Tag Archives: Crime

Preparation is the key to staying safe this winter

You will hear this saying a lot in the coming weeks leading up to Christmas. Preparation is not only a great idea help your Christmas planning run smoothly, but it’s worth preparing for those unforeseen circumstances around the festive period.
 

The last thing you want around this time of year is to worry about burglars but according to The Office of National Statistics, police recorded burglary is up by 3% and theft by 7% compared to last year. So, it is imperative we do as much as possible to keep ourselves, our loved ones and our property as safe as possible.

Follow a few simple tips for a safer holiday season:

Staying Safe this Winter

  1. Register on Immobilise: Before you get too busy with Christmas preparations take some time to record your valuable items on Immobilise, so you have a secure list of precious items.
  2. Deter potential criminals by investing in a motion sensor outdoor flood light and some Immobilise window stickers.
  3. Fake it till you make it, with a Fake TV that recreates the same flickering glow that looks like someone is watching TV, and invest in light timers especially if you are going away.
  4. Keep curtains closed, at night especially when it gets darker earlier and ensure Christmas presents are out of site.
  5. Don’t advertise on social media when you plan to go away. Publishing your movements can let burglars know when there is an empty house.
  6. Preparation is key. Be sure to cancel any scheduled deliveries such as newspaper or milk deliveries that might alert someone you aren’t there.
  7. Don’t hide spare keys. Burglars often watch a house for a few days before attempting to break in and leaving them a key makes it that much easier!
  8. Secure the outside of your home with deadlocks on windows and make sure any sheds or garages are secure.

Festival season is upon us, so keep your valuables safe!

It’s that time of year to kick back and relax at a festival and listen to your favourite kind of music but have you thought about how to keep your valuables safe from loss or theft.

Festivals can be an absolute goldmine for thieves, although there is plenty of advice out there about what is in vogue to wear at festivals this year, there isn’t much advice about protecting your property.

Opportunists can present themselves at any time especially in large crowds so whether you are protecting your iPhone, Samsung Galaxy or HTC phone, or are worried about your wallet and camera there are a few things that you can do to keep your valuables safe.

  1. Firstly, you need to register any valuables on Immobilise, the national property register which is linked to the police database (NMPR) where if any property is found the police can run a search and return it to the rightful owner. It is a must do for gadgets such as your mobile phone, which you will want to take with you to a festival. You can register any property on Immobilise, so get registering!
  2. Try not to bring too many valuables in the first place, but if you do don’t leave anything unattended or in tent. Sometimes there may be free locker areas if you do have something you want to lock away.
  3. Keep valuables in the bottom of your sleeping bag at night.
  4. Only take as much cash as you think you will need and try separate cash from cards.
  5. Don’t put phones and wallets in your back pocket.
  6. Report any suspicious behaviour or crime to police immediately.

Stay safe this festival season and have a great time doing it!

Beware of the Mobile Phone Moped Muggers!

Thieves who steal mobile phones straight out of people’s hands as they zoom by on their, often stolen, mopeds are becoming an increasing problem for the public and police.

It’s completely shocking to the person being attacked. Martin Lewis, the money saving expert, who was one of the latest victims can confirm this from his recent attack near Oxford Circus. He tweets about his incident: ‘About 40 minutes ago two men on a moped just rode up on the pavement and snatched my mobile out of my hands. The speed and accuracy was frightening.’ To read more on this attack click here.

Scotland Yard claims that moped muggers are snatching 20 phones an hour and that thieves mainly go for iPhones. If the phone is still switched on then they reset it and sell it on, if not then they will trade it for parts.

If the owner has been astute enough to register their phone on immobilise.com, the National Property Register, they would immediately be able to change the status of the device flagging it as stolen to traders, as well as report it to the Police*. UK Police officers are the ONLY people with authorisation to access the Immobilise database to check the status and ownership of a mobile phone and repatriate it if it is recovered. The Metropolitan Police advise mobile users to activate their phone’s security features when they receive it and to register valuable possessions with immobilise.com for free, pre-loss or theft.

