back to article Look out, fanbois: One in two nicked mobes is an iPhone - cops

Half of the phones stolen in London over the summer were iPhones, the capital's cops reported this week. According to new statistics, phone-related crime, particularly snatching, was up year on year. Between April and September, 28,800 mobes out of 56,680 nicked handsets in London were Apple pocket strokers. That's an average …

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  1. o5ky
    Thumb Up

    so dont buy an iPhone (or look like a mug who buys one) and you'll be less likely to have your phone stolen :)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      That's like the Police saying to women to not dress up like "sluts" and they won't get raped.

      You're shifting the blame onto the victim away from the criminal.

      1. wowfood

        What about telling girls you wouldn't stare at their breasts / bottoms if they didn't dress like sluts, is that more acceptable?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          I'm not sure, but it sounds a little Amish to me ;)

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        OR making the victim realise that they played a part too!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Facepalm

      No, put it away

      Anyone who doesn't keep their phone in their pocket or bag is tempting fate. Yes, so the iShiny is the desirable phone to have, but for God's sake, be sensible and put it away!

      1. Lord Voldemortgage

        Re: No, put it away

        It's not a lot of use stuffed in a bag.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "they're not a lot of use stuffed in a bag"

          Wait, are you still on about mobes, or was it about female body parts?

        2. This post has been deleted by its author

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Thumb Down

          Re: No, put it away @Lord Voldemortgage

          Ever heard of... OMG... a handsfree kit? Or... *gasp* earphones?

          The majority of phones are stolen because they are left on a table, or in plain view where an opportunist thief can walk by and swipe it. Leave the phone in your jacket pocket, or in a purse (if you're female), or a bag. When the damn thing rings, you take it out. Problem solved. I have *never* had a phone stolen, probably because I'm sensible about where I put my phone. My phone stays out of sight until I need to use it.

          Those who constantly have their iThingies stolen should learn to... put it away. We *know* you have one. We don't *care*. Get over it.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: No, put it away

        "Yes, so the iShiny is the desirable phone to have last decade......

      3. Mark .

        Re: No, put it away

        Indeed - whilst victim blaming is wrong, it's not unreasonable to take precautions, like not advertising expensive goods (as many advertisements tell us).

        I can't help noticing that it's almost always Apple users who walk around carrying their phones in front of them - why this is, I don't know. On top of that, the fewer models makes them more recognisable as an expensive phone, and you've got the obvious huge logo on the front, whilst most phones are much more subtle.

        Plus, I have to wonder why this is news anyway - smells like another "It's news, because it's got Apple in the title". Would the police be reporting this if it was any other manufacturer coming up to? Reminds me of the spate of "ipads getting stolen" media stories, that just act as more Appleverts...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      50% of stolen phones are iPhones which only account for 23% of the market share.

      There must be a lot of dross out there.

  2. Fab De Marco

    Apple a Victim of their own success

    Is it not simple, thieves are stealing to sell and iPhones are (rightly or wrongly) more desirable amongst the general population. IMEI blocking only works to block the phone in the country of origin, so until this goes global, mobile phones will continue to be targeted by crooks.

    Unless people are looking to buy an elaborate iPod touch.......Lets face it, not far from the truth if you buy it from the Apple store.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Apple a Victim of their own success

      I would have thought it was more down to people with good phone insurance ...

      "I have this iPhone, and I can't get my money back, but I do have phone insurance" ...

      At least my boss would agree ... his swear jar for this year is full already.

    2. Sooty

      Re: Apple a Victim of their own success

      iPhones don't exactly have to rely on just imei blocking. You have to activate the things via apple, reporting it as stolen should get the imei and the serial number blocked from their networks too, leaving only jailbreaks to get around it.

      In theory they should be more difficult to deal with stolen due to the walled garden of apple/iTunes. Admittedly you could use it standalone, but it relies entirely on third party tools and functionality.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Apple a Victim of their own success

        You have to activate the things via apple, reporting it as stolen should get the imei and the serial number blocked from their networks too, leaving only jailbreaks to get around it.

        The problem with that is that you have to enable tracking for the iPhone (it's tied to that service), which allows location tracking data to be shipped to a Unsafe Harbor nation. You are thus faced with a choice: give an untrusted 3rd party full knowledge of where you are at all times of be sure the phone won't come back when it gets nicked. Depends on your privacy needs, of course.

