Tough Love Crime Prevention #1

Along with my diverse mixture of rants I would like to present these posts as a mini series.

Disclaimer: I’m not a cop, but I’ve worked with cops for the past 18 years. If I haven’t learned nuf-fin by now (fill in the blank space). . . . . .

This story is simple and can it happen to anyone.

Ms. X leaves her back pack containing her laptop computer and identifications (DMV-Department of Motor Vehicle license, passport, credit/debit cards) in her locked office and goes out to lunch. Upon return, much to her horror, she finds the door to her office open and guess what’s missing? She simply shrugs it off and goes about her business.

Huh? You ask. It gets worse.

Two weeks later she starts getting calls from her credit card companies and banks. Obviously someone(s) had been making a heap of unauthorized transactions on her credit cards and withdrawing money from her accounts. In other words, they were having a ball going on shopping sprees masquerading as her, since they had all of her credentials.

NOW, Ms X runs to the police to file a report! Why? Because she would have to pay back all of that money unless she can prove she’s been a victim of a crime. Which of course she never did. . . . .

Would you like to bet which question the cops and detectives will ask Ms. X first? HOW COME YOU DIDN’T FILE A POLICE REPORT IMMEDIATELY WHEN YOUR BACKPACK WAS FIRST STOLEN?

There are a number of reasons why. First, people are simply clueless as to what to do when a crime is perpetrated against them. They spend days commiserating with relatives and friends who eventually tell them, “Hey, you’d better go to the cops.” Another reason, the stolen laptop may have been workplace issued property, and was immediately replaced. With the computer replaced, Ms. X really wasn’t worried anything until she needed her identification. In New York City and State, you must have a police report in order to have stolen documents and id’s replaced. That means yep, ya gotta go to the cops and file a report.

The most perplexing excuse I’ve heard was “I was too busy to file a report.” or “I had to leave town on business or vacation.” To that I say. Priorities people! Priorities!

The last reason why people refuse to report crimes to the cops is because they themselves “suspect”. The so-called crime perpetrated against them was obviously “payback” for something they did to someone else. . . . . . Hey, what goes around, comes around.

Here are some Tough Love Crime Tips. I say tough because I’m not gonna pull punches. . . . . .

1.     Never, never, never (I can’t say NEVER enough) carry your passport or social security card with you unless you are going to a specific agency which requires that you have them! This means places like, Immigration, Unemployment, The DMV, Court, etc. If you must carry these documents, keep them ON YOUR PERSON, and do not leave them UNATTENDED AT ANYTIME! If necessary purchase one of those special passport wallets that you can wear like a money belt. Women: If need be, wrap it in some tissue and firmly tuck it into your bra! Passports are a GOLDMINE for identity thieves! Once they have that, you are (eh-hem) screwed!

2.     If you carry you computer (laptop, I-pad, Galaxy Pad, etc) in public, do not, I repeat DO NOT keep any personal information on it! Names, addresses, phone numbers, bank account, credit card information should NOT be on there! Use that brain God gave you and memorize your passwords! REFUSE your browsers option to autofill your passwords and codes for you! Why? If your computer autofills it for you, it will autofill it for the identity thief and hacker who is specifically looking for this kind of treasure trove! Stop him or her in their tracks! After all computers are inanimate objects and cannot tell the good guys from the bad. You must think for it, not it for you.

3.     If your devise is made by Apple (I-phone, I-pad, MacBook, MacBook Pro, etc) pony up the money and register it for I-Cloud like YESTERDAY! Why? I-Cloud is a GPS like application which can be used to track down stolen Apple property. This will assist the police in tracking down your stolen item.

4.     Last but not least if you are a victim of a theft like this, report it to the police ASAP (as soon as possible). Why? To prevent what I call the “domino affect”. First the backpack was stolen, now the credit cards are being used, money withdrawn from bank accounts, and websites being accessed. With the American passport stolen, no telling who bought it and is using it to enter the country illegally. . . Yes, I’ve even heard of cases where the identity thieves filed the victim’s tax returns to get the victim’s refund. . . . .

Obviously, the criminals will go to any means to get what they want. We as law abiding citizens must combat them with the same savvy and tenacity!

Remember reporting a crime to the police in a timely fashion helps aid in the investigation and possible quick arrest of the perpetrator(s). It also keeps others from becoming victims of the same person(s) and crimes.

Conclusion: As you can see from the above story, one’s workplace is no longer safe haven from acts of crime. Unfortunately, your own co-workers may be suspect(s).

This means you must be responsible to safeguard your own property. That means taking your property with you when you go out for lunch or take a break(s). Why? Most workplaces will not guarantee it’s safety, and only will send you to the cops, after it’s been stolen.

