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A 1 Security Crime of the Week

Lock It Or Lose It

“Tis the season”. The best way to avoid being the victim of a crime is to take precautions by protecting yourself, your property and your valuables. The Annual Lock It or Lose It campaign has kicked off in communities across the province, Sarnia included. Whether is a busy shopping parking lot, your driveway or a workplace, leaving a vehicle unlocked or valuables in plain sight makes your car and easy target for those criminals seeking out a “crime of opportunity”. Do your job, don’t help them with theirs.

Valuables such as a GPS, mobile devices, laptops and wallets are common items taken from unlocked vehicles. However, shopping bags, especially at this time of year, are open invitations for thieves.

Here are some useful tips for ensuring your home and your vehicles are protected from being victimized by these criminals:

Never leave your vehicle running or unattended

Always lock your vehicle, keys in your pocket

Park in well-lit areas

Never leave valuables in plain sight. Place shopping bags in the trunk or rear area, covered up

Roll up windows and lock all doors

Keep registration and insurance certificates on your person

Don’t advertise what Santa brought. When putting garbage at curb, fold boxes inside out

Keep garage and shed doors closed and locked

Leave lights on when not at home

Report anything suspicious. Tell your neighbours if you are going to be away for a period of time

Report all thefts, big or small. Your report may be taken over the phone but that report will help officers on patrol to concentrate in areas where frequent thefts or suspicious activity is occurring. When documents are taken, criminals can assume identities, secure credit card accounts and participate in other fraudulent activities. Victims may not realize they have been victimized until it is too late, costing them time and money to rectify the damage.

Taking these extra initiatives may help you from being the victim of a crime.

Call Crime Stoppers if you know who may be responsible for any type of crime. You will remain anonymous and me be eligible to receive a cash reward. Call 1-800-222-8477 or go on line at www.p3tips.com (http://ww.pstips.com)