S'pore-based singer falls prey to pickpocket in Thailand
It takes only one moment of letting your guard down for bad things to happen.
Singapore-based singer Bonnie Loo would know.
The 20-year-old was the epitome of "suay" (Hokkien for unlucky) during a work trip to Thailand this week, when she got pickpocketed.
The Riverside Secondary School alumnus, who won last year's Campus Superstar singing contest, had been nagging everyone with her to watch over their belongings.
The Singapore-based singer after she lost her mobile phone to a pickpocket abroad. PHOTO: Facebook/ Bonnie Loo
Loo, 20, was looking forward to shooting the music video for her third single - Warm Hands.
She told The New Paper didn't know that her mobile phone was stolen until she reached the hotel.
The pickpocket probably struck when she was walking on the crowded streets to a supper place.
"I kept my phone in the front zipper pocket of my backpack.
"When I realised (it) was gone, I panicked and searched for it everywhere but couldn't find it. We went back to the streets in hope of finding it but to no avail.
"All my contacts and photos are lost along with the phone (Samsung Galaxy Note 4)."
She lodged a police report but has yet to get a new phone.
Rather than grieve over the loss of the gadget, Loo said she was more upset over the loss of memories stored in the phone and her social media accounts' log-in details.
Here's how you can avoid pickpockets in Singapore and overseas:
The National Crime Prevention Council carried advice from the police about pickpockets' trade secrets.
To avoid falling prey to their tactics, keep these measures in mind.
- Don't display excessive cash in public.
Use NETS & ATM cards for cashless transactions where possible to avoid drawing unnecessary attention.
- Pickpockets deliberately bump into an unsuspecting person in a crowd.
Check your wallets, handbag and valuables immediately if someone bumps into you unnecessarily.
They create a commotion in public to distract everybody's attention so they can strike.
- Be on guard while at an ATM or after a bank transaction.
- Don't doze off in the bus/ MRT train & leave your belongings unattended.
- Don't be distracted by strangers.
Be wary of situations in which they create a commotion or accidentally spilling something on you.
According to the US Embassy, these precautions could help you guard against losing your valuables when travelling.
The first rule of thumb is don't have anything more in your wallet than you are willing to lose.
Keep only what is essential: ONE credit/ATM card and ONE piece of identification.
Make a copy of your passport, and front and back of everything that you have in your wallet.
In case something happens, you have all the numbers and contact information to cancel your cards and replace your passport.
Ladies, only carry purses that zip and hold it tightly under your arm, slightly in front of you
If you have the backpack-type purse, swing it around so that it is slightly in front of you as well.
Keep your purse where you can see it.
Gents, put a rubber band around your wallet and put it in your front pocket. This is going to make it extremely difficult for someone to get it out without your knowledge.
Sources: US Embassy, National Crime Prevention Council