“There is a smartphone app that is rapidly gaining popularity across the country. It is called Pokemon GO, and it is sort of an outdoor treasure hunt where you use your GPS-enabled smartphone to locate Pokemons. While the game was intended to be a fun outdoor activity where you can explore new areas and get some exercise in the process, there have already been reports that criminals are using the app to create “beacons” to draw people in and then rob them or commit other crimes. This is an easy way to be robbed of your cell phone, as criminals know you have one in your possession since it is required to play the game. Below are some tips to reduce your risk of becoming a victim:
1. Always be aware of your surroundings, and look up from your phone frequently. There are reports that players have fallen down hills, into holes, stepped off curbs into traffic, and run into objects such as trees and poles because they are concentrating on their phones.
2. Do not play the game at night and stay out of poorly lit areas.
3. Try to stay in public areas where other people are around.
4. Stay clear of alleyways, tunnels, and other secluded areas.
5. Make sure that someone else knows that you are playing, and what area you will be playing in.”