DSS offers tips on how to avoid being kidnapped

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Apparently worried by the rising cases of kidnappings across the country, the Department of State (DSS) has given Nigerians some guidelines on how to avoid being kidnapped.

In a handbook signed by Ahmed Salisu and dated February 20, 2020, the DSS listed several security tips for members of the public, especially VIPs, including dressing moderately and being conscious of ones surroundings.

The tips are:Dress Moderately Dress to avoid being noticed. Do not stand out by wearing clothes and jewelry that are either too conspicuous or culturally inappropriate at vulnerable locations. This could draw unnecessary attention to you. It further advised: Be Familiar with Your Surroundings Identify buildings, structures of importance and other prominent features, such as police stations and military bases.

“Have adequate information about your places of interest and work locations. Voice Concerns About Crime Alert local security agencies of any suspicious activities in your environment for preventive measures, but avoid raising false alarm.

“Do not wait until you are kidnapped or allow a breach of security to occur before taking action.”

The department also listed other steps to include, keeping personal itinerary secret, changing routes to place of work and home and avoiding revealing personal data on social media.

Others are: “Doing proper checks before employing anyone, knowing your neighbours and keeping emergency numbers, installing CCTV cameras, maintaining a moderate lifestyle and avoiding discussing financial issues carelessly in the public.”

The secret police further advised that in the event of being kidnapped, one should keep calm and try not to provoke the kidnappers in order not to put life at stake.

The organisation also advised family members of a kidnapped victim to consider closing social media accounts of a hostage.

On the issue of ransom, the DSS said paying money to kidnappers by family members to secure the release of a hostage constitutes safety risk and logistical challenge.

It said that experience had shown that people that gave in to ransom demand quickly, were prone to future attacks by the same gang.

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