Malaysia is considered high-risk for crime. Opportunistic criminals operate throughout the region and will target individuals who appear unaware of their surroundings. Petty crimes, including pickpocketing, theft, and harassment from gangs, is common. Kidnap for ransom is a particular concern in locations dominated by terrorists and criminal groups in east Sabah. Foreign visitors are at risk of being targeted when traveling to the resort islands.
Thieves on motorcycles are known to conduct snatch and grabs, typically targeting vehicles that are held in traffic or at road junctions, those traveling solo in a vehicle may become more vulnerable.
Road travel in Malaysia is considered dangerous, and road traffic collisions (RTCs) are frequent. Local driving laws are generally not enforced, resulting in careless, aggressive driving behaviors. Driving in the region can be unpredictable with the potential to become dangerous very quickly.