Holiday Shopping Tips
By: Rob Baquera, Public Information Officer, Roseville Police Department
The holiday season is here and many of us have started to resume some of our pre-pandemic routines.
There are two things to consider since the last time we purchased those holiday gifts:
- We’ve shifted the frequency for how often we shop online or through mobile applications.
- It’s been a while since we last visited the mall or many of our favorite retail locations.
These two factors have created plenty of opportunities that criminals will use to take to take advantage of unsuspecting shoppers. No matter how you shop, keep these tips in mind the next time you order something online or walk into an actual store.
Tips to stay safe while you are out and about:
- Avoid distracted walking; be aware of your surroundings and whatever items you may be carrying.
- Use purses that zip or latch as this makes it more difficult for someone to slip their hand in and your wallet out.
- If carrying a bag, try to keep it in front of you, close to your body, or under your arm.
- If possible, leave your purse or valuables at home – take only what you need.
- Do not carry any more cash or credit cards than needed – more often than not, one card is enough.
- Walk in busy, well-lit areas, or go shopping in groups.
- Put shopping bags in your trunk before you park, be aware of prying eyes.
Online shopping offers a convenient way to shop and avoid the crowds; however, it may make you vulnerable to identity theft or porch pirates.
Tips to stay safe while shopping from home:
- Try to shop from reputable websites or sites you already trust and make sure you recognize the payment website (Confirm that you have not been diverted to another website to enter your payment information.).
- Pay using verified payment websites (sites that start with https://).
- Create strong passwords for all your online accounts – avoid passwords like: Password1 or Roseville123.
- Avoid clicking on suspicious or odd emails – always verify the sender is from a recognized email address.
- If you are going to be away from home for several days, consider placing a hold on your U.S. mail.
- Request delivery companies hide packages, if possible, to avoid porch package thefts.
- Regularly check your bank or credit card statements to ensure there are no unauthorized transactions.
Being aware and proactive while shopping can help ensure that you have a wonderful and memorable holiday season. If you believe you have unauthorized bank or credit card charges, contact the financial institution immediately. If your mail or packages are stolen, contact the seller and file a crime report on the Roseville Police Department’s website.