Holiday Shopping: How to Prevent Becoming a Victim While Shopping

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AlertID Provides Tips on Holiday Shopping Safety

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By keeping these safety tips in mind, families can help ensure not only a fun shopping experience but also a safe one.

While we are thinking about “Making Merry” this holiday season, criminals are watching for easy opportunities. Don’t let your holidays be spoiled by criminals; simply, be prepared. Whether you will be hitting the stores on Black Friday or doing your Christmas shopping online Cyber Monday, AlertID, the nationwide safety network, offers its free app and safety tips to help ensure that your Holiday season is “Merry and Bright”.

Shopping in Stores:

  •     Be informed about your surroundings. Download the free AlertID® mobile app to receive alerts about crimes, sex offenders or severe weather near you or your shopping venue.
  •     Shop during daylight hours when possible and shop with a friend – safety in numbers.
  •     Look for a well-lit area to park if shopping at night.
  •     Carry your purse close to your body or your wallet inside a coat or front pants pocket and try to carry only the amount of cash you will need to make your purchases.
  •     Have your keys in hand when walking to your car. Before getting in, check the back seat and around the car.
  •     Do not leave packages visible in your car, put them in the trunk instead.
  •     Pay attention to who and what is going on around you. If someone is watching or following you, contact mall security for help.
  •     Talk to children about what they should do if you are separated or if they are approached by a stranger. Have them memorize your cell phone number. Teach them to alert mall personnel or store security employees if they need help.

Shopping Online:

  •     Secure your personal computers by updating your anti-virus, anti-spyware, and anti-spam software, as well as ensuring you have a firewall installed.
  •     Keep your personal information private and your password secure. Do not respond to requests to “verify” your password or credit card information unless you initiated the contact.
  •     Beware of “bargains” from companies you are not familiar with—if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  •     Shop with companies you know and trust and only use secure websites for purchases. Look for the icon of a locked padlock at the bottom of the screen or “https” in the web address.

For more helpful tips for safe online shopping, please visit: https://www.alertid.com/search/internet-safety.asp.

About AlertID
AlertID, the nationwide neighborhood safety network, is available online as well as on your smartphone to help protect families by providing the information you need to keep your kids safe. Members are able to view an interactive map displaying crimes and sex offenders currently in their selected neighborhoods and can receive alerts and information for multiple locations such as their homes, schools or offices that include: law enforcement emergency alerts, crime and sex offender alerts, prevention tips and much more. Additionally, the app acts as a virtual neighborhood watch where members can share photos and information regarding suspicious activity with neighbors. The AlertID mobile app is available for download on iTunes or the Android market. To sign up for an AlertID account or for more information, please go to [http://www.AlertID.com.

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David Ayala
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