There are a few simple things you can do to protect your belongings:
- make list of all the valuable items you have
- get contents insurance
- use a UV pen to mark your property with your house number and postcode
- use the built in security features for computers, tablets and mobile phones
- register more expensive items
Registering your belongings
You can register expensive items with Immobilise, the UK National Property Register. Immobilise helps police return stolen goods to their owners. Register an account for free and list as many items as you want. You can flag items if they get stolen.
Valuables at home
Get in the habit of locking doors and windows when you go out. It sounds obvious, but it is tempting not to bother if you're just popping out for a few minutes.
If you live in shared or student accommodation make sure you have a good lock on your door. If you’re a student, remember student houses and university halls of residence are more likely to be burgled out of term time. Bring any valuable items with you or move them elsewhere.
Carrying your belongings around
When you're out and about, there are a few things to remember that can help you protect your belongings.
It's a lot easier for someone to take your wallet or mobile phone out of a back pocket, so always carry them in a front one or in your fastened up bag. When you need to pay for something or use a cash machine, only take your wallet out when you need to and make sure you don't flash your cash about. Same goes for your phone.
If you're carrying a bag, try to have it around your front with your hand over the fastening. This will make it easier for you to tell if someone is attempting to snatch it.
If you like to listen to music on the go remember to:
- keep the volume down so you can still hear what’s going on around you
- carry your iPod, MP3 player or mobile in an inside pocket
- keep headphone wires hidden beneath your clothes
Protecting your mobile
You can protect your mobile by:
- keeping the details of your phone somewhere safe – make, model and IMEI number (find the IMEI number by dialling *#06#)
- using the phone’s built in security features – check the instruction manual
- registering your phone with Immobilise
There are apps available that can help you secure your mobile. You can also set up features like ‘Find my iphone’, that allow you to track your phone if it’s stolen.
If your phone is stolen
Call your phone. You may just have left it somewhere and it has been picked it up or handed in to the police or a nearby store.
If you don’t get an answer, you should report the phone as stolen to the police.
If you have a tracking app on your phone activate it. But don’t be tempted to track it down yourself. Leave that to the police.
You should contact your network provider and tell them your phone has been stolen. They'll be able to block the handset and SIM card so that they can't be used.
If you’re worried about personal information or sensitive accounts you have on your phone, you can log in from a computer and change your passwords. Some web based apps and services may also have an option for removing a device from your account.
Protecting your bike
Buy a strong and reliable lock you can use to secure your bike. You should also:
- keep details of the make, model and serial numbers
- mark your bike with your post code and house number
- register your bike
Find out more about registering your bike at the link below.