In this increasingly common crime the phone’s owner is often not the only victim. If you are buying a second hand mobile phone, whether that be an iPhone, Samsung, HTC or any other smartphone, then CheckMEND can help you avoid stolen property. An online check costs as little as £1 and will highlight if a phone is blocked, stolen or compromised in someway.  CheckMEND is the most comprehensive device check available helping consumers, traders, recyclers and retailers buy and sell second-hand goods with confidence.

The moral, however of this post is not to give thieves opportunities to steal your possessions or profit from your loss. Try to avoid using your smart phone in public, be cautious, and to be on the safe side always register new phones or mobile devices on immobilise.com.

* Flagging an item as stolen on Immobilise means that information is immediately available to the Police when they conduct searches for it on the Police only NMPR system. In the event of a crime, a report should also be made directly to Police so they are able to investigate it appropriately and request additional details when relevant.

Beat the Burglars this Summer

 

Summer is such a great time of year… the sun is shining (well some of the time), the evenings are longer and everyone seems to be in a much better mood. Whether you are breaking up from school, university or just looking forward to that long-awaited summer holiday (like me), we will all be preparing for some fun activities this summer.

As part of that preparation be aware that if you’re leaving your home and worldly possessions unattended, for even a short period of time, make sure it is safe and secure. The last thing you want after all the excitement of the summer holidays is to find that your possessions have been stolen in one of the 2.1 million burglaries that occur in Britain every year!

So, what can we do about it?

Deter burglars

Homes are 5 times more likely to be burgled if they have no security measures, so it is really important that we do as much as possible to deter burglars from targeting our homes. Taking just a few steps can make a huge difference in keeping your home safe.

  • Lock your doors properly. It sounds so simple but most burglars get in through windows and doors that aren’t locked properly 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.
  • Put Immobilise stickers in obvious places such as garden sheds so they are visible to burglars who will know you have listed your property on Immobilise which makes it harder for them to sell it
  • Use timers on your light switches and get a Fake TV 

 Lock Down 

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

  • Keep expensive jewellery in a locked safe
  • Keep TV’s and tech equipment out of view of windows
  • If there is someone you trust, ask if they can check on your property for you and take in your post
  • Don’t discuss holiday plans on social media. Burglars are more likely to live in your surrounding neighbourhood and may even be part of your social network.

Register on Immobilise

  • Should you be unfortunate enough to have any possessions stolen, having a list of everything on immobilise provides the Police with the information they need to be able to return your belongings when found.
  • Immobilise offer many products to mark your property which means it is much easier to identify. From UV pens to the infamous ImmobiTAG for bicycles. Click to visit the Immobilise shop. 

 

How to buy and sell phones and mobile devices online safely

Online shopping has rapidly become the easiest way to buy goods. With only a click of a button or tap of a screen between us and our next purchase, it’s no wonder that 95% of British people buy goods via the internet. According to The Daily Mail, 1 in 4 British people now shop online at least once a week, although this way of shopping is more convenient it does increase our exposure to fraudulent activity.

By this, I mean that although you may feel ‘safe as houses’, sitting at home on your laptop browsing your favourite sites, you can’t be quite as confident that what your buying is completely legitimate. There are more and more scams to be aware of and avoid especially when buying or selling any mobile devices in the second-hand market.

Many great bargains can be found in online auction and classified ad sites, and in turn you can, as a seller, make some money on the items you no longer need. It’s true what they say ‘one man’s rubbish is another man’s treasure‘.  However without knowing the seller is reputable, it is very hard to be confident that a device is genuine or compromised. One well established way to put your mind at rest is to purchase a CheckMEND report.

A CheckMEND mobile device check costs as little as £0.99p per device and can help inform your buying decision by reporting on a devices current status and history including if it is blocked, marked as lost or stolen, plus many other important data checks. It’s like getting a clean bill of health when your device comes back clear, a green flag to proceed!

If you are selling an item, it is a great idea to sell it with a CheckMEND history report to build trust with your customers, achieving faster sales and higher prices in the process.

