Category Archives: Immobilise

Register and protect your business assets and technology with Immobilise

Immobilise is not just for individuals. We’re here to support small and medium enterprises too. You should register tools, fixtures and fittings, computers, phones, electronic or electrical components, retail stock – in fact, any item that your business owns.

Remote working from home in the kitchen with a company laptop.

Of course, each item must be uniquely identifiable. Most electronic devices will have an inherent serial number, but for those that don’t, you can utilise any asset marking methods you prefer – labels, engraving, RFID tags, stamps, punches, embossing – whatever is best suited to your products and processes. Immobilise supports all asset marking methods from all manufacturers; we even have some of our own that you may buy from shop.immobilise.com.

Register a new account at immobilise.com under the name of a business principal or manager; we recommend using a group email address that several people have access to rather than an individual, but it’s up to you. As a business, you’re likely to have more items to register than individuals, so we’ve provided a spreadsheet template, downloadable from your account that helps you register hundreds of things at once. If you’re already using an internal asset register, you may even be able to export your data in the same format before uploading to your account.

Company tech can be registered on immobiise.com – It’s completely FREE.

If you mark something as lost or stolen on your account, it’s reflected in real-time to national police systems. This unique integration ensures that if police encounter your property, they can return it to you quickly. Of course, if they have someone in possession of property stolen from you, this also provides valuable evidence to detain or even prosecute someone.

While the spreadsheet template makes adding multiple items to your account a breeze, once there, they need managing. It’s no good recording an item as yours once it is legitimately sold. With hundreds, perhaps thousands of items or rapidly changing stock profiles, this can become a chore. For this situation, we have a low-cost service that delivers additional benefits and peace of mind.

AssetWatch

Real-time monitoring for mobile devices and technology

This service receives daily files from your existing asset management or stock control systems, recording identifying serial numbers and remaining synchronised with your systems without manual intervention.

AssetWatch Approved Data Partner Logo.

Being always up to date enables functionality that an Immobilise account cannot deliver. Every AssetWatch record tells us that you still own that item, whether it be the subject of a lease, rental agreement, provided to an employee or merely sitting in unsold stock. In all these cases, you would not want to see the item ‘out in the wild’, cited in an insurance claim or in possession of someone in police custody. All these events indicate that the item is not where it ought to be and so we notify you in real-time of these occurrences. Also, thanks to AssetWatch’s unique integration with CheckMEND, the world’s leading second-hand trade due-diligence service, we even prevent the item from being traded.

Use cases

Your retail outlet keeps a small stock of valuable consumer electronics. The local manager charged with securing and managing that stock is less than honest and is manipulating the system to their ends. They have the necessary access to stock management, and exceptions so can easily hide misdeeds. However, taking a device that is recorded on AssetWatch round the corner to the nearest second-hand trader results in that trader rejecting the sale when they run their due-diligence check. Not only that but the sale attempt is recorded and you notified of the time, date, place and item. You know that item has not been sold but now you know it’s been stolen! AssetWatch has been instrumental in identifying employee theft and benefits from being outside the normal controls within businesses.

For equipment out on rental, a similar same thing may happen. A bad actor reports to you that the item was stolen from a site or vehicle; perhaps they make a police report too in an attempt to convince you of their plight but when a sale is attempted, the date, time and in many cases, CCTV evidence will expose the crook.

Finally, straight up employee theft. The valuable laptop or phone you have provided them to do their job and an employee in need of fast cash. They try to trade the item, but it’s the trader rejects it and an automated alert is sent to you. Perhaps they succeed at the next less diligent trader, and now they report it stolen expecting the company to replace it and make an insurance claim. The times don’t add up with the first offer before the report of theft and the trader holding identifiable evidence of the seller.

In short, AssetWatch tells us the item should not be seen in trade. We use that to prevent sale among thousands of diligent traders and alert you to any attempts. In many cases, we’re telling you that your business has been a victim of theft before your stock checks or loss prevention manager would otherwise have a clue. AssetWatch achieves this while also delivering all the repatriation opportunities and benefits of an Immobilise registration.

Protecting trades’ tools and depriving criminals of cash

All theft is distressing for the victim and often costly but perhaps none more so than tool theft from tradespeople. You’ve amassed the right tools for every job over several years then one day, they’re all gone in an instant, stolen from a site, your van, or your workshop. Aside from the cost of replacement, some may be irreplaceable. Tools you’ve had since being an apprentice or gifted to you by a respected mentor can be as treasured as family heirlooms.

