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Alert Bulletins

Alert Bulletins provide up to date information on current crime trends and special training opportunities. 

 

Crime Alerts/
News

Beware of distraction burglaries
Police seeking suspects who stole $250K 
Beware of scam targeting seniors
Mission Viejo's Deputy of the Year
Young Students Using Electronic Cigarettes 
Mission Viejo ranked as California's safest city
Beware of phone scams 
Mail Safety Tips
Home Security- Tips for Summer
Vehicle Burglary Alert 
Beware of Solicitors 
Catalytic Converter Theft Alert
Emergency Preparedness

More Information

Special Events and Training

Trauma Intervention Programs seeking volunteers 
Dare to Prepare 
Drive-thru Document Shredding
The Parent Project 
26th Annual Walk Against Drugs
Youth Committee Supports Police Services
Thousands Walk Against Drugs  

 

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Police Services:

Awareness is key to a safer community    

 
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Mission Viejo Police Services seeks to increase resident awareness of crime trends with an emphasis on public safety.

Crime reports show increases in window smash burglaries, but there are still a number of cases where entry was accessed through an open door, window or by locating “hidden keys.”

Burglary is usually considered a crime of opportunity, where entry is made through open or unlocked entries. These are also crimes that can often be deterred with locks. In contrast, forced entry is when a door is pried or window is smashed. There have even been some sliding window door smashes. However, one such attempt was thwarted by a window pin lock, which includes a pin into a stationary pillar. This type of lock is usually effective because they prohibit movement of the overall window.

Previous statistics have shown burglaries at 90% opportunity and 10% forced. Currently they are at 50%. Criminals are more aggressive. Therefore, we as a community also need to match their aggressiveness with a heightened sense of awareness and vigilance. 

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It is also worthy to note that in a few instances, criminals knocked on front doors and when no one answered, they entered the homes through a rear entrance. These burglars were then surprised by residents that were home but did not answer the door. This takes the crime to a whole new and dangerous level.

Another scenario that has occurred is when someone comes to the front door identifies themselves as a service worker and distracts the resident while a second subject steals property.

The message here is that if you are home, let it be known. Don’t open the door, but let the visitor know you are not interested in their goods or services. For utility workers, contact the utility company to confirm they have employees in the neighborhood.

Residents should also be aware that common vehicle crimes include theft of property left in plain view, stolen third-row seats, and catalytic converters on Toyota and Nissan Sport Utility Vehicles.

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Vigilance is especially important this time of year. Summer time can leave residents vulnerable as more unattended doors and windows are left open for ventilation.

Key ingredients to reducing crime include employed locks and awareness coupled with a willingness to call the Sheriff’s Department regarding suspicious people, vehicles or activity. Residents must recognize that crime happens in safe cities and precautions should be taken. It is crucial for people to be alert, aware in their neighborhoods and the the eyes and ears of the Sheriff’s Department.

Neighborhood Watch programs provide training and establish communication vital to keeping our community safe. Check out the Neighborhood Watch tab to the upper left for program information.

For non-emergencies and reporting of suspicious activity, call the Sheriff’s Department dispatch number at 949-770-6011.

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Cyber Scam Warning

Recent cyber scams to be aware of:

 
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  • Virus-laden fake iTunes vouchers- Emails containing supposed iTunes gift certificates were actually loaded with malware. Spoofed emails purportedly offering $50 vouchers for the iTunes Store, which arrive with email subject lines such as “iTunes Gift Certificate.” The emails come with an attachment supposedly containing a certificate code. In reality, these zip file attachments are infected with the Windows PC-compatible malware.
    - Source: The Register UK
    - Safety Tip: If seems too good to be true, it probably is!
  • "PayPal"email address change phishing scheme doing rounds- PayPal users have been targeted again as emails supposedly sent by the online payment company urge them to fill out a form with their personal and financial information to prevent the suspension of their accounts. With “You have changed your PayPal email address” in the subject line, the sender attempts to convince the recipient that someone has accessed their account and changed the e-mail address. To “keep the original email and restore their PayPal account,” the users must fill out an attached Personal Profile Form-PayPal-.htm form. “Helpfully” notes “say the form needs to be opened in a modern browser which has javascript enabled (ex: Internet Explorer 7, Firefox 3, Safari 3, Opera 9).” For those who fall for this scam, the submitted information gets sent directly to the phishers, Sophos points out.
    -  Source: http://www.net-security.org/secworld.php?id=12003
    -  Safety Tip: NEVER trust email for financial notice. Always use a trusted phone number to call PayPal, banks, and doctors directly.  
 
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  • Android monitoring software hides SMS trojan- Kaspersky Lab experts came across what looked like a legitimate application for monitoring/managing SMS, calls and internet traffic on an Android smartphone. Except, upon closer inspection, the app hosted on the Web as SuiConFo, was hiding a SMS trojan identified as Trojan-SMS.AndroidOS.Foncy, which sends four short messages to premium rate numbers. The malware will not only send short messages, but it will also hide incoming SMS from certain numbers. Because such trojans can generate a considerable income, it is likely these operations will be extended to affect citizens of other countries.
    - Source: Softpedia
    - Safety Tip: Android application should be considered un-trusted. Use Google and read magazine reviews before you download any app. 
 
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  • Special deals – Offers appear via email or social media sites saying that they are for select customers, limited time, hot deals, surveys, etc. All the user needs to do is click on the web link and complete a form. The click downloads a key stroke logger (so they can gather your passwords and financial information), and the form gathers name, address, and visa information. User should never click on offers supplied by web links, instead they should Google search for the real web site. Modern malware can avoid anti-virus detection.
    - Safety Tip: Use Google to verify any special deals, simply search on any keyword. Real deals will have live links and user comments.
  • Email from your bank –You may get an email which appears to be from your bank warning you of some questionable charges and asking you to click on the supplied link to complete a form about your spending. No Bank, Credit Union, Health Provider, or retail store will EVER email you asking for your private information. You should ignore the message, DO NOT TRUST any names, phone numbers, etc in the email. Immediately, call the bank using the phone number on your credit card or prior statement or found by Google.
    - Safety Tip: Cybercrime and social engineering exploit user trust. In the area of Finance and privacy, always independently verify first. 
 

Contact Us:

For non-emergency information, call Mission Viejo Police Services at (949) 470-8433 or contact us via email at crimeprevention@cityofmissionviejo.org.