Tag Archives: Mobile

Glastonbury Police offer advice to festival goers

As festival-goers gear up for this year’s Glastonbury Festival police in Avon and Somerset are offering some final tips and advice for a safe and crime free event.

Every year Avon and Somerset Police work closely with the festival organisers to ensure the event remains largely crime-free and a safe environment for all festival-goers.

Crime at the festival is generally low and the crime that does occur can be easily prevented. Police advise festival-goers to leave valuables at home and only take essential items to the festival with them.

If you do have to take valuable items with you make use of the free property lock-ups throughout the site and don’t leave anything valuable unattended in your tents. Register any valuable items on the Immobilise database before you leave for home so that if anything is lost or stolen police have a better chance of reuniting you with your items if they are recovered.

While out watching your favourite bands make sure you have your phone and wallet secured tightly away. Experience shows that it’s in big crowds and ‘mosh pits’ close to stages that the thieves are more likely to target you.

Personal safety and illegal substances:  No matter what myths you may have heard about police having a policy at Glastonbury of allowing people to smoke cannabis or take small amounts of other drugs, it is not true. Police have a zero tolerance policy to illegal substances and will be relentless in combating drug-related crime.

The law at Glastonbury is exactly the same as any other city, town or street in the rest of the United Kingdom when it comes to possession and use of an illegal substance. If you are found to be in possession of drugs at the festival you face arrest and prosecution as well as eviction from the site.

Contacting police at the Festival: Finally, if at the festival you do need to contact officers, the best thing to do is visit the 24-hour police station on site at the Festival. This is situated to the north of the festival site along with the other emergency services.

If you need to contact police in an emergency however always call 999.

Officers will be patrolling the site throughout the festival offering a reassuring and highly visible presence and are more than happy to chat to festival goers about their concerns. Officers will be loaded with crime prevention freebies to give away to festival-goers throughout the event.

To receive updates from the police during the festival on anything from traffic problems to beat surgeries then register for text alerts by texting ‘GLASTO’ to 81003. Everyone who registers for alerts will be entered into a prize draw to win a Sony PSP (full terms and conditions available on the police’s Glastonbury microsite – www.glastonburypolice.org).

To register on the Immobilise Database follow these instructions:
Key *#06# on your phone’s keypad to view your IMEI number.

Register by text: Then text REG followed by your IMEI number to 83010 – and Immobilise will reply with your account details and instructions. You will be charged a one-off 25p charge for the return text message.

Alternatively; register online: Visit www.immobilise.com and register for free.

To read the source article in full please go to: http://www.glastonburypolice.org/news/Details.aspx?nsid=20720#nsu-1

Immobilise helps reduce mobile phone thefts

stolenmobilephonesThe Northamptionshire Evening Telegraph has reported that mobile phone theft rates have been steadily decreasing throughout the county thanks to forensic property marking schemes, encouraging people to use the security features on their phones and advising people to register their phones on www.immobilise.com.

However Crime prevention officer Paul Golley said people weren’t doing enough to protect themselves from thieves and against robbery:

We’d urge people not to show off their mobile phones or leave them unattended in public places like pubs and restaurants. People are advised not to use them while walking in public places as you are more prone to robbery.

We’d remind motorists not to leave phones in their cars and people should switch their phones to vibrate if they think their phone might bring them unwanted attention.

The number of mobile phone thefts in north Northamptonshire stood at 1,482 for the period 2006 to 2007. In the following year they dropped to 1,446 and the latest annual figure was 1,291.

To read the source article in full please go to: The Northamptionshire Evening Telegraph

Compulsory registration of mobile phones in the UK

The concept of making everyone register their handset in the UK is greatly misunderstood and is being hyped up by the press. Did you know that any contract mobile phone owner’s information can already be accessed by the Police using either a request under the RIPA or DPA procedures? So why should be people using PAYG phones not be subject to the same system? this is all this is about and it closes a loophole used by criminals that make it harder for the Police to identify stolen handsets or handsets used in connection with dubious activities. The only argument surely is whether the owner’s information is subject to the safeguards afforded by RIPA. If you use the DVLA registration of cars as a proof of concept, the Police can tap in your registration number and see the owner’s details in a heartbeat without having to make any formal requests so why not do the same with mobile phones?

Check before you buy and only then you shall be rewarded

I have just been watching BBC News and one of their features was ‘Why shopping online could reward’.

The feature really focused on the fact that shoppers who like to spend their money online could also be earning at the same time and used an example from a woman who would only purchase items once she had sold a few on eBay and made a small profit.  Great example of how online shopping can really work well with the current credit crunch. However, I do wish the BBC had highlighted some of the risks involved in online shopping, like CNBC have done.

Yesterday we launched in the US and have already seen some coverage including from the Denver Post and it states we aim to curb the cybercrime of selling suspect second-hand goods. Hopefully there will be more to follow.

Anyway, hopefully the USA launch will be just as successful as the UK. According to the US Census Bureau the population of USA currently stands at 304,381,960 with:
• One birth every  7 seconds
• One death every 13 seconds
• One international migrant (net) every 29 seconds
• Net gain of one person every… 10 seconds

From the global population of internet users 27% are in the US and having read a lot of online articles and blogs e-fencing is proving to be a problem which the US are struggling to control. E-fencing laws have been discussed as being essential to combat organised retail crime. However, CheckMEND should now be an answer to their prayers, so let’s see how it goes.

This is what we do best and we have had plenty of stories from people who didn’t discover CheckMEND in time…

For example; Andrew Gudelajtis, from Mansfield, bought a Vodafone Nokia mobile phone from eBay for his wife. The phone arrived in a sealed box and was sold as being brand new, but after using it for six weeks the mobile phone stopped working.

