infsoft GmbH has developed a technology which helps the police uncover bike thieves. The system is already in use in Mechelen, Belgium.
The German software company infsoft from Großmehring near Ingolstadt, specialized in location-based services, has designed a bike tracking system for the police in Mechelen, Belgium. As many high-quality bicycles are stolen in the city, the local police sought a solution to recover the bicycles, to convict the perpetrators and to reduce the number of thefts in the long run.
Bike tracking by means of Bluetooth beacons
If you want to secure your bicycle, you can equip it with a Bluetooth beacon, which can be stowed in the saddle tube, where it is invisible for thieves. The police sells the small radio transmitters for about 25 € each. The police have previously stored each beacon with its ID in a database and linked it to the most important characteristics (i.e. colour, type) of the bicycle. The data remain in the database for three months, if the bicycle is not reported as stolen. Only in this case the police will see the movements of the bicycle in a web interface. This procedure maintains the owners’ privacy. As soon as the bike passes one of the 40 infsoft Locator Nodes (Bluetooth signal receivers), which are installed at strategic locations in the city center and at the arterial roads, an alarm is triggered. The database stores all places and times the bike was sighted. These data can be matched with the images of the existing CCTV cameras. Thus, in many cases it is possible to identify the perpetrator. The system also works when the stolen bike is in a transporter.
Extension to other cities planned
Several cities in the BENELUX countries have already expressed interest in the infsoft system. Therefore, it is planned to expand the bike tracking in the coming year.