I have just joined immobilise.com. This is a free service to anyone in the UK and some other countries. It consists of a database upon which you may enter a record of your possessions, registration numbers and so on. If these are ever stolen you may then inform the second hand trade and the police of their loss with a single click of the mouse. You may also download certificates of ownership for insurance purposes.
First objection- privacy.
The list is as secure as any online data ever can be. I am also not particularly worried if some hypothetical criminal gang discover I have a five year old CD player. Will they make the journey to my home town simply to steal this? I doubt it, when their are richer pickings next door to them.
Second objection- this will do nothing to prevent your belongings being stolen.
This is entirely true. It will give you the satisfaction of making the goods harder to fence- and helping the police convict the guilty if they are caught.
The service is financed through the sale of optional home security kits. These generally consist of methods of marking your property visibly (through the use of stickers) and invisibly (through the use of ultra violet ink or electronic tagging). You will also be given window stickers that will hopefully prevent any their entering your home in the first place.
My own kit contains two key tags and a luggage tag. These are a useful way to get your keys returned to you without putting your address on them (a big security no, no). I felt that my own starting kit (costing �26) was rather understocked for the price but I have the satisfaction of funding a worthwhile service. This is acceptable for most single people but a family would probably require two kits.