Tag Archives: Stolen Goods

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 

SaferGems’ members to benefit from partnership with Recipero’s Crime Reduction Ecosystem

safergems-montage-w250Recipero is pleased to announce its partnership with SaferGems, a service provided by the British Security Industry Association (BSIA).

Focusing initially on jewellery and watch traders, the partnership is set to dramatically improve the benefits of the SaferGems Watch Register service which helps members report and be alerted to lost and stolen items.

The Watch Register is operated by SaferGems, a joint initiative established by the BSIA in partnership with a number of prominent organisations including TH March Insurance Brokers, the National Association of Goldsmiths (NAG) and the British Jewellers’ Association (BJA).

In 2014 alone, over £9m worth of watches was stolen from individuals and jewellery stores, often inadvertently being sold on through the UK’s wide network of pawnbrokers and second-hand jewellery traders. Intelligence gathered by SaferGems shows that watches are among the items of personal property most targeted by thieves, with jewellery shops also frequently targeted by ‘smash and grab’ opportunists and organised gangs.

SaferGems are now entering into partnership with Recipero to improve the operational capabilities of the Watch Register. SaferGems’ Intelligence Officer, Simon Gardner, comments:

Whilst reviewing the operational needs and costs of providing a fast and easily accessible checking service for Watch Register, it became clear that Recipero’s CheckMEND service already provided a very comprehensive service that is well proven in thousands of retail premises nationwide and with a little cooperation could incorporate the Watch Register data that we already hold.

Les Gray, Recipero’s COO said:

We’re delighted to be able to incorporate Watch Register into Recipero’s Crime Reduction Ecosystem. This represents real value to Safer Gems and their members and of course enhances existing cooperation with UK Police.

Steve Jupp Deputy Chief Constable with the Suffolk Police Force adds:

This collaboration is another positive step forward in assisting the Police service to work more effectively with the business industry, to identify and recover stolen property. The register is an easy to use and efficient way for officers to access information; I know it will assist in the conviction of many offenders to come.

SaferGems members will further benefit through discounted use of Recipero’s CheckMEND service. CheckMEND, which forms part of many Police “Safe Seller Scheme” initiatives, enables traders of second-hand items to perform history checks to help mitigate the inherent risks of handling second-hand property.

Simon Gardner concludes:

In the long-term, the Watch Register will help to reduce crimes against the jewellery industry by making it more difficult for thieves to resell stolen watches without getting caught.

Further information

Recipero is the leading data aggregator and innovator in personal possession fraud and theft prevention worldwide.  The “Recipero Crime Reduction Ecosystem” works to protect consumers and businesses through provision of intelligence services. Forming part of millions of decision-making processes and transactions every month, Recipero’s data and intelligence solutions are provided online, in real-time, and are used globally by law enforcement, insurers, recyclers, retailers and consumers. Learn more at: www.recipero.com

The British Security Industry Association is the trade association covering all aspects of the professional security industry in the UK. Its members provide over 70% of UK security products and services and adhere to strict quality standards. For more information see www.bsia.co.uk, email info@bsia.co.uk or telephone 0845 389 3889/020 7484 8728.

The SaferGems team, which has links to all the UK police forces; Co-ordinates data from the trade on incidents and suspicious events; Sends alerts to members of the NAG, the BJA and those insured via T H March; Co-ordinates data across police forces to improve identification and conviction of criminals. Learn more at:  www.safergems.org.uk

Property marking warning for building site burglars

York Police are fighting back against building site burglars – by making valuable tools and plant kit ‘too hot to handle’ with Immobilise.

Following a spate of recent burglaries targeting building sites York Police are taking proactive steps to deter criminals and ensure property is easy to identify.

Officers are attending a building site in Clifford Street, York, today (Tuesday 27 October) to security mark and log all equipment there, ensuring would-be thieves would find it impossible to sell on. The site was recently targeted by burglars, and police are now inviting other building firms in York to get their equipment marked too.

