New alarms to stop cable theft in Havering

BT launched a new burglar alarm weapon in the fight against cable thieves in Havering.

The technology, called RABIT, detects when a cable has been cut or damaged, accurately pin-pointing an incident to a road or street - and alerting BT’s security control centre and police.

RABIT (Rapid Assessment BT Incident Tracker) was trialled in December 2011, and has already forced cable thieves to flee crime scenes empty handed.

Dave Hughes, BT’s east of England regional director, said: “BT’s new burglar alarm on the network will make thieves think again. We are now able to inform the police of the exact location of malicious network attacks and, if trials are anything to go by, it won’t be long before they start catching the thieves in the act.”

RABIT is one of a number of measures used by BT Security to help battle copper theft, which costs BT and its customers millions of pounds each year.

In November, the Government announced that �5 million would be put aside to help establish a dedicated metal theft taskforce.

Paul Crowther, deputy chief constable of the British Transport Police and metal theft lead, said: “Communities and businesses should see a sharp reduction in the disruption caused by this type of theft. This is an early example of how Government funding has helped the National Police Metal Theft Taskforce assist BT in the battle against cable theft.”

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It is estimated that around 80 per cent of BT’s cable theft is carried out by organised crime gangs.