This story struck a chord with me, as rarely do you see your outboard (or in this case the boat and the outboard) being stolen and captured on CCTV.
Marlin 19 - Suzuki DF140 - Newbury - Sunday 14 November 2010
The police are always slow to react. Let's face it, this type of crime (although horrendous for the owner) is low-down on their priority list. There's not enough communication between forces at the best of times. I would have thought the larger HP engines are stolen for an overseas market, where questions on ownership and registration documentation, are virtually non-existent.
The outboard manufacturers could do a lot more. I know Yamaha are making developments with Y-COP for 4-stroke engines from 30hp - 100hp (electronic immobiliser), although I don't know enough about it. With anything, if there's enough demand, then the technical underworld will find a way of over-coming manufacturer anti-theft devices so the engines can be resold.
My advice, for what it's worth is to think like a thief. If you think your own security (such as a boat yard or marina) is poor, then a professional thief will already have it on their hit list. You'd have thought of removing a 280kg (225hp engine) would be a logistical nightmare, but these bu**ers have it down to a fine art. Fences, gates, locks, you name it, will be cut and removed.
For me, an easy to maintain tracker device with integral battery has to be the way, especially on high value boats and engines. Either that or start sleeping onboard!