According to the NFU rural crime costs the UK in excess of £42 million every year and tractors account for a big proportion of this figure. And whilst the theft rate has dropped very slightly the value has risen indicating a trend towards targeting higher value items.

And it’s not just the tractor itself which is proving attractive. Police have been warning farmers in East Anglia, Cambridgeshire and Norfolk to be vigilant after several farms have been targeted for valuable GPS systems. Fast becoming an essential piece of equipment for farmers, these units can cost several thousand pounds and the information they store can be essential to a farm business. The tell-tale dome, often sited in plain view on top of the cab, is an advert for the thieves who can remove the system in minutes and sell it on to a ready global market with little risk to themselves.

Dave Luscombe of security experts Datatag, who supply the technology for the CESAR Scheme which has been credited with reducing machine theft significantly over the past few years said “Its important that farmers take all precautions possible to avoid theft, simply removing the system at the end of each day is a start. However providing an indelible security mark through our Power Tool Security System would help too – not only does it deter theft in the first instance but it also provides an invaluable aid for Police in identifying and returning assets.’”

He went on to say “in the same way that the main CESAR Scheme has reduced thefts of tractors and large machinery, marking other assets like ATVs, trailers, 4x4s and power tools – which all top the NFU most wanted lists – with our technologies would help make an individual farm a far less attractive prospect for thieves.”