Crimestoppers is asking the public to be the community’s eyes and ears as it launches a crackdown on rural crime.
The independent charity’s ‘Scene it Herd it’ campaign aims to highlight the types of crimes rural communities face and encourage the public to anonymously report suspicious activity and crimes.
Around 94 per cent of Scotland is classified as rural and the NFU Mutual Insurance Society estimate that rural crime costs Scotland around £1.8 million annually, with levels reportedly increasing.
The main crimes rural businesses and communities face are: theft involving vehicles, machinery, equipment, metal, fuel and livestock; break-ins to farms, homes and business premises; vandalism to property and crops; crimes against livestock and other protected animals, including livestock worrying by dogs; illegal waste sites and dumping.
The campaign will see information postcards posted to 60,000 rural household across Scotland, followed by a social media campaign.
Angela Parker, National Manager for Crimestoppers in Scotland said: “People have an image that living in the countryside is idyllic and crime free.
“But householders and businesses can be a target, as many properties are isolated.
“In small places people usually know each other and may fear retribution or having to make a statement, be a witness or go to court.
“Crimestoppers’ guarantee of anonymity removes this fear and no-one will ever know you called.”
To report a crime, call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.