C – Personal Safety


  1. Be unpredictable, vary your route to and from work, use different routes and distances, avoid routines (same time and location every day) for shopping, lunch, exercising, etc.
  2. Do not divulge family or personal information to strangers, or passing acquaintances.
  3. Maintain a low profile, don’t stand out, shun publicity and attracting attention. Dress and behave in a matter consistent with the local customs/environment.
  4. Dress so that you don’t look like an easy victim. Criminals look for people who will be easy to overtake. Things like ponytails and buns, long braids and necklaces are good for holding onto or wrapping around a victim’s neck so that they cannot get away or fight back. Wear long ponytails or braids under hats or jackets, and tuck long scarves and necklaces inside clothing for safety’s sake. Avoid clothes that you can’t run or move well in such as spiked heels, tight, long dresses, etc.
  5. 3“Blessed are the poor in spirit,
    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 6Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 7Blessed are the merciful,
    for they will be shown mercy.
    8Blessed are the pure in heart,
    for they will see God. 9Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God 10Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

    Matthew 5:3 NIV The Beatitudes

    Do not flash large sums of money, expensive jewellery, or luxury items, don’t count your money in a public place, don’t advertise your belongings, take only what you may need with you.

  1. Be alert to surveillance attempts, or suspicious persons/activities, e.g. cars parked repeatedly in your area, unknown persons loitering
  2. Keep your personal distance from strangers. Maintain a safe distance from people to give yourself time to react or avoid an attack.
  3. Don’t have your hands filled up with packages, always try to keep at least one hand free.
  4. Hide your keypad whenever entering a code (e.g. ATM, supermarket, restaurant, etc.) and watch closely waiters, sales clerks, or gas station attendants and always try to keep your credit/bank card in sight while paying.
  5. Watch for unexplained absences of locals in usually busy areas as an early warning sign of possible crime.
  6. Avoid public disputes, arguments or confrontations and crowds – don’t get involved in other people’s problems and fights.
  7. Don’t be idle, move around – targets are easiest located when stationary.
  8. Trust your instincts, if something tells you to be cautions, trust your gut, don’t force yourself to be in situations where you don’t feel comfortable.
  9. Keep your items secure inside and know what you are carrying and check purse and content of pockets often.
  10. Hold handbags with strap over your shoulder and to the front and control movement with one hand
  11. Keep all bags and pockets always closed and zippered
  12. Always have a cell phone on you with enough money to make emergency calls
  13. Keep numbers you need handy, emergencies (ICE) lawyer/legal aid, police station,
  14. Keep some cash, old cards etc. in give/throw away wallet, throw away cell, in case of a mugging/robbery
  15. If robbed/held up, don’t hand valuables over in the hand of criminal, throw down/away from the robber and run, if possible.
  16. DO NOT FIGHT OR ARGUE with a robber for your money, it’s not worth risking death or serious injury. A robber has no time for pleas and just wants to get what you have quickly and get away without attracting attention, don’t hold him back or you risk getting hurt/stabbed/shot.
  17. If you can, attract attention, scream for help, shout, break down, fake a heart attack, fake vomiting or an asthma attack, anything which will cause the robber/mugger/rapist to lose time and risk detection.
  18. Get into the habit of “checking in” to let family and friends know where you are and when to expect you
  19. Know safe locations where you can find refuge or assistance, e.g. friends, shops, police
  20. Set up simple signal systems that can alert family members or associates that there is danger, e.g. on the phone, while out, in the home
  21. Wear sensible shoes / clothes in which you can run, fight if you have to.
  22. Yelling “fire” or “call 999” or even shouting a description of the attacker brings assistance faster than a call of “help” or “rape.”
  23. When travelling by plane/train/bus, use covered luggage tags and consider using a work address instead of your home address.
  24. “Love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get?”

    Matthew 5:44 NIV

    Don’t discuss holiday plans or other domestic arrangements in public places where you can be overheard.

  1. Don’t carry any personal documents, e.g. envelopes with name/address, bank cards, checks, invoices, so others can see the details, e.g. when you wait in line at the bank.

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