Crime and Dangers
Kuala Lumpur is generally a safe city but snatch thefts happen often enough to need extra precautions. You also need to watch out for pickpockets in crowded areas like shopping malls, train platforms or while taking public transport.
Keep your bag close to you when walking and avoid carrying it on the side nearest a busy road or intersection. If in a car, keep your bag on the floor in front of you as snatch thieves are known to break windows to steal bags left on seats.
Avoid wearing gold chains or bangles as they are also a popular target for thieves. Stick to costume jewellery and leave your more expensive accessories at home.
Like most cities, standard safety precautions come into play. Avoid back alleys especially at night, stick to public areas with lots of people and avoid ostentatious displays of wealth.
Taking public transport
In general, buses are safe modes of transport though avoid being alone at bus and taxi stands late at night. In a taxi, the driver’s information should be displayed on the front passenger seat and if it does not match the actual driver, best take another cab.
On the subject of taxis, avoid sitting in the front seat as it is more customary for women to sit in the back. It also avoids misunderstandings as prostitutes are known to sit up front to proposition drivers and your driver might misinterpret your intentions.
Trains are also generally safe in the city, with the local Komuter train service offering women-only carriages. Stay alert and be mindful of your surroundings; some stations are poorly lit at night and snatch thieves often lurk near parking lots.
Police and emergency numbers
The emergency number in Malaysia is 999 and 112 on mobile phones.
Make a police report as soon as possible if you are a victim of theft or any other crime. Passersby should be able to direct you to the nearest police station. Legally, it should not matter which police station you lodge your report as the demarcation of territorial jurisdiction is merely for administrative purposes. So if you wish to instead lodge a police report at a station near your hotel, it should not be a problem.