The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) is launching a campaign to underline the value of the British passport and to help travellers recognise and avoid potential threats from thieves.

Last year more than 20,000 British passports were reported lost or stolen.

To make people more aware of the risk to their passports and other valuables, the FCO has teamed up with stealth crime expert and ‘Man of Steal’ James Freedman to create a series of short videos to demonstrate the techniques used by thieves to pilfer passports, and to offer advice on how to avoid becoming a target.

James Duddridge, Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister, said: “Holidays are a great time of enjoyment with friends and family, but if you do end up a victim of theft, or simply lose your passport, then your trip could be ruined. Criminals operate all over the world, so travellers need to keep their wits about them and take care of their passports or risk losing valuable holiday time and money applying for an emergency travel document. Passports are essential for smooth and safe travelling, so follow our top tips to avoid getting hustled for your passport.”

The videos can be viewed on the FCO Travel Facebook, Twitter and YouTube feeds.

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