Author Topic: Bag thefts/Pickpockets  (Read 841 times)

nS321

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Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« on: 09:15:26, 25/10/17 »
Hi all,


I am a design engineering student who is investigating bag thefts, and pick pocketing whilst traveling - be it walking, camping or travelling (in a train station, on a train, in an airport etc...). I would be grateful if you could share experiences and any way that you think it could have been stopped (by using a device or gadget of some sort).
Thank you in advance!
N :)
« Last Edit: 10:55:17, 25/10/17 by nS321 »

ninthace

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #1 on: 09:36:52, 25/10/17 »
Read http://www.walkingforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=34184.0  There are already solutions or this problem - Google is your friend.
Solvitur Ambulando

gunwharfman

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #2 on: 10:38:33, 25/10/17 »
I've thought of simple things to do or try. Sewing two or three credit card sized pockets onto my baselayers, always keeping them 'close to my chest'.

As a hiker, I believe that my phone is the most vulnerable thing I carry. I use Last Pass or similar on it which needs its own password and I have read that I can hide such apps it in a 'void' on my phone as well. I use Last Pass but have not tried the 'void' thingy yet. Phones are a bit of a problem these days for another reason, the manufacturers seem to have stopped offering us the choice to secure the phone to ones wrist or body via a security cord. If your phone is like mine their casings are also so slippery, easy to pinch and easy to fall from a shirt pocket. I found this out last year, my previous model did not bounce and I had to buy a new one! I have a two SIM card model now and I've often wondered if I can keep all my finance and other items on one card only, but not the other and hide this SIM somewhere on my person until I need it? I've no idea but if this would work a SIM card is very small and can be easily hidden.

I also carry an out of date Debit card with me, maybe daft but if I am ever stopped I could at least offer this and then I might have the chance to get away before they notice.

nS321

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #3 on: 11:00:22, 25/10/17 »
Thank you for your replies so far!
Have you  (or anyone you know) experienced a theft, or pickpocket whilst travelling. This would help my research, as it would give me further context for my investigation, and secondly, if you could add something to a rucksack/daypack in order for it to be more secure (prevent it from being taken altogether, or prevent things from being taken) - i.e a way to clip it to yourself/your foot etc. [size=78%] [/size]
[size=78%]Thanks[/size] O0

fernman

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #4 on: 11:26:35, 25/10/17 »
Only yesterday my wife phoned me from Sicily to tell me she'd had her beach bag stolen while she was in the sea. She lost 35, Kindle and her prescription sunglasses. Witnesses saw a pair of probable African asylum-seekers legging it and going over a fence.
Very little in the world would have prevented that, short of having a theft-proof beach bag padlocked to a tree or iron pole.

nS321

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #5 on: 12:27:53, 25/10/17 »
I'm sorry to hear about that, its always difficult to prevent thefts on beaches. One question - what do you mean by a theft proof bag, and what features would it include?
Would you add anything to the bag to prevent this from happening again.
Thank you!

fernman

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #6 on: 13:23:57, 25/10/17 »
This is getting a bit off topic for a walking forum, but here goes.
I wrote "a theft-proof bag" more tongue-in-cheek. Being lockable wouldn't have stopped those guys lifting it and running off with it, nor would any sort of alarm because they'd have been away before anyone realised what was going on.
But this is the real world. Straw and canvas bags or plastic carrier bags are going to remain the preference. No woman is going to pay a lot of money for anything like that just on the offchance someone might steal it, nor would she want to faff about doing a lock up which, as I pointed out above, isn't goint to prevent theft. At the same time she isn't going to want to take a bicycle-type padlock, one reason being there's nothing to lock it to on most beaches (although a lounger would do if you were using one).

nS321

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #7 on: 14:41:40, 25/10/17 »
Thank you for your feedback, it is greatly appreciated. I was considering an alarm system, however your point proves that it wouldn't be as effective as I first thought. Thanks again.  :)

harland

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #8 on: 14:41:55, 25/10/17 »
There are some bags/small lockable safes that are manufactured so that you can attach to your lounger if on holiday.  If the original poster is really looking for something to manufacture then s/he could put in a movement detector with an alarm - could be a problem in high winds or forgetting and moving it or when walking but at my pace I might not even set it off! :D :D

gunwharfman

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #9 on: 14:54:14, 25/10/17 »
I assume opportunism crime is the same all over the world, so easy to do! To study this I think you will have to break the subject matter down a bit. In my experience, crime can happen in all sorts of places, though I must say that to date its never happened to me. Opportunities might present themselves when when I'm sitting in a cafe/pub and my rucksack is leaning against a wall, when I'm hiking in a populated area, when I'm hiking in a rural area, when I'm on a site, in the shower, when I'm sleeping and my rucksack is not in my enclosed space with me. I'm not sure if thinking about a 'theft proof bag' is the route to go down? For me, if I think its valuable it stays on ME, it does not go in my rucksack. I work on the idea that if a rucksack and its contents are stolen, then because I keep my cards and money on me I'll just have to buy replacements. Simplistic I know but, if it happens anyway what can you do?

