Know the Threats to Your Personal Security
You never know where the danger lurks and therefore every self defence class will teach you to be alert no matter if you’re at home or an unfamiliar place. This doesn’t mean that you have to be suspicious of everyone and everything but it is important to be aware that criminals usually don’t look like criminals. Also, you are recommended to be especially careful in situations/places that may pose threat to your personal safety.
On the Street
If possible, avoid walking alone at night, especially in dark and empty streets. Also, stay away from places that are potentially unsafe. If you do have to walk alone at night, choose a route where there is lots of people even if it means walking longer. If you by any chance find yourself in a potentially unsafe neighbourhood, walk with confidence but be alert.
You are highly unlikely to be physically assaulted in crowded areas but keep in mind that pickpockets are everywhere. So carry your purse close to your body and try to keep a distance from other people.
On the Road
Don’t pick up hitch-hikers and don’t hitch-hike yourself because you never know who will pull over. You are also recommended not to pull over to anyone outside populated areas even if they look like they need help. You probably think it is unacceptable not to stop to see what is going on but it is important to be aware that it can also be just a trick. Also, nowadays just about everyone has a mobile phone to be able to call for help if they need it. This doesn’t mean, however, you shouldn’t do anything if you see a person who appears to need help. But instead of pulling over, drive to the nearest petrol pump or police station and tell them that there is someone on the road who needs help.
You’re safe at home, right? Yes, you probably are but you are highly recommended to keep your doors locked even when you’re at home. Also, don’t let strangers into your home. The same counts for people who make you feel uncomfortable for one reason or the other. The statistics show that victims of violent crimes most often know their attackers.
Travelling is fun but it is highly important to be aware that it also posses an increased risk to your personal security, especially if you’re travelling to exotic destinations. Most locals don’t mean harm and are very hospitable, however, many also think that Western travellers have lots of money and won’t hesitate to take advantage of the opportunity to rob you.
On the World Wide Web
When chatting with your online friends, don’t reveal any personal information such as your real name and surname, where you live (it is OK to say that you’re from London for instance but most certainly not from which street) or where you work/go to school because your friend may not be who he or she claims to be. Also, if you plan to meet your online friend in person, choose a populated place.