Number plate theft

Stolen index plates may be used to aid secondary crimes such as: theft of fuel from forecourts (bilking); avoidance of congestion charges and parking fines; vehicle cloning; and burglary.

If index plate theft is not reported, victims may receive summonses for unpaid parking and speeding tickets, or may even be questioned by police in connection with more serious crimes.

The following prevention/reduction actions and advice will assist police and partners to reduce the potential risk of crime and prevent members of the public from becoming victims.

Crime prevention advice

  • Park your car in a garage at night or park to prevent access to either front or rear number plate.
  • Park in a safe public car park.
  • If parking on a public road, park in a well-lit spot.
  • Use theft resistant number plates (Secure Plate (opens new window)) which are designed to break apart if they are forcibly removed from a vehicle.
  • Fit security screws. Simple anti-theft devices can be easily fitted with a screwdriver in place of existing screws but cannot be removed using standard tools (use correct security screws appropriate for the pre-existing number plate screw size and application). These are available from high street automotive accessories outlets.
  • If you notice a car with different number plates on the front and the back or number plate missing, please let police know using the non-emergency number 101.