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Future Health

Personal Safety

August 15, 2022 

Personal safety is an umbrella term that refers to the awareness and prevention of any physical or psychological harm. The effects could be either physical, psychological, or financial. There are four major sections of personal safety to understand. They are the following:

1. Physical and Sexual Assault
Physical assault - aggravated assault, assault with a deadly weapon, or assault with the intent to kill.
Sexual assault - any type of forced or coerced sexual contact or behavior that happens without consent.

Victims of these two often feel ashamed, afraid, angry, sad, helpless, or even highly anxious. There are ways to prevent it. Make sure to be aware of your surroundings, travel with a buddy, carry a personal alarm, limit alcohol intake and so much more. The victims are never to blame in this case!

2. Online Safety
Internet security includes weak passwords, clicking before you think, and using a public wi-fi network. There are two common threats when it comes to online safety. They are:
Phishing schemes - either via email or social media, with a goal to access account information.
Ransomware - Locks you out of the computer and threatens to delete your digital existence unless you pay. There are some ways to prevent this;

● Create a strong password
● Never include sensitive/personal info online
● Know the signs
● Use a trusted firewall
● Check the site for legitimacy

If you are ever a victim, use an anti-virus software, backup your information, change your passwords, monitor your financial accounts, and contact a computer expert. Believe it or not, about 15 percent of Americans do not check their social media network security and privacy account settings. With the amount of access everyone has to the internet, comes some cons. One to be cyberbullying. Cyberbullying is where a person uses social media to humiliate others online. It can range from embarrassing or cruel posts to online threats, harassments, comments or more. Make sure to tell someone and avoid escalating the situation anymore. Document the cyberbullying and report it!

3. Identity Theft
This is a serious crime where someone uses information about you without permission and is usually for financial gain. In 2014, about 7 percent of people ages 16 and over, were victims of identity theft. Some people wonder how it can happen. Identity theft can happen when you are buying things with your cards, when you take out loans, or even getting medical care. Make sure to protect yourself! Perpetrators tend to steal garbage or mail, information from businesses, or even try to steal wallets or purses.

To try to avoid this, never give away any personal information like your social security number, guard your financial information, shred any financial documents, and make sure to review your banking frequently. If you or someone you know is a victim of identity theft, please do the following:

● Call the companies to report fraud
● Place fraud alerts
● Get your credit report
● Report identity theft to FTC
● File a report to your local police department

4. Personal Injury
Personal injury is the fourth leading cause of accidental death. This includes poisoning, motor vehicle accidents, slips and falls, and more. Motor vehicle accidents can be due to driving while under the influence or even distracted driving. Other accidental deaths can be due to slips and falls, accidental drowning, and fire and burns.

Take control and be aware of your environment. Regular exercise can improve cognitive processing by helping to better handle a crisis.

To learn more about personal safety please follow the link: