What is Operation Identification?
A program for businesses/corporations that serves as:
- a deterrent to theft of property,
- a means of returning recovered stolen property to the owner and,
- a proven method of aiding police in apprehending those persons who possess stolen property.
How does Operation Identification work?
A unique identifier (institution number) is assigned to a business for the purpose of marking/engraving items and property. This number can be traced to your business by any police agency across Canada. The potential exists for stolen property to be recovered by police (and the victim identified) before the victim knows a theft has occurred. Highly visible stickers on windows, doors, and property items indicate that items are marked and act as a deterrent for thieves. The OP# for Carleton University is OP5-077-126.
What happens if my engraved property is stolen?
The unique number issued to you has been recorded at the Ottawa Police Service. On recovery of property, police will check their files to determine if the number is registered locally. If not registered locally, the number is traced to the issuing police agency.
If you are reporting a theft of property, be sure to inform the police that your items have been marked with an Operation Identification number.
What items should be marked?
All items of value such as office equipment, audio/video devices, or other machinery that is used in the operation of your business. This does not include merchandise offered for sale.
Where should items be marked?
Engrave items in two places where and when ever possible – one in a highly visible location and the other in an inconspicuous location.
How can I engrave my property?
On campus, the Department of University Safety will engrave free of charge computers, peripherals, lab equipment, and other valuables. During the academic year Patrol Services staff in conjunction with the Department of Housing and Food Services, encourages residence students to mark their valuables and keep an inventory of their laptops, stereo equipment, etc. Upon request, university departments can have computers, peripherals and other property engraved by calling the Community Liaison Officer at 520-2600, ext. 1594. Persons residing off campus may also be able to arrange to have their valuables engraved by contacting their local police service. Electric engraving pens may also be borrowed overnight from the Community Liaison Officer and brochures are available to provide guidance on how to properly mark your items.
What else do I have to do?
Take a personal inventory of all items marked and keep that inventory on file. The Department of University Safety encourages all students and staff to keep a record of personal items engraved along with corresponding serial numbers to aid them in filing police reports should those items become stolen. This information should be recorded and kept in a safe place – these files can be saved on a computer disk and stored virtually anywhere for ready access when required.
For a copy of the Operation Identification form, click here: Operation Identification Record (pdf)
Remember, thieves are often deterred because they know that engraved property can be positively identified by the owner and police. For more information about Operation Identification, contact the Community Liaison Officer at 520-2600, ext. 1594.