicious people to an office manage, security guard, or supervisor. If you meet a stranger walking in the hallway, confront them, ask them who they are, where are they going? Always be aware of emergency exits, telephone numbers for security, contact information for local law enforcement, and keep important numbers posted.
When a crime occurs – report it
We all have the responsibility to report a crime when we witness a crime. Don’t allow your actions to become too predictable. Criminal target areas of high predictability of operations. As many as 50% of all crimes go unreported. Don’t be afraid to get involved. Law enforcement cannot assist if they are not made aware. Failing to report a crime increases the likelihood it will happen again.