Christmas shoppers have been warned about thieves looking for victims in shops and crowded places across South Yorkshire.
Today, South Yorkshire Police urged shoppers not to make it easy for thieves and issued a series of crime prevention tips.
A force spokesman said: "Don’t Make It Easy for thieves. Shops can be very crowded over Christmas, which means with all the pushing and bumping, you may not notice if someone takes something from your bag.
"We’re working hard to track down thieves, but there are steps you can take to protect your belongings and reduce your risk of having your purse, wallet, phone or other valuables stolen."
He added: "Stay alert - awareness is your best defence.
"If you're carrying a bag make sure the clasp is facing inwards, all zips are closed and all pockets closed. If your bag is snatched let it go, your safety is more important than your property.
"If you have expensive items on you such as jewellery, a mobile phone, a purse or wallet - keep them out of sight.
"Trust your instincts - if you think something is wrong, then act on it and if you are threatened by a person, scream and shout, set off a personal attack alarm to startle the attacker as this will give you time to escape.
"Try to make a note of details such as registration plates, clothing and height and then report the incident to the police."