Thieves are poised to take advantage of any misques that frantic shoppers make. Help keep your holiday season theft free by following these simple tips:
Protect your purse and wallet:
Your handbag sitting in the shopping cart makes it easy game for a quick criminal if you look away for even a minute. The same goes for hanging it on back of your chair at a food court. Wallets should be carried in a front pocket.
Don't load yourself down:
By minimizing the number of packages you have to juggle, you can pay more attention to your surroundings and you reduce the risk of losing a package.
Dress comfortably and that includes shoes:
Shopping in high heels not only leads to sore feet - it also marks you as a shopper that can't run very fast after a thief.
If you're traveling from store to store by car, hide all purchases in your trunk. Also, don't flash large wads of cash in public.
Proof of purchase:
Buying with a credit or debit card creates a paper trail in case you lose your receipt. Also, many credit card companies offer reimbursement if you're a victim of fraud.
Be especially careful online:
It's safest to patronize familiar retailers on the web. As an extra precaution, consider shopping with a prepaid debit card (available at many retailers).