Unfortunately some people do fall victim to burglary despite taking steps to protect their homes. Here are some additional actions you can take to protect your property if it is stolen which may make getting it back to you more likely.
Scroll down to see our tips.
If you'd like to see our quick actions list instead (quick tips that you can do right away) or our planned actions list then use the links on the right or below.
Register your valuable property with Immobilise or BikeRegister
You can register your mobile phone, games consoles, bikes, cameras, tablets and laptops with Immobilise. BikeRegister specialises in bikes: https://www.bikeregister.com/
You can then report your device as lost or stolen. It will then show up in searches on police force computer systems as well as at CheckMEND which second-hand traders use to check items they are buying and selling.
Make a note of any suspicious people or vehicles in your area
If you or a neighbour is burgled you will be asked if you’ve seen any suspicious people or vehicles in the area. Make a note of registration numbers, car colours, makes & models, people’s height, clothes, facial hair, ethnicity, tattoos, markings and anything else you think might help identify someone. This information might help us make a link to someone which may result in your belongings being returned.
Record the serial numbers and MAC addresses for electronic items as soon as you buy them
If your property is ever recovered it’s much easier to trace them back to you if you have the serial number or MAC (media access control) address.
Making a note of these serial numbers is also an advantage if you’re trying to replace them with an insurer.
Use forensic property marking on your valuables
Forensic property marking is a traceable liquid that’s only visible under UV light. It acts like DNA and contains a unique serial number that’s almost impossible to remove.
Products such as SmartWater, SelectaDNA and DNANet can quickly and easily create a permanent link to yourself.
In Gloucestershire we also scan every person who comes into our Phoenix House custody suite in our very own UV scanner. If someone has been in contact with your property and has markings on their clothes, skin, nails or hair we can link that person forensically to your property.
Back up your phone, tablet or laptop
All of your photo memories, contacts, text messages and notes can easily be backed up with Apple iCloud, Google Drive and other services.
Most backup daily, over Wi-Fi, when they’re plugged into a power source.
Both Google and Apple offer a small amount of storage, 15GB and 5GB respectively, free with their devices as standard. You can also pay 79 pence a month for 50GB of storage with Apple and around £1.30 a month for 100GB with Google. Android devices also have many third-party backup providers at low costs too.
Protecting your memories by making backups doesn't cost very much; if your devices are ever stolen the only pain will be financial.