Recipero Device Crime & Fraud Prevention: 2023 In Review

At Recipero, we leverage data to combat property crime and fraud globally. As a trusted partner to law enforcement, insurers, retailers, recyclers, carriers, and individual consumers, we play a vital role in safeguarding assets and protecting revenues.

The Device Crime & Fraud Prevention infographic provides a snapshot of our impact over the past year. From preventing bad transactions to assisting in the recovery of lost or stolen items, it illustrates how our data-driven solutions contribute to safer trading and a more secure environment for all.

You can find out more about our data sets and how we help to fight fraud and prevent crime by reading about Recipero’s Crime Reduction Ecosystem.

Safe And Sound: How To Have A Secure Festival Experience This Summer

Summer has finally arrived, and that festival you’ve been eagerly awaiting is just around the corner!

The UK is a nation of festival-goers. A study by UK Music shows that over 37 million people attended UK festivals and concerts in 2022!

Festivals are all about letting go and having a blast, but with so many people around, they come with unique security challenges.

It’s so easy to get swept up in the excitement of planning travel and other logistics that you might forget about securing your valuables.

Phones top the list of at-risk items at UK festivals, with over one in ten festival goers having lost, damaged or had a device stolen.

As with anything, planning is key to having a great time without any nasty surprises. Fortunately, there are steps you can take before and during the event to ensure a safer, more enjoyable experience.

Friends making selfies at the summer festival

Before you go…

Here are our top tips for securing your possessions before heading off to soak up the vibes.

  • Mark & register your valuables. Almost all of us will take a phone to an event, and it’s crucial to register it before you set off. Dial *#06# on your handset to reveal the 15-digit IMEI number(s) on the screen. Create an account on Immobilise.com and register the device’s make, model, IMEI, and serial numbers. It only takes a few minutes and is completely FREE. Add other identifiable marks using a UV pen or an asset label for an extra layer of security. Should you lose your phone and it is found, this will help the authorities return it to you. If you are taking other devices, such as a smartwatch or camera, register these as well.

  • Note important details. Write down the contact details for a friend and a family member you can reach, including your phone’s provider and your bank account information, in case you need to cancel cards or report the loss or theft of your phone. Keep these details on a piece of paper in a safe place—separate from your phone!

  • Check your travel insurance policy. If you have one, review it. You might be covered for trips in the UK lasting more than two nights, but ensure it includes tent stays.
    Additionally, consider personal possessions insurance. Check for policy exclusions or excess payments. This is often an add-on to contents insurance, so verify if you already have it with your home insurance.

  • Check if the venue is cashless. If not, use on-site cashpoints rather than carrying large amounts of cash.

When you’re there…

Following a few basic rules will help you enjoy the experience and keep yourself and your belongings safe.

  • Keep valuables out of sight. Don’t store them in outer pockets; instead, keep them in a secure location like a zippered pocket or money belt.

  • Use lockers if available. Some festivals offer free lockers where you can store items that might be targeted by thieves, like bikes or car keys.

  • Keep valuables to a minimum. If possible, leave your valuable phone at home! Consider taking an older phone instead of your latest model. Phone theft is common at festivals, so if you must take your phone, protect it with a passcode and turn on location tracking such as ‘Find My iPhone’. Additionally, consider using a crossbody lanyard case, making it much harder for someone to snatch it from you. Check out the latest phone lanyards of 2024 in the review below: Top 10 Best Phone Lanyards in 2024 – FindThisBest (UK)

  • Protect your phone. Use a waterproof cover to prevent damage from spills, being dropped in a puddle, or even a pint!

  • Secure valuables at night. Keep wallets, phones, cameras, car keys, etc., at the bottom of your sleeping bag where they’re inaccessible to others.

  • Be mindful of your surroundings. In the moment, you could get separated from your friends in a crowd. Knowing the layout will help you get your bearings. Make a note of where festival staff or security points are.

  • Look out for each other. Whether it’s your friends or other festival-goers, stay vigilant. If you see someone struggling, offer support by alerting the event staff.

