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Old 13-03-2017, 19:08   #31
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Re: Security in foreign ports

I have concerns about all the devices using WiFi these days. It may be encrypted to protect privacy, but just whether WiFi signals are emitted from the boat (or not) tells a lot - as for example, if you are on the boat or not, or asleep. My opinion is that serious sailboat cruisers ought to invest in a TOR and firewall proxy box connected directly to one omni-directional WiFi antenna and use hardwired (CAT-5) Ethernet cable to laptops on the boat, minimizing use of WiFi and greatly securing it. Ideally, someone ought to produce a WiFi-robot to send out WiFi signals when you are off the boat. I think using WiFi in fairly safe areas is OK (for example, the coasts of Canada and America are likely very safe). Where there have been vandalism or lots of other cruiser issues I think excessive use of WiFi will become increasingly problematic. Just as the NSA can tell a lot from metadata, criminal intent will increasingly monitor WiFi signals to learn a lot about sailboat cruisers. The same issues exist for smart phone use.

On the other-hand, hiding an old, no longer used WiFi device and connecting a USB to 12 VDC charger so it stays charged, in some out of sight place could let the boat get tracked if stolen. There are free aps to do this with most operating systems. But you need to install the ap on the hidden WiFi device before the boat gets stolen. Any WiFi device should work - old laptop, old iPhone, old iPad, old Android device, etc. Keeping these devices charged does not consume very much battery capacity if they are not in use. Many of these aps have no ongoing fee so this could be very inexpensive boat theft protection.
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Old 13-03-2017, 19:08   #32
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Re: Security in foreign ports

Whenever I was on the hook Yucatán puerto Morelos , st Vincent, Anguilla, Union island, has been trouble. When I have tied up in marinas or mooringsI.e puerto Aventuras Mx, Tortola, st Thomas, st Croix, Jost Van Dyke, Bitter end Virgin Gorda, Normans, Soppers Hole, Bonaire, Curaçao, Grenada, Guadeloupe everything went ok. On the hook in Dominica,
St Lucia, Martinique, st Kitts , Statia, Nevis, St John, St Bart's, Caracou, Bequia, Canouan Culebra also ok.
In general French, and Dutch islands no problem the rest tie up in a marina
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Old 13-03-2017, 19:23   #33
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Re: Security in foreign ports

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Whenever I was on the hook Yucatán puerto Morelos , st Vincent, Anguilla, Union island, has been trouble. When I have tied up in marinas or mooringsI.e puerto Aventuras Mx, Tortola, st Thomas, st Croix, Jost Van Dyke, Bitter end Virgin Gorda, Normans, Soppers Hole, Bonaire, Curaçao, Grenada, Guadeloupe everything went ok. On the hook in Dominica,
St Lucia, Martinique, st Kitts , Statia, Nevis, St John, St Bart's, Caracou, Bequia, Canouan Culebra also ok.
In general French, and Dutch islands no problem the rest tie up in a marina
We have anchored for hundreds of nights at non-French/Dutch islands without a problem. I agree with the idea of situational awareness being key, but some people just worry too much about security - it takes away the fun if you worry all the time about 'what if ...'
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Old 13-03-2017, 19:50   #34
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Re: Security in foreign ports

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Originally Posted by CaledonianCruis View Post
I have concerns about all the devices using WiFi these days. It may be encrypted to protect privacy, but just whether WiFi signals are emitted from the boat (or not) tells a lot - as for example, if you are on the boat or not, or asleep. ......
You are taking this to an entirely new level. The risk of theft or attack to me while cruising is not affected at all whether I have a WiFi router on or off or whether it is transmitting an SSID.

There really are a lot of other things more worth worrying about.
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Old 13-03-2017, 21:30   #35
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Re: Security in foreign ports

Invest in all the nautical guidebooks that cover the specific foreign countries you're planning to visit. Nautical guides don't just have pretty pictures and GPS charts. At the start, they also detail that countries specific requirements for International Arrivals and Departures of foreign vessels (pleasure craft & commercial vessels). then directions to port officials offices, then down the coast port by port, anchorage by anchorage, for where you can tie to a commercial pier or marina, where to present yourself ashore to the port officials, or if they come to you, where to haul out for repairs or maintenance, where to provision, etc. Every country has different rules for recreational boating tourists. It it's a French or German or Spanish speaking country, the nautical guides often contain a list of useful boating words or phrases in that language.

