As Loudoun County communities continue to be targeted by burglars and con artists, the Loudoun County sheriff’s office is offering free classes to help residents avoid becoming victims of the latest crime trends.

The classes, offered in conjunction with October’s National Crime Prevention Month, will be taught by members of the Adult Crime Prevention Unit.

Loudoun residents have been plagued in recent months by phone scams, which appear to be on the rise, according to Sheriff Michael L. Chapman. In one recent instance, a caller posing as a law enforcement official claimed that a victim owed money for traffic offenses, back taxes and other debts.

The upcoming courses will highlight scams that have occurred in the Loudoun area, as well as some that could migrate to Loudoun from neighboring jurisdictions.

“We want to make sure that people are aware of what’s going on, so when they get phone calls or e-mail messages telling them that they’ve won something or should send money for a processing fee, they realize it is a scam and are able to shut it down right away,” Chapman said.

Other classes will focus on home security and helping residents prevent burglaries. Law enforcement officials will cover topics including security systems, locks and lights, safes, window security and techniques for hiding valuables. As the holidays approach and residents are more likely to be traveling, the incidence of burglaries may increase, Chapman said.

“It’s especially important for people to be aware and taking basic steps, like attending [the] Sheriff’s Office’s community meetings, and communicating with their neighbors,” he said.

The office will offer fraud-
prevention classes at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Eastern Loudoun Station, 46620 E. Frederick Dr., Sterling; at 7 p.m. Oct. 23 at the Dulles South Safety Center, 25216 Loudoun County Pkwy., Chantilly; and at 7 p.m. Oct. 30 at the Woods Community Center, 44020 Louisa Dr., Ashburn. A course on home security will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Woods Community Center in Ashburn.

Information on upcoming classes and events offered by the Loudoun County sheriff’s office can be found at