Are You being followed on Foot or by Car? What to do

One of the things I impress upon people is what never to do, and what TO do, if they suspect they’re being followed on foot or by car.

1SDDon’t be oblivious to your surroundings. Observe everything 50-100 feet around the perimeter of your body as you move from point A to point B.

Note anything that seems out of place, like a car that’s taking all the same turns you are. A pedestrian following you may veer off at a side street, then re-emerge to catch up with you.

Slow down. If you’re walking, stop and fiddle with a shoelace (while being aware). Who also slows down or suddenly stops? Speeding up might cause an amateur to also speed up, but a pro will not make this conspicuous change unless you’re about to make a blind turn.

Call the police. Let the police handle the situation. If you get off a main road, head to the nearest police station. If no-one is around, go to a people-filled public spot. Have a seat, have a soda, and observe your follower for any details.

Stay cool. Don’t speed or drive carelessly. If you’re being followed by a chain of pros, they’ll be all along your route, so speeding won’t help. If you suspect the follower is a road rager, stay on main roads, drive to a police station.

Confuse the follower. E.g., exit, then get back on the road you got off. If someone behind you duplicates this behavior, you know something’s not right. Or, make multiple turns in the same direction and see if your follower does the same.

Alter routes. Take different ways to drive home from work.

If you suspect you’re being followed, follow the above guidelines and make getting to a safe spot a priority.

Robert Siciliano personal and home security specialist to discussing burglar proofing your home on Fox Boston. Disclosures.

If A Robber Wants Your Money, Give It To Them

When a robber walks in to a place of business the general advice given is to give them what monetary request they make and let them leave. Fighting for materials items is never a good idea. There isn’t a dollar amount one can put on a life or on a box cutter across the face.

But in recent weeks, 2 Boston area store clerks fought off robbers. One man used a pepper spray and a woman used a metal rod. Both situations could have easily gone wrong, but these two clerks decided to fight. Mind you, I’m no pacifist.

The Boston Globe reported “The man leaned over the counter, said “Hi,’’ and, with a knife in his right hand, calmly warned the clerk to stay away from any alarm buttons, according to a surveillance video that captured the encounter. “Give me the money in the register now. No buttons. Put the phone down.’’ Then he turned his head. And that was when the clerk swung a 4-foot, 15-pound iron rod from behind the counter and brought it crashing down on his wrist.

“He had the knife, and I had something prepared, too,’’ she said, holding the rod that knocked the knife from the man’s hand.”


Congratulations to the clerk. It’s always nice to hear when good conquers evil. This situation could have gone very wrong if she missed. History proves when a drugged up animal wants your money, they will often take the money and run.

It is true offering resistance has been proven to stop an attack situation more than 80% of the time. But, I only recommend someone offer resistance when their personal security is at risk. You can argue that this woman’s personal security was at stake, but robbery response 101 is to give the money up and let them leave. If they want your money, wallet, purse, just toss it in one direction and run screaming on the other.

Robert Siciliano personal and home security specialist to Home Security Source discussing Home Security on NBC Boston.