Operation Identification

Most burglars sell what they steal, making it difficult for police to trace stolen goods. Once it has left your home, your television or bicycle looks just like thousands of others. Unless you can prove it is yours, police cannot easily recover or return it. By practicing the following tips, you can make it easier for law enforcement officers to trace your stolen property and you will be able to easily provide important information to insurance companies.


  • Borrow an electric engraving pen from your local law enforcement agency, or buy an inexpensive diamond-tipped marking pen from hardware or department stores.
  • Engrave your name and item serial number somewhere on the property and keep a record at home for easy reporting to police in case of theft.
  • Photograph items that cannot be engraved, such as china, silver, or jewelry.
  • Make a complete inventory of household goods including serial numbers of television sets, stereos, appliances, etc.
  • Put inventory documents and photos in a safe-deposit box, along with other valuables.