Former CIA Officer Jason Hanson Reveals...

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Mailbag Monday

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From Grant W: I am new to your newsletter. One problem I have with all the self-defense newsletters and programs that I have seen is they assume that all can own a firearm. My wife is against guns and with good reasons. Therefore out of respect for her (we have been married for over 21 years) I choose not to own a firearm. Can you please address ways to protect my family without the use of firearms?..

Answer: Obviously, I’m a gun guy but I can understand and respect that everyone isn’t comfortable with guns. There are other tools you can use for self-defense. For example, one of my favorite self-defense tools is my tactical pen. Another option I recommend is a self-defense stun gun flashlight. These are great to carry anytime it’s dark since it appears as a normal flashlight but can be very effective as a defense tool. Also, I know some people like to carry pepper spray since it can be sprayed at a distance and doesn’t require you to be up close.

From Sherrie V: I don’t remember the exact mailing but Jason gave information on what to do and how to handle the credit bureaus in putting a block on people accessing your credit report. Would you be able to give me that information again?

Answer: Here is what I would send to all three agencies: (You can also do this online, if you wish.)

I would like to place a security freeze on my credit file.
My name is:
My former name was (if applicable):
My current address is:
My former address was:
My social security number is:
My date of birth is:
I have enclosed photocopies of a government issued ID and proof of residence. (Utility bill, etc.)
I have included a police report verifying my identity has been stolen (if applicable).
I have included a check for the fee of $X.XX.

You will need to send this letter, documents, and check to all three of the credit reporting agencies at the addresses below:

Equifax Security Freeze
P.O. Box 105788
Atlanta, Georgia 30348

TransUnion LLC
P.O. Box 2000
Chester, PA 19016

Experian Security Freeze
P.O. Box 9554
Allen, TX 75013

After you have sent all three agencies a certified letter (or apply online) they will respond to your request, usually within 10 business days, with a confirmation letter of your security freeze. Each credit agency will also provide you with the PIN number that you use in the future when you need access to your credit history.

From Hilda B: You recommend we add QuikClot to our emergency kits. However, when I went online to buy some, they are asking me to acknowledge I am a medical professional.

I really do not want to lie to purchase this, and there are other brands that do not specify medical training is required, however, I do not want to buy something and use it and do myself or someone else more harm than good because I am not medically trained.

Answer: I’ve purchased QuikClot before on Amazon and I haven’t seen this type of acknowledgment. I would never encourage anyone to lie so I would consider purchasing from Amazon where there is no such requirement. Perhaps, the specific website you were using is extra cautious in the items they sell. From my understanding, QuikClot can be purchased by anyone.

You should, however, be very careful with QuickClot and similar products. They will burn anything the compound touches. This includes hands and other parts of skin, but the eyes, nose, and mouth are of particular concern. QuickClot should only be used as a last resort when you are unable to stop the bleeding of large wounds.

From Allen A: Both you and Cade mention putting important documents on a USB drive when you travel. Do customs and border patrol agents have a right to search items stored on these external devices?

Answer: Yes, Customs and Border Patrol can search your electronic devices. Now, the chances of this are slim but it is something you should be prepared for. However, as long as you don’t have anything illegal on your devices they should let you move along rather quickly. In some extreme cases, Customs and Border Patrol have seized electronic devices for advanced searches but to do this they must have reasonable suspicion that a crime has been committed.

From Mike P: Regarding your recommendation for an emergency radio. The Baofeng UV-5R is showing discontinued on their website. Do you recommend any other models?

Answer: The UV-5R can still be purchased on Amazon for around $25. However, they have produced updated versions such as the UV-5R Plus, UV-5R V2, and the UV-5R 3rd generation. These are all similar in their capabilities but the 3rd generation is the latest version of the radio. I personally own the UV-5R and the UV-5R Plus and they work great.

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