• Don’t be a soft target distracted by cell phone call(s)
A soft target is defined as a person or person(s) not paying attention to their surroundings. Distracted by cell phone call, appointment, totally unaware of surroundings, shopping or being busy. Research has shown that people are attacked or victimized by an attacker whom they were totally unaware of the fact this individual was stalking or following them.
• Have a plan when out in public
Most people do not have a plan or don’t take the time to exercise good safety habits. It’s better to shop with a debit/credit card. Avoid having large amounts of cash on you when shopping in public. Keep your purse or valuables with you at all times. Avoid being distracted by helping someone regardless how innocent or petty their request. Professional thieves focus on your vulnerability.
• Parking your vehicle
Only park in well-lighted areas at night and as close to your objective as possible during the day and night-time. Example, I always park on the right side of Wal-Mart, shopping mall or grocery store and I look at the light pole for numbering or marking. I do not look at vehicles which maybe gone upon my return. Do not talk with strangers in the parking lot asking for directions, money, handing out fliers, asking the time, etc. Scan the parking area prior to selection of parking space. Look for people sitting in or standing around vehicles. When walking to and from your vehicle to your destination keep your keys in your hands. Your keys can be a weapon or could sound your vehicle alarm if attacked or you feel uncomfortable. Walk to the nearest isle and walk down the middle of it. Do not travel between the vehicles as danger could be lurking there.