You already know the well-trodden advice to deter theft;

  • Bring tools indoors overnight;
  • Use uprated locks and storage safes;
  • Always enable your alarm;
  • But less obvious is the importance of marking your tools.

Power tools, in particular, have serial numbers – record these as belonging to you on a secure register. The police recover thousands of tools every month, but they cannot return most as their owners are unknown. In addition to recording, clearly mark your tools, vehicles, and premises warning would-be thieves that your property is traceable.

Protect your tools with Immobilise

Immobilise – The UK’s national property register, is integrated with police systems, FREE to use, and can record serial numbers or the numbers of marking products and labels from Immobilise or any other marking product. Whatever physical marking method you choose, ensuring it’s registered at immobilise.com is the best way to maximise your chances of return.

Registration on Immobilise enables the return of your property and helps you to expedite insurance claims with accurate information. Also, a simple click, reporting an item as stolen will prevent its trade at thousands of reputable second-hand traders across the UK and mindful buyers from auction sites who make use of the world’s leading property due-diligence service, CheckMEND.com.

In a typical month, CheckMEND is used to protect buyers in over 5 million transactions each month. In a typical month, CheckMEND prevents over £30m of stolen property from being traded, and Immobilise is uniquely integrated with that system.

If you are a victim of theft, your registration and report on Immobilise prevents the thief from profiting, gives the police evidence of a suspect’s wrongdoing and ultimately, helps get your property back. Register now or login to an existing account on Immobilise.

It’s National Home Security Month; Time to think about home security!

With the darker nights soon to start drawing in, it’s a good time to think about enhancing your home security. National crime data shows homes without security measures are 5 times more likely to be burgled than those with. We must deter burglars from targeting our precious homes and valuable contents. Taking just a few simple steps can make a huge difference in keeping your home safer.

National Home Security Month, October 2020.

Step 1

Deter burglars and keep your property secure at all time

  • Lock your doors properly. It sounds so simple, but most burglars get in through windows and doors that aren’t appropriately locked or have flimsy mechanisms. Be sure to invest in strong, visible locks.
  • Install an alarm. Nothing puts burglars off more than an alarm going off.
  • Use timers on your light switches and consider getting get a Fake TV product.

Step 2

Remember to lock everything up and keep anything of worth out of sight

  • Keep expensive jewellery in a locked safe
  • Ensure valuables are not on display through windows 
  • Don’t discuss going-away plans on social media. Burglars are likely to live in your surrounding neighbourhood and may even be part of your social network.
  • If you do go away, ask someone you trust if they can check on your property for you and take in your post. 

Step 3

Register on Immobilise, it’s FREE!

  • Register your property at immobilise.com and put warning labels in prominent places such as downstairs windows that let burglars know your property is easily traceable.
  • Once registered, should any of your property be found or recovered, police can easily return it to you.
  • Having a list of everything to hand for an insurance claim is some comfort if you find yourself having to make a claim. 
  • Immobilise offers many affordable and easy to use products to help mark your property, meaning they will become much easier to identify if recovered. Click to visit the Immobilise shop

What can you do to minimise your risk of buying a stolen phone?

It was great to read about successful businesses in this article from the BBC about buying second-hand smartphones. 

Second-hand smartphones are good for the environment and often represent real bargains. As with any used purchase, though it is essential to take steps to protect yourself and minimise the chances of buying a dud. 

A person checking whether a smartphone has a significant used history on CheckMEND.com

Used phones may have been involved in frauds from ID theft involving bogus airtime contracts to fake retailer returns and fraudulent insurance claims.  In addition of course to the all-too-common burglary, robbery, and more serious crimes. 

What can you do to minimise your risk of buying a stolen phone?

  • Always ask the seller for the IMEI and Manufacturer’s serial number of the phone – if they have many units to sell they may not know this until actual despatch. Still, a private or small volume seller should always be able and willing to provide this. 
  • Use the numbers to run a check for yourself at CheckMEND.com. This will let you know if there is any record that the phone is lost, stolen, or the subject of an insurance claim, police report, or corporate ownership that may affect your ability to obtain the legal title. 
  • Better still, ask the seller for a copy of the CheckMEND certificate produced when they first received the phone. The best sellers do this as part of their business routinely and again will be happy to provide it. An advantage here is that you may check the certificate’s authenticity free of charge by entering its number at checkmend.com/uk/verify.
  • Confirm the IMEI and the serial number of the phone that arrives matches what the seller said they were sending. 

