With recent B&E arrests in the Berkshires is a good time to review a list of steps you should take daily to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your belongings. Massachusetts State Police issued a list of steps you should take to protect yourself, your family, and your property from theft and other crimes.

The list is a long one and most are very sensible, common-sense practices to help prevent being a victim of a selfish and criminal act.
• You should always lock your doors and windows in your home and car.
• Do not leave gifts visible through windows and doors.
• Never open the door for someone you do not know or are not expecting.
• Always Park in a well-lit area when shopping.
• Never leave items in your car. Always lock them in the truck.
• Always be aware of your surroundings and beware of strangers approaching you.
• Always be mindful of your wallet and purse. They are prime targets in a crowd.
• Buy from a trusted retailer or verify the retailer when shopping online.
• Notify your bank or credit card company right away if you believe your card has been compromised.
• Choose a well-lit ATM and always shield your pin when using an ATM machine.
• If you will be traveling have a trusted neighbor keep an eye on your house and collect your mail.

Another step you can take to protect your home year-round is by setting up security cameras around your home. Home security cams are now very inexpensive ranging in price as low as $35. These WIFI cams can be placed on a window sill overlooking your front door, driveway, or any other part of your home inside or out. These cams can detect motion and send an alert directly to your phone. Through an app, you can watch what your camera sees in real-time or you can look back at past events that the camera detected movement. Not only are they a deterrent if visible in a window from outside your home, but they will also provide evidence to police if a crime is committed.

Take these common-sense steps and always be aware of your surroundings and it will help Take a Bite Out of Crime.

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