Trade with confidence when buying or selling second-hand goods, run a CheckMEND device check now.

Back to school… With £3.2 billion worth of tech

Schoolimage1When the school gates opened for the new term, its estimated that under 16s’ bags contained over £3.2 billion worth of tech – a staggering average in excess of £270 per school bag*. Such high values intensify issues associated with loss and theft requiring students to be ever more cautious.

To stay safe and secure we recommend …

  • Students shouldn’t leave their smartphones, cameras, iPods and tablets unattended, and when not in use they should be kept secure in a locked bag or locker.
  • Don’t show off expensive devices, especially in public spaces. Children and young teenagers make easy targets for unscrupulous thieves.
  • Ensure gadgets are registered on Immobilise,  recording the make, model,  and any serial codes but most importantly for smartphones the IMEI number – for mobiles just key in *#06#  on the handset to display the IMEI.
  • Bicycles should be kept in the school’s designated areas and secured with a D-lock to an immovable object such as ground mounted loop. Don’t forget to register the bike on Immobilise and consider enhancing the registration with an ImmobiTag RFID tag.

* Statistics sourced from USwitch Survey: USwitch

This post is an extract from our regular email updates that contain other crime prevention tips and topical news along side special offers and discounts on items in our Immobilise property marking and security products. (Go to: https://shop.immobilise.com/)

To subscribe please update the preferences in your Immobilise account: https://www.immobilise.com/login 

Recipero’s US Cell Phone Crime Statistics in 2016 so far…

2016 has already been a busy year for Recipero resulting in our connected device fraud and theft intelligence solutions producing some very interesting statistics.

A more detailed report will be published at the end of Q1, for now though here are some significant facts you might find interesting.

A print optimized version of these stats is available here.

Recipero-Infographic-2016-p1
Recipero US Cell Phone Crime Statistics in 2016 so far. Page 1
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Recipero US Cell Phone Crime Statistics in 2016 so far. Page 2
  • In the first two months of 2016, Recipero provided intelligence on transactions involving over 10 million devices globally.
  • 31% of devices reported stolen were NOT blocked by operators.
  • The Apple 6, 6s and Samsung S6 were the most stolen phones in the US in the first quarter of this year.
  • Day 48 is the most likely day after taking out a lease or rental contract that a user of a device will decide to sell it for cash and stop the installment payments.
  • 7% of devices that are blocked when an insurance claim is made for loss or theft are unblocked within 30 days.
  • 5% of devices offered for sale or trade-in at retail were reported as lost or stolen.
  • 4% of accidental damage or breakdown warranty claims were actually made on devices that had been reported as lost or stolen.
  • $2,100 is the price that a stolen Apple iPhone 6 sells for in some Eastern European countries.
  • Through our global reach, we have seen US stolen devices turn up in some far-reaching places including; Vietnam, Poland, Denmark, Jamaica, Romania, Spain, Mexico, Italy, South Africa and Colombia.

To keep up to date with future news and releases like this please sign up to our newsletter.

Police warn public on risk of shed burglaries

The Sunderland Echo have reported that Police in the area are offering vital ‘sheducation’ to the public – in a bid to keep opportunistic burglars locked out.

Crime-fighting cops in South Tyneside and Sunderland are reminding householders of the importance of shed security – after a recent surge in the number of sheds being broken into, with bikes being stored inside being the main target for crooks.

Neighbourhood Inspector Paul Young said:

People often don’t realise the value of the items they are storing inside their shed but if they’ve got expensive tools and bikes in there it all adds up and unfortunately, burglars are wise to this.

Home security is vitally important and most people install security measures to protect their home however, they then don’t have adequate security on sheds and outbuildings leaving these types of buildings vulnerable to being targeted by thieves.

A good quality lock could make all the difference over whether or not a burglar chooses to break-in to a particular building.

Officers also say registering items that are stored inside the shed on national property register immobilise.com can help ensure it is returned to the owner if it is stolen. It also helps identify those involved in burglary.

