UK mobile theft hotspots named


%VIRTUAL-SkimlinksPromo%London, Leeds and Northampton are the three UK areas where mobile phone owners are most likely to have their device stolen, according to a new report by an insurance company.

Protect Your Bubble, which specialises in insuring modern technology, found that in London 18% of insurance claims are for theft of a mobile phone, the highest in the UK. Leeds was second, on 16%.
Stephen Ebbett, director of Protect Your Bubble, said: "Gadget owners can never be too cautious.

"Everyday we cart around hundreds, or even thousands of pounds' worth of high-tech gear, such as smartphones, tablets, cameras and e-readers.

"This makes many of us prime targets for thieves. Should you be unlucky enough to fall victim to mobile theft, specialist gadget insurance will cover you by replacing your stolen handset.

"The good news is that we're seeing mobile thefts drop. So far, 9% of mobile claims we've received in 2014 have been for theft, compared to 11% for the same period last year.

"But that doesn't mean smartphone users should be any less vigilant. People can reduce their risk of being targeted by keeping their mobiles out of sight in public. Carry them in a pocket or bag with a zip, rather than your trouser pocket, or in your hand."

The survey covered the 30 largest towns and cities in the UK, and found that Dudley, in the West Midlands, was the safest place for mobile phone owners with less than 5% of the claims received by the insurance company being for theft. According to the data gathered by Protect your Bubble, users in their early 20s were the most likely to be victims of theft.

"Mobile users can safeguard both their data and finances by blocking their phones with their airtime provider as quickly as possible after a theft - so they don't end up paying through the nose for unauthorised calls.

"Good gadget insurance will also cover the cost of unauthorised calls," said Mr Ebbert.

According to the National Mobile Phone Crime Unit, there are more than 250,000 reported cases of stolen mobile phones each year, with the unit encouraging users to install tracking apps to help trace a device after it has been stolen.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police Service said: "The Met has seen significant reductions in mobile phone crime over the last year following a range of proactive prevention and enforcement across London.

"During the financial year 2013/14, mobile phone thefts fell by 14%, while robberies that involved the theft of mobile phones were reduced by 24%.

The Met's Operation Ringtone is proving its success in reducing mobile phone crime and has now extended nationally and to Europe in a new agreement of sharing intelligence about identified criminals and the volume of mobile phone crime through organised criminal networks.

"This culminated in a mass European day of action on 20 March 2014, with involvement from eight UK police forces, Europol and other law enforcement agencies. Activity continues daily however during this one day of action, officers made 120 arrests in London for offences directly related to mobile phone crime."

Under Operation Neptune, the MPS maps second-hand markets, negotiates a voluntary Code of Conduct for premises to record sellers' personal details, checks property with the National Mobile Phone Crime Unit and informs local police when stolen property comes into their possession. There are regular visits and audit checks by local officers. In excess of 1,000 retailers are signed up and engaging in the scheme across London."

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UK mobile theft hotspots named
I was out shooting one day when my mobile phone rang. The gamekeeper confiscated it, threw it into the air and gave it both barrels of a 12 bore shotgun!
I was doing an aqua aerobics class, but left my phone in my pocket and didn’t discover it had been underwater for about half-an-hour. I decided that I would try and dry it in a sauna. Once dry I turned it on and it gave a couple of feeble flashes before dying completely.
My grandson thought it was not right for my phone to be left out on a cold day on the kitchen table instead of being put away in its cover, so he put it in the microwave to warm it up. He set the microwave on full power for an hour but it blew up long before that, along with my Samsung Galaxy.
I jumped into a swimming pool to escape a wasp, unfortunately with my mobile in my hand.
I was on holiday in Egypt and, after sunbathing for 20 minutes, I decided to go for a swim in the ocean, forgetting I had put my mobile phone in my cleavage for safekeeping. I didn’t notice until I’d been in the sea for 10 minutes, and by that time my phone had stopped working.
I went shopping for a frozen turkey and as I leaned in to try and lug a very large bird from the supermarket freezer my phone fell out of my pocket and into the bottom of the freezer. I could not reach it and had to go and seek help from a sales assistant who was taller than me. When we returned to the freezer, my phone had gone!
I once left my mobile on an armchair. When I returned my mother’s dog had decided that he liked the taste and had eaten nearly all of it.
I couldn't find my phone indoors anywhere. I went into the garden later on to find that my dog had put it in the birdbath.
My little brother took my mobile phone and destroyed it with a hammer.
My nephew put my tablet in the washing up bowl because he said it was dirty.
My four-year-old son purposely dropped my phone into a fish tank because he wanted me to buy a new BlackBerry.
I dunked my phone in my tea because I got distracted and thought it was a biscuit.
I’d had my new phone for just six days, and went to Tottenham play at White Hart Lane. Gareth Bale scored and I jumped up to celebrate whilst grabbing my phone to text my wife, dropped it and smashed the screen.
I left my Nokia phone on the living room table and went off to the kitchen to make a cuppa. When I returned my eight-month-old dog Scooby was looking a bit sheepish. About an hour later I found my mobile in Scooby's water bowl.
I was decorating our living room and had my phone in my breast pocket. As I leant over to dip a brush in a five-litre pot of paint the phone fell out and into the bottom of it.

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