    3. Mark .

      Re: Apple a Victim of their own success

      Thieves don't go for what's more desirable (Android is the biggest platform, Samsung sells more Android phones alone, and the S3 is the biggest single selling model), they go for what's most expensive. With the added bonus here of being far more easily recognisable.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Presumably this also means around 1-in-2 stolen phones BOUGHT is an iPhone too, meaning fanbois are, on average, more inherently criminal than the rest of the population?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Fanboys would buy one new. People buying hooky goods buy whatever is on offer.

      People stealing the phones go for Apple since it is easily recognisable.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Fanboys would buy one new.

        Nah, don't you read all those comments about "I sold my 5 year old iPhone 3 for 95% of the original purchase price on Ebay?" Somebody has to be buying all of them

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Maybe the crims are exhibiting brand loyalty but decided to go for a big discount this time ;)

      3. Gordon 11

        People stealing the phones go for Apple since it is easily recognisable.

        By that reasoning there would be lots of Samsung 'phones stolen too, as we all know that Samsung 'phones just copy the look of Apple ones.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "People stealing the phones go for Apple since it is easily recognisable"

        Yeah! Clones.

    2. Whitter
      Pirate

      Stolen != Bought (Well, not necessarily anyway)

      That assumes that they were actually stolen: not just a lie to get the next hipster model on insurance.

  4. Kevin Johnston

    I wonder

    are these figures possibly being massaged by people who want an iPhone but can't afford a new one so when the chance arises it is 'of course it was an iPhone6 officer, would I fib to you?'

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    Odd

    It's tricky to know what the demographics of iPhone and Android are, Rich young people buy iPhones but lots of normal young people buy cheaper Android handsets. As a % of the youth I can't imagine the iPhone being the most popular just through it's cost and they don't sell enough to cover the majority of the demographic.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Cut the bullsh*te

      "It's tricky to know what the demographics of iPhone and Android are, Rich young people buy iPhones but lots of normal young people buy cheaper Android handsets. As a % of the youth I can't imagine the iPhone being the most popular just through it's cost and they don't sell enough to cover the majority of the demographic."

      Same tragic old story repeated and bleated by the sam old folk.

      iPhones are NOT expensive! They do NOT imbue the owner with a greater status or image or wealth.

      If anything they imbue PIKEY through and through.

      So, ladies, stop the iPhone is expensive crap, eh?

      1. Tom 38 Silver badge
        Facepalm

        Re: Cut the bullsh*te

        And Obviously! has never said in the past that iphones are expensive tat.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Cut the bullsh*te

        You have changed your tune (or should that be iTune?).

        Apple marketeers made the iPhone desirable to the spivs. The spivs hail Apple and because it's expensive, makes them feel special. The spivs now believe the hype spouted by the Apple marketeers.

        http://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/3/2011/08/19/apple_samsung/#c_1151622

  6. Fihart

    Safer to carry an iPhone ?

    As reported somewhere/sometime, mugger disappointed that you only have a 5 year old Nokia will stab you just out of pique.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Pirate

      Re: Safer to carry an iPhone ?

      Damn, and I thought I was safe with my N8.

      1. Darryl
        Thumb Up

        Re: Safer to carry an iPhone ?

        Yeah, but you can beat a mugger to death with a Nokia

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Safer to carry an iPhone ?

          "Yeah, but you can beat a mugger to death with a Nokia"

          If they are an iPhone owner, they could just BORE you to death with the same old wives tales they heard last decade and still cling too.

          1. Toothpick
            Mushroom

            Re: Safer to carry an iPhone ?

            "If they are an iPhone owner, they could just BORE you to death with the same old wives tales they heard last decade and still cling too."

            Alternatively you could bore everyone on here to death with your usual crap.

  7. M7S

    Tellingly....

    From the Evening Standard (so treat with caution) "The Met is in talks with Apple in an effort to make iPhones more secure. But privately police admit that mobile phone companies are unlikely to take serious action when every theft means someone probably buying another handset".

    1. pPPPP

      Re: Tellingly....

      Yep. The more they're stolen, the more they sell. Same reason they're not built to last.

  8. The Bit Wrangler
    Meh

    I'd have thought...

    ...the main reason for this is that iPhone owners (amazingly, still) sit on the tube and walk about with their phone on display. Even when they're not using them I've seen so many iPhone owners simply brandishing them. I've got news, guys, the only people that do care are the ones who've made this stat a reality.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I'd have thought...

