Mobile phone theft is a big problem in London, with almost 250 phones stolen each day, according to the Metropolitan Police data. This is as a result of phones being stolen after every 6 minutes.
The mayor and police chief want phone companies to make it harder to steal phones. Last year, 90,864 phones were stolen in the city.
The mayor of London and police are suggesting that software designers should come up with ways to make stealing phones less tempting.
They also want phone companies to work with them and the police. Last year, 38% of personal robberies involved stolen phones. Almost 70% of all thefts were related to phones.
Experts are skeptical about the mayor and police chief’s idea. They think it could be difficult to prove that someone’s phone is really theirs if the phone needs to be re-registered. They also say that with so many phones in the UK, enforcing these changes could be tricky.
The police data show young people between 14 and 20 years old are most at risk.
Mobile phone companies say they want to work with the police and the mayor’s office to reduce phone theft.
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan while addressing the issue said the spiralling cost of living threatens to exacerbate the drivers of violence and robberies, which we know disproportionately impact young people.
He added it was “simply too easy and profitable for criminals right now to repurpose and sell on stolen phones”.
Addressing the data, the Metropolitan Police chief, Mark Rowley said: “The current practice of allowing stolen mobiles to be re-registered by new users within the phone industry inadvertently enables a criminal market which drives robbery, thefts and violent offending in London.
“We’ve been really clear there are root causes of violence we cannot tackle alone.
“We need partners to step up to the plate and work alongside us to break this cycle of violence.”