Property on the site will be security marked using dot peen marking, in conjunction with the Hermes recording system to log it on Immobilise, the UK national property register database.

Property marking sessions at other sites are also taking place, and officers are now inviting firms in York to get in touch so their equipment can also be security marked and registered.

PCSO Chris Shearing, of York Police, said:

Getting your property marked – whether it’s plant kit, power tools, bikes or gadgets – is one of the most effective ways to protect it from criminals.

The permanent marking will deter thieves, as it makes it far harder to sell on. It will also be much easier for us to return it to its rightful owner if it is lost or stolen, and could provide vital evidence to secure a prosecution.

Plant kit and power tools on building sites can be worth thousands of pounds, which is why it’s so important to get it security marked and registered. We want the message to go out to would-be burglars that targeting sites in York is simply not worth the risk.

Dot peen marking involves using a tungsten carbide-tipped pin to indent an object with dots to create a visible, permanent unique number. The unique number is entered onto the national Immobilise property register database. The dot peen machines in York were funded by North Yorkshire Police, the Police and Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire, and Safer York Partnership.

For more information, visit www.northyorkshire.police.uk/whatisdotpeen. Drop-in sessions for members of the public are promoted in the local press and on Twitter with the hashtag #whatisdotpeen, via the local team accounts @snayorkcityeast, @snayorknorth and @snayorkwest.

Any businesses or organisations in York interested in getting their property marked should contact their local police team by dialling 101 and selecting option 2.

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

 

CheckMEND helps Police return phone after it is spotted on eBay

The Metropolitan Police have reported that a mobile phone that was recorded as being stolen in Croydon has been returned to its owner after police managed to track it down when the phone was sold on eBay.

The victim, a 32 year-old woman, reported to police that her phone had been stolen in Croydon town centre on Monday, 10 March. Initial enquiries failed to identify any suspects, as the shop’s CCTV had not recorded the incident.

However, police received an alert via their NMPR system that the phone’s IMEI number had been checked by somebody using the CheckMEND service – a service that allows people to see if a phone has been reported stolen or been blocked.

Through further enquiries, officers managed to identify that the phone had been put up for sale on the auction website within hours of if being reported stolen. Officers eventually identified the seller and on Thursday 17 April a 29-year-old woman was subsequently interviewed by police. She claimed to have found the phone in the town centre and decided to sell it on. She provided officers with the details of the person to whom she had sold the phone, and after further enquiries, the police were able to retrieve the phone from the buyer and return it to the owner on 17 April.

The 29-year-old woman was cautioned for the offence of theft by finding.

PC Robert Sidney from the Broad Green Safer Neighbourhoods Team, who investigated the case said:

This case highlights two important points. Firstly, if you’re buying a phone second-hand or over the Internet, then it is definitely worth checking to see if it has been reported stolen. You can do this through the CheckMEND website and whilst there is a small fee, it could save you a lot of money later on.

Secondly, whether you find a phone or any other expensive item or gadget in the street, then you could be committing an offence by simply keeping it. You should contact police or attend a police station to hand it in. If it doesn’t get claimed by the owner then it will be given to the finder, but if you just keep it then you could be committing a criminal offence.

To view the source stories please see:

MET Police: met.police.uk/News/Stolen-phone-returned-to-owner-by-police

Croydon Guardian: croydonguardian.co.uk/news/

Don’t let burglars ruin your Christmas

Avon & Somerset Police want everyone to have a safe and enjoyable Christmas.

Chief Superintendent Jon Stratford who is in charge of burglary for Avon and Somerset Police said:

Over the Christmas period we’ll be working hard to keep you and your property safe. Please do your bit to help us.

After you’ve done your Christmas shopping, if you’ve bought any gadgets for your family and friends then make sure you log anything with a serial number on the national property database Immobilise. This will help us to return your property to you if it’s stolen and will make it harder for thieves to sell on.

