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Beware of strava

02GF7402GF74 Posts: 1,294
edited September 2018 in MTB general
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Thieves steal cycling enthusiast's entire collection of specialist racing bikes 'after tracking down the 51-year-old's home using routes he'd posted on fitness app Strava'

Adam Jones, 51, from Barling Essex, had five bikes worth £12,500 stolen
Mr Jones thinks criminals targeted him because of his quick routes on app Strava
He has warned cyclists to be vigilant and change their app settings to 'private'
A cycling enthusiast had his entire collection of racing bikes stolen after thieves tracked down his home using routes he had posted on fitness app Strava.

Adam Jones, from Barling, Essex, was shocked when his garage was broken into and five top-of-the-range bikes worth more than £12,500 were nabbed.

The 51-year-old is certain that the criminals specifically targeted him after he publicly posted results of rides on Strava - an app widely used in the cycling and running communities for people to compare their times.

Adam Jones, from Barling, Essex, had £12,500 worth of bike equipment stolen from his garage after posting on fitness app Strava
The PR consultant believes that he was targeted because his route times were relatively fast and the thieves came to the conclusion that he was using expensive bikes.

He is now warning other cyclists to stay vigilant and ensure they have their Strava settings on 'private' - or at least make sure they do no record their routes until they are further away from home.

He said: 'After the break-in I was thinking it had to have been somebody who knows

The PR consultant believes that he was targeted because his route times were fast
'But then after speaking to one of the cycling shops here the chap said "are you quick and are you on Strava?"

'I had no idea that what criminals are doing is working out where people are cycling and on what routes, then using that to track where they live.

'They are making the correlation between people posting quick times and probably having the better, equipment.

'I was so shocked when I realised what had happened, it must have been like a treasure chest to whoever broke in.'

The lifelong cycling enthusiast believes criminals are even using social media to spot when people post pictures of expensive new bikes.

The 51-year-old also admitted to posing with his brand new and expensive bikes and posting them on social media
'We are inadvertently using social media as a shop window for the thieves.

'I put a gormless picture of me on Facebook with my new BMC bike - it's like an advert saying "come and steal me".

'People are riding round on bikes worth six, eight, even ten thousand pounds so it's big money for the criminals.

'I just hadn't made the connection of what was happening and of course since the bikes were stolen all my friends were saying "did you have your privacy settings 'on', on Strava?"

Adam said his wife Tracy, 47, had been left fearful after the break-in at their home.

'The people who broke in selected the bikes they wanted so knew exactly what they were doing.

He has warned cyclists to be careful because 'social media is a shop window for the thieves'
'They left Tracy's bike behind and have taken the ones with the value.'

Police told Adam they have seen a growth in the number of bike thefts in recent years.

He believes the number of so-called 'Mamils' - middle aged men in lycra - is helping to drive the criminality because of the vast amounts people are happy to shell out on the specialist bikes.

The thieves stole Adam's Specialized Tarmac bike, valued at £1,500, his Inifinito CV, worth about £4,000, a Dolan Scala time trial bike, worth about £2,000, a Bianchi Oltre XR2 worth £2,5000 and a BMC Roadmachine, valued at about £2,700.

He hopes other cyclists will not make the same mistake.

'There are a lot of new riders out there with a lot of gear - I just want my story to help others from having their treasured items being pinched.

'My advice would be to check your privacy settings on Strava, beef up the security of your prized possessions and make sure that your insurance is fully up to date.

Police told Adam they have seen a growth in the number of bike thefts in recent years
'My time trial bike isn't something you can ride to the shops on, to get a packet of crisps and a Pot Noodle.

'So it seems that whoever took the bikes knows that they can sell them on to a specific market.'

Essex Police are investigating the overnight theft which Adam and Tracy discovered on Wednesday morning.

They said: 'We are investigating following a burglary in Barling Magna where five bicycles worth a total of a five-figure sum were taken.

'It took place between 11.59pm on September 18 and 6am on September 19.

'Our enquiries are ongoing.'

Posts

  • This has been happening for some time.
  • SJH76SJH76 Posts: 191
    You know you can set an exclusion zone around your house so they can't pinpoint your address?

