With the economic turn down many Black Economy workers will have no jobs and with no financial support from the Government some may turn to crime to feed themselves and their families. This advice is to help insure you do not become a victim of petty crime.PickpocketsAt this time of year open air markets and supermarkets become very busy and are a happy hunting ground for expert pickpockets.1. Most importantly remember IF YOU DO NOT NEED IT DO NOT TAKE IT WITH YOU. This includes excess cash, credit and bankcards and passports.2. MEN, ALWAYS carry your wallet in a front pocket which preferably should be fastened with a button or zip.3. LADIES if you must use a handbag carry it to the front, ALWAYS keep it zipped shut, NEVER leave it in a shopping trolley.Cash Safety1. DO NOT take out more cash than you are likely to need.2. If you do require a large amount of cash DO NOT make it obvious, for example by opening your purse or wallet with the notes in sight.Cash Dispensers1. Distraction Thefts. Beware of strangers approaching you and asking your advice or pointing out a low value note on the floor.2. Ensure you are not overlooked when entering your PIN numbers.3. MOST IMPORTANTLY, if you feel uneasy cancel the transaction and go elsewhere.Car SafetyChristmas is getting close so let’s not make it a happy one for thieves, make sure you:1. Put all shopping in your car boot, do not leave it on view on car seats.2. When unloading, lock your car between each load, do not leave the boot open.3. If approached when in your car immediately operate the central locking and either, move off or speak through a partially open window, if you are worried sound your horn.4. Ladies, do not drive with your handbag on the front passenger seat, conceal it elsewhere.Home Security1. Ensure your alarm is working and ALWAYS set it when leaving your home.2. Keep your windows and doors locked at night and when the house is unoccupied.3. Keep your garden and your community gate locked.4. If going out for the evening leave one or two downstairs lights on that can be seen from outside the property and consider fitting a timer switch to a lamp.Despite the sensationalistic reporting by some TV programmes and newspapers you are much less likely to be a victim of crime here in Spain than in most other European counties. Remember most thieves are opportunist, they are always on the look out for easy pickings, following these simple rules will make their life more difficult and you and your home safer. Have a happy and safe Christmas.