Police in Aberdeen have encouraged people to keep their doors locked and prevent “sneak-in” thefts.
Officers visited hundreds of homes over the last two nights, checking car and house doors and giving advice to residents.
Some residents had even left their doors unlocked while they were out – while others left wallets and keys in unsecured cars.
Sergeant Simon Lewis-Dalby said: “We have got reassurance that the overwhelming majority of people are taking care to lock their doors.
“The message seems to be getting through but it could be better than it is.
“For us it’s about reinforcing that message because people do take advantage. That’s an unfortunate fact of society.
“We would rather spend officers’ time going round houses than dealing with crimes.”
He added: “We have been round lots of houses and most people have taken it very well.
“People shouldn’t be prisoners in their own homes, but they have worked hard for the things they have.
“We are urging people to lock their doors, even when they’re in the house. We don’t want to instil a fear in people. We want to prevent them becoming victims of crime.”
The initiative has been aided by information passed on by community councils in the area.
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Joining the officers on the operation this week was Braeside and Mannofield community councillor Patricia Reid.
She said: “It was certainly eye-opening to find so many houses unlocked. Most people seem to be really pleased to see the police.
“But people need to know they can prevent crime themselves by locking their doors and it’s about getting that message out there.”
One woman, whose front door on Deeside Avenue could be opened by police, said: “We are definitely going to be more aware from now on. It was really helpful.”
Another, who left a number of valuables in her unlocked car on Deeside Park, said: “I will have to take extra care from now on.
“It is so easy when you come back in to just forget to lock everything up. I’ll be making sure I do it.”
And a man who lives on nearby Deeside Crescent added: “I’m shocked but I’m glad it was the police who found my car open and not anyone else. It’s definitely something that’s going to stick in my mind in the future.”