Internet Crime Prevention Tips

  • Do not give sensitive or personal information to anyone unless you are sure they are who they claim to be.
  • Do not download files sent to you by strangers or click on hyperlinks from people you do not know.
  • Update your virus protection software regularly.
  • Be cautious of the information you share on social media.
  • Do not allow others access to your email account.
  • Change your password at least annually.
  • Never give your password to anyone. 

Tips for Avoiding Credit Card Fraud:
 
  • Shred anything with your card number on it.
  • Shred old credit cards when they expire or are replaced.
  • Avoid giving out your card information.
  • Report lost or stolen cards immediately.
  • Check gas stations and ATMs for credit card skimmers.
  • Do not give out your credit card number online unless you are sure the site is secure and reputable.
  • Be cautious when dealing with individuals/companies outside the United States.
  • Keep a list of all your credit cards account information in a secured location.
  • Check your credit card statements carefully for illegal charges and or identity theft.
Keep a list of all your credit cards and account information along with the card issuer’s contact information.  If anything looks suspicious or you lose your credit card(s), contact the card issuer immediately to avoid illegal charges and/or identity theft.
  • Be alert and aware of your surroundings.
  • Consider carrying a noise-making device with you at all times, and use it if you suspect you are in danger. (yell, blow whistle etc.)
  • If you are a victim of an attack, attempt to make as much commotion as possible so that you attract attention.
  • Have a plan in place to deal with a violent situation, if it should occur.
  • Walk with someone else, whenever possible.
  • Always carry a cellular telephone (if possible).
  • Avoid dark, vacant, or deserted areas; use well-lit routes.
  • Walk near the curb on the side of the street facing traffic.
  • If you think you are being followed while walking, change direction and head for a well-lit area with other people around. Cross to the other side of the street rather than confront an individual alone in an isolated area.
  • Be alert when returning home by having your key ready as you approach the door; in addition, if you think someone is inside, don’t go in! Call the police from a nearby phone.
  • If possible, equip your house or apartment door with a peephole and dead bolt lock with a one-inch bolt.
  • Never open your door to strangers. Request identification from all repair or service personnel, and verify the identity before letting them in, especially if you have not called for repairs.
  • Use outside lighting whenever possible.
  • Never hide your door key in a flowerpot or under a mat. In fact, don't hide your door key anywhere outside your residence.
  • Make certain your door is locked whenever you leave, even if only for a short time.
  • When you are away, inform a trusted neighbor of your travel plans. Have them collect mail and other deliveries. Leave shades in their normal positions. If possible, two or more lights on a timer. Use them daily, not just when you're away.
  • Have your car keys in hand when approaching your vehicle.
  • Look under the car as you approach it to be sure no one is hiding under it.
  • If a person gets near your vehicle causing concern, turn around and walk away.
  • Consider attaching a loud whistle to your key chain so you can use it if necessary.
  • Look in the back seat before getting the into car; be sure no one is hiding there, even if you locked the door earlier.
  • After entering your vehicle, immediately lock all doors.
  • When possible, try to avoid parking your vehicle in dark, isolated areas.
  • If your hands are full of bags, consider asking for a security escort from the store, mall, or grocery staff. Be aware of your surroundings when placing items in the trunk, you are more of a target when distracted.
  • When dealing with children and car seats, it is better to put them in the seat, then get in yourself, lock the doors, and then finish buckling the kids up. This keeps you safer and allows you to give your full attention to handling the kids.
  • Lock personal property in the trunk of the car if you cannot take it with you. Do not leave such items as your purse, electronics, laptops or cell phones in view or on seats.
  • Keep plenty of gas in your car and keep the car in good running order. If you should have car trouble, raise the hood, lock yourself in and wait for the police. If someone stops and offers help, stay in your car and ask that person to call for help for you; a relative, a friend or the police.
  • When driving alone at night, let a family member or friend know the route you take and your expected arrival time at your destination.
  • Exercise common sense, and be aware of your surroundings.
  • Have a plan in place to deal with a violent situation if it should occur.
  • Report all suspicious persons and/or activity to the UAB Police.
  • Lock and secure your desk and office when away.
  • Keep valuables out of sight in a closed and locked desk or file cabinet.
  • If you are working late let someone know where you are and how long you expect to be.
  • If you have to work late, keep all doors between you and the public closed and locked after-hours or when appropriate.
  • When leaving work during the hours of darkness, if you need an escort to your vehicle, call the UAB Police Department.
  • If you are entrusted with a UAB key or CARDKEY access card, DO NOT loan it to anyone. Keys and Cardkeys can be easily lost or stolen and misused.
  • Report all suspicious persons and/or activities to the UAB Police.
  • When vendors come to the office to pick up equipment for returns or repairs, ask to see ID or proof of their affiliation with the company.
  • Be cautious if using restrooms, elevators, or stairwells that are isolated or poorly lit; or go with a friend.
  • Report any suspicious, threatening, or alarming behavior of others to your supervisor or the UAB Police immediately. 
  • Do not leave your belongings unattended, even for a few minutes.
  • Always secure your belongings or take them with you.
  • Do not wear headphones that prevent you from being aware of your surroundings.
  • Never leave wallets, cell phones, backpacks, calculators, and laptop computers unattended in a public area. 
  • Money can be replaced: Money is only a material thing and isn’t worth losing your life. If you are being robbed, hand over the money. Give robbers what they want.
  • Being robbed may be one of the scariest things that you will ever face. It’s important to remain calm and don’t show fear. Do not hold anything back. This may save your life. Upsetting the robber is the last thing you want to do!
  • Try to keep calm and remind yourself that you can’t be replaced.  Make a mental note of their appearance.
  • This could be an event that you will remember for the rest of your life; however, everything that you remember about the person can help the police in their investigation. The Police will want to know what they were wearing, shoes, facial appearance, scars, tattoos, hair color, eye color, and anything else that would make this person stand out. Immediately call the Police after the robbery.
Properly securing your bicycle with a quality lock will reduce a crime of opportunity. Thieves know this and have figured out that stealing bikes and bike parts can be a lucrative business. If you own a bicycle, use a sturdy, good quality U-lock. A cable or chain lock is very vulnerable and easily defeated. The U-lock is sold in most bicycle stores.