      If I had a Samsung I would keep it well hidden.

      1. Rob
        Coat

        Re: I'd have thought...

        I take it you are ashamed of your identity, seeing as you've hidden that as well.

        (sorry couldn't resist)

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I'd have thought...

        "If I had a Samsung I would keep it well hidden."

        What with? A house? They're enormous! The thieves are probably worried they might get hit with it.

    2. Tom 38 Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: I'd have thought...

      What a load of bollocks. A large majority of people on the tube use their phone/tablet/kindle on the tube, irrelevant of what phone they have. This morning, I saw iphones, a galaxy s, one guy with an ipad, and a whole mess of kindles and nooks.

      1. Mark .

        Re: I'd have thought...

        So you saw multiple iphones, and only one other phone - given that iphones are a minority of the market, this kind of proves his point.

        (And I agree with him, and not just in London, and the point isn't simply when they're using it - I see people who always carry it in their hands, even when walking and not using it, and it seems to be almost always iphones. When they're listening on headphones, reminds me of an Ood.)

  9. wowfood
    Trollface

    Here's why

    It is a proven fact* all apple fanbois are hipsters

    It is also a proven fact* that hipsters spend their days in coffee shops with their iGadgetz out.

    It is also a proven fact* that they'll leave the table at some point, for another coffee, or a loo break, and leave their phone on the table.

    Okay so none of those facts are proven, but the last one is fairly accurate. I used to go to a coffee shop to meet up with a few friends, the number of people who got up and walked off while leaving their phone on the table was astounding, and yet 9/10 it was an iPhone.

    * These facts are fictional

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No point stealing Android - pretty worthless second hand - or new for that matter ;)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Yeah, they go for the wallet instead knowing this person hasn't spent all their cash on a mediocre phone.

      1. It'sa Mea... Mario
        Trollface

        "Yeah, they go for the wallet instead knowing this person hasn't spent all their cash on a mediocre phone."

        Or not, cause if you cannot afford an iPhone then is the wallet worth having?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Apple Can Drive Down Crime

      "No point stealing Android - pretty worthless second hand - or new for that matter ;)"

      Well, that said, if the thieves and muggers used Apple maps to try and locate their potential mark/destination you can pretty much guarantee they'll probably end up in the middle of the North Sea. Ergo stealing iPhones could help drive crime against the person down :)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Apple Can Drive Down Crime

        Except if you knew squat you would realise the iMaps issue is greatly exaggerated by non-iPhone users and regardless we now have both iMaps and Google Maps and the new Google Maps client is better than the previous Google Maps in iOS 5.

        So before anyone claims Google Maps is perfect I am reminded of this:

        http://au.news.yahoo.com/technology/news/article/-/15610781/police-warn-of-safety-concerns-from-google-maps/

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Apple Can Drive Down Crime

          Awhh, bless. I know what you mean though, iMaps is quality beyond compare.

          In fact it was such a quality product around launch Apple rewarded Richard Williamson with a cardboard box and a ride home, ne'er to return.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Apple Can Drive Down Crime

            Never said iMaps were perfect but neither are Google Maps - at least I have both. iMaps are actually better in some places and the routing when driving seems more optimal - but as I said I have both.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "No point stealing Android - pretty worthless second hand - or new for that matter ;)"

      More like they can't run away with them. Have you seen the size of the things!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Even thieves have standards it seems.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    As a thief - nick an iPhone and you know it's of decent value - nick a non-iPhone and it could be anything and mostly are worthless - iPhones have good resale value (check eBay if you don't believe me - I've seen 2 year old phones going for more than half original price).

    If Android owners want to get their devices stolen perhaps they should get some small Apple logo stickers and attach them to the back of their phones - I actually bet some people do (bit like de-badging their basic model car or sticking a M3 badge on a BMW 316i).

  12. The Alpha Klutz

    BOOM HEADSHOT

    The iphone is easy to snatch because of its cumbersome shape and short battery life. you could walk through an office and steal 20 or 40 because they have to be on charge all day. and on the street you just look like a twat carrying one so i would nick it from you jsut to teach you a lesson quite frankly and i know many who would do the same.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: BOOM HEADSHOT

      So your saying the iPhone is a unique shape. Apple would like you to sit on a jury in a small legal case they have going against Samsung.

      1. Tom 35 Silver badge

        Re: BOOM HEADSHOT

        "Apple would like you to sit on a jury in a small legal case they have going against Samsung."

