JOPLIN, MO.--- You may be one of the many hitting the stores this Friday to catch a deal, and law enforcement officers have tips on how you can protect your purchases from theft.
Rebecca Smith was a victim of theft one too many times.
"I've had my purse stolen before, and there was one time I had my car stolen too," said Rebecca Smith, Black Friday Shopper.
She is prepared to protect her belongings when she heads out for deals this Black Friday.
"What I do is keep credit cards in my pocket, money in my pocket. I do not carry a purse," said Smith.
Joplin police say it's not only important to guard the personal items you bring into a store, but also pay attention to what you leave in your car.
"Criminals know these vehicles are going to be full of stuff at other businesses to steal," said Daniel Rogers, Joplin Police Officer.
If you have to go from one store to another, it's best to cover up what you bought.
"Hide them as best you can so that when you go into another store, again you're keeping criminals from wanting to break into your vehicle," said Rogers.
They say you can also prevent others from using your credit card.
"On the back where you are supposed to sign your name, put CID that way that anyone who runs your card has to ask for identification first," said Rogers.
Police also say if you go in groups, your less of a target for theft. Smith will be keeping these tips in mind when hitting the stores this Black Friday.
"I'm planning to go to Wal-Mart. I have one of their sales fliers and they have a Blueray player I want," said Smith.
If you are not going to fight the crowds on Black Friday and rather wait for deals on cyber Monday. Police say make sure you are using a reputable website to make your purchases.
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