Crime Prevention is everybody’s job! There are many ways that crime around neighborhoods and businesses can be prevented; however, it takes the proper methods of Crime Prevention to ensure that the likelihood of crime is substantially lowered.
Crime Prevention is the anticipation, recognition, and the initiation of action to remove or reduce crime. Prevention may take place at any given time and any given location, due to the fact that crime is not centralized in one area. Public awareness is one of the most important strategies out there for reducing crime. The more aware the people are around you, the more ‘eyes’ you have looking out for your well being. A Neighborhood Watch program can be developed, or a Business Watch program can be implemented by neighboring businesses.
The fact of the matter is that Crime Prevention works. It is cheaper, it is safer, and better for the communities to prevent crime than to have to treat their victims, deal with the perpetrators, and loose productivity.
Types of crimes that you can prevent:
- Auto Theft
- Theft From Motor Vehicle
- Identity Theft
Burglary: For a residential living environment, there are many ways to prevent burglaries.
- Purchase an alarm system, or even just buy the alarm system signs. These are major deterrents for burglars.
- Lock It Up! Double locking doors and windows are some of the easiest ways to deter perpetrators from breaking in.
- Having thorny bushes under windows will help keep away burglars from finding ways inside.
- Leave lights and radios on when you leave the house. This makes it seem as if somebody is home.
- Don’t advertise that you are going out of town. This information may land in the wrong hands. (i.e. don’t put that information on Facebook, updates, pictures, ect…)
- Use motion sensing lights around your house, especially in extra dark areas.
- Get a dog! The smaller dogs that like to bark a lot when they see people are a stronger deterrent.
Auto Theft: Vehicles are also a big target when it comes to theft. Protect your car as best as you can!
- Lock your car! The most simple and effective way of preventing Auto Theft can be as easy as pressing the lock button
- Park your car in a well lit area when you are away from your living residence. Doing this will reduce the risk of auto theft, because it is not in a place where the thief can hide from people or cameras.
- Install a car alarm (if there is not already one). This will heighten the risk of getting caught, if someone were to break into your vehicle.
- Be aware of your surroundings.
- Report anything suspicious and avoid suspicious looking people.
- Close your car windows completely.
- Take your keys out of the car.
- Never leave your car running unattended – not even for a minute.
- Remove all valuable items from the car or hide them from view.
- Install a tracking system that alerts police when the vehicle is reported stolen.
Theft from Motor Vehicle: Theft from motor vehicles is also very common. Perpetrators look to see what can be found in cars.
- Do not leave any valuables in your car! Cars are only safe to some extent, but it is best to just remove all valuable items from your vehicle.
- Lock your doors! Doing this will lessen the risk of theft from a motor vehicle.
- Park in well lit areas.
Vandalism: Vandalism can occur anywhere at any time. When property of yours or somebody’s that you know has been vandalized, there are multiple ways to handle the situation. Vandalism can be such things as Graffiti, and destruction of property such as vehicles and homes
- Keep important data handy, and ready (Pictures, location, approximate time of incident, details of what has happened)
- Call the police
- Contact your insurance company immediately to inform them of the events
- Document everything that happened
- Always remain calm
Identity Theft: Identity Theft is one of the biggest crimes in America. Criminals can do harm to you and your family without you even knowing. There are many things that you can do that can help protect your family and your personal identity.
- Do not give out personal information through the mail, over a phone call or over the internet, unless you know the people or agency that you are dealing with.
- Shred all of your personal documents including credit applications, insurance forms, blank checks, or other personal financial information that you would not want to fall into the wrong hands.
- Protect your computer. Everyday people buy things over the internet using credit cards. Using firewalls and anti-virus software will be very beneficial in preventing a breach of security.
- Create passwords that are very difficult to guess. Passwords with upper and lower case letters and numbers are the best.
- Carry as few credit cards you can. Take only what you really need.
- Be aware when using ATM’s. Someone can look over your shoulder and get your PIN numbers.
- Make a list of all your credit card numbers and bank account numbers and keep in a place where only YOU know where it is.