Police have received reports of scrap metal and batteries being stolen from farms and rural properties in Devon, and men visiting to ask for the same items.
Devon and Cornwall Police are urging vigilance and warning farmers, and those living in rural spots, to lock up property.
Officers want to hear from anyone who has been approached and asked about scrap batteries or metal, and are urging people to make a note of descriptions or vehicle registrations.
A Devon and Cornwall Police spokesperson said: “We have received reports of males visiting farms and rural properties in Devon asking for scrap batteries and metal.
“We have also received reports of batteries and metal being stolen from properties where there was no one about at that time.
“Please be vigilant and do not leave scrap batteries or scrap metal in sight, or easily accessible.”
Call 999 if the crime is taking place, or email information to firstname.lastname@example.org