He decided that he should use CheckMEND to check the IMEI number on its database. The search came back and identified the phone as being stolen or blocked. Unfortunately Andrew was then unable to re-trace the eBay seller and is left with a phone that doesn’t work and at the moment he is pursuing Vodafone to see if they can help – either by unblocking the phone or chasing the seller.

Hopefully he will have some luck at some point, but it is a great example of why you should use ‘CheckMEND before you buy’ or insist on sellers having a CheckMEND report. Or as I mentioned within my last post we should push for eBay to insist all sellers conduct a CheckMEND report!

Any questions – please fire them this way!

The Serial Entrepreneur

For those of you who have heard about it, but wondered what CheckMEND is and how it came about I thought I would give you the low down on why and how it all began.

Me, founder of CheckMEND.com

Lost my phone!

In 2000 I lost my phone on the London Underground and went to the lost property office to try to find it. However, I was then faced with the task of providing a serial number or what we also know as the IMEI number. But in 2000  no one had really heard of what an IMEI number was let alone know their own!

Anyway after eventually finding my IMEI number and recovering my phone, I realised that all modern consumer electronic products have a unique serial number and that without them there was little way of distinguishing one item from another. Thus, I formed the idea that there was a need in the market for a pre-loss or theft registration service containing these serial numbers.

Previous career path

My career has always involved providing services to the consumer, back in 2000, at the age of 40; I sold my chain of restaurants, bars and leisure facilities, with the aim of taking early retirement and relaxing after a very full working life… until the idea for CheckMEND hit me.

I decided to start up a company called Recipero (latin meaning to retain or recover), with a view to building a company that provided a range of products and services based on the accumulation, organisation and analysis of information relating to personal property ownership, associated criminality, fraud and illegal trading.

The simple pre-loss registration database:

The starting point was with a simple pre-loss registration database, but it quickly became apparent that there was value in the analysis of the data and potential to provide HPI-type data for consumer electronics.  This was reinforced at the time with the explosion of online auction sites and the willingness of people to buy and sell second-hand goods online. All at the same time as the huge increase in the theft of mobile phones and other mobile devices such as laptops, ipods and the like.
The next three years was spent populating the MEND data warehouse and building partnerships across the mobile industry, with the likes of Carphone Warehouse and mobile phone networks. The police forces were also a vital partner for me.
Eventually, the system grew and now contains billions of pieces of discrete information and is accessed over a million times a month by the mobile phone industry, all UK Police forces, major insurers, the second hand trade, recyclers and the public.
CheckMEND.com was launched in 2006 and the CheckMEND database is now used extensively by second hand trade and the public the most common use of CheckMEND by the general public is for when they are buying or selling items from online auction sites like ebay.

Taking it international:

I can now safely say the company is well established and we are starting to focus on business outside the UK. 2008 will see two new launches for CheckMEND.com. One in the US, which the Recipero and CheckMEND teams are extremely excited about, with the U.S. being the largest market for consumer electronics. Not only that, we have already begun the process of launching in Asia too.

Obviously the road to where we are today didn’t all run as smoothly as suggested above, many a challenge was faced and problem overcome, but this is the CheckMEND story… so far…

Have a look at the youtube video : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zcm9VFNvuQ

What’s Hot… stolen mobile phones

Following our last post on £5 billion stolen goods for sale online, it seems that online auction sites are taking the heat, but as Identity Resolution Daily points out, if they reduce, what is termed as e-fencing – selling stolen goods online -  they will lose most of their revenue.

However, if these auction sites ignore the statistics, and continue to allow themselves to be marketplaces for selling ‘stolen goods’ will mean that they will soon become high profile case studies for us.  Beware – You will get caught

There has been much discussion within the mobile tech community on whether CheckMEND is a good deal which our very own bat phone cleared up:

Hi, just to let you know CheckMEND ‘trade’ account is such only because that’s who they think would be interested in it. In fact the vat number and co number are optional at registration and they only thing ‘trade’ about it is a minimum £25 worth of checks purchased at registration. At the moment though you get 50 checks for this so paying only £0.50 instead of £2.99 for your first fifty checks and only £1 per check after that.

Of course reselling checks is against the terms and all your certificates will have the account holders details on so giving them away becomes awkward too but if you may check several phones in future (the credits never expire) it’s a good deal.

Declaration: I work for the parent company but this isn’t an advert, I just want to put right the misunderstanding about trade accounts. I’ll pass on the confusion and perhaps the web guys will modify the website.

We have some hard hitting facts for you, collated from our CheckMEND database.

Mobile Phone stats from CheckMEND

  • Of the £5bn Stolen goods for sale online, it is estimated that £2.6bn of that can be attributed to mobile phones
  • Of all the checks carried out on CheckMEND over the last 18 months 67% were made on mobile phones. Which equates to 6,700,000 checks made through CheckMEND, were to check the IMEI number of a mobile phone
  • Out of every town in the UK you are most likely to be sold a stolen mobile phone in Leicester

CheckMEND has identified 3,522 stolen handsets in the last 23 days, that’s 153 a day and from these checks, it indicates the place you are most likely to be offered a stolen phone in order of likelihood are:

Leicestershire

Greater London – Finsbury Park, North London -600 policemen arrested 70 people!

Birmingham

Manchester

Cambridge

The Nokia N95 is the most checked phone as it is the top end of the price range for second hand phones, so watch out n95 users…

Please remember to protect your mobile phone and register your belongings free with immobilise www.immobilise.com.

After registering your property stolen your information will be fed to our CheckMEND database and we can stop all e-fencing criminals from re-selling your property.