Eight Ways To Improve Your Personal Safety

According to a recent Gallup study, Americans are more fearful about their personal safety than they have been in three decades.

Personal Safety
Photo by Jackie Alexander on Unsplash

A whopping 40% are uneasy walking alone at night, even within a mile of their homes, and 37% worry about getting mugged. Meanwhile, identity theft is a major concern for 72%.

Of course, these are not the only threats keeping people up at night. Burglary, sexual assault, car theft, and hate crimes are among the common safety concerns weighing on Americans’ minds.

But constantly living in fear is neither productive nor good for your mental well-being. Improving your personal safety is a better solution that could help you ward off prevalent risks. Here’s what you should know.

1. Stay Alert

Remaining vigilant is critical for identifying shady actors and potential threats so you can remove yourself from such situations or take necessary measures to deter them quickly.

For instance, scan your surroundings when you’re using public transportation. Look around for any unusual devices or fixtures after getting into a cab. 

Avoid constantly checking your phone and other distractions that could prevent you from noticing vital signs of a safety hazard.

2. Display Confidence

A confident stride could deter many petty criminals. So, stay relaxed and walk tall with your head high. Don’t be reluctant to make eye contact with those around you. In addition, keep your hands free from phones, bags, and other items.

3. Plan Your Route

Before leaving home or work, get into the habit of planning your route.

  • To minimize reliance on strangers for directions, determine the exact locations of the places you need to visit. Install Google Maps or a similar navigation app to help you find your way.
  • Determine the optimum route to take and how you’ll get to your destination. Will you walk, use public transportation, take a taxi, drive, or use a combination of these?
  • Ignore shortcuts and stay on main roads that are busy and well-lit, especially when you need to travel in the evening or night.
  • If you must walk or use public transportation, dress comfortably so you can react or respond effectively to an emergency situation.

4. Safeguard Your Belongings

The fewer valuables you have with you, the safer you will be. Remember, expensive watches and jewelry could easily attract thieves and other criminals.

Even when you carry valuables in a bag, behavioral cues, such as how you hold the bag, could signal that you have cash or some other precious item. So, taking valuables is best avoided when you’re out and about on your own.

Use a credit card or digital wallet instead of taking large amounts of cash. If you carry a bag, opt for a cross-body one instead of a backpack. Keep it organized to prevent fumbling when taking out the phone, credit card, cash, or keys.

5. Travel Together

Having someone to accompany you is an excellent option to improve your personal safety. This is particularly important when you’re walking, taking public transportation, or traveling after hours.

Even carpooling or having a travel buddy while driving could help in unexpected situations that could threaten your safety.

6. Practice Caution When Meeting Strangers

Adequate precautions are critical when you’re engaging with unknown individuals. For instance, when getting something delivered to your home, meet the delivery person outside. If they must come in, ensure someone is at home for your safety.

If it involves an unexpected delivery, check who has arranged it and contact them to confirm the information. Look up the delivery person’s phone number on Nuwber to verify where they are employed.

Sometimes, you may have to interact with strangers in unfamiliar locations. For instance, you could meet with a new client at their office or go on a date with someone you have met online.

In such circumstances, spend adequate time to learn more about the relevant person. Use a public location with plenty of people around when you’re meeting after dark. Stick to the agreed schedule and avoid staying back late. In addition, let a close friend or coworker know who you’re meeting, when, and where.

7. Secure Your Home

Whether you’re leaving home or retiring for the day, ensuring that windows and doors are locked is a basic preventative measure you must take. Set up security cameras and an alarm system if you want to be extra careful.

A digital passcode-based lock for your front door is another solution to consider. It could allow you to easily change the security code if you suspect a breach while preventing threats arising from lost or stolen keys.

8. Protect Personal Information

When compromised, your personally identifiable information (PII) could make you a target for numerous identity theft-related threats.

PII can include your social security number, driver’s license, passport, bank statements, birth certificates, and similar documents. All these must be kept securely stored in a safe when not in use to prevent intrusions.

Considering the rise of digital risks, including phishing and impersonation scams, taking steps toward securing your digital data is also imperative.

For instance,

  • Protect your online accounts using password best practices.
  • Use multi-factor authentication and biometric verifiers to keep accounts and devices safe.
  • Install virus protection to prevent malware attacks.
  • Use a spam filter to identify and remove spam- and scam-related emails from your inbox.
  • Enable automatic updates for all your software.
  • Keep your smartphone, laptop, and other critical devices secure from theft and loss.
  • Stay clear of unverified websites, emails, and messages that could target you for phishing via malicious links and attachments.

Today, more Americans are concerned about their personal safety, both in the physical and digital worlds. The threats are very real, and minding your safety is crucial for minimizing potential risks.

By following the measures outlined in this article, you can mitigate or prevent many of the hazards. Carrying safety gear, such as a whistle or a personal alarm, and taking a few personal defense lessons won’t go to waste either.

Team JST

Team JST work with our sponsors, shop vendors, and many more to create informative and engaging content.

Jetset Times in your inbox

Sign-up for our newsletter

By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Policy and European users agree to the data transfer policy.