SOUTH east London residents are being advised to keep their valuable Christmas presents under wraps to help combat burglary.

Packaging or cardboard boxes left outside a home to be collected can be an advert to potential thieves of what may lie inside.

The most common stolen items between Christmas Eve and Boxing Day 2012 were electrical with computers, mobile phones, TV and audio equipment and games consoles all targeted.

The Met’s Operation Bumblebee helps to detect where burglars may strike through the use of predictive policing, using computer algorithms to produce crime maps which direct officers to potential hotspots.

Superintendent Chris Hafford, deputy lead for Operation Bumblebee, said: "We are targeting those who take away the joy of giving and receiving gifts. Thieves should not be allowed to spoil someone's New Year.

"Burglary is a distressing crime that can have lasting emotional effects on the victims, who no longer feel safe in their own homes.

"We want people to feel safe in their homes and in their communities and we are working hard to pursue those responsible."

For crime prevention tips and advice on how to make your home secure visit or contact your local Safer Neighbourhoods Team.