Keeping gifts safe from theft

Keep track of your new gifts by logging serial numbers at

So you've just unwrapped the latest and greatest smart phone? Or maybe you were really nice this year and Santa brought you that new flat screen TV, laptop, tablet or game console that was at the top of your wish list?

Before you get stuck in police say there's one thing you should probably take care of first, and that's recording the serial number.

Mount Maunganui community constable Kurt Waugh says with the risk of theft being much higher during the festive period, people need to take precautionary measures.

“We are always finding stolen property whose owners have not recorded serial numbers. So with your new presents this Christmas, make sure you note them down and take pictures.

“This can be done with electronic devices, bikes and jewellery; basically anything that has a serial number, document it.”

He says people should do this as soon as they receive their new items.

“When police do search warrants or locate stolen property on offenders, if there is no serial number, often those offenders get to keep that stuff. If you don't write it down the bad guy keeps the items.”

A free website is also available to log your serial numbers:

Kurt says those planning to go away for the festive season should also be vigilant.

“Have someone keep an eye on your property and ensure you secure your house, even if you're only leaving it for a short period of time.

“If you're going to the beach don't leave valuables in your car or in a visible place, as these things are all encouraging to opportunist thieves.”

He says people should also consider joining their local neighbourhood support group.

“Police do a fortnightly newsletter on crime prevention advice and good police work stories in each local neighbourhood.”

Those wishing to be connected with their local neighbourhood support group can contact


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