  • Consider using a safeguarding app. These allow you to share your location with trusted contacts.
    Examples include:
    Imabi Community: a free tool for real-time safety alerts.
    Imabi Guardian: a free personal safety app.

  • Have a meeting place. Agree on a spot to meet up if you get separated. Just having a plan can reduce stress.

Festivals are tons of fun, and with careful planning, you can relax and enjoy them to the fullest. Get ready for an unforgettable festival experience!

Audience with hands in the air at a music festival

For more great tips on festival safety, check out Festival Safe.  

Secure Your Garden And Protect Your Home

When it comes to security, many people focus solely on their homes and the vehicles parked outside. However, gardens are often a primary target for thieves.

According to a 2022 study by Sunlife, a staggering 9 out of 10 household thefts occur in the garden (Ideal Home).

The ‘Hot’ Targets Lurking In Your Garden
Modern gardens are often filled with valuable items, making them lucrative targets for thieves, especially during the summer when we tend to leave them outside for convenience.

Ideal Home reported that the most frequently stolen items from outdoor living spaces are quality garden furniture, ornaments, power tools, lawnmowers, BBQs, and ladders (2022 data).

Securing Access Points To Your Home
While we like to view our gardens as peaceful sanctuaries, they are also often the first line of defence against burglars looking to gain access to our homes.

According to the ONS, in the year running up to March 2023, there were 525 burglaries a day in England and Wales; that’s one every 165 seconds!

To avoid becoming a statistic, remember that securing your garden not only prevents theft of the possessions you keep in it, but it also makes it much harder for intruders to access your home.


Two-Pronged Security Approach
To secure your garden effectively, consider a two-pronged approach:

  1. Secure high-value items.
  2. Make your garden less attractive to thieves overall.

Be Proactive!
Thankfully, there are plenty of proactive ways to deter burglars from considering your property an easy target.

Think like an intruder. Would you steal something that is clearly marked and registered to the owner? Probably not. Thieves aim to avoid anything that may link them to a crime and perceive it as not worth the risk.

Ways To Help Deter Theft:

  1. Register valuables: Immobilise.com is the world’s largest free register of possession ownership details and is searchable by all UK police. It is a powerful tool in the fight against property crime. Register your power tools, garden equipment, bicycles, and all other valuables with unique identifiers such as serial numbers or engravings. If your items don’t have identifiers, use a marking product like a UV pen, asset labels, or an etching tool.

  2. Visible warnings: Use window stickers and labels on items of property to warn potential thieves that your items are protected, both in vehicles and buildings. Often, the mere presence of a warning is enough to deter a break-in.

  3. Bikes: Bikes can be high-value, low-risk targets for potential thieves. If unprotected, they’re easy to resell in locations away from the theft. Statistics published by roadandmountainbikereviews.co.uk reveal that a bike is stolen every minute in the UK and fewer than 5% are returned to their owners. If you own one or more bikes, follow these steps:
  • Register them on Immobilise.com – our useful video below will guide you through the simple process.
  • Fit a security tag.
  • Use visible deterrents.

Enhancing Garden Security

A criminal will nearly always take the path of least resistance. They will choose the house with the overgrown hedge, unlocked gate or the house that has places to hide around it while they scope out what is worth stealing. Don’t let that property be yours!

We’ll explore some key ways to secure your garden:

  1. Boundaries: Ensure your fences and walls are secure. Adding a trellis or planting thorny climbers like Berberis, Hawthorn, Holly, or Pyracantha can be effective deterrents. These plants can also trap thieves, leaving behind valuable clues like torn clothes or DNA.

  2. Gates and pathways: Always keep gates locked and use high-quality locks. Gravel pathways can deter intruders due to the noise they make when walked on.

  3. Home entry points: Keep windows and doors closed when you’re not around. Installing proximity detectors, security lights, or cameras can add an extra layer of security.

  4. Sheds and outbuildings: Regular maintenance is crucial. A Which? report highlights that 22,500 households fall victim to shed burglary annually, with power tools and bikes being common targets (2019). Ensure your shed has strong locks and hinges, and consider motion sensors and security lights. Failing to meet the minimum standard or maintenance condition for your shed could result in an insurance claim being rejected if you’re targeted by criminals.

