How to Cope With Living Under the Witness Protection Program

Written by contributing writer
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People who live under the Witness Protection Program usually do so because their lives may be in jeopardy after testifying in a criminal case. Sometimes individuals take part and sometimes the whole family has to join. It is by no means an easy choice, since those under the Witness Protection Program must leave behind life as they know it. If you are in this situation, here are some things you should do.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Remember to use your alias name on a regular basis. Once you are part of the Witness Protection Program, you are provided with a brand new identity. That means you need to get used to hearing, speaking, signing and responding to your alternate name. This can be especially challenging for children, but let your kids know that they have to use their new names in order to prevent your whereabouts from being discovered.

  2. 2

    Be discreet. Perhaps you are used to being more open with other people, but this is no longer a luxury that is available to you. As long as you are under the Witness Protection Program, you have to be as low-key as possible. Be wary of involving yourself in clubs, special groups or organisations. Use caution when giving out any personal information and avoid doing anything that draws attention to you.

  3. 3

    Get a job and try to establish some semblance of "normalcy." Assimilate quietly into your workplace and community. Be friendly to your co-workers and neighbours, without allowing them to get too close.

  4. 4

    Resist the urge to call old friends or family members or invite them to your new digs. Don't even send them a letter, postcard or holiday gift. Doing so could alert those who wish to harm you to your location.

  5. 5

    Obey the law. If you commit crimes while under Witness Protection, it could result in getting you bounced from the program.

  6. 6

    Don't even think of sneaking back home for a visit. All it takes is for one person to inform your enemies that you are back in town to put you in immediate danger. Returning home is an unwise act that could be fatal.

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