Bait bike pilot schemes, where decoy bicycles – fitted with hidden GPS systems – are left poorly locked in bike crime hotspots, have reduced cycle crime, as reported in the Guardian bike blog.
British Transport Police used bike bait at Cambridge train station and saw bike thefts fall 45 per cent. A similar scheme in London saw bike thefts drop by a third in one local area.
A bike bait sting also took place earlier this year in Guildford.
Police forces country-wide are set to implement similar schemes following the local successes of decoy bikes.
Critics have rounded on the technique however, blasting bait bikes as entrapment.
The blog quotes Linda Oliver, from Bristol's early intervention service, on the topic: “In many countries, this practice would be classified as entrapment and would be illegal. The courts would view this as luring people into crime.”