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Alert: Heightened Crime During Holiday Season 
U.S. Embassy Lima, Peru – December 9, 2022
December 9, 2022


Lima, Peru

Event: Heightened Crime During Holiday Season

Historically, there is a significant increase of criminal incidents during the Peruvian summer, particularly during the December holiday season.

Tips to reduce your risk:

  • Secure your residence. Confirm identity of guests through residential security, door personnel, and domestic staff.
  • Thieves continue to go after cellular phones. Avoid using them in public and crowded venues. When calling a taxi, try to do so from a secure space and then put your phone away.  Be mindful of the “glow” emitted from electronic devices at night – they could make you a target while walking or in vehicles at traffic stops or stoplights.
  • Do not wear expensive jewelry or watches. Do not carry excessive cash.
  • Be aware of scams. If applicable, talk with your household staff about unusual phone calls, such as claims of kidnappings.  In some cases, the caller will instruct your household staff to provide money or valuables to an accomplice waiting outside your house.
  • Be mindful of your routes as automated mapping apps can route you through undesirable areas to avoid traffic.
  • Secure valuables prior to traveling. Consider putting bags and/or briefcases in the footwell or trunk so they are out of sight. Keep your vehicle doors locked and windows rolled up.
  • If taking commercial transportation, use app-based transportation or a call-in taxi service. If possible, stay in a secure location while waiting for your taxi.  Apply same procedures in hired vehicles as you would in your own vehicle.
  • Thieves often hide among street performers, street vendors, and panhandlers at traffic lights and congested intersections. Use caution and refrain from opening your windows at stop lights or crowded streets when driving.
  • Recognize your activities in shopping areas and other general surroundings may attract criminals who may follow your travel or call/report to another associate in waiting.
  • During the summer more people will be out on the streets, at open air venues, sidewalks, and parks. Watch out for theft and maintain situational awareness to avoid accidents with preoccupied drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians.
  • Discuss and practice personal security measures with your household.

What to do if you become a victim of a crime?

  • Contact Peruvian authorities.
  • File a police report with the police.

Actions to Take:

  • Avoid ​crowds.
  • Keep your phone charged, and carry an ID.
  • Comply with instructions from the Peruvian National Police and local authorities.
  • Register in STEP ( https://step.state.gov/) to receive alerts and messaging from the U.S. Embassy in Lima.

For Assistance:

  • U.S. Embassy Lima, Peru
    Avenida La Encalada cdra. 17 s/n
    Santiago de Surco 15023, Lima
  • U.S. Consular Agency Cusco
    Avenida El Sol 449
  • State Department – Consular Affairs
    +1-888-407-4747 or +1-202-501-4444
  • Peru Country Information
  • To receive alerts, enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  Need help?  Email: CASTEP@state.gov.
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