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Theft Prevention

Theft is the most common crime on college campuses. UTPD encourages you to actively prevent crime by taking the following steps.

Mark your property with your state-issued ID/driver’s license number

Be sure to write this number along the spine of the same page in all your text books. This makes your belongings less appealing to thieves, and raises the chances of having your property returned to you if stolen. You can borrow an electric engraver free of charge from UTPD to engrave your property. Call the department at 512-471-4441 to learn more about property engraving.

Never leave your laptop unattended

Even if your laptop is labeled with your state-issued ID and secured with a cable lock, it is still a tempting, easy item to steal. So, always take your laptop with you when you go to the bathroom in the library or leave your table to buy a soda in the student union.

Keep doors and windows locked to your dorm/apartment at all times

You should even keep doors and windows locked while you’re at home. Also, try to create the appearance that someone is home 24/7 by leaving at least one light and a radio/noise-maker on all the time. You can even purchase an electric timer and set it up to turn your stereo, TV, and lights on and off at set times. UTPD can loan you a timer to use when you go on vacation as well.

Don’t leave valuables in your car

Especially don’t leave things where they are visible; drape a towel over your dashboard to hide your car stereo’s brand, and conceal anything else you have to leave in your car inside a compartment, or beneath thick blankets that disguise the item’s shape. Also, consider using a steering-wheel lock and installing a “kill switch,” and remember to always keep car windows and doors rolled up and locked.

Secure and register your bicycle

Always secure your bike with two locks: use an independently locking cable lock and a U-lock (U-locks with a flat key instead of a round key are safest). You should secure the frame and front wheel to a bicycle rack with the U-lock, and thread the cable lock through your rear wheel and other accessories. Also, remember to register your bike with Parking and Transportation Services. Registering your bike is free, and bikes registered with PTS are more likely to be recovered if stolen.

Subscribe to Campus Watch for free

Campus Watch is a free e-mail that provides information on recent campus crimes. You can read Campus Watch to find trends in crime type and location, so you will know if there are any specific things to look out for, such as a rash of bike thefts or gym-locker vandalisms. You can subscribe to Campus Watch for free, or read Campus Watch reports on this Web site.