Also, check in as a New Arrival with the local VHF cruisers net, often on 22 around 0800, to get answer and the latest local info from fellow cruisers.

One time, after a particularly rough Caribbean passage, we US boaters pulled into Georgetown, Grand Cayman, tied up alongside the main dock and walked ashore looking for a port official to check in with, and then hopefully some lunch. Ten minutes later, the port captain had towed our boat to a different pier half a mile away, near where we were eating lunch, because a cruise ship was planning to use that big main dock. No charge for the tow to the better pier.
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Old 14-03-2017, 05:46   #36
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Re: Security in foreign ports

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Originally Posted by Shrew View Post
Foreign port is relative. My foreign port is some else's home port. Someone else's home port is my foreign port. A foreign port is only relative to the nationality of the sailor entering it.

Try to remove such geocentric thinking from your head. The concept is 'security', the scope is 'when you leave the boat'. The relative safety and security will vary from place to place. Nationality is irrelevant.
"Foreign" doesn't mean "overseas". My question is about what YOU do when you are away from your home port. What ARE your precautions. Please forget the definitions and concentrate on the actual actions you take, for example:

1 Does anyone buy a heavier lock?
2 Heavier door or hasp?
3 Anyone have an electronic system?
4 Never anchor alone?
5 Never leave the boat alone?
6 Bring a weapon?

In my experience we have mostly sailed in club races where there are dozens of visiting boats and hundreds of sailors. I never worried in places like this. But I've never visited a new port alone, either.

Some have noted that you should check harbor notes or use Google. But once you get some info, what have you DONE?

For example, one person mentioned pulling up the dingy, or putting the motor away. Great advice. But what's the option when you go ashore? The dingy and motor are tied up to the public dock. Or pulled up on the beach. What do you do then? I was hoping for some practical experiences about things that worked and things that didn't.

My neighbor and I have identical houses. We are across the street from each other. He has been broken into twice. He had an expensive alarm we don't. We have a dog, he doesn't. What's the answer? I don't know, but I was just wondering what precautions you take and what experiences you have had?
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Old 14-03-2017, 05:57   #37
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Re: Security in foreign ports

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Originally Posted by Bigjim View Post
But what's the option when you go ashore? The dingy and motor are tied up to the public dock. Or pulled up on the beach. What do you do then? I was hoping for some practical experiences about things that worked and things that didn't. ......................
I think I already posted that some people use a steel cable and lock to lock their outboard to their dinghy and to lock their dinghy to the dock or a tree. Of course, you will take the outboard's "key" with you.

We lock our boat when we leave it.


In general, private marinas are more secure than public marinas or free docks. We lock our boat when sleeping on it, in a marina or anchored.


The most important thing though is, if you don't feel safe there, don't go there.
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Old 14-03-2017, 08:27   #38
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Re: Security in foreign ports

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Originally Posted by Caribbeachbum View Post
I will beb scrubbing my keyboard for a bit after this one. I laughed so hard I horked coca-cola on it!

LOL .. Bong noise..
Yeah,I got tickled with that also!
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Old 14-03-2017, 08:36   #39
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Re: Security in foreign ports

It is interesting that people from most crime ridden countries and with largest prison population in the world are always concerned about security in other countries. I can read and write in German and Spanish and when I go to their "nautical" sites I never encountered "questions" like this one about security in foreign ports.
Also I noticed that there is almost no problem when you are in Dutch or French Caribbean/Pacific "colonies", always is trouble in Anglo-Saxon colonies.
Maybe that is left over from anglosaxons mentality, loot, steal, pillage, haras natives and now "locals" just continue well learned school, or what they said "student surpassing teacher"...
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Old 14-03-2017, 08:54   #40
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Re: Security in foreign ports

Myslef for the dink I got a lock that locks the engine to the hull or to the rail,small lock,bad guys are usually like predators they're going to go for the one that's easiest. Onshore definitely blend and try not to stand out in the crowd like with expensive tennis shoes or jewelry whatever. Be smart situation awareness as others have said is Key...
I would hate to come back from lunch & see people moving my boat....it will not be a pleasant conversation, if fact if I had the opportunity they might get wet...that is unless they explain things quickly, well they can still talk wet.... Don't make yourself a target by leaving things exposed like on deck..people are saying to raise the dink at night...goes to not making it easy for them.... but I would like to ask what about a dink I can't raise? You see I want to drag a 14ft aluminum flats boat with a 30 hp along the coast of FL
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Old 14-03-2017, 09:21   #41
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Re: Security in foreign ports

It’s an unfortunate event the OP presented. I too would be concerned if I came back and couldn’t find my boat. But if it had just been moved over a little ways, I wouldn’t sweat it. This happens in marinas or at wharfs, usually for good (or at least reasonable) reasons. No biggy, as long as it is done responsibly.

