Practical Suggestions on Staying Safe
Jarrod Nel of Furion Security advises that as we approach the ‘silly’ season, with most of us looking forward to a well-deserved break, we unfortunately tend to forget about matters such as the dramatic increase in crime over this period; we are distracted by the festivities and the excitement of going on holiday. Here is a practical reminder of what we should be cognisant of when engaging in certain activities.
- An all-time favourite – shopping! As far as possible remain vigilant when shopping, and be cognisant of what you’re wearing, such as expensive watches and jewellery. These items of adornment will always attract attention, particularly over the holiday period. Make a habit of placing these items in the boot of your vehicle before entering shopping malls if you have forgotten to leave them at home.
- When returning home, regularly glance in your rear view mirror to ensure that you’re not being followed. If anything looks suspicious, drive past the entrance and rather call your security company or the armed response. Advise them of your location and request to be escorted inside. Failing that, drive to your local police station and request assistance.
- Furion management have attended CFP meetings at the Norwood SAPS, and been informed of a dramatic increase in house-breakings and vehicle hijackings in the suburb of Houghton Estate and surrounding areas. Speak to the security company guarding your estate and find out what is happening in your area.
- Never leave valuables in your vehicle, in plain sight of anyone walking by.
- It goes without saying that children must never be left unattended in vehicles, even if you think it will only be for a short time, while you pop into a convenience store.
- If you feel that carrying a firearm is necessary, please make sure it’s either on your person or locked away in a safe. The theft of firearms is reported to be on the increase.
- Employment of temporary staff over this holiday period is common, since permanent staff members go on leave. Please exercise the utmost caution when engaging anyone new and conduct reference checks.
- It is advisable to let a relative or friend know for which period you will be away, so that they can look out for anything untoward if driving past your property, or raise the alarm should you not return home.
- Passports and other valuable documents should be locked away safely when arriving at your destination, and when not in use.
- When leaving a bank after making a cash withdrawal, make certain you’re not being followed. Exercise extreme caution when using an ATM – particularly one that may be in a fairly remote location.
- If you employ staff, labourers or sub-contractors who are not in possession of a South African bank account, consider another method of payment other than paying them in cash on the property.
- When disposing of refuse please be cognisant of what is being discarded. The new credit/debit/ATM access cards are usually affixed to paper that contains personal details i.e. ID numbers, addresses, etc. Utility bills, telephone accounts and bank statements all have valuable information printed on them. The scrummaging by recycling people through our refuse may, at first blush, appear innocent, even innovative, but it is also known that a valuable piece of information may end up being the ‘catch of the day’.
- Jarrod Nel of Furion Security can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org / www.furionsecurity.co.za