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Black Friday Safety Tips

With Black Friday right around the corner, we know you'll be staying up late to hunt for deals! Before you head out, take a look at these holiday shopping safety tips from OCSD to keep you and your family safe.

Driving:
• Park in a well-lit area
• Keep your doors locked at all times while you are inside or outside of your vehicle
• Avoid parking next to vans or cars with deeply tinted windows.
• Do not leave packages or valuables visible on the seats of your car. Lock your purchases out of sight, in the trunk or covered by coats and blankets.
• When approaching or leaving your vehicle, be mindful of people nearby or lurking around your car.

Shopping:
• Pay for purchases with credit cards instead of cash whenever possible.
• Carry only one or two credit cards with you so that you can notify your bank immediately if your credit card is lost, stolen, or misused.
• Avoid carrying a purse and wallet by storing a couple credit cards, your keys, and your driver’s license in your front pockets.
• Dress casually and comfortably, avoiding expensive jewelry and carrying large amounts of cash.
• Shop in a group with friends or family members, so you do not overload yourself with packages and can stay alert while transporting your purchases from the store to your car.
• Beware of strangers approaching you for any reason. Thieves will try various methods of distracting you to take your money or belongings. Report any suspicious behavior to store staff or the police.
• If possible, leave small children at home.
• Teach your children to go to a store employee and ask for help in case of separation.
• Never allow children to go to the restroom or car alone.

At Home:
• Packages left unattended at your front door are easy targets for thieves. Sign up for delivery alerts from the shipper so you are ready to bring your shipments inside as soon as possible.
• Consider having packages delivered to local branches of stores and picking them up in-store or getting packages delivered to your office if you will not be home at the time of delivery.
• Leave a radio or television on so the house looks occupied.
• Photograph and mark gifts with your California Driver License number so the Orange County Sheriff’s Department can help return stolen or lost property.
• Be aware that criminals sometimes pose as deliverers and door-to-door solicitors.
• Donate only to recognized charitable organizations, and ask for identification from strangers at your door.