Tracking Device Catches Bike Thieves
After a sharp rise in reports of bicycle theft in the Denver region a local news team decided to get involved. The goal of the television report was to show firsthand how easy it was for bike thieves to target and steal bicycles only protected by weak cable locks. The local news team devised a plan to equip a bicycle with a GPS asset monitoring system, place the bicycle in an area where crime rates were above normal, lock the bicycle to a bike rack using a simple cable lock and then see what unfolded.
About The GPS Tracker Device
The asset tracker used during the news team investigation was camouflaged in the bike light located in the rear of sedition. The asset tracker was a real-time monitoring system that uploaded positional information every 30 seconds that could be accessed online. The tracker device was even programmed to send out an alert via SMS message the moment the bike was moved. This way if a thief cut the cable locks and stole the bike the news team would be alerted immediately. The bicycle used by the news team was a mountain bike designed by Huffy and valued less than $100.
The first location the news team locked the bike up was at a Denver Library located downtown, and it didn’t take even two days before the GPS tracker device transmitted an alert indicated the bicycle was stolen. The tracking data led the news team to two men who claimed they simply found the bicycle and had the intention of notifying authorities about the lost bike. However, video surveillance footage captured from a camera system at the library showed the two men pulling on the bicycle as it was set to the bike rack and eventually cutting the security cable locks and running off with the bicycle. A Denver police detective took all of the evidence from the GPS asset tracker and video information and stated he would review the data to determine if charges would be pressed against the two men involved with the bicycle theft. Ryan Steele, a Denver area resident, understands all too well the problem with bike theft in down town Denver. This is because he was the victim of bike theft when his chained up bicycle valued over $8,000 was taken by thieves. Steele told the news team he was “shocked” when his bicycle was stolen because he felt proper security measures were taken when he used cable locks to secure his bicycle to a bike rack. Unfortunately, he underestimated the perseverance of thieves seeking to make a quick dollar flipping stolen goods.
Tips To Increase Bicycle Security
- Have Up-To-Date Photographs Of The Bicycle
- Keep All Purchasing Documentation Such As Receipts
- Register The Bicycle Using The Serial Number (Typically Located On Pedal)
- Avoid Leaving A Bicycle Locked Up Overnight In Public
- Consider Using Multiple Types Of Locks
- Secure The Frame When Locking The Bicycle Not Just The Tire
- Remove Accessories On Bikes That Could Tempt Thieves
If your bike is stolen, contact police and file a report. You may find your bike on Craiglist or EBay. Try to spread the word on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. If you do think you found your bike for sale online, don’t approach the seller yourself. Call police.