I also can’t stress enough the importance or downloading and installing tracking software on your mobiles, tablets and laptops. We’ve had some great results recently where people have activated their tracking software as soon as their phone or tablet has been stolen. Not only did it allow us to catch the thief red-handed, it meant the victim got their property back quickly.

Whether you’re going away for Christmas or staying home to play with all your new toys, there are some simple tips you can follow to keep you and your family safe.

Your home is your castle

  • If you’re going away for Christmas, make sure your house looks occupied. It’s worth getting automatic time switches for lights and radios.
  • Ask a neighbour to keep an eye on your house whilst you’re away – they could park a car on your drive and collect any mail or free newspapers which might otherwise just sit in your porch.
  • Cancel deliveries of milk and newspapers discreetly – don’t announce your departure to a shop full of people. Only tell people who need to know you’re going away and don’t post your holiday dates on Facebook or Twitter.
  • Don’t have your home address showing on your luggage for the outward journey. Only put this on the inside of your cases.
  • Lock the garage and shed with proper security locks. Make sure your tools are locked away so they can’t be used to break into your house.
  • Remember to remove the keys from locked doors and windows and to keep them out of sight in a safe place.
  • Letter box restrictors can prevent thieves from accessing the lock from the outside.
  • Never leave valuables on display by windows or doors, especially those with cat flaps.
  • Keep presents out of sight and don’t leave packaging for new electrical goods on display outside your house – keep it out of sight until the recycling is collected.

Christmas shopping

  • Keep handbags, purses and wallets close to you and secure at all times.
  • Don’t leave bags hanging on the back of chairs in cafés and restaurants, under tables or in shopping trolleys.
  • We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, register all your gear on Immobilise!

Meet your neighbourhood team
Come to one of the local registration events going on across Avon and Somerset, where your local neighbourhood team can help you to register your property on Immobilise. You can also speak to them about any issues you might have and get general crime prevention advice to help keep you safe this winter. Visit the local pages of the Avon & Somerset Police website to get details of your nearest event.

York residents invited to register valuables on national Immobilise database

PCSOs Rachel Shaw and Tony Barge show Tracey Simpson-Laing how they use the new scanning equipment. (Source: York Press)

The York Press has reported that residents worried about their property being stolen are being invited to register their items on the Immobilise National Property Register to make it easier to return stolen goods to their owners.

City of York Council is urging people to register their property free of charge using new technology invested in by North Yorkshire Police and the Safer York Partnership during the week-long national campaign. The authority teamed up with police to provide £36,000 to fund the Hermes and Apollo kits.

Hermes allows the police and other organisations to upload details of property by recording identifying features, size or serial numbers, which can be retrieved from the Immobilise National Property Register that the police are able to access securely via the PNC and numerous other interfaces.

Apollo is a hand-held scanner which the police and PCSOs can use to scan an item, store its data on the National Mobile Property Register and retrieve the information when suspected stolen goods come to light.

The eleven sessions for the public are being held so people can either have small items such as smartphones or laptops registered, or can bring details – including photographs – of valuable furniture or serial numbers of bikes, for example.

Coun Linsay Cunningham-Cross, cabinet member for crime, said:

Safer York Partnership is keen to use innovative technology to deliver more effective and efficient responses to tackling crime.

By taking a few minutes to register their property on Hermes and Apollo and pick up security advice, residents can not only help prevent their belongings being stolen in the first place, but can be assured that if something is stolen, they are more likely to get it back.

Supt Phil Cain said:

Often the police recover items during searches or by other means, and it’s not always clear if those goods are stolen.

By using the Immobilise register, they can find out instantly. This not only saves officer time, but helps progress investigations and means the rightful owner gets their belongings back.

The sessions will take place at the council’s West Offices, in Station Rise, on the 19th and 20th November, between 9am and 3pm.

There are also sessions at York Explore library, in Library Square, on Friday 21st from 1pm to 5pm, and on Sunday 23rd from 11.30am to 2.30pm.

There will also be sessions at York University Library from today until Friday, 9am to 3pm, or at York Art Gallery, on Saturday and Sunday, from 9am to 3pm.

