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Police urge holiday shoppers to beware of thieves

MEDIA RELEASE

With the holiday shopping season in full swing, Big Island police offer shoppers the following tips to reduce the possibility of being a victim of theft or identity theft.

When shopping, do not leave purses or bags unattended in shopping carts. All it takes is a split second for a thief to walk by, remove your bag and flee undetected. Shoppers should keep their bags or purses on their person and zipped or snapped shut.

When paying for merchandise, be wary of openly displaying checkbooks or credit cards, as they contain vital financial information that identity thieves can write down or photograph with smart phones. If paying with cash, avoid openly displaying the contents of your wallet.

When approaching your vehicle to load your purchases, keep at least one hand free to open your trunk or doors. While loading your packages, don’t leave your handbag or purse unattended.

To eliminate drawing unwanted attention to contents in your vehicle while doing additional shopping, conceal any packages or bags so they are not visible.

“Unfortunately, during the holidays, our citizens can be victimized,”said Lieutenant Gregory Esteban. “We are offering these tips as a precaution so that everyone can enjoy this festive season.”

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