It is always a bad sensation to discover that someone has stolen our photographic or video equipment. The past summer was like the others, with a lot of friends and other people I know that don’t have their equipment anymore, neither the pictures inside of them, that were just shot taken. So here you can find some suggestions, that I wish I had written before, to prevent thefts of your equipment. You are free to follow one of them, a mix of them, or all of them.
- Always set on the camera the Owner’s, Author’s and Copyright information (I don’t know if it is allowed in the videocameras too), better if you use an email, in order to let an honest customer (that could buy the equipment online trought an auction service) to reach you easily if the thief had not deleted them.
- If you are not on a trip with friends but you are planning to visit crowded places like museums, churchs, concerts, etc. using also public transport, try to prefer a shoulder bag instead a backpack or monoshoulder backpack. Infact backpack are easily to be opened without any possibility for you to catch the action. And look for a bag that is difficult to open without your notice, leaving the zippers in front of you.
- Never waste original boxes with which, because of serial numbers, you have the only possibility to demonstrate you are the real owner of the stolen equipment, in case of finding them by the police. Exif serial numbers are not sufficient proofs.
- If you travel outside your country never forget to carry on in your wallet a copy of the proof of purchase of your equipment, to avoid its sequestration by the customs men if they think you are not carry on the equipment for personal use but to import it illegally and you don’t want to pay import fees.
- Inside rooms, never leave your equipment on your chair’s back or on a clothes hanger, even if it is close to you. It is preferable to feel the bag with an arm or a leg, so take it close to you with an arm or a leg wrapped in the shoulder belt, in order to be noticeable if someone tries to take it or to open it. If you are sure you won’t disturb anyone, you can hide inside the bag a motion sensor alarm, that you can find in any bricolage or electronic dealer.
- You can use a GPS GSM/GPRS tracker, now available at around Eur 100.00, to be left in the highest pocket of the bag. It can be remotely activate giving you by email/gprs or sms, the exact position of the bag, the route that it made since the theft, and you can also listen to the rumors and voices around it. You can give all of these information to the Police in order to better find the thieves.
- Remember that most of public places and pubs or restaurant have video surveillance systems, useful to try to identificate the thief.
- Also if you have understand who is the thief, or you have found him with the GPS tracker, don’t act as an hero: call the police. The best camera is not worth your life.