A Question for Open Carry Folks.


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ezypikns
September 21, 2008, 11:37 PM
Let me say that whether you open carry or not is your own business, and I support your right to open carry.
It's not available to me legally right now (Texas.....just wait, someone will contadict that statement). It's also not something I'm likely to do anytime. The main reason is that I don't want anyone (neighbors, passersby, anyone) to know that I have firearms in my house. A likely scenario would be you, arriving home, walking into your house with your weapon in plain sight. It seems to me that if that occurs often enough, people might remark or remember such a thing. That's not something I'm comfortable with. Of course, they MIGHT suppose you were a peace officer, and that wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing.
Do those who open carry see this as a problem?

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NetJunkie
September 21, 2008, 11:42 PM
Doesn't bother me. Some of my neighbors know I have guns. We've discussed it. I'm not too worried about someone stealing them. If they do I have insurance to cover it. I want people to know I shoot. I want them to see a "normal" IT professional with a wife, baby, and dog shoot. If they want to learn it gives them someone to lean on if they want. We need MORE people making guns a normal thing...not hiding it.

VARifleman
September 21, 2008, 11:45 PM
I figure I'm better off from actual harm with people knowing that I have firearms and if they attack me they may not fair as well as they would hope. Plus drawing from open is really fast, CCW...not so much.

rfurtkamp
September 21, 2008, 11:52 PM
What I've learned open carrying when I do it: *NOBODY* notices.

I get no stares, no strange furtive cell phone calls, no nothing.

A matte black gun butt against black clothes doesn't exactly stand out, but then again, I don't run around brandishing it either or touching it every 3s or drawing attention to myself.

I don't have any stories to share of being harassed by police or passerby, I might as well been carrying a cellphone.

Sistema1927
September 21, 2008, 11:52 PM
People see me hauling my long guns out to go to the range all the time, so it doesn't really matter if they see a handgun on my hip.

I don't always open carry, but I have done so from time to time, both here in NM as well as in AZ, and I have never experienced any hassles. Open carry is downright liberating.

Edit to add: I agree with the earlier comment that folks don't generally notice. Even while carrying an N-frame revolver and a double moon clip holder.

azhunter122
September 21, 2008, 11:56 PM
I don't see it as a problem as long as your a good neibor and a good person.

Prepster
September 22, 2008, 12:22 AM
I've never had a big problem, but my Prius driving, granola munching, socialist neighbor told me she didn't like that I was promoting a violent lifestyle. I would have told her to get off my property, but she was on the sidewalk. A person like that will never think logically. Nobody else seems to care though.

Defensory
September 22, 2008, 02:56 AM
If people want to open carry, I have no problem with that.

However, I believe they're fooling themselves if they think it's going to deter all criminals. In many cases, it will ATTRACT criminals.

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in armed robberies of gun shops, as well as armed robberies of gun shop/firing range employees and customers in the shop/range parking lots, or followed after they left and later robbed.

Not to mention armed robberies of shooters at unstaffed outdoor public ranges, some of whom were even murdered, such as THR's own Reverend McCalla (RIP).

Concealed carry retains the element of surprise, and doesn't advertise to criminals that you've got a gun to steal.

Ragnar Danneskjold
September 22, 2008, 03:18 AM
However, I believe they're fooling themselves if they think it's going to deter all criminals. In many cases, it will ATTRACT criminals.

I think you're wrong. The vast majority of robberies and the like are crimes of opportunity. Criminals, as a rule, are opportunists. They are looking for the simplest, easiest, and fastest way to make $$ without having to get a job. They generally do possess a survival instinct. Of course there are going to be the handful of real mentally unstable types or gang-bangers who want to look "hard" by picking someone armed. But i highly doubt this is "many" criminals. I don't even think it qualifies as "some". "A few" is more like it. There are SO MANY people out there who wander through life without paying attention. Criminals can spot these people with ease. When they see a person who is armed, all they have to do is wait a few minutes for the next person to walk by who isn't armed, and their chances of making some fast cash and living through it increase drastically. They kind of criminal who deliberately goes out of their way to find a harder and more dangerous mark is few and far between.

