By Chi Ibe
This has been going around on Blackberries recently, and we found it very useful to share with our readers. It appears sourced from the Human Resources department of a multinational.
As we approach end-of-year activities, there is the likelihood of increased criminality. Historically, the rate of violent crimes such as kidnap for ransom, armed robbery, carjacking, extortion, fraud and other petty crimes tend to increase during this period.
Personal awareness of the prevalence and tactics of criminals remains the first line of security risk mitigation. (You) are expected to take responsibility for their personal security, by being vigilant and consciously avoiding behaviors that will expose them to criminal attacks.
The following security tips are considered helpful:
* Be interested in knowing about security threats and activities in your locality – route to work, shopping places, home/residence and house of worship e.t.c. Develop the habit of asking friends/colleagues/neighbours about what is happening around your localities with respect to security.
* Remember to lock your doors and windows before leaving home or resting at night.
* Check where your children are playing and be aware of the whereabouts of family members are at any given time. Always tell someone where you are going and what time you expect to arrive.
* Remember your personal journey management – vary your times and routes: don’t set patterns. Avoid known trouble spots and avoid night time driving.
* Be vigilant especially after social gatherings and when returning from places of worship, restaurants, clubs and supermarkets, etc.
* Be alert when returning to your home or compound. Ensure that you are not being followed or that there are no unknown persons loitering near your gate/premises. If you are in any doubt, drive on to a known or secure location such as a police station and report your doubt/suspicion.
* Avoid non-critical trips. Minimize night time movements. When travelling, avoid stopping in lonely, obscure places. Fill your fuel tank before you embark on a journey and stop to buy fuel only in major towns/cities.
* Do not flaunt your wealth! Do not display or expose anything of value either in your car or at home where it may be seen from outside as they may attract criminal attacks.
* As much as it is practicable, conceal your identity. A low profile lifestyle may reduce your vulnerability to criminal attacks.
* Avoid carrying large amounts of cash and where possible, consider transactions in banks within Shell premises.
* Avoid using ATMs in public places and during dark hours.
* Limit the number of people that know your personal details and travel arrangements.
* Ensure you carry valid vehicle papers and pertinent travel documents at all times.
* If you feel that something is instinctively wrong, it probably is – report it! FEEL/SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING.
* Have a functional means of communication. Have adequate call credit on your phone. Being able to make that call could just be what you need to handle unpleasant circumstances.