Operation Provident

Property Theft Deterrent & Return of Stolen Property

Each year, our business community loses millions of dollars worth of business equipment due to break and enters, and thefts of portable electronics or computer equipment, even while the business is open. The theft not only directly leads to financial loss for the business community, it also leads to inconveniences, including insurance deductible costs, the loss of customer information and business downtime.

Operation Provident is a a pro-active deterrent program against property theft, and is also designed to assist the business community in the return of recovered stolen property to the owner. The program is operated through the Vancouver Police Department's Anti-Fencing Unit.

The crux of the program is a national numbering system that assists police officers across Canada to swiftly determine the owner of recovered property through the Canadian Police Information Centre (national computer database). A unique number is assigned to each business or organization which can be marked on equipment, identifying the items in the event of a theft or recovery. The number:

  • discourages thieves from stealing marked equipment due to increased risk of being caught with stolen property
  • limits thieves' ability to profit from the sale of such items
  • allows police agencies across Canada to identify the owner of recovered stolen property
  • assists police in apprehending individuals in possession of stolen property in B.C. and in the rest of Canada

The number is assigned to any business or organization willing to participate in the program; this number can be traced to your business by any police agency across Canada.

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Register for Operation Provident

To register, please email anti-fencing.vpd@vpd.ca with the following information:

  • contact person
  • business / organization name
  • business address
  • work phone
  • home phone
  • fax
  • email