Category Archives: CheckMEND

Starting an internet-based business (businesswings.co.uk)

Recipero has grown out of an idea conceived several years ago, the article referred to below, written by businesswings.co.uk explains well how Recipero’s founder gained inspiration for the fast moving business that it has now become.

Many founders of fast-growing businesses set out with the most modest of intentions.

For example, Pierre Omidyar originally set up eBay as a vehicle for his wife to trade collectables called Pez candy dispensers. Omidyar had no inkling of what the site would become.

Adrian Portlock, whose Gloucestershire-based company Recipero has built an online database comprising the serial numbers of 100 million stolen goods, agrees that this is “often the way with businesses. If you see an opportunity based on providing a solution, that’s normally a good basis for a start-up.”

If you see an opportunity based on providing a solution, that’s normally a good basis for a start-up
One only has to look at some of the ridiculed inventions on Dragon’s Den to see the perils of trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist (what problem could have give rise to the ironing board that doubled as a piece of lounge furniture?).

Adrian, 50, set up his database, Check Mend, after an irksome experience highlighted a need for such a resource.

“I lost a phone on the Tube in London,” he recalls. “And when I went to the lost-property office they said ‘can you identify the phone?’ So I said ‘a Nokia 6310i.’ And they said ‘well, we’ve only had 35 of those today.’

“Then they wanted an IMEI number, the serial number of the phone. After much messing about my network gave it to me and I managed to get my phone back.

Eureka moment
“It then occurred to me that there was a market for keeping those details somewhere central, so if that if people lost any gizmos they could log in and find them more easily.

“So that’s how it started and it did really well.”

To read the rest of the story please go to:
www.businesswings.co.uk/articles/Starting-an-internet-based-business

Carphone Warehouse expands its use of CheckMEND

Carphone Warehouse Website

As of the 8th June The Carphone Warehouse have extended their trade-in scheme to include iPods and GPS equipment. Every item is checked in real-time on Recipero’s CheckMEND due diligence service.

The system has been integrated with Carphone Warehouse’s EPOS systems in over 800 UK stores, their website, and direct sales channels, allowing them to ensure only ‘bona fide’ customers can benefit from their trade-in offers.

With nearly 50 billion items of serial numbered goods recorded CheckMEND is the world’s largest database of stolen goods, making it an obvious partner for Carphone Warehouse.

For more information please visit the following links:

www.carphonewarehouse.com

www.checkmend.com

www.recipero.com/cpw_expand_checkmend_use

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

Police target mobile phone stores in a crackdown on the sale of stolen goods

Emma Stone of the Coventry Telegraph has reported that police in Coventry are targeting mobile phone stores in the city in a crackdown on the sale of stolen goods.

Officers from Stoney Stanton Road police station, along with officers from Coventry City Council’s Trading Standards, have been carrying out spot checks at shops selling mobile phones and accessories.

Four mobile phone stores have been visited in the last week and two were found offering illegal handset unblocking services.

The stores were searched and seven stolen mobile phones were seized from the two city stores.

In addition to the stolen phones, trading standards officers also seized a large quantity of counterfeit phone accessories from one of the shops visited.

As part of the police operation, second-hand mobile phone stores are being asked to log details of the serial number, phone number and customer details of all handsets brought in for sale.

Shop owners are also being advised to check national database

will tell us if a phone has been stolen.

Anyone wising to carry and use phones which have been stolen are now much more likely to be caught.

Stores that do not check the validity of the phones they are selling will also be targeted by police and trading standards officers.

He added that further spot checks were planned throughout the city.

To read the source article please go to: Coventry Telegraph

Gwent Police launch high-tech war on thieves

The South Wales Argus has reported that vehicle thieves and shoplifters in Gwent are being targeted by police.

Extra officers are being used this week to capture cars and use specialist number plate recognition equipment to find stolen goods and return them to their rightful owners.

Detective Inspector Peter Jones, who is leading the operation, said

This is a response to the increase in thefts from vehicles during the run-up to Christmas … We know that thieves are stealing number plates, sat navs, audio equipment like CD players and mobile phones. We also know they are selling them on and are working with second hand shops to stop that.