crotalus01
September 22, 2008, 03:44 AM
All my neighbors know I have guns. I also have the luxory of having at least one neighbor home 24/365.
As far as open carry goes, its much more comfortable in the heat, and to be completly honest most (97%) sheeple dont ever notice that evil gun on your hip

Dr. Fresh
September 22, 2008, 04:44 AM
The trick with OC is situational awareness. Same with CC. Just don't let someone sneak up on you.

xstuntman
September 22, 2008, 05:16 AM
I agree with TaurusOwner 100%. In reply to your question, I think our goverment and news media have done a pretty good job of projecting the image that anyone who openly carries is an unhinged anti-social type, or has a very violent itch. Prepsters Prius driving, granola munching, socialist neighbor is a prime example flaming Politcal Correctness. She'll obviously never carry but on her planet there's a cop on every corner.

Come next September I'll hopefully be openly carrying in the great state of Texas, PC be hanged. Mike

rfurtkamp
September 22, 2008, 06:39 AM
In recent years, there has been a significant increase in armed robberies of gun shops, as well as armed robberies of gun shop/firing range employees and customers in the shop/range parking lots, or followed after they left and later robbed.

I used to have to open and close a shop, usually alone. It was extremely unnerving to say the least, and frankly, open carry at that point is a hopeful deterrent. Anyone who wanted to target me then would have done so open or otherwise if they were serious. After my first freak hangeron looking for an opportunity (or so it seemed), I went overt ugly open carry doing open and close.

As soon as they became available and paperwork came back, I went with an open short rifle (in this case one of my Vector 51s) doing the same. I still had a concealed handgun (or two, sometimes) but I wanted to make it clear to anyone watching that the best targets were at some other gun shop.

Yes, bad people want to target things of value - but even then they'll reasonably take easier, softer target. If someone had targeted that store or me personally, well, I was screwed anyway, it was just a fact of the job. Determined people with a plan and patience will screw up even the wary just doing their job more often than not.

It's also the same reason that I try not to go shooting alone as much any more, I want someone to cover my rear whenever possible out at the line.
If I'm alone, I typically drive out to change targets every time and bring the rifle with me in the car (and yes, you can drive out to do targets at our range).

My biggest fear when out and around isn't the determined, focused, experienced criminal - they're going to probably make anyone's day hell. It's the inexperienced retard who will start brandishing and shooting, and hopefully see I have a weapon and pick somewhere else or reconsider his actions.

If not, I have no children. My old lady knows I love her, and I try to be safe out there. If somebody's got to go, I pray it's not me but I don't leave children behind who have to be taken care of, I'm a virtual cripple with no hope of recovery. May the bad guy choose me instead of someone with a future and family to take care of.

Catherine
September 22, 2008, 07:31 AM
I do NOT think that Open Carry attracts CRIMINALS as some people think and have posted here. I think that it makes a CRIMINAL think twice about making you his V I C T I M!

Catherine

RDak
September 22, 2008, 07:39 AM
Yes, overall, you'd think it would deter attacks.

LKB3rd
September 22, 2008, 08:22 AM
I agree with TaurusOwner 100%. In reply to your question, I think our goverment and news media have done a pretty good job of projecting the image that anyone who openly carries is an unhinged anti-social type, or has a very violent itch. Prepsters Prius driving, granola munching, socialist neighbor is a prime example flaming Politcal Correctness. She'll obviously never carry but on her planet there's a cop on every corner.
I have a neighbor, whom I discussed open carry with, and she became annoyed and said "I don't want to see that." She has told me other times that she feels safer knowing that I have guns and am close by. So, she has an irrational fear of, and animosity towards guns, but hypocritically likes that I have them, in case someone ever assaults her, or what have you. "Cognitive dissonance."

Gentleman Ranker
September 22, 2008, 08:41 AM
As someone who is trying to make up his own mind about open carry, I don't see any evidence that carriers get targeted for crime more than anyone else does. I suspect that it is more a deterrent than not.

Open carry does seem to attract attention, though not as often as I would have thought. This story (http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum65/16367.html) from the opencarry.org forum seems more like the thing one would have to worry about -- some goof deciding it would be fun to play games with the Gun Nut(tm). But even that doesn't seem to be common.

