Monday, December 22, 2008

Keep Your Holiday Gifts Secure

Holiday gift-giving has begun.

That flat-screen TV and iPhone you got are great, but remember they were meant for you and not some thief. Your holiday won’t be a happy one if you become the victim of a crime.

The Collier County Sheriff’s Office offers these tips to help you protect yourself from thieves:

- As soon as you receive that special gift, mark it with your driver’s license number. If it cannot be marked, take color pictures or video. And record the serial number and put it away for safe keeping.

- Consider putting valuable gifts such as jewelry on layaway and leaving them in the store until just before Christmas.

- Be careful about discussing any valuable gifts you received with strangers.

- Be careful about the after-Christmas garbage you put out for pickup. Put smaller waste in a black trash bag and break down all the bigger boxes and turn them inside out so the labels cannot be seen.

- Do not leave opened valuable gifts under the tree, especially if the tree is in front of a window where they can be easily seen from the outside.

For more information about holiday safety, contact the Collier County Sheriff’s Office’s Crime Prevention Section at 793-9391.