General Safety and Tips

Here are some easy ways to prevent thefts and other crimes to yourself and your property while on campus...

Lock Your Door!!!

Locking your door is the single best deterrent to the would-be thief in the dormitory, office or other residence. Doors left unlocked for just one minute are a great risk. It takes about eight seconds to remove valuables from an unlocked room. Many rip-offs occur while the occupant is on the same floor, having left for one minute to visit a bathroom or neighbor. In the average year University Police investigate over 400 thefts, 50 burglaries and many other crimes. Many of these crimes could have been prevented by locking doors. It is also a good idea to lock valuables in a cabinet, closet or drawer with a good security lock.

Keep Your Keys!!!

Keys are an important way of keeping yourself and your property safe. Here are a few tips about keeping your keys safe:

  1. Do not loan your keys to anyone; their carelessness may lead to your loss.
  2. Do not ID a key-ring with your address; duplicates can be used at a later date.
  3. Do not label keys indicating which door or lock they fit. If necessary, color code the key with a sticker to remind yourself what it goes to.
  4. Do not leave keys lying around or in unused clothing; duplicates can be made.
  5. Keep keys immediately ready in hand when arriving at car or residence.
  6. If your keys become lost or stolen, notify the University Police or issuing agent immediately.

Burglary Prevention Tips:

  1. Be aware of the "wrong number" gimmick; it is used to see if you are home.
  2. If you notice strangers anywhere, call the police to check on them.
  3. Make your neighbor aware of your absence and don't leave a note on your door announcing that you're not there.
  4. DEMAND ID from strangers before allowing them inside.
  5. Maintain an inventory of all valuables using serial number, model and description.
  6. DO NOT ENTER a room or apartment if you think you have been burglarized (open doors and windows that were not when you left should be considered potential burglaries). Call the police IMMEDIATELY from a safe place!!!

Other Helpful Hints:

  • When you report suspicious persons or incidents:
    • Supply address of the incident.
    • Give number of individuals who are involved.
    • Describe what is happening.
    • Obtain a description of suspects (approximate age, height, weight, complexion, clothing)
    • Notice if any weapons are involved.
    • Stay on the phone while it is safe or until told otherwise.
  • When you park:
    • Lock ignition and remove keys.
    • Close and lock windows and doors.
    • Keep all valuables out of sight; use the trunk whenever possible.
    • Choose a well-lit area to park at night.
    • When returning to your vehicle, have your keys ready and check interior before entering.
  • When you drive:
    • Do not pick up hitchhikers
    • Keep doors locked; be alert at traffic stops.
    • Do not lower windows for strangers; demand credentials.
    • If stalled, ask for aid through a cracked window; remain in your vehicle.
    • Travel well-lit streets.
  • When you walk:
    • NEVER WALK ALONE, especially at night.
    • Do not take shortcuts; travel well-lit busy routes.
    • If you feel like you're being followed, change directions and head for an area with lights and people.
    • If you're in trouble, SCREAM!!! It's you're number one defense.