The Brookhaven College Police sponsor several crime prevention programs throughout the year that utilize various community organizations. The programs touch on topics of personal safety and theft prevention.
We also offer SHARP, Sexual Harassment and Rape Prevention training. SHARP is a comprehensive course that begins with awareness, prevention risk reduction and avoidance then progresses into hands-on defense training. Certified SHARP instructors will teach the courses provided.
Tip: The Brookhaven College Police Department is available for an escort should you ever feel unsafe to walk alone. Walking with friends after an evening class is also encouraged to practice personal safety.
Not all stolen cars are stripped for parts. Many are resold to unknowing and unsuspecting buyers. If you knowingly buy a stolen car, you can be arrested. If you buy a stolen car unknowingly, you could lose the car and your money. Avoid becoming the car thief’s second victim by following these tips.
Be suspicious of any deal that seems “too good to be true.”
When buying from a private individual, make sure the title and registration match the name and address of the person selling the car.
Be cautious of a seller with no fixed address, place of employment, or phone number.
Ask the seller for references about past financing and insurance on the vehicle. Verify the information with the bank, finance company, or agent.
Ensure the Vehicle Information Number plate on the automobile’s dash is present, secure, and has no loose rivets.
Check to ensure the VIN plate has not been repainted and the numbers stamped in the plate appear to be the original factory numbers.
Ensure the VIN plate rivets are original. All 1970 and newer autos produced in North America have stainless steel “rosette” rivets with six petals and a hole in the middle. They are difficult to scratch with a knife.
Thieves may remove the VIN plate and replace it with one from a similar wrecked vehicle. If in doubt about plate authenticity, check with a new car dealer who handles the same model, or contact a law enforcement agency.
The VIN on the dash must match the VIN on the registration, title, and federal safety inspection sticker on the driver’s door.
If the VIN plate is scratched, bent or missing rivets, tampering may have occurred.
Make sure the federal safety inspection sticker, located on the driver’s door or door jamb, is securely in place and none of the numbers appear to be tampered with.
Beware of a loose dashboard.
An excessively loose ignition switch may indicate tampering. Check the switch for chisel or pull marks.
Be wary of a fresh paint job on a newer vehicle. This may indicate an attempt to change the car’s identity.
Check the inspection and license plate stickers to be sure they are current and issued by the same state.
If the seller provides you with only re-made keys, not original manufacturer’s keys, for a newer model, be suspicious.
Titles and registrations are frequently counterfeited. Therefore, demand the title before paying, and make sure it matches the registration. By completing all paperwork at the time of sale, you avoid giving the thief extra time to obtain fraudulent documents.
Question the seller if the registration was recently issued on an older vehicle.
Compare the engine identification numbers with all other numbers to ensure a match.
Be cautious of new license plates on an old car, or new plate bolts on an older plate.
These tips are from the pamphlet “Protecting Your Privacy, Keeping an Eye on Your Private Information,” that is distributed by the National Crime Prevention Council, 1700 K Street, NW, Second Floor, Washington, DC 20006-3817. See www.WePrevent.org, the Bureau of Justice Assistance Office of Justice Programs U.S. Department of Justice and ADT Security Services.
Whether you are on the Internet or an online banking program, you are often required to use a password. The worst passwords to use are the ones that come to mind first–name, spouse’s name, maiden name, pets, children’s names, even street addresses, etc. The best passwords mix numbers with upper and lowercase letters. A password that is not found in a dictionary is even better. There are programs that will try every word in the dictionary in an effort to crack your security.
The weakest link in a security system is the human element. The fewer people who have access to your codes and passwords the better. Avoid breaks in your security by:
Ordering merchandise from the Internet is the trend of the future. You can prevent problems before they occur by:
Protect Your Personal Identification Number (PIN)Your PIN should be memorized, secured, and not given to anyone, not even family members or bank employees. The fewer people who have access to your PIN, the better.Never write your PIN on ATM or long distance calling cards. Don’t write your PIN on a piece of paper and place it in your wallet. If your wallet and card are lost or stolen, someone will have everything they need to remove funds from your account, make unauthorized debit purchases, or run up your long distance phone bill.
Protect Your PrivacyBe aware of others waiting behind you. Position yourself in front of the ATM keyboard or phone to prevent anyone from observing your PIN.
Protect Your ATM CardsAn ATM card should be treated as though it were cash. Avoid providing card and account information to anyone over the telephone.When making a cash withdrawal at an ATM, immediately remove the cash as soon as the machine releases it. Put the cash in your pocket and wait until you are in a secure location before counting it. Never use an ATM in an isolated area or where people are loitering.Be sure to take your receipt to record transactions and match them against monthly statements. Dishonest people can use the receipt to get your account number. Never leave the receipt at the site.
Protect Your Credit CardsOnly give your credit card account number to make a purchase or reservation you have initiated. And never give this information over a cellular telephone.Never give your credit card account number to someone else to use on your behalf.Watch your credit card after giving it to store clerks to protect against extra imprints being made.Destroy any carbons. Do not discard into the trash can at the purchase counter. Keep charge slips in a safe place.Protect your purse or wallet, especially when travelling or in crowded situations.Save all receipts, and compare them to your monthly statement. Report any discrepancies immediately!Keep a master list in a secure place at home with all account numbers and phone numbers for reporting lost or stolen cards.