At LY Detectives Agency Private Investigators In Kenya, We take time to advice the general public this festive season on basic security measures to take.
The holidays are a joyful time of the year, but it is also a peak time for criminal activity. Criminals take advantage of the seasonal chaos and people’s giving nature by committing some of the worst crimes imaginable. Even though police are on alert this time of year, criminals always find a way to ruin the holidays for somebody. Here are some of the most common holiday crimes:
Car Hire Scams are very common during the December Holidays. It is peak time for those genuinely renting out vehicles. It is also peak time for the scammers who advertise that they have very affordable, well maintained vehicles for you to travel up-country with.
This scam starts with a simple call to the “provider” who has advertised on popular sites like Google ads, pigiame.co.ke or jiji.co.ke. They first tell you how they have many vehicles lined up and mention them. The next step is for them to prey on your desperation and urgency. The vehicle can be brought to where you are within the next few minutes but you either have to book with half the price for the duration or you send a certain amount for fuel. They do not give an option for you to go pick the car. They can also decide to waste your time with phony locations.
These are guys who do not need to steal much from one individual, some just want the USD.10-30 for fuel then turn off their phones with the hope that the amount was too little for you to follow up on. Their target is mostly between 5-10 victims a day for the season.
They also prey on naïve and desperate people who are easily lured by deals that seem too good to be true.
Action: Do thorough research on a particular deal or offer before giving any money or personal information to anyone or any site. It is also important for you to go physically to their yard and get the car or wait for then to arrive then make payments.
This can come in two ways; 1. Vehicle Burglary or 2. The car itself.
If you decide to rent out your car this season, it is important to take the following precautions:
- Always try as much as possible to get correct details about the person
- Have at least two tracking devices on the vehicle
- Create a check-in for all your vehicles. This you do by agreeing with the person to call in at specific times and tell you where they are for the hire period. The locations given can be counter-checked with both trackers.
Vehicle burglaries are a problem all year long, but it is far worse around the holidays. Thieves know that shoppers leave expensive gifts in the car and that they could be gone for hours. It doesn’t take much for criminals to see what’s inside your car and figure out a way to steal your valuables. The good news is drivers can prevent auto burglaries by taking some simple, but effective preventative steps, such as locking the doors, hiding your valuables, and taking the keys with you.
The holidays are a time for fun and celebration, but they are unfortunately one of most dangerous times to be on the road. Drunk driving is extremely common this time of year and fatalities related to alcohol-impaired driving has risen since 2018.
Action: Be extra careful on the roads this season.
Domestic violence is a growing problem during the holidays, and experts believe it increased with the stress of gift giving, celebrations, and the close proximity to family. Alcohol and drugs only add to the problem and put more people in danger. The holidays have a tendency to trigger family tension, drug use, and financial woes, causing people to act out in violent and destructive ways.
Action:There is literally no documented solution as to the above.
Shoplifting is one of the most common crimes committed during the holidays. With shopping at an all-time high during Christmas, shoplifters have more opportunities to take advantage of the large crowds and distracted workers.
Action: Ensure your supermarket staff is vigilant and your devices like cctv and RFID works and are not there just for show.
Did you know that the app you download on your phone can be used by criminals to commit identity theft? Food for thought…
Identity theft is a risk for virtually everyone not just during the holidays. Thieves are online and offline, waiting to steal your personal information, credit card number, and Social Security number, and use it to commit crimes. Thieves can steal your identity in various ways, such as skimming, phishing, pretexting, and old-fashioned stealing. As common as identity theft is during the holidays, there are many ways to protect yourself and your finances from being compromised, such as reviewing your monthly statements, balancing your checkbook, reviewing your credit reports, and securing your personal information.
The holidays are a hot time for robberies because of the increased cash volume and the distractions of crowds. Robbers are well aware of the fact that people carry more money on them during the holidays and they will go to great lengths to try to steal from people on the street, in parking lots, and other public places. People have turned to crime to solve their financial problems and see robbery as one of the quickest ways to do that.
Reports of rape and sexual assault increase around Christmastime. This is most likely due to the increase of parties and alcohol consumption that takes place during this time of year. Women who engage in heavy drinking have a greater risk of becoming a victim of rape or sexual assault. When alcohol or drugs are involved, people’s judgment becomes impaired and they may find themselves in more dangerous situations than when they are sober.
Now that you have travelled upcountry for the holidays, how safe is your city house???
Home burglary is a concern any time of the year, but it’s especially bad during the holidays. Burglars tend to break into homes that are easy to access and they usually steal items that they can quickly and inconspicuously carry, such as laptops, electronics, jewelry, and cash. The risk of being burglarized is always there, but homeowners can take effective measures to protect their house and belongings.
Every year, unsuspecting shoppers get duped into buying counterfeit merchandise that they think are genuine. Counterfeiters profit from tricking consumers into buying knock-off items and illegally downloading music, movies, and television shows. Not only do these criminals steal from consumers, but they also cost legitimate companies a great deal of money. Counterfeiters often use these profits to fund other illegal activities.
LY Detectives Agency is a private investigations firm operating in Kenya, East and Central Africa.