Immobilise your bike...........

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
PC Frank
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Joined: 2 Jul 2009, 12:21pm

Immobilise your bike...........

Postby PC Frank » 17 Jul 2009, 9:34am

Hi everyone,
Here is something that everyone on the forum can do.....and it's free (yippee)!!

Register your bike on www.immobilise.com which is a property registration website that is supported by most UK police forces.

When you visit the site you will be asked to enter your email address and confirm. You will then be asked how you heard of the website. If you are registering as a result of what I am posting, then please highlight 'Bristol Police'.

You will then be asked to add an inventory item and will be able to select a form for bikes. Complete the details including the frame number as an identifier. The more detail you add, the better. You can also add an image of your bike.

After you have registered your bike, keep an eye on your email account for an email confirming your login name and password (this may take as long as a few weeks). Don't forget to check your junk mail folder as the message may land in there.

Once you have your account details, you can log in to your account and add details of mobile phones, laptops and just about anything electrical which has a serial number.

If your bike (or other item) is lost or stolen, and comes into police possession, then it should be checked on a separate secure law enforcement database which is linked to immobilise. If it is on there, then your lost posseion can be returned to you.

Furthermore, if the check is done on the street whilst in the clutches of a criminal, they can be arrested and hopefully charged with theft (hurrah)!

The effectiveness of this system relies upon people registering their belongings on immobilise - so the more of you that take advantage of this, the better.

There is nothing more frustrating than stopping some one on a bike that you know is stolen (copper's instinct), and having to let them and the bike go, because you can't prove that it's not their bike.

"Aha PC Frank" I hear you cry "What if I register my bike, and the so-and-so who steals it grinds off the frame number"?

Many bike theives are so brazen that they don't bother to conceal the identity of the bike. Also, if you explore the immobilise website, you will find a product which helps to negate this.

Stay safe and vigilant,

PC Frank

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julk
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Joined: 5 Jan 2007, 8:17pm
Location: Dalkeith

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby julk » 17 Jul 2009, 5:57pm

PC Frank,

Many thanks, I have just registered and added my bike.
It was quick and easy, including adding a picture (jpeg) of 2Mb or less.
The confirmation e-mail came back within minutes.

julk.

Kirst
Posts: 375
Joined: 16 Nov 2007, 7:38pm
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby Kirst » 20 Jul 2009, 12:49pm

My bike doesn't have a frame number.
I can handle bars and cycle paths but I can't handle cars and psychopaths

http://action.hopenothate.org.uk/page/s/notinmyname

gilesjuk
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Joined: 17 Mar 2008, 10:10pm

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby gilesjuk » 20 Jul 2009, 1:03pm

Have one stamped on or engrave one.

PC Frank
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Joined: 2 Jul 2009, 12:21pm

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby PC Frank » 25 Aug 2009, 9:44am

Kirst wrote:My bike doesn't have a frame number.


There are electronic tags available which are concealed in the bike frame. These are linked to the immobilise website and the serial number on the microchip can act as an identifying number for your bike.

Please visit www.immobilise.com for more details.

mark a.
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Joined: 8 Jan 2007, 2:47pm
Location: Surrey

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby mark a. » 25 Aug 2009, 10:26am

I signed up to Immobilise a fair while ago now. It took me ages to actually do it, though, since there were no obvious assurances that the website was legit. Any old scammer website can say "Give us all the details of your high-value items - we're linked with the police, honest". I can't remember how I got over that - I probably found links from police or insurance websites.

Just had another look and the website is much better now and gives a better impression of being legit.

It's a good service - I've scanned in proof of purchase etc for my bike and electronics and it was easy to do. Fingers crossed I won't actually need to use it, though. I also hope that I can actually remember my login details!

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Mick F
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Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby Mick F » 25 Aug 2009, 11:37am

" ....... proof of purchase ......."

That could be difficult. What sort of proof?

My bike is a collection of components, each bit being bought separately over the last 23 years and has never been the same each year. How would I record that the bike was different from when I registered?

Or, would only my frame be registered and tagged? I have hundreds of pounds-worth of components. Some might say that my components are worth more than my frame!

I'm not being awkward, I'm just a little sceptical about this system.
Mick F. Cornwall

minkie
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Joined: 27 Jul 2007, 7:11pm
Location: Sale

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby minkie » 25 Aug 2009, 12:33pm

I can see this may a good tool for catching thieves - assuming widespread takeup by the police, as well as by cyclists. Is it widely used by all forces?

