A third of Brits have had a mobile phone stolen

Mobile stolen

Nearly a third of Brits have been victims of mobile phone theft and 14% have even spoken to the thief on the phone, a survey has found.

The research from insurer Protect My Bubble also revealed that more than half (53%) of men would put up a fight when confronted with a mobile phone mugger. Some 41% of women said they'd do the same.

Mobile owners in their 40s (58%) were most likely to put up a fight, followed by 50-somethings (50%) and those aged 20 and under (31%). However, 26% of men and 28% of women said they would run away. And 20% of men and 30% of women would simply hand their phone over.

Theft hotspots

Residents of London, Leeds and Manchester are most likely to have their mobile phones stolen, insurance claims data has revealed.

Between January and June 2014, 16% of claims received by the insurer from Londoners were for mobile theft, while the percentage dipped to 14% in Leeds and 12% in Manchester.

At the other end of the spectrum, residents of Northampton are least likely to be victims of mobile phone theft, with the crime only accounting for 3% of insurance claims. Southampton and Hull are the next safest areas in terms of phone theft, accounting for 3.4% and 3.5% of claims respectively.

Year-on-year, Protect Your Bubble said six cities saw a rise in the incidences of theft. In Plymouth and Preston the crime figures more than doubled, up 167% and 113% respectively. In Nottingham, the number of thefts rose by half and in Portsmouth, Belfast and Edinburgh there was a lift in the figures by 40%, 16% and 8% respectively.

Stephen Ebbett, global director of Protect Your Bubble, urged phone owners to "make it as difficult as possible for your mobiles and tablets to be stolen". He added: "Don't leave them unattended, and carry them in a zipped up bag rather than a pocket, for example."