The opencarry.org forums seem to be the best single place to look for evidence about open carry questions.

regards,

GR

NavyLCDR
September 22, 2008, 09:24 AM
How would you prove that open carry deters crime anyway? I guess you could poll all the convicts in prisons if they ever passed someone up because they were OC. Personally, without it being proven, I would like to give criminals some credit for IQ and think that it would be easier to rob someone not carrying a gun - that you could detect anyway. So I will continue to OC and hope that it deters the criminal rather than forcing me to defend myself against them.

NavyLCDR
September 22, 2008, 09:28 AM
Back to the OP... no I don't worry about being seen with weapons going into/out of the house. I've got to do that to go to the range anyway.

bnkrazy
September 22, 2008, 09:28 AM
I OC more and more each week. People see me taking guns to the range, etc. as well. I don't worry about people seeing me with guns. I think it helps break the stereotypes when people see other "normal" folk carrying and using guns responsibly.

moooose102
September 22, 2008, 09:37 AM
i think that open carrying will deter MOST criminals. not only from attacking you, but anyone in the vacinity. BUT, it may very well attract the criminal you really don't want, THE DESPERATE, VIOLENT CRIMINAL. if he/she is truly desperate. they wouldnt even think twice about killing you to get your gun. which they would see as a tool to attain their freedom.

jpruitt
September 22, 2008, 10:28 AM
The main reason is that I don't want anyone (neighbors, passersby, anyone) to know that I have firearms in my house.

I almost agree with you. I want people to know I have A gun. I just don’t want them to know I have lots of them.

As far as open carry, I think it would deter more criminals than it attracted, plus it’s a little quicker to bring the gun into action should it become necessary to do so. If I had the option I’d prefer open carry to concealed.

crebralfix
September 22, 2008, 10:39 AM
Almost every gun shop in Northern Virginia has employees that openly carry a handgun.

csmkersh
September 22, 2008, 10:54 AM
A likely scenario would be you, arriving home, walking into your house with your weapon in plain sight. It seems to me that if that occurs often enough, people might remark or remember such a thing. That's not something I'm comfortable with. Of course, they MIGHT suppose you were a peace officer, and that wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing.
Do those who open carry see this as a problem?

No, I don't see it as a problem even here in Texas. While I can't open carry on public property or property not belonging to me or under my control, I may legally open carry on my own property or business.

Here's the current law on unlawful carry/possession in Texas (http://tlo2.tlc.state.tx.us/statutes/docs/PE/content/htm/pe.010.00.000046.00.htm#46.02.00):

§ 46.02. UNLAWFUL CARRYING WEAPONS. (a) A person
commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or
recklessly carries on or about his or her person a handgun, illegal
knife, or club if the person is not:
(1) on the person's own premises or premises under the
person's control; or
(2) inside of or directly en route to a motor vehicle
that is owned by the person or under the person's control.
(a-1) A person commits an offense if the person
intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries on or about his or
her person a handgun in a motor vehicle that is owned by the person
or under the person's control at any time in which:
(1) the handgun is in plain view; or
(2) the person is:
(A) engaged in criminal activity, other than a
Class C misdemeanor that is a violation of a law or ordinance
regulating traffic;
(B) prohibited by law from possessing a firearm;
or
(C) a member of a criminal street gang, as
defined by Section 71.01.
(a-2) For purposes of this section, "premises" includes
real property and a recreational vehicle that is being used as
living quarters, regardless of whether that use is temporary or
permanent. In this subsection, "recreational vehicle" means a motor
vehicle primarily designed as temporary living quarters or a
vehicle that contains temporary living quarters and is designed to
be towed by a motor vehicle. The term includes a travel trailer,
camping trailer, truck camper, motor home, and horse trailer with
living quarters.
(b) Except as provided by Subsection (c), an offense under
this section is a Class A misdemeanor.
(c) An offense under this section is a felony of the third
degree if the offense is committed on any premises licensed or
issued a permit by this state for the sale of alcoholic beverages.

Picard
September 22, 2008, 10:55 AM
Since over 1/3 of Americans have guns in their homes, a criminal has a good chance of getting guns when breaking into a home. However, if someone knows you are armed, it will make them think twice before committing a crime against you.

A gun isn't something that I'm scared or shy to show others. I want others to see it as something normal, the way that I see it. Much damage is done to the RKBA movement because gun owners feel like they have to hide their tools. I don't know how that kind of thinking started.

