Be Aware of the ‘Crime Triangle’ Police Urge

    JN Group
    Deputy Superintendent of Police, Rochelle McGibbon-Scott makes a presentation to the members during the meeting.

    Photo Caption: Deputy Superintendent of Police, Rochelle McGibbon-Scott makes a presentation to the members during the meeting.

    The police are urging Jamaicans to become aware of what law enforcers call “the crime triangle”, noting that understanding of the concept could help reduce their vulnerability to criminal attacks, including financial crimes.

    Speaking to JN Members in Ocho Rios, St. Ann at a members’ meeting organised by JN Bank, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Rochelle McGibbon-Scott said crime prevention is everybody’s business and by being aware they can help to dismantle the concept.

    A crime triangle are the three factors that enable criminal acts. These are the victim, desire, and the opportunity.

    “We really need all three elements for a crime to be committed, so as a society, we will have to decide which is easier for us to technically get rid of to minimise the risk of crime.”

    To reduce one’s vulnerability to victimisation, she

    said, citizens need to practice what is referred to as target hardening. This means making oneself less of a target for criminals.

    “We are trying to harden ourselves, and we are trying to harden the opportunities. When we speak about ‘crime triangle’, we need all three [elements] so if we should move away any side, then we really and truly cannot have a crime being committed. When they are targeting you, they are looking at how well you are a target to them- the easiest access,” she pointed out. “When we talk about hardening the target, we are really just saying that we have to do some things differently, so that we can minimise the ‘desires’ of these criminals [to attack you].”


    She provided three tips JN members can employ to ‘harden’ themselves and consequently protect themselves from crimes.

    1. Protect your PIN

    Superintendent McGibbon-Scott said protecting the PIN (personal identification number) assigned to one’s debit or credit card is of utmost importance. She reminded JN members that their PINs should not be shared with anyone.

    Recalling a visit to a bank in Port Maria recently, she said while waiting to conduct a transaction, she noticed a woman using the ATM inside the branch. The woman was on her cell phone while withdrawing cash and did not take care to cover her PIN when entering it to prevent others around from seeing.

    “Up to now, I can still repeat the lady’s PIN, so there was no protection layer for her PIN, and she was just on her phone while entering it, probably assuming everyone was there doing legitimate business. So, when she went outside, I went to her and said, ‘Your PIN is 2121. I am a police officer and what you just did in the bank is wrong and you will open yourself and make yourself vulnerable to anybody because you don’t know who is in the bank”.

    The DSP reported that the woman thanked her, as she did not realise what she had done.

    2. Look out for Suspicious Emails

    The police officer noted that not every email is authentic and may be sent from scammers seeking to lure persons into providing personal information so they can defraud them.

    “And what we find happening now across the banks, I’m not sure if it is happening with JN, but they are actually replicating the actual online system. We have persons within these sectors who should really be protecting all of us, but they are also working with the gangsters, giving out the information and replicating the systems that are there and it looks exactly like what you’re required at the bank to do.”

    She also advised JN members to never provide passwords, card numbers or any personal details to anyone and to educate others who may not be aware to be careful of suspicious emails.

    3. Protect Your Cards While on Vacation

    The crime fighter noted that persons tend to become lax when on vacation and tend to leave their bank cards and sensitive details and instruments in their hotel rooms, which, she emphasised, should not be done.

    “We have had quite a number of cases of persons leaving their handbags with cards in their hotel rooms and the very same persons who come in to clean, will walk with their own machines and swipe and replicate your card, she stated. Less than two months ago, we had a lady who was staying at a hotel for a week and noticed that her card was used at a hardware in St Mary,” the DSP revealed, “and she never left the property, which simply means that it is an inside job,” she pointed out.

    In closing, DSP McGibbon-Scott reminded the audience to always remain vigilant and to protect their privacy.

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