I infer in this case the OP got in the way of some local event. Too bad there was no one around to talk to prior to tying up. A little chat would likely have prevented the whole thing from happening.

I would never consider locking the mothership to the dock. There are many valid reasons to move someone else’s boat, especially in a marina or public wharf. Again, as long as it is done responsibly, I don’t have a problem with it.
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Old 14-03-2017, 09:42   #42
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Re: Security in foreign ports

"Some have noted that you should check harbor notes or use Google. But once you get some info, what have you DONE? "

Once I got the info that the area had problems, I didn't go to that area without the expectation that something might happen. We're from the East Coast - when I went into NY City I made sure I knew where I was going and how to get there. If the neighborhood was chancy - I didn't go. Consequently I can say that I visited NYC for 25 years and never had a bad experience.

Do your research and you won't put yourself in harms way.
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Old 14-03-2017, 17:11   #43
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Re: Security in foreign ports

the most dangerous places i lived with my boat were in california, usa.
since i arrived in mexico i have had no need for locking my boat, as the locals donot thieve. only things lost were lost to gringos. allegedly cruising yachties... oops.
deal with it. i leave my boat open. my local friends keep watch on me. no one enters my boat when i am away. no one takes my stuff.
donot exhibit wealth. that is a fools game.
oh yes. and DO keep in communication with the marina management. if they need your boat relocated they will let you know before moving it.
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Old 14-03-2017, 19:04   #44
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Re: Security in foreign ports

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigjim View Post
..........................
............. Please forget the definitions and concentrate on the actual actions you take, for example:

1 Does anyone buy a heavier lock?
2 Heavier door or hasp?
3 Anyone have an electronic system?
4 Never anchor alone?
5 Never leave the boat alone?
6 Bring a weapon?

..............................
We moved off our boat about six weeks ago and we're selling it due to my wife's physical limitations. We bought our first liveaboard sailboat in November, 1971 and our cruising range as been from Maine to the Bahamas during this time. We never did 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6. Some time in the late 1980's my Son had his bicycle stolen from a bike rack on shore. We were able to retrieve the bicycle later when we saw some neighborhood kid riding it by the marina. Once my Son had a surfboard taken from our deck,-'never saw that again! So, we had some kids stealing toys. We never had any theft from our boat at anchor and we often anchored alone.

I did always chain my outboard to my dinghy and cable lock my dinghy at public docks, but we never had any experience with even attempted theft to our knowledge. I often raised my dinghy at night, but this was usually so the ducks wouldn't sit on it and crap all over it!

I'm not discounting events of theft, but it just doesn't seem that common in what has been my cruising area.
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Old 15-03-2017, 04:59   #45
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Re: Security in foreign ports

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Originally Posted by royalstar View Post
It is interesting that people from most crime ridden countries and with largest prison population in the world are always concerned about security in other countries. I can read and write in German and Spanish and when I go to their "nautical" sites I never encountered "questions" like this one about security in foreign ports.
Also I noticed that there is almost no problem when you are in Dutch or French Caribbean/Pacific "colonies", always is trouble in Anglo-Saxon colonies.
Maybe that is left over from anglosaxons mentality, loot, steal, pillage, haras natives and now "locals" just continue well learned school, or what they said "student surpassing teacher"...
Maybe it's the fact that the people from the most crime ridden countries (highest rate) in the world know how dangerous it can be to visit an unfamiliar place. Which of the most crime riddled countries are you speaking of? A quick google of crime riddled countries shows South Africa, Honduras, Venezuela, Belize, India, El-Salvador, Guatemala, Jamaica, Swaziland, St Kitts & Nevis, South Africa, Colombia, Cote d'Ivoire, Zambia and Uganda gets an honorable mention with a murder rate of 36.3 murders for every 100,000 people. The French Caribbean islands are nice I am sure, much safer than the former French colonies In North west Africa.
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