Personal safety techniques
Please consider the techniques below to improve your personal safety.
- Look self-confident and walk with purpose. Try not to make yourself look vulnerable or 'an easy target'.
- Wear shoulder bags with the flap facing you and the strap over both your arm and your head. Wearing the bag across your body like this is better than wearing the bag just over your shoulder.
- Be aware of what's around you. Personal music players (MP3, iPods) and large hoods on coats can distract you.
- Don't walk and talk. Using your mobile phone distracts you. It also makes you 'an easy target' for a thief - a mobile phone is stolen in half of all robberies and a mobile phone is the only thing that’s stolen in a third of all robberies.
- Register your phone for free at Immobilise (opens new window) - this helps the police to recover your phone if it's stolen.
- Cover jewellery when you go out.
- If you are carrying money, carry only what you need. Keep cheque and credit cards separate from cheque books.
- Never carry your Personal Identification Number (PIN) codes.
- Don't leave bags unattended.
- Hide purses and wallets in an inside pocket.
- Avoid passing stationary cars with their engines running and people sitting in them. This advice particularly applies to young people.
- Cross the road - several times if necessary.
- Walk to a busy place - like a shop, an office, or petrol station - or knock on someone's door.
- Call a friend or family member to come and meet you or pick you up.
- Only if you are confident enough and other people are around to hear you, consider turning and facing the suspect and shouting in an authoritative voice 'Are you following me?'
- Read about the law on using 'reasonable force' to protect yourself.