SMARTPHONE owners are being warned to remain vigilant following a surge of mobile phone thefts in the capital.
The snatching of smartphones by thieves on push bikes has become the fastest-growing crime in the State, with a spate of thefts in Dublin city.
Extra gardai have been deployed on the streets to thwart the thieves, who are zeroing in on iPhones, Blackberrys and Samsung Galaxy models.
Gardai are particularly concerned by the growing number of 'cycle-by' muggers, who prise iPhones from their victims' hands and ride on.
With a growing black market for these expensive devices, thieves have also been targeting pubs and clubs for people with the expensive devices.
It comes as figures reveal that gardai received over 8,000 reports of phone thefts in the first six months of 2012.
The iPhone 4 retails for €599, while an iPhone 5 costs €679.