Skip to main content

SelectaDNA partners with Three To deter ‘Shop Steaming’

Mobile phone giant Three is just one of many high street retailers to report a growing concern over the rise of criminal behaviour including ‘steaming’ incidents.

Steaming is a crime that involves organised gangs running into targeted stores, threatening staff with violence then fleeing with high value stock such as mobile phones. These incidents can be particularly distressing for retail staff and customers who are left shocked and frightened by what they have witnessed. In addition, there is also damage done to the store and its fixtures and having to close stores for repairs has a massive trading impact.

To proactively deter and prevent this problem, Three recently launched a new partnership with security company SelectaDNA at its flagship store in Oxford Street, London ahead of the launch of the latest Apple iPhone 15 on Friday 22nd September.

The launch, which was covered by Sky News, featured security workshops led by Clair Frame, Head of Sales for SelectaDNA, and was supported by the Metropolitan Police and the National Business Crime Centre.  

The partnership involves forensically marking high value assets across all Three’s retail stores in the London area with SelectaDNA, a property marking system used as part of crime prevention strategies for businesses and residential properties. 

SelectaDNA is a patented, unique forensic marking solution that enables users to mark and identify items of property and criminals. Every item that is marked by Three will also be added to SelectaDNA’s Secure Asset Register (SAR), a database which allows police to check the ownership of recovered stolen goods and return them quickly and easily to the registered business.  

Each Three store is being issued with a SelectaDNA kit (specifically registered to the individual store) along with warning cards which can be placed on the shelving and podiums where the phones are displayed. 

Every store will also display highly visible deterrent window stickers advertising the fact that all stock in the shop is now DNA-protected. 

According to statistics from the Crime Communications Strategy Group, there have been·more than 300 steaming incidents reported in telecoms stores alone. Approximately 50% of these were in a three-month period following the latest iPhone launch. 

Clair Frame, Head of Sales for SelectaDNA added: “Increasing the chance of detection is critical in deterring thieves from targeting retailers.  SelectaDNA provides the police with the evidence they often need to secure convictions, so we are excited about this partnership with Three and fully expect it to make a difference in reducing these attacks. Retailers need assistance from technology providers to protect their stores and particularly their employees, and we are passionate about providing them with the tools to do that.” 

Lyn Poole, Secured by Design, said: “SelectaDNA has been ahead of the game for years in forensic marking and to be in partnership with THREE just proves that they are still leading the way. Selectamark Security Systems actively get out there and prove their products work and this collaboration is another example of this. Well done to the team at Selectamark.”    

About SelectaDNA 

SelectaDNA, the global leader in forensic marking (, offers a full range of property and offender marking products, which combines unique DNA coding with microdot technology. SelectaDNA has been proven to reduce theft and burglaries by up to 83%. SelectaDNA not only reduces crime but also enables Police to link criminals to crime scenes and secure convictions. SelectaDNA is available in a number of formats including a lacquer aerosol for the protection of valuable metals, and a spray to deter commercial burglaries and robberies.   

You can find out more about Secured by Design member company Selectamark Security Systems Plc and their range of SBD accredited Property & Asset Registration products, which include the SelectaDNA range here.