Tips for Staying Safe While Holiday Shopping

The holidays are a time for celebrating, relaxing and rejoicing! Unfortunately there is also a darker side that comes in the form of greed. Since, I have my share of stories to tell about theft… I wanted to share some tips about staying safe while shopping during holiday season. I am a HotSpot Shield Ambassador, this is a sponsored post. All opinions and mishaps are my own. Let’s stay safe this season!

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Tips for Safe Holiday Shopping

I want to share with you some unfortunate things that have personally happened to me over the years. While these situations didn’t necessarily happen to me over the holidays or all at once, they are alarming.

When your identity is threatened, it feels like the world is crashing down around you. 

✔ Someone smashed my car window and stole my purse.
✔ Someone broke into my car trunk and stole my purse
✔ Someone smashed my car window and stole my radio
✔ Someone smashed my car window and stole my GPS

Here are my simple, yet sometimes overlooked tips.

Keep Your Money Safe

You’ll always need money and credit cards while shopping. Keep yours in a safe and hidden place. When shopping in busy areas, if you can just stick to keeping a wallet tucked into your clothing where it’s not visible. Sometimes having a large handbag that you are struggling to hold with all your shopping bags is just the thing that a thief is looking to grab.

Auto Safety

If you are shopping and you have a car, make sure to hide your shopping bounty and bags in the truck. Never leave anything visible in your automobile. This will encourage robbers to break into your car.  Also, make sure that nobody is watching you when you do put bags in your truck because that can also be dangerous.

Be Aware of Your Surroundings

No matter where you are shopping or walking in a parking garage, be vigilant.  Steer clear of dark and desolate areas. Stay in crowds! Pay attention to your surroundings, this could be one of the most important things that you do this season.

Safety in Numbers

Whenever possible, shop with a friend or two.  You’ll always be less approachable when you have companions with you.

Avoid Cell Phone Distractions

This goes along with being aware of your surroundings. You’ll be an easy target if you aren’t paying attention. If you have a cell phone, keep it hidden. You might need it in case of an emergency, but you’ll also want to have it out of a potential theft’s sight.

Protect Yourself While Shopping Online

Nowadays I find myself shopping more and more online. This doesn’t mean that you can’t become a victim though. Make sure to make sure the online websites you are shopping from are secure.  You can do this by signing up for a free service like HotSpot Shield. Visiting websites through their technology, they will encrypt all of your data to protect you from identity theft.

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Skip knocking on wood and just take action!

Here are some alarming facts that I learned through HotSpot Shield:

3x more people suffered from cyber-crime than offline crimes in the last 12 months.

75% of those who have used Wi-Fi have experienced cyber crime.

49% of public Wi-Fi networks are unsecured and unencrypted.

Don’t become a percentage!  Sign up for HotSpot Shield, it’s free!

Stay in the loop and like HotSpot Shield on Facebook!

Have you ever been a victim of theft?

What actions do you take to stay safe while holiday shopping? 

 

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Comments

  1. says

    Thankfully I have not been a victim of theft. I also use Hotspot Shield on our computers and phones for an extra layer of protection. Another thing we do for online shopping is that our Credit Card company provides one time use credit card numbers so should the retail servers get hacked the number can’t be used for anything else anyway. The joke’s on the hacker!

  2. Meagan says

    Thankfully I’ve never experienced theft, but it’s important to stay safe! Something that I like to do is to always use a credit card if I have to hand over my card to someone (like at a restaurant). This way, the mess is alot easier to clean up if identity theft occurs!

  3. says

    I always hide my shopping loot in the back. These are great tips, looks like you have learned a lot from past experiences. Sorry you have had to be an unfortunate victim to these crimes.

  4. says

    Those are great tips! I had someone steal my stereo system from my car when it was at the mechanic’s shop once- I’m still angry about that!

  5. says

    I’m always careful with my purse/wallet and shopping bags. I try to attach everything to the stroller and keep it right in front of me – between me and the stroller – so that if someone wants it, they’ll have to go through me first and that’s not gonna happen!

  6. Ashley - Embracing Beauty says

    I’m so paranoid when I’m out shopping, especially during the holidays. I’m glad to know that I’m not crazy and that it’s a good way to be. :)

  7. Vonnie says

    Great tips! Whenever we go shopping and have lots of packages/bags, I try to “hide” them. Just paying attention to your surrounds!

  8. Amy Desrosiers says

    I love this check list. I always get so freaked when I am in the parking lot and putting my kids in the carseats. I feel so vulnerable then.

  9. Shauna says

    Great tips… I am always aware of my surroundings and keep my purse on the front of my body, CLOSED…

  10. Janeane Davis says

    Thanks for sharing these tips. They are good tips for keeping safe while shopping all year long.

  11. says

    Fortunately I have never been the victim of anything being stolen while shopping, but I am always super nervous that something could happen. Thanks for the tips.

  12. says

    These tips are so important. There was a recent report on the news where I live of someones information being stolen while they were shopping and used within the ensuing 36 hours to rack up thousands of dollars in charges. I’ve been a victim of identity theft myself and it takes years upon years to get your full identity back. This is a great time and place for these tips.

  13. says

    The amount of people who have experienced some levels of cyber crimes whether it is contracting a malware virus on their computer, tablet, or phone. I agree the HotSpot Shield is a good way to go. I have used it in the past too and it was very helpful.