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Coat pockets, handbags, and hip pockets are particularly susceptible to theft. Thieves will use all kinds of ploys to divert your attention just long enough to pick your pocket and grab your purse or wallet. These ploys include creating a disturbance, spilling something on your clothing, or even handing you a baby to hold!
Prevent theft by carrying your belongings in a secure manner. Consider not carrying a purse or wallet when going on crowded streets. Women who carry a shoulder bag should keep it tucked under the arm and held securely by the strap. Men should put their wallets in their front trouser pockets or use money belts instead of hip pockets. A wallet wrapped in rubber bands is more difficult to remove undetected.
Be especially cautious in a large crowd--in the subway, marketplace, at a festival, or if surrounded by groups of vagrant children. Do not make it easy for thieves!
Excerpted from:U. S. Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs. U. S. State Department Publication 9926. February, 1992. pgs. 24-25. Note: As of July, 1997 this was the latest non-internet-published U.S. State Department document pertaining to this topic.
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