Rother police have issued a number of tips on how to help prevent crime this autumn.
Rother District Neighbourhood Policing Team suggest many useful ways to stop burglaries and identity fraud.
Advice includes using an automatic time switch on an indoor light or radio tuned in to a chat station, giving the impression that the house is occupied.
Fit security lighting – either dusk to dawn energy efficient lighting that will come on automatically as dusk sets in, or infrared activated lighting which draws attention to movement.
Ensure that doors and windows to the rear of the house are locked and secure as well as sheds as tools can be used to break in.
Trim overgrown plants – don’t give burglars a hiding place.
Use locks and bolts and keep all your keys, including car keys, out of sight and out of reach.
Property mark your valuables with your postcode and your house number or name and photograph articles unsuitable for marking with a ruler in view to show scale.
Intruder alarms are an effective deterrent against burglars but before choosing a system, seek advice to ensure it is the most suitable for your needs.
Identity theft is where criminals find out your personal details and use them to open bank accounts and get credit cards, loans, state benefits and documents such as passports in your name.
Research has shown that it could be as long as 18 months before a victim becomes aware of their identity having been compromised.
The team give a number of signs to look out for which may indicate your identity has been stolen such as receiving no post at all, post expected from your bank has not arrived, receiving bills, invoices or receipts addressed to you for goods you haven’t asked for.
Also receiving letters from solicitors or debt collectors for debts that aren’t yours, letter saying a mobile-phone contract has been set up in your name without your knowledge.
To prevent identity theft, the team suggests keeping personal documents in a safe place, preferably in a lockable drawer or cabinet at home.
Destroy unwanted documents using a shredder like bank statements, receipts, unwanted post.
Never give personal or account details to anyone who contacts you unexpectedly and be aware a bank will never ask for your PIN or for a whole security number or password.
Never carry documents or plastic cards unnecessarily and when not in use keep them in a safe place.
Take care when disposing of or recycling computer equipment remembering that it is sometimes possible to recover this data.
For more advice on crime prevention visit: www.sussex.police.uk.
In an emergency, or if you see a crime in progress, always dial 999.
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