In a typical month, traders using CheckMEND avoid buying £35m worth of stolen property. Don’t become the second victim of a phone crime, insist on CheckMEND.

1 in 5 Students fall victim to property crime

It may surprise you to learn that according to the National Union of Students as many as one in five students fall victim to property crime whilst at college or university. 

Thieves know that student residences are full of expensive gear; laptops, tablets, phones, bikes and cameras which provide rich pickings. In fact, the average break-in costs £900 to repair the damage and replace belongings.

A lot of theft is opportunistic – a few simple steps can be enough to make thieves think twice and move on. 

  • When you go out, make sure all windows and doors are locked. It’s an obvious one but do double check!
  • Check windows for vulnerabilities. Make sure they’re robust, secure and fitted with locks. If they’re not, speak to your landlord or letting agent. 
  • Don’t advertise your valuables to thieves. Ensure your valuables are not visible through windows. 
  • Register your possessions at Immobilise.com. It’s FREE and provides the simplest way to return your property if found after loss or theft. 
  • Keep your gate shut and bolted at all times. Make sure bins don’t make it easy for burglars to climb over walls or fences. 
  • Simulate occupancy with light timers or products like a FakeTV. 
  • Get insurance. It is tempting to save money, but it’s a false economy. Make sure it covers all your stuff. 
  • Bikes should be kept int he school’s designated areas and kept secured with a D-lock to an immovable object such as a ground-mounted loop. Don’t forget to register the bike at Immobilise.com

Registering your property at Immobilise.com is FREE. You can register property irrespective of any 3rd party labelling used; it’s all accepted!

For 20% off all Immobilise marking products including FakeTV and Bike tags at shop.immobilise.com, use code BACKTOSCHOOL20 at the checkout. Discount valid until 30th September 2020.

Back to School with £3.5 billion worth of technology

When the school gates open for the new term, it’s estimated that students bags will contain over three billion pounds worth of their favourite gadgets. A staggering average of over £270 per school bag. Such high values intensify issues associated with loss and theft requiring students to be ever more cautious. 

Schoolgirls using iPad during a lesson at a comprehensive secondary school Wales UK

To stay safe and secure, we recommend:

  • Students shouldn’t leave their phones, cameras, tablets, and other gear unattended, and when not in use, keep them securely locked away.
  • Don’t show off expensive devices, especially in public spaces. Children and young adults make easy targets for unscrupulous thieves.
  • Ensure gadgets are registered on Immobilise.com, recording the make, model and any serial numbers. Most importantly for phones, key in *#06# on the dialer to obtain the IMEI number and record that. 
  • Bikes should be kept in the school’s designated areas and kept secured with a D-lock to an immovable object such as a ground-mounted loop. Don’t forget to register the bike at Immobilise.com.
  • Consider additional marking of bikes and other items with ImmobiTAG or high visibility warning labels – particularly important if the item doesn’t have its own serial number. 

Registering your property at Immobilise.com is FREE. You can register property irrespective of any 3rd party labelling used; it’s all accepted!

For 20% off all Immobilise marking products at shop.immobilise.com, use code BACKTOSCHOOL20 at the checkout. Discount valid until 30th September 2020. 

You Can Impact Crime

As a result of the pandemic, the impact on the economy has been severe but there are some positives to be found – the realisation by many businesses that remote working is both feasible and productive for parts of their workforce being one and a massive albeit temporary reduction in property crime being another. It’s much riskier to burgle a property when it’s occupied. Sadly, as we all venture out, so will the thieves and property crime of all kinds will rise quickly once more.

Individuals can impact crime by simply registering their valuables and then alerting police and traders if they’re ever stolen or lost via Immobilise.com

It’s difficult as individuals to think that we can impact crime, just as it’s hard to imagine individuals fighting with a pandemic. What we have seen though is that acting as one, working together to face a problem that affects us all is effective and does make a difference. 

So it is with addressing crime. We can each take small actions to achieve big results. The key to success is ensuring that our actions are joined up.

