European Crime Prevention Network (EUCPN) launches a European prevention campaign on pickpocketing during mass events. By the use of animation videos the EUCPN and 25 European Member States aim to step up the fight against this crime by warning and informing citizens on  how they can protect themselves.

Prevention Pickpocketing

1. A good start is half the battle

  • Install a tracker application on your smartphone, which would help trace your device if stolen.
  • Always use your phone’s security lock or PIN number.
  • Mark your valuables, it is more likely to retrieve them after police forces have found them.
  • Do not carry large sums of money and make a maximum use of payment cards.
  • Spread your money, payment cards and identity papers across several pockets and/or bags.

2. Give your valuables the love they deserve

  • Do not carry your smartphone or wallet in the back pocket of your pants.
  • Always close your bag by using the zipper of locking system provided.
  • Carry bags in front of you with the flaps against your body.
  • Do not display jewelry of money too much.
  • Keep your luggage close-by and in your field of few.
  • Do not leave valuables unattended on public transport.

3. Think like a pickpocket

  • Pickpockets love to distract you, for example by:
    – asking for directions
    – spilling a drink on you
    – asking for help to pick up items from the floor.
  • Pickpockets deliberately pump into you, for example when:
    – boarding public transport
    – using the escalator
    – waiting in line.
  • Pickpockets take advantege of easy targets, for example:
    – handbags hanging on the back of a chair in a restaurant
    – open bags that displays a smartphone or wallet
    – unattended luggage.

4. Report pickpocketing to the police

  • It always make sense to report pickpocketing to the police.
  • Reporting  pickpocketing can prevent others from falling victim by the same pickpockets.
  • Reports teach police authorities crucial information for the fight against professional pickpocketing gangs.


Videos and more information

 The campaign #ProtectYourPocket includes three short animation videos which will be shown on big screens and distributed on social media.

These can be uploaded on EUCPN’s YouTube channel. The animation videos focus on:

  • The 2018 World Cup
  • Festivals
  • Public transport

Campaign pages: eucpn.org/prevention-campaigns

Pickpocketing - EUCPN Thematic Paper no. 11, 2018. 

Theoretical Paper gives more information about ‘organised property crime’, whereof pickpocketing is just one phenomenon.