        No they don't.

        They say customers can't tell them apart so there should be tons of Samsung phones being stolen. Crook went out to steal a iPhone but got confused and took a Samsung. Apple has been deprived a replacement sale! Apple should be compensated for every Samsung stolen!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: BOOM HEADSHOT

      " i would nick it from you jsut to teach you a lesson quite frankly and i know many who would do the same."

      And there you have it officer. It's always the dim ones who can't help confessing.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "The most common profile for all [robbery] victims however is a young professional likely to be aged between 20 and 30, out and about in the capital at an entertainment spot or other public places."

    That explains it. Android owners are more likely to be at home rooting their phone.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Paris Hilton

      Android owners are more likely to be at home rooting their phone.

      fnarr fnarr fnarr

      I didn't realise that was now a feature. I guess it explains the increase in phone size...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "That explains it. Android owners are more likely to be at home rooting their phone."

      Or:

      "That explains it. Android owners are more likely to be at their parents home (still) rooting their phone and watching re-runs of Magnum or Baywatch and drooling (or worse) over Pammy and dreaming of getting a girlfriend one day."

  14. Mr Shouty
    Black Helicopters

    Old news, but still worth re-iterating

    At the end of the day if you have any smartphone you are at risk of being mugged. Apple, Android, Blackberry (well, maybe not them so much) are targets especially if you are walking down the street at night - these things light up like a huge beacon just begging opportunistic louts to go over and take it. Then you have the 'fanbois' who walk around like a giant apple advert.

    I have an iphone. So far (touch wood) nobody has tried to 'relieve' me of it - I suspect that's partly because I don't whip it out at every opportunitiy to show off crappy instagrammed photos of my lunch, and I also ditched those crappy white headphones early on (Sennheiser ftw?).

    This is not a new problem by any means - and happens all over (http://gizmodo.com/5953494/hold-on-tight-smartphone-mugging-is-more-popular-than-ever) - Maybe if people stopped advertising they have expensive tech products they might make themselves less noticeable to the criminal element. But I imagine most fanbois are very proud of their iDevices and love showing it off to anyone who will listen.

    I make use of iCloud for backups, which in turn allows me to use the 'find my iphone' tool. Mind you, if I do lose my phone, it's maybe a few days inconvenience till I can either retrieve my handset (after remote bricking) or get a new one and restore from my backup. I'm less phased about the hardware, I am more concerned about the data that's stored on it.

    I have read a few stories of people having their iDevices lost/nicked and then located through this service - which is pretty great, but as to how responsive the authorities are with this info is a bit unclear to me - have yet to see any articles that talk of people being caught and prosecuted thanks to this service.

    That's not to say it doesn't happen - but surely more people need to know about such things and that essentially stealing mobile phones is a losing game that could land you in jail unless you can kill off a GPS signal without destroying the phone in the process.. Just make them less appealing.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Old news, but still worth re-iterating

      If you have a Blackberry reckon a thief would have pity on you and give you one of the iPhones they have pinched.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Old news, but still worth re-iterating

      I have read a few stories of people having their iDevices lost/nicked and then located through this service - which is pretty great, but as to how responsive the authorities are with this info is a bit unclear to me - have yet to see any articles that talk of people being caught and prosecuted thanks to this service.

      Heard an item on R5 about one of their reporters who was mugged, had iPhone stolem and police made arrest and retrieved iPhone using one of these services. Have a read of

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18739151

    3. Trevor Marron
      FAIL

      Re: Old news, but still worth re-iterating

      Quote - At the end of the day if you have any smartphone you are at risk of being mugged. - Endquote

      So am I safe if I am home and snug in bed by the end of the day, or should I be careful at the start of the day and in the middle of the day too?

  15. Dazed and Confused Silver badge
    Joke

    Stop and search

    So, been seen using an iPhone in public and the BiB will be feeling your collar.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That's why I keep my phones in a holster - sure I look like a tosser, but at least my phones have never gone astray. I also wear a bow tie and carry a silver topped cane, so perhaps I am just a bit too scary looking for the average thief.

  17. Khaptain Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Status symbol for Chavs

    Judging by the image that El Reg posted in the article, it is certainly not the Upper Crust that are buying iPhones ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Status symbol for Chavs

      Hasn't been in a long time. Mostly it's the 'lower middle' crust who buy them in the hopes of looking upper crust.

