Be Alert When Out & About
- Carry your purse close to your body, not dangling by the straps. Put a wallet in an inside coat or front pant pocket.
- Don't carry credit cards you don't need or large amounts of cash.
- Go with friends or family, not alone.
- If someone or something makes you uneasy, trust your instincts and leave.
- Sit close to the driver or near the exit while riding the bus.
- Use direct deposit for Social Security and other regular checks.
- Whether you're a passenger or driver, keep car doors locked. Be particularly alert in parking lots and garages. Park near an entrance.
Make Your Home Safe & Secure
- Ask for photo identification from service or delivery people before letting them in. If you are the least bit worried, call the company to verify.
- Be sure your street address number is large, clear of obstruction, and well-lighted so police and other emergency personnel can find your home quickly.
- Consider a home alarm system that provides emergency monitoring for burglary, fire, and medical emergencies.
- Install good locks on doors and windows. Use them! Don't hide keys in mailboxes and planters or under doormats. Instead, leave an extra set of keys with a neighbor or friend.
Watch Out for Con Artists
- Beware of individuals claiming to represent companies, consumer organizations, or government agencies that offer to recover lost money from fraudulent telemarketers for a fee.
- Don't fall for anything that sounds too good to be true - a free vacation, sweepstakes prizes, cures for cancer and arthritis, a low-risk, high-yield investment scheme.
- Don't let anyone rush you into signing anything - an insurance policy, a sales agreement, a contract. Read it carefully and have someone you trust check it over.
- Never give your credit card, phone card, Social Security, or bank account number to anyone over the phone. It's illegal for telemarketers to ask for these numbers to verify a prize or gift.
- If you are suspicious, check it out with the police, the Better Business Bureaus, the Missouri Consumer Protection Division, or contact the National Fraud Information Center.