7 Tricks Thieves Use in 2021 and How to Protect Yourself From Them
Because security systems today are more precise thieves need to be more creative with their scams. From a hoodie on your windshield to asking you to hold a baby, they can easily find ways to get your attention and steal from you. That’s why, in order to find out their plots, sometimes we need to think like them and protect ourselves.
We at Bright Side have a few practical tips you can use to spot a scam and figure out how you can stay on the safe side.
1. Broken phone camera
Some thieves use just a phone as a strategy to scam you. They will approach you, hand you their phone, and ask you to take a picture of them. However, as you try to take a photo you realize the phone camera is broken. So, when you give the phone back to them, that is when the problems start.
You’ll see their reaction starts to change, they become angry, and start to blame you for the broken camera. Then the scammer starts to ask for money because supposedly you were the one who broke the phone. Since some of these situations can easily overcome us or become unsafe it’s better to be selective when you choose who to take a photo for.
2. Impersonating a police officer
This scheme is very common and it’s pretty easy for the thief to steal from you. First of all, when they are acting as a police officer they’ll ask you for very valuable information and maybe even your finances. Now, since the thief is a “policeman” you’ll feel obligated to give your information to them.
Another way a thief uses the disguise of an officer is to check your wallet and skim through your money. Plus if they knock on your door you might let them inside and they’ll have a chance to steal your belongings. That’s why when a police officer approaches you it’s better to ask for their credentials before answering any questions and giving out information.
3. Holding someone’s baby
If someone you don’t know asks you to hold their baby just simply turn around and walk away immediately. This is because when you do hold their baby (either it will seem like the baby is about to fall or they will be asking you directly) you will be pickpocketed.
This can be done by the person who handed you the baby or a partner you didn’t realize was behind you. The only way you can avoid this is to be more observant of your surroundings and the situation.
4. Takeout menus
Even though this might seem simple and ineffective, thieves really do use takeout menus to rob you. They select a few homes and place takeout menus at their doorstep. This way, if they are not picked up it means the homeowners are most likely on vacation and the home is an easy target. So next time you see takeout menus throw them out and don’t leave them lying in front of your house.
In addition to this trick, they also might leave litter outside of a house. Then they check to see if it has been moved. Usually, they use a flattened can.
5. Clothes on the windshield
Lately, there have been many people who have found clothing, like, a shirt, lying on their windshield or wrapped up in the wiper blades. If you ever find yourself in this situation don’t remove the article of clothing, drive away carefully watching your surroundings, and find a safer spot to remove it so that you can safely drive.
Thieves use this method to distract you as you try to untie and remove the garment. They attack you from behind to steal your valuables. This usually happens in parking spaces and garages that are not well lit.
6. A strange device on your car
This scam includes a new generation of GPS trackers that thieves attach to cars. In fact, in the past, these types of trackers were used by the police to follow criminals, but now they can be easily bought online. They are also known as magno trackers because they can be placed on your car magnetically. They attach easily and can be placed even while driving on the highway.
Criminals can use these devices to track your location, to check where you are (at home, at work), and to plan their heist accordingly. That’s why it’s good to check your car for this device and if you do find one, contact the police because they might be able to find out more details about who put it there.
7. Changing your mailing address
When you need to change an address it is usually done through the mail and when we do this scammers have the chance to find out information that can be used against you in order to steal from you.
If you receive your credit card or bank statements via regular mail be aware if they suddenly stop coming and contact the company to see why that is happening.
Have you ever found clothing on your windshield? Or maybe an unknown device? What tips do you use to protect yourself from thieves?