Florida sheriff's office offers Black Friday shopping tips

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Whether you are going out or staying in, make sure to protect yourself this Black Friday.

The Flagler County Sheriff's Office posted several Black Friday shopping tips on Twitter. 

They include the following:

10. The Flagler County Sheriff's Officer said to keep your purse and wallet on you as purse-snatchers and pickpockets could attempt to take unattended items. They also noted that it is easier to steal a wallet when it is one's back pocket.

9. They also said to shop on secure sites and before making any purchases, check that the website has a closed padlock in the browser bar or a URL that begins with 'https.'

8. Use only credit cards for online purchases. In fact, they advise you only use one card because if a card is compromised, you only have to cancel that one card.

7. Invest in home security, like cameras, to protect any online purchases that could come to your door. For example, cameras often serve as a deterrent against porch pirates.

6. The Flagler County Sheriff's Office said also to be careful of deals that sound too good to be true. They likely are. They advise you to check the source and clarify if the item is coming directly from a company or a third-party seller.

5. For those going out, they advise that you drive carefully and free from distractions, especially in busy parking lots. Have patience and be aware of your surroundings. Since school is out, be extra careful as well in residential neighborhoods.

4. If you decide to go shopping with your children this year, be sure to have a plan in case you get separated, they said. Select a central location that you can meet at and tell your children to ask a security guard or employee for help if they get lost.

3. The Sheriff's Office also advises that you park in a well-lit area and be aware of your surroundings when leaving and entering your vehicle. Always lock your doors and close your windows as well. 

2. When putting your shopping bags in your vehicle, store them out of sight, they said. Never leave them or personal belongings out in the open. Take them with you or hide them away in the trunk when possible.

1. If you are using cash this year, they said to try not to carry a large amount. They said this is never a good idea and to use a credit or debit card when possible.

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