It is important that all students, but particularly ‘Freshers’ who are new to university life, take sensible precautions to reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of crime.

Student Advice

There are some simple steps you can take to avoid becoming a victim of crime:
  • Over 40% of burglaries occur because a door or window has been left open, so lock up properly each time the house is left empty and if there is an alarm, set it.
  • Keep bank cards and cheque books separate – keep a note of card details to ensure they can be cancelled quickly.
  • Always lock cars, never leave the keys in the ignition or valuables unattended in the vehicle whether parked on or off campus.
  • Mark property with the initials of the university or home and student ID number – this makes it hard for a burglar to sell stolen goods and can help the police to return any recovered items.
  • Be vigilant when using mobile phones – if a phone is stolen, contact the police and remember to inform the network provider.  Use sites/apps such as and ‘Find My Phone’.  Always record the phone’s IMEI number by typing *#06#.
    Take out insurance for laptops, mobile phones, etc​
  • Don’t be an easy target – walk in groups at night, stay over with friends or travel by taxi.  Remember that personal safety is worth more than the cab fare home!
  • Don’t leave drinks unattended.
  • If possible, use cash machines during the day – be aware of the surroundings – never write down the PIN.
  • Use timer switches to switch lights on and make the flat/home look occupied in the events and at the weekends.
  • Personal safety is the most important consideration.  Remember – lock up before leaving, take valuable items home at weekends and during the holidays, and make sure the property is secure at all times.
  • Developing positive relationships with neighbours can play a vital role in ensuring any suspicious activity is reported.  For example, while away for the weekend or on holiday.
  • Store next of kin contact details under ICE (in case of emergency) or just under emergency contact in a mobile phone.  This way, the emergency services know who to contact via the mobile’s address book if they need to.
  • Don’t keep coursework only on a laptop/pc.  Keep copies on a memory stick too.
  • If moving into private rented accommodation, check that the property has good quality window and door locks and is fitted with smoke alarms.
  • ​ If you are moving into Halls of Residence it is advisable not to leave your room door open or unlocked with valuables on display.
  • Do not keep large amounts of cash in your room and keep your bank cards out of view.
  • If you live in a property with a communal entrance make sure you limit the number of people who know the access code, that doors close and lock behind you and that strangers do not ‘tailgate’ behind you into the building.
  • If you are taking a car with you, always park in a well-lit secure place, remove all your valuables, satnav and do not leave property on display.
  • ​ If you are moving to a new town, familiarise yourself with it during daylight, find telephone numbers of reputable taxi companies and when out socialising do not get separated from friends and always keep enough money to get a taxi home.  Do not take risks and shortcuts to get home.