- The victim had the device pinched from a branch in Nottingham city centre
- The thief distracted her simply by asking her to sign a piece of paper
This is the moment a McDonald’s customer has their mobile phone stolen in just ten seconds as police release CCTV to highlight distraction techniques being used by thieves.
The victim had the device pinched from a table at the fast food branch in Nottingham city centre by a man who distracted her simply by asking her to sign a piece of paper.
Footage shows the crook first approaching a man and woman and engaging in conversation with them both.
He goes on to ask the unsuspecting victim to look at and sign the piece of A4 paper, using the sheet to cover her mobile phone which was on the table.
Police have released the footage of a woman’s mobile phone being stolen in just ten seconds to highlight the techniques currently being used by thieves (pictured)
A man distracted the victim by asking her to sign a piece of paper
The footage shows the crook covering the phone with the sheet of paper
The man then uses the same hand which is holding the paper to steal her device which was underneath before making his escape.
Nottinghamshire Police said the force had released the footage in a bid to raise awareness of tactics being used by criminals.
The thief struck at the branch on Milton Street before heading towards the Victoria Centre at 12.15pm on October 20.
Police said that to minimise the risk of your phone being stolen, keep it out of sight when in a public area.
They said to make sure your phone is password-protected and when you leave a table, even if just for a short time, always take your phone with you.
They advised that if a stranger ever asks to use your phone, don’t hand it to them.
Instead, offer to make the phone call on their behalf and put it on speakerphone.
If you lose or have your phone stolen, call your network provider and get the phone blocked as soon as possible.
Police also said people should set up a tracking app on their phone so they can see where it is from another device in the event of it being lost or stolen.
The iPhone has Find My Phone, and for android phones there is android device manager.
PC John Searston said: ‘We’d like to identify the man featured in the footage and would ask anyone who recognises him to please get in touch.
‘We would also like to hear from anyone who may have been approached in similar circumstances.
‘Having your phone stolen is an immensely upsetting experience and we are doing everything we can to bring offenders to justice.
‘We don’t want this to happen to anyone else and so are encouraging people to remain vigilant while they’re out and about and to follow some simple but effective tips to mitigate the risks of their phone being stolen.
‘We’d urge people to report any suspicious behaviour to us directly, or venue staff, to ensure we can act upon it.’
MailOnline has approached McDonald’s for comment.