I have responded to 2 Armed Robbery calls in the past week, both at ATMs. With the upcoming holidays and the [censored] overall economy, ATM users are making for good targets. Each happened at around the evening "rush" hours of 6-8PM, when folks are tired from work and there are lots of people about for the thieves to "blend" in with upon their escape. Couple of tips from officer friendly here. 1-Avoid using the ATM period. Go into the bank for your cash or use a store that gives you cash back with a purchase (we all need a pack of gum, right?)at no additonal cost. 2-If absolutely necessary, use one early in the day (most thieves sleep late) in a visible, well lit, heavy traffic area. Both ATMs in question were located behind the bank and not visible from the street. 3-Think about what you would do if approached, ie; have a plan of escape/attack. Most victims are easy prey due to surprise and a lack of planning. Think about things like scanning the area before approaching, and during time at the ATM. Keeping the car in drive while using the ATM. Or use your horn if someone approaches. One final thing to consider, if you happen to arm yourself with a firearm of any other self-defense weapon: Know how/when to use it and TRAIN with it. Even if it is something as simple as visualization, seeing in your mind yourself in a bad situation and what you would do to react, is much better no plan or the false sense of security that just carrying (without training) provides. Stay safe and have a happy holiday season.