    Cars with roof racks parked on driveways are a bigger marker for bike thieves.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Surely we all use the exclusion zones ?

    And now he's given all this information out I'm sure thieves will be giving him a few months to replace and go and check out the garage.

    And yeah. I'm sure thieves were only interesting because he's oh so fast....
  • 02GF7402GF74 Posts: 1,294
    cougie wrote:

    And yeah. I'm sure thieves were only interesting because he's oh so fast....

    In that case I needn't worry. :? Not that I have anything worth pinching.
  • I have a privacy zone set up and deliberately don't own anything too shiny or expensive looking (and have 26" wheels).

    Unfortunately, anything expensive looking is more likely to attract the magpies.
    "Ride, crash, replace"
  • He thinks he does not know. If you have bikes neighbours will know and it takes one who is a bit dodgy to have them nicked.
    http://www.thecycleclinic.co.uk -wheel building and other stuff.
  • 1) set Strava to private
    2) set exclusion zones
    3) don't accept follow requests from anyone you don't know
    4) don't get robbed.
  • "The PR consultant believes that he was targeted because his route times were relatively fast and the thieves came to the conclusion that he was using expensive bikes".

    :lol::lol::lol::lol:
    __________________
    "I keep getting eureaka moments ... followed very quickly by embarrassment when someone points out I'm a plank"

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  • Privacy zones.
  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 8,372
    As above, but another worrying trend is people following decent bike owners from trail centres and sportives to there homes then targeting afterwards.
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • oxoman wrote:
    As above, but another worrying trend is people following decent bike owners from trail centres and sportives to there homes then targeting afterwards.

    There was a report on MBR of a rider being ambushed on the road back and their bike being stolen from the car!
  • sniper68sniper68 Posts: 2,899
    Exclusion zone and no bike rack left on the car.
  • SJH76SJH76 Posts: 191
    oxoman wrote:
    As above, but another worrying trend is people following decent bike owners from trail centres and sportives to there homes then targeting afterwards.

    There was a report on MBR of a rider being ambushed on the road back and their bike being stolen from the car!

    That's why I would only use a lockable rack like the Thule 591/598 no way they are getting the bike off without damaging it.
  • SJH76 wrote:
    oxoman wrote:
    As above, but another worrying trend is people following decent bike owners from trail centres and sportives to there homes then targeting afterwards.

    There was a report on MBR of a rider being ambushed on the road back and their bike being stolen from the car!

    That's why I would only use a lockable rack like the Thule 591/598 no way they are getting the bike off without damaging it.
    Have you seen how quick a bike can be stolen from a Thule 591 without damage :shock:
    __________________
    "I keep getting eureaka moments ... followed very quickly by embarrassment when someone points out I'm a plank"

    Scott Genius MC 30 RIP
    Nukeproof Mega AM 275 Comp
    Cube LTD Rigid Commuter
    Ribble 7005 Sportive
  • SJH76SJH76 Posts: 191
    Myster101 wrote:
    SJH76 wrote:
    oxoman wrote:
    As above, but another worrying trend is people following decent bike owners from trail centres and sportives to there homes then targeting afterwards.

    There was a report on MBR of a rider being ambushed on the road back and their bike being stolen from the car!

    That's why I would only use a lockable rack like the Thule 591/598 no way they are getting the bike off without damaging it.
    Have you seen how quick a bike can be stolen from a Thule 591 without damage :shock:

    I have the 598 so not really, but anything lockable is better than nothing. I'd never leave my bike unattended on the car either way but it will stop most if not all opportunist thieves for 5 minutes. Still, the fact so many people leave these racks on the roof while not using it is a big indicator that the owner has a bike. So they are more likely to be scouted out by an organised gang of bike thieves. They may be scum but that doesn't mean they're stupid.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    oxoman wrote:
    As above, but another worrying trend is people following decent bike owners from trail centres and sportives to there homes then targeting afterwards.

    How dopey would you have to be to drive home all the way and not notice someone's following you ? You'd deserve to be robbed.
  • cougie wrote:
    You'd deserve to be robbed.

