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Beware Of The Pick Pockets


Beware Of The Pick Pockets

Summer is the time when we all come out of hibernation and enjoy the sun. Subsequently, carnivals from the tall ships festival to music festivals fill out our weekend schedule. It is prudent to remember that it may be a busy time for you but it’s also a busier time for pick pockets. They love crowds and they love to operate and blend into those crowds.
A couple of years ago I was shopping in town, and I had my hands full with bargains when I noticed a lady standing beside me, we briefly spoke when I went to pay for my bargains, my wallet was gone. I, at the time, used to carry all cash on me in a leather wallet. Though it was convenient, it also was my undoing. I only had about €40.00 in it but I also had cards and it caused me a great deal of stress. To compound my misfortune, the shop I was in was closing down the following day, their CCTV was not working!
I quickly went outside the shop and checked in o the nearby bins, as pick pocketers normally quickly empty the cash from the wallet or purse then get rid of the evidence, in case they get caught with it. As I searched through the bins I was dismayed it wasn’t there. Two Guards approached me and asked was there something wrong, I told them what happened and they went in to the shop and informed me they couldn’t get anything on the camera as they didn’t work. The lesson I learned that day was never to put all my eggs in the one basket. So if you’re going out to any festival or attending any public meetings etc here is some useful tips for you.
1. Always carry any cash you have in different pockets as if you where “dipped” (colloquialism for being pickpocketed) they will only get one pocket.
2. Carry your mobile phone separate or if you have a smart telephone, buy a cover and invest in a neck strap. Fix it to your mobile cover, as you will be able to put the cover in to a breast pocket and it will always be safe. You can pick up neck straps fairly cheap they are mostly under €5.00. You may get them in the discount stores.

3. Don’t ever carry chip and pin numbers in your wallet of any of your credit or store cards (it may seem obvious to some but it’s good to be clear).
4. Never take out bundles of cash this could attract pick pockets, or thieves who may not consider your safety. As the saying goes “opportunity makes the thief”.
5. If you are withdrawing any amount of cash from a saving account, ask the cashier to give you either smaller notes or to put the money into a roll and try not taking it out till you at home. It would be wise also if you had someone with you, pick pockets tend, like a lot of predators, fear groups.
6. Some thieves themselves, operate in groups for the sole purpose to pass the bags, purses, etc to a second or a third person, for the reason that if they get caught the bag, or purse may not be on them, and they may walk away.
7. If you have cash on you and you think you are been followed do not approach them. Do not lead yourself into a dark or low populated area, make your way to a nearest Garda Station, or stop a Garda on a street, or stop in a shop and ask the security for assistance. This will bring a swift end to their hunt.
8. The Luas tram is an ideal place for thieves to operate, as it’s always crowded on peak hours. If you are on the Luas, always place your hand bag in the middle of the seats, or in the middle of your lap, instead of the floor, as bags on the floor can be kicked away from the owners and picked up while people are getting off the tram. Also, if you choose to place the bag on your lap or the seat, make sure the front of the bag is facing you and it’s firmly closed.
9. If you are going in to a public park say for a musical event, try and not bring your jewellery with you, gold neck chains, bracelets etc can be pulled off a person, while they are moshing or dancing, lost in a few seconds of joy.
10. A new strategy for pickpockets is targeting the drunk. People who fall down when they are very drunk, a pickpocket will pretend to help them up. During this supposed aid they are actually patting the person down, if they feel any kind of lump, in their pockets they will mug them. This is known as “hug mugging”. To be honest, the only way to avoid this is quite clear, watch the drink!
Never panic, but always be cautious and remember that a shop or business will help you.

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