'Witnesses saw a pair of probable asylum-seekers legging it and going over a fence', that reads like a typical Daily Mail, The Sun and/or Daily Express headline to me. Lots said in the words but perhaps more is said between the words?

I would also suggest that if a 'theft proof bag' is designed to stop them from actually off the body that could mean unnecessary danger for the person wearing it?

fernman

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #10 on: 15:51:25, 25/10/17 »
Going back to the OP re. pickpocketing, and gunwharfman's concerns over his cards and phone, it's an area where zipped inner pockets on trousers such as Kiwis are slightly beneficial. I'd like to think I would feel anyone tugging at them to open them, though I think they wouldn't be a lot of use if you were in a foreign country surrounded by eight or ten street urchins with hands going everywhere. Perhaps that concept could be taken a step further by making them more difficult to undo.

To GWM's more recent  comment on what I wrote of my wife's unfortunate incident, the thieves were two young black males, while running away fast and climbing a fence is what they did.  Native Italians or two of the thousands of refugees with whom Sicily is now awash? You decide.

Sloth

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #11 on: 16:59:06, 25/10/17 »
When I was in Rome quite a few years ago, a gypsy youth of about 15 pushed a large card tray in front of my face asking for money whilst trying to open the leather pouch attached to my belt. He was not expecting the swift clip across the ear he got for his troubles.

gunwharfman

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #12 on: 18:49:39, 25/10/17 »
I also have an inner zipped pocket in my hiking trousers which I have tried, but when I place something in them, their angle against my leg just makes for uncomfortable hiking, so I do not bother now. I also have a hiking shirt with a zipped pocket but for me that doesn't work well either. If I place, for example, my cards there my rucksack shoulder strap has a habit of pressing the cards directly onto my nipple, after a few miles I get very sore.  I think no solution is going to be anywhere near perfect, all I've tried to do is work out something that for me is just 'good enough' to live with.

Sorry about my comment, when I read your first entry it made me smile, which is why I thought of newspaper headlines. Theft and the distress it brings is not good for anyone.

I have always been interested in how people sometimes view things and people around them, what they see, what they think they see and what perhaps they want to see. I have no problem with 'the thieves were two young black males'. As a male from a Gypsy background and upbringing I know that I have a 'certain sensitivity' about how easily we judge people, often badly. My mother for example would go up the wall if we dared to identify someone, just an example, just as a 'white man'. We always had to find a way to describe what we meant by using the 'man' word first, so we had to learn things like 'the man who is white'. People have often scoffed at how I try to speak about people but I beleive that for me, the difference between a 'white man' and a 'man who is white is a very important thing to understand.

Likewise as a hiker I know that some people will look at me and judge that I am nothing more than a vagrant! It happens!

fernman

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #13 on: 10:39:37, 26/10/17 »
Yes it would be good if garment producers put more thought into the design and position of zipped pockets.
My current walking trousers have a small one on the thigh that is ideal for putting my car key in, but the bottom of the zip is more or less on the same level as the bottom of the pocket, so that if I forgot to close it the key could drop out. This actually happened once, though I was sitting down putting my boots on at the time and I saw the key go. Now I am doubly careful to make sure it is zipped up.

If the OP could invent an effective and inexpensive way of making zips hard to open except when required, I would like a share of the subsequent profits for having come up with the idea!

@ Sloth, my wife and I were approached in a narrow alley in Marrakech by a man who was hastily draping a light coat over his forearm and hand. His intentions were so blatantly obvious that we did a quick about turn to get away from him.

wobblyknees

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Re: Bag thefts/Pickpockets
« Reply #14 on: 19:29:23, 26/10/17 »
I've got two of these and wouldn't travel without them.


https://www.paramo-clothing.com/en-gb/explore-range/product/?pk=E8AF19F3-472D-45EE-AADF-EF555BCF5CC6&attributes=5A01410B-7BF6-46CC-8A97-FFEA0A577F6E,80C67943-9D35-463E-8E68-CAEE359F77B9


Scroll through the photos at top to see the secret pockets. The main secret pocket is quite large and quite difficult to detect, even for me. It's even got a second secret pocket inside one of the main pockets. The main pockets are also very voluminous. I tend to use them more in the evenings while relaxing or at the start and end of each foreign trip while sightseeing in a city on way to / from airport rather than while trekking.[/size]