At a selfish level, if my bike is stolen and my insurance pays up I'll then buy a replacement. I've no idea what would happen if the stolen bike is subsequenty recovered, but it sounds as though things might get complicated.

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Mick F
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Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby Mick F » 25 Aug 2009, 12:59pm

Yes, complicated.

This system smacks of cars, household electrical goodies, lawnmowers, jewelry ........ not bikes.

With anything stolen and the insurance payout is done, then subsequently the stolen item is found, it technically belongs to the insurance company. What they'd do with a bike, I dunno! Cars and other goods are sold via auctions, or even scrapped.

If I was a bike thief, I'd strip the components off and sell them separately. If I knew what I was nicking, I'd only pick a bike with good stuff on. All the bits would sell better individually and for a higher total price than the complete bike.
(Car thieves do this frequently)

Frame could be "doctored" and then sold too.

Easy!

This Immobilise system doesn't sound too good to me. No wonder it's free.
Mick F. Cornwall

mark a.
Posts: 1358
Joined: 8 Jan 2007, 2:47pm
Location: Surrey

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby mark a. » 25 Aug 2009, 1:23pm

I bought the bike complete, so I've scanned in the receipt. There's no requirement for me to do that, but I just thought it would be handy to have it there in case I ever lose the original documents.

You can put down as much or as little information as you like, which may or may not help if the bike is nicked. There's nothing stopping you from putting in each individual component in separately if you'd prefer. Probably a good idea, actually, then everything is covered and it doesn't matter if things are sold separately. Of course, the police and insurers are more likely to be on the lookout for stolen bikes rather than stolen headsets.

It's not a perfect system, but I reckon it's better than not doing it at all.

random37
Posts: 1952
Joined: 19 Sep 2008, 4:41pm

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby random37 » 25 Aug 2009, 2:25pm

My understanding of bike theft is a lot of bikes are stripped and reassembled onto other bikes. I know of quite a few markets where the stallholders sell bikes that I'm sure must be stolen.

The problem is, how do you identify these parts? You can't stamp numbers on everything.

Can I ask, how big a takeup from the various police forces has there been with Smartwater? Our local police have been giving bottles to people around us. Is it worth our while using this?

http://www.smartwater.co.uk/

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Mick F
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Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby Mick F » 25 Aug 2009, 2:27pm

mark a. wrote:It's not a perfect system, but I reckon it's better than not doing it at all.
You may be right, Mark, but I don't think that I'll bother.
(I'm honestly not being awkward or argumentative.)

I don't leave mine unattended unless I'm nearby - shops, cafe's, the like - and always in sight with a good view of the surrounding area.

I wouldn't mind some sort of ear-piercing movement-sensitive alarm, such as that when it's energised and anyone moves my bike, they get an earful of squealing and screeching! Also some sort of tracking device.

Registering my bike with the police seems to be shutting the barn door after the horse has bolted.
Mick F. Cornwall

mark a.
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Joined: 8 Jan 2007, 2:47pm
Location: Surrey

Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby mark a. » 25 Aug 2009, 2:43pm

Fair enough. Mine's a commuter bike so it sits unattended for long periods. Even with 2 decent locks and an electronic tag thingy there's still a chance it will go walkies.

I see the Immobilise thing as something similar to insurance - I'll do my best never to need to use it but it's a handy backup (well, potentially, anyway) if everything else fails.

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Jeromek2
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Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby Jeromek2 » 7 Sep 2009, 4:45pm

In addition to Immobilise (which is generalised), there are several Bike-Sprecific sites on the net where you can proactively register and tag your bike, like http://www.BikeRegistry.com. These are free and go a long way toward enabling recovery in the event you get pinched.

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quiksilver
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Re: Immobilise your bike...........

Postby quiksilver » 8 Sep 2009, 12:10pm

Personally I have never had any of my bikes stolen, one of my cars once but thats another story. I don't think I would bother registering either I would rather concerntrate on not having the bike stolen in the first place. Apart from when mine is being ridden its always locked up. With at least two good quality locks (Kyrptonite Evo Mini & Abus Granite) and to something large and immovable and in a public a place as possible. I find it amazing how many ridders buy an expensive bike, say in excess of £500 then spend diddlysquat on a lock.