  • Obey all traffic laws.
  • Go with the flow of traffic.
  • Before turning, stopping, or leaving a lane, give the proper hand signal.
  • Wear a helmet at all times when riding a bicycle.
  •  Use a bike light when riding a bicycle at night.
  • Use a bike rack. Do not park your bicycle in a doorway, on stairs, or blocking any handicapped access.
  • When securing your bicycle, use a sturdy, good quality U- lock.
  • Engrave or permanently mark your bicycle with an identifying number and record that number with UAB police.

  • Carry money for a taxi or public transportation in case your date is cut short; bring a cell phone.
  • “No” means “NO.”
  • If someone is unable to give consent, it is called sexual assault or rape.
  • Never give out personal information (home address, work address, email address).
  • Never go to someone’s room, apartment, house, etc. Always meet in a public place.
  • Ask a lot of questions.
  • If someone is abusive or rude, block and ignore them.  Consider reporting the abusive behavior to police or the university.
  • Make sure you are comfortable with the person you are “talking” to at all times.
  • Always make your own travel arrangements to and from a first date.
  • Do not accept a ride home on the first date.
  • Keep your first date to a specified time limit so you always have an end time.
  • Never feel like you owe it to someone to meet them -- you don’t!
  • If possible, step away and call a friend during the date to confirm that everything is ok.
  • Take your time to get to know someone -- don't be rushed.
  • Make sure anyone you are talking to is willing to provide photos and information about themselves.
  • Download and use the Rave Guardian app.