Aran
September 22, 2008, 12:11 PM
I clean my guns out on the porch (fiancee doesn't like me spraying cleaning products inside) so everyone knows pretty much what I have anyhow.


Oddly, my neighbors don't talk to me... wonder why...

Mainsail
September 22, 2008, 12:26 PM
The main reason is that I don't want anyone (neighbors, passersby, anyone) to know that I have firearms in my house. A likely scenario would be you, arriving home, walking into your house with your weapon in plain sight.
Wouldn’t that statement apply to anything you are seen bringing into your house? I guess you could trade in your car or truck for a pinto wagon and make your wife and daughters wear a burka (unless they’re too ugly to matter), and live like a hermit. (How does one discreetly walk to the car with their long gun?) The truth is that anything can attract a criminal, robber, or rapist. Your sidearm says you’re not an easy target.

However, I believe they're fooling themselves if they think it's going to deter all criminals. In many cases, it will ATTRACT criminals.

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in armed robberies of gun shops, as well as armed robberies of gun shop/firing range employees and customers in the shop/range parking lots, or followed after they left and later robbed.
Can you provide any citation to support your statement? Not that there are robberies of these groups, but to your statement that there has been a significant increase in these incidents.

However, I believe they're fooling themselves if they think it's going to deter all criminals.
Other than this sentence, there is no such thing as an absolute argument. Absolutely nothing you do will deter ALL criminals. Open carry has a significantly greater chance of deterring a criminal than does concealed carry. I’ve never read anywhere that anyone thinks OC will deter all criminals, this argument is moot.


Concealed carry retains the element of surprise, and doesn't advertise to criminals that you've got a gun to steal.
The “element of surprise” is an armchair commando myth. Surprise is not now, and never in history has been, a defensive tactic. So unless you’re going out to offensively strike potential robbers by surprising them with a concealed weapon, that argument has no merit. There are times when concealing your sidearm may be preferable, but it’s never a sound defensive tactic.

Some wise words from another forum:
There are really only two possible outcomes to a gunfight:
A)Someone "wins" and someone "loses" - or 50% chance of survival
B)Both lose - or 0% chance of survival

If you consider the two options, you could say you have a 1 in 3 chance to be the "winner". I'd prefer to let my visible gun help me avoid a gunfight than let my concealed gun "surprise" somebody I end up in one with.

Majic
September 22, 2008, 03:00 PM
Concealed carry retains the element of surprise, and doesn't advertise to criminals that you've got a gun to steal.
True, but how are you going to take advantage of the surprise? Is the criminal going to just stand there and allow you to draw your weapon?
As for the original post, no I don't mind. If you have been around long enough you have probably seen me taking long guns to the range or hunting. For others they see me with that gun but do I have others? Are they going to risk doing a B and E to find out? I don't worry about every little detail. I just play the hand life deals to me.

jahwarrior
September 22, 2008, 03:08 PM
the only thing that OC attracts, from what i've seen, are LEOs who want to abuse their authority, to harrass anyone who chooses to OC.

Picard
September 22, 2008, 03:18 PM
the only thing that OC attracts, from what i've seen, are LEOs who want to abuse their authority, to harrass anyone who chooses to OC.

Only until more people OC so that the LEO's become aware of the laws regarding OC.

AntiqueCollector
September 22, 2008, 04:11 PM
I'll be open carrying my Colt Walker later today...and yes I've been hassled by the cops before. I'm not letting them intimidate me into losing my rights, nor should anyone else. If you want to open carry and it's legal, do so, being familiar with all applicable laws. If you want to conceal carry and you can legally, do so. I do both depending on weather, place, my feelings, etc. We shouldn't be disparaging each other over our preferred method of carry. Division is not good for us. Personally, I'm not worried about open carrying attracting criminals, I suspect the sight of a big handgun usually deters people and makes them move on to easier targets, and it gives me a quicker draw too. I know there are exceptions but they are rare, especially where I live (most crime here is drug dealer versus buyer, rival criminals killing each other, etc., not a whole lot of random stuff).

csmkersh
September 22, 2008, 04:15 PM
the only thing that OC attracts, from what I've seen, are LEOs who want to abuse their authority, to harrass anyone who chooses to OC.

