Most students starting college are both excited and nervous to get started in this new phase of life. Not surprisingly, they have a lot on their minds including classes, extracurricular activities, clubs, sports, and more. Unfortunately, many college students don’t give a thought to the security of their property while away at school. This opens the door for thieves to take advantage of new, unsuspecting students. Consider five security mistakes many students make when they go away to college.
Leaving a Dormitory Room Unlocked
It’s easy for busy college students to forget to lock their dormitory door when rushing out to a morning class or hurrying to catch a fun activity in the evening. After all, they may have lived their entire lives in a house with a lot of other people, and the assumption of roommates being in and out makes things hard to predict. An unlocked dormitory door gives anyone access to a student’s clothing, books, CDs, computer equipment, and more. Students may think that their items are secure because they are in a dormitory full of other rooms occupied by students. However, there is always a possibility that another student, an employee, or a visitor to the dorm may take the opportunity to go in and remove a few items belonging to the student.
Leaving Bags and Other Items Unattended in Classes
Generally, college students bring a lot of items to each class. A backpack full of books is one example. A female student may carry a purse or a pocketbook while male students often have a wallet with them. Once again, college students sometimes feel at ease with leaving these items on their desk as they move around the classroom or take a restroom break while waiting for a professor to arrive. Leaving items on or under an unattended desk in a classroom can make a student vulnerable to theft.
Losing a Key Card to a Dormitory
Many of today’s college dormitories can be accessed with a key card as opposed to a traditional key. When students don’t keep track of their dormitory key cards it puts them, and other students at risk. A person who takes a student’s dormitory key card has access to the possessions of students as well as access to the common room, kitchen areas, and more. Students who lose their dormitory key cards should contact the head of the dormitory right away so steps can be taken to deactivate the card.
Leaving a Car Unlocked
At some colleges, students can bring their car to campus. These students must keep in mind there are thieves looking for unlocked cars in campus parking lots and on nearby streets. It’s a good idea to take all laptops, phones, and other expensive electronics out of a car before parking it. According to some ADT home security system information these kinds of items are especially appealing to thieves.
Not Locking Up Items at a Recreation Center
A recreation center is a familiar place at a college. Students may go there to take exercise classes, run around a track, swim, play tennis, and more. Some students simply stow their bags in an unlocked locker while they work out. This does nothing to protect a bag containing a wallet, glasses, a smartphone, and more. Putting bags and other items into a locker, then locking it is the most prudent way to go. A thief may not see items stuffed into an unlocked locker, but it’s a chance most college students shouldn’t be willing to take.
Finally, college students who take a little bit of time to consider the security of their dorm room and the items they carry are more likely to have a positive experience at school.
Eileen O’Shanassy is a freelance writer and blogger based out of Flagstaff, AZ. She writes on a variety of topics and loves to research and write. She enjoys baking, biking, and kayaking. Check out her Twitter @eileenoshanassy.