We live in a world where social tech is a part of our everyday lives, whether it’s to post that stunning trail you pinned at the weekend, finding out news and trends on Twitter, or for most of us, to connect with fellow cycling buddies on the likes of Strava & Map My Ride.

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The best known cycling apps allow us to build a network of cycling friends who we can share rides with, recommend routes to, and to compete for those all important KOM’s. We’re not knocking the tech and social platforms we couldn’t live without, but we want to help you smarten up your online presence, to make sure your beloved wheels don’t get nicked by the opportunist, pesky bike thief.

1. Resist temptation to post desirable bikes you own online

Lucky enough to own an expensive or super rare bike? Don’t flaunt it on social media, as it’s surprising how fast word can spread, appealing to that bike thief who lives in the area.

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2. Set all social media platforms to private

If your settings are ‘public’, then posts which you upload will be viewable to anyone, which may just be an attractive picture of you beloved new and expensive ride. It also wouldn’t hurt to check through your online ‘friends’ who you’re connected with, to make sure only people who you know and trust are on your friends list.

3. Leave holiday posts until you've returned

Yes, we all love getting away from the hustle and bustle of working life by venturing off on holiday. Whilst there’s no harm in letting your social network know of your adventures, do this once you’ve returned.

Raving about your holiday before you’ve even gone away can entice a bike thief that your home is going to be empty, in other words, no one will be home to guard your wheels.

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4. Tighten your privacy restrictions on cycling apps

Like social platforms Facebook & Twitter, you can also tighten up the security settings on cycling apps. If your security is set to public, there is an abundance of personal information made available to people; how often you ride, what bikes you own, and the exact start and finish point of your ride, usually your home.

Strava has answered this problem by allowing you to further customize your privacy settings to create ‘privacy zones’. This means you can hide locations like your home address, office, or any other location which you don’t want your network to pin-point.

To do this, go to https://www.strava.com/settings/privacy

5. Get your bike securely marked

Not all frame numbers are unique, or least of all viewable to the naked eye, especially if you own a carbon beauty. Security marking your bike is like giving your bike it’s own unique registration number. Also, bike marking acts as a deterrent to thieves, as they know the bike they’re looking to pinch is trackable.

With Bikmo Plus, customers can claim a free bike marking kit (RRP £30) which has unique forensics to help police return your bike in use in the case it’s found.

This also means that you’re bike is registered within a security database that all UK Police forces have access to. Should your bike get nicked, and the police get hold of it, they’ll then be able to link the bike back to you.

6. Use high quality locks

It goes without saying, the better the lock, the harder it will be for a bike thief to walk away with your pride and joy.

Sold Secure rated locks will give you an indication on how robust your lock is, as they rate every lock on the market, based on a Gold, Silver or Bronze rating. Gold being the very best, and bronze the more basic of locks. Your local bike shop can advise you on the best lock to buy, so do come home with the best you can afford.

7. Remove bike racks when at home

Having a bike rack mounted to your car when it’s stationary at home, is like having a tannoy advertising to passing folk that:

  1. You own a bike
  2. It’s likely you own more than one, perfect news for an opportunist bike thief.

8. Smile, you're on camera

It might seem like the more extreme precaution, but if a bike thief can see there’s likely to be CCTV footage of them doing the deed, chances are it’ll be a real turn-off to pinching your bike(s).

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Theft comes as standard with Bikmo cycle insurance. Get a quote today.

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