Only until more people OC so that the LEO's become aware of the laws regarding OC.

This was a problem for a short while in the Manasas, VA area for a while last year or the year before. The answer was that gun owners decided to do an open carry protest and many began to OC in response. This then brought about a Duran Duran response by the Manasas PD of "No mas, por favor. No mas," and the harassment ended and OC carried the day.

Mr. James
September 22, 2008, 04:28 PM
Some outstanding responses here!

I do not worry especially about criminals targeting me or my home because I open carry. Inasmuch as it is even a factor, I suspect they would prefer a "softer" target.

Open carrying on a daily basis, I have had zero untoward events with neighbors, local police (who have had a checkered history with respect to open carry), or strangers at the market. I'm sure some roll their eyes and write me off as a jerk. I will not miss their company in the least. Like Majic, I try to play the hand I'm dealt, and leave others in peace.

JesseL
September 22, 2008, 05:00 PM
Another open carrier here.

For years it didn't even occur to me to worry about this stuff! I've seen other people open carrying since I was a small child, I started open carrying myself when I turned 21, and for years I never had or heard about it causing any problems.

I had no idea that people who open carry were harassed by police or that anyone worried about it being a criminal magnet until I started reading gun discussions on the internet.

I'm 30 now and the problems of open carry are still limited to the internet from my personal experience (I know some people have had some very real, very unpleasant encounters stemming form OC, but I haven't).

wyocarp
September 22, 2008, 07:47 PM
The main reason is that I don't want anyone (neighbors, passersby, anyone) to know that I have firearms in my house.

Like JesseL, I grew up thinking that most people had guns. Growing up in Wyoming, where it is common to see elk, deer, antelope, or moose in the backs of trucks or hanging in garages, it is easy to assume that most homes have guns.

When it comes down to the bottom line, we all have valuables in our homes. Most of the guns that people have are replaceable. So what is the difference between a $1500 gun and a $1500 tv, except that most of my guns have the added security of being in a safe which the average house crook has no idea of how to get into.

Like others have said, I think that most criminals are not completely stupid. They still fear for their life and I feel that most of them will choose an easier mark unless they are actually trying to get guns.

wyocarp
September 22, 2008, 07:50 PM
By the way, I open carry a lot and I think that few people even notice when I carry a small revolver or a black polymer auto.

c1ogden
September 22, 2008, 08:01 PM
It goes both ways. Many punks would avoid you if they could see that you were armed but those that didn't would be more prepared in thier attack.

In general, I think that the more people are seen carrying the more acceptable it will become and hopefully this will lead to elimination of the unConstitutional restrictions on where we can carry.

If it wouldn't cause a major commotion in my area I would open carry simply because its easier than having to always wear a jacket when everybody else is in a t-shirt and shorts. Of course, I live in NJ and open carry would lead to a police convention wherever I went so I just keep it concealed or leave it behind.

Defensory
September 24, 2008, 04:05 AM
Pair Robbed In Driveway After Visiting Gun Range

2 Semiautomatic Handguns Stolen, Police Say

OVIEDO, Fla. -- Two people were robbed in their driveway at gunpoint in Oviedo Sunday afternoon after police said they were targeted while leaving a gun range.

The robbery happened about 4:30 p.m. in the driveway of a house in the Kingsbridge West neighborhood, police said.

The unidentified victims were approached by four black males, who were described as being in their late teens, after returning home from the Central Florida Gun Range, according to police.

http://www.local6.com/news/10962467/detail.html
....

Defensory
September 24, 2008, 04:19 AM
Posted by crebralfix:
Almost every gun shop in Northern Virginia has employees that openly carry a handgun.

Yep, and those open carrying gun dealers in Virginia get robbed at gunpoint:

75 guns stolen in gun store robbery, Henry county Virginia

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=eac_1195262511

Mainsail
September 24, 2008, 11:54 AM
Pair Robbed In Driveway After Visiting Gun Range...

I don't understand your point with this story. OC is illegal in FL, and the story doesn't mention they were doing so. It sounds like the "element of surprise" didn't help them.

