eBay has announced that it's teamed up with London’s Metropolitan Police to prevent stolen mobile phone handsets being sold on online. In future, the web-auction site will not allow the sale of barred handsets - a sensible move that will protect the buyer as much as discourage what I believe are known as 'fences'.

The news follows hard on the heels of last week's revelation that muggers prefer Nokia, and serves to further highlight the dangers of openly carrying expensive gadgetry. It will be interesting to see how succesful it is, as similar pre-existing rules are often flouted. (Go to eBay and type in 'knickers' if you don't believe me. On second thoughts, don't. And certainly not at work.)

Two golden rules, I reckon: if you've got a nice phone, keep it in your pocket when you're on the mean streets. You're not hard, muggers might be.

And if you find a 'bargain' online, think twice, and don't moan if it turns out to be nicked.