Happy Black Friday, everyone! While out shopping today, keep up your awareness all day. Don’t think for one minute, that letting your guard down is an okay thing to do. Criminals are out there and looking for cues to strike at anytime. Also to make matters worse, there are also businesses that are less than honest. Here is a list of common crimes that you do not want to become apart of while out there trying to enjoy your great shopping day, today, or any other shopping day.

  • Don’t bring out a sizeable amount of cash. Nothing is worse than exposing a wad of cash out in public! It is safer to pay by credit card, gift card or debit card.
  • At all times, keep your eye on your wallet, purse and other items like your phone, keys and other valuables.
  • If your are bumped into or someone makes you bend down or get in any awkward position, you may be a live target for pick-pocketing. If this happens, note location of all your valuables immediately.
  • Do not keep a large sum of money or other valuables in your car while unattended in case of a break in while shopping.
  • Don’t let your guard down for flim-flam techniques. Confidence is one of the oldest tricks up any criminal’s sleeve. These persons often work in teams, one dropping bait, and another claiming they found it at the same time that you see this newly “found” money. Anyone who comes up to you with the promise to match an amount of money that you all of a sudden find, and setting up a fund whereby you are going to an ATM, your bank or other–in order to match a found amount as a “trust” is getting you involved with a con job! Don’t be taken by this really old trick. Once you give these persons your money, you will probable never see anyone again, and they dispatch very soon after the take. Remember NEVER go to an ATM with someone you have never met, for any reason! It is always too good to be true, and it is better to be safe than sorry!!
  • Always do business with a store you are already familiar with so your guard is not down by looking “lost”. Criminals pick up very easy on that cue.
  • Also do business with stores you are familiar with, because even though it is a minority, sometimes there are actually business trying to over-capitalize on you–trying to steer you into getting needless upgrades, extra amounts of product, or sell you low quality goods. You are better off doing business with a store you are already familiar shopping in on such a busy day as Black Friday. Businesses should NOT change their store rules and policies including couponing for just one shopping day. Any businesses doing such tactics should be reported to the authorities for gouging, as this often happens most on a busy shopping day like today because your guard is down trying to hit as many sotres as possible and the lines often distract as well.
  • Especially always keep your eye out when breaking, eating, going into restaurants, etc. Never leave your bags unattended, and if bags are found unattended for an extended amount of time, call police. It could be a con-job with merchandise instead of cash, or who knows. Let the police deal with it.
  • If you are robbed, don’t try to apprehend criminals yourself. ALWAYS call police! You can get yourself in more trouble than it is worth. Try to keep in public as much as possible. The less people there are around, the more you are a target. When trouble lurks, cameras help but often too late to really do anything about it. Keep exposure to your valuables to a minimum. Do your shopping in this order: do your least valuable shopping first then do your MOST valuable shopping later–then leave the scene. Don’t do very expensive shopping and go walking around with more valuable items all day long, because the valuable merchandise is exposed a longer amount of time. Try to shop close to home and drop off valuable merchandise and venture back out, but make sure that you are not tailgated home either. You certainly don’t want to have a stray burglar find your home as a target.

Don’t forget to have some fun!! But make sure the day is a safe one. Happy Black Friday and have some great shopping!

two women holding paper bags



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