London students face highest risk of phone theft in the UK, new data reveals

The research estimates that over 5,000 students fell victim to phone robberies last year


New data reveals London to be the site of the highest concentration of mobile phone theft in the UK. 

The recently published research, conducted by phone insurance company Loveit Coverit, reports there were a shocking 117,005 phone thefts reported in London in 2022. It also estimates that approximately 5,211 students were victims of phone theft that year.

Students from the University of London, Imperial College, King’s College and the University of the Arts are among the most likely UK students to fall victim to phone theft.

The research lists the 10 university cities with the highest cases of phone thefts in 2022:

London: 117,005 thefts

Manchester: 3,896

Liverpool: 2,224

Nottingham: 1,083

Birmingham: 3,149

Newcastle: 1,100

Sheffield: 1,416

Derby: 637

Coventry: 660

Leeds: 981

The new data comes as the Metropolitan Police seeks to tackle what it has described as “an increase in robbery in the nighttime economy”, particularly phone thefts.

Police officers told The London Tab about new tactics employed by robbers to distract potential victims, including befriending them, selling balloons and vapes, and asking to exchange social media details.

Sergeant Neil Fraser said: “We have seen an increase in robbery in the nighttime economy, hence the reason we need to be proactive in not only targeting suspects but also making potential victims aware.”

Angelo Weekes, a member of Islington Council, also described how perpetrators are “getting very sophisticated with their tactics.”

A spokesperson from Loveit Coverit also commented: “As students rely more on their smartphones, they’ve become prime targets for thieves.”

Using the slogan “Look up. Look out,” police urge freshers and other young people to keep their wits about them and “be naturally suspicious.”

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