Stay Safe & Secure This Christmas

Members of the public are being reminded to keep themselves and their property safe in the run up to Christmas.

Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council's Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP) has issued a warning to raise awareness and stop crime in its tracks, particularly with regard to scams while shopping online.

Local residents are encouraged to set up Neighbourhood Watch Schemes and heed crime prevention advice on burglary, scamming messages and drink driving.

People should remember that financial institutions, utility companies, law enforcement, HMRC, internet and telecoms providers and other public bodies will never ask for personal account details that they already possess. If contacted, you should terminate the telephone call and ring the organisation on the number you already have.

The following four step scam test can help you stay ahead:

• Seems too good to be true

• Contacted out of the blue

• Asked for personal details

• Money is requested

The PCSP is also supporting the PSNI message to "Never, Ever, drink and drive". If you are going out to enjoy the festive period it is best to plan ahead by nominating a non-drinker as the designated driver or book a taxi in advance. Don't forget about your journey to work the next morning, particularly if there is a chance you could be over the limit.
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The Chairman of Lisburn & Castlereagh PCSP, Councillor Andrew Ewing commented: "We cannot remind people enough of the importance of looking after themselves and their belongings, particularly at Christmas when there are gifts bought to give to friends and family. Please ensure that they are out of sight and not placed below Christmas trees, visible from outside your home. Unfortunately there are criminals who will invade your home and steal your personal belongings. My message to you is clear; make sure you do not invite burglars into your home by not securing your home properly and stay ahead of scams by remembering the 4 step test. May I wish all the citizens of Lisburn & Castlereagh a safe and peaceful Christmas and New Year."

Superintendent Davy Beck, District Commander for Lisburn & Castlereagh added: "Over the next few weeks Officers will be working hard right across Lisburn and Castlereagh District as part of 'Operation Seasons Greetings' to help ensure you have a safe Christmas. This operation brings together police officers from departments across the service to provide visible and accessible policing for local communities, businesses and those who are out and about shopping and enjoying the festive period.

"We will be conducting preventative patrols across the District, liaising with local communities and working with businesses to provide increased visibility, crime prevention advice and of course conducting our daily business of tackling crime.

"You can really help us during this busy period. Please follow our crime prevention advice to protect yourself, your home and your property; be safe and careful on our roads; don't drink and drive; look out for older people and the more vulnerable in your local community and report any suspicious activity to us on 101 or 999 in an emergency."


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