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Cycle Security
According to a 2007 BBC report, around 150,000 bicycles are stolen across Britain every year. With bikes costing anything from £100 upwards then it is not surprising some see cycle theft as easy pickings. If you commute by bike, then inevitably you will have to leave your bike unattended for considerable periods of time. Therefore it is worthwhile taking a few precautions to prevent you adding to the BBC's statistic.
 
This page provides a few (very) basic guidelines on securing your bike at work, and at home, and also what to do if your bike is stolen.

 
Bike Security Away From Home
- Lock it, or loose it! Always lock a cycle when leaving it, even if it's only for a few minutes while you nip into a shop. A thief only needs a couple of seconds. See our guide to choosing a bike lock.
- Lock your bike in a well lit and busy area - never in isolated places. If possible park alongside other parked bikes - the chances are that someone else's is more desirable than yours.
- Secure bikes to proper stands or robust street furniture. If using street furniture be considerate, after all you do not want your bike to be forcibly removed because it is causing an obstruction.
- Lock cycles through the frame, front wheel and your chosen immovable object.
- Lock quick release wheels to the frame or remove them completely.
- Remove smaller parts and accessories that can't be secured, especially lights, pumps, panniers and quick release saddles.
- Keep a record of the frame number, colour, size, make, and model (take a picture) and consider having your bike security marked, either post code stamped or use one of the electronic means. A good starting point is to fill out a bike passport for your cycle. Follow our link to print off and fill in a copy of Grampian Police's version of a bike passport.
- Consider insuring your bike. The easiest way to do this is to extend your home contents insurance to cover your bicycle, though check it covers you for thefts outside the home too. Failing this, you may need to take out specialist insurance.

 
Bike Security at Home
It may surprise you to know that more than half of cycle theft happens at the owner's home, from garages, sheds etc so it is worthwhile taking a few precautions here as well.
- Lock it, or loose it!
- Consider installing a steel loop or other fixed anchor point to a wall for locking your bike to.
- Make sure the place you keep your bike is secure. If in a shed or garage, then always lock them when leaving your bike.

 
What to do if your bike is stolen
Report the theft to the police. Even if you don't think you are likely to get your cycle back it is still worthwhile reporting it. You can report incidents either by phone or in person at the police station local to where you lost your bike.
The police will want information from you, so the more you can provide the better. That is why we recommend keeping a record of the frame number, colour, size, make, model, special components, etc. Also keep a picture. You will also have to state where and when it was stolen.
When you report the theft ask for your "CAD" (Computer Aided Despatch) or "CRIS" (Crime Reference Information System') number. Having a number will help you to trace the progress of your case.
Report the theft to your insurance company or insurance broker, if you have insurance against cycle theft. All insurers will require a police crime number, and some may even ask for the broken chain and lock.

 

 
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