Tips for safe and happy holidays

(Dec. 19, 2011) — Don't let the spirit of the holidays lull you into giving burglars, muggers and scam artists a better chance to do their dirty work. Here are some tips from the Crime Prevention Coalition to help you celebrate safely this holiday season:

If you're traveling:

If you're out in the evening:

If you're shopping:

If a stranger comes to the door:

Beware. Criminals sometimes pose as couriers, delivering gifts. And it's not uncommon for people to try to take advantage of others' generosity by asking for donations when there's no charity involved. Ask for identification, and find out how the fund will be used. If you aren't satisfied, don't give.

Take a holiday inventory:

Take photos or make videos of items, and list descriptions and serial numbers. If your home is burglarized, having a detailed inventory can help identify stolen items and make insurance claims easier to file. Include anything of value - and remember to check your list twice!

Based in Madison, Wis., American Family Insurance offers auto insurance, homeowners insurance, life insurance, health insurance, business and farm/ranch insurance in 19 states. American Family Mutual Insurance Company is the nation's third-largest mutual property/casualty insurance company. Web:; Facebook:; Twitter: