Crime Prevention Tips

Leaving for a trip?

Before leaving on a trip...

  • Secure Your Residence
  • Have good locks on all doors and windows and use them
  • Make sure your residence looks lived in, not empty
  • Leave shades and blinds in normal position
  • Ask your neighbor to watch your residence.  Leave your address and telephone number so you can be reached
  • Test your smoke and burglar alarms
  • Stop all deliveries.
  • Have someone pickup your mail
  • Arrange for someone to mow your grass to give the home a lived in look
  • Plug in timers to turn on lights, radio and off at appropriate times
  • If you have call forwarding on your phone, forward your calls to a trusted friend
  • Engrave your valuables. Consider taking valuables to a safety deposit box.
  • Put Operation Identification decals on the doors and windows
  • Close and lock garage doors and windows

On the road?

Crime Prevention Tips for on the Road...

  • Never carry large amounts of cash; use traveler’s checks. Keep record of traveler’s check numbers.
  • Be aware of your surroundings and never advertise your plans to strangers. This includes travel routes and the amount of cash your carrying.
  • Do not stop and help a stranded motorist. Go to the nearest phone and call for assistance.
  • If you suspect someone is following you, drive to the nearest service station, restaurant or business and call the Police.
  • If it is unsafe to get out of the vehicle, sound the horn and flash your headlights to draw attention.
  • Do not carry your air tickets or passport in open view.
  • Males are advised to carry their wallets in an inside pocket or front trouser pocket.
  • Females are advised to carry their purse under their arm.
  • Take a picture of your belongings.
  • Keep luggage locked. Label each piece with your name and business address.

Motor Vehicle Safety...

  • Do not identify your keys with vehicle license plate numbers, names or addresses.
  • Carry personal safety devices, preferably on the key chain. Use of a personal safety device will attract attention should you be accosted in any manner.
  • Make sure your vehicle is in good repair. Never operate your vehicle with very little gas left.
  • Tires should be inflated to recommended levels.
  • Park in well-lit areas and in sight of other businesses, in case you have to return to your vehicle in the dark.
  • In underground parkades, park as close to the exit or the attendant as possible.
  • Always lock your vehicle and keep the windows tightly closed, even while driving, to avoid an individual reaching in and grabbing belongings off the seats.
  • When approaching your locked vehicle, make sure you have the appropriate key ready to unlock the door. Look inside before unlocking and entering the vehicle.
  • Never roll your window down more than one inch when speaking with someone who approaches your vehicle. – If you feel uncomfortable, just drive away.

Personal Safety

Personal Safety Tips...

  • Walk with purpose and confidence. Look around, be familiar of your surroundings
  • Wear comfortable shoes
  • Remain on well-lit streets, walking in the center of the walkway, away from bushes, shrubs, doorways and parked vehicles. If you feel uncomfortable, cross the street or stay clear of an area.
  • If you suspect someone is following you, look directly at the suspicious person to let the individual know that you are aware of his/her presence. Do not walk to your residence or vehicle. Walk directly to a business or convenience store, anyplace that has people around, and summon assistance.
  • Transfer valuables such as credit cards, cheques, cash and identification to a small wallet or something similar and carry this on your person, either in your pocket, jacket pocket, or fanny pack
  • Use a personal alarm device.

If you are attacked:

  • Do not freeze and do not panic
  • Attempt to get somebody’s attention by yelling something like “Police”‘ “No” or “Stop”.
  • Assailants do not like attention so this may discourage them.
  • Be very loud and persistent.
  • Responding to an attack will be different for every individual.
  • Use whatever force you feel is necessary to escape.
  • Be ready and take action to get away.

Telephone Fraud

Tips to Avoid Becoming a Victim of Telemarketing Fraud. Telemarketing fraud can happen to anybody. Your family, friends and neighbors could become victims of telemarketing fraud. It is not an isolated or individual crime. It affects all of us. Millions of dollars are taken from Manitobans every year in relation to telemarketing fraud. Victims of telemarketing fraud are often embarrassed and ashamed. That is exactly what the criminals want. When people are embarrassed or ashamed, they are reluctant to tell anyone about the crime, giving the criminals additional time to victimize even more people. Being embarrassed shouldn’t stop you from reporting this crime to police. The sooner a Telemarketing fraud is reported to police, the sooner the criminals can be stopped.  IT TAKES A GREAT DEAL OF COURAGE TO REPORT THIS TYPE OF CRIME. 

Heads up!  Do NOT:

  • believe everyone who calls with an exciting promotion or investment opportunity.
  • disclose personal information about your bank accounts, credit cards or address over the telephone. Don’t be afraid to hang up.
  • be afraid to ask for documentation to verify a product or investment. But remember, even the unscrupulous have professionally prepared literature, catalogues and invoices.
  • be pressured into making a decision. Any legitimate gift or prize will still be available tomorrow.


  • take the time to call a friend, relative, banker or a police agency before making a decision to send money
  • call the police to report any suspicious phone calls or mailings.
  • take the opportunity to ask the caller questions about their offer or promotion. No legitimate company will refuse your inquiries.
  • ask for literature so you can read about the company before making a commitment.
  • ask the company for references from other customers who live in your area.

  Be on Guard for callers with the following offers:

  1. Car pitch: “You have won a car, but money is required up front for taxes, shipping, insurance, etc.”
  2. Cash pitch: “You have won cash, but must pay taxes, brokerage fees, etc, before the money can be released.”
  3. Free gift pitch: “You have won a prize, but in order to claim it, you must purchase another product” (usually poor quality and overpriced).

If you have really won a prize, it doesn’t cost you a dime, nor do you have to purchase a product to claim a prize. 

Victim Assistance: If you are a victim of fraud or any other crime, contact the Altona Police Service at 204-324-5353. 

The Internet

A guide for parents and children:

The Internet has many benefits, but it also has a negative side. Specifically, there is the potential for dangerous situations in which children may be exploited or victimized. To make the Internet as safe as possible, the community and police must work together. 

Do you plan on subscribing to an Internet service? Is your school or home already online? Make your family’s online experience as safe as possible by learning about the benefits and risks of the Internet, and by monitoring your children’s online activity. 

Children as young as age two play computer games or send e-mail messages to grandparents. At that age, they are probably sitting on a parent’s lap. Whenever children access the Internet, parent and teacher involvement is critical. Just like the real world, the Internet has many positive experiences to offer. But also like the real world, there are risks and safety concerns, especially for children. But by age eight, they are often online on their own. They have learned to use the Internet for school projects and may be ‘surfing the Web. By age 12, they probably know more about the World Wide Web than their parents. They are confident and curious and may be interested in ‘chatting’ online. By age 15, many teenagers are extremely sophisticated in their Internet use. They are still curious, but also adventurous, anxious to be independent, and sometimes rebellious. You probably know the advantages of providing children with Internet access. It’s a learning tool. It’s a research and exploration tool. It’s a communication tool. It’s an entertainment source. It’s available 24 hours a day, every day. But are you aware of the risks? Many Web sites have inappropriate or offensive content, such as sexually explicit text, pictures, products and services; violent or degrading text and pictures or hate-laced material directed at religions, races or nationalities. Chat rooms let you carry on a live online conversation with people across the street or around the world. Some chat rooms involve general conversation, while others focus on a particular topic. Some topics may be offensive or inappropriate for children. News groups, sometimes called bulletin boards or forums, are places where you can read or post messages and download or upload files. They feature a wide variety of topics, some of which are not appropriate for children or teens. When users post something on a bulletin board they are making their e-mail address public. E-mail, chat rooms and bulletin boards all provide young people with an opportunity to send or receive inappropriate messages. Sending inappropriate messages over and over again is sometimes called electronic harassment.

Internet Fraud

If you believe an adult has attempted to arrange a meeting with your child, or if anyone in your family is the victim of Internet fraud or electronic harassment, contact the Altona Police Service at 204-324-5353. Adults and children alike can fall victim to age-old scams adapted to the Internet, such as: 

  • Chain letters and pyramid schemes that require an investment. 
  • Purchases that never arrive or are of lower quality than promised, 
  • Money-making schemes and misrepresented business opportunities, 

Financial transactions are not always confidential. Online shopping is becoming popular, and many online commerce sites are blatantly directed at children. Transactions are not always confidential. That means a third party could pick up personal information sent over the Web, such as a credit card number.

Tips for Parents

  • Learn the basics of computer and Internet use. Talk to your children. Set rules and make sure they know what you consider off limits or inappropriate.
  • Put the computer in a common room so you can monitor how long your children are online and what they are viewing.
  • Explain the importance of not giving out any personal or financial information online.
  • Set time limits to help children stay focused on their original task and deter them from aimless surfing and chatting.
  • Take time to explore the Web with your children. Ask them to show you the activities they enjoy.
  • Ask your children to tell you if they receive anything that makes them uncomfortable. Tell them not to respond to obnoxious, sexual or menacing e-mail.
  • Report all electronic harassment to your Internet provider.
  • Watch for warning signs such as children creating passwords, hiding files, using the Internet excessively, creating multiple e-mail accounts or deleting history files.
  • Ask your children about the people they are meeting in chat rooms.
  • Be cautious if a child wants to meet an online friend in person. If you allow it, the meeting should take place in a busy, public place, and you should accompany your child.
  • Consider using blocking or filtering software. Talk to a computer retailer or Internet specialist about software options.

Safety Tips for Kids

  • Remember, there is no way to know if an online ‘friend’ is really who they say they are.
  • Never agree to meet someone you know only through the Internet, unless you have your parent’s approval. Take an adult along and meet in a busy, public place.
  • Never make purchases or place orders over the Internet without your parent’s approval. Never give out personal information such as your last name, address, telephone number, password, parent’s credit card number, parent’s work address or telephone number, the name and location of your school, or the name of your sports team.
  • Never send your picture or anything else to an online ‘friend’ without your parent’s approval.
  • Never respond to messages that are mean or make you feel uncomfortable. Tell your parents immediately.
  • Never use bad language on the Internet and never send mean messages.