Along with my diverse mixture of rants I would like to present these posts as a mini series.

Disclaimer: I’m not a cop, but I’ve worked with cops for the past 18 years. If I haven’t learned nuf-fin by now (fill in the blank space). . . . . .

This story is simple and can it happen to anyone.

Ms. X leaves her back pack containing her laptop computer and identifications (DMV-Department of Motor Vehicle license, passport, credit/debit cards) in her locked office and goes out to lunch. Upon return, much to her horror, she finds the door to her office open and guess what’s missing? She simply shrugs it off and goes about her business.

Huh? You ask. It gets worse.

Two weeks later she starts getting calls from her credit card companies and banks. Obviously someone(s) had been making a heap of unauthorized transactions on her credit cards and withdrawing money from her accounts. In other words, they were having a ball going on shopping sprees masquerading as her, since they had all of her credentials.

NOW, Ms X runs to the police to file a report! Why? Because she would have to pay back all of that money unless she can prove she’s been a victim of a crime. Which of course she never did. . . . .

Would you like to bet which question the cops and detectives will ask Ms. X first? HOW COME YOU DIDN’T FILE A POLICE REPORT IMMEDIATELY WHEN YOUR BACKPACK WAS FIRST STOLEN?

There are a number of reasons why. First, people are simply clueless as to what to do when a crime is perpetrated against them. They spend days commiserating with relatives and friends who eventually tell them, “Hey, you’d better go to the cops.” Another reason, the stolen laptop may have been workplace issued property, and was immediately replaced. With the computer replaced, Ms. X really wasn’t worried anything until she needed her identification. In New York City and State, you must have a police report in order to have stolen documents and id’s replaced. That means yep, ya gotta go to the cops and file a report.

The most perplexing excuse I’ve heard was “I was too busy to file a report.” or “I had to leave town on business or vacation.” To that I say. Priorities people! Priorities!

The last reason why people refuse to report crimes to the cops is because they themselves “suspect”. The so-called crime perpetrated against them was obviously “payback” for something they did to someone else. . . . . . Hey, what goes around, comes around.

Here are some Tough Love Crime Tips. I say tough because I’m not gonna pull punches. . . . . .

1.     Never, never, never (I can’t say NEVER enough) carry your passport or social security card with you unless you are going to a specific agency which requires that you have them! This means places like, Immigration, Unemployment, The DMV, Court, etc. If you must carry these documents, keep them ON YOUR PERSON, and do not leave them UNATTENDED AT ANYTIME! If necessary purchase one of those special passport wallets that you can wear like a money belt. Women: If need be, wrap it in some tissue and firmly tuck it into your bra! Passports are a GOLDMINE for identity thieves! Once they have that, you are (eh-hem) screwed!

2.     If you carry you computer (laptop, I-pad, Galaxy Pad, etc) in public, do not, I repeat DO NOT keep any personal information on it! Names, addresses, phone numbers, bank account, credit card information should NOT be on there! Use that brain God gave you and memorize your passwords! REFUSE your browsers option to autofill your passwords and codes for you! Why? If your computer autofills it for you, it will autofill it for the identity thief and hacker who is specifically looking for this kind of treasure trove! Stop him or her in their tracks! After all computers are inanimate objects and cannot tell the good guys from the bad. You must think for it, not it for you.

3.     If your devise is made by Apple (I-phone, I-pad, MacBook, MacBook Pro, etc) pony up the money and register it for I-Cloud like YESTERDAY! Why? I-Cloud is a GPS like application which can be used to track down stolen Apple property. This will assist the police in tracking down your stolen item.

4.     Last but not least if you are a victim of a theft like this, report it to the police ASAP (as soon as possible). Why? To prevent what I call the “domino affect”. First the backpack was stolen, now the credit cards are being used, money withdrawn from bank accounts, and websites being accessed. With the American passport stolen, no telling who bought it and is using it to enter the country illegally. . . Yes, I’ve even heard of cases where the identity thieves filed the victim’s tax returns to get the victim’s refund. . . . .

Obviously, the criminals will go to any means to get what they want. We as law abiding citizens must combat them with the same savvy and tenacity!

Remember reporting a crime to the police in a timely fashion helps aid in the investigation and possible quick arrest of the perpetrator(s). It also keeps others from becoming victims of the same person(s) and crimes.

Conclusion: As you can see from the above story, one’s workplace is no longer safe haven from acts of crime. Unfortunately, your own co-workers may be suspect(s).

This means you must be responsible to safeguard your own property. That means taking your property with you when you go out for lunch or take a break(s). Why? Most workplaces will not guarantee it’s safety, and only will send you to the cops, after it’s been stolen.

Officer “Tuff Luv”


 


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