REDUCE the chances of your bike being stolen: INCREASE the chances of your bike being recovered.
Bicycle theft continues as the popularity of expensive models and innovative ways of selling stolen goods online makes it appealing to thieves. Take action against this type of crime and protect your belongings, including your bike. Thieves are always on the look out for new bikes that are in a perfect condition.
Where to park?
Always lock your bicycle wherever you leave it as it only takes seconds to steal an unsecured bike. The best place to park your bike is using a designated cycle parking stand. Stations and public buildings often have designated areas with bicycle racks. Make sure it's locked securely in a well-lit public area with lots of people passing. Plan ahead and check out amenities in the places you need to leave your bicycle. Maybe there are CCTV cameras present in the area or people in the area who can provide any surveillance (eg people working in offices or sat in bars and restaurants)
Many bicycles are stolen from the owner's home. Always lock your bike at home even when it is in your garage, flat or halls of residence. Please be vigilant when returning from a ride and make sure you keep your bicycle out of view of prying eyes as this alone will provide an irresistible incentive to break in to your property. Ensure your garden shed is properly secured.
If you own a decent bicycle then it is probably a good idea to insure it. There are several ways you can do this; insure your bicycle on your home contents insurance - don't forget to cover it for thefts away from home. More expensive bicycles may require specific insurance cover against theft and accidental damage.
Registration and Police Identification
Take a photograph and record the frame number and any key details such as make, colour and model. Either mark your frame with your postcode in two separate locations if possible, one of which should be hidden or alternatively, register your details with a firm which will be crucial in recovering your bicycle should it be lost or stolen.
Consider using Bike Register which is a free service and available on line: www.bikeregister.com - which is a secure by design feature supported by the police.