Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Guest Blogger: UCPD - Holiday Safety Tips

Protect your home
  • Always lock doors and windows when you leave the house, even if you will only be away for a few minutes.
  • Never display gifts where they can be seen from the window or doorway.If someone comes to your home asking for a donation or claiming to be delivering a package, always ask for official identification.
Shop Safely
  • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash; pay with a check or credit card whenever possible.
  • Never flaunt your money or expensive jewelry or clothing.
  • Walk confidently, and be alert. Notice who passes you and who is behind you. Be especially mindful of pickpockets on crowded busses and trains and among crowds of holiday shoppers.
  • If you drive, park in a well-lit space, and always lock the car, close the windows and hide shopping bags and gift in the trunks.
  • Watch out for con games and frauds
  • When someone asks you for a donation on the street or at your home, ask to see official identification for the organization or the solicitor. Find out what the purpose of the charity is and how your donation would be used. Ask if contributions are tax deductible. If you’re not satisfied with the answers, don’t give.
  • Be suspicious of charities that only accept cash. If you give a check, make it out to the organization not to an individual.
  • If a solicitor reaches you by phone, offer to mail your donation. Never give information about your credit card or the number over the telephone.