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Recipients of valuable Christmas presents are being urged to post code and protect their gifts to ward off burglars.

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Havering Council have warned items such as iPads and smartphones are attractive to burglars, so using an ultra-violet (UV) pen to mark them with your postcode and house number makes it more likely that any stolen item will be returned.

Cabinet member for community safety, Cllr Geoff Starns, said: “The chance of being burgled in Havering is low but when it does happen it can be very upsetting.

“Postcoding valuable presents helps the police return them to their rightful owners if they get stolen and then recovered.”

The council said the best way to mark mobile phones is to remove the battery, put the postcode on the case below and record the IMEI number to stop it being used even if the SIM card is changed.

The IMEI number of any mobile phone or iPad can be found using *#06# on your key pad.

Other items, such as bikes, should be postcoded using a UV pen, and serial numbers recorded.

A limited number of UV pens are available, free of charge, on a first come, first served basis from Kevin Jolly at Havering Council on 01708 432880.

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