To view the source article please go to: http://www.yorkpress.co.uk/news/

CheckMEND and GameStop Partner to Strengthen Electronic Trade-in Program

CheckMEND the world’s leading due diligence service for used consumer electronics today announced it has secured an agreement with GameStop to deploy its software in all GameStop’s US stores to identify devices that are not eligible for trade.

Developed by UK-based Recipero, CheckMEND is a unique, cutting edge system that allows retailers and recyclers to proactively identify unacceptable devices and stop them from entering the supply chain.

Using data that is aggregated from over 20,000 data sources (including the FBI) CheckMEND provides access to its service to both enterprise and consumers. GameStop is the first major retailer in the US to integrate its application at point of sale. With a data warehouse containing over 150 billion records of information that is relevant to any buyer of used consumer electronics, CheckMEND is fast becoming the “go-to” data provider for this type of information.

Consumers are becoming more aware of the value that exists in their old electronics. That precipitates a need for reliable data and methods to ensure that retailers are protecting consumers. GameStop is leading the way for other retailers to follow suit.

“We are delighted that GameStop has stepped up to the forefront of consumer protection” said Adrian Portlock Founder of CheckMEND. “Our product allows GameStop to protect their customers, their associates in store and their reputable brand by deterring unwanted activity. GameStop has set the bar for other responsible retailers.” “GameStop will continue to invest in technology solutions that offer our customers the best and safest choice to buy, sell or trade video games, consoles and electronics” said Joe Gorman Vice President of Mobile at GameStop. “Working with CheckMEND, we have further enhanced our process, and we are already reaping the benefits of the service in our stores and our state of the art refurbishment center.”

About CheckMEND
CheckMEND is a service provided by Recipero Limited, a privately owned U.K. company, which has specialized since 2001 in the collection of data relating to the history of used consumer electronics (www.checkmend.com). It has grown into the biggest online provider of this type of information to both the trade and the consumer and is currently focused on expanding its operations in the USA. General information on Recipero can be found on the company’s corporate website at www.recipero.com.

About GameStop Corp.
GameStop Corp. (NYSE: GME), a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 company headquartered in Grapevine, Texas, is the world’s largest multichannel video game retailer. GameStop’s retail network and family of brands include 6,602 company-operated stores in 15 countries worldwide and online at www.GameStop.com. The network also includes: www.Kongregate.com, a leading browser-based game site; Game Informer® magazine, the leading multi-platform video game publication; Spawn Labs, a streaming technology company; a digital PC game distribution platform available at www.GameStop.com/PC; and an online consumer electronics marketplace available at www.BuyMyTronics.com. General information on GameStop Corp. can be obtained at the company’s corporate website. Follow GameStop on Twitter @www.twitter.com/GameStop and find GameStop on Facebook @www.facebook.com/GameStop.

Recipero and Trace secure continuation of access to the FBI Stolen Articles file

Recipero is pleased to announce that the CJIS sub- committee that controls access to the FBI Stolen Articles file on the NCIC database has unanimously agreed that the arrangement to supply the information to the Trace service operated by Recipero should be made permanent and will recommend this to the full committee at its next meeting.

Les Gray, Recipero IT Director who attended the meeting in St Louis Missouri along with Ken Bouche, Recipero’s USA law enforcement liaison said:

“We are delighted that the FBI can see the value of providing this data to allow the public to check if an item they are buying is recorded as stolen with them. It helps enormously to cut down the markets for the disposal of stolen goods including online auction and classified sites. The moral here is if you are buying used goods check them with us first and if you are selling stolen goods beware as you may well be caught out”

Notes for readers: The NCIC file is a file of stolen property that is contributed to by all the USA law enforcement agencies. Recipero receives a copy of the entries that have the make model and serial number of the stolen item along with the name of the originating agency. This allows Recipero to operate the FREE USA Trace system at www.tracechecker.com and also to search the information in their CheckMEND life history report service.

For more information please go to: www.tracechecker.com