People can register their valuables on the specially designed Immobilise.com website so their goods can be returned if stolen.

Officers from the community safety team will also be out in January showing shoppers how to register their valuables.

Inspector Terry Davies from the team said:

We are concerned that the credit crunch may be leading more people to risk buying dodgy goods which could have been stolen, to save money.

To view the source article in full please go to: South Wales Argus Newsdesk

Cheltenham Police Urge Students To Keep Their Accommodation Secure

Gloucestershire Constabulary make some sensible recommendations for students:

Cheltenham Police are reminding students to keep their accommodation secure. The warning comes after two student homes in the town were burgled last week.

Sergeant Mark Stephens from Whaddon Safer Community Team, who are responsible for policing issues at the Francis Close Hall, Hardwicke and Pitville campuses said: “Sadly student houses are an easy target for burglaries as with several people coming and going from the property they are easily left insecure.”

“If you add up the cost of everything you own, ipod, television, bike, laptop and mobile phone, you’ll probably be surprised at the amount it comes to.

“Along with the financial ramifications of losing these items it can also be very upsetting and devastating to your university work if any of your notes were stored on the stolen items.”

In addition to registering property on the Immobilise Property Register, Cheltenham police also make these sensible suggestions:

  1. A remarkable number of burglaries occur because a window or door has been left open, so make sure you keep them closed.
  2. Do not leave cash or valuables on display in your room and make sure valuable items cannot be seen from the window.
  3. During the Christmas, Easter and summer holidays take all items of value home with you.
  4. Make sure your property is insured.
  5. Get valuables security marked.

To see the orginal article in full go to: Space – University of Gloucestershire Students Union

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?

Property stolen from luggage and sold on eBay!

With the recent incident highlighted in an article on the register website regarding the theft of consumer electronic from people luggage and their subsequent sale on eBay once again the use of CheckMEND could have saved a lot of people buying this stuff a lot of hassle. Remember if it looks too good to be true it probably is, always check what you are buying with CheckMEND.

CheckMEND service addresses online auction sites’ problems

CheckMEND SERVICE ADDRESSES ONLINE AUCTION SITES’ PROBLEMS

 

Need for Stronger Solutions Underscored by eBay Counterfeits Ruling in France; US Decision Imminent 

 

Gloucestershire, UK, July 2, 2008 – In light of the recent legal ruling in France resulting in a $63 million fine against eBay for selling counterfeit luxury goods, the global issue of product authenticity among online auction sites has been brought sharply into focus. Cybercrime and “e-fencing” are serious matters in the US as well, costing consumers an estimated $4 billion annually. A judge in the US is due to rule at any time on a similar case brought by Tiffany. 

 

This threat was identified eight years ago by the founders of CheckMEND.com, an online property validation service, who have compiled what is now the world’s largest database of counterfeit and stolen goods with more than 100 million records. A simple online search (or “check”) allows auction sites, consumers and manufacturers to validate the authenticity of a product for less than a dollar.

 

Adrian Portlock, founder and CEO of CheckMEND, has been in the business of identifying dubious goods sold online for nearly a decade and is an expert in this area, having worked extensively with law enforcement and government organizations. He said, “If you strip away the smoke and mirrors, this is a simple argument about whether online auction sites should be pro-active in policing the property being sold on their sites, and this issue is not going to go away. No system is ever going to be perfect at identifying all questionable items, but you have to start somewhere. CheckMEND is the most comprehensive system of its type, recommended by eBay in the UK when buying a mobile phone.”

 

A short demo of the CheckMEND system can be viewed at www.checkmend.com.

 

About CheckMEND

CheckMEND is a commercial service provided by Recipero Limited, a specialist aggregator of information. Based in Gloucestershire, UK, Recipero provides services to a range of blue chip clients and government organizations. The data on the CheckMEND database is checked over 1 million times a month by hundreds of approved organizations from more than 40 countries worldwide. For more information, visit CheckMEND at www.checkmend.com.

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!