Holiday Crime Prevention Tips
The rush and good will that surround the
holidays can increase the opportunities for
criminal activity. The SA Police Service
suggests these simple tips to assist you in
having a safe and happy holiday season.
- When Shopping:
- Be ALERT and AWARE of your surroundings.
Pay attention to who is around you and what
activities are happening.
- Park in a well-lit area.
- Remember to lock your vehicle! Keep
vehicle doors and windows locked while you
are in it and especially when you are not!
Use anti-theft steering wheel clubs or locks
as well. A thief is looking for easy targets
and anything you can do to deter them from
choosing your car, the better.
- Minimize the number of valuables left in
your vehicle and keep valuables, electronics
(including cell phones and DVDs), gifts and
other “theft attractors” out of sight.
- Protect your purse or wallet and clean
out any unnecessary items before leaving
home. Don’t carry large amounts of cash or
extra credit cards. Carry only those cards
that you will need to use that day. Keep a
master list of all cards so if your wallet
is stolen, they can be reported promptly to
the appropriate banking facility.
- Never leave your purse, wallet or cell
phone unattended in a public place.
- Don’t overburden yourself with packages
- Shop with a buddy – there is safety in
- Role-play with children about what
should happen in the event you are
- Have your keys out and ready when you
return to your vehicle.
- Do not leave your car unattended with
the motor running or with the keys in the
ignition – even for the very short time
needed to do a quick errand or pay for fuel.
- Only make online purchases from trusted,
secure websites. Look for “https” in the web
address to verify security.
- Ensure that dark areas and
entrances have outdoor lights that are
turned on after dark or that are activated
- Place gifts where they can’t be seen
from the outside.
- Avoid opening the door to strangers.
Legitimate delivery people will be able to
- If traveling, use timers for lights and
radios while you’re away. Ask a trusted
friend, neighbour or Neighbourhood Watch
member to watch your home. Remember to make
arrangements for mail and newspapers.
- Recognize that the holidays can cause
stress – keep emotions under control while
driving. Give other drivers plenty of space
and always leave yourself a route to avoid
- If you attend parties where alcohol is
served, remember to use a designated driver.
- Minimize distractions such as talking on
a cell phone.
- Take frequent breaks to avoid fatigue,
especially when driving long distances. If
you get tired, stop and rest until you’re
able to drive with full attention.
- Buckle up! That means passengers and
- Be patient! Give yourself extra time for
travel, especially in rain. Even in dry
conditions, traffic during the holidays is
heavier than normal, and it will take longer
than you expect to get around.
After the holidays:
- Pay close attention to bills and report
any unauthorized charges.
- Photograph and record the serial numbers
of new items and add them to your inventory.
Remember that your safety starts with you.
Be alert and prepared.