  5. Garden offices: Garden offices are becoming much more common. With computers and other expensive devices often left inside, it’s essential to secure the building. Check that windows and doors close properly and that the locks work efficiently. Consider adding an alarm system or CCTV and security lighting. Mark all your valuables with your postcode, register them on immobilise.com, and use deterrent stickers to let thieves know they are traceable.

Extra Steps You Can Take:

  • Be community-minded: As with many things, there’s strength in numbers, and this applies to home and garden security, too. Think about joining a Neighbourhood Watch scheme or just agree to look out for each other’s property, especially when a house is empty.

  • Avoid sharing your absence on social media: Some opportunists use social media to gauge when houses are vacant. Don’t post those holiday photos until you get home!

Summary
Securing your garden and everything in it makes it a much less attractive target and is a vital step in protecting your property.

Ensure your outdoor space remains a haven of peace and not an entry point to your home!

Immobilise Sponsor Police UK Disability CIC Multi-Sport Event For Recovering Police Community Members

We are thrilled to announce that the Immobilise team will be heading to the University of Nottingham in early August to support the inaugural Police UK Disability Multi-Sport event.

About The Event

This unique event aims to promote health and well-being through sports recovery. The adaptive sports offered are fully inclusive and open to serving and former officers and staff who are coping with mental health-related disorders, physical disabilities, or neurodiversity.

Participants will have the opportunity to try out Badminton, Sitting Volleyball, Table Tennis, Wheelchair Basketball, and Wheelchair Rugby.

Life-Saving Results

Sarah, a beneficiary of this not-for-profit community initiative, describes her experience as life-changing:

“The impact that playing sports, especially Wheelchair Rugby, has had on me is profound. Coming to terms with my illness has been extremely difficult. Having a team of like-minded people who understand what being disabled in the police means is beyond anything I could have dreamed of. It has given me a new zest for life, the courage to embrace my new normal, and pride in being part of the disabled community.

PUKDS has shown me there is still work to do and many more members of the police family who need help like I did. The support from this team and Gary has been life-saving. The feeling I get on the court, knowing I have my team behind me, is fantastic. When we huddle and shout ‘Police UK’ at the top of our lungs, I get a shiver down my spine. My life has been immeasurably changed, and I am grateful every day for this opportunity. Thank you, Dylan and the team—you saved me.”

Event Sponsorship

Through the shared goal of crime prevention, Immobilise has had a close relationship with the police for over two decades through the National Mobile Property Register (NMPR). This connection and the remarkable work accomplished through the initiative have led to sponsorship and support from Immobilise.

Gary Callier, Founder and Managing Director of Police UK Disability Sport CIC, comments:

“The Police UK Disability Sport CIC Multi-Sport event is designed to provide a safe environment whilst giving everyone the opportunity to take part in a variety of sports, managed by qualified coaches. This builds confidence and a sense of community through sports recovery.

The sponsorship provided by Immobilise is a key factor in PUKDS being able to showcase these sports on such an accessible platform. The venue allows us to run each sport simultaneously, enabling everyone to participate in as many sessions across all the sports as they wish.

The sponsorship also allows us to make this event completely free for all participants and helps facilitate all the police charities and other organisations to exhibit their products and services to the police community. All share a common mission: to provide the best possible support to officers and staff when they need it most.

To put it simply, without the sponsorship from Immobilise, PUKDS would not be able to showcase these fantastic sports in the way that we are able to.”

Event Details

  • Date: Saturday 3rd & Sunday 4th August 2024
  • Venue: David Ross Sports Village, University of Nottingham
  • Time: 10 AM to 6 PM each day
  • Sports on Offer: Badminton, Sitting Volleyball, Table Tennis, Wheelchair Basketball, Wheelchair Rugby

More Information

The PUKDS is a self-funded, not-for-profit registered community interest company.

For more information about the PUKDS Sport CIC event, or to sign up for membership, visit www.policeukdisabilitysportcic.co.uk.