Don't be a victim of theft and another statistic recorded on the crime list database. In the UK, thousands of bikes are stolen every year. The vast majority are never recovered. Minimise the risk by following some simple security advice.
MINIMIZING THE PROBLEM
If you take any security advice from this page, let it be this: USE whatever security devices you have. If you're finding it all too much hassle, consider zero input devices like an approved self-alarming alarm/immobiliser.
Don't leave your keys in the bike, even for a short time. Always keep your keys with you and NOT at home. Thieves are increasingly breaking into houses just to get the keys to your bike and your registration documents.
Don't buy used bike spares as these may well have originated from a stolen bike. It's demand that creates the problem in the first place.
Breadth and diversity of security devices is the enemy of the thief. If it looks like hassle for him, he is more likely to move on to easier prey. We recommend a combination of Marking, Alarm/immobilisers, Tracking systems and Mechanical devices.
Is your property permanently marked?
When the police find property (or parts) believed to be stolen, they usually cannot identify the owner. Marking your property will help to convict a thief or handler of stolen parts. Any form of marking is better than none. Use an ultra violet pen to mark body panels, seats and engine components, or preferably fit a Datatag electronic tagging kit, supplied by the bike alarm man and recognised by insurers.
ALARMS & IMMOBILISERS
These generally fall into two categories, the DIY or professionally installed. If you are unsure about which system to purchase, ask your insurance broker about recommended products. Look for "Thatcham" or "Sold Secure" approval. Thatcham (The Motor Industry Repair Research Centre) and Sold Secure test and list approved products as they are the insurance industry's appointed bodies responsible for setting security standards.
Thatcham approved systems must be installed by authorised engineers and usually cost much more than the DIY varieties, but invariably there will be added benefits of high security, higher quality, longer warranty, reduced insurance premium, lower excess and peace of mind. Most bike manufacturers recognise Thatcham listed systems, which may benefit you if your bike is covered by the manufacturer's warranty. The bike alarm man works to the highest standards, trained, authorised installer of all the major alarm brands, providing a certificate of installation for your insurer.
DIY systems may be cheaper but insurance companies will not usually offer incentives for these products. These systems can be easily installed, providing that the installer has a modicum of electrical knowledge, but are often easily bypassed. Their worth as a deterrent should not be ignored as they can offer a reasonable form of secondary security.
Remember, even if you cannot afford the best, cheaper products will offer a level of deterrent to a thief and could make the difference.
Security devices can pay for themselves, partially through insurance discounts for devices approved by your insurance company (ask them BEFORE you buy anything as they all differ), but mainly by maintaining your No Claims Bonus and avoiding the true cost of having to make a claim (the excess, increased future premiums, potential withdrawal of cover, etc.).
Consider the option of a pager, text messaging device or tracking system.
Good quality locks, chains, ground anchors and disk locks should last you for life. We usually stock a good quality selection of hard security products.
Make sure your garage/shed is secure, as once inside and out of sight, thieves have more time to defeat your security. Standard garage door locks are of little deterrence so add a couple more quality locks to the weak points. If possible try extending the house alarm to cover the garage/shed or fit a separate garage alarm. Most bike alarms can also be extended to cover the garage/shed itself. All this will make the rest of your garage/shed contents more secure too, but try not to leave your tools next to your bike as thieves may use them to help override your security.