Belgravia residents who are tired of crime riddling their quiet community are hoping to be right on the dot with a new crime-fighting technology.
Through a new property-identification program in that community, residents can protect their valuables by marking them with tiny dots that are no larger than the period at the end of this sentence.
Each dot, called a MicroDotDNA, contains an embedded code that can be tracked to the owner of the property through a unique database.
Richard Law, who heads up a crime-watch program in Belgravia, said 30 homeowners are usually victims of crime each month – everything from car break-ins to thefts.
And the neighbourhood problem is escalating, he said.
“How do you track all of these small things that are stolen?” said Law. “The thieves here are always pawning the items in the north side, and, until now, I wasn’t tracking things like my tools.”
Law asked MicroDotDNA Technology Canada, a Leduc-based company, for help after hearing about similar a program that helped curb thefts in Alberta’s oil patch.
Company president Pat Cowman said similar programs that have been offered to the industry have also deterred thefts by 80 per cent, and industrial companies like EPCOR and PCL have noticed positive results.
This is the first time the company has been involved in a community-based anti-theft program and Cowman hopes it could act as a theft deterrent.
“If you want to come into this neighbourhood, you are going to be taking your chances,” said Cowman.
All property is traceable by police 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and a database can also provide records of serial numbers and descriptions of the property, said Cowman.
Anyone interested in participating in the program can obtain a kit through the company’s website at operationhandsoff.com.