The simple act of recording the identifying numbers, appearance and marks of your property in the right place takes a few minutes but it becomes very powerful when linked with police and second-hand property traders.

With a suspect in custody or the subject of stop & search powers, being able to attribute the property in their possession to an owner such as yourself may lead to arrest in addition to the obvious potential of your property being returned to you.

Indicating that your property is stolen on Immobilise will help the second-hand trade avoid buying your property from a thief. There are many thousands of responsible traders diligently checking every item they are offered. Turning away the seller of stolen property may not get your property back of course but it will devalue it to the thief, making the theft unrewarding and ultimately deterring the behaviour. Every check creates a footprint that puts a person at a specific place and time in possession of your property.  Valuable intelligence for the police and a valuable deterrent.

User registering an IMEI on their Immobilise account. Simply dial *#06# to reveal the 15 digit number.

If you are the victim of theft and need to make an insurance claim of course having those details readily recorded will help to expedite claims. Indeed, those same records of registration and trade also help insurers to deter fraudulent claims and less insurance fraud keeps your premiums down.

Finally, when buying second-hand, do ask the trader for evidence of them having checked their purchase. If they can’t provide that evidence –  that you should be able to verify independently as being valid – find another trader who will. This simple action encourages responsible trading and reduces crime.

You can read more about Recipero’s connected ecosystem for reducing crime here https://www.recipero.com/crime-reduction-ecosystem and you can register your property FREE of charge at https://www.immobilise.com

Mobile Phone Security Advice

Phone thieves have a variety of techniques to separate you from your mobile phone. Pickpocketing and ”snatch” theft incidents are quite common. As is accidentally leaving it somewhere only to discover that it had gone upon your return. It’s also risky to leave your phone on display in your car or anywhere else in public unattended.

Immobilise recommends the following advice to give your device the best protection it can get;

Always use a keypad lock
Use the keypad lock so that thieves cannot immediately access your phone or use the biometric authentication if your phone has it (fingerprint or facial recognition).

Install a tracking/anti-theft app
These can be an effective way of seeing exactly where your phone has been taken to and the police trace your phone – which is very useful when catching the thieves who took it.

Register it on Immobilise.com
Register your phone FREE on immobilise.com to help police recover it and combat the sale of stolen goods. UK network operators can also stop a stolen phone from working across their networks with its IMEI – Find your number by dialing *#06# and make sure you log it.

Be cautious
When you’re talking on your phone in public, be aware of your surroundings. When storing your phone, don’t just slip it into your jeans pocket or leave it on view in a public place where it may get unwanted attention.

Get insured. 
Replacing a mobile phone can be a costly business and only a third of phone owners have insurance. It’s a sensible idea and a small price to pay for better peace of mind.

immobilise Garden & Shed Security tips

With the good weather and the longer daylight hours. Now is a great time to assess your garden and shed for vulnerabilities and make improvements. Taking just a few steps can make a huge difference in keeping your home safer. Here are a few of Immobilise’s top tips;

1. Make sure your garden tools and equipment are put away every evening – and secure your shed with a good lock.
2. Security mark all property in sheds, garages and outbuildings, registering ownership FREE on immobilise.com
3. Trim hedges to limit hiding places and even plant some defensive shrubs around the perimeter fences.
4. Ensure garden items such as wheelie bins or furniture cannot be easily used to gain access.
5. Install a motion sensor floodlight and even better CCTV and/or an alarm with a visible box on the exterior of the house.

For more information on garden and shed security visit https://www.immobilise.com/ar…/garden-and-shed-home-security

Immobilise Bike Security & Awareness

It’s officially UK Bike Week and we hope you’re enjoying getting out and about on your bicycles. With authorities encouraging us to cycle to work, as a leisure activity or for fitness more of us are cycling than ever. Bicycles are seen as high-value targets by thieves, be sure follow some basic security advice to protect your bike;

  1. Buy the best-approved lock you can afford, preferably a D-Lock – and remember 2 locks are better than one!
  2. Pick wisely where you lock your bike, in a secure well-lit observable area. 
  3. Lock your bike to something secure.
  4. Remove accessories.
  5. Give your bike a unique ID and register it FREE on www.immobilise.com
http://www.immobilise.com

For more bicycle security advice go to: https://www.immobilise.com/articles/bikesecurity

Stay safe and happy cycling.