And it's not uncommon to check out a local police blotter and read about a a purse or two taken from car while the victim is shopping or working out at a local health and fitness club.
According to Greenfield Police Department Chief Brad Wentlandt, there are easy steps to take to prevent you from being a victim.
"Women almost always leave their purse in a shopping cart," Wentlandt said. "While they are browsing, thieves walk up, open the purse and remove credit cards and money. By the time the victim gets to the check out, the money is spent and the credit cards have been used."
Some suspects will use a second person to stand between the victim and the cart while the items are stolen, Wentlandt said. He added some thieves take the whole purse while others take only debit and credit cards because victims sometimes don't know until after the cards have been used that something is missing.
"Some women don't realize their cards have been stolen until they get home or even the next day," he said.
So, what's the best way to protect yourself?
- Leave the purse locked in the trunk, or better yet, leave it at home.
- Take only one credit card, ID and cash and put that in a pocket.
- Consider a small wallet with a wrist strap.