Personal security tips

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – The deadly terror attacks in Belgium have left many evaluating their personal safety at home and overseas.

Former Homeland Security Special Agent Steve MacMartin said you can bolster your personal security by making sure that you’re aware of your surroundings at all times.

“Everybody’s sense of personal security should be heightened a little bit. You should be aware of what’s going on around you,” MacMartin said.

For example, if you walk into a building know where the exits are.

Also, know who’s around you and if someone is following you. “Watch people that may be walking around. See if you see the same size person twice or three times while you’re out. Look for someone who’s wearing the same kind of coat. Look for someone that may have had a hat and glasses on and then took them off. But otherwise physically is the same person. They all indicate someone may be following you,” MacMartin said.

If you’re traveling, you should know where the evacuation route is at your hotel. Take it when there isn’t an emergency. That way you’ll be prepared if there is one.

According to MacMartin, airports, train and bus stations are prime targets for terrorists. Therefore, if you’re walking through heavily congested spots, get in and out of them quickly. “At each venue like that, no matter how it’s protected, there are certain choke points. There are places where you’re going to be stopped and grouped with other people. Those are the places you want to think about spending the least amount of time in.”

Also, be observant. Pay attention for any packages or bags left unattended. If you notice something unusual, you should get to a safe place, then call police.

MacMartin said it’s important for people to be aware of these things. He believes it’s likely that there will be another terrorist attack on U. S. soil. “I think a terrorist attack in the United States is inevitable. Whether it’s a lone wolf attack, like the San Bernardino shootings or it’s a larger attack, like the one that occurred in Europe is hard to say. I think we’re in danger of seeing both,” he said. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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