More than 13 million Americans become victims of crime every year. While much is done reactively when crimes are committed, Master Lock, an industry leader in safety and security, is encouraging consumers to begin practicing basic daily crime prevention tactics during Crime Prevention Month this October.
“With varying commitments and the demands on our time on a daily basis, overall safety and crime prevention can easily slip people’s minds,” says Rebecca Smith, vice president, marketing for Master Lock. “Crime Prevention Month is the perfect time to remind consumers to take just a small amount of time to think about not only their own general safety, but crime prevention overall.”
Master Lock has created a series of simple tips to help consumers change their safety mindset, be aware of their surroundings and take small precautions to stay safe during Crime Prevention Month and beyond:
1. Lock everything up. It is essential to keep your home, vehicles, valuables and family safe at all times. Whether you’re at home or away for the day, all points of entry should be locked, and more valuable items should be stored in secure areas. Consider utilizing such Master Lock security products as key safes, locking storage boxes and padlocks for extra protection. Every family member, including children, should know how to secure everything from windows and doors to garages and sheds.
2. Limit availability of personal information. When on the go, carry only what you need. Do not keep social security cards, birth certificates or passports in purses or wallets. If possible, remove your name from marketing lists to reduce identifying junk mail and shred credit card offers that still come through to decrease the chance that your personal information could be accepted on your behalf by a stranger. You may even want to consider storing confidential data and information in a secure, online location where only you have access.
3. Start a neighborhood watch. Your street, parks and neighborhood should be an area where you and your family feel most comfortable. Forming relationships with neighbors can ensure there are additional watchful eyes on your home. Take this one step further by mobilizing a group of surrounding homeowners, encouraging each other to keep your eyes and ears open for anything suspicious and arranging regular patrols to increase neighborhood activity. In many cases, local police departments or PTAs will have resources to help you get started.
4. Trust your instincts. If a specific person or place causes you to feel uneasy, avoid the situation by removing yourself completely and alert authorities if a suspicious person is lurking in your neighborhood.
5. If a crime occurs, report it! Don’t be afraid or embarrassed to share with the police, family or friends if you experience some sort of crime, regardless of how small. Relating your experiences can help the police or other families ensure the incident does not occur again.
For more information, visi www.masterlock.com.