Insp Young added:

When we recover property we suspect has been stolen we will search immobilise to see if the property has been registered – if it has not only can we return the property but we can clearly identify the person in possession of the property as not being the owner and arrest them for handling stolen goods.

To register property visit: www.immobilise.com

Recipero Announces Partnership with Carolina West Wireless to Guard Against Theft and Trade of Stolen Devices

Carolina-West-Wireless-logo-362pxRecipero, a partnering member of Competitive Carriers Association (CCA), has announced that it is collaborating with Carolina West Wireless, the premier wireless carrier serving western North Carolina, to help prevent the trade and sale of stolen smartphones, including Carolina West Wireless devices.

Carolina West Wireless, a CCA carrier member, has signed on to deploy Recipero’s CheckMEND, StockWatch and FraudWatch solutions, part of Recipero’s powerful Crime Reduction Ecosystem that helps detect mobile devices that have been lost or stolen.

The use of Recipero’s CheckMEND solution will help safeguard both customers and employees from criminal activity, StockWatch monitors retail and logistics environments providing early indication inventory theft, while FraudWatch targets the growing problem of contract fraud /credit muling – helping to reduce the personal and commercial impact of crime.

In addition, consumers and law enforcement officials alike will have access to Carolina West Wireless data on lost or stolen devices through Recipero’s CheckMEND and Police NMPR solutions.

CheckMEND is the most complete international listing of lost and stolen mobile devices available, comprised of data from major wireless carriers and law-enforcement entities globally.  Using the CheckMEND tool, Carolina West Wireless can more effectively identify smartphones that have been lost or stolen and prevent them from being accepted into its buyback program.

I am pleased that Carolina West Wireless and Recipero have formed a strategic partnership to protect Carolina West’s subscribers and their property,

said Steven K. Berry, CCA President & CEO.

Protecting subscribers’ investments in their devices is a priority for CCA’s members, and I am delighted that Recipero is providing our carriers a solution to reduce mobile device theft and resale.  As the Federal Communications Commission and state regulators continue to think about the problem of mobile device theft, I hope they will look at the example that Carolina West and Recipero are setting for the industry through this solution that allows the carrier to build loyalty and protect its customers. 

Greg Post, Recipero’s President, North America said:

Our partnership with Carolina West Wireless and CCA, is a significant step in addressing the issue of cell phone fraud and theft. Carolina West Wireless will see the benefits or our crime reduction ecosystem, which we expect to rollout to other CCA members soon.

Slayton Stewart, CEO of Carolina West Wireless said:

We recognize the growing negative impact of device theft and fraud in our industry

We are committed to taking the necessary steps to protect our customers’ against the potentially harmful financial impact of this type of activity.  By deploying the solutions from our new partnership with Recipero, we will minimize this risk while protecting our customers’ financial interests.

About Carolina West Wireless

Carolina West Wireless was formed in 1991 and is owned by a partnership consisting of Skyline Telephone, Surry Telephone and Wilkes Telecommunications. Headquartered in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, Carolina West Wireless provides its customers in ten (10) western NC counties with innovative technology including data and mobile services, the latest wireless equipment and competitive wireless plans that provide national coverage. For more information, visit http://www.carolinawest.com

About CCA

CCA is the nation’s leading association for competitive wireless providers and stakeholders across the United States. The licensed service area of CCA’s more than 100 carrier members covers 95 percent of the nation. Visit www.competitivecarriers.org

BBC One shows CheckMEND helping Cash Converters avoid stolen property

Cashing InBBC One programme “Cashing In”  featured the Recipero CheckMEND solution again last night (05 Aug 2015).

Once again the documentary showed CheckMEND helping Cash Converters avoid stolen property and insurance fraud, providing a great example of how CheckMEND works to identify and target property crime.

Watch it from 47 minutes on BBC iPlayer (available until 03 Sep 2015): www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b05p3fbv/cashing-in-episode-3

To learn more about how CheckMEND works with sister services Immobilise and the Police NMPR as part of the Recipero Crime Reduction Ecosystem go to: recipero.com/crime-reduction-ecosystem