Most criminals are opportunists and there are many common-sense measures we can all take to protect ourselves from them.

dc14981bbc1f1050709026885e84f33cBogus callers (Distraction Burglary or Burglary Artifice) tend to target elderly and/or vulnerable people, are often female, and come in many guises, such as fake utility providers or meter readers. Some ask for a glass of water, request money to visit a sick relative, need to use your phone or lavatory, or are selling or repairing things.

Fit a door chain and always use it when you open your door to unexpected callers, even during daylight hours

Never let strangers into your home without being sure that they are who they say they are. Always ask for identification and, if in doubt, leave the callers outside, close the door and telephone to confirm identities. Authentic callers will not object and it could save you from being robbed or duped.

Let your Safer Neighbourhood Team or neighbourhood Watch coordinator know if you suspect you’ve had a visit from a bogus caller.

9ed230c6d91266475dbd10484feb61f7Car Crime is prevalent in our area. Lock all doors when driving in slow-moving traffic, or when stationary at traffic lights and on garage forecourts.

Leave nothing on display when parked and ensure that all windows are closed. Car number plates are often stolen; our SNT can advise on where to obtain special screws to prevent this. Report all car crimes even if you are not claiming on insurance.

Burglary is also prevalent in our area. Lock all doors and windows whenever you go out. Do not leave keys near the front or back door; burglars “fish” for them through letterboxes. It is advisable to install letterbox guards and to have “sash guards” on ground floor windows. The SNT will advise on how to fit these.

Protect your mobile phone. Record the unique IMEI 15 digit number on your mobile – key in #06#. Keep the number safe.

Street crime. Be aware of who is around you. Snatch crimes are often committed by thieves on bicycles. When walking, carry only the cash and cards that you need. Do not advertise your mobile phone – this applies especially to young people who are the largest single group of victims of street crime

Taking these simple, common-sense measures can protect us all and keep Southfield Ward one of the safest in Ealing.

For further information contact Colin Bastin here .