Holiday shoplifters, beware. Greensboro police will be beefing up their presence in local stores and malls this holiday season.
Beginning Black Friday, police will increase their patrols on foot, bicycle and marked cars.
Police are urging holiday shoppers to take precautions against criminals who often take advantage of large crowds and packed parking lots, looking for unlocked cars and unsuspecting victims.
Greensboro police encourage shoppers to take the following precautions before hitting the stores this holiday season:
•Avoid carrying large amounts of cash: pay with check, credit or debit whenever possible.
•Deter pickpockets and purse-snatchers. Carry your purse close to your body. Put your wallet in a front pants pocket or inside a coat pocket. Never leave your purse unattended in your buggy. Don’t overburden yourself with packages.
•Park in an area with good lighting. Lock the car. Close the windows. Hide shopping bags and valuables in the trunk.
•Shopping with kids? Teach them to go to a police officer, store clerk or security guard if you get separated. Make sure they know your phone numbers.
•Use ATMs in well lighted, populated areas. Store and bank ATMS during the day are the best. Scan the area before using the ATM. If you see a person loitering for no reason, go to another location. If you see something strange during the transaction, push cancel, take your card, and leave the area. If you suspect danger, promptly enter the nearest store or building.
•Record your credit card numbers, and contact information on the issuer. Notify the issuer immediately if your card is lost, stolen or misused.
•Always be aware of your surroundings! If someone suspicious approaches, change directions and go to a populated area. Report suspicious activity to the nearest police officer.