The reality is that shopping centres, and especially the outlying parking lots and hubs like taxi ranks, are targeted by scoundrels looking to make a quick buck during peak shopping hours. Residents and tourists are warned to be vigilant and to keep a close eye on their valuables when going shopping:

  • Never hang your handbag on the shopping trolley as criminals can slip it off while you’re browsing the shelves.
  • Do not put your belongings in the trolley, as many people focus on the shopping bags and forget wallets and phones.
  • If you go shopping early evening or even eat out after dark, park close to your intended destination and near a light. This will make criminals more wary of being spotted.
  • Remember to lock the doors and double check that they have locked when driving or after getting out of the car. Remote-control scams are still a favourite of criminals. They can block the signal of your remote control, which means the alarms lights may flash or you may hear a beep, but the locks don’t engage. Immediately contact a security guard, security company or the police if you suspect that someone is employing remote jamming.
  • There have been reports of people being caught off guard after drawing money at the ATM. Park as close as possible to the ATM. Do not accept help from strangers and report people exhibiting strange behaviour around ATMs, even if it is a security guard. Most supermarkets give you the option to draw money at till points, which is a much safer option these days.

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