The term “Black Friday” has a long and interesting history (here’s a link, if you’re interested), but the most widely accepted definition is that a company’s red ink (many retailers operate “in the red” for much of the year) turns to black ink in the week that starts the day after Thanksgiving. Why? Because so many of us head out to shop that we can literally turn some companies profitable. Contrary to popular belief, Black Friday is rarely the busiest shopping day of the year: that honor is usually reserved for the Saturday before Christmas. What does all this have to do with home security and your peace of mind? FrontPoint wants your shopping experience to be as safe and stress-free as possible – so here is our Top Five list of Black Friday Shopping Safety Tips.
The bargains and early hours now associated with Black Friday have created their own challenges: add in the risk of you becoming a victim when shopping, and you can see why we are concerned on your behalf. This is also a time when the bad guys are out in force, hoping to catch you unaware.
- Try to shop with a friend or relative. There’s safety in numbers: one of you can watch what you have already purchased, while the other can line up for the next bargain. Never leave a package unattended.
- Needless to say, always lock your vehicle and never leave packages in plain sight inside it. Put bags and parcels in the trunk, and be aware of people around you while you do.
- Park in a well lighted area. Always look into the back seat of the car before you get into your vehicle. If you feel uneasy about going to your vehicle, ask one of the security guards to walk with you to your car.
- Have a purse with straps long enough to go over your shoulder. Do not lay it down even for a second. Be careful showing the inside of your purse. Keep it zipped or locked until you are checking out. And be aware if someone starts jostling or rubbing up against you: that’s how pick-pockets draw away your attention.
- If you are planning to be out for even a short while, lock your house securely and arm your alarm system (here’s a reminder on “Stay” vs. “away” arming). This is a perfect day for an intruder to target your home, since plenty of us are crawling the malls in search of the perfect presents.
And here’s a very important post-holiday home security tip, a few weeks ahead of time:
After the holidays it’s important to continue to protect your home, family and valuables from potential thieves by not advertising what your family received. Wait to put out your wrappings and empty boxes until right before the sanitation folks come to pick up. There are plenty of documented stories where thieves scoped out a neighborhood to see what people have purchased for the holidays, such as flat screen TV’s, computers, and high-end gaming systems – then came back later to help themselves.
We wish you and your family a most Happy Thanksgiving. This is a special time of year, when we can feel grateful for our various blessings: health, family, or whatever your particular blessings may be. At FrontPoint, we’re proud to provide a blessing of our own – the peace of mind that comes from safer, smarter, simpler, and more affordable protection for a growing universe of homes and businesses across the US and Canada.