The Bottleneck

The Bottleneck

Most pickpockets work in teams. Be wary when in crowded areas, keep your passport close and keep it safe.

It's no secret that pickpockets like to work in teams and in crowds. In addition, pickpockets go out of their way to target unsuspecting tourists at popular destinations. When everything aligns, thieves come together to complete a classic pickpocket trick called: The Bottleneck Pick.

This pickpocket method works with at least two thieves. Once they identify a target, the first mugger will stand in a narrow and crowded place, like the entrance to an escalator. Before entering, the mugger will suddenly change his mind, backing off and accidentally bumping into the person in front of him. This allows the second mugger to stealthily pick the target's pocket without causing suspicion.

The key to success is the element of surprise and a target who is not paying attention to their surroundings. Before entering a line or narrow space, take note of everything – especially anyone who may be staring at you. As you enter, keep your hands on critical items in pockets or purses, and make sure yours is the only hand that touches them.

How to Avoid:

It is often said that the best invitation for a thief is a wallet in the back pocket. Keep all of your valuables concealed, and consider using a decoy wallet which holds no cards and a minimal amount of cash to distract thieves.

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