Sheriff: Don’t advertise your vacation
Living in Wisconsin is truly a unique experience. We are able to appreciate each season for the beauty it brings along with its challenges. For those who enjoy winter sports, this winter has not necessarily cooperated. Many have taken to travel to warmer destinations for their recreation. It seems you can’t have a conversation or visit social media without seeing someone who has just returned or is just heading off for their winter getaway.
I thought a short message on home security would be in order. While we are fortunate to live in a community where we do not need to bar our windows, or gate our yards for fear of intrusion, we should be aware that crime does occur in Kewaunee County.
We should always be vigilant in regard to securing our homes and being observant of what goes on in our neighborhoods. If you are planning on taking a vacation, whether it be for a weekend or the whole season, there are some basic tips to follow. Don’t advertise the fact that you will be gone from your home. I know it is tempting to tell everyone on Facebook about your pending trip, or to send photos from that gorgeous beach, but be aware that you might not know all who are reading that post. If you are going to the bank, or grocery store, again, don’t advertise that you will be gone, just in case someone is listening. Some people you should tell are your neighbors, so that they may be extra watchful of your property, as well as law enforcement.
Many people don’t realize you can notify law enforcement that you will be away, and request extra patrol during that time. While the officers are always looking for suspicious activity, knowing the home should be vacant might be good information if something is out of place. Always make sure you either have someone pick up your mail, or have the post office hold it until you return. The same goes for newspaper delivery. Nothing yells vacant home louder than a stack of papers on the front porch. Also, if you will be gone during the winter months, make arrangements for your driveway and sidewalks to be cleared, again this maintains the appearance that the residence is occupied.
It is a good idea to let your financial institutions know where you are going and advise them that they might start to see transactions in a different location than where you usually are, or where you will be during your trip. Also, when you return it might be worth your time to check your transactions just to make sure that your credit card or its information haven’t been on its own adventure without you.
If you are vacationing this winter season, I hope your travels are safe and you find warmer temperatures.
Matt Joski is sheriff of Kewaunee County.
This article originally appeared on Green Bay Press-Gazette: Sheriff: Don't advertise your vacation