    Jesus wept
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Jesus didn't drive 30 miles home with thousands of pounds or bike on the top of the car and not notice that he was being followed by Judas...
  • Can we quickly make a list of personality failures which lines you up for ‘deserving to be robbed’?

    Surely if you have an expensive bike then you should be continuously looking in the rear view mirror because you’ve got it coming.
  • 02GF7402GF74 Posts: 1,294
    I have volvo estate so don't use a roof rack since the bike fits in rear without having to take off any wheels.
    . I do use a cable wrapped through the frame and rear wheel that is padlocked to a luggage loop.

    For the casual opportunistic it is a deterrent but for scum equipped with bolt cutters, hacksaw and battery powered disc grinder its a gonna.
  • awaveyawavey Posts: 2,368
    sniper68 wrote:
    Exclusion zone and no bike rack left on the car.

    however if people are going to be all tinfoil hat about it, unless they only leave their exclusion zone on the exact same route everytime, then it soon becomes just a matter of triangulation with the middle of the exclusion zone being your starting point.

    and even then if they move their starting point down the road, by the time someone has spent enough time working out roughly where you are and have something worth their while trying to steal, theyll just follow you the last kms anyway looking for clues etc etc.

    I mean I trust my main postman as Ive known him for years, not so sure I trust his other delivery colleagues as much, but theyd have to be blind not to notice how much bike related stuff ends up coming my way, and Ive had both post (from the relief postie) and couriers leave packages stuffed into a locked shed.

    now the reason they can do that is because the door is a bit loose and you can pull it open far enough to chuck a package in, which is also the reason bikes are never left in there because its not really secure, but pretty odd place to leave a package isnt it ? given they can leave it just by the back door, or in the front porch, by the bins, or even take away for redelivery as they are supposed to, so how do I know they werent just checking out if Id left a bike in there, instead of being helpful ?
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    I really doubt anyone's getting followed home anyway. It's got to be an old wives tale. How would you know that you weren't heading off on a 200 mile journey ?
  • SJH76SJH76 Posts: 191
    cougie wrote:
    I really doubt anyone's getting followed home anyway. It's got to be an old wives tale. How would you know that you weren't heading off on a 200 mile journey ?

    Most times it's still opportunists. It very rare that people are trawling through thousands of Strava feeds looking for a bike to steal. It's not worth their effort. It is more likely the victim has been lax with security. A roaming gang might spot a guy getting ready to go riding and then try his house at night. Maybe they get lucky, maybe they don't. The thought that a hardcore of bike thieves are sat looking through people rides and trying to triangulate a possible location of a riders start point as though they were searching for the final resting place of the Titanic is a bit far fetched.
  • larkimlarkim Posts: 2,304
    Man "believes" something without evidence therefore it may be true. Interesting form of scaremongering.

    Much, much more likely that someone saw him out riding it back to his house, or just broke in opportunistically and found a decent haul.

    Has any little scrote been actually caught and fessed up to criminal Strava stalking? That's not to say it's not possible, but if anyone thinks their most public use of a bike is on Strava compared to, say,v actually riding it on an actual road they need their head examined.
    2015 Canyon Nerve AL 6.0 (son #1's)
    2011 Specialized Hardrock Sport Disc (son #3s)
    2013 Decathlon Triban 3 (red) (mine)
    2019 Hoy Bonaly 26" Disc (son #2s)
    2018 Voodoo Bizango (mine)
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  • Can we quickly make a list of personality failures which lines you up for ‘deserving to be robbed’?

    ..........

    Anyone with a nice bike, obviously. They have too much money, and want everyone to know about it by buying a nice bike to go with their nice car and their nice house. So all strivers are big show offs, obviously, and are insensitive bastards as well. The fact that they neither smoke, drink, gamble, or waste money on loose women is another point in their disfavour. I mean just who do they think they are! They deserve to be robbed, asking for it they are! They should be the first against the wall when the revolution comes (which won't be too long if JC gets voted in). :shock:
  • PS: I'd rather drive a steamroller over my bike than let some toe-rag steal it and get the benefit of my hard-earned!
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