A new campaign to stop city shoplifters will target shopping centres and high streets across MK.
New artwork designed by Crimestoppers is hoped will engage the public - and make shops “less attractive” to shoplifers.
The poster asks shoppers to provide information on criminals when they see theft occurring or if they know someone is handling stolen goods.
Shoplifting in England and Wales reached a 12-year high in 2015, according to The Office of National Statistics.
Jayne Taylor, Problem Solving Advisor for Thames Valley Police, said: “Shops are often targeted by sophisticated, organised gangs of shoplifters who steal to order targeting high value items such as designer items and electronics goods and the consequences can be devastating for local businesses.
“We hope that this campaign sends a message to shoplifters that says, don’t bother targeting our shopping areas because we are watching you.”
Shop theft is not a ‘victimless crime’, say police. It can involve threatening behaviour and/or violence against staff and result in severe losses to retailers.
Julia Hughes, Regional Manager for Crimestoppers in Thames Valley, said: “Shoplifting may be on the rise but we can all help reduce the opportunities for theft by speaking up when we see it happening or when we suspect stolen goods are being sold on.”
Anthony Stansfeld, Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, said: “I am delighted to be supporting this campaign.
“Shoplifting is a crime that should not be ignored and we can do something to deter criminals from our local shops.”
If you have seen something you can contact Crimestoppers 100% anonymously on 0800 555 111 on at https://crimestoppers-uk.org.