YONKERS, N.Y. -- Yonkers police are offering some commonsense advice they hope will help keep shoppers safe during the holiday season.
A few tips to follow:
- If shopping online, arrange to have packages delivered when you are home, at your neighbors' when they are home, or at your workplace.
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Criminals like to target people who are distracted.
- Travel on populated, well-lit streets. If possible, travel with a friend.
- When driving, keep your doors locked and windows closed. Make sure the gas tank is full. Maintain your car in good working order to avoid breakdowns.
- Park in a well-lit areas.
- Always lock your car. Before getting into your car, peek in the back seat to make sure no Grinch is hiding there.
- Avoid leaving unattended valuables or packages in your car. When possible, hide items in the trunk.
- Carry your purse, portfolio or briefcase close to your body, tucked in the bend of your elbow like a football. Never wrap the strap of your purse around your body because you could be hurt if someone tries to snatch it. When dining, keep your purse in your lap. Hanging it off the back of a chair or leaving it on the floor makes it an easy target.
- If you are carrying a wallet, carry it in your front pants pocket. The rear pants pocket is the easiest to pick.
- Don’t wait until you have reached your front door to look for your keys. Have them ready in your hand. If a stranger is standing near your door, it may be a good idea not to go in until the situation feels safer.
- Lock your front door immediately upon entering your home.
- If you live in an apartment building, don’t buzz in someone who rings your bell until you have verified who they are. This will help protect both you and your neighbors.
- Remind children to be wary of strangers, including those on the internet.
- Be wary of con artists. Some divert your attention while another picks your pocket. Some pose as a utility worker or trades person to get inside your home. Also watch out for telephone and email solicitors asking for personal information about your accounts, passwords or social security number.
- Avoid illegal street vendors. Only buy stuff from licensed vendors or reputable stores.
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