How to keep your bike from being stolen:
My favorite advice is “Have a really expensive looking Bike… Lock. (and a crummy looking bike)”
Even new bikes can be made less shiny. Ride it everywhere: dirt/mud/let your kid ride it! Don’t worry about it too much…
Register Your Bike!
Don’t even take it out of your sight until you do this.
There are others, too:
Note Your Serial #
This may be the most important part!
Otherwise, you have no proof. I’ve seen some great bikes with the # highly visibly etched or made part of the frame… If your bike is nice enough, consider asking your mechanic to do so.
Lock it up!
Lock your bike, even if you’re leaving it for a minute.
Lock your bike, even if it’s in a locked garage.
Lock your bike, even if it’s in a locked bike cage.
All of these have led to stolen bikes. So…
Lock your bike to the foot of your bed, or to be extra secure, to your foot.
What to do if your bike is stolen:
File a police report!
Over $500, call the non-emergency number at 206-625-5011 to report it to an officer
Post a photo and link to your bikeindex profile and your local area Stolen Bikes group (this is the Seattle one), Nextdoor or neighborhood group, and keep an eye out on OfferUp or craigslist (some will let you set up an alert if descriptions matching your bike are posted).