'Thief' Fools Staffers, Steals Guests’ Belongings From Hotel Rooms

A security expert posed as a thief to show hotel security vulnerabilities.

ByABC News
May 16, 2016, 7:20 AM

— -- To see just how safe your belongings are during a hotel stay, “GMA” conducted an experiment – sending in two producers as guests at two separate Virginia hotels.

The producers were followed and watched by safety and security expert Bill Stanton who was able to pull off two brazen thefts at the hotels with undercover cameras rolling.

Here are Stanton's top five hotel safety tips to secure your belongings while traveling.

1. A hotel’s goal is to make you feel comfortable. It is the hospitality industry, but don’t be lulled into a false sense of security! Be alert! This starts at check-in. Never say your name out loud at check-in. That is privileged information. Be prepared to show your ID at check in to avoid giving any personal information out loud where people can overhear.
2. When you're in your room keep the additional lock on at all times.
3. If you lose your room key and need another one, make sure the hotel disables the first one when they give you a replacement.
4. When you do leave your room always make it appear as though it’s occupied. Leave the TV and lights on to give the appearance of someone in the room.
5. Before you go to a hotel, check with them about what their state’s liability is regarding personal property loss. It’s a safe bet you don’t want to be traveling with valuable jewelry or lots of cash given you may have little or no recourse if it’s lost or stolen. The best advice: if you have something of great value, leave it locked up at home where it is safe!