Black Friday is here! The Christmas season is often busy and hectic, leaving you distracted and vulnerable to criminals. By taking a few precautions, you can often prevent becoming the victim of a crime.

In The Parking Lot or Garage

When shopping after dark, try to park as close to your destination as possible, choosing a well-lit parking spot. 

Be observant of your surroundings, avoiding lurking strangers. If necessary, return to the store and ask for someone to escort you to your car.  Do not talk on your cell phone when alone in a parking lot or garage. Distractions can leave you vulnerable to thieves who may be lurking.

Keep a secure hold on your packages and other belongings.

When returning to your car, get your keys out before leaving the building.

In Your Vehicle

Never leave valuables or packages where they can be seen. Stow anything of value out of site in the truck.

Make frequent trips to your car to store bags if needed. Attempting to balance several packages can be distracting.

Make sure your vehicle is operating properly with plenty of gas, a full battery, etc.

While Shopping

For females, do not carry a purse. Instead, store your ID, credit cards, etc. securely in a pocket. If you must carry a purse or other bag, keep it zipped or snapped closed.

If you must carry your purse, keep it securely on your shoulder or secure it in the shopping cart with the child safety restraints, making it harder to snatch.

Notify your bank or credit card company immediately if your cards are lost, stolen or otherwise compromised.

Carry a minimum amount of cash and credit cards with you.

Shop with a friend whenever possible.