General Safety Tips
Protecting Yourself at Home, in Your Room or Apartment
- Lock your door, even when you intend to return home shortly or even if you are just going down the hall. It takes a thief ten seconds or less to enter an open room and steal your property.
- Do not leave your phone or computer unattended in public places.
- Lock or secure doors and windows when you are alone or asleep.
- Keep emergency numbers by your phone.
- Do not leave messages on your door indicating you are away and when you will return.
- Do not let strangers enter dormitory or premises.
- Do not prop open outer doors.
- If someone asks to use your phone for an emergency, offer to call for them instead of allowing them access to your residence.
- Do not put your address on your key ring.
- Know your neighbors.
- Do no leave keys in hiding places. Thieves will find them. Carry your keys or make sure that anyone who truly needs them has their own copy.
- Call 911 to report suspicious persons or activity in or around your neighborhood.
- Open a savings or checking account instead of keeping money in your room.
- Keep automatic teller machine (ATM) cards in a safe place, keep you PIN number secret. When possible, only use ATMs during the day.
- Instead of carrying large sums of cash use a charge card. Some charge cards insure property purchased with those cards against loss, theft or damage.
- If you find yourself in immediate danger, call 911; try to stay calm and get away at the first opportunity.
Protect Yourself When Walking
- Avoid walking alone at night unless absolutely necessary.
- Keep to well lit commonly traveled routes.
- Avoid shortcuts and dark, isolated areas.
- Walk purposefully, know where you are going, project a non-nonsense image.
- Avoid potentially dangerous situations.
- If you feel threatened, cross the street, locate an emergency phone, or enter a store or place of business even if you have just left it.
- Have your door keys ready; carry them in your pockets, not buried in a purse.
Protect Your Automobile, Bicycle or Moped
- Always lock your car and roll up the windows. (One in five stolen cars was left with keys in the ignition.)
- When entering your vehicle, lock the doors as soon as you shut them.
- Lock bikes to immovable objects or bike racks with hardened alloy locks and chains or U-shaped lock.
- Do not leave tempting valuables or property visible inside the car. Lock these items in the trunk.
- Lock mopeds as you would bikes.
- Look into your car before getting in. Lock doors and roll up windows once inside for protection.
- Never pick up hitchhikers.
- Carry change for emergency calls. 911 is a free call.
- Always keep your cell phone charged and keep a car charger in your vehicle.
- Drive to a police or fire station or open place of business if you feel you are being followed.
- Do not stop to help occupants of stopped or disabled vehicles. Continue driving to the nearest phone and call for assistance for them.
- Raise the hood, then lock yourself into your car if it breaks down. If someone stops and offers you help, remain in your car and ask them to phone for help. Do not worry about seeming rude.