As the harvest gets in full swing in our rural areas, officers are reminding people to keep their properties and equipment safe and secure.
Rural Task Force officer Josh Fawcett said: “At this time of year our farmers and rural communities are so busy bringing in the harvest and tending their crops that they can often forget to make sure their properties and equipment are properly secure.
“Their machinery is a massive investment and so we want to remind people to keep it safe and out of the way of opportunist or targeting thieves.
“One of the key items targeted by thieves across the country are Tractor GPS and Navigation equipment.
“Here are some tips to prevent GPS items being stolen.
MARK IT, REMOVE IT, LOCK IT
- Tractor GPS Screens should be removed when not in use, and ensure they are left in a safe and secure location.
- Mark screens using Forensic Marking and use the provided stickers to advertise forensic marking is in use and record serial numbers
- Tractor GPS Receivers should be disconnected, remove and secure in a safe location when not in use
- Remove from roof if not in use and tractor is being used on road – this will prevent advertising the fact you have a receiver.
- Ensure the software is up to date, and marked with security warning stickers
- Consider securing the tractor in a locked alarmed shed and record serial numbers
“Please also make sure your device is properly insured as it may need to be a separate item on your insurance, especially once removed from machinery," added Officer Fawcett.
“We would also advise people to consider installing CCTV, intruder alarms, security lighting and boundary security (entrance gates/fencing) around your property to provide formal surveillance and target harden the most vulnerable areas.
“We cannot physically be everywhere at the same time and our communities are our eyes and ears in the countryside. They know when something they see isn’t right. We want them to call us about any suspicious activity they see. Please report this to police immediately on 999 if there is a crime in progress or 101 for non-emergency incidents.
“For more information about how to protect your farm, properties and equipment please head over to our website where you will find lots of useful information."