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Fraud Education



In this scheme, criminals target bank customers who have just made a withdrawal. Criminals follow a victim — or “jug” them — as they move from one location to another, striking when the victim is caught off guard, distracted or has left cash or valuables in an accessible location such as a car.

Don’t be fooled by the appearance of simplicity. These days, well-organized groups plan and coordinate jugging. The crimes, which often happen quickly and quietly, are carried out by a network of individuals who coordinate every step from identification of potential targets to the thefts themselves.

How can you spot jugging scenarios?

Jugging is a crime of opportunity, and it can happen anywhere. Your actions and awareness of your surroundings can go a long way in keeping you out of criminals’ sights. If you’re going to be taking a large amount of cash somewhere or plan to leave somewhere with cash in hand, ask yourself these questions:

  • Is there a stranger loitering outside the building, in your expected path or near your car?
  • Could someone have noticed cash in your hands or are you clearly carrying a money envelope or bag?
  • Do you feel like you’re being followed by someone on foot or by car?
  • Is someone trying to distract you or making a scene nearby?

Recognizing what makes a victim vulnerable is a great first step in protecting yourself. While banks, including First Community Bank, have enhanced branch security and surveillance in response, that’s only one place thieves frequent. No matter where you are, there are simple steps you can take to increase your safety when you’re out and about with cash.

First Community Bank has upgraded security and cameras, and our staff remains vigilant to identify suspicious behavior.

What steps help prevent jugging?

Practicing preventive measures is a great start to protecting yourself and your cash from theft by jugging. Reduce your risk by adopting the following practices when depositing, withdrawing or carrying large amounts cash:

  • Try to use other banking methods before resorting to large cash withdrawals.
  • Don’t display or count cash in the open.
  • Disguise easy-to-spot cash bags or envelopes.
  • Bring someone else with you if must handle large amounts of money.
  • Pay attention to your surroundings, avoid behavior patterns and look for people who might be watching you.
  • Secure cash as quickly as possible in a safe location — ideally not in your car.

If you find yourself caught in a scenario that makes you uneasy, call 911. If you’re in your car, don’t stop. Drive to the nearest police station for assistance.

Sources: BankPak