Police are warning Thamesmead car owners to secure their number plates after a spate of thefts.

Last night, Thamesmead Mooring MPS tweeted: "Over night crime reports in Thamesmead and AbbeyWood have seen a spike in front number plates being stolen or tampered with.

"Number plate screws are advised to discourage suspects."

A spokesman from Thamesmead police said that there is a trend towards Nissan and Toyota vehicles but there doesn't seem to be a reason for this. 

If you suspect this is happening in your area, you are advised to call 101.

How can you keep your number plates safe?

Insight Security suggests you buy security screws, which are very easy to screw in but not so easy to unscrew.

The security company says: "The security screw is cleverly designed with a drive face only, so its simple to do up, but if you try to undo it, the screwdriver simply slips off the screw head.

"If your number plates are stuck on rather than screwed on, this may not be a practical solution, however your local vehicle dealer should be able to advise you whether it is feasible to use screw fixing in addition to the existing adhesive fixing."

What else can I do?

Install a CCTV camera outside your house.

Make sure you install movement-sensitive lights.

If that’s not enough for you, you can also buy theft-resistant number plates, which are impossible to remove in less than three minutes. Some versions are even rendered unusable if they aren’t removed properly, in a particular way.