PEOPLE have been urged to take more care of their mobile phones after 17 were stolen in Huddersfield in two days.
The thieves struck mainly in pubs and clubs, stealing phones from table tops or from inside open handbags.
Pc Dave McSweeney, of Huddersfield police, said: "We have put out repeated warnings about this, so it is disappointing there have been so many thefts.
"Many of these crimes could easily have been prevented if people had taken more care of their phones by keeping them in their pockets or zipped up bags."
In one theft on New Year's Eve, a woman had her phone snatched as she was about to use it.
The 20-year-old victim was in Hammerton Road in Fartown at 10pm when it was taken by two men.
One was Asian, the other white. Both wore black knee-length hooded coats. Her Siemens phone was valued at £150.
Pc McSweeney urged people to record their phone's identification number, or EMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity), which can then be used to render the phone useless if it is stolen.
Once the phone's number is noted down it should be registered with the phone's operator. If the phone is stolen, the victim tells the operator and the phone can be barred, making it useless.
Pc McSweeney added: "It is important that any would-be robbers know that a stolen phone can be made useless within seconds - so what is the point in risking jail for nothing?"
To find out your phone's IMEI number, tap in *#06# and the 15-digit serial number will appear on the screen. Register it with your phone operator and then keep the number safe.