Vertical Markets

BikeRegister database million milestone

by Mark Rowe

BikeRegister, the cycle database, has reached its millionth registration on the BikeRegister database. Owned by Selectamark Security Systems plc, a UK security marking product company, BikeRegister is used by UK police forces to search for stolen and recovered bikes – a service offered to the police at zero cost.

Registering on BikeRegister is free and takes a few minutes. It means that a bike can be recovered in the event of it being stolen. BikeRegister offers three security marking kits, for purchase online. As not all frame numbers are unique, choosing one of the kits will provide a bike with its own unique reference number. Over 1,000 searches are made on BikeRegister each day by the police, retailers and the public. BikeRegister has helped return thousands of stolen bikes to their owners, and in September 2020, 66 stolen bikes were returned to their owners that month alone.

BikeRegister was pioneered by Jim Brown, Selectamark Chairman, and is now run by his two sons James Brown, Managing Director, and Jason Brown, Commercial Director. Launched in the late 1990s, BikeRegister’s growth has only really happened in the last eight years. In 2012, BikeRegister successfully bid to become London’s official cycle database, endorsed by the Metropolitan Police and Transport for London (TfL).

Recently, with the development of internet auction sites and online sale sites, BikeRegister has become a resource allowing purchasers to check the details of bikes they are considering purchasing to see if there is a record of it having been stolen. This is done through its BikeChecker feature on the website.

BikeRegister has produced data on bike crime during lockdown. It showed a significant rise in bike theft reported to them – up 69.4pc in October 2020 against the same month in 2019.

UK police’s Lead for Cycle Crime, Supt Mark Cleland said: “This week we reached an historic milestone with the one millionth bicycle registered on BikeRegister. Registration means that even if a bicycle is stolen there’s an opportunity for it to be recovered and returned to the owner.

“There’s also a good chance that bikes registered with BikeRegister are less likely to be stolen because thieves look for the easiest opportunity. If you’ve yet to register your bicycle, then why not do it right now. Don’t forget to get the best lock you can afford and use it whether at home or away.”

BikeRegister hold an annual Cycle Crime Conference, planned for May. Other plans for 2021 include expanding into Europe after BikeRegister’s launch in Ireland in 2018. The French government have recently made marking and registration of new bikes compulsory in France.

Pre-lockdown, UK police ran cycle marking events; during the pandemic, police have found new ways to offer bike marking sessions. Police Scotland, Avon & Somerset Police and British Transport Police were among those offering socially distanced events with bike owners queuing a safe distance apart, and officers wwre wearing PPE. Cheshire Police offered ‘virtual’ bike marking where a kit was delivered to the bike owner’s home for them to apply.

NHS workers were offered free bike marking during lockdown after some were targeted by thieves.

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