MinnMooney
September 24, 2008, 01:05 PM
I definately agree with Defensory :

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in armed robberies of gun shops, as well as armed robberies of gun shop/firing range employees and customers in the shop/range parking lots, or followed after they left and later robbed.

Not to mention armed robberies of shooters at unstaffed outdoor public ranges, some of whom were even murdered, such as THR's own Reverend McCalla (RIP).

Concealed carry retains the element of surprise, and doesn't advertise to criminals that you've got a gun to steal.

I've been around guns of all types for 55 years and have never had any desire to carry exposed for all to see unless I'm out in the woods.
The arguement that was made about carrying open is soooo much faster than concealed is hogwash. If a person practices occasionally, either way is fast. To brush your shirt-tail aside on your way to retrieve your weapon probably can't even be measured in milaseconds! It's a part of your hand/arm motion which is almost identical to retrieving your sidearm without a shirt-tail in the way. Very stupid arguement.

The idea about always being aware of your surroundings sounds a lot more "Tacti-cool" than reality. It just doesn't happen unless you're paranoid or in a situation which actually feels threatening. I'd bet just about anyone with evil on their mind could even surprise any of the Gunsite personnel. Anyone who thinks that they couldn't be surprised and disarmed is a wannabe ninja and kidding himself.

jrfoxx
September 24, 2008, 02:27 PM
I dont worry at all about people finding out I own/carry guns from me OC'ing, or from seeing me carry them to/from my car in cases when I go to the range. Why dont I worry? mainly, because my personal experiance is that people are VERY oblivious, and just dont even notice the gun(s) at all, and if they do, they assume I'm a cop. I have OC'd many times in Eugene (an ULTRA-liberal city of 200K+ people, and also home to 1 of the 2 states largets universities) and no one, LEO's standing right next to me included, have never so much as given me a second look (and yes, I pay careful attention, as I am intentionally watching, just for my own education and/or amusement, to see if nyone reacts or seems to even notice at all), an no one bats an eye, whispers, moves away, or says a word.

So, it boils down to people tend to be unobservant and oblivious, so you likely arent attracting nearly as much attention as you think, and of those that notice you carrying, likely just assume that you must be in law enforcement (as they likely assume if you werent, you wouldnt be carrying, and certainly not openly, because they likely think it's illegal for people to carry, or at least OC anyways, if they arent.) So, IMHO, any criminal who notices I own, or carry a gun, while he may REALLY want to steal them, is likely not going to act on it because 1) he is like everyone else and assumes I must be a cop, and criminals REALLY like to AVOID contact with cops, not initiate it, especially in a robbery, or, they, like anyone who isnt suicidal or pychotic, REALLY doesnt want to get shot and killed, so will avoid me knwing that may happen, since they know I own/carry a gun. They would much rather rob the old lady down the street who likely isnt armed, or even able to resist physically. Easy pickins, little to know risk.

Criminals arent entirely stupid. They can asses risk vs reward just like the rest of us, and will avoid as much risk as possible to get thier "reward". Why confront an armed, 30ish year old man, when there are elderly people, women, or people who at least arent 100% KNOW to be armed, etc that are "easier pickins" in thier eyes?

As for Defensory's example of gun stores or people coming from the range getting robbed. yep, it can happen. How many stories would you like me to post of stores other than gun shops getting robbed, or people who werent coming from the gun range getting robbed in thier driveway? happens all the time. All it proves is that no matter WHAT you do, or where you work, you CAN be the unlucky person that gets targeted.If there were ANY way to even be 90% sure we wouldnt be a victem, we'd all be doing it. But, there isnt any way to to even close to sure, no matter what you do (unless you want to turn your home into an impenetrable fortress, and NEVER set foot outside again) all you can do is mitigate to a level that YOU feel strikes the balance between being totally oblivious to risk, and shear paranoia and misery. That acceptable level will very be person, location, etc.


just my opinion, ymmv, and you (you not meaning anyone here specifically, the collective "you") have every right to beleive the opposite of me, and do what you think is best for you and yours.

CajunBass
September 24, 2008, 06:58 PM
Nope. Doesn't worry me a bit.

spuscg
September 24, 2008, 07:06 PM
when i get my own place reloading supplies will be in plain sight and a gunsafe will be seen........if your stupid enough to disregard the remington security sticker

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