The Journal has an article today saying that the Gardaí have reported that almost 8,000 mobile phones were reported stolen in Ireland in the first half of 2012. This was a 20% in crease on the previous year. They also reported that most mobile phones are stolen from their owner’s hand while being used on the street. iPhones seem to be the most popular devices stolen according to a number of insurance companies with one company reporting 82% of it’s mobile phone claims were for iPhones and another reporting a 50/50 split between iPhone theft and other high-end smartphones including the Samsung Galaxy SIII. They also stated that “one-quarter of all the company’s mobile phone insurance claims resulted from ‘direct theft'”.

Below is some helpful tips from the Gardaí.

The following practical measures can help in preventing and reducing mobile phone theft;

· Register your mobile phone with your service provider.

· Take careful note of your unique 15 digit mobile phone International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number. By pressing *#06# on your phone keypad the IMEI will appear on the screen.

· Enable the PIN Security feature and keep your phone locked at all times.

· When out and about, keep your mobile phone out of public view, be streetwise and always be aware of your surroundings.

· Never leave your mobile phone behind in an unattended vehicle.

· If your mobile phone is lost or stolen, contact your mobile phone service provider immediately to suspend your service and prevent unauthorised calls being made and billed to you.

· Your provider will block your SIM card and IMEI number to prevent your phone from being used on the mobile network.

· Report the loss or theft to An Garda Síochána, providing identification numbers for your SIM card and IMEI number. This information may assist in the recovery of your mobile phone.

The Gardaí have a useful information leaflet on mobile phone theft prevention which you can have a read of here