WBRE TV NEWSMAKERS
TO AIR SUNDAY, JANUARY 20TH
Repeated: January 27th at 5:30 a.m.
The World of a Private Investigator
The very interesting world of a Private Investigator is the focus of this Sunday’s WBRE-TV Newsmakers with Senior Producer Jayne Ann Bugda and Anchorman Andy Mehalshick.
Just about everyone is fascinated with the work of a private investigator. There are countless books, movies and TV Characters based on them. Gary Willsch of “Shadow Investigations, Inc” will join Jayne Ann and Andy. Willsch will talk about the history of private investigation, the training needed, and cases they are called upon to look into. Willsch will give the viewers a glimpse into his world and work.
Willsch will also give some advice on how to protect yourself from Identity Theft and Burglary.
WBRE-TV Newsmakers will air Sunday, January 20th at and and will repeat on Sunday, January 27th at
Willsch Can Be Reached by calling: Toll Free (877) 629-0008
Check out his website at http://www.theshadowpi.com
HOW TO PREVENT IDENTITY THEFT
Tips from Gary Willsch, Shadow Investigations
After working a long hard day, you return home. The first thing you do is begin to go through the mail. You see an envelope that catches your eye and you immediately open it. To your surprise it is a judgment letter stating that you owe $ 25,000 for a credit card you never had. You begin to think that this is just a mistake and phone the credit card company. To your surprise, this is not a mistake! Someone has stolen your identity and obtained a credit card in your name. Identity theft has become the fastest growing crime cost billions of dollars. Do not fall a victim to this crime. Follow these simple steps:
- Get a mail box which locks or obtain a post office box
- Do not carry your social security card with you
- Purchase a shredder which cross cuts and shreds all documents that contain your personal information. Do not rip it in half
- Obtain your credit report every three months. This report will tip you off if anyone has obtained credit in your name, because there will be activity that you will not recognize
- Carefully review all bills that come to you. Be sure that you were the one that made the purchase
- Do not leave your registration or insurance card in the glove compartment of your vehicle
- When making a purchase take all receipts with you. Do not leave them in the store. If you do not need the receipt then shred it, upon arriving at home. Never throw anything in public receptacles that could identify you
- If you do not receive your mail for two days, contact your post office to ensure that a change of address has not been completed
- When paying by check do not write your driver’s license number or social security number on the check
- Never have checks mailed to you; pick them up at the bank. A check box is very distinctive
- Have an unlisted phone number
- Do not use professional qualifications (i.e. Dr., Esq., etc.)
- Never carry PIN or passwords on you. Have a PIN or password which no one can decipher. Stay away from birth dates, last four digits of your social security number, names, etc.
- Leave a very generic answering machine message. Never state your phone number or name on an answering machine.
- Do not release any personal information over the telephone or internet to someone whom you have not verified. Watch those chat rooms and emails
- Pay attention to billing cycles. Follow up with creditors if your bills do not arrive on time. Ensure that a change of address has not been completed
- Keep personal information in a safe place. Roommates and outside help should not be able to obtain this information. Best location is a safe deposit box
- Find out who maintains your employment records and ensure that they follow strict guidelines in releasing any information
- When completing a transaction (ATM, calling card) in a public place, ensure that no one is looking over your shoulder. Some thieves will use binoculars or camcorders to look over your shoulder and obtain personal information
- If paying by credit card, never allow the credit card to leave your sight
- Never store personal information in your computer, PDA, purse or wallet
HOW TO PREVENT A BURGLARY
After spending a pleasant evening out with friends or upon returning from the vacation about which you always dreamed, you find your home in disarray. Some one broke in and stole everything possible; or worse yet, it is 3:00 AM and you hear someone in your house walking around. The following list is to protect you from being a victim of a burglary.
- Place lights on the exterior of the house. Place the lights out of reach
- Have all exterior lights controlled by a switch that is inside the house
- Have solid doors (steel storm door) with strong frames and locks (dead bolts with a one inch throw). If a burglar wants to break in through a door, make it extremely time consuming. Some burglars with just attempt to kick the door in
- Landscape properly around your house. Have no trees that lead to the second floor. No shrubs which can hide a person or obstruct your view. Plant rose bushes under windows
- Sleep with a cell phone. If someone cuts your phone line you will still be able to make a phone call
- Keep a flashlight by your bed. Check the batteries regularly.
- Place a “beware of dog” sign on your door or fence even if you do not have a dog. This will present a visual deterrent
- Install a dog house and bowl in your backyard. If you do not have a dog, it is a great deterrent
- Do not leave anything in your yard which can be used to break in (i.e. tools, ladder, etc.)
- When you go to bed at night, double check all windows and doors to ensure that they are locked
- Always close and lock your garage door. If they see no car, they know you are not at home
- If you go away for a few days, unplug your garage door opener
- When away, have neighbors park their vehicles in your driveway. It will appear as though you have company.
- Have someone pick up all mail and newspaper deliveries. Do not stop mail or paper deliveries because unscrupulous employees at those locations might forward your information to burglars for a finder’s fee
- Know your travel agent. They could also have unscrupulous employees that sell your vacation itinerary to burglars for a finder’s fee
- If away, make sure the house looks exactly like it would if you were at home (i.e. blinds open during day, but closed at night; lights which normally would be on; vehicles in driveway, etc.)
- Have a good alarm system. Have the system cover the garage and second floor, when your away
- Do not hide a spare key outside of the house any place. The burglar knows where to look. Instead, exchange keys with your neighbors
- Place an automatic timer on the TV and place a bowl of popcorn or potato chips with a can of soda on the coffee table. If someone looks in, they will note this and think that you just walked away
- Put a talk radio station on. Have it loud enough so that someone standing outside can hear it; but can not understand what is being said
- Place trash in the exterior trash can. No trash means no one is home
- Have someone curb your trash, when your away
- Place alarm stickers on doors and windows even if you do not have an alarm
- If you have repairmen come into your home, watch everything that they do. Remember an alarm pin or motion detector can be bypassed in 8 seconds
- Do not open the door for anyone whom you do not know
- Always keep your doors locked. Lock the door every time you leave the house
- Leave a very generic answering machine message. Never state your phone number or name on an answering machine. If someone is home alone (feeling suspicious), as they answer the phone, have them loudly say, “I’ve got it.”
- Try to vary your routine. This is sometimes very difficult to do, but this will keep a burglar guessing
- Have interior lights come on, but do not have them come on at the same time every day. Buy timers that allow you to program different days and times
- Keep valuables out of sight. Look into your window from the outside. If it looks too inviting then move or hide some of your items
- If you are selling your home, be careful about who comes to your home. Only allow the party to enter with your agent. Be sure to follow them throughout the house. Double check all windows, doors and the alarm system once they leave. Remember an alarm pin or motion detector can be bypassed in 8 seconds
- Have someone house sit when you are attending a function which mentions your name and the time of the event in the media. Burglars know how to read.
- If you have sliding glass doors, place a piece of wood that is the full length in the bottom of the frame
- Be alert when entering or leaving your home
- Observe activity outside your home. Be a concerned neighbor
- Do not leave keys in plain view within your home. If someone looks in your window or door and sees keys they are more inclined to take them. This way when they return, they simply unlock the door and enter. If the police are called they will show them that they have keys. You will more then likely think that you misplaced them rather then had then taken.