Here are some simple precautions to protect yourself inside and outside your home, covering how to secure your home, safety outside your home, scams, identity theft and what to do if you are affected by crime.
For more detailed information on personal security at home or out and about download our guide Staying safe from the box on the right. Another guide, Avoiding scams, explains how to protect yourself from bogus callers, pyramid schemes, internet scams and more.
Most burglars are opportunists and they will look for unlocked doors or opened windows to get in.
You can reduce the risk of burglary and make yourself feel safer by taking these steps:
For more advice on preventing burglaries, see our page of burglary prevention advice from the Metropolitan Police.
Contact your local police station and ask to speak to a Crime Prevention Officer for advice on security.
Visible burglar alarms will deter opportunist burglars and increase the security of your home.
Attacks on people by strangers in public places are rare and violent crime accounts for a small part of all recorded crime.
You can reduce the risk of attack further:
Scams can take a variety of forms such as unsolicited prize draws, lotteries or windfalls, pyramid schemes, clairvoyant scams and emails and text messages linked to a premium rate telephone line.
To protect yourself from scams:
If you think you have been the victim of a scam, or if you suspect a scam, call Consumer Direct for advice on 08454 04 05 06 (lo-call rate) or visit the Consumer Direct website..
In identity theft criminals use your personal information to carry out fraud on your bank accounts or to use your name in another fraudulent way.
To keep your bank account safe:
For more information see the Home Office's Consumer Direct website...
Victim Support is a national charity that provides free and confidential information and support to victims of crime, whether or not they report the crime to the police. It also runs a Witness Service, which helps people who are going to court, before, during and after the trial. Visit the Consumer Direct website...
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) compensates victims of crime who have suffered a personal injury or trauma. This compensation is not available to replace stolen or damaged possessions that are not covered by insurance.See the Consumer Direct website.. for claim details. Your local Victim Support scheme or Citizens Advice Bureau may be able to help you with your application.
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