How to prevent bike theft

There are more bikes than people. Unfortunately, lots of bikes are stolen every day. Let’s give you some ways to protect your beloved bike.

In the Netherlands, there are more bikes than people (23,4 million – wow). Unfortunately, lots of bikes are stolen every day. Let’s give you some ways to protect your beloved bike!

Getting back to your bike and seeing it’s stolen is – to say at the least – upsetting. Although it’s a challenge to keep your bike out of the hands of thieves, you can do your best to prevent it.

Describe your bike

Let’s start with the basics: register your bike. Maybe this sounds a bit logical, but it’s important to know what your bike looks like. In case of theft, the police will need all the unique characteristics of your bike if they ever want to find it again. Start with taking a picture of it. Other things to note down:
   •  Brand
   •  Color
   •  Frame number (find it at the bottom of the (saddle) frame or on the tube of the steering wheel)
   •  Kind of bike
   •  Size of wheels (find it written on the wheels itself).

Store it in a safe place

Put your bike in a safe space. Don't leave it in an unlit spot in the evening or at night. Parking your bike in front of a train station is safer than parking it in a dark corner in the middle of nowhere.

Preferably, park your bike in a bike storage. Always close the door securely behind you. Don't let just anyone in, not even someone claiming to be a fellow neighbor.

Lock it

It’s an art to lock your bike in a proper way. Use a proper lock to double-lock your bike. Relatively inexpensive locks are easily cut. Go for a chain lock, made of steel. Choose a bracket lock or chain lock.

Secure your bike with the frame to a fixed object that thieves cannot move. For example, one of the many bike standards. If you secure your bike with the wheel, thieves can walk away with the bike without the wheel. Always use your frame.

Stolen bike

What to do when – despite all your efforts – your bike is stolen? First, check if it’s at the bike depot (Fietsdepot in Dutch). Maybe you parked it wrongly and the bike was taken there. You can check this at Verloren of Gevonden.

If it’s stolen, you can report this digitally to the police. You can do this via the website of the police in your municipality. Be aware that you need the frame number of your bike in order to report the theft at the police.

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