  18. Fab De Marco

    Take responsibility for your own security

    There are free apps available for both OS that will locate a stolen phone. Install one and if it gets stolen the Boys in Blue will have a nice easy collar (We hope)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Take responsibility for your own security

      I'd imagine the first thing a thief would do is to remove the SIM card?

      1. Trevor Marron

        Re: Take responsibility for your own security

        And the minute another is put in and the phone switched on, or the phone connected to WiFi the tracking starts again.

  19. CCCP
    WTF?

    "..one in two.."

    What is wrong with "HALF"?? Or even 51% if you want to be specific?

    Lazy and gratuitous use of language. Daily Mail-esque. Not becoming of el Reg.

  20. Longrod_von_Hugendong
    Devil

    Here is a wizard wheeze...

    Get a broken phone, remove innards - replace with a remote detonated bomb, wait for it to be stolen - then no iPhone was stolen and the mugger / braggart wont do it again... cheaper and better than sending them to prison!!

  21. DrXym Silver badge

    Exercise some common sense

    Don't play with your phone while walking alone the road, don't get in the habit of leave your phone on the table in cafes, bars, clubs etc., don't leave your phone in your handbag or coat without securing the handbag / coat, don't leave your phone in the car, or within grabbing distance when stopped at lights, don't signpost your phone by having earphone wires emanating from some vulnerable pocket. And so on.

    Most crime is opportunistic. Minimize the opportunity and you minimize the possibility of getting your phone stolen.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Reassuringly expensive iPhones" are not so expensive at all, in fact you can get them free!

    By because "people" place value on status, the fools will never learn.

    What's the point anyway, surely the theives realise that the phone can be tracked?

  23. The Alpha Klutz
    Megaphone

    in 10 years iphones will look as dated as the TV show Big Brother does now. only the most unrepentant KFC munching chavs will still have one. and KFC will put unknown particles in your food from the GM and petrochemical industries. just like Apple would do if Steve Satan was still alive and running the show like the rampant cock munching tyrant he is.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "in 10 years iphones will look as dated as the TV show Big Brother does now"

      They look dated NOW. Have you seen the state of iOS?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        apple want to put the mark of the beast on you so they can eventually sell your organs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! CHEAP!

    2. Lallabalalla
      Happy

      in 10 years iphones will look ... dated

      REALLY? In 10 years EVERYTHING you now have will look dated - that is how things like "10 years" and other dates work.

      You *really* think that the iPhone15 will look just like the iPhone1 - because the 5 is *so* similar to the iphone1 ... oh, wait.

      On the upside, I expect my 3GS will *still* be working perfectly, look like new and be worth a good chunk of what I paid for it.

      1. The Alpha Klutz

        Re: in 10 years iphones will look ... dated

        it wont be worth any money when you're a feudal serf under the new world order.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    London Met say 1/2 of stolen phones are "i". What can you say, it's London! Full of the pretentious wannabes, walking about with an iPhone and no LIFE!

    In fact, I'd speculate that the figure should be higher considering how the fannybois think its the best thing EVER.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    The victims are obviously holding them wrong...

    Yeah... leaving already!

  26. David Cantrell

    If you want to know what's likely to happen, ask a bookie. If you want to know how risky something is, ask an underwriter. And if you want to know whether something is worth anything or not, ask a thief.

  27. MrZoolook
    FAIL

    What has the world come to?

    I mean,if I had an iPhone stolen from me, rest assured the real crime would be that I lowered myself to actually owning it in the first place!

  28. Lallabalalla
    Stop

    The reason iPhones get nicked

    Simple - it's the market that dictates. They are worth more secondhand than anything else. They cost more to begin with and they have far higher residual value especially when unmarked - as they tend to be because they are high quality kit that is generally well looked after.

  29. Stretch

    classic mistake

    Its nothing to do with the phones at all. Or the crims desires. These are opportunistic crimes.

    Its easy:

    Stupid People buy crapple.

    Stupid People stand around on the street with their phones out

    Stupid People get mugged.

  30. messele
    Coat

    Huh.

    Another Anna Leach (love the pseudonym by the way, Leach is a pseudonym right?) article of made up statistic, massive leaps in logic that is choc full of click-bait hater material that those tech haters just cant get enough of.

    Meanwhile in the real world the truth is out there but you wont find it on snide, hate mongering shitfest "The Register".

    Cynical sideways looking? No, you're just a bunch of leaches (do you see what I did...)

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