The holiday season has arrived and we are only a few weeks away from 2019! It is the time of year many look forward to spending it with family and friends, buying gifts for their loved ones, and taking holiday vacations. It is also the time of year when thieves are lurking the malls and homes are being burglarized. It is important to remember while this may be the best time of year, it is also the time of opportunity for criminals. These are a few tips to keep in mind while you enjoy the holiday season.

The malls during the holiday season are chaotic from finding parking to the long checkout lines. With the abundant crowds of people it is easy to get distracted, however this is the time to be the most alert. It is very important to be aware of individuals around you. Lurking in the crowds can be an individual waiting for the right moment and opportunity to take someone else’s belongings. You need to be conscious of your purchased items and make sure not to leave any bags unattended. Also, it is important for women to keep their purses closed and close, making sure no one can reach in and take anything. When leaving the mall it is also crucial to be attentive as to who is around when you put your bags in your vehicle. It would be best if you find a friend or family member to go along with you while you check off your Christmas list.

Many who cannot find time to go to the mall or simply refuse to deal with the Christmas chaos, rely on online shopping. This means various packages are being delivered to homes daily. When you order items online make sure you note for the packages to be placed in a discrete spot, behind a plant or behind your porch furniture. Anywhere that it is not visible for anyone driving by.

Once you have completed your holiday shopping we are sure you cannot wait to wrap everything up and put it underneath the Christmas tree.Always keep in mind that burglars can be watching the neighborhood and waiting for the opportunity to commit their crime. Try to not put the gifts so close to a door or window that is visible to anyone from the street. This is a big red flag as many will know whose homes are filled with Christmas goodies. Make sure your doors are always locked, including any back doors or side gates. If you have an alarm system, remember to turn it on before you leave your home. It is also important to be attentive as to who is roaming in your neighborhood. If you see something suspicious, say something and report it.

Another tip to keep in mind is if you are traveling this holiday season make sure you do so safely and keep your home secure. Ask a trustworthy neighbor to keep an eye on your home while you are away. Put your home lights on a timer so the house seems it is being occupied. These are deterrents for anyone thinking about burglarizing your home. Also, be careful with what you are posting on social media during the holiday season. Although it is fun to post about where you will be vacationing, it also important to think about who is viewing your posts. If you post about being away from home for a week, then this leaves individuals knowing that your home will be vacant for a week.

Remember to enjoy yourselves this holiday season but keep your guard up and be aware of your surroundings.

For more information on how you can stay safe this holiday season, please contact our office.

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas, a happy holiday season, and a wonderful 2019 from all of us at Specialized Investigations Consultants!

Author: Claudia Barrios